A mum has opened up about suffering from postpartum depression, revealing that she didn’t feel her son was hers for three years.
There’s still a shame around not feeling happy and grateful all the time after having a baby.
Taking to Facebook, blogger and mum-of-three Bunmi Laditan shared her experience of feeling exactly like that, when she suffered with postpartum depression.
Writing in the candid post, she explains: ‘I had it bad with my third born. My last baby, my first son.’
‘We all know about the anxiety, OCD, chilling thoughts, rage that sneaks up on you like a flash fire and then is drowned by your own shame-filled tears and all that fun stuff yay but what no one can prepare you for is how it feels to hold a baby and not feel like she’s yours.’
The mum goes on to explain how she felt that ‘magical insta-conection’ with her first two children. Describing it as the ‘mama-bear-I will-kill-a-mofo-who-touches-this-stroller-primal-let-me-drink-in-your-euphoric-scent-Jacob-imprints-on-Renesmee-you-are-in-my-bones-realness’.
‘But when I came home with my little cub, while he was cute as a button, I knew something was missing.
‘He didn’t feel like mine. I felt like I was taking care of someone else’s child.’
She wrote about how she would sit up in the dark of the night nursing her son, but there was something missing, adding that her ‘greatest fear was that someone would notice’.
When Bunmi was finally prescribed medication to treat her postpartum depression, her mood stabilised – but the connection didn’t magically appear.
Instead, it took three years before Bunmi felt like her son was truly hers.
‘It took three solid years,’ Bunmi wrote. ‘In that time, I loved my baby boy, took him to play centres, parks, we cuddled… But there was a valley between us that I prayed he didn’t feel.’
Eventually however, things clicked into place and Bunmi finally felt like her son was her son, and she was his mum.
By writing this post, the mum hopes that she’ll be able to reassure other mums that it’s totally normal but one day, things will make sense.