When it comes to pregnancy and parenting, there are so many issues that carry people feel are taboo to discuss. But parents should feel free to discuss all the issues they face without fear of judgement—and there's one topic that we really need to start talking about. Doing so could save lives.
That issue is postpartum depression, a condition that affects so many mothers but is rarely discussed. As a result of that, it's misunderstood—and suffering its symptoms in silence has led far too many women to take their own lives or turn to destructive behaviors. But Kathy DiVincenzo is pulling back the curtain on the topic.
DiVincenzo, a doula at Beyond the Bump, shared a Facebook post about her own experience with postpartum depression, and she made an important point about the inauthentic nature of social media while doing so.
"As someone with diagnosed postpartum depression, anxiety, and OCD I feel like it's time to show you what that can really look like, not just the side of me that's 'Facebook worthy.' The truth is, both of these pictures represent my life depending on the day," she wrote. "I would only ever comfortably share one of these realities though and that's the problem. The only thing more exhausting than having these conditions is pretending daily that I don't."
She went on describe the pressure moms feel to love every minute of early motherhood. Sure, that period right after you've welcomed your baby is beautiful—but it's also a time of shifting hormones, sleep deprivation, adjustment and pain.
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If you throw postpartum depression into the mix, it can feel downright suffocating. And when moms only see perfect postpartum images, they feel like they're the only ones struggling and that they're doing all the wrong things.
We're totally in awe of this mama's bravery—because as much as we talk about the importance of opening up about these issues, we also know it's unbelievably difficult to do so. But getting real about this important subject matters.
Celebrities and real moms alike are coming clean about their own experiences with postpartum depression more than ever these days, and that shows definite progress. We can only hope more and more mothers come out to de-stigmatize this issue.