For the past nine months, hormones have run rampant through your body, affecting every aspect of your life. Your brain has been remapping the way you eat, think and function. All to aid in the safe and healthy growth of the tiny human that grew inside of you. Not an easy task, by any means. But now your baby is gone. A cascade of emotions wash over you; a confusing mix of relief, anger, fear and sadness. Tears stream down your face as you sit alone in your bedroom and rock yourself back and forth. What do you do now?
You are not alone. There are ways to deal with Postpartum Depression, and to get through it. Adoption Choices of Oklahoma is ready and available to help however we can. To offer counseling, guidance and support. We are here for you.
5. Utilize Your Support System
Who are the people who supported you during your pregnancy? Stay connected with them. Call them on your more challenging days. They will be an important and essential lifeline in helping you get through the first few months after delivery.
Don’t be afraid to both ask for and accept help. Fight the urge to completely isolate. Reach out. You don’t have to suffer through the symptoms alone. Because you aren’t alone. It might feel that way, but it’s not true. That’s the depression talking. In truth, you are surrounded by people who love and care for you. Who are there for you. That’s what your support system is there for.
4. Indulge in Simple Pleasures
With your friends and family fueling you with energy, don’t forget to indulge in life’s simple pleasures. You’ll be amazed how the littlest things can make big impacts. What are things that bring you joy in life? What makes you happy? Do those things. Treat yourself to a morning walk, a nice country drive, a day trip to the beach. Go shopping. Get your hair and nails done. Schedule a massage.
Whatever makes you feel alive — do it. Even though life will never again be what it used to be, focusing on those things is crucial. It will help your brain healthfully regroup and ease you back into your regular routine, and a new sense of normal.
3. Join a Support Group
If you feel like you need something beyond the support of your friends and family, that’s ok. Another helpful way to deal with Postpartum Depression is through joining a support group where you can connect with other moms. Ones who have and are currently going through a similar journey.
It’ll provide a safe haven for you to fully express your grief and to find healing along with the other women there. Just think of the amazing friendships you could make through this group as well! You could find a true kindred spirit, and establish a life-long connection. Or you could be inspired to start a new mom’s group of your own.
2. Stay Positive
The depression aspect of PPD can trick you into believing that life is hopeless. That there’s no way out, that things will never get better, and that you’re a horrible mother for “giving your child away.” Don’t give in. It’s wrong. It’s lying to you.
Instead, for every negative thought, focus on a positive one. You placed your baby for adoption. Made a plan for his or her well-being so that they could have a better life. He or she is now with their new family. Happy. Healthy. Safe. Everyday, remind yourself that you made the best and most selfless choice you could. That choosing adoption does not make you any less of a mother. That you and your child are both incredibly loved. Valued. Say it over and over to yourself. The more you do, the more you’ll grow to believe it, which, in turn, will vanquish the depression.
1. Self Care
Perhaps one of the most important ways to deal with Postpartum Depression is through practicing self care. Giving birth is an excruciatingly physical and emotional process. Your body will need time to recover, particularly in the first few days and weeks, depending. Be gentle with yourself, and make sure you are eating. Even if you don’t feel like it, your body requires the nutrients to heal. You’ll also need to take it easy and make sure that you are allowing yourself time to rest. This goes beyond just getting the proper amount of sleep. It means easing back into your typical routine. Housework can wait. So can your next exercise session.
Having a baby isn’t like getting over a cold. You won’t be able to resume your day-to-day right away. It’ll take a few months to get back to what you were doing before. But that’s ok. Be patient. You’ll get there.
Ways to Deal with Postpartum Depression
Navigating through the symptoms of PPD can be taxing. It can take a lot of physical, mental and emotional energy. Especially day in and day out. But guess what? There’s good news! PPD is treatable. Many women show improvement after six months.
Adoption Choices of Oklahoma
If you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of Oklahoma. You may visit our website here or call 405-794-7500 (Oklahoma City) or 918-982-6220 (Tulsa).
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Rachel Robertson is a published journalist, book editor, certified Publishing Specialist, and aspiring novelist. She graduated from Central Washington University (CWU) in March 2011, having found her writing voice within the Creative Nonfiction genre and grew to work as a freelance book editor for small presses all across the United States.
In June 2018, she embarked on an internship with Virginia Frank and came on board with Adoption Choices Inc., Not for Profit 501(c)(3), in December 2018. Between her mutual passion with adoption and surrogacy, and her own personal history with adoption, Rachel is excited to research and share topics each week that will spread awareness and better serve the faithful patrons of Adoption Choices Inc.
When Rachel isn’t haunting her local Starbucks or Barnes and Noble, she’s avidly pouring over her Writer’s Digest subscription or cozying up with a cup of tea and a book. She currently resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her beloved wife and Border Collie.
Marcin, Ashley. “How to Deal with Postpartum Depression: Diet, Exercise, and More.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 5 Apr. 2019, www.healthline.com/health/depression/how-to-deal-with-postpartum-depression#stay-connected.
Nichols, Hannah. “Postpartum Depression: Tips for Coping with It.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 7 Nov. 2017, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320005.php.
“Postpartum Depression and the Baby Blues.” HelpGuide.org, 2 Aug. 2019, www.helpguide.org/articles/depression/postpartum-depression-and-the-baby-blues.htm.
“Postpartum Depression.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 1 Sept. 2018, www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/postpartum-depression/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20376623.
Reinhardt, Anne-Sophie. “How to Tap Into the Power of Positivity.” Lifehack, Lifehack, 29 May 2019, www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/how-to-tap-into-the-power-of-positivity.html.