Denial to Acceptance: Stages of Postpartum Depression

Mass media has made us think that everything is easy, from mums showing their happy life on Facebook and Instagram. All these pictures and all these posts make you question all the struggles you are going through. Am I a good mother? Why am I not like the others? Why do I feel such sadness when everybody else feels great joy? These questions fill your thoughts and make you even sadder then you were. New mothers often feel the same. Postpartum depression is a real phenomenon that affects women in all spectra. Different stages appear, but most importantly, it is treatable.

Denial stage

When a mother starts realizing the emotions she has is not what she expected, she immediately blames it on other stresses of her life. Surgery is a quite painful and tiring experience, and it makes sense to shift the blame on it. This feeling will eventually die down once you notice that the surgery is not the thing that is affecting your mood.

Anger stage

Caring for a newborn baby is not only tiresome but irritating and puts a lot of stress on your mood. Constant feeling of irritation with occasional thoughts of regret leads to anger. Spending time with your baby can look daunting, and you want to avoid it as much interaction as possible even though it will guilt you. Every time anyone mentions that you should spend more time with your baby, you want to bury them alive.

Bargaining stage

All the anger starts to brew inside you, and everyone makes you its target. You start to feel that the real problem is you, yourself. You just want to have a good night’s sleep and care for your family, but you can’t control your emotions. The state of uncontrollability will leave you in a frenzy, and you will start downgrading yourself.

Depression stage

This is the most grueling stage of the entire experience. You won’t want to wake up in the morning. You will not want to do anything with your baby. Thoughts about just leaving your house will come up. Feelings of regret will take over, like was it even a good decision being a mother? At this stage, it is important to ask for help to share your thoughts with a family member or friend.

Acceptance stage

Once you share your thoughts with your family or your doctor, they will tell you that this is not an uncommon reaction. You may hear about postpartum depression on TV or some other media source and start to seek treatment. You will be happy to learn that therapy and medicine improve your mental state overall, and you come into acceptance with everything that you went through.

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