iStock.com/SolStocWhen my first child was born, I was euphoric. After nine long months, he was finally here and I was over the moon -- at first. But then the high of birth wore off and I found myself sore, exhausted, overwhelmed, and riding a hormone roller coaster. It was really hard, and I was lucky enough that I wasn't among the one in seven women suffering from postpartum depression.
The American Psychological Association describes postpartum depression (PPD) as a "serious mood disorder" that "can make it hard for you to get through the day, and it can affect your ability to take care of your baby, or yourself." They also note that PPD can happen to any women, regardless of how easy their pregnancy was, their age, their ethnicity, or their income.
The symptoms and severity of PPD can vary from woman to woman, so we asked some brave moms to share their stories of what PPD really feels like. Read on for their raw and honest accounts -- and please contact your doctor if you think you might be suffering from PPD.
If you or someone you know has expressed suicidal thoughts, please let them know they are not alone. Text START to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741, or visit the Suicide Prevention Resource Center at www.sprc.org.