I’m almost 20 weeks pregnant and I’d love to tell you – like so many people do that being pregnant is ‘just wonderful.’ I want nothing more than to write a post about how I got through the first trimester – but writing about it would be like re-living it and I’m good for torturing myself today. I see many pregnant women and pregnancy just seems to become them. They suit it almost, like they are glowing from the inside out. That’s not me. I’m not enjoying pregnancy. I know that in a way I sound ungrateful but it’s wholeheartedly true. Could this be prenatal depression?
I won’t lie, I’ve had moments where I wish I hadn’t pursued getting pregnant. It’s just a fleeting thought. It flutters in and out again quickly – but I have thought it. How awful is that? I have friends with fertility issues who I know would make the most wonderful parents. Friends that would give anything to naturally conceive and carry their own child. Then there is me, blessed with this chance that isn’t available to everyone and I’m almost ungrateful for it. Even if it’s just for a moment. I know that carrying a child is a privilege and I honestly don’t take it for granted. This child is truly wanted, already loved but I can’t say that my pregnancy has been easy.
I’m not one for needing ‘labels’ but I’m pretty sure I’m suffering with prenatal depression. It’s not a depression you hear too much about. I guess there is a stigma attached to it. I like to call a spade a spade and I’m not afraid to admit I’m struggling. I’ve spoken to my GP and my midwife has been just wonderful. I am getting all the support I could ask for but I just want to feel better. I don’t want to feel overwhelmed or anxious. Honestly I just don’t want to feel these feelings I do toward myself.
Originally, I wrote about prenatal depression on my Instagram page. The support I received was overwhelming. I also had women privately message me to say that they felt exactly the same. Women that were too afraid to say it out loud because they didn’t want to be judged. Judged for their feelings, labelled as bad mother or the risk of having their children taken from them. It feels wrong to be growing a life and feel so miserable about it why would you want to share that.
It’s Ok to Speak Out
Without speaking out these women didn’t have to face judgement but they also couldn’t get help. I still don’t feel the best I know I could but I know I could feel a lot worse. Prenatal depression is perfectly ‘normal’ it’s ok to not feel 100% happy all the time. Just because your pregnancy doesn’t match up to someone else’s doesn’t mean they are any better a person than you are. Most importantly prenatal depression doesn’t define whether I’m a good mother or not. I might not feel the blooming joys of pregnancy like many other women do but I know I’m a good mum.
I have been honest about my feelings from day one with my partner, my doctor and midwife. Being honest and open means that they can help me. It’s reassuring to hear my midwife tell me that she’s heard many women say the exact things I’m saying. My children aren’t at risk of being taken away because I am a good mother. I’m just a woman growing a human and not entirely enjoying the process.
If you are suffering prenatal depression don’t be afraid to speak out because once you stop bottling it up you will feel a world better.
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Love as always!
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