Many ladies have told me that they have felt even more guilt and reluctance to admit to postnatal depression if they have had a struggle to get a healthy baby.
If ladies have needed fertility treatment to conceive and may have had several unsuccessful attempts before having their child or they may have had previous miscarriages, everyone around them will be aware of how important their child is to them. The expectations of motherhood are likely to be even higher and therefore the crashing reality of postnatal depression can be even more immense.
Mothers will feel almost ungrateful for the baby – like a spoilt child who does not like a present they have pinned for. Therefore may feel totally embarrassed and ashamed to admit any negative feelings towards the baby or for themselves. How on earth can they tell anyone that they do not love their baby after all the ‘hard work and heartache’ to be a mother?
My advice is that you MUST get help like any other mother. Please try not to feel ashamed – you are not well, not a naughty child. Suffering in silence will compound the problem so please tell someone how you feel.
If you know someone this has happened to, please be aware that comments such as,
‘But you’ve always wanted a baby? I am surprised you have got postnatal illness!’ are NOT helpful.
Hope’s Place offers a free counselling service for women who have experienced a miscarriage or still birth, and can help with any other issues that arise during and after pregnancy
Research article on risk factors for antenatal depression, postnatal depression and parenting stress can be found at
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