When it comes to depression, it's incredibly important to have a place to be able to talk openly and honestly about how you are feeling. You have to be able to find support from others who have been where you are or empathise with your situation. The only problem is, that it's often a very hard thing to open up in front of others, face to face. Or maybe, perhaps, there isn't anywhere a person feels like they can go to where they can open up, and talking to their family isn't something they feel comfortable with either. That's where the internet comes in.
When it comes to talking about how you feel, it's important that you start by simply labelling the emotions you are feeling. Just saying "I feel stressed" can start the ball rolling and get you talking about where you may feel that stress is coming from, and how you can go about addressing the issue. If you want a simple way of putting it, just go with this: Name it to tame it.
I said on the Postnatal Depression Toolkit page that not everything being covered is going to be applicable to everyone. This is one of those suggestions that is aimed more at the fathers who are suffering from PND than the mothers. So if you are a mother in all this, then feel free to pick another option. Or you may be concerned about your partner, in which case, there may be something here for you to read.
If you're reading this then there's a chance that you might be looking for ways to help with postnatal depression. This is a toolkit, or survival guide, advice page, whatever name you want to give it. But it's aim is to help beat postnatal depression! Some of what I'll cover here will also help with [...]
We were never supposed to do this alone. Raising a child was something that the whole tribe likely would have taken a role in. And as for the mother, she would've been surrounded by others who had either been there before, or ones who were in the same boat as she was. My point being, if you're struggling because you're doing this on your own, then it's because you were never supposed to.
For whatever reason, I've been a little reflective of my postnatal depression this week. I think it was down to the fact that I was actually on Twitter for the first time during a #PNDhour, (which is Wednesdays between 8-9pm) and I obviously got talking to a bunch of people about postnatal depression. So I thought I'd sit here and give an update on where I am now. Personally I feel like it's important to not only hear about people's struggle with PND, but also to hear something from those out the other side. After all, that's what everyone wants, to be on the other side.
Having postnatal depression is crap. But, like many illnesses it's not just the person who has it who suffers. It's also the people that live with them that have to go through it as well. That's what happened to me. I didn't suffer from postnatal depression, my husband did. I'm currently hijacking his blog to talk to you about what helped us through his postnatal depression. Luckily for me, or maybe not, I've grown used to his depression. He's had depression pretty much most of our relationship, so I've been here before, but I wasn't prepared. At all. Knowing him, and knowing that this was everything he wanted, since very early on in our relationship, it was an incredibly hard thing to watch and cope with. Still to this day, I'm not quite sure how I didn't have a breakdown myself. Anyway, here's my five things to help with someone going through postnatal depression.
It’s something that not many people give that much thought to, but postnatal depression affects somewhere between 13-19% of mothers, and around 10% of fathers (numbers vary depending on the studies). That’s quite a lot of people. So what I aim to do here is give a few ways that I feel, either from my own experiences or through research, may alleviate, or in some cases help prevent, postnatal depression. Due to the fact that I am a father, some of what I’ll say here is aimed more at other fathers as opposed to the mothers, but the majority of it applies to both. Here we go: