Postpartum Depression Success Stories
Postpartum depression can be a crippling, devastating and life-altering condition. Most of the awareness regarding postpartum depression focuses on biological mothers. However, fathers and adoptive parents can experience postpartum depression too. For those close to the affected person, such as spouses, parents, siblings, friends and other children, postpartum depression can leave them feeling helpless.
Despite the frustrating, tragic and sometimes even horrifying circumstances surrounding postpartum depression, there are plenty of success stories that have surfaced from the struggles.
Success stories are important to share. They give hope to women who are at risk of developing postpartum depression, women who have recently given birth, and women are currently facing symptoms of their own.
Success stories share coping tools, help set expectations and provide validation and comfort in the wake of guilt, shame and fear. Success stories also help family members better understand that there is hope. Postpartum depression is temporary if the affected person has a network of support.
New Mother Success Stories
New mothers are the biggest group directly and most severely affected by postpartum depression. There are countless women who have shared stories of going from a depressive and even psychotic state to a full recovery. They enjoyed rich and fulfilled marriages, relationships, friendships and careers. These women went on to experience the joys of motherhood and experience other childbirths as well.
Even mothers who suffered extreme types of postpartum depression such as postpartum psychosis or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) have made full recoveries. Many women report that despite being hospitalized, their experiences from these traumatic events actually helped them to understand their disorder and recover in healthy ways.
While many women undertake difficult journeys as they suffer from postpartum depression, countless women shared positive outcomes once they achieved recovery.
Father Success Stories
There is plenty of hope for new fathers as well. Often times, fathers will experience depression after a baby has arrived. Because the effects of postpartum depression in men are still relatively unknown, they tend to suffer in silence. This causes long and drawn-out periods of depression that can last months or even years.
Thankfully, many fathers today are opening up about their stories when it comes to postpartum depression. By sharing their own struggles, they can help other men to feel more open to seeking treatment and communicating their feelings.
Many men have reported their struggles with postpartum depression allowed them to address mental and emotional issues that they otherwise wouldn’t have acknowledged. These men go on to live fulfilling and enriched lives as husbands and fathers.
Adoptive Parent Success Stories
Adoptive parents are another group that often suffers in silence with postpartum depression. Some adoptive parents feel confused, ashamed and guilty of their depression symptoms once a new baby joins the family.
Adoptive parents can seek treatment for their depression. Adoptive parents often report that despite their initial struggles with postpartum depression, they overcame this condition and went on to develop deep parental bonds with their adoptive children.
Couples Success Stories
When one partner is struggling with postpartum depression, the other partner can begin to take on depression symptoms as well. Couples often face marital problems that are compounded by treating postpartum depression and caring for a new baby.
Despite martial challenges such as a lack of intimacy and limited communication, couples can heal their relationships through therapy. Many couples claim that their challenges with postpartum depression ultimately brought them closer together. In the end, it helped them both become better parents and better partners to each other.
Success Rate of Treatment
It is important to realize that these parents achieved these successful outcomes because they sought treatment. Here is what treatment looks like when it comes to resulting in postpartum depression success stories:
- Early intervention and diagnose
- Prescription medication such as SSRIs or antipsychotic medications
- Psychotherapy with a psychologist and/or psychiatrist
- Lots of rest
- The support of family and loved ones
- Prioritizing health and wellbeing such as diet, exercise and relaxation
- Participating in community support groups or online groups that provide comfort and advice from others who can relate
Learning Outcomes for Those Affected
The biggest lesson that anyone who has overcome postpartum depression will tell you is that there is hope. Countless women and men have learned how to be better parents and how to take better care of themselves as a result of postpartum depression.
Here are some of the lessons others have learned from their own postpartum depression success stories:
Know Your Own Strength
Suffering from postpartum depression teaches you about your own strength. When everything in life seems dark and hopeless, eventually you are lifted out of a fog and achieve recovery. Even if it takes months or years, you can reflect on your resilience and know that you have strength moving forward to face any other life challenges.
Prioritize Your Well-being
Women are especially guilty of putting everything else before their own personal health. Many mothers learned this valuable life lesson through their struggle with postpartum depression. If it wasn’t for prioritizing their health, seeking treatment and talking about their condition they wouldn’t have been able to recover.
Ask for Help
The irony of postpartum depression is that it often affects people who are less likely to ask for help or who often feel vulnerable. Experiencing and recovering from postpartum depression can teach those who have struggled about the value of a support network. It also helps men and women alike to realize that there is no shame or weakness in asking for help. Instead, there is a lot of strength and resolve in asking for help from loved ones and professionals.
You Deserve Happiness
One of the most important lessons many success stories reveal is that that we all deserve happiness. Though postpartum depression brings out emotions, behaviors and thoughts that are miserable, they are not representative of the sufferer. When treatment begins and symptoms become managed and controlled, the idea of deserving happiness becomes more attainable. Eventually, there is comfort in the idea that the condition is separate from you and that it will pass.