I inevitably suffered from PND after the birth of both my daughters. I should have been prepared for it. I should have at least been aware of the signs that I was heading to a place of darkness but I didn’t and I wasn’t. It sideswiped me.
The feeling of complete and utter failure. The self hate for the negative thoughts. The confusion that you haven’t magically bonded with your child and become a some what Madonna figure of perfect Motherhood. The dread that overwhelms you when your child begins to cry and on the worst days the way even a murmur sets you on edge. The weight of the world on your shoulders as you feel you have let everyone down, especially your new born child.
I know someone very close to me who is currently suffering. I am aware of the signs now and I want to be able to help. I want to grab her and hug her and let her know there is a light at the end of that dark tunnel she is living in. It’s a glorious light that seems so hard to get to right now but it is there all the same. Unfortunately I cant get the words out, I feel the heaviness of her heart and it gets the better of me. I’m as much a teary mess as she is, so I do it the only way I know I can and I write her a letter.
To my amazing friend,
I know you are in a bad place right now. I know you are suffering. I know sometimes things suddenly get so tough and you don’t understand why. I know that this is said to be one of the most beautiful times in your life and you feel like something is all wrong about that idea. I also know you are strong and you are beautiful and you have the ability to have the good days. You have the strength to conquer the dark days and it doesn’t just come from the right medication, it comes from the self acceptance and belief the you are worth it.
I love you, as so many of us do. You are allowed to love yourself. It will be hard but I will be here and I will help you learn to love yourself. You are a kind, beautiful and caring soul, worthy of the love we all have for you. You have done and will do amazing things. And I will be there to support you through it. There is no better mother for your children than you. You are a good mother, you can be an amazing mother. Don’t doubt your own abilities.
I know you will read this and cry and wonder where to start. I know that you have told me that you hate the person you are. I know that you want to help yourself but you don’t know where to start. I really believe it starts with learning to accept yourself and to accept that you are valuable and truly important. You have an illness, but it is an illness you can recover from. You are not your illness.
You must forgive yourself. Let go of the hurts, the hurts to yourself and others.
Your baby forgives you. Your family forgives you. They love you. They will always love you. You deserve to be loved.
I love you x