It is a well-known fact that birthmothers can experience post-partum depression. And when it happens, it is important to know how to recognize and deal with it. Post-partum depression in birthmothers often occurs when a birthmother places her child for an adoption. She then goes through a period of loss including various stages of grief such as anger, sorrow, denial, shock, and depression. It’s not easy to reconcile the emotional adoption process, so it’s completely normal that post-partum depression in birthmothers appears after the placement. But, there are ways on how to cope with that emotional time.
Post-partum depression (PPD) is a complex mix of behavioral, physical, and emotional changes that happen in a birthmother after giving birth. It’s a form of depression that can occur anytime within four weeks after the delivery. Many women experience these emotional and physical changes. Symptoms usually include fatigue, frequent mood changes, difficulty sleeping, and appetite changes. However, these are also accompanied by other symptoms usually linked to major depression, which include a feeling of worthlessness, loss of pleasure, hopelessness, and depressed mood. No one knows what causes post-partum depression in birthmothers, but it may be due to hormonal changes in a woman’s body. During pregnancy, the amount of hormones in a woman’s body increases gently. After the childbirth, these hormones drop rapidly which is a shock for your body.
Coping with post-partum depression – How to guide…
There are some ways to take care of yourself when you’re dealing with post-partum depression:
- Remember that being sad is not a weakness. If all you want to do is watch movies or sleep, do that. Always try to acknowledge your feelings and feel whatever you need to feel.
- Many birthmothers struggle with a feeling of inadequacy and self-blame, but you should remind yourself that you’re strong every day. Appreciate people around you who want to be there for you. If you want to talk to someone who has been through post-partum depression, try to contact other birthmothers. You can also join a support group or seek a professional help if it gets too difficult.
- Try not to feel guilty about the way you feel and remember that it’s important to eat and sleep well. You need to be good to yourself, so focus on taking good care of yourself.
- Get out of the house and do something you’ve always wanted to do. You can also consider including some new activities into your daily routine.
- Remember that this is a medical condition and there are medicines that can be helpful, so talk to your health care provider and ask for advice.
- Don’t isolate yourself and try to maintain a relationship with your family and friends since you need to be surrounded with people who want to help you.
- If you’re feeling extremely anxious, scared or you can’t cope with everyday situations, ask for a professional help. Post-partum depression is something normal and counseling may be extremely helpful in this situation.
Post-partum depression is not unknown and is definitely not something to be ashamed of. It happens frequently, so if you or a birthmother you know start showing symptoms, now you know how to recognize and handle them.