Almost a year back, I delivered my first-born. The moment I saw my mum, I simply cried my eyes out. Without any reason, any trigger, I just cried. I still remember it vividly. Everyone around me shushed me by saying that the eyes will be affected. I stopped crying, but something within me was still stirring. Later on, for the next 20-30 odd days I slept crying, bawling like a baby who wanted to be with mommy daddy.
Nonetheless, after 2-3 months, I came across someone who had postpartum depression. Gradually I started researching over it and realized that even I showed some signs of it. So I talked with one of my cousins who is a psychologist. We together concluded that depression and baby blues are different. But to my horror, she told me that,
“Today, there are over 10 million cases of postpartum depression are reported in India. And if one understands the situation statistically, then almost 26 million babies are delivered each year, across the cities and countryside. So almost 40% of the new mothers are diagnosed with it. “
This itself is a huge number. WHO estimates depression to be the second biggest killer of mankind. True! your life comes at a standstill. You might consider committing suicide or killing someone. And it is not because someone has treated you badly, but life as a whole. But what exactly goes into making? How does one reach to that stage of postpartum depression? So, here is the answer.
Childbirth is one of the most overwhelming experience. A lot changes in you- on hormonal, physical and emotional level. Trust me, there is just a mammoth change. Like Munnabhai says, full on hormonal locha, bhai! You are excited. You are over the world. You are immensely overwhelmed. You are scared as well- scared of entering into this new phase. You are anxious. But what you on’t expect is depression. But take my words, if someone consider depression to be a character flaw or mere sadness, then please consider taking that person to psychiatrist along with you- while you are counselled for depression, they need treatment for being delusive. Oh yes! delusion of being all- knowledgeable.
Were you ready for being a mother?
Did you want pregnancy, kid, motherhood to happen? Or was it a contraceptive failure? If answer to any of this is yes then you might consider abortion as an option. Save yourself of the agony of being an expecting mother, a mother, and more importantly a depressed being. And yes, whosoever says that motherhood will change your thoughts, go for it. Please ask them, if they are still interested in taking another plunge.
If you have any history related to depression- be it from your previous childbirth or a family member or some dear one who has depression or anxiety disorder. Or if you had some tragic incident in past- may be you lost someone (even a miscarriage) or illness. Then please consider talking your gynecologist about your concerns.
Honestly, even I won’t have researched and had this walk with postpartum depression, had my husband and my baby won’t have been at risk. Yes, you read it right. There exists postpartum depression for father, that is a ripple effect caused by the mother and vice versa also holds true. But more importantly, that innocent kid can develop behavioral or emotional problems.
Nonetheless, remember it is always better to talk it out. Talk to your friends, mother, husband, sister- anyone, just speak up. You might consider writing it down. But remember YOU need to act. The best help you can get is you. Its your willpower that can help you the most. It is you who need to talk to someone. While counselling, medicines will do their job, it is your willpower that will take you out of this disorder. Be strong.