Uninvited thoughts (PPMD Story 2)
"I felt no joy and the guilt
was overwhelming. Worse of all, I mourned the loss of time
with my daughter. Months went by and I didn't feel I was
a part of her life. I was just going through the motions.
[Read the full story]
These stories have been submitted by women who have experienced
PPMD and want to use their experience to help others. Any
names have been changed for privacy reasons.
(PPMD Story 2)
My daughter, was born in June 1994. I was
an older mom (36 years old) and my husband and I had carefully
planned our first pregnancy. She came into the world, and
like most first time parents, we were in awe. We read all
the books, listened to all the tapes and watched all the videos.
Life was good. We had a beautiful, healthy baby and things
couldn't be better.
Then the world as I knew it turned upside
down in Nov. 1994. That month a woman named Susan Smith told
the world that her car had been car- jacked and that her two
sons, ages 3 years and 14 months, had been kidnapped. The
media was having a field day. You could not turn on the television
without seeing the faces of these two children. I became obsessed
with the story, worrying constantly about those children.
What could have happened to them? Where they being hurt? I
could not imagine what this mother was going through! About
a week later the mother confessed to driving her car into
the river with her two children strapped into their seat belts.
I will never ever forget my husband breaking the news to me.
I could not get my head around it. How could someone possibly
do something so horrific to their own children? I had a terrible
dream about a week after the incident. I dreamt that I did
something to my daughter. To this day I can't remember the
details. I think it was such a nightmare that I have blocked
it from my memory. All I knew was that I woke up in a panic
and that I could not stop crying. I didn't want my husband
to go to work that morning. I didn't want to be left alone.
I kept that awful dream from my husband for a long time. He
knew something was wrong but didn't know how to help. Things
just got worse. I started having anxiety attacks and I worried
constantly. I never thought I was going to do something to
my daughter but I kept having these horrible thoughts and
images come to mind. I would be bathing her and I could picture
her drowning. I couldn't be around knives because the images
were too scary. I would be walking with my daughter in the
stroller and I could picture a car hitting both of us. It
was physically and emotionally exhausting. I felt no joy and
the guilt was overwhelming. Worse of all, I mourned the loss
of time with my daughter. Months went by and I didn't feel
I was a part of her life. I was just going through the motions.
I struggled for quite a long time
on my own. Trying to will myself out of this nightmare. My
husband could not have been more supportive but he didn't
really know where to go for help. The turning point for me
was looking into my husband's eyes and seeing how he longed
for the woman he had married. I finally decided to take action.
I made an appointment with my doctor and ended up going on
medication. I was mad at myself for waiting as long as I had.
The medication eased the thoughts and I could feel myself
climbing out of the well I had been stuck in for so long.
The medication lifted my symptoms but the "true"
help came in the form of a mother's support group. I connected
with a woman who had suffered from Post Partum Depression
(PPD). She ran a group out of her home, on a volunteer basis,
for mothers who were suffering from PPMD. That experience
has been by far the most profound thing I have ever gone through.
The power of hearing another woman who had suffered and recovered
from PPMD made all the difference in the world. My husband
and I have since added two more children to our family. I
suffered some PPMD after my second daughter was born but not
nearly as severe. I knew how to ask for support and I received
it much earlier. Today I feel I am a stronger person for going
through such an ordeal. Presently, I work with women who are
suffering with PPMD. My work is something that is near and
dear to my heart and I know that I will continue to tell my
story with the hope of helping other women who are suffering
to PPMD Stories]
Submit your story
If you or someone you
care about, has suffered from PPMD, we would like to
hear about your experience. Submit
If you or someone you care about has any of these symptoms, get help, call or visit:
Your healthcare provider (family physician, midwife, nurse, OB/GYN, psychiatrist)
Your local Public Health Agency: Service Ontario 211 www.serviceontario.ca
Telehealth: 1 866 797 0000 or TTY 1 866 797 0007
Mental Health Helpline: www.mhsio.on.ca or 1 866 531 2600
Life with a baby www.lifewithababy.com is a non-profit group of mothers available in some communities of Ontario and online that help mothers connect with other one another for emotional and practical support. They offer events and programs such as play dates, time out for mom and family outings.