Adele on postnatal depression

(35 Posts)
flamencina Tue 01-Nov-16 14:30:27

http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2016/10/adele-cover-story

I'm not sure how to make it a link but there's an interview in Vanity Fair with Adele and in it she talks about PND. Reading it, I just thought isn't that just what everyone feels like? I don't know if it's because she's not talking about the whole experience or if she actually thinks what she said equates to PND. Surely every parent has moments every day where they wish for their own space to do what they want? I love my daughter so much but still wish every day I had some freedom to do something totally different. Taking one afternoon a week or herself, that's hardly unusual. I don't get that myself, hardly get any time away from my child, but the way she's said it is like it is something exceptional that needed to be done.

I just feel like instead of normalising that experience as a mother, it labels it as abnormal and something that needs to be treated.

I'm not saying she didn't have it before anyone jumps on that, obviously Adele and her doctors know better than me but I feel the portrayal in the article might make mums who are struggling with the usual things feel like there's something wrong with them.

MidsummersNight Tue 01-Nov-16 14:35:54

I'm not sure.

On one hand I'm sure there are varying degrees of PND, but the way Adele describes it in that article seems very much like a normal experience of being a mother.

I had severe PND that was treated with medication and every single day was like living the worst day of my life. I was a truly terrible mother and wanted to either hurt myself or my baby every day. I did the necessary and no more, it was a really horrible time in my life and if it weren't for the medication I dread to think what I'd have done.

She's maybe just not going into too much detail but from the way it's described in that article it doesn't seem to me like PND, but who are we to decide what is and isn't etc!

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Tue 01-Nov-16 14:51:16

I think some degree of PND is not unusual though, and recognising it is helpful in dealing with it -it doesn't need to involve medication, just some understanding can be helpful. I didn't realise until I started feeling better that quite possibly mild PND was the cause, after DS2 was born, of a couple of years of a combination of anxiety, panic, feeling like I couldn't cope at home and work, especially with taking the children out or going anywhere with them on my own, mild paranoia and very low mood. I just felt so alone. There is a massive difference between mild and more severe PND though and I guess the danger is that people read that sort of article and assume it's the same thing.

flamencina Tue 01-Nov-16 15:50:17

Yes, I think it's the combination of her saying she had it really bad, but just describes it like that and says she managed without anti depressants.

TheWrathFromHighAtopTheThing Tue 01-Nov-16 15:54:40

I don't know; I instinctively think we shouldn't judge anyone who says they had PND because it doesn't sound as bad as someone else's experience of it.

MrsJayy Tue 01-Nov-16 15:59:48

I dont think we should be dismissing Adeles feelings PND comes in many forms we dont all cry or want to hurt our babies. I managed PND with councilling self medication with alcohol not the best move and pretending everything was fine. Inside i felt like i wanted to get as far away from my baby as possible. Remember this is Vanity fair a lifestyle magazine where things will be diluted so it is palatable (sp) to its readers

Oblomov16 Tue 01-Nov-16 16:06:58

I'm not so sure. I disagree. If we give total respect to PND and the severity of PND then we also recognise that some mild baby blues or general tiredness are NOT the same as genuine PND.

PND is serious and deserves respect.

Gwenci Tue 01-Nov-16 16:08:50

I think it's valuable to talk about PND in all its forms and to highlight that it has 'milder' variations.

I was never diagnosed with PND after my first DC was born and it never occurred to me that I might have it as I didn't have the awful symptoms as described by MidSummersNight (I can't imagine how hard that was, flowers for everyone who has been/is going through that). But in hindsight looking back I'm certain I had mild PND.

I cried a lot, everything was a struggle, I HATED being alone with the baby. But I thought everyone felt the same. And anyone saying they were loving 'squishy baby cuddles' was lying to save face.

It was only 18 months or so after DC was born that I realised they weren't lying. Some people actually do enjoy being with a small baby, and don't see it as something terrifying.

I coped much better with DC2. Though my first experience has clearly left its mark as my first reaction when someone tells me they're pregnant is to feel genuinely sorry for them at the fear and loneliness that's in store for them. I have to remind myself it's not like that for everyone. (I say congratulations to their face, obviously!)

OracleofDelphi Tue 01-Nov-16 16:09:19

slightly totally agree with you. I think I had mild PND with DS as I felt awful - overwhelmed, scared, couldnt bond, couldnt sleep, didnt want to pick him up or be left alone with him..... which is kind of what shes describing. But that is a world away from people who have severe PND. So I think youre right - saying it as really really bad, but that it just lifted and she didnt take antidepressants is a bit misleading.

It might have been really bad for her, and frightening, (which is sad an upsetting)but thats not the same thing as severe clinical depression. I think many women dont feel how the think they aught to feel. And many women feel that celebrities seem to cope / get thin etc easily - so saying she felt bad is a good thing on one hand.

However we are in danger of the word depression massively being over used and loosing the impact that it rightly deserves. Saying you were seriously depressed when you have not been diagnosed as such, is misleading.

Gwenci Tue 01-Nov-16 16:12:34

I think if I'd known PND could present like that, I'd have spoken to my GP. I'm still sad at how much of DD's first year I spent feeling like I was very slowly drowning.

RoganJosh Tue 01-Nov-16 16:14:53

Just about to read it, here's a clicky link. Maybe.

www.vanityfair.com/culture/2016/10/adele-cover-story

MrsJayy Tue 01-Nov-16 16:16:58

I wasn't diagnosed untill dd was 13ish months old I thought what i was feeling was normal it wasn't normal i had obsessions about getting "me time" looking forward to dh taking the baby away to his mothers obsessed with resting just anything to get away from the baby and i was also drinking alcohol on Dh backshifts and the weekends while dh was there to look after her i was drinking because I told myself i deserved it Pnd isn't black and white

butterfliesandzebras Tue 01-Nov-16 16:28:31

I read this differently to you. I read her comments about wanting time to herself and making sure she has an afternoon off (despite feeling 'mom guilt') are about how she feels 'now', not that that was her pnd.

All she really says about directly about pnd is that it was terrible, she didn't take medication, she struggled talk about it, but felt better when she and a mum friend could admit they hated it, and that she's too scared to have another kid because of it. It read to me like she was skimming over the details (which is fair enough).

MrsJayy Tue 01-Nov-16 16:31:29

Exactly what Butterflies said she skimmed over details which she is entitled to do and she also didn't say severe

HarleyQuinzel Tue 01-Nov-16 16:35:49

She could well just not be telling the details of her PND. She says she was obsessed with him, constantly worrying she wasn't getting it right etc. I don't think that's normal?

I had very bad depression and felt suicidal for about a year of my life. I never took medication or had counselling and it did just go away eventually after about a year. As silly as it sounds I had no idea I was depressed until afterwards. I finally had counselling years later.

JinkxMonsoon Tue 01-Nov-16 16:36:34

Perhaps she was unwilling to go into much detail about her experience, so gave a glossed over, santitised version of what happened. She likes to keep her private life private, and no doubt is media savvy enough to realise that a brutally honest account of PND might get misquoted and sensationalised for months after.

HarleyQuinzel Tue 01-Nov-16 16:37:20

I also think an afternoon a week to yourself is a pretty normal thing to want! Can't believe how judgemental some other mothers can be.

MaddyHatter Tue 01-Nov-16 16:39:31

i dont think she is belittling it

I was never diagnosed, but i had it, i know i did.. i just thought i was overwhelmed.. it was my anxiety disorder.. i hid it VERY well, i didn't speak to anyone about it.

I had a complete meltdown when my daughter was about 9mo.. i recall sitting in my living room, curled in a ball with the kids screaming around me and i was just rocking and breathing because at that moment, i felt like i was going to fly apart.

I came out of it a year later when i walked out on my marriage, and the 9 months we were seperated i finally admitted something wasn't right, and everyone told me they knew.. but they were waiting for me to say something.

I know now, looking back, it wasn't just my anxiety.. i had PND... and it was a horrible, dark place in my life i don't like to remember.. but the fact i didn't talk to anyone, meant i never took anti-depressants, but that doesn't mean i never had it, it just means no-one ever took me in hand.. they just tried to keep me afloat until i reached out for help.

RiverTam Tue 01-Nov-16 16:40:10

I'm another one who probably had mild PND, DH and DSis are convinced I did too. And because it wasn't full blown PND it didn't get picked up on. I had an 'easy' baby but I just found everything So Bloody Hard, I was so anxious about everything to do with DD, I wouldn't leave her with anyone for any length of time but I didn't really enjoy being with her either. I wasn't exhausted as she was a good sleeper from a young age, didn't have that excuse, so I knew I was just a crap mother. Not awful, not neglectful, I bonded with her and loved her, just crap. And I didn't know that there was any other name for being Just Crap other than that.

Two years I feel I wasted, that I'll never get back.

Thisjustinno Tue 01-Nov-16 16:51:27

Someone who is scared to have another baby because of how awful they felt with their first obviously felt really unwell.

AliceScarlett Tue 01-Nov-16 17:42:06

At the end of the day no one can say this persons experience was within the normal range but this person's tipped over into the realms of disordered illness. Where is the line? Nowhere. I worry we medicalise human experiences, but at the same time awareness of MH problems ante/post natal is a good thing. Ah dialectics.

Poshsausage Tue 01-Nov-16 18:11:08

Am in the middle of it like the poster upthreas said every day is like the worst of my life and all I think about is trying not to hurt myself
Am on high does meds for it but still feel the same only with more tiredness and an extra two stone
It's not nice for anyone suffering x or their families

FayKorgasm Tue 01-Nov-16 18:28:50

My PND came in the form of obsession about everything to do with my baby. From the right nappy to baby grows to bleaching the kitchen at 1am.I was deliriously happy (read manic) during her first six months. That's not normal behaviour.
I used own brand nappies but had a packet f pampers for HV visits so she didn't judge me. DDs outfits had to perfectly match. I once threw away a soother because it was orange and orange d not look good on my baby.

MrsJayy Tue 01-Nov-16 18:38:50

I work with parents mothers mostly and 1 of the signs of high anxiety is an overdressed mum and baby I know that might not make sense but we have had a few mums with Mh problems and pnd and some weeks they are very done up and baby is too.

DeleteOrDecay Tue 01-Nov-16 18:43:36

I don't think it's right to minimise or question someone else's experience of PND.

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