Why am I so sad? What is wrong with me? I don’t want to hold and kiss my baby… I must be loosing it! Why is everyone so happy? I must be really tired. Let me continue to post pictures online of my happy family so no one thinks anything is wrong with me… After already having three children, there is no way I could experience postpartum depression.

This was me not too long ago. I did not understand what was going on with me. I did not know that after already having three children, that I could experience the feelings that I felt. I was lost. I felt like I was alone. I did not know any other moms with the same feelings. Finally, at my breaking point, I called my doctor.

My doctor saved me. The conversation with my doctor was the best conversation that I had in a very long time. She let me know that I wasn’t alone. She told me that she has had many patients come to her with the exact same feelings.

But why isn’t anyone talking about this? Why are we moms afraid of letting the truth out about motherhood? Why do we feel pressured to be perfect and to raise perfect children?

Know that you are not alone!

According to the CDC, There are over 950,000 women suffering from depression or postpartum depression each year.

Symptoms of depression include

Lasting sad, anxious, or “empty” mood.

  • Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism.
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness.
  • Feelings of irritability or restlessness.
  • Loss of interest in hobbies and activities.
  • Loss of energy.
  • Problems concentrating, recalling details, and making decisions.
  • Difficulty falling asleep or sleeping too much.
  • Overeating or loss of appetite.
  • Thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts.
  • Aches or pains that do not get better with treatment.

The symptoms of postpartum depression are similar to symptoms of depression, but may also include:

  • Crying more often than usual.
  • Feelings of anger.
  • Withdrawing from loved ones.
  • Feeling numb or disconnected from your baby.
  • Worrying that you will hurt the baby.
  • Feeling guilty about not being a good mom or doubting your ability to care for the baby.

Experiences that may put some women at a higher risk for depression include:

  • Stress.
  • Low social support.
  • Difficulty getting pregnant.
  • Being a mom to multiples, like twins, or triplets.
  • Losing a baby.
  • Being a teen mom.
  • Preterm (before 37 weeks) labor and delivery.
  • Having a baby with a birth defect or disability.
  • Pregnancy and birth complications.
  • Having a baby or infant who has been hospitalized.

Depression can also occur among women with a healthy pregnancy and birth.

Please be aware of your body. Please allow others to help you. Please do not feel ashamed.

It is time to let down the walls and support each other. Being a mom is not easy. Let us embrace this journey together.

Contact me if you need someone to talk to. Trust me, I know how this journey feels.

https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/depression/index.htm

http://www.postpartumprogress.com/the-symptoms-of-postpartum-depression-anxiety-in-plain-mama-english