i think i am depressed

I am trying to figure out if I'm dealing with baby blues or true post partum depression. Melody will be three months old this week. I am starting to wonder if it's true depression. The books say the baby blues are short lived in the immediate days following birth. I'm still struggling.

This past weekend we went to Dallas to visit friends. The purpose of the trip was to go to the Botanical Gardens to see the daffodils and tulips. I love tulips and the outting was my idea. Five friends accomodated me in this adventure, each paying $8 to see the flowers. As we strolled through the spectacular fields I felt strangely empty. I forced myself to smile with the others and to put on a happy face for the camera. Feeling sad with these friends was evidence of my true state. These are the people I can laugh with even when things suck. They are the ones I am comfortable with when I'm having the hardest of days. Yet I was still sad and heavy in their company.

I wonder if my heaviness is due to the hormone prolactin. This hormone is sometimes referred to as the "mothering hormone." It is released when breast-feeding and produces feelings of calmness, attachment and protectiveness toward the baby. My midwife told me that sometimes this hormone is connected with a mild depression that can be described as a cloud hanging over the mom during her months of breast-feeding.

It is very difficult for me to admit that I am depressed. I have everything I've been dreaming of for the past three years. My baby girl sleeps through the night so I am rested. Chad is supportive of me staying home with her. My mom loves Melody to pieces and supports me continually. I don't understand why I am sad. I have tried taking natural supplements such as B-Complex, Wild Mexican Yam Pills, Omega 3-6-9, and St John's Wort tea. Sometimes I think they help, but I'm obviously still struggling.

For several weeks I have been attributing the depression to drastic changes in my life -- having the baby, quitting my job, adjusting to being home, meeting new people, and becoming a mother. When I think of these things individualy I am not phased by them. They are all wonderful actually. There is not a logical reason for feeling sad, weepy, and overly sensetive. I have to wonder if I am truly depressed. What should I do?


Ellen said...

From what I've read-- Baby Blues are in the week or two after the birth, and mainly just wacko hormones. True post partum depression sets in a few months after birth. You might go ask Tigger over at "the art of imperfection" since she's the resident expert on PPD.

Call me.


Anonymous said...

what i have learned the past couple years, it is easy to minimize all the stressors in our lives and say that they shouldn't cause this feeling or that feeling. when in reality, those stressors are big things that do effect us hugely.
that is what i tend to do anyways, i 'll write you more email. love ya ,sky