How to Start Blogging about Postpartum Depression

Writing about scary thoughts and feelings has several great benefits for a mother struggling from a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder.

And what better outlet than to start blogging about postpartum depression?  Thanks to modern technology it is easier to start a blog now, than ever before.  And with all the choices available, you can choose whether you’d like to remain private or whether you’d like your voice to be heard around the world.

Blogging about postpartum depression not only has benefits for a suffering mother.  It’s also an excellent way to help raise awareness about maternal mental health and break down the stigma that exists around it.  The more women who are speaking up about postpartum depression and other mood disorders following childbirth, the better.

If you’re interested in learning how to start your own mental health blog and speak your truth, here is a quick tutorial on how to start blogging about postpartum depression. 

How to Start Blogging about Postpartum Depression *This post contains affiliate and/or paid 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.


Shortly after I was officially diagnosed with postpartum depression, my husband, toddler, infant and I packed up all our belongings and moved 900 kms away from our hometown.  We left behind all our friends and family and had no idea how difficult our lives would be over the next few years.

If there is one thing that a woman with postpartum depression desperately needs, it’s a good support system… and I just didn’t have one. 

I moved to a small town where I knew no one, had no job or prospect of one, had no babysitters or daycare arrangements and was a good three hour drive from a major city.  Isolated and alone, my postpartum depression grew worse with each passing day.

Prenatal & Postpartum Depression - Vanessa's Story
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But there was one thing I knew that I could do, even if I had no one to talk to.  I could write about it. 

That’s how I started blogging about postpartum depression.

I started my first blog using a free Blogger account because I had no idea what I was doing.  I wasn’t thinking about making money or getting followers – I just wanted to write about what I was feeling and share my story.

At first, I didn’t write about postpartum depression.  I needed a way to work up to that.  I wrote about other random things that my kids did or things I learned along my parenting journey.  Eventually, I got a new job and made some new friends and I started to feel more confident.

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So one day, I sat down at my computer and I poured out my story.  100 edits later, I published it to my blogger account and shared it on Facebook for all to see.

I was overwhelmed by the response.  I started to get messages, both from close friends offering words of encouragement and support, and from contacts whom I barely knew, confiding in me about their own struggle with postpartum depression.  One of my new friends in my new town saw me the next day and told me that she cried reading my story and felt so much closer to me, knowing that we shared a similar experience.

That feeling of empowerment has stuck with me for years.

After that blog post, I didn’t feel the need to write anymore.  Once I said my piece and shared what was bottled up inside of me, I felt better.  Over the next few years, I focused on my new career, moved a couple more times, and had another baby.  I remembered to take care of myself and kept busy and distracted.  All the while, the postpartum depression started to become a bad memory.

A couple years ago, I began to suffer badly from a condition called endometriosis.  I wrote more about my battle with it here.  The chronic pain caused a major relapse of my postpartum depression symptoms and I needed anti-depressants just to function.  It was at this point that I realized – postpartum depression never really goes away.

Battling Endometriosis While Suffering from Postpartum Depression
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While researching information about endometriosis, I came across a lot of information about maternal mental health.  In all the years since I first suffered from postpartum depression, there didn’t seem to be any forward progress on the way women were treated or how it was talked about.  There was still so much stigma and too many women dying or hiding their feelings.  I just knew that I had to do something about that.

And so I began Running in Triangles.  I knew that I wanted to start blogging about postpartum depression again but I put some more effort and forethought into what kind of site I wanted.  This time, it wasn’t just about needing an outlet for my own feelings – it was about getting information and resources to the women who needed it the most.

If you would like to start blogging about postpartum depression, here’s what I recommend you do:

Step 1: Write Your Blog Posts

Yes, that’s right, start writing your blog posts before you even purchase your domain name.  Having a few blog posts ready to publish as soon as your blog is active means a little less pressure on yourself to come up with new content regularly.  It will also give your readers a few posts to read right away.  Write them out using Microsoft Word or Google Docs so that you can easily cut and paste them once you’ve launched your blog.

Start by writing some sort of introduction about yourself.  Tell your story – whether in depth or just a brief summary for now.  But don’t be afraid to make it known that you are writing about your experience with postpartum depression, anxiety, OCD, psychosis and/or whatever else ails you.

Think of your blog as a safe space.  Share as many or as few details about yourself as you like.  You can write under a “pen name” instead of using your own, or simply use your first name only.  Blogging about postpartum depression can make a person feel vulnerable and requires a certain level of openness.  Writing out what you want to say BEFORE launching a blog can help you to get comfortable with that.

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Step 2: Purchase Web Hosting

A web hosting service is like your blog’s engine and it keeps everything running smoothly.  Running in Triangles is hosted by Siteground, and I would definitely recommend it!  The odd time I needed technical support, they were so helpful and quick to respond.

Through your web host, you will also be able to choose your own domain (your website’s name), get your own e-mail address (such as yourname@yourblog.com) and install WordPress (Siteground now makes it easier than ever to install WordPress).

Step 3: Set up WordPress

WordPress.org is a self-hosted blogging platform.  It’s the exterior of your blog and the place where you publish content and make it look pretty.

If you’re computer illiterate and would prefer something all-in-one that’s already set up for you, and requires very little maintenance, then a basic platform like WordPress.com* or Blogger will work.  You don’t need to purchase additional web hosting, but you will also be very limited in what you can do with it.  Unless you go self-hosted, you won’t be able to monetize your site or add extra plug-ins to make it unique.

*Wordpress.com is different from WordPress.org, so don’t get the two confused. Check out this info-graphic that explains some of the major differences.

For more detailed step by step instructions on how to start your new blog using Siteground and WordPress.org, I recommend following this tutorial from Elna at TwinsMommy.com

Step 4: Design your Site

WordPress.org is actually very user friendly but it can feel intimidating at first.  The first thing you will want to do is choose your theme.  Your theme sets the tone for the way your site looks.  WordPress.org offers a variety of free themes, but you can also purchase a custom made one on Etsy.

Thankfully, WordPress.org offers a lot of support for beginners.  If you’re ever unsure of how to do something, check out their Getting Started Menu to find tutorials and answers to frequently asked questions.

Another design element that you will need for your blog is photos.  Photos are a great way to get your message across and help break up long paragraphs of words.  If you’re not much of a photographer, or would prefer to keep personal photos off the internet, then consider using free stock photo sites such as Unsplash, Splitshire, Pixabay or KaboomPics.

To edit your photos and create graphics for use on your website, use free image editing sites such as Canva or PicMonkey.

Postpartum Depression Blog Posts
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Step 5: Network

The community of mental health bloggers is one of the most supportive ones you can find.  You can expect to connect with others who have been through similar experiences, and they are generally pretty supportive no matter what your story is.  Mental health bloggers don’t look at each other as competition and are always looking to share posts that speak the truth about mental health disorders.  Whether you are blogging about postpartum depression, anxiety or another mood disorder – connect with the mental health community to help your voice be heard!

Make yourself known on social media by using hashtags so that other mental health bloggers can find you.  If you plan to use social media for your blog, make sure to start new “business” accounts and use your blog name (or a shortened version of it) as your username whenever possible.

If you plan to recommend products and services that have helped you along your journey, then consider joining some affiliate programs.  Check out Shareasale, CJ affiliates or AwinIf you’re serious about affiliate marketing and want to use it to monetize your blog, then I recommend taking the Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing course.  It contains everything you could possibly want to know about how to make affiliate marketing work for you.

Join the mental health blogging community!  There are Facebook groups,  group boards on Pinterest and Tailwind Tribes you can join.  Twitter and Instagram are also great places to connect with other mental health bloggers, simply by searching for them or clicking on #mentalhealthbloggers.

Step 6: Find me!

Once you’ve started blogging about postpartum depression – come find me!  I would be more than happy to share some of your links, add you to groups, and help you get in contact with mental health bloggers and networks.  You don’t need to be alone in this and if you truly feel a desire to start speaking up about postpartum depression, I am here to help!

Leave a comment below with your blog URL and I’ll make sure to check it out!

 

How to Start Blogging about Postpartum Depression

How to Start Blogging about Postpartum Depression

How To Find the Courage to Talk About Postpartum Depression

Most women with postpartum depression know two things – that they should talk about it, and that they don’t want to.

New mothers are bombarded with information telling them that they need to speak up if they just aren’t feeling right.  But they don’t – and for several good reasons.  So how do we bridge the gap between the terrified mothers living silently in darkness and the concerned support system who can only help if they know what’s wrong?

Ending the stigma surrounding mental illness would break down so many barriers.  And more women talking about postpartum depression would help to do that.

The women who DO speak up, are courageous for doing so.  They have decided to ask for help and tell their stories, despite the barriers presented by the medical system and society in general.

Here are some tips for women who want to know how to talk about postpartum depression.


*This post contains affiliate and/or paid 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.


Read About It

Reading the stories of other mothers can help you figure out how to talk about postpartum depression.  Try to read as many stories as you can, because each mother’s experience is different.  You never know which ones will relate to you specifically.  And if you find a story that feels like the author took the words right out of your mouth – then save it and read it over and over again.  Share it on social media or with someone you love.  Let the courage of other woman inspire you to want to share your own story.

Find some stories to read in The Ultimate Collection of Postpartum Depression Stories

Postpartum Depression Blog Posts
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More of a visual person?  You can find hundreds of videos of women telling their postpartum depression stories on YouTube

Write About It

If you want to know how to talk about postpartum depression, then you need to practice what you’re going to say.  Writing it out is a great first step.  You don’t need to be a professional writer nor feel any obligation to share your story with anyone.  Write it just for you.

Write it out on paper, in pen, so that you can’t erase or delete anything.  You can scribble words out but they will still be there like an everlasting reminder that running away from your thoughts doesn’t help.

Write about the bad stuff that you’re too afraid to say out loud.  Write about the sad stuff and keep writing even when your tears soak through the paper.  Write about all the hopes and dreams that haven’t come true for you yet.

When you’re done writing it out – you will want to burn it or tear it up into a million pieces and flush it.  But instead of doing that, find the courage to keep it.  It will help you greatly when you are ready to talk about postpartum depression.

Bonus:  Download and print this free PDF workbook to write about your thoughts in.

How to Start Blogging about Postpartum Depression
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Help Someone Else

Helping someone else who is in the same situation as you are is a great way to learn how to talk about postpartum depression.  One way to do this by joining a private online support group where you can talk more freely with strangers.  Mothers are usually quite honest and open in these groups and ask questions about everything from medications to marriage problems.  If you don’t feel quite ready to ask your own questions, then start by answering one for another mother.

Supporting someone else is incredibly empowering and can give you the courage to talk about your own struggle with postpartum depression.

Here are some online support groups you can join: (I am a member of all these groups as well)

Momma’s Postpartum Depression Support

Postpartum Support International

Postpartum Anxiety Support Group

Postpartum Depression & Anxiety Support Group 

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Talk to a Survivor

No one knows how to talk about postpartum depression better than a survivor.  I should mention that, when it comes to maternal mental illness, there are no REAL survivors because there is no REAL cure.

What I mean by a survivor is:
  • A woman who has lived through the worst of it in the first year postpartum.
  • A woman who decided she needed help and asked for it.
  • A woman who spoke up about what she was going through.
  • A woman who made changes in her life to avoid the chances of a relapse.
  • A woman who has established a treatment plan.
  • A woman who’s mind told her to end it all but she didn’t.

Survivors are still battling the pain of postpartum depression and/or are at risk for a relapse.  But survivors have one thing that you don’t… they have spoken up about postpartum depression and lived to tell the tale.  So find a survivor and ask them how to talk about postpartum depression.

I am a postpartum depression survivor, and I am always available to talk!  You can also join the Postpartum Depression Survival Guide E-Newsletter and get e-mails from me about things that are important to woman fighting the battle.  Plus – you can reply to any one of them to chat with me directly!

Running in Triangles Postpartum Depression Survival Guide
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Don’t Do It Alone

Fighting a battle alone is never a good plan, no matter how much courage you have.  It is much easier to talk about postpartum depression when you have someone holding your hand.  Asking for help with postpartum depression doesn’t always mean asking for medication or therapy.  Asking for help can mean something as simple as helping you talk to someone about what you’re going through.

Who do you want to talk to about postpartum depression?  Your spouse?  Your doctor? Your family or friends?  Find a person or group to stand with you as you do it (physically or virtually).  Having someone else there for “emotional support” can give you the courage you need to speak up, and also hold you accountable so you can’t back out at the last minute.

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One option to consider if you’d like help to speak openly about your postpartum depression to your family and friends is to access an online psychiatrist.  Thanks to the privacy and anonymity that it offers, you can speak to a licensed professional, on your own time, without anyone needing to know until you are ready.  To find out if this is the right option for you, read up on some more Reasons To Choose An Online Psychiatrist from Betterhelp.com. 

Consider the Worst Case Scenario

Make a list of all the things keeping you silent.  Which one do you fear the most?  Are you afraid you will be treated like a criminal or child abuser?  That your children will be taken away from you, or that your spouse will leave you?  Maybe you’re worried that someone will judge you, say insensitive things to you or avoid you altogether?

Now make a list of all the reasons why you want to speak up.  Are you struggling and don’t know how to cope?  Do you want to be a better mother and wife?  Do you want others to know why you’ve been acting strange?  Do you feel alone?  Are you scared of what you might do?  Contemplating suicide?

9 Reasons Why Moms Don't Talk About Postpartum Depression
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Which list is your worst case scenario?

Don’t wait for something bad to happen before you decide to talk about postpartum depression.  Think carefully about the consequences of staying silent when you should be speaking up.  Talking about it won’t be easy, and neither is battling in silence – but wouldn’t you rather have an army by your side to fight the war raging inside of you?

Make Plans For the Future

Thinking about the future can help you decide how to talk about postpartum depression.  It’s easy to get wrapped up in all the darkness happening right now, but the future is that light at the end of the tunnel.  Without help or a plan to get better, the future seems bleak.  It seems like a never-ending life of sadness and despair.

Imagine what you want your future to look like.  Do you want to have more children?  Think about watching your children grow up, helping them with homework and taking family vacations.  Aim to achieve it instead of mourn what would be.  So make a 1, 5, and 10 year plan for your life.  Having a future will give you something to fight for.

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The simple act of talking about postpartum depression can feel like an insurmountable task for many mothers. 

The hundreds of reasons for staying silent are completely valid and understandable.  Postpartum depression is a private matter and there is no need for the entire world to know about a mother’s inner most thoughts and feelings.

But the hundreds of reasons for speaking up are also valid.  It will take a lot of courage, and make a person feel exposed and vulnerable.  But it means that you won’t have to fight this battle alone.  And if you don’t have to fight it alone, you have a much better chance of winning.

Don’t wait for someone to ask you how you’re feeling, take matters into your own hands and find the courage to speak up.


Ready to talk about postpartum depression?  I can help you share your story!

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