Baby after Postpartum Depression: Tips?

Postpartum Mood Disorders not only cloud your bonding time with your infant but they also cloud future decisions regarding childbirth.

If they choose to have another child or find themselves unexpectedly pregnant (I’ve done both), Survivor Mamas ready themselves not only for the new baby but for the very real possibility of another brush with a  Postpartum Mood Disorder.

This is one of the biggest questions I get as the Community Leader at iVillage’s Postpartum Depression Message Board.

It’s such a big question that Karen Kleiman has devoted an entire book to it entitled “Having a Baby after Postpartum Depression: What am I thinking?”

One of the wonderful women I’ve come in contact on this journey of mine has recently embarked on trying to conceive another baby. Understandably, she is concerned about experiencing postpartum depression again. She’s blogged about it here. Have any advice for her? Have you had a baby after a Postpartum Mood Disorder and not relapsed? Go show her some love. Don’t forget to leave some tips here too!


6 thoughts on “Baby after Postpartum Depression: Tips?

  1. Having had PPD 3 times, , the 3rd time less severe and short-lived, and then having a 4th baby (!) with no PPD afterwards, I have to say preparing in advance is one of the most important things you can do. Talking to your health care practitioner (in my case, only alternative therapies) in advance, setting up appointments in advance and penciling them in or putting reminders on your phone were the best thing I did. That way, even if I let the good days fool me, I’d still have an appointment to speak with someone.

    Hiring postpartum care for the first month was also a LIFESAVER. I have never had a better 6-weeks postpartum as I did this time around. It was sooo rejuvenating!

  2. I would recommend mindfulness meditation therapy as a way of helping a new mother form the same caring relationship with her depression as she would give to her baby. Its that same quality of presence and inner kindness that leads to healing for both.

  3. Stella and Lauren,

    One piece of advice that stands out to me is “Be radical about self-care”. This applies to PPD in a more preventative way ie: take your Omega 3s, Vitamin D, exercise, eat well, get support from friends and family, ask for help if you need a break and to get sleep. All of these will help lessen the chance of suffering with PPD again but there is no way to guarantee it won’t come back.

    It’s on your radar and it sounds like you have a great support group. Maybe be clear with family that you want them to tell you if they see any signs of PPD — it is a hard thing to be aware of when you are in it and they will be able to look out for you.

    Kindly, Theresa

  4. No advice and I haven’t had the experience of PPD, but it must be incredibly scary to embark upon another pregnancy with the knowledge of what may be lying in wait for you at the end. Good luck in your work to help draw awareness to PPD.

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