#37: Carly Snyder, Medical Physician, Radio Host, & Writer

Carly Snyder is a doctor that specializes in comprehensive reproductive psychiatry and women’s mental health services. Her approach combines traditional psychiatric treatment and integrative medicine-based treatments to optimize the body and mind. Her weekly radio show, MD for Moms, can be heard Wednesdays at 1pm ET on the BBM Global Network, iHeart Radio and TuneIn Radio, or anytime via iTunes as a podcast or at  boldbravemedia.com/shows/md-for-moms/. Dr. Snyder’s HuffPost parenting blog shares the MD for Moms moniker.

https://www.carlysnydermd.com/

What do you consider your top 3 core values and how do they affect how you lead your business?

3 of my core values are honesty, autonomy and humility. I am a reproductive and perinatal psychiatrist, meaning I work with women struggling with emotional symptoms throughout their reproductive years. Honesty is interwoven into all I do. My goal is to establish a relationship with each patient based on trust and mutual respect - it’s imperative that women feel comfortable openly sharing their feelings without fear of criticism or reproach.

I also strongly believe in a woman’s autonomy to make decisions about her body. I always take time to listen to a woman’s thoughts, concerns and preferences and never dictate treatment or offer only one ‘best’ plan. I believe that my role is to provide the options with attendant risks, benefits and alternatives and to allow women to decide based on all the available data what works best for them.

Another aspect of what I do is to support women in advance of and following pregnancy termination at any gestational age. I am staunchly pro-choice and believe strongly that a woman should have the reproductive freedom to make decisions about her body without government intervention or involvement of any kind. My goal is to provide a safe, warm and nurturing place for women to process their feelings about this experience without any judgement.

Lastly, humility is another core value driving my practice. My work is based on data from evidence based medicine and from personal and professional experience. But, no one fits into a perfect box and no ‘body’ reads a textbook. It would be pig headed and presumptuous to assume I know more about a woman’s body than she does - the day I find myself talking before listening is the day I need to take a step back and recenter myself. Each woman is unique and I am constantly humbled by the opportunity to hear their deeply personal stories and to have the opportunity to work with them towards improved health and wellbeing.

Can you share a time you either thought you failed, or actually did fail? How did you react and move past it, and what impact did it have on business decisions?

In the course of writing essays about maternal mental health in the past for my HuffPost blog and other publications I’ve disclosed small personal anecdotes, but until recently never wrote a purely self reflective essay for mass consumption. However, I was moved to document my #metoo story in the wake of the Kavanaugh hearings. Writing the essay was easy, editing it was an arduous, painful and lengthy task. Once complete, I received glowing feedback and (naively) assumed it would be published quickly - I was utterly unprepared for the subsequent rejections. Typically, people approach me to write about women’s mental health, so submitting an essay for publication is new to me and I quickly learned how tough a process it is. I reached out to every contact I could think of and have been beyond humbled and blown away by the support I’ve received, yet so far nothing has worked.

One mainstream magazine said their online site had too much overlapping material (the pun wasn’t lost on me, though I doubt the editor meant to be so crass), another said their legal department would require contacting the man who had raped me even though he is never named in the piece (I said that was fine, but they still passed). A third said they would print it in a heartbeat if I was a celebrity... I’ve wanted to give up, to just post it on my website and call it a day, but I won’t do that because I truly believe it should be read by more people and here is why.

I sent the essay to a relatively new friend who works in the media industry - the response I received moved me beyond words. I will refer to this person as Pat herein in the interest of maintaining anonymity. Pat emailed back disclosing a sexual assault from early adolescence that had been a secret until now. Pat wrote that a lifetime of shame and isolation were alleviated by reading my essay. What an awesome honor to have made this degree of impact on Pat’s life! Pat has started therapy and is working towards regaining a sense of ownership over life that was lost at age 14.

Each time I feel defeated that my essay has not been picked up, I remember Pat. I realize that it will find a home and will hopefully help many others and if not, then one life is more than enough.

What types of projects do you have coming up that we can look forward to seeing in the future?

My business partner, acupuncturist Christina Burns and I are working on a very exciting new venture in the food arena focused on women’s health that will fill a gap in the current market. More details to come!