Firstly I’m so sorry that it has taken so long to write this last post in my PND saga. If I have any excuse it is that I have been very busy, but more on that in a later post.
Having this post outstanding has made me hold off on writing a whole bunch of posts that are rattling around in my head. Hopefully now that this is out the way I will be posting a bit more frequently.
So onwards with treatment plan for dealing with PND.
I took all the advice I was given by my circle of mamas and found a nice wholistic approach to deal with my depression.
I found myself a psychologist to chat to. This helped in the short term to give me a safe space to vent, which really let me let go of some of the guilt and frustration I was feeling. Once I was out of crisis mode I found that the advice she was giving me wasn’t all that realistic but then perhaps my expectations of myself as a twin mom were also unrealistic leading me to the point of being incapacitated by fatigue. It really helped being able to say; “I’m just not coping, this is so much harder than I ever imagined.”
Then I also went to my GP and asked her to prescribe an antidepressant. She put me on Lex.amil which really has worked a charm. It was strange for me to go onto a antidepressant, I think of myself as a very happy upbeat person. So the fact that a. I was depressed and b. that I needed chemical intervention made me feel very disempowered. Now I can see the usefulness of medication although I believe that one shouldn’t be on antideps indefinitely. They really are just an intervention to help you get over a period of crisis and learn new coping mechanisms. After about a week the pills started working and by a month later I was feeling more and more like my old self. I still have spells of melancholy but they pass soon enough without leaving me incapacitated. I haven’t noticed feeling emotionally flat as some people have described happened to them while on antideps, if anything I am more happy and motivated. Maybe it is Lex.amil that just works particularly well for me.
I also made sure I got out the house regularly. At first I was strict about going out for an hour or two everyday, whether it was out for coffee with a friend or to the shops. As things have settled I have found that it is no longer neccisary for me to go out quite so often.
Then there is talking. There is a stigma surrounding depression and very few people ever really talk about it, even more so with postnatal depression. For some reason as women we are expected to tell everyone how wonderful it is to be a mother and when the reality is different from the marketing hype it leaves you feeling very isolated. Once I started reaching out and speaking to people about my PND I quickly realised that it affects a lot more people than you would expect. More than half (probably 75%) of my mommy friends had PND to varying degrees. My question is that if it is so common then why does no one ever talk about it?
If there is one thing I’ve learnt it is that I have a lot more support than I realised, and I am grateful to every single person, in real life and online, who has helped me with words of encouragement and love while I was fighting this horrible illness.