Male Post-Partum Depression

Male Post-Partum Depression


I chose to reflect on male post-partum depression because whenever I had learned about this illness in the past, it has always dealt with mothers suffering from it, never fathers. Therefore, I can understand why this condition is often very misunderstood. Craig Mullins’ story explains that the illness is even misread by the people suffering from it. These people often mistake the symptoms of the depression, such as frustration and anger toward your child, to be character flaws. There is a stigma against men showing any signs of weakness or sharing feelings of helplessness and confusion, but society needs to be reminded that parenting doesn’t just take a toll on mothers. Men are under an immense amount of stress and pressure to provide for their families, so it is reasonable that the life-changing demands that accompany the joys of parenthood overwhelm them, as well.

In order to treat this condition, men must first realize that they have it. Once diagnosed they finally comprehend that it is not a fault in their character, but an actual mental illness, one they can fix. Treatment includes counseling and therapy. Craig Mullins stated that he found it extremely beneficial to talk about his feelings with fathers, and even mothers, who have also experienced post-partum depression.

I believe that there is a strong correlation between belief and healing. The video “Placebo: Cracking the Code” includes many real-life experiences that prove this to be true. I thought the video to be extremely interesting, the idea that the mind can heal itself. Our minds our capable of so much more than we know. The video explains the theory has been tested and proved by patients being healed by what they didn’t know was a placebo pill. I was amazed to learn that people have been cured by placebo surgeries as well. When I think about my own experience with the placebo effect, I think about how when I have a headache, I usually take Motrin as a pain relief. Even though it doesn’t actually take affect until about 15 minutes after swallowing, I sometimes feel as if the headache has gone away almost immediately. I realize now this can relate to the placebo effect.

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  1. Josh Williams says:

    Postpartum depression was a disease that I have heard of in the past and had a lot of respect for as a legitimate illness. However I was very unaware that Male-postpartum depression even existed. When I first heard about this concept it seemed a little outlandish because males, even though they do play a large role in the new parent role, do not have any factor in the actual physical birthing process or experience any of the severe hormonal imbalances that a lot of new mothers face. Also, I felt that in comparison males have a much easier time dealing with the new adjustment to parenthood than mothers because they have so many fewer issues going on at the same time. I think that my perceptions of this illness were very altered by the emphasis on the role change women experience during new parenthood without realizing that this role also plays a major factor on men as well. The course material made me look at this in a different light in such a way that the level of stress on the mother (especially if it is someone you truly care for) will directly affect the mental status of the new father. It just goes to show that there are always going to be unseen variables in illness and something you may overlook could be the direct cause of the illness.

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