Blackish addresses Postpartum Depression in Season 4

One of the things we believe in at PPDKenya is awareness and advocacy for Postpartum depression and maternal Mental Health. So, when a popular TV Show, no less on ABC, does that, anyone in the maternal mental health heaves a sigh – or relief, of excitement and certainly, of the hope that this ushers in a new era where TV shows will not be afraid to tackle mental health and highlight the numerous intricate complexities thereof ” class=”wp-more-tag mce-wp-more” alt=”” title=”Read more…” data-mce-resize=”false” data-mce-placeholder=”1″ />

(PS: We are late to the party because this particular episode aired in late 2017, but it is never too late to talk about PPD, now is it?  )

The TV show in question is Blackish, a family sitcom that brings to light the challenges of a modern black family living in a predominantly white neighbourhood. In S04E02 that highlights PPD, Rainbow Johnson, who is fondly referred to as Bow (and played by the phenomenal Tracee Ellis Ross), is seen to be a tad bit anxious. Having just given birth to her fifth child, she fusses a lot over the heat in her house. We also get to see her caught up in an emptiness of sorts, staring at the baby monitor and wondering if her new born son is still breathing (something that many moms who have gone through PPD can attest to – a perpetual fear of death seems to hang over).

There are a couple of instances where Bow is also seen sobbing endlessly, seemingly over nothing. This is another symptom that characterises PPD. Most affected moms are weepy and irritable, even when they cannot point out exactly why. Another instance that stood out is when, staring into the empty space, Bow pours over tea into a glass. This remarkable change in behaviour, from the usually boisterous Bow, to a weepy mom is picked up by her mother-in-law, Ruby Johnson (played by Jenifer Lewis). According to Ruby, however, ‘This is what new motherhood looks like… She (Bow) is just weak.”

Again, the show brings to the front the stigma associated with PPD where struggling moms are deemed to be weak, or seeking for attention. Dre, Rainbow’s husband (played by Anthony Anderson) realizes that Bow has postpartum depression, but at first, she is denial saying, “I don’t have postpartum. I am a doctor and I would know.” In the end however, she admits she is struggling and is willing to get help.

In the end, this is an incredibly powerful show that steers conversation on PPD right where it matters. Not only does it show the challenges a family faces when mom is suffering from PPD, it also addresses the issue of medication in a sensitive manner that gives perspective. It is worth watching for anyone who has had/ is struggling with PPD, or for anyone interested in one of the most common perinatal mood disorders.

Catch the preview here on their fb page

 

 

PPDKenya support group therapy is now underway

Offering hope through PPDKenya support groups

The second weekend of January 2018 will probably remain the highlight of the year (so far) because it ushered in a new chapter for PPDKenya. We (finally) stepped away from the fear of the unknown, and into the heart of where our true passion lies – we held our very first support group therapy meeting! Words do not quite capture the excitement and sense of purpose we felt that day.

Read More: Why is a PPD support group important?

Of the seven who had confirmed, four showed up Continue Reading…

Why join a PPD support group?

A support group is an organization that brings together people who share or have gone through common disorders or life experiences such as postpartum depression (PPD), child loss, grief, addiction and anxiety among others. These people meet together to share their experiences and provide emotional support even as they go through their different challenges. As such, a PPD support group seeks to provide psychosocial and emotional support for moms struggling with this form of depression.

These groups are typically led by a mother who has gone through PPD and has made a recovery in what is known as offering peer support for affected moms Continue Reading…

Treatment options for Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression (PPD), as mentioned in the previous post, is one of the most common perinatal mood disorders globally, with at least 1 in every 7 mothers getting affected.

Read on the symptoms of Postpartum Depression

Looking out for these symptoms is an effective way to gain clarity into this condition for the simple reason that there is not a single specific test that diagnoses the presence of PPD. Consequently, for therapy to begin, health practitioners are tasked with collecting extensive information as pertains to an individual’s medical past, their health history as well as the circumstances surrounding their pregnancy; generally a background check into their life.

Once this is complete, Contine Reading…

Facts and Symptoms of Postpartum Depression (PPD)

Postpartum Depression is one of the most common perinatal mood disorders that affect women after child birth. According to Postpartum International (PSI), 1 in 7 women will suffer PPD in their lifetime. To bring this closer home, think about seven of your friends who are new moms. It is likely that 1 of the 7 will struggle with PPD. In Kenya, there are more than 1.5 Million births annually (Statistics from UNICEF). Assuming that most of these births are not multiple births, we can assume that as many as 200,000 women are predisposed to PPD in Kenya alone. These are sobering statistics, and it is this grim reality that spurred us to raise awareness, reduce stigma of PPD and provide psychosocial support for affected moms. With this in mind, what are some of the symptoms associated with PPD? In an attempt to reduce stigma of PPD, we have decided to add these symptoms without the medical jargon,and as simply as possible. Continue Reading…

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