Just Because I’m Blogging About PPD Doesn’t Mean…..

….that I’m still struggling to get out of its grasp, that I’m still battling demons and/or that I’m still dealing with unresolved issues– like guilt, regret, or anger– from my experience nearly 7 years ago. 

I have friends and colleagues–and acquaintances to whom I tell about my postpartum depression (PPD) experience–who ask me, even today, whether I’m okay.  I look at them quizzically and try to deciper what they mean by that question.  I ask them, “Oh, you mean, am I fully recovered from PPD?”  And they nod their heads.  I tell them “Well, heck, yeah….I’ve completely recovered and been off my meds for nearly 6 years. I have no residual issues I’m still battling from my difficult childbirth and postpartum experience.”  I couldn’t be more honest to them and to myself for saying that. Period.

I think some of them have their doubts.  Why?  Because I seem to be focusing a lot of my time on things that have to do with PPD.  My book.  My blog.  Postpartum Support International conferences, fundraisers, friends.  My “liking” PPD-related pages on Facebook.  My taking on an interest to articles, blogs, news, conversations that mention perinatal mood disorders.  I seem to be a different person to them than before I had PPD.  Well, after writing a book for 6-1/2 years and blogging for 2-1/2 years, and a lot of other things going on–like my world revolving around my daughter’s daily schedule of school, activities, etc.–being a “different” person isn’t quite how I’d put it.  People evolve over time.  That’s just a natural occurrence.  Priorities change.  Life circumstances change.  Friendships change.  Experiences change people.  As I mentioned before, I believe my PPD experience has made a significant impact on my life.  It has changed me for the better by opening my eyes  to how closed the eyes of people around me really are with respect to perinatal mood disorders.  Actually, to depression, in general.  Lack of knowledge leads to stigma, which we really can do without. But how are we going to fight the stigma?  By speaking up. 

So, to all those who know me and wonder if I have truly and completely recovered from PPD….rest assured, I have. But does being fully recovered and being at peace with what happened to me nearly 7 years ago mean I’m now going to close a door on that chapter? No, I’m going to keep on doing what I’m doing to try to help other mothers realize the truths versus myths of motherhood, as well as the importance of adequate social and practical support, sleep, and self care during the first several weeks postpartum!

For those of you mommies who are fighting the PPD battle right now, even though it may seem that you will never see the end of the dark tunnel, you will survive.  With the right help and support, you’ll be alright!

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6 thoughts on “Just Because I’m Blogging About PPD Doesn’t Mean…..

  1. Thanks Ivy! I’m not seeing a therapist. I saw one that my OB recommended back when Easton was tiny, but the office was horribly run and they didn’t really have anyone that understood what I was going through. I wasn’t able to find one that my insurance would cover that also dealt with PPD stuff. Anyway, I’m going good. I do have rough times, and I’m a different person now, but mostly for the better. Oh, and congrats on the book!!! 🙂

    • PPD is a horrible, i have gone through it with in my family and it is very hard to deal with. All I can say if do not ever completely expect to get rid of PPD it can have lasting effect on your personality and relationships with your partner and family. It is something you must work at but you will always have bad patches with any depression illness.

      • Hi Maria,
        Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment! You are absolutely right. Not everyone who’s suffered from PPD will return completely to the way they were prior to PPD. I have a classmate whom I mention in my book that says her chemistry never reverted completely back to her pre-baby emotional self. For some women like her, it seems that the biology behind their moods is permanently altered during the childbirth process. It has also been shown that, once you’ve experienced major depression, anxiety/panic attacks, or other serious mood disorders, you will be more susceptible to future episodes of mood disorders.

  2. So true! I was talking to a newly pregnant for the 1st time momma and she asked me how my whole pregnancy/postpartum experience was. I told her. All of it. She ended up asking me if I was ok. 🙂 I’m still on medication..but yes..I’m ok.

    • Hi Julie,
      Good to hear from you, my friend! I’m glad you are feeling okay now. I visited your blog just now and see a recent photo. You look great, and your son’s so cute! I’m glad to see you recently posted to your blog, but sorry to hear you recently went through a rough patch. Are you seeing a therapist at all? I promise to drop a comment there as soon as I’m able (technology not allowing me right now). Take care!

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