"Stay-at-home mom depression" is a thing.
Reasons depression hit me as a SAHM:
- The constant exhaustion of cleaning up and chasing after a child
- The every day fight of trying to get your child to eat
- The craving for adult converastion
- The desire for mature socialization
- The every day routine of doing the same things over and over
- Going from having "you time" and "spouse time" to 5 minutes of quiet
- Feeling as if you are not contributing financially
My story of being a stay at home mother through some pictures!
A note of positivity for all you stay at home mothers like me:
"I am a stay at home mom. That doesn't mean I am lazy, stupid, or uneducated. I work hard for 24 hours a day!"
Why I Enjoy Being a Stay-At-Home Mom:
- I get to spend all of my time with my favorite tiny human
- I get to watch her grow every day
- I am there for every milestone
- I bond with my child
- I get to sit down and teach my child number, colors, shapes, etc.
- I am never lonely or home alone when my husband stands duty
- Cuddles always makes you feel better!
"Half of the time I feel like I am running an insane asylum,
the other half I feel I belong in one."
My SAHM personal story...from the beginning:
I found out I was pregnant. I was still enlisted in the military and just diagnosed with generalized anxiety and situational depression. I knew I was susceptible to postpartum depression because well, I had depression already as well as my mother suffering from this disorder when she gave birth to my sister. Not only did I have these factors against me, but in adulthood my mother and father are both suffering from this disease presently. I had all of the factors against me. I struggled between work problems, situational depression, and hormones. I was preparing to recognize the signs of postpartum depression.
The calm before the storm:
I battled postpartum depression for months. My daughter turned 6 months, I stopped working, and my medication finally had my hormones and emotions under control. I thought to myself, "I am in the clear!" "I beat the depression odds!"
But man was I wrong.
I started realizing that as much as I loved seeing my daughter grow up every day, being there for milestones, not having to wake up to go to work every day, and being able to relax when my daughter did, I was missing something.
I was missing the mature, adult interaction. I missed contributing financially. As much as I love my daughter, I missed having "me time" and getting breaks. I missed being able to just "go out" to the store without carrying a car seat, having milk ready, getting a diaper bag ready, and planning trips around my daughters naps. I missed being able to spend money leisurely without worrying about pinching pennies or paying bills.
It hit me. All at once. Everything small in the past seven months turned into a big burden. I bottled it up because I was constantly up and down about being home. One day I am happy I am home and the next, I am looking up jobs and daycare centers just to feel as if I am making an effort to do something.
I felt as if this was normal. I started talking to other stay at home mothers and they absolutely loved it. They had no cons about staying home. They were all "pro stay at home mother." Now I am not saying I despise staying home. I am saying I am the type of person who always worked. I was the type of person who was always busy out and about with others. Now that this all changed, I was slowly hitting rock bottom.
Yes, I have a happy and healthy one year old!
Ways I Alleviated Depression:
According to research, exercising is the top way to beat depression.
- I have found this to be true as I did Insanity workouts while at home and got out walking with the stroller. It made me feel more alive and full of energy.
Making friends is another helpful thing to do to beat depression.
- I have made some amazing best friends and mommy friends. Having daily play dates, friends with much more in common than others, and people to turn to when you have child questions. Not only that, but friends to enjoy spending time with!
The last way to beat depression that worked for me was fresh air.
- As much as I could, I went out and walked along Lake Superior. My daughter and I were outside as much as we could be. Being that at this time, we lived in Duluth Minnesota, it was pretty tough to get outside. Once we did and once we went to parks and out on walks, I felt better. I felt more confident with bringing my daughter out with me. The fresh air and the sunshine just for some reason, gave me more positivism.
My beautiful little girl!
If you are a stay at home mom, here's a question for you!
How does staying at home every day with your kid(s) make you feel?
Citation and Credit:
Pahr, K. (2017, January 13). Understanding and Combating Stay at Home Mom Depression. Retrieved from https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2017/01/understanding-and-combating-stay-at-home-mom-depre.html
© 2017 Dana Abbott