One of my professional beliefs is that we practice (work with) what we know best. I have seen Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders-PMAD from many different angles. PMAD now replaces the term PPD Postpartum Depression, for a few reasons. 1) Women can suffer depression or anxiety during pregnancy, not just postpartum 2) research has shown that anxiety is a commonly experienced symptom that is not recognized when we call it postpartum depression 3) Perinatal really encompasses from the time of pregnancy UP UNTIL 1 year of age for the child.
I urge anyone who is reading this, not to minimize your personal experience with how you are feeling. This is difficult and it’s okay if you feel like something isn’t “right”…… follow up on your intuition. You really are the expert on you and if the professionals in your life aren’t listening, keep in mind there are people who are willing to listen and help you get through this. It gets better with help. The sooner you get help, the sooner you will feel better.
In our lives….”We have seasons of giving & seasons of receiving…. As a new mom, you are in the season of receiving” Birdie Gunyon Meyer, RN, MA Indiana University Health, PSI Past President
I completed the Postpartrum Support International (PSI) certification in February 2017, which is where I heard this saying by one of the presenters, Birdie Gunyon Meyer. And although there are many reasons why 1 in 7 women experience a perinatal mood & anxiety disorder, my experiences and observations have led me to hypothesize the following: women are so accustomed to taking care of everyone else first, followed by doing it all themselves. The idea of being receivers is not discussed in our culture, nor is meeting your own needs first, especially in the midst of a huge transition. There should be no shame or barriers to receiving any type of help; especially when you are caring for a child/ children. Healthy parents= healthy children= healthy families=healthy communities=fulfillment & happiness.
People in every culture have appreciated that parenting is extremely difficult and even coined the saying “It takes a village to raise a child” a very long time ago. It certainly does takes a village to ensure everyone’s well-being. In fact, it’s hard on both parents even when the pregnancy is 100% planned/wanted, you have a great relationship, your finances are in order………..my point is that perfect circumstances don’t make anyone immune to experiencing symptoms of PMAD, including fathers.
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