1 in 10 dads experience depression and anxiety after the birth of their baby. Although fathers don’t have the same physical changes birthing parents experience, many things in your life are changing as well. Everyone in the family has different roles, experiences, and expectations when you bring a new baby home. The sleepless nights, the pressure of supporting your partner, and the steep learning curve of deciphering your new child’s cues can lead to feelings of fear, worry, or anger.
Recognize The Signs:
– Persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, anger or irritability.
– Difficulty bonding with your baby.
– Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed.
– Changes in appetite or sleep patterns.
– Fatigue, low energy, or lack of motivation.
– Increased anxiety, restlessness, or feelings of worthlessness.
– Withdrawing from family and friends.
If you are experiencing these symptoms, know you aren’t alone. Depression and anxiety are completely treatable. If you are experiencing these symptoms, below are some things you can do.
Make a plan: Make a plan with your partner before your baby comes or you start experiencing symptoms. It is helpful to have a conversation about mental health so if you are feeling depressed, anxious or angry, you and your partner feel prepared to get more support. Sometimes couples will have a certain phrase they use to let their partner know they are feeling depressed or anxious or angry and need a break.
Talk to someone you trust: If you already are experiencing symptoms, start by letting someone know. Sometimes, just letting family and friends know how we are feeling can make us feel better and less alone. It can be hard to open up, but it is a vital step in getting the support and information we need to feel better.
Seek professional support: Perinatal Support Washington has a warm line where you can request to speak to another dad who has experienced anxiety and depression. Sometimes talking to another dad who has experienced postpartum depression/anxiety can make a huge difference. Call Perinatal Support Washington at 1-888-404-7763 or visit their website: https://perinatalsupport.org/warm-line/>>
Mental health affects how we show up as parents. It is so important that every new parent has the support they need – for your first child or your fourth! Every new baby is a different adventure – and experienced parents also suffer from postpartum depression and anxiety.
You can learn more on our website where we have special section devoted to New Parent Depression and Anxiety: https://www.parenttrust.org/new-parent-depression-and-anxiety/ >>
If you or someone you know is experiencing postpartum depression/anxiety, please reach out and get the support and information you need and deserve to feel better!
- Please Call Perinatal Support Washington at 1-888-404-7763 TODAY!
- Call our Family Help Line at 1-800-932-4673 for support connecting to resources.