The times when I have been most vulnerable to depression recently have been after giving birth. Having made it past the initial few months after Wonder Girl’s birth feeling pretty stable and happy, I thought I had escaped the dreaded depression this time. I have blogged in the past about my experiences with Cyclothymia here.
However unfortunately this was not to be. I’m gutted on many levels. Firstly, I feel like I’ve failed my own imaginary test; Can Ella have a baby without getting depression? Answer: Apparently not!
Secondly, I have failed my family. The people I love the most in the whole purple-furry-world. Without being arrogant, I am the one in my family with masses of get up and go. I inspire holidays, days out, parties etc. I also run the day to day stuff, like coordinating everyone’s commitments and making sure they all happen. On top of that I do the majority of the cooking, cleaning and laundry. I say all this not to boast (my husband works long hours running his own business to make all this possible) more, that if I go under its hard for my family to operate. Queue the guilt.
So, it has been proposed that I take antidepressants. On paper this seems like a sensible idea. I am depressed therefore anti depressants seem an obvious solution. Strange then that I find myself resistant to taking them. Exploring why, I came up with the following reasons.
First up, I don’t even like taking paracetamol for a head ache. I don’t like putting toxic things in my body, at all. My antidepressants come with a side effects warning sheet that would put the Cookie Monster off cookies should they come with the same. Also I’m breast-feeding at the moment, and though the Dr. assures me these are fine for breast-feeding, it doubles the anxiety I feel about putting this stuff in my body.
Next, I am not depressed(!). Contrary to my Dr.’s opinion what I am suffering from is definitely a case of being a useless human being and worse mother. I am constantly questioning the diagnosis and wondering if am I just making excuses for my moody behavior. Ergo antidepressants will not help.
On top of all that I am massively embarrassed about all this. I blog about it, to help other people who might not be able to put into words how it feels. Underneath this bravado I am ashamed. I don’t want the world to view me as an unstable person. I don’t want to be judged by this. If I take the antidepressants I am admitting that I am this person, who cannot cope without them.
So I open it up to you, my readers. What would you do in my position ? Am I alone in feeling this way about my depression ? I’d love to hear your views.