The #MyWishForMoms campaign aims to spread awareness and promote conversation about postpartum depression and anxiety.

By Maressa Brown
lev radin/Shutterstock

May 10, 2019

In October 2013, a dad from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania named Steven D'Achille tragically lost his wife Alexis. Since giving birth only six weeks prior, Alexis had suffered from postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis, and lacking proper treatment, the embattled mom took her own life.

In the wake of losing his wife, D'Achille devoted his energy and time to efforts that raise awareness around postpartum mood disorders. He's the founder of the Alexis Joy D’Achille Foundation, is on the board of Postpartum Support International. He's also involved with Allegheny Health Network’s Alexis Joy D’Achille Center for Perinatal Mental Health in Pittsburgh, a medical facility for women who are seeking treatment for pregnancy-related mental health issues. D'Achille is in good company, as Chrissy Teigen just launched Allegheny's #MyWishForMoms campaign. And as a part of the campaign, the bereaved father took to Facebook to share a heartbreaking photo of his late wife with their daughter Adriana.

"This is the last picture ever taken of my wife with our daughter Adriana," he wrote. "The following morning Alexis took her life. #MyWishForMoms is that no mom has to feel like Alexis did. #MyWishForMoms is that every mom gets to watch their babies grow up. #MyWishForMoms is that no mom feels like their loved ones are better off without them here. That no mom feels they are a burden." He went on to write that he hopes "everyone male or female that reads [the post] posts their own #MyWishForMoms for a woman they know and love."

The May 5 post has wracked up over 10K comments and nearly 100K shares.

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"Postpartum depression is not a women’s health issue, it’s a family health issue," D'Achille told Parade.com. "I have a big obligation to not only moms, but dads too. I want other husbands to know what this is and what do, and not be guessing like I was."

D'Achille's efforts to raise awareness are being magnified by the #MyWishForMoms campaign, which was created to reduce the stigma of postpartum depression and anxiety. As Allegheny points out, 500,000+ women will experience postpartum depression this year, but only 15% will seek help. Those troubling numbers are just one thing the campaign, with the voices of people like D'Achille and Teigen, aims to change.

In a new YouTube clip, Teigen sat down with Heather, a real AHN patient and mom of two who sought out help from the AHN Women’s Behavioral Health Program when she realized she was experiencing something beyond the “baby blues.” By opening up to one another about their battles with PPD, they hope to fuel a nationwide conversation—and encourage sufferers to share their stories, as well.

With hope, the #MyWishForMoms campaign, alongside Teigen, D'Achilles, and many other parents' stories, will serve to reassure those who are suffering from postpartum mood disorders, squash unnecessary stigma, and bolster postpartum mental health care on a grand scale.

If you feel that you’re in deep depression and you fear that there is immediate danger, such as self-harm or harm to your baby, please call 911 or 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433) for help. To find support and resources, contact Postpartum Support International at postpartum.net or call 1-800-944-4773.

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