This is a picture of all encompassing bliss and gratitude. I was meant to be this sassy girl’s mama. However, the road that paved the way for moments like this one to exist, required a lot of self reflection and support. Motherhood did not start out the way I had imagined it would. I was surrounded by so much love, yet felt suffocated and alone. After weeks of panic, mania, and sleepless nights; I finally went to my doctor and was prescribed medication for Postpartum Anxiety. It’s important for these stories to be told - and I want to hear yours.
I wanted to share with you all a few facts about PPD/PPA that stuck with me. If this is not for you, it may affect someone you know and love. Knowledge is power!
• 600,000 women get some form of PPD/PPA every year in the United States alone.
• Only a mere 15% of women with Postpartum depression/anxiety ever receive professional treatment. This means there are roughly 850,000 women each year that are not getting the help that they need.
• Postpartum mood disorders don’t always show up immediately after you give birth, and are not the same as ‘Baby Blues.’
• PPD/PPA does not discriminate; any new mother is susceptible; however, there are certain risk factors that can predispose some more than others.
• Extreme sleep deprivation can trigger Postpartum depression/anxiety.
• Most women suffering think that they are the only ones.
Having Postpartum Depression/Anxiety does not make you a bad mother. Just like any mood or mental health disorder does not make you an unworthy human. We need to speak out against the stigmas attached to these kinds of topics. We should be active participants in their discussions, so that we can stand in solidarity with those affected within the mom community. These experiences are so much bigger, and so much more profound than we give them credit for. They are the livelihoods of moms, much like you and I, just trying to survive another day. I’m proud of each and every story I’ve shared - the authors behind them are resilient, courageous, incredible mothers. So, who’s next?
Please see my MBMH highlight for more information on this ongoing series.u