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Men get post-natal depression too!

May 27, 2010

courtesy of BBC news

Interesting article on the BBC last week about men also suffering from post-natal depression. It’s well known that PND affects women, but apparently as many as 1 in 10 new fathers get it too – though you wouldn’t really know it as there hasn’t been much coverage up to now.

Things generally seem to be getting better for new dads; far more of them are choosing to be house-husbands and they’re starting to get paternity leave. In fact many leading psychiatrists still continue to dismiss the possibility of fathers developing PND

Obviously having not experienced this myself (being female for a start) I’m just speculating, but I can understand why men are feeling the strain. You’ve got the obvious changes: sleepless nights, routine adjustment, generally having to put your needs as second (or third, or fourth…) to the new bundle of joy. Then there’s no more Match of the Day without being interrupted by a screaming baby monitor or a nappy change and bargaining over who will get the Friday night out. He’ll also feel like he’s competing with the new arrival for his wife’s attention – who’s going to feed and cuddle him now? And suddenly, he’s also the sole bread-winner with an extra mouth to feed. A male friend told me that he would find this last point really difficult to adjust to, especially in this credit crunch climate; an overwhelming feeling of responsibility doesn’t help with the sleepless nights.

Maybe I’m painting a picture too similar to that of a jealous toddler (this one I can relate to!) but either way, I don’t think men are given enough credit for the adjustment they have to make. What do you think? Have you, your partner, or anyone you know ever experienced PND. Please do share your thoughts; we’d love to hear from you.

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