Postpartum Depression Treatments: Group & Phone Support

– At one point, I
realized that I can’t stay in this denial for much longer. I have to work on that,
so I knew I have to do it. – I came to Pacific Post
Partum through, actually, a friend of mine. She emailed me the link to the Post Partum Support Society here. I read through the website
and I thought, “Oh yeah, “this might be something.” – We do a variety of
things, but, probably, the biggest thing that we
do is the phone support. A lot of people think
of us as support groups, but, although we do have seven groups across the Lower Mainland, we are also doing the phone support. – We field about 4,000 calls a year. Many throughout the Lower Mainland and throughout Canada. We take calls from all parts of Canada, the US. – I remember when I called there. I remembered sitting around the telephone and walking up and down
and I was so nervous. I thought, “What if they
don’t take me serious? “I was worried that they
wouldn’t take the time to listen “and wouldn’t take me serious. “I called there and it was just
the opposite of everything, and I went, “They were so nice. “We talked for almost an hour.” – The phone support is great
because people don’t actually have to leave their home
to talk to somebody. Some people do find it really
hard to get out to a group. I could remember finding
it really hard just to pack up everything that
you need to pack up with a baby and get out, so we do have women that
never come to our groups, they just use the phone line,
call in and we talk to them, you know, sometimes somebody calls in here a few times a week. For some people, they’ve
called once and that has made a huge difference. We find out later that that one call made a huge difference, so,
yeah, the phone support, I think, is really, really valuable. – I got connected with the Pacific Post Partum Support Society. There wasn’t room in the
support groups at the time, but I started getting the weekly phone calls, which were just amazing, just that somebody would
care enough to phone me. Even if I said one week,
“I’m doing fine,” they said, “We’re still gonna call you next week “because one week you’ll be doing fine, “and the next week, you
won’t be doing fine.” Just for somebody to recognize
that it can be like that, like, it really impressed
me and it made me feel safe. – A woman answered the phone and I asked for the purple book. I said, “Can you please
send me the purple book?” She wouldn’t let me go
with just that request, but that’s what I wanted to do. I wanted to just kind of
slip in, under the radar, get the purple book, get out, I was good, and she wouldn’t let me go,
we just started chatting. That opened the door for me
to speak about my experience, and have my feelings
around what was going on, let me know that I was not alone, and this was all very
normal, what was happening. It was incredible, that first contact. It was incredible because
she just was there with me. There was no other agenda. She was not going anywhere. I had the sense that she would
be there for a long time. – I love being a facilitator. I feel so honored to
hear the mum’s stories. When I see a mum come into my group, the reward I get is to kind of
walk that path with the mom, and to see her get better
and leave the group is just such a rewarding part of my job. – A group is the greatest place
for learning to take place, you know, especially going
into a PPD group where everybody is actually
feeling similar symptoms, and knowing that you’re not alone and that there is help out there. – Coming to this group
was to have a safe place to talk about what was
going on inside of me, not feeling ashamed
that I would be judged, because, at first, at the
beginning, I was judging myself, then you’re always worried
that people outside will judge you for not being able to cope with the situation. Being here, hearing other mom’s stories made it easier for me
because then I realized I’m not the only one. – When I went to the group, I
was just surrounded by mothers who were going through the
exact same thing as I was. Here I was, at home, before, thinking that I was
the only one struggling and the only one questioning
what I was doing, and, instead, there
was a room full of mums who lived right in my area,
who felt the exact same way. They had the same anger,
the same frustration, the same stresses. Some of us had different things going on, or different reasons why,
but we could all relate. Just being able to talk to them, and share our experiences was amazing. – I’m having one of my best years ever. I really feel like I’m hitting my stride, personally, professionally. I’m just having a lot of fun. – Saying truths about yourself in a supportive environment is, probably, next to, I don’t know, enlightenment or something. It’s unbelievably healing because you get to be
real, you get to be honest, you get to be real, and you
get to be supported in that. No judgement.

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