Post-Partum Depression

I was first treated by a psychiatrist when I was 19. Shy and nervous, preoccupied and fearful, I was called a spoiled brat and told to grow up. By the time I visited a psychiatrist a second time; I was married and had my first child.

I was overwhelmed with feelings of inadequacy, fearfulness and suicidal thoughts. In fact, I asked myself “How can I care for a baby when I feel so insecure?” Hospitalization, shock treatments and professional analysis helped me through. When I had my second child, the same feelings hit me again, but I kept going.

On one occasion, when my two girls were in school and I was alone all day, my fearfulness, suicidal thoughts and feelings of inadequacy returned. My thoughts raced, “I can’t stand being alone. I hate myself. I’m going crazy.” A neighbor told me about Recovery, so I decided to learn more.

Like most people, I feared attending my first meeting, but those fears diminished when people there described how I felt. Relieved, I began to believe I could get well, and I attended meetings regularly. Gradually, my thoughts changed from hopeless to hopeful and I regained self-respect.

Today I am merely a “nervous person”—more confident and less fearful than previously. Recovery International has changed my life. It’s taught me to change my beliefs from “I can’t” to “I’ll try.”

Joyce Oliver