This is for every mother out there today suffering from a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder and psychosis. It will get better and we will change this system to make sure you get the help you need fast. We are honored to introduce you to Amy, mom of twin boys. 

For a long time, I couldn't even admit I was depressed, and then I couldn't admit it was post-partum. That seems silly now. I got a little angry, I probably could have gotten help much sooner if someone had seen the signs..

It probably didn't help that I struggled with infertility for a year before finally conceiving via IVF. My husband and I had been warned about the dangers of a multiples pregnancy so we agreed with the RE to have one embryo transferred. In a giant cosmic joke, it split and I was pregnant with identical twins. The pregnancy became complicated. In the 3rd trimester I spent 3 weeks on home bed rest, 4 weeks on hospital bed rest, and 2 more weeks on home bed rest before the babies were finally born at 36 weeks gestation. Luckily, our sons were (and are) healthy and able to come home a couple of days after their birth, no NICU. I was less lucky, with a moderate hemorrhage that left me weak and anemic for months after the birth. 

Life with twin infants was busy, though they were good babies. They put themselves on the same schedule, and they didn't have any colic or reflux. They did wake to eat every 3 hours like all infants do, and even though my husband and I took shifts, and we figured out early on how to feed them simultaneously, the sleep deprivation took its toll and I believe that was the main trigger for my depression. 

Around 5 months old they went through an awful phase where they decided to wake every 2-3 hours again (after having been going 6 hours between feeds overnight), and not even to eat, and they got out of synch and leapfrogged, so someone was always up every 2 hours and this went on for 4 weeks. 

I went to see my OB and asked if I might have PPD, as I was a wreck and crying all the time, including at work, which I had gone back to full time when the boys were 3 months old. She said I was just exhausted, which though was true, was misleading. She DID say that if I didn't feel better, to come back and she would call it PPD and deal with me, but about 3 days after that visit, they started sleeping through the night for good, and I did feel a bit better for a while, so I carried on.

But overall, things didn't get better, they steadily got worse. Sure, I was getting enough sleep now for the most part, but I wasn't happy. I lost interest in everything that I used to find fun. I didn't care about my appearance (I didn't get my hair cut for 8 months.) I had zero libido. I wasn't interested in seeing my friends. Emotionally, I was frozen in a giant block of ice. I was functional, I managed at my job well enough, and I made the children my top priority. I think that's why no one really noticed I was such a mess. My husband noticed, because I was pushing him away...I almost wrecked our marriage. 

When the children were around 22 months old, I finally recognized that I needed help and got it. I got a script for Welbutrin, and found a therapist. I am happy to say that between the two I am fully recovered now (several years later, the children are now 4 and a half years old) and my marriage is strong again. I wish my OB had seen the PPD for what it was when I was there 6 months post partum, but maybe it wasn't officially PPD then. I wish I had the presence of mind to realize I needed help sooner. I don't think I am a very good actress, but I guess I hid this very well, or else no one wanted to get involved. I have no idea. I am calmer about it now, but I regret that I didn't enjoy my children's babyhood as much as I could have. I am sorry that I spent so much time depressed when I could have gotten help and felt better sooner. I am done having children, but I know the signs of depression now, and if I find myself heading that way for any reason, I will certainly get help without delay.