Do any moms out there struggle with depression but don't want to go on meds?

Jessica - posted on 02/21/2012 ( 169 moms have responded )

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I have been struggling with my depression. I was on zoloft but weaned off so if we were to get pregnant it would be out of my system. Now i am having okay days but alot of down days and want to know how some moms handle it without the meds.

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Mrs. - posted on 02/22/2012

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Just so you know, true clinical depression, while exercise/eating well is helpful, will still need treatment beyond a good run and a good meal.



People who have not experience this, but have been "down" or had low periods tend to go overboard insisting that these things are the cure all.



No one thing will be the cure all and working with a mental health professional will reinforce this. For a multi-facetted disease like depression, you need a multi-facetted approach.



I say this because I don't want you to take any of the comments on here about exercise and diet, since it seems you have been making an effort to work on both, I don't want you feel defeated like you must not be exercising hard enough or eating well enough. Sometimes, these things can help, they certainly can't hurt, but please don't beat yourself up if they are not working for you...there is still so much more you can learn by working with a mental health professional.

Pamala - posted on 02/22/2012

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I am a mental health worker and I advise you to see a therapist and/or your Dr. Don't try and do this alone it will only make it worse. You are not alone, reach out so you can enjoy this time in your life. And get at least 30 minutes of direct sun light a day it really will help along with exercise too. Call your Dr today and ask for a referral to a therapist. You'll be glad you did ! God bless : )

Kimberly - posted on 02/22/2012

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I struggled with deperssion for many years- I feel you! zoloft didn't work for me either-I had successs with wellbutrin, but you said you wanted to be off meds...do you best to try and eat healthy, drink water, take some good multi vitimins, and get some exercise- that is what has helped me the most, but you should also get counseling or see the doctor to make sure you have covered all the bases! Part of it is also changing your mind set- you can focus on sad feelings or make some happy ones, that changed me a lot. Now I focus on how I can make myself feel, not how others actions affect my feelings, enlist your husband in this, he could make an effort to leave notes, or send you positive texts sometimes! sorry so long, but I hate to see moms suffer needlessly!

Beki - posted on 02/23/2012

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I've suffered with depression for around 13 years now and I'm only 32 but I've never taken medication. My best advice is to understand what sets off your depression for everybody it's different. Mine would usually be money or a one of my children pushing every button they could push. I would pay attention to my symptons such as watching endless hours of television, eating more, and always tired. Once you are aware of these symptons, you can start to control them. Such as forcing yourself to turn off the tv and plan more meals.



My biggest lifesaver is discovering new hobbies. I've used Pinterest and You Tube to find endless possibilities of crafts that are really easy. Start with very small projects that can be completed in a day. Small victories help you manage everything else plus it helps you focus on yourself. I've stayed at home with my daughter for around three years now and it was really challenging at first but I bought polymer clay and starting making cute trinkets. Now I've started sewing, painting a mural for my daughter's room, decorating cakes, and painting furniture. I realized I didn't have to be this creative person and create projects on my own. I could copy other people's ideas and move on from there.



Try to get outdoors as much as possible, write down a schedule, write in a journal, and find support in friends or family. I'm really close to my sister in law because we are going through the same struggles and I can be completely honest with her.



Sadly, once you've suffered through depression it will stay with you for the rest of your life even if you are on medication. Let yourself cry and smile and never be ashamed of how you feel.

Jessi - posted on 02/22/2012

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I've done a lot of research in grad school about depression. The very best, most effective treatment is exercise. Outdoor exercise in the sunshine is even better. Best of luck to you. It's sure not fun to not feel good, and getting started is the hardest part.

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Jenell - posted on 11/22/2012

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I have refused prescribed medications for depression for years! The after effects have just scared me. Over the last two years though, I've had more severe depressive bouts. As a HIM student I knew of some medications but decided to look at a more homeopathic remedy. I now take herbal supplements such as gaba, tourine, magnesium, and vitamin B (I take something called Mood Sync that contains all of these plus more) and a lovely little tincture called Fields of Flowers which you take as needed and you can mix in any beverage. Both of which I found on www.renewalenterprises.com. the site is very informative and helpful. Take it to your physician and make sure they will be good supplements for you. It is however, being reliable on pills again, but there are no harmful side effects from them. I also use a lot of essential oils. Its a lot of work but id rather be natural and less invasive then having to use a prescription. And it does help! I used to say I was having "murderous mood swings", I would feel so out of control. Now friends and family have noticed a difference and I feel sane again. It might be worth some research on your own.

Some supplements worth researching are Kril oil and St.Johns Wort as well. Both are good mood supporters as well as other things.

Best of luck to you! Depression hurts ={

Jessica - posted on 03/08/2012

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Thank you everone for all your advice!! Is going to take me awhile to read through it all! For now I am closing this to comments. I hope it can help others to though!

Carol - posted on 03/08/2012

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Hi, I've suffered with depression since i was in my late teens and have been on and off antidepressants ever since but live a full and active life..and have a teenage son :0) things that work for me when i have a "black day"

just take one thing at a time and when you achieve that congratulate yourself - even if its as simple as making a cuppa

set small goals

have some pamper time each day..even if it means retreating to the bathroom -

chat to your close friends who will support you and not condemn you and there are meds you can take in pregnancy - think of meds as a tool to solve or manage the issues you face with daily - dont be labelled by them

try and go for a walk

dont condemn yourself..you dont walk alone in this journey.many mums feel the same as you do and they come through

keep in touch with your doctor or counsellor if you have one or get referred if you havent done so already

hope that helps--sending you a hug thru cyberspace

Carol

Heather - posted on 03/08/2012

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I went on Celxia before I had my third child. I didn't take it while I was pregnant but started again after she stopped breast feeding. I did the counselors but it didn't help. I still take it 4 years later and can feel how bad it gets if I am not on them. I stopped cold turkey once and thought i would loose my mind. It does make me a happier person and I am able to not get as agitated as I use to.

Mariaelena - posted on 03/08/2012

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I am actually almost 9months pregnant & was told last year when i was pregnant with my oldest daughter that it was a possiblity and now being pregnant again with my 2nd child whom is also a girl i was diagnosed @ 6 months, i have been told way before kids but never wanted to listen & now i know i have too. No meds for now, I just look @ my daughter & remember she is my happiness, evn with alot of down days but after i have my daughter i am gettin put on them asap, i dnt wanna miss anything else with having 2 beautiful baby girls! I miss havin Happy Days!

Lyssa - posted on 03/08/2012

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it's true that everyone is different when it comes to depression, because it depends on the kind of depression. if you are diagnosed with clinical depresion or postpartum depression, it's a true chemical imbalance that needs to be corrected through meds, or it will only get worse. if it's situational depression, as gloria had stated she had it before she got pregnant, she had situational depression, and that will resolve itself in most cases. but then she had the hornone imbalance after pregnancy which caused postpartum and had to then go on meds. if you have more than just situational depression, you need professional help to nip it. meds and counseling are a great combination, and eventually you can wean down and maybe even go off of the meds. but never just stop taking them, that could be a medical crisis depending on what you're taking. and also, realize that it's out of your control. you cannot control how your hormones react. that's something that people with depression have a hard time accepting. so to all you ladies out there suffering from any depression other than sitauational, get on the proper meds and see a counselor. don't be embarrassed or feel ashamed. you need to get the proper help so you can be the best mommy you can be!

Holly - posted on 03/07/2012

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I had no depression until I had my son 3 years ago, then had severe PPA, PPD, and insomnia. Now I am on Lexapro. I have tried to wean twice, once with a major relapse. Now I have managed to decrease my dose, but do not want to wean -- my symptoms are debilitating.



I tried everything to prevent the need for phamecuticals -- food, exercise, therapy, yoga. Regardless, my symptoms persists. Depression affects everyone differently. It is not a well-understood disease.



The good news is that the research on SSRI use during pregnancy isn't all that scary. There are some short-term risks to the fetus, for a very small fraction of pregnancies.



If I end up having a second child, I am nearly certain I will not be able to get off the Lexapro before getting pregnant. It's not what I want to do, but it is the only way for me to be a successful, healthy mom.



Get a good mental health care doctor, and talk it through with them. Best of luck to you and your family with this difficult decision!!

Gloria - posted on 03/07/2012

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I was dealing with depression long before my first pregnancy. I had lost my mother a few years prior to getting pregnant and didn't take it well. My pregnancy was not easy to go through as well since my relationship crashed and burned. However, I took the first step in the beginning of my pregnancy to see a therapist. I talked about everything that was bothering me and upsetting me. It helped me deal with my past and current situations. After I had my son, I waited a few months before deciding to try an antidepressant. I usually had a hard time sleeping at night and I was not in the best mood during the day. I took Trazadone for two years and then an anti-anxiety med for a year. It has both helped me through my toughest times.



About last year, I had to stop taking both due to passing out without any warning signs such as dizziness or feeling hot or funny. After speaking with my ENT about my sleeping issues, who is also a sleep specialist, he prescribed me with a muscle relaxer to help me sleep at night. I must say, after a few years on meds and talking to a therapist as well as a psycharist, I am no longer on antidepressants.



I worked through everything with counselors, therapist and psychiatric help. I had to make minor to big changes in my life to make my life a bit more enjoyable. I am a single mom of a soon to be four year old son and I am feeling happy and in a good mood. I am feeling healthier and more energized. You have to understand your emotions, your body and your surroundings. They all affect our moods and how we perceive life on a day to day basis. Sometimes, implementing positive changes in small segments helps set a new life up in a well thought out way. Knowing what you want out of life and knowing how to go about it with a little help, can ease some of your worries and stressors.



Everyone is different when it comes to depression. Sometimes meds may be the only way to deal with it. Sometimes a combo of meds and therapy and/or psychiatric help. Talking to your doctor can help determine which meds can best suit your needs with the "less" side effects and may even make suggestions for you to consider before deciding on which route you want to use. Meds may not be for everyone, so do your research, talk to your doctor and discuss your options including alternative meds.

Christina - posted on 03/07/2012

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Hey Jessica, I been there and I had it so bad with after my first child and I was on meds and decided to just get off of it and believe me it was so hard and there were a lot of bad days but I pulled through. I didn't give up and I did stay busy and I made sure I didn't have time to let those days happen and there were times it did and I promise you there will be more before it gets better but you have to be strong if you want to take control of this. I was there and I know how you feel and I also talked to my grandmother and my bestfriend which did help me. I talk to them on the phone because they lived 12 hours away but there were times that didn't help either. I did not want to have meds make me feel better and I chose to be stronger and take control of my depression without meds. Was it smart or the right time, maybe not but all I knew was that I did not want meds to make me happy and than have to eventually stop taking them because someone told me to. I did overcome it but it was hard but I beat it, if you really want to overcome this Jessica you have to admit it will be hard but you will be stronger, go out with friends or family, I didn't have both around at the time but I made myself go walk in the park, I took up a hobby to keep me busy, I baked, I even went to a spa to treat myself and I just focused on healing and your husband or partner you can turn to and have him support you. My husband took care of my first son since I had baby blues for 6 months and while I was on meds and the crying, the outburst, not acknowledging my newborn son at the time crying my husband stepped in to help when I could not. I felt bad afterward but I was so depressed I couldn't get a grip of myself until one day I just snapped out and said I was not going to let depression take control. IF you ever want to talk my email is christian_colbert@hotmail.com. Trust me I been there and it is hard to talk to someone and seek advise when the people have no clue about what it is like to be depressed, to feel helpless and upset that you are depressed. Anyways be strong and it does help to talk to someone.

Darlene - posted on 03/07/2012

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Exercise helps as well as tanning. The Vitamin D that you get from tanning helps increase seratonin...it's like sunlight. Seeing a therapist would also be helpful.

Lucid - posted on 03/07/2012

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YOGA! love yourself! go beyond the busy mind and connect to your highest self.. move those blockages out of your body! you are okay! you are perfect! but the mind can be sooo heavy! i hope you find yoga! breathe deep, smile wide, eat well!.. know that it is the way of things and emotions to be in motion. to keep changing.. let them! shine on! love love and light allways...

Rachel - posted on 03/07/2012

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After my daughter was born in 2010, I had some postpartum depression. I took encapsulated placenta and found it to work GREAT! However, at this point, it wouldn't be an option. I have been learning a lot about essential oils, which have SO MANY uses, including helping to uplift the mood and affect the brain's chemistry in a beneficial way. For example, many people (myself included) have found citrus oils to be really helpful. I use a couple of blends, called Balance and Serenity, as well as bergamot, every morning and evening. For me, it makes a BIG difference! I notice that I am happier, and have more energy, as well as feeling more.... well, balanced. :-)

I can send you a little bit of mine to try, if you want! You can email me at rachel215@hotmail.com

Brenda - posted on 03/07/2012

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I was off Zoloft to get pregnant, but had to go back on it for 8 months of my pregnancy. We have a healthy 5 year old daughter today, so I wouldn't be too afraid of Zoloft. Of course, it's up to you and your doctor. I understand there are differing viewpoints.



However, I still struggle with depression. My advice to you would be to keep moving even when you do not feel like it. Move your muscles! Get out of the house and walk in the park or at the mall. My second piece of advice would be to make goals everyday in the morning. Decide what you are going to accomplish for the day. It only needs to be one or two things. Some days, I only accomplish one thing- such as sweep the walkway, put in a load of laundry, clean the toilet and the next day clean the sink. If you can do more, great! Then... treat yourself to something nice, such as, a spa bath, Dairy Queen, manicure, etc. I spent our whole American Express credit card at the spa! $3,000 worth! Yikes, but it was worth it for my sanity- and my husbands!



The worse thing you can do is to sit around all day- at the computer or TV. Be careful to not eat too much also. Drink lots of water and eat more dark green vegetable- broccoli and salads. Red and Orange peppers brighten up your day and salads also and they are on the sweet side!



Read good materials and stay away from watching the news. I enjoyed watching the 700 Club which is on CBS in the mornings where I am. Watch comedies and wholesome family movies. Listen to uplifting music. Don't allow anything negative to enter your eyes or ears. Whatever goes in, comes out!



I drink coffee- about 2 cups daily, but I stayed away from soda which effects blood sugar wildly. I did enjoy milkshakes and malts though! :) The milk part is at least good!



Hope this helps and if you want to talk again, just post again. I am not trying to get pregnant anymore, so I am on two anti-depressants now and doing well.

Charlene - posted on 03/07/2012

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Someone below suggested taking some multi-vitamins. I happen to sell some all natural (plant based) supplements that might be your answer. I know all about having depression and having low feelings. I lost my husband just over 90 days ago to a fatal car accident because of someone else's mistake and was left to raise my 3 yr old by myself. These products have helped me make it through the days, especially my down ones.

Check it out. My email is on there if you have questions

charlenebier.myitworks.com

Jessica - posted on 03/07/2012

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The smartest thing you could do would be to get back on zoloft. Don't be a martyr. It sounds like the pros outweigh the cons of taking medication. I take it. It has helped me be a better mother. Please reconsider your choice to stop. There are also safe options for pregnancy. Make an appointment today. Take care of yourself :-)

Lela - posted on 03/07/2012

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Darna, your post brought tears to my eyes. After I sent my story to Jessica yesterday, I re-read her question and realized I had gotten off the subject of how to handle everything WITHOUT medication. So, I started thinking my answer wasn't really much help for her. But, I've gone back and read several posts that pretty much say what I was trying to say -- it's okay to take medication -- even during the pregnancy. Thank you for your story! Lela

Karie - posted on 03/07/2012

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I have been taking 100 mg of Zoloft for 8 years now. My son is 3. I took Zoloft throughout my whole pregnancy. My son came out perfect, no problems at all. My doctors said Zoloft is the recommended drug to be on during pregnancy IF you need to be on something. Hope this helps :).



My doctors where at the UW Womens Health on Junction Rd in Madison.

Shelby - posted on 03/07/2012

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do you suffer from depression or is there more going on? ie Bi-polar. You should definitely see a therapist either way. And the people who say that antidepressants don't work are fools. I take an antidepressant and a mood stabilizer every day. It is the best thing I ever did for myself and my children. Depression is a real disease with real treatment.

Barbara - posted on 03/07/2012

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I was on welbutrin for a long time and weaned off due to side effects. I have been taking a vitamin B complex with a higher dosage of b12 and that really seems to be working for me. I have researched it and my sister n law was taking it as well and it helps. it also helps with energy and your metabolism as well. give it a try. you need to take it every day for atleast 2 weeks so it has time to enter into your system!

Kim - posted on 03/07/2012

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I always struggled with depression but didn't want to take meds. Tried some and hated them. So after researching the effects of a gluten free, dairy free diet (my son was on it for autism and it worked wonders for him) but through the research I found studies where people with severe mental issues like Schizophrenia were able to completely stop taking all meds if they followed this diet. I figured what the heck, it couldn't hurt me to try. It takes a full two weeks to get anything out of your system and I really couldnt tell a complete difference for almost a month. But after that my husband will tell you it was like being married to a different person. I smiled more in a day than I would in a month. I was no longer angry with him all the time. I also found out I needed to cut sugar out because it would drain my energy level. Since being gluten free, I still have dairy in limited amounts, I would never go back. I miss a lot of different things but they are not worth the life I was living while eating them. And thankfully there are a lot of different foods available and Internet support for this lifestyle. It's hard at first but does get easier.

Alex - posted on 03/07/2012

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Here is nothing wrong with medication, but studies show that regular exercise works too. Also make sure you are getting enough sleep and spending time with friends. For me, counseling and exercise helped a lot.

ELEANOR - posted on 03/07/2012

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The Lord's strong presence in our lives is the best cure for depression.but with the lord's help,we may also seek the best medical help and ask him to use it to heal us....(See Psalm 143:7)

Sandra - posted on 03/07/2012

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I have also been dealing with depression for the past 45 years . My mother always said I was a teary child who was always unhappy. Found I had worse problems when pregnant and have a daughter with Cystic Fibrosis. My depression got worse after my 2nd child and 18 years ago went on Zoloft. Have been on and off it for years. Been to many years of therapy to no avail.When I turned 40 I took the bull by the horns and went and saw a natuopath and they found I was yeast intolerant also my thyroid is borderline. On looking back at my family history my father was a very depressed person who was never diagnosed and used alcohol and drugs to mask it all.I have now sought other advise and found a genetic predisposition is prevailent in my family . I have had to realize that some people need to use medication to keep the brain in balance so each day I take my meds and go to work a happy healthy person and my family enjoy my company. Keep your chin up and keep asking questions one day someone will find the key for you also and life will be good.

Catherine - posted on 03/07/2012

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I have struggled with depression for about 20 years, have taken several different medications at one point i was taking zoloft and another medication for depression as well. I went off them after the miscarriage, though i was told being on the medications and being pregnant would be ok. I was able to go through my pregnancy without the medications though i struggled the thought of my unborn child was enough to keep me going...though moodier than i would have liked. 6 weeks after the birth of my son PPD hit me like a ton of bricks. I was so afraid that the depression was there to stay and didn't want to have my son see me cry all the time and think that was normal. I was lucky there are alot of resources where i live that assist pre and post natal mental health. I did go back on medication to help me get back on track and balance out my emotions. It's been a struggle and I think it always will be but I know that and while working out and eating well, having great supportive people around me only goes so far - the rest i think is learning how to deal with the feelings, and knowing when we need help and how to get it. use your resources, coucelors, therepists, doctors they are they to assist and they understand where we are comming from because it's their job. Knowing that other women struggle makes me feel normal and I talk about my depression to the family and friends. If they understand then maybe if for whatever reason I don't see the signs then maybe they willl!



You are not alone, please don't think you are. What works for one person may not work for another but learning your triggers could be a huge hurdle to overcome but well worth the work it takes to get there and figure it out.



An old friend told me 15 years ago " you can't love someone until you love yourself " I struggled with this then and i continue to struggle with this now. I will forever remember these words and know that someone saw me for who I was.



Good luck, and I hope this helps.

Jo-Anne - posted on 03/07/2012

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Aloha Jessica, I was in a similar state just 8 weeks ago. I met someone in a "class" who turned me on to Mila - The Miracle Chia Seed by Lifemax. I am back to my old self in just 2 months. My "depression" started w being a stay at home mom at 38 w no help. On & off I would get bad blues & 2 yrs ago it started to turn into agoraphobia. I can honestly say that this proprietary chia seed blend of the highest omega3 absolutely changed me. I'd love to send you a bag to try because I now am a distributor because of it's incredible effect on me. My website is http://lifemax.net/joannebraden you can look around to begin your research. What Mila did for me was balance my hormones - changed my life & my family's life so much so, that my husband who is in interventional cardiology has also become a distributor & sharing it with doctors & patients alike. Feel free to contact me for a sample: milajoannebraden@gmail.com This is an amazing whole raw food even discussed on Dr. Oz show. It is changing lives all over the world & now I am thrilled to be a part of it - I even have my own business with Lifemax helping so many while I remain a stay at home mom :)

Kathy - posted on 03/06/2012

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Jessica I was on zoloft also and continued on it until I became prego. Then weaned myself off of it just as you did once the baby was born the doc recommended I go w/1/2 the doseage as before just to help with the baby blues which follow giving birth. I had some good and some difficult days just as you described. I did whatever to change the scenery atmosphere or whatever. I would go sit at the park or walk the mall and just do what it took to help my moods and changing your room area or whatever does help. I was lucky and had a mother in law whom I could talk to and realize what I was feeling or thinking was normal women things. She helped me to know I wasnt weird or a freak and she had some of the same thoughts I had. In other-words we both were normal and could laugh later after the moods/thoughts seem to pass. I also did a lot of praying during this time and kept reminding myself if I feel moody so does my family and I did everything to keep them from going thru the hell I was feeling. If you have a best friend this is when you learn they love you no matter what and will hold your hand and walk along beside you to ease your frustrations and pain. It helped me just to know I wasnt alone and other women think and go thru the same stuff. Hormones can be tricky and frightening at times and you will find someone thru it all who truly cares and wants to help you over the hurdles just as you can also help them. Good luck

Amy - posted on 03/06/2012

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Hi, Jessica -

I don't handle it without the meds. Having said that, however, the medication isn't sufficient to manage the darkness, the clouds, the disorganisation, the inability to think clearly, the self-condemnation, etc. I have found enormous value in learning mindfulness meditation practices which have been collected for people with depression by Jon Kabat-Zinn and his Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction. I have also found great relief in Al-Anon, a group formed for family and friends of alcoholics, but which works as well for people from dysfunctional families. If you have had any relationship with an alcoholic, drug user, or if you have a compulsive relationship with food, I highly recommend exploring the 12 Step programs.



Please know you are not alone. All my best -

Michelle - posted on 03/06/2012

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Michelle here I have a chronic dysthymia it's caused by my life I am on quitaplne and paxili got told I am on that for lIfe by my mental health nurse I have a chronic low mood it is who I am

Darna - posted on 03/06/2012

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As I was reading through your responses, I noticed at least one response similar to the one I am about to write, but I think it's so important that I will risk repeating what has already been said.



I am a mother who chose to continue my therapy and my depression medication (Zoloft & Wellbutrin XL) while I was pregnant. Was it a risk? Some would say so, but my seven year-old appears to be amazingly healthy & happy, so I would say not. Not taking my medication would have been more of a risk, because I would not have taken care of myself or my growing baby so well had I been suffering from so many bad days. I shudder to think what postpartum might've been like without it.



I go through phases when all I want is to not have to take my medication every day for the rest of my life...but then I consider what kind of mother I would be if I was not taking my medication. My son deserves a mom who is not irritated or morose all the time. With medication, he has one who is relatively happy, able to handle stress, and able to bounce back from life's downers. He deserves a childhood in which he doesn't have to worry about why his mom is always so sad or distant. When it comes right down to it, I take my medication for my son's sake, because no matter how much I exercise, how many supplements I take, or how hard I try to avoid my triggers, I need the medicine.



I was diagnosed with major depression 15 years ago, so I know how bad down days can be- I had too many of them. If your depression has been around for a while, you may have to accept that it truly is clinical and that a healthy diet, lots of exercise, or anything else, no matter how beneficial, will not make the depression go away without the support of therapy and medication.



Ultimately, you must do what is right for you. I sincerely hope you find a way to stop having so many down days, and to have days that are better than just okay, because you deserve to have great ones! Best wishes!

Marieke - posted on 03/06/2012

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An aid that may assist which is probably an addon from another lady that replied, which was in relation to Positive thoughts. But sometimes when you are feelling so down it is hard to be even a little positive. I guess when you are feeling like that, your goal is to just feel a little better, don't put any pressure on yourself. I have had experience with Enlightened messages which are basically loving positive messages to pep up your spirit. You may find it a beneficial tool when you are low. Here is the link if you are interested & by all means share with others to help make them feel better too. Reading all the responses makes me soo happy that you have many women and fellow mum's who care so much. http://www.enlightenedmessages.com/free/... p.s this also includes a FREE Quiet Mind Meditation which is great to do every evening before bed. I hope this helps you....i know it helped me:)

Take care & i hope you are feeling better:)

Marieke

Leora - posted on 03/06/2012

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I have struggled with depression for a long time, especially after having kids. I did not react well to meds when I was on them, everyone is different. You know what is best for you. I found that when I tried to be on my own and not talk to anyone it did get worse. If I could find some friends or therapist to talk to it really did make things better and more hopeful. It reminded me that there are people who know what you are going through. I use all natural supplements from a chiropractor that I go to, which really help me and some essential and non-essential amino acids. I learned a bunch through a book called The Mood Cure. but I agree with everyone else who commented, you will need some outside help to figure out what is best for you.

Cassie - posted on 03/06/2012

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HI Jessica, this might seem silly.Something that really helped me was exercise, the natural endorphins really helped. I’m not a health freak at all, I don’t even look like I exercise. I notice a huge difference when I do and don’t work out. My mom makes fun of me because I need to walk or do yoga (me time) at least 5 days a week.

Sandy - posted on 03/06/2012

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social interaction, sunshine & vitamin b6 (timed release). Also you need to get to the root of why you are depressed. I used to think life was dull and not very good. I now am a very happy person. I have bad days like everyone else but overall am very happy with my life. I had to do some mental exercises When I would think of a negative thought, I would make myself think of a positive one to counter it. Then I would make myself think of positive thoughts about things in general. It takes work but it will get better.

Tanya - posted on 03/06/2012

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i struggle with it all the time...i am not a fan of drugs since i feel once i go on them what happens when i want to come off...the depression is still there. i am trying to deal with it better myself, usually eat away my depression which doesnt help with the ever expanding waist band...so now i am trying to replace food with exercise..not only will it help my weight, the endorphines help my depression....so i suggest exercise lots

Jessica - posted on 03/06/2012

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I went off my meds the week I found out I was pregnant.



Now my son is almost 14 months and I definitely have some blue days. (I actually just blogged about it today: http://thejoyfulhousewife.net/2012/03/mo...)



I recommend a very good book about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, by Dr. David Burns: http://www.amazon.com/Feeling-Good-New-M... You can look inside the book on Amazon.



This teaches you how your thoughts are connected to how you feel, how to notice the distortions, and what to do about it. I notice that when I lack sleep, I'm especially sad, and when I'm sad and blue, my thoughts get really out of whack!



This type of therapy has changed my life. I can recommend a couple of other books and I love to talk about this subject - feel free to PM me.

Amy - posted on 03/06/2012

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I have not been to a doctor about it, but yes, I do struggle with it. I know it's depression because for no reason, I feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders and there is nothing that I can do. I have 2 kids, 2 and 4. For the most part, to handle it so that it doesn't reflect on them, I talk about it with my husband or friends. Also, I do excercise every morning...sometimes I go to the gym, but if I do not want to leave the house, I do a youtube exercise clip...yoga and or meditation. It helps a little and makes me feel like things are a little easier.

My advice to you is to track it when it's at it's worst...like if it hits really hard before or after your period, OR another time specifically if something trying is happening in life. It will make you more aware of what makes it worse and when....then you will know it's triggers.

I hope that you find some of my advice helpful...just a couple things that work for me. Take care.

Kathleen - posted on 03/06/2012

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It is possible you have low levels of Vit D. Ask your doctor to check your blood levels. Perhaps you need a Vit D supplement.

Penny - posted on 03/06/2012

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Hi Jessica. I would recommend going to a health food store, Whole Foods for example, and asking for a natural remedy. I have been taking what is called Holy Basil for over two years for my depression. No side effects and it works. Hope it does for you too!

Angela - posted on 03/06/2012

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I tried the whole therapist and medication thing and it just did not work for me. I know this sounds silly, but find something you love to do... a hobby. I do small gardening, etc. I also write in a journal and every morning I look in the mirror and smile very big and tell myself it's going to be a wonderful day! I know this probably all sounds goofy,but it really helped me (and I'm a mom of 5 with two special needs kids). Good Luck.

Shari - posted on 03/06/2012

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I am a single mom of 5 kids and have been for about 12 years, to be perfectly honest with you, I could not have made without my faith in God. When I couldn't take anymore I would cry out to God. I would say to Him that I turn my problems over to You Lord, and He would always take care of us.

Shannon - posted on 03/06/2012

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U r on the right track by admitting the problem. As someone who struggles with depression from time to time, I always found it therapeutic 2 talk to someone I completely trus t about the issue. Not talking about what u are struggling with can make your problem worse. But in some cases, needs may be needed as well.

Katherine - posted on 03/06/2012

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There are other medications that are pregnancy safe, I'm on a mood stabilizer for my bipolar that i've struggled a long time with, and I have been stable for over a year. Being pregnant now, luckily this med is one of the safe ones. A happy mom is better then a sad one. Make priorities.

Stephany - posted on 03/06/2012

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I heartily disagree with the comment about the I effectiveness of antidepressant medication; some women, including me, have had severe pms symptoms that diet and exercise alone could not alone remedy. Chemical imbalances or genetic predispositions can be helped immensely by natural means, but there are times that, in my life, where an antidepressant has kept me moving forward with my life. Best of luck to you, whatever route (or combination of routes ) you decide to pursue.

Dorothy - posted on 03/06/2012

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I went through this exact same thing. I felt guilty that my sons would not have daddy so I put up with the abuse until one night he almost killed me. During one of his crack rages. The police took the kids and I to the hospital and they referred us to women against abuse. We entered a shelter (transitional housing ) WAB helped me obtain full custody and the necessary restraining orders and adequate housing. He has supervised visits but he doesn't come around any more. Sister you have to step out on faith in yourself as a mom and PROTECT your baby! All u have to do is let her pediatrician no what's going on they will document this... Make a paper trail. Well for me that was 10 years ago my kids are in therapy and they have all the necessary supports in place. My boys both have anxiety disorders as a result of my poor decision to stay with him, they are afraid of him. But I pray , I meditate and do stress management exercises to keep up with them. I have no familial supports but I GOT SOCIAL SERVICES!!!

Annie - posted on 03/06/2012

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Get yourself a good christian counselor to help you learn how to deal with the down days. If you have been struggling with depression for many years (as I have) even with the medication, there will be down days. You need to learn to cope with the downs because they come very unexpectedly. Pray a lot, share your pain with someone you can trust and when you feel like being alone, find someone to meet up with. Wanting to be alone can snowball into not wanting to leave the house or have contact with anyone incredibly quickly. The best way to get out of that funk is to make yourself be around people. Even if you can't be with people you know, just make a trip to the grocery store so that you are not all alone. When you are having a down day, the things that you don't feel like doing are often the things that will make you feel better (eating healthy, exercising, going outside, talking to people, cleaning the house). My biggest advice to you (from years of experience) is to find a very trusted friend that you can share your struggles with and find a christian counselor and see them regularly. I hope that this helps you. Read your Bible (start with the psalms) and pray.

Celeste - posted on 03/06/2012

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I am sorry to hear you are struggling, but know you aren't alone! Don't be shy to seek out a naturopath. Alternative medicine and herbs can work wonders. Naturopaths will spend time investigating if you have food or other sensitivities that are contributing. For example, if I eat refined starches I'm exhausted and have very low energy and feel "the blues".

Of course, depression is complex, it's can be a combination of mental, physical and spirit. Some things I have done that work very well are EXERCISING, literally run out the door for 20 minutes. The endorphins are natural pain killers, the oxygen and blood flow will also make you feel better (later). DANCE, no one could feel depressed while Swing Dancing, its such a funny dance. You're connected to someone (a partner) and are engaging your mind & body to do something different. Find a class. Lastly, help someone else with bigger problems than you have. I've helped at a local food bank when I feel "low". Its a wake up call that my life isn't so bad! It makes me feel so grateful for what I do have going right. Those are a couple coping mechanisms and ideas. I'm sure it's only part of your puzzle, but hopefully something in here will give you ideas. Good luck sweetie!

Nicole - posted on 03/06/2012

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My son is 5 and I still struggle with it. I also struggle badly with anxiety and panic attacks. I notice the depression hits when I am not busy. When I sit at home all I want to do is sleep and mope around. I found by keeping busy I can keep the depression at bay. As for the anxiety, no such luck. The dr's had me on all sorts of medication for the depression and anxiety but I couldn't handle it anymore so I weaned myself off, which was misery. But try to find things you enjoy either with or without your children. Also, find a health food store and get some recommendations on some natural alternatives. I am on a few different natural alternatives which help a lot. Vitamins are amazing.

Paula - posted on 03/06/2012

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I too struggle with depression. Definitely I would try a therapist. Hard to believe just talking can help but it can with the right counselor. I also opted to try a more natural remedy and used St Johns Wart which helped me tremendously.

Dannielle - posted on 03/06/2012

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I was diagnosed Bipolar awhile ago...never thought I would ever have kids. But after many failed medicational attempts on my doctor's end I decided I would rather just deal with the ups and downs on my own (sans medication). Several years pass and I meet the man of my dreams. Shortly after we get married (a few months after) and a few months into our marriage I am pregnant with our first child. Pregnancy was hell without the medication but I managed...then a little while after having my daughter I became pregnant with my son. I did all this while attending college. My kids are (almost) 3 years old and (almost) 7 months right now...I am still in college and I still have many ups and downs but I will try my hardest not to go on medication again...all it did was numb me to reality...and I would much rather enjoy my children without it. But by no means is that for everyone. If medication works for you, stick with it!!

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