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Monday, 10 January 2011

PND, it's a thing, it happens and it's better once you know it.

Depression, so taboo... Why? If you have an ailment you'll take medicine, if you feel rubbish you'll tell someone, why can't this be the same with depression, post natal or otherwise?

I suffered with depression very badly before I had children. After one of the world's most pitiful and ridiculous suicide attempts I was told to leave my job, leave London and was put on anti depressants. When I found out I was pregnant with the first, I then (stupidly) took myself off them and after the birth of the first one I was in denial about it all.

I was tired beyond recognition (that I put down to the sleepless nights and the breast feeding and babies) I was low (that I put down to being tired and loss of freedom) snappy and short tempered (that I put down to everything else) and generally a nightmare to be around most of the time. I flipped easily, bed was a haven and something I returned to as often as possible, life became mundane and drudging, my new daughter felt like my prisoner and life (which actually, compared to most, was rather lovely) felt like an existence that I endured, rather than lived. Then, once I could ignore it no longer I took myself off to the Doctor. He gave me a questionnaire to fill out and, as it turned out, I was a full house of yeses. Not entirely sure if that makes me more depressed than anyone, but it did make me certifiably depressed which, to me, really is enough. Anti depressants, that weren't all that great, were prescribed, until I fell pregnant with the second when I also (again foolishly) took myself off those with reckless abandon.

Hormones have a funny way of making all these things better, then slowly but surely the spiral began. Again, just like most, I tried to tell myself to "pull yourself together, things aren't really that bad, it can't be depression, what do I have to be depressed about?" Long and short I was given Sertraline which, again, I didn't get on with, so regularly forgot to take it and thus it made very little difference. Long story short, I ended up in the Dr's surgery again with various ailments and he said that it sounded like depression, out came the questionnaire, this time not so many yeses, but I was still a "looby" as my father would say. I told him (Dr not father) that the only thing that would change this is Effexor XL which I had been on before I had had children. Duly the drug was prescribed and after careful monitoring and jigging with the dose I am right as rain, provided I remember to take it!

If things are getting on top of you and you don't really know which way is up, then perhaps, just maybe, you might need a little pick me up? No one need know if you don't want them to, but you'll know you feel better and, in a way, that is pulling yourself together, surely?

This is something that I feel very passionate about as I have seen so many people struggle (possibly with depression although I am no Dr) and yet you can't tell them that they're depressed, who am I to judge? But it's a real life thing that happens and it doesn't mean that you are a bad person, or less of a person, it just means that the chemicals in your brain aren't quite doing their job properly and they need a bit of help. If you don't do it for yourself, then as my brother said to me, "do it for your children". Problem shared is a problem halved, and solutions are so satisfying even if it's just a chat. No one is perfect, least of all me but if we can share and we can chat and we can be honest, then... who knows?

This new year, I have decided to be honest, so, now it's clear, you should no longer read any of the drivel that comes out of my blog, I might be clinically insane... I have two children, isn't that proof enough?


  1. Very impressive, baby. Even if I do say so from an enormously biased perspective.

  2. Very impressive even if I do say so from a completely unbiased perspective.
    I have suffered depression on and off all my life but at its worst after the birth of my beautiful daughter when on the outside things seemed great but I did not feel that way. In fact, you describe very well how I felt. I used to close the curtains against the world and I did that for about 2 years beforer noticing sunshine one day and starting the slow journey out of it. I have so much to say but better not go on and on here. Thanks for this post and keep up the good work

  3. Right, finally I think I have worked out how to post a comment!!

    Thank you for your honesty, I have really enjoyed reading your blog and because I am a complete eejit have only just worked out how to say so on here....sorry about that.

    Anyway, please keep it up, I love reading what you have to say, so refreshing compared to most parenting related crap that's on the internet. I have mostly had a good old chuckle to myself but this one had be blubbing like a big old baby.

    Again, thank you so much for being normal, honest and keeping it real instead of hiding behind some sickly sweet exterior that motherhood is all hearts and flowers.

    I look forward to reading the next instalment.

    Esther (mum to arsey teenage girl, two year old Damien Omen impersonator and mum to be of Damiens sister due next week) xxxx

  4. Saw the title and suspected it might be you. Very emotional, from the heart and completely honest. Well done. I hope we might see each other again one day. X

  5. Thank you all of you, didn't think this would have the impact it has had. Just nice to know that people are reading my blog and finding something more than rubbish there. Humbled and touched, thank you all. X