Our Story

About Us

The Southeast's premier practice caring for your reproductive emotional health.

We are a one-of-a-kind destination for perinatal mental health and wellness serving Florida and the Southeast. We aim to partner with and serve our clients in a comfortable environment where you are able to explore challenging issues and understand your feelings and behaviors.  We strive to help you gain insight, learn practical skills for coping and communicating and take steps towards achieving your goals.

Information for

Patients

Families

Providers

We accept referrals from local and regional providers across the southeastern U.S. We believe the best outcomes come from a team approach centered on the patient and child. Better Beginnings is active in the national perinatal mental health community.

We understand that first call can often be difficult.  We are here to answer any questions you may have and care for your unique needs as an individual or couple with your goals in mind.  The therapeutic process is a partnership; clients invite us to partner with them to learn about their needs and work together towards achieving goals of wellness.

Better Beginnings

Reproductive Mental Health Center

14822 Main Street
Alachua, Florida 32615

(352) 462-9484
info@betterbeginningsfl.com

Monday-Friday
8am-5pm

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Better Beginnings' Story

Founder and CEO, Lauren DePaola is on a mission to help women and families suffering through perinatal mental health problems. Having suffered from post-partum depression after the birth of her first child, Lauren understands first hand the struggles many women go through. She advocates in the United States for perinatal mental health and is involved in leading organizations.

Better Beginnings is birthed from this goal to be a center that takes women through the emotional journey. We bring all the resources together in our tranquil center located in Alachua, Florida. 

Our Philosophy

When a child comes into this world, its not just a baby that’s born, the parents are “born,” too. We must care for parents’ health for overall healthy outcomes.  This mindset drives how we take care of people.

We support you

Through evidence-based tools proven to provide long-lasting relief of emotional health complications, you can go from “surviving” to thriving.  

Key Of Success

We have a passion for the success of growing families. The great news is that the tools to help families are available, we just have let more people know that you are not alone, you can get better.

Founder and CEO

Lauren DePaola

I hold a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Florida and a Master of Social Work from Florida State University.  I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Florida.  I have lived in Alachua and nearby counties since 1990 and have worked professionally within these communities for over 10 years.  In addition to owning this practice I am part of the leadership team for the Florida Chapter of Postpartum Support International, Co-Founder of the Florida Maternal Mental Health Collaborative.  In 2015 I founded the Alachua County Perinatal Mental Health Coalition, a 501(c)3 nonprofit. 

I strive to practice from both a practical and evidence-based model of treatment, with the goal of serving YOU, the client in a holistic manner to reach the goals you set. The client is in the driver’s seat of the therapeutic process with the clinician as an active guide. The therapeutic relationship works best when YOU feel as though your time, energy and monetary investment are being made worth your while. 

I am a mother of two and wife of 14 years and counting. I understand from a personal standpoint the complexities that parenting and the reproductive years present with a focus on the client’s individual and unique experience.  No resources specializing in perinatal mental health were existing in North Central Florida when I became a mother, yet were greatly needed. This is where the passion for opening a place for women and men during these years comes from.

Located in North Central Florida

Serving the Southeast

Better Beginnings is located centrally in Alachua, Florida within driving distance of all of Florida, Georgia and the southeast. If you live out of town, there are many options for accommodations close to our center and we can help you with arrangements. We are located in the heart of Alachua’s quaint downtown with parks and cafes nearby. We love our location in Alachua and think you will too.

Keep your child near you

Onsite Nursery

Having your child nearby during treatment greatly reduces the burden on you. This time is challenging enough without having to worry about what to do with you baby. On less thing for you worry about.