Maternity Diaries: What Is Prenatal Depression?

Breaking Down Prenatal Depression
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Maternity Diaries: What they don't tell you when you're expecting.

So we’ve all heard of postpartum depression but what about those who experience prenatal depression? Is that a thing?

As we get closer and closer to my due date, I feel extremely overwhelmed.

Reflecting on my childhood and all the things I decide to do differently with my own child has been on my mind heavily lately. Will I do well? Will I fail? These thoughts run a race in my mind daily. The list of “things to do” before she gets here, never seem to get shorter. I find myself worried about being prepared enough–the very thing I laughed at my boyfriend for having anxiety about. I know that parenthood is not one of those things that you can be 100% prepared for. You learn as you go as a parent. Advice, social media, and TV are all helpful tools but when that bright-eyed, chubby-cheeked-drooler is staring back at you like “what do we do now?” all that knowledge can possibly go out the window.

It’s a scary and depressing feeling to be stuck in this “what if?” stage. But how do you deal without losing sleep and driving yourself crazy? I decided to go back to talk therapy. Three sessions in, I feel like I may need a super dose of “cut the s*t” talks and less mindless rants about my week all in avoidance of what I really feel. I need more intense direction and backstory, so the habits and attitude I am desperately trying to shake will finally be a thing of the past.

I know everyone isn’t too keen on laying in a lounge chair telling a stranger about their life as the counselor appears to scribble on a notepad. I can say in my experience it hasn’t been that way. I feel like it’s an opportunity to rid yourself of harbored feelings and not to your best friend who doesn’t have the courage to tell you, you’re acting like an idiot. I do need this time, and although it’s only once a week; I have the freedom to tell my therapist “okay this isn’t working”, ask for help and direction. I have created a space there, that I may not have been to create in my everyday relationships…at least not yet anyway.

I’m on a 90 action plan to help me with my goal. I have faith in this process and myself. I’m facing pre-natal depression and hormonal spats with myself as best as I can. That’s all I really can do. I know its lot of changes are going on so its expected, at least I think so. I can’t be ashamed or withdraw, this isn’t the time for that. It doesn’t mean you’re weak, just because you get overwhelmed or sad. You just have to find positive outlets and exhaust them until you are back where you need to be. You’re not alone!

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