Why do I feel this way?

Why do I feel this way?

It is done, you got through it. Your new baby is here. You assumed you would be happy and excited and bonding with your baby. So why do you feel exhausted, tense, and isolated?

You may be experiencing something that 1 in 7 new mothers experience during the first year. PPD or Post-Partum Depression affects roughly 70%-80% of new moms and can range from minimum symptoms to more serious ones.

You can get through it and you will get through it. You are not alone, and it does not mean you love your new baby any less. Everyone needs help sometimes.

Here are some symptoms to watch for after birth, known as the “baby blues”

Mood Swings

Crying Spells

Anxiety

Difficulty Sleeping

These symptoms usually last 2-3 weeks. And as you may have guessed, these symptoms are common for lots of people, parents or not!

Some of the more severe symptoms that may last longer and require help are:

Depression and Severe Mood Swings

Excessive Crying

Difficulty Bonding with new Baby

Withdrawal from Friends and Family

Loss of Appetite

Insomnia

Overwhelming Fatigue

Hopelessness

Irritability and Anger

Feelings of Worthlessness

Severe Anxiety and Panic Attacks

Thoughts of Harming your Baby or Yourself

These symptoms are not character flaws or weaknesses. Just complications from birth experienced by many women and even some men! If these symptoms are severe or do not fade after two weeks here are some resources to help. Prompt attention and asking for help can drastically reduce how severe the symptoms get. There is treatment and exercises that will help you feel better and bond with your new baby.

It is a good idea to have your doctor monitor you during birth for signs of depression and anxiety. Being able to talk to someone before birth is a good way to possibly prevent negative outcomes. The earlier PPD is detected the earlier treatment can begin.

PPD Resources:

PSI Helpline: 1-800-944-4773

SAMHSA Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)

DSHS Women’s Health: 1-800-994-9662

PSI Online Support Meetings: https://www.postpartum.net/get-help/psi-online-support-meetings/

There is help. You do not have to face this alone and it does not mean something is wrong with you. You are a courageous, capable and fierce woman! You love your child. You’ll get through this.