Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Current Thoughts on PPD

Just wanted to give a big thank you to everybody who read my last blog post. (And to the two people who commented on it). It was a difficult topic to write about, but it's all been building up inside me, waiting to be written, for the last two years.

Some people asked me why I didn't see somebody about how I was feeling and the PPD. Truth is, I didn't think I had PPD. I just thought I was a straight-up bad mom. I wasn't concerned about it. And isn't it POST pardom depression? I felt that was BEFORE Connor was born.

Once I realized that maybe it wasn't my fault, I guess I kind of denied it. I didn't want to tell anybody about it, and I didn't want to seek help. I grew up in a family where depression wasn't a disease-it was a lifestyle choice that you could get out of at any moment. Even when I discuss it with my family (or try) now, they don't want to hear me make any "excuses." They still think that my bad parenting and my lack of caring was a choice that I made, and they are still expecting me to take full responsibility for it and not blame it on something like PPD. They don't believe that such a disease exists.

I thought about explaining my feelings to my doctor on the day of Connor's first post-birth checkup. But a voice inside me was telling me not to. I was a new mom again. I was supposed to be thrilled with my new addition; not scared of it. I didn't want to tell anybody for fear of judgement. What if I DIDN'T have PPD? What if me not loving Connor really was a choice I made? What if it couldn't be helped? I sometimes thought that my feelings or lackthereof for Connor would never go away. PPD was something that goes away in time. But for me to have it for a YEAR? I didn't think that was normal and I was sure that I didn't have PPD; that I just had a mental illness that made me go from wanting to be a mother to wanting to take it all back.

And then, I remember that my love for Brayden never went away. If you would've asked me which one of my kids I loved more at that time in my life, I would have answered, "Brayden." without batting an eyelash. Now, though, of course, there is NO WAY I would be able to choose between the two. So I didn't want to really take it all back-just Connor. So I thought, "There's no way I have PPD because I still love Brayden and I want him. It's only Connor that I don't want."

I don't know. I thought about getting help about it now, but two years later, it might be too late. I don't have it anymore-would it really make a difference? I can't go back in time and change anything I did/didn't do, and I can't go back in time to make me love my son or feel any sort of responsibility for him at all. That's in the past. It's done, it's over with; I turned over a new leaf, so to speak, and I just feel like it's in the past and should stay there. No amount of help or venting or medication is going to change it.

But then there's always the chance of more children in the future. In the near future, if I can help it. I want my kids to be close in age, so why not? (Other than the fact that I don't have a man LOL)

Part of me thinks that I HAD PPD, and I could totally have a child and be as giddy and excited and love it as much as I loved Brayden from the first day that I found out I was pregnant. But could I? Can PPD COME BACK???? What if I have another child and get PPD AGAIN??

I already feel a lifelone, bone-deep guilt about the mother that Connor never had that first year of his life; the mother that he deserved. While I'm ready to be that mother now, will I ever be ready again?? Poor baby didn't deserve the treatment that he got; no child should ever have to go through that neglect, especially at that early age. It breaks my heart to think that there could be a chance that I would do that to another child.

So, really, the point of all this rambling is that yes, I DO want another child. NO, I DON"T think that I'm ready, or ever will be ready. I'm too afraid to do it again. I had what some people would consider "mild" PPD. What if I get severe PPD next time? I would never be able to live with myself knowing that I could do that to another child.

I'm going to research the hell out of this and yes, I WILL seek help BEFORE I even TRY to have another child. I am just so conflicted right now.....


  1. "Hormonal factors unique to women may contribute to depression in some women. Hormones directly affect the brain chemistry that controls emotions and mood. We also know that women are at greater risk of depression at certain times in their lives, such as puberty, DURING and after pregnancy." (Quoted directly from a site on PPD).

    I have no doubts that you were suffering from some sort of depression. Plus, you were very young, your chances increased greatly because of that fact alone. Not to mention the fasts that he was a second child, you were young, not married, the list goes on I'm sure. All contributing factors here.

    You can't go back and change history, you can only learn from it, move forward, and be the best mom possible from here on out. There aren't any other choices in the matter.

    I think your family aren't any different from most families. Depression is hard to accept as a disease. Plus most people are harder on the ones they love and feel as though they can judge you, because they're your family. Shitty yes, but true.

    I think the fact that you know you were wrong and are doing everything to make up for it now shows you're maturity and what a great mother you are. I think future children are definitely possible for you. I'd just tell your OB next time, I think I was suffering from depression or PPD with my second child and want to make sure you know.

    But I'm just me, these are my thoughts! :)

  2. People who have never experienced depression or anxiety are very quick to judge others. It makes me really angry. Just because you don't understand it, or haven't experienced it doesn't make it any less real.

    I had PPD after my daughter gave birth to my baby that I am raising now. Women's bodies do really crazy things while they are carrying, or caring for babies.

    Don't let anyone tell you that your depression wasn't real! Don't blame yourself either. IT WAS REAL. Now that you have experienced it you know the signs. You will know it's creeping in on you if you decide to have another child and your doctor can work with you to make sure you don't suffer like you did last time.