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Reader Question: The Baby Blues

Reader Question: The Baby Blues

On my Here’s How to Raise a Baby post, reader Diane Davis asked:

“Have you had any sadness or baby blues?”

 

Thanks for the question, Diane!

I’m going to start off by saying that I’m not a doctor, so any advice is strictly based on my very limited experience – but this is an important topic that deserves attention. “Baby blues” and “postpartum depression” are two different things. Anywhere from 70 to 80 percent of mothers get the baby blues and it usually only lasts a couple weeks after giving birth. If you’re experiencing these feeling for longer than that, please, please, please from the bottom of my heart, go find help. You may be suffering from postpartum depression and you don’t have to suffer alone. Do it for me, ok?

Being a new mum is one of the most overwhelming experiences I’ve ever had. Even though I had nine months to prepare, there’s really no way to understand just how much your life is about to change until you’ve given birth. I love my son more than anything, but some things will never be the same again. Maks and I can still go out on dates, see our friends or head back to work, but for the most part, my thoughts, my time, my purpose, and my body are all dedicated to the care and wellbeing this little person. It’s a lot to wrap your head around in such a short period of time.

Whether it’s the baby blues or just crazy hormones, there were a lot of tears in those first couple of weeks. I felt like a failure when I couldn’t get Shai to sleep right away because I couldn’t figure out why he was crying. I felt broken when I was having trouble squeezing out enough milk to feed my son because my boobs had gone rock hard and my nipples bleeding from a plugged duct. I felt disgusting the first time I looked at myself in the mirror and all I could see is this body that I didn’t recognize with a huge stomach, engorged breasts and cellulite thighs.

You know what helped? Trusting the people around you and time. I felt like a failure because I wanted to be a good mother, so I sought the advice of good mothers around me. I felt broken because I thought I wouldn’t be able to provide for my son, so I kept working and trying until I was able to get the amount of milk he needed. I felt disgusting because my body was different, so I let Maks know how I was feeling and hugged me and told me how amazing this thing I just did was and let me know how much he loved me until I felt like the most beautiful person in the world.

So, yes, baby blues do happen – even for optimistic people like myself. You just have to give it time and take time for yourself. Cry if you need to and let yourself be vulnerable, but know there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. It’s still your life, just with a little bonus.

I love hearing from my fans and readers! If you have any questions or topics you’d like me to talk about, comment or use the contact form to submit an editorial inquiry.

Photo Credit: Stefania Orru

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  1. Peta,

    As a new mom of a seventh month old, I see you. So many parts of your post resonated with me and my first few weeks as a momma. We have one of the hardest jobs in the world, but it’s definitely the best one. Mommas definitely need to lean on each other during the hard times! Thanks for sharing!

    -Amber

    Posted by: Amber Krusza on March 30, 2017 at 7:57 am
  2. Hi Peta,

    Thank you so much for sharin your story. I have a six month old and when she was born I too had the baby blues. I still struggle with loving my “new body”. I had a c section so I’ll forever have an alteration to my body even if I lose my pregnancy pouch. I look at it often and over time I’ve learned to embrace the scar. It’s like my warrior scar.
    Thanks again for sharing. It was really encouraging.

    Posted by: Taryn on March 30, 2017 at 6:41 am
  3. Hi peta! Can i say that u looked absolutely BEAUTIFUL on DWTS! I loved reading your posts on allthingsfam&glam 🙂

    Well, just to share a bit of my personal experience, the baby blues are real and breastfeeding can be (very) challenging. I cried most of the days during the first month after my baby was born back in 2013. Baby’s poor latching technique, engorged breasts, forceful let-downs that caused baby to choke,cracked nipples etc. Boy, it wasnt easy *phew* . I kept telling myself to “be patient” and “keep going” as i was trying my best in being a first-time-mom. It got better in time and rewarding in the end as i abled to breastfeed my baby for more than 1 year 🙂

    Shai is very lucky to have both Maks and you as parents. May God bless your little family and enjoy your motherhood journey. Xoxo

    Posted by: RMH on March 30, 2017 at 1:17 am
  4. Peta you look wonderful and I know, that you’re a wonderful mom…Lots of women have the baby blues, especially when they have so much to get done…
    See you Monday on DWTS…
    Hope that Maks’ calf heals…

    Posted by: IrishLady on March 30, 2017 at 12:45 am
  5. Truth. All of it. You are not alone. There’s so much with getting pregnant, being pregnant, going through labor and delivery, post-partum bodies and minds and hormones. The sleep deprivation. And breastfeeding. I thought it was just suppose to be so natural and easy….nope, there is a learning curve for baby and mom. With the first baby, you are re-inventing yourself with the title of Mother along with all of the other titles you had before. You have to find a new normal and you will. Much love to you Peta and to al over new mom’s out there. ❤

    Signed,
    Mom of 3….(a 15 year old, 11 year old, and 8 year old)

    Posted by: Suzanne on March 29, 2017 at 11:39 pm
  6. Hi Peta,

    Thank you for sharing your struggles as a new mom. I think it’s important to share your feelings with others.
    Being a mom is the best and hardest job you will ever do. My daughter will be 6 months next month. I’m still learning new things every day and have my struggles.
    The best thing to do is share your feelings with your family and friends. As well as getting advice and support from other moms.

    By the way I love DWTS!

    Good luck this season

    Posted by: Melissa on March 29, 2017 at 11:37 pm
  7. Hey Peta! I just had my first child, a baby boy, about seven weeks ago. In just a few short weeks I am returning to work after nine weeks off with him. I’m not prepared for, nor am I looking forward to it. How did you handle returning to work and not being with your little one all day?

    Posted by: Dani DeGarso on March 29, 2017 at 10:57 pm
  8. I am not a new mom. My kids are a bit older now and I work in the field of children and families. I still remember all the things Peta said and talked about and those feelings. Just know that it passes! So enjoy the good things with your new babies that will only happen once, because it will all pass by so quickly! It definitely helps to have a wonderful and supportive person by your side. Sadly, I did not, but I still made it through and you can too!

    Posted by: LC on March 29, 2017 at 10:19 pm
  9. You are so amazing! Having someone who is in the spotlight come out and address all these new things that’s happen after we become mothers is so comforting! I have a 16 month old and still struggle with post partum anxiety. I love my daughter more than anything in the world, but life really does change. And having someone like you, who I idolize very much (I am a dancer/choreographer) talk about these issues is amazing. So thank you! Shai is a mini Maks and he’s the cutest! <3

    Posted by: Ashley Rudolph on March 29, 2017 at 10:06 pm
  10. It was such a special time to watch you and Maks as you went through this pregnancy and birth as such devoted, loving and caring parents. To see the love and joy you both show with your adorable baby boy is a true blessing. Keep sharing your posts. Prayers for you three and special prayers for Maks as he deals with his leg injury. Pray it heals soon with no sfter affects.

    Posted by: Judy Bailey on March 29, 2017 at 9:24 pm