First, I'm naturally pretty free with information about myself. I mean, I do have a blog.
Second, I've been living with depression since I was first diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder in high school, and I know that one of the greatest sufferings for anybody living with a mood disorder is the suffocating feeling of isolation.
I hope that in sharing some of my own experiences with depression, and especially PPD, I can be of service to someone else who may feel isolated, ashamed, or afraid.
Here are a couple of introductory posts about my own struggle with postpartum depression:
And some resources I've found tremendously helpful in navigating the abyss of sleeplessness and hopelessness that can come on the heels of the arrival of a new bundle of joy:
- Postpartum progress. A goldmine of info and support for moms (and husbands) struggling with this beast.
- NaPro technology's progesterone protocol for postpartum mothers. Life saving for me. I always follow the delivery of my babes with a month or two of progesterone injections (or oral meds) to help stabilize my mood and hormone levels. Best of all? It's absolutely zero risk and has no detrimental effect on breastfeeding.
Finally, while it is an intensely personal choice for each mother, I have chosen (with my doctor's supervision) to maintain a low dosage of SSRI use throughout each pregnancy and postpartum period*. I've used prozac, zoloft and celexa with no ill effects (to date) on either baby or milk supply. Again, a very personal choice, but one I'm happy to discuss if you have questions.
(*Disclaimer: after John Paul's birth I tried to drop my meds cold turkey to be more, I don't know, natural, and I ended up with my very worst incident of postpartum depression to date. Needless to say it wasn't my finest 3 months of motherhood.)
St. Dymphna, pray for us.