She knew that her mother had died when she was little. A talk with her sister revealed the exact reason she died.

Aabha Gopan

Rachel Pan Resnekov always knew her mother passed away when she was just two. As a little girl, everyone would shut down the topic whenever she asked anything about her mother. So Rachel wasn’t inquisitive to know about her mother, and naturally, she didn’t even know her mother’s full name.

Being an Asian, Rachel was taught not to question elders and always listen to them. So she didn’t push for answers regarding her mother after she grew up.

But in her 20s, Rachel turned to her elder sister, who was more open and welcoming for answers. One day, she learned the exact reason for her mother’s death, and it was something she never expected.

Her mother had taken her life two months after Rachel was born because of post-natal depression. As she thought more about it, she started fretting whether she was the cause of her mother’s death.

“I felt really upset that I thought it was me because if she didn’t give birth to me, then it wouldn’t have happened,” she recalled. But then, she realized that not talking about one’s mental health or its acceptance in her Asian household was the actual culprit.

At 35, Rachel fell pregnant with her daughter, and as time passed, she grew scared. She wondered whether she would follow in her mother’s footsteps. Luckily, she spoke about her concerns with her husband and elder sister, who stood by her throughout the pregnancy.

Now, Rachel, her nine-month-old daughter, and her husband are a happy little family because they spoke openly about mental health and embraced its significance.

According to Postpartum Depression, some studies have shown that one in seven mothers in the USA experience postpartum depression, and around 50% aren’t diagnosed. Scarily, 20% of them don’t recover fully and tend to live with it.

Based on another study, Psychiatric Times revealed that suicide rates during pregnancy and after delivery have tripled in the country between 2006 and 2017.

“Suicide deaths are a leading cause of maternal mortality in the US. It is a public health crisis that has silently grown worse,” Lindsay Admon, MD, MSc, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Michigan Medicine Von Voigtlander Women’s Hospital, said to the media.

What can you do?

If you know a woman showing symptoms of postpartum depression like mood swings, anxiety, sadness, irritability, feeling overwhelmed, crying, reduced concentration, appetite problems, trouble sleeping, etc., convince her and her family to seek a professional’s help. Understand that she could cause harm to herself and try to keep company. If you can, lend a hand in managing the baby and try to make their life easier.

Have you experienced postpartum depression? If yes, let us know your thoughts below. Also, share this article with others to inform them about postpartum depression.

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