Vanessa’s Postpartum Depression Story

My postpartum depression story begins with the pregnancy of my second child.  I had a mild case of the baby blues with my first and, at the time, I was very worried about my mental state.   Little did I know, it was nothing compared to the dark path that is postpartum depression…

*This post may contain affiliate and/or paid links which means that if you click on one of these links and buy a product, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Rest assured that I only recommend products that I love from companies that I trust.

**Furthermore, I am not a medical professional and nothing in this post should be taken as medical advice. I am simply a mother who has been there and lived to tell the tale.


The pregnancy test came back positive shortly after my only sister got engaged.  I was devastated.  Now, I was going to have to stuff my postpartum body into a breastfeeding-friendly bridesmaid dress.  I wouldn’t get to drink and party all night.  It sounds selfish and it was.  But I really wanted that one last hurrah before becoming a mother of two.

I should have been thrilled that I was pregnant again because before conceiving my first child, I miscarried twice.  I grieved for those babies and would have given anything to meet them.  And if I had gotten pregnant after my sister’s wedding, then I would have been thrilled, but…

the timing could not have been worse.

I contemplated terminating the pregnancy but just couldn’t do it.  So I secretly hoped that I would miscarry instead.

For a while, I ignored the pregnancy.  I didn’t count weeks or read books like I had done with my first.  I, once again, suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum, which made me resent the pregnancy even more.  Being so sick meant that I couldn’t take care of my toddler son or cook for my husband.  The guilt started to pile up.  At the end of my first trimester, the baby was thriving and I was sick, dehydrated and depressed.

11 effects hyperemesis gravidarum has on a pregnant body
Find out more about this debilitating condition

I sought help for what my doctor described as prenatal depression(depression during pregnancy).   I saw a therapist once a week, but I don’t feel like I got much out of our sessions.  If anything, it was just a safe place to cry for an hour.  When my doctor asked if the sessions helped, I lied and said yes because I didn’t want to be difficult.

Perhaps it would have helped if I had known what to look for in a therapist.  To read more about the difference between a therapist and a psychologist, check out this article from Better Help – https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/psychologists/what-is-the-difference-between-a-therapist-and-a-psychologist/

Why did I lie?

Somehow I managed to fake smile through the 9 long months.  I chose to deliver at a birth center with a midwife.  I never told them about the prenatal depression.  They were mothers themselves and they thought of birth as beautiful and natural – I didn’t want to be that one pessimistic mother with mental health issues.

My daughter was born in 2 hours and 4 minutes from the start of the first contraction.  I barely made it to the birth center, in fact I was certain I would deliver in the car on the way there.  It was the single, most traumatic experience of my entire life.

Read more about it here.

The first few months after she was born were similar to the 9 months of pregnancy…

I didn’t think too much about it.  I didn’t feel too much about it.  I fed her and changed her and did all the things for her that I needed to do but I didn’t connect with her nor did I feel any desire to. I made sure to keep busy so that I didn’t have to spend too much time with her.  I played with my son while I nursed her and rarely made eye contact with her.

I wasn’t sad, but I wasn’t happy either.  I felt zero emotions when I was with her.


My sister’s wedding came and went and I fake smiled and showed off my beautiful baby girl and put my hand over my heart when everyone told me how blessed I was.

And then, I wasn’t so busy anymore.  And all of the emotions that were locked up over the past few months wanted out.  Instead of feeling nothing – I felt everything – as though I was carrying the world on my shoulders and I couldn’t bear it.

My three month old refused to sleep.

She refused to be put down.

She refused to drink from a bottle.

She cried if anyone touched her, smiled at her or looked in her direction.

She and I were just two miserable beings who cried all day long.

Except when people came to visit.  Then she was fine, and I was fine, and everything was fine.  At least, that’s what we told them…

But when no one else was around, when it was just her and I, crying together… those were the moments I feared the most.  In my exhausted state, my mind would take over think things like:

I should have gone through with that abortion.

Things would be so much better if she never existed.

Would she stop crying if I just threw her out the window?

Maybe I will run away and never came back!

And then I would punish myself for being such a terrible mother. 

I didn’t know that it was postpartum depression.  I truly believed that I was just a bad person.

My husband, who had been there supporting me through all of it, (and feeling helpless I’m sure) finally told me that something wasn’t right.

I couldn’t have done it alone

I spoke to my doctor.  He agreed that it was postpartum depression and advised me that if I was to start anti-depressants, it meant that I would have to stop breastfeeding. [The fact that he gave me a choice in the matter meant he truly had no idea how bad it really was.  If I had actually told him all the things that were going through my mind, he would have demanded that I start anti-depressants immediately.] 

But I had already convinced myself that I was a terrible mother, and stopping breastfeeding just to take some pills was something a terrible mother would do.  So, in an effort to try to do right by my daughter, I chose to keep breastfeeding instead.

When my daughter was 6 months old, my husband and I decided to move 9 hours away from our hometown.  In my right mind, I would never have agreed to the move because I needed the support of our families more than ever.  But in my postpartum depression mind, I wanted to be far away from anyone and everyone.

That was 5 years ago and my battle with postpartum depression is ongoing.
How to avoid a postpartum depression relapse
Find out more

Over the years it has gone from very, very bad to non-existent and I don’t know if it will ever completely go away.  I try my hardest to maintain a good self-care routine but there are still things that make it better and things that make it worse.

Pain is the biggest trigger for me, so my recent struggle with endometriosis caused one of the largest relapses I’ve experienced in a long time.

I still take anti-depressants daily and while I hope that it won’t be forever, I realize that I will never be the same person I was before postpartum depression.

The End Your Depression Treatment Plan
Find out if this is the right treatment option for you

Believe it or not, I am thankful for the struggle.

I look at my gorgeous, brilliant, 5 year old daughter and I am thankful that a greater power guided me to keep her.

I am thankful that I am not haunted by the dark memories of the worst days.

I am thankful that my husband and I were given “bad times” to get through together.

And mostly, I am thankful that my struggle inspired me to help others.


Thank you for reading my postpartum depression story.

If it inspired you in any way, then I am glad to have written it, as hard as it was to do.   You can read more inspiring stories about postpartum depression and other maternal mental health disorders here

A compilation of posts from bloggers who have bravely told their postpartum depression story
A compilation of postpartum depression posts from other talented bloggers

For more information on how I can help you tell your story, please click here.

The Ultimate Collection of Postpartum Depression Stories

I am a huge believer in speaking out about postpartum depression and other maternal mental health disorders such as perinatal depression, postpartum anxiety, postpartum OCD and postpartum psychosis.

Mothers should not have to suffer alone, yet so many women do because they are ashamed of speaking up due to the stigma that surrounds these disorders. [Related post: 9 Reasons Why Mothers Don’t Speak Up About Having Postpartum Depression]

It’s time to change that…

It has become my mission to collect and share the stories of women who have battled mental health disorders along their journey through motherhood.

Many of those women are talented mom bloggers who know how important it is to speak out, and I’ve shared their stories below as inspiration.

But so many of them are not and have no idea where or how to begin speaking out about their pain.

If you are interested in sharing your story about a postpartum mood disorder, I want to help.  Please click here for more information.


Here you will find a constantly updated list of posts from other brave bloggers who have decided not to keep silent about their battle with postpartum depression and other mood disorders. 

I hope these will inspire you to write your own story and know that you are not alone in this.

A compilation of posts from bloggers who have bravely told their postpartum depression story
* This post contains affiliate links which means that if you click on one of these links and buy a product, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Rest assured that I only recommend products that I love from companies that I trust.

** Furthermore, I am not a medical professional and nothing in this post should be taken as medical advice. I am simply a mother who has been there and lived to tell the tale.

A compilation of posts from bloggers sharing their postpartum depression story.

Sign Up for the Postpartum Depression Survival Guide
join the mailing list!

Sara’s Postpartum Depression Story  *NEW*

[added March 19, 2018]
Sara from Growing as a Mom writes about her struggle with postpartum depression after her baby was born prematurely.  She also includes some actionable tips for battling postpartum depression.

Prenatal Depression: A Tale of an Unhappy Pregnancy 

[added March 12, 2018]
This is a guest post that I wrote for Mummy It’s Ok about my struggle with prenatal depression while pregnant with my second child.  Pregnancy is normally looked upon as a happy time for most women, but unfortunately, not for everyone.

Adrienne’s Postpartum Depression Story 

[added February 13, 2018]
Adrienne from Peace of Mom experienced the loss of a loved one shortly after giving birth.  She talks about what it was like to grieve while caring for a colicky baby and suffering from postpartum depression.

Surviving the Darkness Series from Muddy Boots & Diamonds 

[added January 30, 2018]
Emma from Muddy Boots & Diamonds is running a series on her website called Surviving the Darkness that’s open to survivors of Perinatal (Postpartum) Mood & Anxiety Disorders.  You can read some of the interviews and take part in the series to help spread PMAD awareness.

Read the interview I wrote for this series here – Surviving Prenatal & Postpartum Depression: Vanessa’s Story

Kate’s Postpartum Depression Video

[added January 25, 2018]
This emotional video was submitted to me by Kate, who suffered from postpartum depression after the birth of her second child and came very close to taking her own life.

Kisha’s Postpartum Depression Story 

[added January 22, 2018]
Kisha from The Kisha Project shares her story for the first time in a moving post about how unexpected postpartum depression can be, even if you’ve battled with depression before.

Kara’s Postpartum Depression Story

[added January 03, 2018]
The first postpartum depression guest post submission on Running in Triangles.  Kara from Moms Gone Outdoors tells her emotional tale of battling the pressures of school while trying to raise a baby at a young age.

Vanessa’s Postpartum Depression Story

[added December 14, 2017]
The first in a series of posts offered on Running in Triangles – this is my own personal story.  Even after dealing with prenatal depression while pregnant with my second child, I did not expect actual, full blown postpartum depression.  

Postpartum Depression in India is Real – I have experienced it, have you?

Anjana from Mommy Republic talks about how she suffered from postpartum depression despite having a supporting husband and plenty of help during her first few months postpartum.

How to Overcome Fear & Worry: My Journey Through Post-Partum Depression

Lauren from Lil’ Olive Tree shares a powerful story of how her faith helped her get through a dark time in her life. 

Postpartum Depression – Adventures with Zoloft

Bailey from Simply Mom Bailey expresses a concern many other mothers have during their battle with postpartum depression – whether or not to start taking antidepressants.

When the Baby Blues Don’t Go Away

Shawna from MishMash Mommy can relate to many other mothers out there who put off seeking help because they’re waiting for the baby blues to pass.  

This is My Postpartum Anxiety

Alaina from Mom Eh! shares her story of battling postpartum anxiety, which is different than postpartum depression and gets even less awareness.

Dear Overwhelmed Mom, You Are Not Alone

Jessica from Life of a Cherry Wife was like most women who assume postpartum depression will never happen to them.  In this post, she offers words of support to women who feel completely overwhelmed by motherhood.  

The Truth About Postpartum Depression

Jen from Modest House, Extraordinary Home does a great job of explaining all the different ways postpartum depression affected her.

Postpartum Depression: Signs and Treatment

Aubree from A Mother’s Field Guide wrote this awesome post packed with information about postpartum depression, followed by her own journey.  She, like many women, battled with depression prior to getting pregnant.

My Struggle with Post Natal Anxiety

Taylah from The Tired Mumma Blog did not suffer from postpartum depression at all, but her postnatal (postpartum) anxiety caused an entirely different level of stress in her life.

PPD: Real Stories; Real Sadness; Real Life

Kristin from This Wife and Mommy Life put together this compilation of postpartum depression stories from women of all walks of life. 

The Secret Struggles of Postpartum

Erica Fraser from Mom Break shares her story in a video as well as a post and speaks about the pain that’s often hidden behind closed doors.

This list will be constantly updated, so be sure to check back often for more inspiring stories!


End Your Depression Book


If you are a blogger and would like your existing post to be featured, please e-mail vanessa@runningintriangles.com

To submit a new postpartum depression story, please click here: postpartum depression guest post submission


Ready to tell your own story?  Download this free workbook to get started!
Click to download!