For me, trying to cope with postpartum depression (PPD) was pretty unbearable. I honestly have no idea how I survived. At a time when I was supposed to be happy about my new baby, I felt like I wanted to die. For me, one of the hardest things was saying the words "I think I have PPD," especially to my partner. It was as if admitting I wasn't OK meant that I wasn't a good mom and, in turn, not saying the words out loud could make it all magically go away. Unfortunately, depression just doesn't work that way, and the longer I kept my mouth shut, the harder it was to say something.
To make matters worse, when I finally told my now ex-husband how I felt, he was not supportive at all. When your partner says, "I'm depressed," or, "Something's not right," there are things you should absolutely say in response. He didn't say any of them. Instead, he said things like, "Why can't you get over it?" and, "You wanted a baby, didn't you? Why the hell aren't you happy now that she is here?" You might think he was a total jerk for saying these things, but honestly, it wasn't anything I hadn't already said to myself. Those first days were full of challenges: difficulty breastfeeding, newborn jaundice, and sleep deprivation, but the worst was being left alone to recover from childbirth and care for a new baby. I was sad and anxious all of the time, and was convinced that I was a bad mom.
This time around was totally different. Not only was my current husband totally on board with me getting help for my postpartum depression, he actually came along to make sure I felt supported throughout the entire process. It made a huge difference. In little ways, and with few important words, he let me I wasn't alone. So, what should a grown-ass man (or person of any gender, really) say if their partner says, "I think I have PPD?" Here are few good places to start: