11/1/13

If you are currently weaning your child from nursing or will eventually, PLEASE READ THIS!

Remember the wild emotional roller coaster ride during pregnancy from the raging hormones? OK. Remember the weepiness of the "Baby Blues"? Now, add the two together an multiply by infinity. You should come to something that looks like this…

What you are looking at is the effect that weaning has on a mother's hormones and emotions.

My friends and dear readers because of weaning, I have hit the bad attitude bottom. Well, I damn sure hope it is the bottom, because if my mood dips any lower I will be certifiable. Fearful that something was really wrong with me, I started reaching out to mothers I know who have already weaned, and read up on medical research focusing on the link between depression and weaning.  Thankfully, I found out that the link is real, documented and every single mother goes through this post weaning depression. Even the ones who wean gradually.

I just cannot get over the fact that I feel like the darkness has taken over, and is keeping me from breathing.  I feel like everything makes me cry; good, bad or sad.  I feel like my husband should sit in the corner as punishment for not understanding.  I am generally a very happy, glass half-full kinda girl, now I am a screw you and the glass, kinda girl.  NOT GOOD!

To combat this, every day I try to focus on happy thoughts, surround myself with the things and people I enjoy.  I also try to recognize how I am feeling and honor it, and then remind myself that this will pass. I am also using one of my favorite tricks I learned while researching Postpartum Depression; When I feel down, or worse, I am about to spiral into the abyss of depressed over-thinking obsessive darkness, I picture a STOP sign. This helps me to refocus and move on.  If you have never heard of the "STOP" sign method, give it a try next time you find yourself obsessing.  That's right, it works for all kinds of things! Just picture a big red stop sign until you can refocus your thoughts to something more productive.

I wish I had more answers, or really cures for this horribly unfortunate occurrence, but I don't. The entire purpose of this post is let people know about this. Since I did not know, I was really concerned that like the leaves falling from the trees, I was succumbing to the darkness of winter, extra early!

Turns out, you produce a ridiculous amount of estrogen once you wean, way more than you are used to. This kicks you and your hormones into overdrive.  Until the hormones level out in your body, you are stuck feeling crazy.  Of course there is a lot more medical research and in-depth explanations, but sine I am not a doctor, I will not go and screw all that info up with my poor paraphrasing. Talk to your OB or Dr.Google for more information.

 If you are currently weaning, or are about to, or even know someone who is, I hope you (or your friend) will take solace in knowing this depression and darkness after weaning is completely normal, so be prepared. In fact, if you are not opposed to taking antidepressants, I would go to the doctor and have a script on hand before you wean.  This feeling is awful, and not easy to deal with alone.  Get a support group ready, fill your days with as many happy things as possible, and know that This Too Shall Pass… Dammit it freaking better!

Bottom Line: There is a medically documented link between weaning your child from the breast, and becoming an emotional train wreck, get the tools and help you need before the darkness gets you... 


If you are dealing with these same emotions right now and want to talk, please do not hesitate to email me, or contact me through one of the many First Time Mom & Dad social media channels.


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In addition to being the founder of First Time Mom and Dad, April is an award-winning published writer. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit AprilMcCormick.com

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