More than the baby blues?
I try hard to be what I call a Dalai Mama, appreciating my kids every day, showing patience when needed (always!), being present with them, you get the picture. Of course this little trick is not foolproof, and sometimes I am less than patient, frustrated (imagine!), even annoyed, and maybe even want to run screaming down the driveway. Last week I truly walked into the coat closet and shut the door. And I tell myself that these feelings are pretty standard across parents, that I'm not alone in my frustrations and failings (uMs have confessed our failings before, too). And I think - as much as I can know - that I'm right. But sometimes there's more to the frustration and desire to close that closet door than just the daily joys of parenting. A friend recently wondered:
Something has not been right with me for months. I've been feeling mentally exhausted, I'm irritable and short tempered with my family, and have just become gradually more and more disinterested in my life. I constantly have these fantasies about running away from it all. And while I wouldn't (run away from it all), I am getting tired of having these negative feelings. I'm not sure if I'm actually depressed or not, having not taken the step to speak with a professional, but I am curious about the experiences that others have had with anti-depressants. Why did you start taking them and how have they worked? How long have you taken them and are you glad you did? How did your feelings and emotions shift? Where there any negative side effects?
We've talked about post-partum depression before, but what about this post-post partum depression (not to be confused with clinical depression or serious mental illness). In this case it seems like less than that, but perhaps more than the common frustrations of parenting small children. Got any advice for this mama?