Individuals with Postpartum depression can feel shame and guilt for how they are acting, thinking, and feeling... and it can leave them in a state they have never imagined being in.
As a mother, have you ever thought… “I’m a monster”; “I’m crazy”; “How did Postpartum depression happen to me?”
A lot of women take time during pregnancy to prepare for what is to come. This is especially true for women who have characteristics of the Type A personality, who would be described as an organizer, ambitious and a planner. For some, that can be reading all the baby books Chapters has in stock, getting ideas from Pinterest to perfectly prepare the baby room, and going to all the baby classes Google has advertised.
However, when the baby finally comes, women can experience symptoms of Postpartum depression more intensely if they have a Type A personality. The transition between pregnancy and arrival of the actual baby comes with lots of elements of uncertainty, unknowing, and change. It can start to feel like they are falling into a deep dark hole, seemingly impossible to get out of.
Women can experience lots of emotions that they have never felt before, such as uncontrollable waves of feeling numbness, brain fogs, emptiness, and constantly feeling overwhelmed with panic. They may also have intensified mood swings of irritability and anger. It can feel like turning into a monster, with the scary and intrusive thoughts coming into their head. It could be thoughts of harming or neglecting their child. It can feel like turning into someone they never thought we could or would be.
Being in this state, and being triggered by all these emotions, one can experience lots of opt-out behaviours. Opt-out behaviours are what we do to not feel the emotions. The inability to get out of bed, overeating or suppressed eating, difficult staying and falling asleep, avoiding or withdrawing from loved ones or our child, and not being able to take care of ourselves are some common behaviours.
Individuals can feel shame and guilt for how they are acting, thinking. It can leave them in a state they have never imagined being in. However, although it can feel like they are in a state of psychosis, it is not psychosis. They are not a monster, and they are not crazy. These thoughts, feelings and opt-out behaviours are a result of beliefs about ourselves (limiting beliefs) being triggered with this change in life. Some examples of these beliefs are “I am helpless/not in control”, “something is wrong with me”, or “I’m a bad person”. Uncovering and identifying the root of the beliefs can deescalate the emotions one can feel during this state of life, and can help to see the light outside of that deep dark hole.