Tag Archives: twitter

#PPDChat 10.06.14: Art of Self-Care

ppdchat-10-06-14Guilt over what we should be doing for ourselves often translates into a serious lack of self-care. We forget to gift ourselves the grace we so often extend to everyone else in our lives to those who need it most – us.

I am constantly saying how important self-care is to the journey of motherhood. We HAVE to fill our own pitchers before we can pour ourselves to those around us. If we don’t, we will have nothing to pour into the cups of those we love and soon we will turn to dust.

Join me tonight as we chat about the art of self care through the art of self-grace.

Gift yourself grace, and steep yourself in the self-care you deserve.

See you on Twitter at 830pm ET!

#PPDChat 09.21.14: When Darkness Falls – SAD & PPD

ppdchat-09-22-14Fall Equinox.

When I was a kid, I loved those words. It meant the leaves would soon change colour, setting the landscape ablaze in yellows, oranges, reds, and the sunlight would carry the newly found rainbow into the sky as it sank beneath the horizon earlier and earlier every night.

It also meant my birthday was only 4 days away.

But now, as I have journeyed several days down the path of life, I don’t enjoy those two little words as much any more. In fact, they make me sad. I strive to find the joy in autumn and not focus too much on the shorter days and looming increase in hours spent in the dark, away from the sun.

I moved back to the northeast United States a few years ago. The first year I was here, Sandy hit. I have not been right since. The cloudy days, the shorter days, the snow (dear LORD, the snow), the dark – it has me sinking into the depths of my couch in the winter, fighting for any shred of happiness I can find. I finally had a discussion with my doctor about it last year and we realized it may actually be a combination of PTSD from Sandy and the settling in of SAD.

So now, this year, I am prepared. I fought back last year with medication (finally) but after doing everything else I could do as well – a therapeutic SAD lamp, Vitamin D, socialization, etc. But this year, I’m still on my meds, I use my light every morning as I drink my first cup of coffee and catch up with friends on social media, easing myself into my day.

Tonight, we’ll discuss not only the very real issue of Seasonal Affective Disorder, but how that may complicate PPD and things you can do to battle both at the same time. I hope you’ll join us.

See you tonight at 830pm ET!

#PPDChat Topic 08.04.14: Getting Pro-active: Facing Pregnancy after a Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder

ppdchat-08-04-14

Along with countless women, I have been in this boat. It’s an intimidating boat, let me tell you what. But, with some preparation, things don’t have to be quite that scary.

My first experience with a PMAD was frightening. I had no idea what was happening in my head in addition to trying to get myself adjusted to motherhood for the first time around. Talk about one helluva screwball. Thanks, life.

I survived. My daughter survived. Did we come out unscathed? No. But I definitely came out wiser. I view my first brush with PP OCD as one heck of a learning curve which prepared me for the second time I found myself in an even deeper valley than the first.

Halle Berry said it best on Oprah: “Once you’ve been through depression, it gets easier to get out because you have a road map.” Each episode, while it may have different nuances and causes, is essentially the same basic experience deep down. You get used to battling your way out of it and yes, you absolutely have a road map. You learn to recognize the curves and know how to adjust for them well before they even appear on your horizon.

Just as with a road trip, preparation is key. While even the best preparation in the world does not guarantee that a PMAD will stay at bay, it does empower you and enables you to seek help sooner rather than later.

I sincerely hope you’ll join us tonight to discuss the importance of preparing yourself and your loved ones for the possibility of another bout of a PMAD after the birth of a sibling. I have experienced both a planned and an unplanned pregnancy after my episodes so there will be lots of insight into both situations, including a very honest discussion about depression and other mental health issues during pregnancy.

Tonight’s chat is an important one. Don’t miss it. See you on Twitter at 830pm ET!

Meltzer Brody and Stuebe Guest Announcement

Announcing the #PPDChat Guests for 11.11.13: Drs. Samantha Meltzer-Brody & Alison Stuebe

Meltzer Brody and Stuebe Guest Announcement

I am beyond excited about Monday night’s #PPDChat, y’all!!!

We’ll be chatting with none other than the fabulous Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody and Dr. Alison Stuebe, both with UNC’s Perinatal Psychiatry Unit. This is a ground-breaking program here in the United States for women struggling with Perinatal Mood Disorders. They are currently focusing on research which examines the biology behind the relationship behind depression and breastfeeding. Dr. Stuebe writes:

“I’m happy to report that I’m a doctor, and I do think of this — in fact, at UNC, we’re starting a 5-year NIH-funded study to try to understand the relationship between breastfeeding, postpartum depression, and infant attachment.  Our pilot data suggest that this relationship is complicated. We recruited 52 women who were intending to breastfeed and either did or did not have a history depression and/or anxiety. During pregnancy, mothers provided baseline blood samples, completed questionnaires, and had a standardized psychiatric interview to assess their history. Mothers came to our lab with their babies at 2 and 8 weeks postpartum, and we measured hormone levels while they breastfed their babies.”

For those of us who have been through a Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder, we know that the relationship we have with how we feed our babies is a tough one. There are so many factors to consider. Dr. Meltzer-Brody & Stuebe are investigating this further and have graciously agreed to share their experiences and insights on Monday.

I sincerely hope you will be able to make it to chat because it will be a great one!

You can read more about Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody & Dr. Alison Stuebe by clicking on their names. Be sure to follow them on Twitter (usernames are in the announcement above) before the chat!

#PPDChat Topic: Like A Butterfly: Transformational Power of a Perinatal Mood Disorder

ppdchat 09-30-13

Today, we’re focusing on the ways Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders change us. Many of us know all too well the amount of energy it takes to fight through to ourselves during a Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder. As someone who is now able to look back at my experiences instead of being caught in the midst of it, I see how that fight changed my outlook on life as well as changed almost everything inside me. While I have been remodeled, some of the old me remains. Isn’t this the way with all trauma and substantial life experiences? We are constantly growing and changing as life ebbs and flows through us, are we not?

The 1:00pm ET chat will be a prelude to tonight’s chat with @WalkerKarraa regarding the amazing transformational power Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders have in the lives of the women who experience them. I hope you’ll join us as we casually explore and discuss the ways PMAD’s have changed our lives during the afternoon chat.

Then at 8:30pm ET, Dr. Walker Karraa will join us. I am excited about her joining #PPDChat as a guest, particularly on this topic as she has been talking to several women about this very thing, allowing her amazing insight into the overall transformational power of PMAD’s in our lives.

To say I am excited about today’s topic would be a huge understatement. I cannot wait to discuss this with y’all!!! For more information about Walker and today’s topic, go here.

See you at 1:00pm ET and hope you will join us at 8:30pm ET as well!

#PPDChat Topic 02.25.13: Outta Steam – Coping on the Hard Days

ppdchat-02-25-13Motherhood, heck, parenthood period, doesn’t come loaded with sick days or days off when the going gets tough. No, we have to steel ourselves to push through it. Sometimes we soar right on through whatever is flung in our direction and then there are times when we feel we fail miserably.

It’s not easy.

With a Postpartum Mood Disorder on board, it gets even muckier. We barely have the energy to fight that in addition to taking care of our children, let alone tossing anything else on top of the flames. So how do you handle it when a tough day (or days) hits when you’re struggling? What if you get sick? What if everyone is sick? Or there’s an emergency family situation? Or..the list could go on.

Today’s chat will focus on these situations. Feel free to join us to vent, share tips, or just hang out. We don’t promise to instantly cheer you up or fix all the tough in your life, but after today’s chats over on Twitter, you’ll know you aren’t alone.

See you there!

 

 

Postpartum Depression is Too Important to Discuss on Twitter

I get that my approach to Social Media and blogging isn’t exactly the most scientific. My roots are not in numbers, analytics, or ROI. While it’d be nice to be earning money at what I do, that’s not why I am here. I’m here to help people. Not to garner the most comments, followers, likes, retweets, etc.

Sure, it’s nice when you manage to get something to trend or have a really good day with retweets on Twitter, but bottom line? I am here to help moms and families struggling with Postpartum Mood & Anxiety Disorders.

If that means I have a slow day at the blog or I don’t blog at all, I’m okay with that. Direct Messages on Twitter, text messages, or phone calls that help a Mom figure out her next step or help a Dad feel a little less scared are worth far more than any comments, retweets, favorites, or likes.

Hang on, folks. I’m still on my Social Media rampage.

It was brought to my attention tonight that a certain blog tweeted a link to a piece about a certain aspect of Postpartum Depression. My friend responded to them, saying she’d been there and articles like theirs wrecked her when she was in the midst of things. Their response?

“It would be best to leave your comment in the appropriate place. 140 characters isn’t good. Here you go —> (link redacted)”

Woman who hosts a weekly chat about Postpartum Depression twice every Monday says WHAAAAAA?!?!?!
It gets better…yes, yes it does. She responded to that tweet, and they then said (hold on…)

“It would help if you would discuss it – not on twitter w/ 140 characters. It really is that serious. Have a good night.”

Original Photo "Wise Owl" by Isolino @ flickr.com http://www.flickr.com/photos/isolino/6288990750/sizes/l/in/photostream/

Original Photo “Wise Owl” by Isolino @ flickr.com http://www.flickr.com/photos/isolino/6288990750/sizes/l/in/photostream/

Wise Owl says WHOOOOOO do you think you are?!?!

So… Postpartum Depression is far too serious to discuss on Twitter. But…

Every Monday I discuss it. For an hour. At 1pm and then again at 830pm ET. In 140 characters or less at a time. Most of my 100k tweets are thanks to tweets about Postpartum Depression, actually.

And during the entire week, women and families discuss Postpartum Depression on Twitter. In LESS than 140 characters. Postpartum Depression is not too important to discuss on Twitter. If anything, it’s far too important to NOT discuss on Twitter.

Comments are nice.

Page views are nice.

SEO helps you get both.

But if you put something out on a platform in addition to where the actual post is located? Be prepared to discuss it on that platform. If you’re not prepared to discuss it then you shouldn’t share it. Anywhere. You also shouldn’t sensationalize things which don’t need to be sensationalized. Don’t use a term just to garner more page views if you’re not going to be responsible with how you present said material.

Do no harm is a wonderful basic rule here. There have been several Postpartum related things I’ve chosen to not blog about simply because I know they would ultimately do more harm than good to my readers and the community I have fostered through #ppdchat. It’s not that I want to keep them in the dark, per-say, just that I know there are other sources they can get the information from should they choose. If, however, the information is incorrect or sensationalized, you better believe I’ll jump on it in a heartbeat to protect my community from being fed misinformation.

If you’re not ready to discuss it, there’s an easy solution for you. Don’t hit publish. If you do hit publish, there’s no reason at all to be rude to someone who initiates conversation with you because you’re putting it out on Social Media. Responding as this account did violates the guidelines of Social Media – being social. Own your site. Own the words at your site. You put them out there, you need to stand behind them boldly.

Also? If you’re not ready to discuss Postpartum Depression with a Mom who’s been through it and has legitimate concerns? Don’t hit publish either. It’s irresponsible and potentially harmful.