At the age of eighteen I was diagnosed with Dysthymia. I can’t stand the labels of things, but I also value that they help make murky ideas a little bit more clear. Dysthymia is a mild form of depression, mostly manageable without medication. It is very real, but not necessarily incapacitating. The trouble with this kind of depression is that, because I am used to being just a little less joyful than the average person, a true season of deeper depression can sneak up on me pretty easily.
Dysthymia has also made me more susceptible to severe postpartum depression (PPD). I didn’t know that when we decided to start having kids, so rather than being snuck up on by a depressive season, I was tackled by a huge linebacker of darkness and self-loathing after the birth of my first daughter. I was deep under the weight of it and we really weren’t sure if I would make it out or if our marriage would still be intact if and when I did.
In today’s episode of The #staymarried Podcast Tony and I answer two questions back-to-back. Both are pretty heavy. One listener asked about navigating PPD, and another asked about coping with and helping their partner cope with past trauma and abuse. Because these issues have been intertwined in my life and then in our marriage, we’re talking about it all. Below I will also link to older posts where Tony and I have also written about some of these experiences, in case reading is more your thing or you’d just like more detail and resources after you listen.
Here’s Season 2, Episode 7 of The #staymarried Podcast…
Many marriages experience the rough waters of mental health struggles, bringing home a new baby, job loss, moving away from family and friends, and a number of other challenges. We believe strongly that these challenges can be weathered together and don’t have to cause the end of a marriage. It takes some skillful navigating, and we’re here to help.
In this episode we listed some of the symptoms of postpartum depression, as well as “baby blues” and postpartum psychosis. We really believe these signs and symptoms are things everyone should know and be able to look for, not only in themselves and their partner, but also in their friends and loved ones. Any kind of mental health issue can be so isolating, and we know that isolation only makes things worse. Please PIN THIS so that you can share it and come back to it yourself in case you ever need it.
We hope that by sharing our story and experiences we can do our part to tear down the stigma of mental illness so that those of us that need it aren’t quite so afraid to reach out for help and support. Let’s be brave by naming our brand of crazy so that others know they can name theirs and not suffer alone.
Want to read more about this topic? Check these out…
♥ Living With My Partner’s Baggage – by Tony Peterson
♥ The Reason I Take A Million Pictures
♥ Lost in the Fog: Guest Post by Carmen Meeks
♥ “My goal is to not die…” – Postpartum Depression and Our Marriage
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