Thank goodness, it is finally being talked about openly and making news headlines, the real numbers behind post natal depression.
According to the 4 children charity ‘suffering in silence’ research paper, the number of women who don’t realise they have it is 29%; the number who are too scared to tell anyone is 33% and the number who don’t think their symptoms are serious enough is 60%…..wow!
I didn’t know what was wrong with me 26 years ago when I had my son, all I knew was that I thought everyone was going to steal him away, that people would climb up drain pipes or wysteria and break into my house to steal him and I did not tell anyone, because I thought it was real.
It has taken me 26 years to really break my silence because I felt so bad about what I did. I actually took my son away from his father, lied to him and everyone else because I thought he was going to steal him, so I left the country to get away so no-one would come and get him.
I wish to God I had told someone how I was feeling and the chances are, I may have got help, but how can you when you believe what you are thinking is real? One of my friends said she thought I was depressed when she visited me, because I had not got dressed for days and was just with my baby and not doing anything else really, not for a good few months. I had shut down and put on a really good act whenever the health visitor came to see me.
Looking back now, I know it started in the hospital because I could not have my baby out of my sight and I thought the midwives were going to take him away from me. Then it came to being at my friends house, shutting all the windows upstairs, convinced that ‘they’ were coming to get him, were going to climb up the drain pipes outside the bedroom window or the wysteria and no matter what she said, I had to have the windows shut.
I have since been told that this was a form of psychosis, and it has taken me years of therapy, years of searching for the truth to put the pieces of my shattered mind together, it has been a living hell. I am currently writing my autobiography which you can find excerpts of at http://www.ifsbutsandmaybes.com
I urge anyone who thinks they may have post natal depression to seek help before it is too late. I lost almost everything because of the state of my mind and I used alcohol to shut my head up. I am now in recovery from alcohol dependency, and have been told that it is quite common for women to use alcohol with post natal depression, which is a relief in many ways. I hope by speaking out and joining the desire to raise awareness that things will change around the stigma of such a crippling illness. Thank you to the 4children charity for bringing this to light