Postpartum Depression And Divorce
Expecting a baby can be an exciting time, especially for first-time parents. A newborn can bring a lot of joy into a married couple’s life. However, a baby can also bring a lot of stress and frustration, especially if the mother develops postpartum depression after giving birth.
Postpartum depression is similar to other types of depression, but the main difference is that it occurs after a woman has given birth. She may be irritable and extremely sad. The women may experience mood swings, anger, anxiety and a loss of interest in hobbies. She may have trouble eating or sleeping. The new mother may also have difficulty bonding with the baby.
Postpartum depression takes a toll on parenthood as well as the marriage. Studies show that women who have postpartum depression are more likely to divorce or separate. That’s because the couple often struggles to communicate. Women with postpartum depression may lash out at their husbands, causing them to feel defensive.
Communication is a huge issue. The woman has anxiety or depression and the man may feel helpless or frustrated. In fact, communication struggles often lead to divorce, and this is especially true right after giving birth. Statistics show that the first year after becoming parents is the most challenging for married couples. Postpartum depression contributes to this.
Relationship conflict is common when the mother suffers from postpartum depression. The couple may stop talking to each other. If they do communicate, it may mostly be through yelling, which causes communication to break down and makes matters worse. Sometimes the marriage can recover, but in many cases, it cannot and the couple decides to divorce.
Treatment for Postpartum Depression
It’s important to recognize the signs of postpartum depression because the earlier it is detected, the better the outcome. It is possible for a woman to go undiagnosed for months. She may think that her feelings are normal, so she ignores them.
Treatment may include a combination of therapy, medications and counseling. Medications may include antidepressants. Therapies may include cognitive behavioral therapy, psychotherapy and support groups. Ideally, therapy should include the spouse as well so he can understand the role he plays in his wife’s illness and what he can do to help.
Self-care is also important. Relaxation techniques such as yoga can help the new mother. Also, the husband should try to help out with the baby as much as possible so the mother doesn’t feel overwhelmed.
Contact a Maryland Family Law Attorney Today
While the birth of a baby should be an exciting time, not all new mothers feel that way. Some develop postpartum depression, which can impact their life in many ways.
This health issue can cause relationship problems, leading to divorce. If you are considering ending your marriage, the Columbia divorce lawyers at The Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. can help you through the process and make sure you are making the right choices. Schedule a consultation today by filling out the online form or calling (410) 774-5987. We have two offices to serve you.