It's not fatigue, not a “moment of weakness” and not a whim. Postpartum depression is similar to internal invaders, and the victory depends on the support and understanding of loved ones. How to find out “the occupier” and not allow him to enslave a loved one?
"a very normal conversation with my husband may end up that I'm crying and can't stop...He was not able to understand me... all I hear is accusations and reproaches". Postpartum depression is not just fatigue, but a kind of depressive disorder. Depressed people feel unwanted, rejected, disconnected with the world. A young mother is even more difficult – she is responsible not only for themselves but also for the little man, who only came into this world.
the Reality is that every tenth woman after birth is depressed. Think about it: every tenth! And only 15% of them seek help from professionals. Most hide their suffering, pretend everything is under control, drowning in guilt and fear can not cope, to be “unworthy” of his mission. And I do not say that that fear was groundless.
the Child is not receiving much-needed emotional response, but mother just can't give it. Her fatigues fellowship with him, annoyed by his yelling, she's mad on him, and at his own helplessness. "I feel shaky when I hear the cry of his child ... Sometimes I just don't want to take him in my arms... I feel I can't be a good mother to him" is a real complaint of my client. A young mother is in despair: she cannot control plaguing her troubled thoughts, loses sleep, appetite, and even the will to live. The circle closes: the less she eats and sleeps, the more anxiety and frustration appear in her life.
Husband, mother, mother-in-law and friend, passed the baptism of fire motherhood is sounding the alarm. “You need to eat more! You have enough milk! You are wrong to wear it!” – endless advice and guidance, spilling from a bucket, “control” calls are kept in suspense. All of this everyday fuss only increases stress and guilt. The only thing a young mother wants is for everyone to leave her alone. But really need someone to understand her, shared her feelings and gave her support.
How it works?
it is Difficult to find one reason why postpartum depression occurs. Hormonal surges, violations of the regime, stress, genetic predisposition can all play a role.
the fact that a baby changes life and family relationships:
- in Addition to the married, the couple have a new role − parent. The husband becomes the primary breadwinner and can go to work, and hence spend less time with family. The woman almost fully proves the power of the maternal role.Changing the relationship between the spouses. The child becomes in the first place: his needs are attended to first. He was put to sleep in a common bed, and her father often moved to sleep in another room (if possible), sometimes for many months. Communication is impoverished: all the themes revolve around the child, and the fatigue dulls the senses.The boundaries of the family become more open to relatives on both sides. Young parents hear the advice (including the uninvited), recommendations and prescriptions – how to "properly" swaddle, feed, nurture, what you can and cannot do.Finally, the order of the day in the first days of a child's life are painted on the clock. Hygiene, rhythmic alternation of sleeping and feeding, walking, bathing... the Child in such a mode is useful, it gives a sense of stability and predictability. But for mother this life can seem endless, hopeless "Groundhog day".
Depression closes the woman access to her best self. It happens that she finds herself, feels her body live in someone else's. She can change nature, there may be unusual difficulties in the most ordinary Affairs, it can be visit unexpected emotions and thoughts. Missed phone call or a forgotten yogurt shop can cause tears. That had always pleased her and brought pleasure may seem to be deprived of every sense.
How can I help?
First of all – to be there. The nature of depression is such that it alienates man from his family. It is the most insidious trait. In psychotherapy, I try to help clients use the energy of resistance, to take a proactive stance. Perhaps now the situation seems to be a nightmare, but you can look at it differently – as an exciting adventure, fight against an alien, an evil sorcerer or a dangerous virus that tries to capture the mind of a loved one.
Unravel the “strategy” invader
- . Remember the frog that didn't jump out of standing on the fire a pot and cook. How not to let depression take you by surprise? The rule is to measure the “temperature” in the family. Talking with a young mother, ask about her feelings, acknowledge the warning signs – fatigue, confusion, irritation, long sadness and prostration. Watch out also for a.Feel the fear, anxiety, irritation for no apparent reason? Try to step back from their experiences and to analyze them. Assess the situation most clearly. Don't panic, but don't be fooled.
- . Forget the words “pull yourself together”, “keep it together”, “remember that you are the mother.” A woman in depression no strength – she needs help around the house, cooking and child. She needs time to just be alone with yourself, to do what she wants, without pressure and control. Finally, she needs emotional support. To start, try to "unload" her: finding someone with whom you can leave your child, take part of her home business, ask friends and relatives not to bother her. And most importantly – create an atmosphere of unconditional love and acceptance. Moralizing, notations and reproaches – no. Intimate conversations, long hugs, small gifts, made with love – yeah. Remember, the joint experience of emotions strengthens them.
Find your “Gandalf”
- In fairy tales and movies, heroes often save the intervention of a good and powerful magician, when it seems that there is no escape. With postpartum depression happens as well: sometimes it appears so much that without a good specialist can not do. Don't be afraid to seek the help of the therapist who will be able to choose necessary medicines and to advise you. But choose it carefully: look at his regalia, view reviews.
please Be patient.
- How is the release depends on many factors (including properly selected medications). The average period of “storming” takes from month to half a year. Relief comes early and it is important to notice changes. Rejoice in their success, as the first warm days after a harsh winter. Perhaps at first you have to look for green shoots where before there was a green carpet. But they will eventually grow a new flower garden. A ray of sunshine, pleasant melody, a delicious Cup of tea – source is needed by you and your wife of endorphins. Over time, your feelings – joy, delight, ecstasy, interest will become deeper and stronger. Resistance depression and the victory over it will be your story of overcoming, strengthening your Union, valuable experience of the cohesion and flexibility of your family.
Asel Muzafarova — psychologist at the Center for Family and child health, family therapist, business coach, specialist in emotional intelligence. Thank you Anton Soldatov for the editor.