Please Read Me!

7 Apr

My stats are down.  Way down.

When I wrote earlier in the week that I’m writing for me, I meant it.  This is my place to think and process what’s going on in my life – mostly in my head.  So though I *will* admit that it’s awesome to check in and find I’ve gotten over a hundred hits in a day, I don’t need stats to make this worth it for me.

Usually I can count on at least 50-60 hits on a day when I post something new.  Most of those link from Facebook, where my friends and family keep tabs on me.  My biggest days?  The post after No2 was born, and my post entitled “Breast is Best“.  I figure people wanted to see the new baby…and then couldn’t wait to get all riled up and argue about breastfeeding.  (Nobody argued with me, by the way.  It wasn’t that kind of post.)

So why aren’t they reading now that I’m exclusively writing about mental health for a month?  My ego truly isn’t bruised.  I am simply worried about what this tells me about my topic.  Could it be that mental health is still so taboo that no one wants to read about it?  Or are these posts boring people?  Is the ppd blogging community deluding ourselves when we think we’re creating awareness?  Perhaps we’re really only writing for one another.  Or maybe it’s just a bit overwhelming.  It’s a tough topic.  Hard to think about.  I get that – really.  It’s a month of heavy writing, of me up on my soapbox.  So I understand if some of my readers are taking a break.

But.

I will keep writing.  1 in 5 mothers suffers from a postpartum mood or anxiety disorder.  This statistic from Postpartum Progress is shocking and frightening:

In fact, more mothers will suffer from postpartum depression and related illnesses this year than the combined number of new cases for both sexes of tuberculosis, leukemia, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and epilepsy. This is not to minimize these other terrible diseases, of course. I simply want to illustrate just how prevalent postpartum mood & anxiety disorders are.

These women cannot be left to believe they are alone.  I will continue to stand up and proudly claim my status as a ppd survivor and anxiety sufferer.  I am proof that mental illness can strike anyone, and that you can come out the other side stronger and more resilient than ever.

I hope you will support my fight against stigma.  I hope you will keep reading.

11 Responses to “Please Read Me!”

  1. postpartumandpigtails April 7, 2012 at 12:08 pm #

    I try to read as much as I can and know that if you have reached even one person and they don’t feel so alone or they even reach out to get help because of something you wrote then that is awesome! I know for me, when I found all of these blogs about ppmd it changed everything for me and it was the reason I opened up and finally told people what was going on and got the help I needed! You all made me feel like you understood and I didn’t feel alone anymore. That is an amazing gift to give someone who is struggling 🙂

    • learnedhappiness April 7, 2012 at 2:25 pm #

      I’m so glad I could help, Andrea. Like we said at Isis – it can be so isolating and helps to talk to people who “get it”.

  2. Charity C (@signingcharity) April 7, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    Maybe they assume the topic isn’t for them. Have you ever thought of how normal you can look and be falling apart. I was really struggling yesterday, but when you saw me in public, I looked fine. Is the person with the next grocery cart falling apart? Can they be browsing the internet and find our post? If yes, then we should keep writing!

    • learnedhappiness April 7, 2012 at 2:22 pm #

      That’s a really good point, Charity. Until my friend Melissa at Sweetly Voiced started writing about diabetes, I had never read a blog about it. It didn’t apply to me or my life. I definitely fit into that category of looking like I’m fine. These days I *am* okay, but especially with my first, I looked all put together but at home was a sobbing, screaming mess.

      And I will keep writing. Thanks for helping me see it a different way.

  3. elise April 7, 2012 at 1:05 pm #

    well, i just think you’re fascinating to read, so there ;). my husband is a psychologist, so i’m becoming more aware of all kinds of mental and mood disorders, and how real and prevalent they are (not that i doubted their reality, but i think you know what i mean?). i’ve showed him a number of your posts, and he’s been impressed too with your thoughtful insights and expression. and yes, i definately think it’s important to get your message out!

    • learnedhappiness April 7, 2012 at 2:22 pm #

      Awww…thanks. =) And I do know what you mean. Until I suffered from PPD, mental health was just another story – something that happened to other people.

  4. Sarah (Smldada) April 7, 2012 at 1:23 pm #

    I am reading. If I don’t click through the email to the actual site, I wonder if it doesn’t count?

    • learnedhappiness April 7, 2012 at 2:24 pm #

      I know you are, Sarah. =) My #ppdchat mamas click over and I love the community we’ve built and how war continue to support one another. I was mostly struck by how my non ppd peeps weren’t reading. We (the ppd crowd) know how ppd affects families and new moms. I hope that my Facebook friends and family will read, too. That’s how we start good conversations and can eliminate stigma.

  5. Jessica April 7, 2012 at 8:28 pm #

    This is my first time to your blog, but I’ve enjoyed all I’ve read. Like the other commentators, I think you should keep talking about PPD as it’s women like you who have enabled women like me to have a voice. As a new mom, I had heard about PPD but because everyone around me told me I was just naturally a dramatic person, I didn’t associate my violent thoughts and behaviors after the birth of my first daughter with that disorder, or PPD. It was only through blogging, through reading the words of PPD survivors that I saw myself, that I found my voice. I am now a PPD survivor, a mom of two. I owe my sanity to women like yourself. So, for that, I say please continue on! 🙂

  6. jamesandjax April 9, 2012 at 1:03 pm #

    I’m here, always reading. I love what you’re saying and doing. I wish I could join you in posting every day. Women like us need more women like you.

  7. Kimberly M (@momgosomething) April 10, 2012 at 9:57 am #

    It took me a really hard time to connect with other readers and draw them in. But I think it’s important to blog about mental illness. While your numbers aren’t high, someone, one person will come to your blog…that one in 5 that will read your words and it will resonate with them.
    That is what is important.
    You are helping women.

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