Expert Blog Compelling advice, stories, and thought-provoking perspectives straight from YourTango's lineup of Experts to you

Parenting With Depression Can Be Severely Difficult At Times

Family

Ever year in the United States, approximately four million new babies are born.

Ever year in the United States, approximately four million new babies are born. While delivering a newborn to the world and becoming the mother of the baby she carried inside of her for nine months seems like an exciting and joyful part of a woman's life, some women experience adverse effects and do not consider this as exciting is it could've been. As much as 20% of women who give birth experience a condition known as postpartum depression. This condition causes the women to experience depression, stress and anxiety, which could cause problems with the way they bond with their newborn and may even lead to other issues related to their own health, as well as the health of their new child. Depression isn't only an issue for new mothers, but can also be a problem with parents even if their children are at an older age. This can often lead to feelings of guilt - the mother feels that she is unable to properly care for her child. Some mothers also experience sessions where their symptoms flare out, which may cause them to say things or do things to their child that they would later then regret.

The Most Common Causes Of Depression In Parents
There are many causes of depression and what causes one person to become depressed would not necessarily cause another person to become depressed. While depression is medically classified as an imbalance of certain chemicals in the brain, the source of the development of the illness needs to be taken into consideration. Generally, the following are considered to be the most common elements that may lead to the development of depression in a person:

  • In some cases, a biological factor may contribute to depression. When norepinephrine and serotonin levels are not at normal levels, they can cause a person to experience symptoms that are associated with depression.
  • Psychological factors can also have a major impact on a person's risk of developing depression. Since every person is affected by events in their lives in a different way, some people may be more prone to develop depression when certain psychological factors are causing them stress and anxiety.
  • Certain environmental factors have also been linked to depression. These factors include events that the specific person is not in control of - such as a loved one passing away, a stressful workplace or issues with the person's health.

In parents, there are many additional environmental and psychological factors that should be taken into consideration when you look at some of the most common causes of depression. For example, a divorce or conflict in a relationship may affect the mother more when they have a child than it would when they do not have a child - since there is a child involved, the mother does not only need to focus on what becomes of her, but also has to take the child into consideration.

Depression's Effect On The Mother
Women who have children and depressed often find that depression puts a lot of strain on their ability to be an effective parent. They often find that the symptoms they experience makes them feel like less worthy of a parent and that they often act irresponsibly. Even though a woman may experience a lot of symptoms related to depression and act recklessly as a parent at times, it does not necessarily mean that they are bad parents. In fact, many mothers tend to put too much pressure upon themselves as a parent with depression that they often forget to see the smaller things in life that make them a good parent.

Cierra Lyn Fortner And Her One Facebook Post
On 20 January 2017, Cierra Lyn Fortner, a mother of two children, shared a post on Facebook. In the post, she opened up by explaining how depression really affects her as a mother and how it is not always fair for mothers to judge themselves too much. The post quickly became popular and many people showed their support by liking the post, commenting and sharing. In fact, on 2 February 2017, the post has receive 164,000 likes and 93,655 shares.

Cierra made this post after she was stopped by a consultant in her local Wallmart. The consultant told her that she was very impressed with the fact that her children were always well-behaved and she always seems like she has every together. Cierra explains in her Facebook post that, even though it may seem like it, she does not always have everything in order. In fact, she often locks herself in the bathroom to cry as depression sometimes gets the best of her. She continues to explain how depression really affects her and mentions that parents should stop putting too much pressure on themselves and rather focus on giving their children love, rather than judging them for the materialistic objects they are unable to always give to their children.

Conclusion
Depression can sometimes get the best of us, but we should not let it. As a parent, you should not focus on how bad of a parent depression makes you, but rather try to focus on not feeling helpless and trying to care for ourselves too. While the child is important, the mother also needs to be cared for in order to care for the child in return.

Author
Expert

Expert advice

If you keep finding yourself in heartbreaking, dead end relationships, listen up.
Several key behaviors stand out in order to help couples create a healthy relationship.
It seems like you can't do anything right.

Explore YourTango