Want to know the greatest thing about children? They see love no matter what is going on.
I feel like one of the most unspoken subjects of pregnancy or postpartum is postpartum depression. It’s real and we need to let other mamas know that they aren’t alone, we don’t need to stay silent about this. Just because we may not seem to enjoy our babies as much as a mom without PPD doesn’t make us any less of a mom. I can only hope that this will reach at least one person that needs to know they aren’t alone.
I got you, mama!
To give you a little back story on my life before my name changed to Mama. I loved to party, meet new people and work. Let’s be honest for a moment, I drank 7 days a week. That was my life, I dated a bunch of losers (blog for another day), and enjoyed drinking (probably too much).
I met a guy (my now husband) at a bar, had revenge sex (my boyfriend at the time was cheating) and got pregnant. Smart right? My life was about to change more than I could ever plan for.
During my pregnancy with my son I had the most amazing support yet I was still very depressed. My son was born and I never imagined the love I would feel that day.
He was 7lb 8oz of squishy perfection.
Kyle and I got married a few weeks later, and moved back to the Bakken of North Dakota so he could go back to work. I would stay home to take care of our little human.
All of this in my mind had to be perfect. I had to make supper (I’ve never been a cook), clean house, and be the perfect mom.
My husband worked 80+ hours a week, and I was running on no sleep. I absolutely hated every part of my life. I didn’t feel like my husband was giving me the attention I needed, I didn’t recognize that even after 13+ hours of work in a day he would still come home and help with chores and Grayson. I felt like he had no idea what it was like to sit home with just a baby and absolutely no friends.
At 4 months postpartum we left Gray with a sitter for the first time, I had a little to drink and broke down to Kyle. I said things like “I don’t want to be a mom“, and “Grayson would be better off with just you.” We wrote it off as I was just tired and needed a break. It didn’t change, I was just so sad. I didn’t sleep, but I didn’t get up with the baby and so forth.
My marriage suffered the most. We were so unhappy while trying to do the right thing of staying together for our son. For an entire year we went back and forth about divorce. At Grayson’s first birthday we were going to tell our family we were done but we didn’t want to take away from his one year birthday.
This would also mean we were coming up on our one year anniversary, or as we called it divorce party.
We never made it to filing because we couldn’t agree on a custody arrangement. We ended up working on things as I became more clear minded. Thank God we did because life with someone who doesn’t walk away at your worst is such a blessing.
Could we have skipped all this had we known the signs of postpartum depression or if I had been screened for it? I guess I won’t ever know the answer to that, but I’m here to tell you the signs, and that you aren’t alone.
Up to 20% are affected by PPD globally. With each state in the US averaging 11.5%. Around only 15% get professional help.
Signs include but are not limited to (and not the same for every woman) sadness, increased anxiety and irritability. Crying more than usual, oversleeping or unable to sleep. Frequent feelings of anger or rage, not enjoying things you use to. Not bonding with baby, thinking of self harm or harming your baby.
Please get help right away!
As I go through this for a second time with my daughter, I didn’t recognize the signs right away. I was aware it could show up within a year and I was trying everything to avoid it. I went two weeks to a month of watching these signs get worse but was afraid to ask for help. When I came home and told my husband he wasn’t sure how to respond or even act towards me. Now I can’t speak for every mom going through this but I think most would agree to just act normal and understand we are going to have good and bad days. It’s not an on and off switch, maybe one day we will just hand over the little babes or maybe we just want to cuddle them a little longer. Believe me when I say we wouldn’t wish this roller coaster ride upon anyone.
Half of postpartum depression cases go untreated in fear of asking for help.
Your doctors want you to come to them for help, they aren’t going to call CPS (I instantly thought this) because you are depressed or sad.
I am so glad I am on medication this time and am starting to feel like my normal self, and most of all that I’m enjoying my kids. The guilt of my son having to go through this again (even though he won’t remember it) is passing. This is just part of my Thomas Chaos story. It doesn’t define me as a person, mom or wife.
Postpartum depression silence sucks. Speak out!