When expectations and dreams differ from one’s reality, one can feel the pressure to put on a brave face, cope as best we can, keep up appearances especially as we compare ourselves with others who seem to be blitzing both marriage and motherhood. It is difficult to ‘keep it real,’ when we feel all eyes are upon us, sensing pressures, some of which may be real and some imagined. We believe that we should naturally rise to this role because as women we are genetically geared for it; after all, men have no womb to carry and nurture a child for 9 months, nor breasts to nurture them once they arrive.

Postnatal depression (PND also referred to as postpartum depression, PPD) is far more widespread than we may be aware. The statistics hover at an alarming ‘1 in 10 women’ experiencing postnatal depression ranging in degrees of severity. It hits without warning and is not constrained by ethnicity, social status or age. It can strike following the birth of the first child or after any number of births. There are ‘no rules’ by which it abides; it surfaces as a consequence of its ‘own triggers.’ When it strikes, a mother is left pondering what is wrong with her, and where nothing is obvious outside of normal sleep deprivation, shrugs it off and ‘soldiers on.’

Know that you are not alone, you are not a failure and there is light at the end of the tunnel. Now is the time to speak to a health professional or someone you trust.

There is NO SHAME! in experiencing PND.





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