Sunday, October 7, 2007

Depression

I have to blog about this because it makes me very very happy.

I went of my anti-depressants about 2 weeks ago. Not many people know this, but about 6 weeks after Annelise was born I was diagnosed with Post-partum Depression. Without getting into a lot of detail, those were very, very dark days for me. Not many people knew how I was feeling.

I guess maybe I was a little ashamed. When I had Annelise, I knew it was supposed to be this joyous and beautiful time in my life. A lot of it was, and I knew I had a lot to be grateful for. As the weeks went on, those feelings of joy seemed to be replaced by anger and despair. Everyday I was a little angrier than before. This was not the typical "baby blues" Luckily for me, I have a wonderful husband that knew something wasn't right. He basically sat me down and told me that he loved me and supported me, but I needed to get some help. I called my OB and went on meds for depression. Within days, I felt like a new woman.

I suppose a lot of people think this is far too personal for a blog entry. For me, its almost cathartic. Getting rid of the meds was both nervewracking and freeing. When I realized that I could deal with a crying baby without wanting to run away from home, it was a small triumph for me.

To all the readers of my blog that may want to be pregnant someday, take a lesson from me. Baby blues should not last weeks upon weeks, it should last 10-14 days tops (according to my OB). If you think something is wrong, call your doctor. Insist that your husband be honest with you about how you are behaving. After 9 months of walking on eggshells because of pregnancy hormones, some men are a little reluctant to do this. Please sit down with your significant other and let him know what PPD is, what the signs are, and that above all, he needs to help you get help. Yes, the first few months of motherhood are hard. They are emotional, physically exhausting, mentally exhausting, confusing and frustrating. But they should also be full of love and joy at the miracle that has come into your life.

13 comments:

Jessica said...

Thanks for sharing! This is one of my biggest fears. My husband and I will definitely have "the talk" about this and I'm also going to mention it to my OB on Wednesday. Did you talk to your Dr. about it before delivery?

Jess P said...

My doctor had a talk with me about it. At my clinic, we also got a binder of pregnancy informationand there was a section on it in there. I had been on meds before for depression after my mom died, so they did monitor me.

I highly suggest talking to your OB and getting as much info as you can!

I think I'm dying. said...

I think it's great that you share these things! Mental illness of any type is nothing to be ashamed of, regardless of how it comes about. I have had to deal with that fact for over 10 years, and I'll probably always be on meds. But finally I'm not embarrassed about it- I did nothing to cause it. The same is true about post-partum depression. At least you realized what was going on and had the guts to do something about it. Kudos!

Britta said...

Medical conditions happen for all sorts of reasons. I'm glad you were able to address yours and feel like yourself again! That must have been scary while you were going through it, and I'm glad you have such a supportive husband.

Elizabeth said...

I was JUST talking about this with one of my co-workers. We're both shocked at how people don't ever talk about PPD. Ever. And so many women go through it. Props to you for blogging about it. Great post.

Elizabeth said...

and ps... Congrats! I'm glad you're feeling better these days.

Erin Nevicosi said...

I agree - there's no need to feel ashamed about admitting things like this - more people should be so honest!

Glad to hear you're feeling better these days, though. :)

Jess P said...

I should clarify that I don't really feel ashamed anymore, but it definitely took me awhile to get past it.

Elizabeth is right, no one really talks about PPD. I wish it would out there more, so many women suffer needlessly because they think its normal to feel that way, or because they are too afraid to admit the way they are feeling. I can definitely understand how its easy to feel that way. I had some VERY dark thoughts during that time, things I'm not sure I could ever admit. But I know now that it wasn't me thinking those things, and that isn't really how I felt.

Anonymous said...

I think that it is awesome (and brave) of you to blog about this. I can't wait to have children, but I've also had problems with depression and am a little worried that I may experience PPD too. I hope not, but I'm glad to know there is information out there about it and that there are good, normal people out there who are willing to talk about it.

Natasha said...

This is very brave and honest of you. I can't imagine how hard it would be to have dark thoughts at a time that is supposed to be full of happiness. I'm so happy you and your husband were able to recognize it and get help. Allowing you both to enjoy AK's baby stages is so important. I'm glad that you were able to do that AND that you are now off the medicine. Hurray!

Steph Gee said...

I think it's wonderful you posted this. It is something that women go though that isn't discussed. I'm currently kinda worried about a friend of mine.

Meghan said...

It's great that you can share this for the benefit of others who might go through it. And I am so glad that you're feeling better!

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you shared this because I think so many people are afraid to talk about it...although it's normal, so I don't know why. It's so great that you got the help you needed--and that your husband was so awesome!

I was really worried about PPD since my biological mother was bipolar, so I told my OB to keep an eye on me beforehand.

And now you can enjoy that little peanut of yours with a clear head and heart!