Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Ask Her.

new mom, motherhood, parenting, emotions, mental health, PMAD, maternal mental health, anxiety, depression, ask new moms

There has been a lot of chatter about maternal mental health this last week or so.

That said, it has not all been heartwarming or supportive.

Why is that, you may wonder?

Well, because Her Royal Highness, The Duchess of Sussex, has made some statements about being vulnerable. And about not being okay.

And the internet world, as it so often does, has torn into her beyond words.

Meghan. I see you.

I see you. And in seeing you I recognize the strong possibility that you are living with a Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder (PMAD). *

I see you saying that not many people have asked if you are okay.

You're a new mom. You should be asked repeatedly.

Are you okay?

You have a new baby and live a whirlwind life.

Are you okay?

Your baby is adorable. Is he sleeping?

Are YOU sleeping?

Are you eating?

Are you taking a few moments to yourself regularly to catch your breath?

Are you experiencing scary thoughts that you're afraid to discuss with anyone?

EVEN your amazing husband?

Are you okay?

Listen, friends. Let me tell you a thing or two about Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders.

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders do not see status.


Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders do not see wealth.


Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders do not see race.

Not that, either.

Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders do not see beyond the women they find a home within.

That's the one.

PMADs develop in women who are pregnant, women who have recently given birth, and/or women who have children under the age of one year old. [Truly, I don't think that's the hard so-called "end line" and know many practitioners who would state the same.]

And Meghan Markle, The Duchess of Sussex, may very well be experiencing a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder at this very moment. *

So for all of you out there who have ripped her to shreds in the comment sections? Goodness. I hope you never know the pain. I hope you never experience the anxiety. I hope your eyes never ever look sad to anyone who knows or does not know you.

But above all, I truly hope you'll reconsider your callus remarks.

Because it doesn't matter how much money a mom may have. How much support they seem to have. Or what their title is.

Mental illness follows no rules. No laws. No restrictions.

Mental illness recognizes the internal make-up of a new mama, and reacts. Responds. Flourishes.

Mental illness is real.

Maternal mental illness is real.

Know a new mom?

Ask her.

Ask her if she is okay.


If you or someone you know is struggling with mental illness, please consider reaching out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. You do not have to be suicidal to call. You do not have to know exactly what you're struggling with, what you're feeling, you just need to know that someone is there - at the other end of the phone - ready to listen and support you. Call today: 800-273-8255

* Note: I am NOT in any way diagnosing The Duchess. AT ALL. But we know what we know. And we know what we have seen. And, for many of us, we know what we have LIVED. So take a moment. Look at her eyes. She's struggling. I hope she is getting/will soon get the help she needs. 


  1. Just went through this with my daughter. New baby boy turned 1 month old yesterday. I was on-board the 1st 3 weeks. Week 1 - she was sick, mother-in-law and I alternated baby care, so she could focus on her health, tough week all around. Week 2 helped her take care of baby, and made sure she ate/slept etc. Week 3, still making sure her needs were met while she took primary responsibility for baby. Thankfully, MIL lives 2 miles away. Support not afforded to me when each of my 3 kids were born my Mom still worked full-time, my in-laws lived in Florida and my husband ran Scout camps for a living allowing 1 day off from June 1st to the end of August. Everyone recovers differently, every time. 3 kids, 3 different recoveries. Great article.


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