Coping With Postpartum Anxiety


I had a difficult labor (30 hours ending in a c-section), followed by breastfeeding issues (my daughter had a tongue tie), and colic. It’s been tough. I say all this because I still feel the need to defend my postpartum anxiety.

Somewhere around the six-week mark after Mae’s birth, everything caught up to me. The sleep deprivation, the crying, the worry. I would wake up in the morning with a sense of dread and anxiety that is hard to explain. It felt like my body was simultaneously being held down by a cement block as well as stretched in a thousand directions. I wanted to crawl out of my skin. Walking to the shower felt like running a marathon.

People make you think those first days, weeks, and months of your child’s life should be the happiest of your life. And yes, I was overwhelmed with love for Mae, but I was also paralyzed by anxiety and worry. I was able to take care of Mae, but I couldn’t do a thing for myself. I wasn’t eating or sleeping. Food tasted like cardboard and sleep wouldn’t come. It was like my body buzzed with worry. I would get up, feed Mae, change diapers, sing to her, but my mind was constantly looking into the future at the next possible catastrophe. My body was going through the necessary motions for Mae, but that was all I could muster.

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I didn’t want to see anyone because I knew they’d expect me to be a new, glowing mother, and I was far from that.

I kept telling myself this was just the baby blues and it would pass. But it didn’t pass. It got worse. I was a bad mother. I couldn’t cut it. I was so ashamed. A low point that I can clearly remember is my mom spoon-feeding me yogurt and I wasn’t physically able to swallow.

I “woke up” one morning and literally thought I might die from lack of sleeping and eating. My heart was racing and my head was fuzzy. I’d forgotten to eat for 24 hours.

I hit rock bottom. I wanted to feel better for my family, my husband, and most importantly, my daughter, but I just couldn’t do it on my own. My family and husband decided I needed help. They were in pain just watching me.I was in agony.

I saw my midwife. I got on medication that’s safe for breastfeeding. I joined a support group. I took baby steps. It took two weeks for the medication to start working and those were the longest two weeks of my life. Bit by bit, I started feeling a little better. But it’s still tough some days. I still get worried about the future or trying new things with Mae, but I force myself.

I wish I hadn’t let myself struggle for so long. I wish I’d known more about the anxiety-side of postpartum. I’d always heard about depression, and I wasn’t really depressed. I was overwhelmed with worry, a worry so intense that I could barely move. What if she started crying and never stopped? What if I couldn’t soothe her? What if my breasts weren’t producing enough milk? What if her intestines were twisted? My mind was racing and never rested.

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I want other women to know they aren’t alone; that you aren’t less of a mother because of postpartum anxiety or depression. (I am still having to tell myself this daily.) But, I am strong. I never stopped mothering Mae. I’m still breastfeeding her even if it is from a bottle. And I’ve kissed her and loved her every day in spite of my anxiety.

Related post: My Journey with Postpartum Depression

About the writer

Megan Roberts is a writer, poet, teacher, and new mom--not a single job that pays well, but every single one fulfills her need to connect with others. She rants and raves about motherhood with extreme honesty at


Mary 1 year ago

Not enough people address postpartum anxiety. I had no idea something was really wrong other than exhaustion, because I’d only really heard about depression and I knew I didn’t have that. And I have a psych degree, I should have seen what it was! It took until my daughter was 9 months old for me to realize I needed help, when I became hysterical after cutting her skin while doing her nails, convinced that she would get a flesh-eating bacteria.That kind of worry and anxiety is so exhausting and ever-present, and I hope everyone who sees this and can relate will seek help in whatever way they need, be it medication, counseling, lifestyle changes, or all of the above.
For some, it is temporary and for others motherhood can expose an underlying tendency to anxiety, as in my case. I had a c-section with complications, and my own health crisis when she was 3 months old, so those didn’t help, either, and now health is my focus of worry. It is still with me, even though she is 3, but it is manageable and I have coping mechanisms. It does get better!

krissy 1 year ago

omg thank you for writing this. i didn’t even know i had postpartum depression with my first child. instead of being suicidal every day and crying, i was out of my mind paranoid and just so high wired. he ate every 2 hours around the clock, was scared of the dark, hating being on his back, hated being on his stomach, hated baths, loved discontinued gerber pacifiers, and got bored every 15 minutes. i was in hell, and so angry. everything husband did, which was A LOT, still wasn’t enough. it took me and my son 2 years before we became friends. with my third i had some postpartum depression, but i just felt blah, which was better than over anxious or suicidal (which i was suicidal the entire pregnancy but in therapy to stay okay), my girlfriend had to ‘remind me’ that i probably needed stronger or different meds, they changed me to strong prozac and i felt human again. i’m on my fourth and started my prozac again because the sadness and despair is too much for me right now w/ toddlers and kids, and a sick husband.

kc 1 year ago

This brings tears to my eyes. I can relate to every word. You’re doing great and I don’t know you , but I’m so super proud of you. Hang in there. It gets easier…

Claire McQuillan 1 year ago

I struggled with anxiety for about 18months after my first. Post-partum depression is so openly discussed, but not the anxiety. Its so refreshing to hear about the experience from someone else.

jackie 1 year ago

I remember laying on the couch, staring at my newborn son, and thinking he would be so much better off without me screwing up his life. I also took a trip to Walmart and wandered the aisles for 2 hours and couldn’t figure out where I was or what I was doing there. The anxiety took me outside of myself.

Sara Faisetty 1 year ago

Ugh where was this page (um and Facebook lol) when I gave birth to my first born!!! Thank you Scary Mommy for these awesome posts that I know will help new moms 😉

Valarie Bradshaw 1 year ago

I had pp anxiety and when I try explaining it to people they would always just nod and say “that’s just part of being a new mom”, they never saw me in the thick of it and didn’t understand the magnitude of it. This time I had it again, I kept it to myself, I recognized it right away, saw the doc without telling anyone and seeked online support. Everyone knows about ppd and that is good, they don’t judge, but the anxiety is just as frightening but not as well known.

Katherine Gansel 1 year ago

Our son came 8 wks premature, taken three days after water broke, emergency c section due to him being breech and his leg was in my birth canal…we were 5 hours away from home. my daughter (16) had to stay at home for school…(massive guilt and anxiety right there!) husband stayed until day after birth then had to go back to work. Mine hit me about 4-5 months post partum… I believe I was not only dealing with post partum depression but post traumatic stress disorder too. Extreme sleep deprivation, no appetite, constant negative thinking that I was not being a good mother to either of my children. Could take care of my sons needs but found no joy in doing so…that killed me!:(. Lost 12 lbs in a week, admitted myself to hospital because I literally COULD NOT STOP CRYING! Started taking medication and seeing a counselor. Felt better after three weeks. Kept at it through the winter and weaned myself off of Zoloft, ambien (SCARY SHIT) and anti-anxiety meds and today was his 2nd birthday! Love that little guy!

Annie Kubek Holland 1 year ago

I could have written this piece…I remember each time I walked into babies r us, the feeling of a 500lb weight would basically paralyze me. The pain would go through my chest into my back…I would curse the darkness…even trying to go for a walk with my baby would lead me to tears…doctors need to discuss this with their patients PRIOR to birth!

    krissy 1 year ago

    I agree, when I asked my doctor if my sadness would transfer to the baby via breastfeeding at my 6 week check up, I wish he would’ve done more than said ‘uh no’. And I wish doctors and tv and everyone talked about the anxiety and hyper vigilance aspect of PPD, and some of the hidden aspects.

Claire Marie Kell 1 year ago

Can identify with some of this- intense love combined with feeling sick with anxiety about the next time he woke and whether I could do it.

Gillian Hamilton-Boswell 1 year ago

Nope…nothing I can think of.

Amanda Thelen 1 year ago

SO ME. had a huge panic attack a couple weeks ago thinking it was a heart attack. Called 911. The whole shebang!

Christine Sheflin 2 years ago

I had horrible postpartum anxiety after the birth of my son. I was fine after the birth of my daughter, so I was expecting to sail through this delivery with no complications either. Wrong! I started having an anxiety reflex every time I would hear him cry, causing me to run to the bathroom and vomit. I would then force myself to go in and take care of him if no one else was around, but if my husband or mother-in-law were there, I would hide in the bedroom. My husband was sooo frustrated with me – totally thought I was just being a baby and I needed to get over it. Mother in Law told me to call the dr. I did – tried to explain things and they to me the vomiting was likely from my c-section pain pills. But I wasn’t taking any pain meds by this time. Told me I’d be fine. They totally missed the mark on this one. I ended up so scared and frustrated I called the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) at my job and cried my heart out to them on the phone asking what should I do?!?!? BEST thing ever – that afternoon two counselors from my EAP came to my house to sit with me, explained what they thought I had and brought me references for drs who could help that were covered by employee insurance. They helped me call and get an appt and they helped my husband understand what was going on so he would get that I wasn’t just a crappy mom. It took about 3 weeks to get a handle on things during which my MIL came every night like clockwork to take the baby for his evening crying session (witching hour lol) so I wouldn’t be additionally stressed. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever been through and I’m so thankful I finally got to someone who understood what was happening and intervened to help me. Don’t let anyone blow you off! If something isn’t right, keep asking for help.

Rhonda Thiessen 2 years ago

I had postpartum anxiety after my second baby and it hit hard. Everything made me anxious, I couldn’t watch the news or read a newspaper because I focused on all the bad stuff. It all terrified me and made the anxiety worse. The panic attacks were awful. I finally went on meds at 6 weeks and two weeks later I felt markedly better. I made it through with the help of amazing family and friends. No new mom needs to think she can do everything perfectly, it’s a big learning curve with every child. If you don’t feel like yourself, reach out and tell someone. Trust me there’s a mom out there who understands!

Susan 2 years ago

The Mommy Worry was the most unexpected part of pregnancy and motherhood for me. If I had known how intense and heartbreaking it would be I might have chosen not to do it. So glad I didn’t know because my little man is my world.

Lisa Smyth 2 years ago

hugs for this mama, keep talking about it. Its how we heal. Xx

Becky Whitton 2 years ago

That is exactly how i felt. Very overwhelmed, thankfully my hubby was keeping a close eye on me & i got on meds at the first signs. Only has to take them for a few months. Sadly even thou i was told they were ok to take will breastfeeding. They made my son cranky, so i had to stop breastfeeding: (

Jessica Wegrzynski Barone 2 years ago

It is a hard, lonely place to be. I was relieved to get the help I needed to manage my depression/anxiety and enjoy my last month of maternity leave and finally feel like I could celebrate my son’s birth instead of feeling like an outsider in my own life. This is a touchy subject but after having lived through it I openly discuss my postpartum experiences with all of my pregnant and new mom friends. Maybe I’m preaching but i hope that I can help someone

Elise 2 years ago

Thank you for writing and posting this! I, too, had postpartum anxiety but I didn’t know it existed. I knew something was off but I wasn’t depressed. I had a panic attack that lasted for two full days, which made me have suicidal thoughts (which was TERRIFYING) but I didn’t want to die… It was a horrible, isolating time. Thankfully with Xanax and talk therapy and my husband finally waking up to the fact I needed help, I climbed out of that hole but those were dark days indeed.

Michelle Thuldanin 2 years ago

Thank you for sharing this. The anxiety attacks were the worst thing I have ever experienced. I couldn’t care for myself or my kids. Couldn’t get it together to even get a drink of water. My husband had to go back to work and school full time four days after I gave birth. I just wished every second of every day to die. I didn’t get the help I needed and I almost didn’t make it. I could not sleep. I would just stare without hardly blinking all night, or when I tried to nap. Now I badger the crap out of new moms to see what I can do for them to make sure no one EVER feels that way while I can do anything about it.

Jennifer Gottschall 2 years ago

Postpartum OCD and anxiety are real issues that often get overshadowed by postpartum depression but they are no less frightening or debilitating. Glad the issue is being spotlighted. Thank you for writing

Domanie Schadek 2 years ago

I can relate to this so much. I never had it quite so bad, and I credit my history with anxiety for being able to recognize what was happening. I was lucky, I had support. Lots of women don’t. Hugs to all the new mommas out there who are having trouble coping. Reach out, someone will catch you!

Kelli S. 2 years ago

My Post Pardom Anxiety included crying panic attacks whenever I needed to go anywhere with my son in the car. I just KNEW we would get into an accident and he’d get hurt. Or while my husband was at work, I was terrified something would happen and I wouldn’t be able to protect our son. I talked to my family physician when my son was a little over 3 months old. The anxiety meds really helped.

Sarah 2 years ago

I too completely relate to this and my body buzzing with worry. No off switch and so fearful. I’m incredibly thankful to my parents who supported me and put food infront of me when I hadn’t eaten all day. It’s still early days for us. I’ve learnt to alleviate some worry by acting on it, ie instead of lying in bed worrying she wasn’t breathing and being overwhelmed by sadness and fear I get myself up and I just check on her. It means I can sleep a little and if the panic returns I just check again. It’s getting me through the night and for me is allowing me to function more healthily by day. Baby steps and understanding.

MrsB 2 years ago

I feel I fall under the anxiety category, but it could be the stress of pressure I put on myself to be a super mom. I’ve been at this nonstop with little to no help for 4 weeks with a beautiful little girl who has tongue tie and an over bite, and I feel it’s a battle for me to make sure she is getting enough breastmilk. (We had a bit of trouble right out of the gate with her being whisked away to NICU right after birth and then to a different hospital while I was stuck overnight in mine…even with the help of 3 lactation consultants, I still struggle but getting better)
This whole motherhood thing feels like a never ending battle that I’m losing, but I’ll be damned if I’m defeated!
Hang in there ladies and any man who stays home feeling this anxiety…

Tracy Kohorst 2 years ago

I went through this as well. On meds that seem to be working great after 2 and a half years. Was wondering when you ladies felt comfortable to have another child?

Andrea Ave 2 years ago

I took 3 different classes (parenting a newborn, newborn care, and breastfeeding) at the hospital where I delivered. Not once in any of the classes was postpartum depression or anxiety even mentioned. Thank goodness I have a wonderful mom and husband who helped me through the anxiety I experienced. More education is needed!

Shiloh Langgaard 2 years ago

All in all, we are in this together! For those that haven’t experienced this, you are so blessed! For those of us who have, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. First timers, we don’t have the slightest clue. But we are women and we are strong.

Ivy Sample 2 years ago

This was me with my first husband found me in a ball crying my eyes out after about a week of no sleep and my tongue tied son having bad colic and being very needy.i did seek help and went on I have preemie twins that are also tongue tied and I see my dr tomorrow

Catherine Brown Collins 2 years ago

After I had my son (2 now) I had a wonderful support system – mother and mother-in-law that were able to stay with me during the day so I could rest when he did, etc. I still had incredible anxiety, though, and couldn’t pin down why. Then one day as I was crying over my grilled cheese, it hit me -I needed my husband home. He was truly the only person that made me feel at ease – when he was away, I fretted until he returned. Once I figured it out, I was able to deal with it better – talking to “the moms” helped because they to had been through similar feelings. It just takes time and the realization that I wasn’t the only person in the world to have ever felt that way.

KezUnprepared 2 years ago

I had a crazy birth and pregnancy. I don’t think I was depressed but now that I think about it, I was anxious for sure. My relationship was being tested (stuff left unresolved before pregnancy and re-emerging after my child’s birth) and I also had some kind of fear of not being a good mum doing everything right for my child. All mums probably feel that, but now I realise my anxiety was probably excessive. I was worried about what every body thought of me as a mum and I was always so worried my partner would let us down. I really needed us to be good parents. I think I was trying to make up for not having a great pregnancy or birth. I felt like the actual being a mum thing was something I could at least do well if I tried really hard (probably too hard). I would almost lose the plot when my husband was a little noisy at night. I was just always on edge. I overthought everything. I am now worried that next time I’m pregnant it will come back. Ha! Anxious about being anxious! Must work on that. After reading this, I think I will be kinder to myself.

Cathy 2 years ago

Thank you! I was only diagnosed with PPA a few weeks ago. I didn’t know why I was dreading days alone with my son. At least when my husband is home, there’s someone else here to take lead.
E is now 10 months old. I knew it wasn’t depression. But I get so overwhelmed with decisions surrounding my son. What to feed him (other than breastmilk). What to do with his waking hours that isn’t boring & will stimulate his brain. Am I doing a good job? Is he learning enough? What can I do to get out of this house today? I would just cry & stress about silly things. I knew I was anxious, but didn’t understand why.
2 weeks on medication & therapy sessions to start in a few weeks. The clouds are parting.

Shana Cantrell Klinefelter 2 years ago

I was so afraid that something bad was going to happen to him that I wished he has never been born. It’s sad but you can’t lose someone that never existed. I was lucky it went away and I wasn’t like that the second time around.

Tara Schaller 2 years ago

Thank you, Zoloft. :)

Lynn M Fiorianti 2 years ago

Been there. Still going through it. My anxiety is focused on other people going through labor which I find really strange.

Cynthia A. Santiago 2 years ago

Came home with my first born wondering how I would cook, shower, make a sandwich for lunch. Breastfeeding and pumping was a whole other can of worms. One little being consumed every waking moment it seemed and changed our lives. All for the better but I can look back now and know we got through it….a total of 3 times. Thankfully sleep and I are reacquainted now. There are many trying moments. Hang in there.

Megan Roberts 2 years ago

Not at all. One in seven.

Megan Roberts 2 years ago

Thank you for sharing your stories. It was scary to put mine out there. But every time I hear someone else say “me too,” it helps some.

Erica Smith 2 years ago

Hi everyone!

My daughter is now three-and-a-half and for the first year of her life I was as close to the edge as I ever want to be. I have anxiety issues anyway, but being a new mum, sleep deprived, and with a baby who couldn’t sleep well because of chronic reflux really put a strain on me. We had problems with breastfeeding due to a weird “click” she would do with her tongue that would make me actually bang my head on the wall with frustration.

My husband was very supportive and begged me to see a crisis team. I eventually went, and they put me on medication, but I took myself off before it could do any good because I believed what society was telling me about motherhood and what women should all be able to do. I WISH I HAD LISTENED TO HIM AND STAYED ON THE MEDS!

I now regularly take an anti-anxiety medication and it has been the saving of my family!

WE can’t do it all We need the support that extended family used to supply – remember the saying “it takes a village to raise a child”. That’s because it’s hard work!!

If you are feeling overwhelmed, tired, anxious ANYTHING OTHER THAN HAPPY AND CONTENT PLEASE ASK FOR HELP!! There is no shame in being human!! I wish I had asked my mum to help sooner. It didn’t occur to me in my muddled thinking that she might actually like to look after my girl while I got a nap!

I hope this helps someone.

Thank you, Megan, for opening up and giving others a chance to share xxxxxxxxx

Cara 2 years ago

Thank you for writing this. I felt the same way after my son was born. No one in my life understood. My son is now almost two years old and only a couple of relatives have begun to be very slightly understanding. This experience has been so isolating and has shattered my confidence. My doctor wouldn’t recommend any medications whilst i am still breastfeeding and i am awaiting a therapist. It is such a relief whenever i read of someone else having similar experiences of post-partum anxiety to know that i am not crazy or lazy or failing the way i’ve been judged by some. Thank you.

Samantha Shay Epstein 2 years ago

The depression and anxiety were excruciating after my first. I was so afraid that she was going to die that it prevented me from bonding fully. I obsessed over SIDS. I had visions of my dogs ripping her apart when I went to the bathroom or left the room for even a second. I was so fortunate to have a doctor that knew me from childhood and worked with me a two weeks after she was born. I started to come out of it around 6 weeks, around the time she was baptized. The ceremony was beautiful but I think it’s mostly because the meds really started to kick in.

Dawn Lacey Cabrera 2 years ago

Thank You so much for sharing. I went through postpartum anxiety after my 4th baby. One of the scariest times of my life. The shame and guilt that I have from those months still is hard to live with.

Lianda Jane 2 years ago

Been there.

Lisa Mormile 2 years ago

I had major anxiety after my son was born. I would have panic attacks in my sleep! I was and still am afraid something bad will happen to him. He’s now 1 and a half and I still get anxiety even though I’m on medication. Thank u for this post

Kvda96 2 years ago

The depression I experienced post-partum was debilitating. I didn’t have an appetite. I could not sleep. I felt guilty about everything because my son came 8 weeks premature, weighed 3.8lbs and we were 5 hours from home. I had a 16 year old at home who could not be with us because she was starting school and a husband that couldn’t be with us because he needed to maintain his employment that would provide the full coverage insurance that would pay for our sons time in the NICU. We stayed a month before we could take him home. I felt guilty because while nursing came so easy for my daughter, nursing my son was a journey in pain, frustration, guilt and sadness. I had been pumping regularly throughout the time he was in the hospital and built up quite a stash. Unfortunately we lost about half of it on out ride home. I continued to pump and nurse for 2 months before my depression hit me full force. I stopped pumping against my better judgement and my husbands wishes but at that point I was falling so deep into my depression I could no longer make many normal decisions that I could have if I was healthy. My saving grace was the amount of pumped milk I had saved. The sleep deprivation was total. At the height of my depression I had not slept for about 5 days straight. I could not stop thinking of how sad I was. I could not stop thinking of how awful it would be if I never felt good again. I could take care of our sons needs but I lacked the ability to find any joy in taking care of him. My husband comes from a very non emotional family which also influenced the depth of my depression. I seriously believe that I was not only suffering from post-partum depression but from post traumatic stress disorder. I was told that I had lost a lot of blood during the C-Section and our son’s leg was caught inside my birth canal which made it very hard to get him out. I am a very very sensitive person who feels EVERYTHING and has an amazing amount of compassion and empathy for just about everything, but because I felt the need to be strong for our son and my family I did not get to process the traumatic events that happened before, during and after the birth of our son. So after a night in the hospital because I COULD NOT STOP CRYING, I went to my Dr. and I put myself on Zoloft and began seeing a counselor. It took about three weeks to start feeling somewhat normal which was probably the most awesome thing, besides my children, that’s ever happened to me. I always knew that depression existed in all of its forms. I am a survivor of a friends suicide. But I can honestly say that the effects of depression affects people in so many different ways. It’s REAL people! It’s real and scary. My son is two now and when I look back on everything I would not change anything. Not even my depression. I feel blessed that my son is here, that I’m still here, that my daughter is an amazing person despite the hard times we had ( she suffered from her own depression as well during that time). I’m blessed that I was able to stay with our son while he was in the hospital, (he had two or three roommates who’s parents could not be there.). I am blessed that I am well enough to look back on that time and accept it for what it was and not feel the crushing guilt and sadness that fed my depression!

Stephanie Zoro-Small 2 years ago

This article really speaks to me. I suffered from such horrible anxiety the first few weeks. Thank god the crippling aspects went away. But the anxieties of being a mom, a new mom, a first time mom, they never go away because there is no right way. I have no idea what I’m doing and just have to go with it. Such a hard lesson to learn. That and to quiet my mind. You have to keep it from running a mile a minute and be in the moment. So important to talk about!

Reina C Dowdrick 2 years ago

No. My son was a premie and he had jaundice, so we went to the doctors every day for a week. I was so scared I was going to lose him or have him taken away and, although I could feed/ bathe/ clothe him, I struggled to hold him for even fifteen minutes at a time. Even as he got older, I would have panic attacks and nightmares and dread checking on him for fear he had stopped breathing. It is pretty much worrisome from here on out

Jessica Gerhardt 2 years ago

Yes, there is. Being a new mother to a preemie or special needs child!

Mary 2 years ago

I knew within moments of giving birth that I needed to go back on anxiety meds. There is help out there, so thank you for sharing your story!

Laurie Brigger-Heller 2 years ago

Wow this is my story almost exactly from a 30hr labor resulting in a c-section, breastfeeding issues then I had anxiety and depression!!!!For so long I thought I was alone and felt guilty for how I was feeling!!!

    Megan Roberts 2 years ago

    Thanks for relating!

Denise Delamore 2 years ago

I, too, experienced postpartum depression after having my first daughter. I had a very difficult delivery (I pushed for 4 1/2 hours) and needed a blood transfusion afterwards. I saw my midwife because I couldn’t stop crying and I couldn’t eat. At the visit, another nurse asked to look at my baby and then said to me, “Isn’t it (motherhood) the most wonderful thing?” The answer I said in my head was, “No! I feel like I made the biggest mistake in the world and there’s no undoing it!” I clearly needed help and I’m so glad my midwife didn’t treat me like I was overreacting.

Jennie Belle 2 years ago

I needed this, thank you.

Kim Hicks 2 years ago

Been there. So glad you figured it out and got help!!!

Lindsey Field 2 years ago

Thank you for writing this! More education is so needed on this topic!

Megan Cooper 2 years ago

I also had anxiety after my first daughter was born. I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t focus on anything but worrying about her. I wish I had read this article then! She’s now 4, totally healthy and happy, and my anxiety has decreased immensely. I wish I would have asked for help back then!

Cara Bonsdorf 2 years ago

I had anxiety and depression but i sought help fast and im so glad i did because it got much better once i was medicated. Luckly i was so anxious i knew something was wrong with ME and was able to ask for help.

Roxann Greenlee 2 years ago

This was me all over. I didn’t sleep for 4 days after my first was born. I broke out in a rash from my neck to my ankles. I hit a wall at 6 weeks too when I hadn’t slept for more than 3 consecutive hours in that 6 weeks. I didn’t know what it was. I thought it was normal, just part of being a new mom. I actually dreaded the birth of my second child because I didn’t know how I was going to deal with all that again and have a 2 year old!

Alika Antje 2 years ago

I’m glad I read this. I still go through anxiety but I get help for it and mine started 6 weeks after I had my daughter, she’s three now. It got more pronounced when I went back to work. This is an eye opener because most people think of depression not anxiety. So think you for sharing!

Tanya Turner 2 years ago

Thanks for sharing this, it is so similar to what happened to me. More education is needed.

Visitor 2 years ago

thank you for this! still struggling almost 5 months in with my gorgeous twin girls, and thought i was the only one …

Erin Foust 2 years ago

I’ve always had a history with a high level of anxiety. Three hours after my son was born I woke up from a nap in the hospital with a racing heart and sense of dread. I knew that feeling well. It was a panic attack. Luckily, I knew what it was and immediately requested my medication be bumped up now that my son was here. It took a couple weeks but I became a much better mother this way. Get help!

Jessica Hamann 2 years ago

This is not talked about enough! Makes you feel like a bad mother. People focus on post part depression but not anxiety.

Linzi 2 years ago

Amazing honesty, very poignant and I’m just coming through the other side. Thanks for writing x

Stephani Lowery-Newland 2 years ago

Yes being the mother of teenagers!!! I don’t miss the baby years (yes I am weird and not a fan of infants) but my god at least then I could protect them and make all their choices for them, now I cross my fingers, yell make good choices when they drive off, pour a glass of wine, and bite off all my nails till they return:-/

Elizabeth Lynn Fink 2 years ago

Grateful I had a husband who had a kid from a previous marriage. I just had my first baby almost 4 months ago and I was terrified. It was extremely stressful and I was anxious leaving my son for longer than 5 min. I didn’t leave my house for the first two weeks. My husband was smart enough and kind enough to guide me through the anxiety I was feeling. It took about a month for me to relax enough to go any where with my new baby or leave him with someone to go to the store alone and know that he’d be ok. The depression and anxiety is real and its hard to over come but no one is ever alone in it!!

Melissa Diaz-Guy 2 years ago

I’m a brand new mom with a 2 and a half week old. So far I haven’t felt a darn thing. My husband and I have talked about signs that we will be looking out for. So far so good. For those of you who have suffered through that I believe you are stronger then most of us.

Christy Smith 2 years ago

I could have written this. No one tells you about any of this. The depression, the anxiety. All I heard was how great it was going to be and it was going to be all sunshine and unicorn farts but it wasn’t like that. I had the most wonderful gift in my arms but I wasn’t “there” mentally. I did what I needed for my son and that was all I could muster to do mentally. Breast feeding was so painful (another reason to feel guilt and anxiety about). My husband was deployed which added to the stress. I felt completely alone. It wasn’t until I went for my 6 week checkup that I knew something wasn’t right hormonally. I just thought it was me. After bursting into tears when the doctor asked how I was, then did I realize how bad I really felt. I still take medicine to help regulate my hormones but it’s helped more than words can say!

Tessa Lee 2 years ago

I don’t know where this “happy, glowing new mother” ever existed. We are all happy to have a healthy baby that we grew from our own flesh, but F it’s the most difficult task on the planet… Pain felt, we’ll all be ok and the best mothers in the world for our own :)

Zippo 2 years ago

Oh. My. God. It has a name? I went through this! This happened to me with my first… and I didn’t even know it had a name until now. I kept checking myself for signs of depression, because that is what they tell you all about. But I didn’t feel like I was going to harm myself or my baby… i was terrified SOMETHING would though. I played scenarios through my head, it wouldn’t stop…. one night it was worry about Zombies. Seriously. ZOMBIES! I was paralyzed by it. Why doesn’t anyone ever talk about this? I’m so sorry you went it, but thank-you very much for sharing… it has helped me so much. I’m crying. But it’s a good cry.

Lydia Quinones 2 years ago

Thanks for sharing. I had a really hard time allowing myself to connect with my son, because my very sick baby nephew died a week before my boy was born. It felt so unfair and not right that I got this gorgeous, healthy, loving boy when my brother and his wife got struggle and death. It took a long time to be grateful for what I have. Depression and anxiety suck.

Holly Young 2 years ago

I went through something similar I was so scared after I had my daughter I would just stare at her all night afraid she would stop breathing. The minute she got a tummy ache or anything that was bothering her I would just go into panic mode. I could hardly eat, sleep, or function. If she cried it would just feel like someone punched me in the stomach. I still panic a little when she wakes up in the middle of the night crying. I already suffer from anxiety and I did end up getting medication to help me cope. I am still on it and my daughter is a year old now. I wish I would have gotten help before 6 months into it. I was a wreck. I totally understand that fear. And I don’t think it ever really goes away I just think we learn how to cope a little better with it. I was terrified of everything…… I still get butterflies thinking about those first few days and months.

Traci Snyder 2 years ago

I never went through any postpartum depression or anxiety thank God! I hope this article would encourage anyone having these issues to seek help asap…no way to live. Stay strong ladies!!!

Carole Cowan 2 years ago

So sad that this mom feels she needs to defend her pp anxiety. This is a horrific experience for any new mom.

Cassie 2 years ago

This sounds like the first 6 months of my oldest son’s life. I worried constantly! I felt like a horrible mother for the longest time. Not because I felt I was doing anything “wrong”, but I wasn’t the happy beaming mommy we all envision. I also had a difficult time getting over the fact that I needed to have a C-section. Like you, I had a long labor (a little over 24 hours) and my son was stuck in my pelvis bone. There was nothing that I could do, nothing that I did wrong. I have a small pelvis and my son has a huge head (thanks to his daddy), so it just didn’t work out. So, for me, I know that the c-section had a lot to do with my worry/anxiety. I thought, “If I can’t even bring my baby into the world the “right way”, how will I keep him safe.” I also got help, wrote about my struggles, and have learned to cope. Good luck to you, and thank you for letting us all know, we are not alone!

Megan Zunk-Wasilausky 2 years ago

Thanks for sharing. No one ever really talked about postpartum anxiety or depression when I was pregnant and I felt so much shame for feeling the way I did. It’s important that the new mom gets all the support she can.

Nicole 2 years ago

This really resonated with me, I felt so isolated and clueless. I didn’t understand why I could feel so sad and empty….no one really talks about it, so it feels like you’re so alone… I didn’t so much have anxiety as I was depressed and overwhelmed. I felt like a stranger in my body. My body housed this amazing person, and now what? I started dressing way more conservatively than necessary…because “I’m a mommy now”. I stopped caring about how I looked, being dressed was as much as I could muster. Between the constant feeding and sleep deprivation, I would just start crying and wandering around the house. Then I found our at 9 wks that the pain I was having was not heartburn nor was it normal, I had severe gall stones and required emergency surgery. I was freaking out that my baby would suffer nipple confusion and nursing would be completely blown (but she didn’t and everything was fine). At 6 mths, my doctor asked me “are you ok” in a way that suggested (at least to me) that it was time to open up and say, “no, I don’t think so.” BEST DECISION EVER! He put me on meds that were safe for nursing, and within a few weeks, I smiled and fixed my hair. After another 6 mths, I was off the meds, still nursing and feeling better than ever. My baby starts Kindergarten on Monday, and I’m tickled pink!

Cayce Knudsen 2 years ago

Thank this made me feel a lot better… I be had a hard time with my second and it helps knowing it’s not just you

Casey Stephenson Scott 2 years ago

I don’t think I’ve fully recovered from this yet, and my little one is two!! This article was me word for word!!

Lex Hodges 2 years ago

I was absolutely riddled with anxiety after I brought my son home. I was worried over the most ridiculous things and had intrusive thoughts like accidentally dropping him or forgetting him at the park or something.

Rebecca Roginski-Hodge 2 years ago

You feel guilty for the depression and anxiety. Like “I’ve been given this incredible gift. I have no business feeling this way” What we need to remember is that this is a chemical imbalance. And many times we can’t correct our own body’s problems. Get help. Talk to your doctor. And if you don’t know what to say have someone you trust help describe your behavior or feelings to your doctor.

    Nicole 2 years ago

    So true…

Jo Black 2 years ago


Shiloh Langgaard 2 years ago

I was a very outgoing gal in general. I suffered depression as a teen and in my first marriage. Then met my now hubby. Didn’t have depression, but anxiety. I am now quite the introvert because of it. And honestly, I don’t mind it at all.

Lyza Daubert 2 years ago

I really like the quote “my body buzzed with worry” That was absolutely how I felt after the birth of each of my children. Much worse with the first though. Anxiety is very crippling.

Cassie Brooks 2 years ago

I spent the first two years of my son’s life thinking that there was something wrong with me. I knew I wasn’t depressed, but I also knew what I was going through was something.

Alice Underhill 2 years ago

Powerful reading.

Mallorie Whitmire Webb 2 years ago

I am an adoptive mom and my placement was an “emergency” one. I basically had 24 hours to prepare. He’s 5 1/2 now and I still feel like im sucking at motherhood some days.

Nicole Sisk 2 years ago

So poignant! I didn’t have the anxiety, but I did have the depression. I felt incredibly isolated.

Tosha Maldonado 2 years ago

Yep, c section with triplets. Two weeks later finding out you have a septic infection followed by two emergency surgeries, a stroke and paralysis on the left side of your body. Fast forward 6 yrs and my anxiety is still out of control.

Shelley Dornes 2 years ago

I hit that wall at 2 weeks. Hubby wasn’t helping me, I was feeding baby constantly, and was extremely sleep deprived. I didn’t eat anything for 3 days and lost 13 pounds because of it. I had been in labor for 26 hours and had to have an emergency c-section, for which I almost died due to blood loss. But things got better. I was eating, and sleeping, my son has gotten into a habit of sleeping from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. We go to bed at 8 now. Sure I cry at certain things sometimes, but that’s normal.

Christie Scianni 2 years ago

Went thru the post partum anxiety with my second. Counseling helped me a LOT

Maria Sol Romero 2 years ago

This was me…. New mothers should be aware of the different types of challenges they might encounter.

Elizabeth Zembilis 2 years ago

Went through it, never affected my relationship/bonding with my son but with everyone else around me. People who don’t experience it don’t understand it.

Tami Harrelson 2 years ago

Mine are 7 and 2 and I feel waaaay more stressed now than ever!!

Catherine 2 years ago

I suffer from Generalized Anxiety Disorder but I hadn’t really thought about postpartum depression or anxiety until I had my son and it hit me like a rock. I would cry from the moment my husband left for work until the moment he got back. When he was home I would make him do most things for my son because I just couldn’t face it. After I finally got help, I now feel so guilty. I feel like I lost the first year of my son’s life to misery that could have been prevented if I had gotten help earlier. When my daughter gets here in 9 weeks, I am much more prepared to know the signs and to reach out for help.

Shanel Gahagen 2 years ago

My baby is 10 months and I’m still suffering from it. :-/

    Nicole Sisk 2 years ago

    It gets better, make sure you seek professional advice. My doc put me on meds safe for nursing, and within a couple of weeks, I saw a HUGE improvement. Hang in there!

    Megan Roberts 2 years ago

    Keep seeking help. My support group is still vital.

Crystal Harder 2 years ago

The tongue tie is the worst! It makes breastfeeding so very painful!

Heather Adams 2 years ago

Yes, being a new mother and finding out something is wrong with him/her.

Shiloh Langgaard 2 years ago

Went through and still am ~ my son is now 2 1/2.

    D’Arcy Singh 2 years ago

    I sure didn’t want to press the “like” button, but I’m the same way. I have a four year old son and a two year old daughter. It was my last pregnancy that triggered the depression and anxiety. To this day. I’m glad I got help. I hope you have too.

Stacey Marle 2 years ago

Same x

H Zahid 2 years ago

This hits so close to home for me. It took me almost 4 months to realize that something was wrong with me. I was so scared that my daughter would cry and I wouldn’t know what to do. On top of that I had an aunt who kept on telling me that my daughter would die if I did this or did that. It was also a battle to breastfeed my daughter, not because of any issues I or my daughter had, but my mom and that aunt kept on telling me that I wasn’t producing enough milk. I had two wonderful friends who supported me through that terrible phase and today I am almost the confident person I was before the birth of my daughter. I still find myself getting a little bit scared, but anticipating what might happen and preparing for it the best I can has helped me step out of the house. Oh and cutting that aunt out of my life has helped too.

    Mariëtte 2 years ago

    Good for you getting back to being your confident self!


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