Every fortnight on a Thursday some lovely women from our church run a group called MOPS (mothers of preschoolers) where the kids get looked after in creche and the Mums get to have a coffee, listen to someone talk on a different topic each week, then do a little crafty activity. It’s a lovely supportive group of Mum’s and the topics are always relevant.
Today’s topic was post natal depression. I don’t think anyone in the group had not been affected in some way, whether themselves or someone close to them. Some great discussion and emotional sharing was had and it just made me realise, again, that this topic is just not talked about enough! It can be a little shameful and maybe just too hard to talk about, but it affects as many as 1 in 7 women! Those are pretty big statistics.
PANDA – Post & Ante Natal Depression Association - has some great resources, along with a 24 hour helpline. I’ve just had a little look through and there is some great info for those who think they may be suffering from PND as well as info for those who suspect someone they know is showing signs.
Apparently it is also very common for men to have PND. It makes sense.
The best thing that we can do is to just listen, as motherhood (or fatherhood) is so different for everyone and quite frankly, it is the most difficult/draining/challenging thing that I have ever done! I sometimes wonder whether there have been times in my experience as a mother that have gone undiagnosed as PND….