It was supposed to be good (PPMD Story 4)

"After the birth, things did not go as well as they did with my first baby. I started having obsessive thoughts about falling and leaving the children unattended if I were unconscious. I felt withdrawn and had physical pains that would come and go. I thought I was going crazy. "

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Note: 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.


 

It was supposed to be good (PPMD Story 4)

I lived in Montreal, surrounded by friends and family when my first child was born. It was a wonderful experience. When she was one year old, I was expecting her brother and my husband and I decided to move to Mississauga to be closer to his new job. It was my decision and this move would enable me to stay home for a few years to raise the children.

We moved in the winter, and as the pregnancy progressed, I began to feel depressed and alone. After the birth, things did not go as well as they did with my first baby. I started having obsessive thoughts about falling and leaving the children unattended if I were unconscious. I felt withdrawn and had physical pains that would come and go. I thought I was going crazy. Since this move had been my decision I felt guilty about my unhappiness, therefore I felt that I could not talk to anyone about my feelings. I had two wonderful children, a supportive husband, a nice house, and most of all I was home to raise our children, which is what I wanted!

When my son was approximately 9 months old I started feeling better. I was sewing and decorating my house, these projects were lifting my spirit, and when he was one year old, I found a mother's group in my area. I would look forward to these weekly meetings, and one week a local nurse talked to us about post-partum depression. This is when I realized this was likely what I had gone through, that I had suffered alone for no reason; I could have been helped if only I had talked about it. I then decided that I would never be silent about depression again! I trained to work on a telephone support network for new mothers, which I did for 2 1/2 years and talked openly about depression with other women.

When my children were 4 and 2, I was expecting my third child. At approximately 14 weeks of pregnancy, the feelings came crawling back, but this time I talked to my family doctor right away. I explained what I had gone through during the last pregnancy and after the birth of my son. After doing some research on safe medication used during pregnancy, I started to take an anti-depressant at approximately 18 weeks of pregnancy, and until my baby was 6 months old. What a difference it made! If I had one message to tell new mothers, and future mothers, it would be to talk about how they feel, they are not alone, and help is available!

My children are now 13, 11 and 7. Since my third child was born I have had to take anti-depressants on occasion. But I can recognize the symptoms, and be treated right away. We continue to be a very happy family.

 

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PPMD Symptoms
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.

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