Problems After Giving Birth

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

I don’t know what is wrong with me. Since I gave birth to my daughter 15 months ago, I’ve felt so different than my usual self. I’m more agitated, moody, unmotivated, tired, sad,and achy. I constantly fight with my husband and tell him how I am not happy with him anymore,and how I am tired of being at home all the time. Then I feel so sad after I see him cry I go over to him and hug him, and think to myself how I cannot believe those words just came out of my mouth. I hardly want to play with my daughter, I feel so tired all the time, so unenergized. I wake up and think to myself what is the purpose of this day again. I get so bored of the same things, even though there are things I have to do, like cleaning and cooking. I cry all the time because I feel so desperate,unhealthy, and tired. I try to make an effort to do something about it, but nothing I do seems to work.

Also, I’ve been getting lots of migraines with auras that are so painful and annoying. I don’t know if there is something really wrong with me or if I’m just overreacting like my husband says. But I feel that there is, I don’t enjoy life like I used to at all anymore. I feel so fat, I hate to dress up and go out so I prefer to stay home. I have no friends since I’ve moved here with my husband 2 and a half years ago. I don’t know I just feel so helpless. I don’t want to live like this anymore. Please help me I’m desperate to find out what is wrong with me!

A. I do not agree with your husband who believes you’re overreacting. You may be suffering from postpartum depression. According to U.S. government statistics, approximately 13 percent of woman experience postpartum depression. It is thought to be caused by changes in hormone levels. The depression you’re experiencing may also stem from the shock and reality of having a child. Postpartum depression is a very real condition that typically gets better with treatment. I would strongly suggest that you seek treatment for this condition.

You also mentioned that you have migraine headaches with auras. You did not detail whether the migraines are a condition that you have received treatment for in the past or if they are a new symptom that has recently emerged. In either case, you should have these migraines assessed by a doctor.

Postpartum depression is a condition that should not be ignored, minimized or chalked up to an overreaction. Please make an effort to see a physician, psychiatrist or a therapist for help with this issue as soon as possible. Also, be sure that you have a physician evaluate why you’re experiencing migraine headaches. Thanks for writing.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 12 Jan 2009

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2009). Problems After Giving Birth. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 22, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2009/01/12/problems-after-giving-birth/