Postpartum Depression in Men, Pt. II: Don't Just 'Deal With It'
There are different ways to treat this very real problem.
“There’s a lot of societal implications with dads. It’s the ‘suck it up buttercup. You’re tougher than this. It’s nothing big. It’s just a phase. You’ll deal with it,” said Alex Gonzalez.
“Acting tough” is one of the many reasons dads don’t seek mental health therapy.
“Unless it’s reasonably justified like PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder) from trauma serving overseas or dealing with [a] super, massively life-altering event — well, having a child is a massive life-altering event.”
Alex believes fathers need to challenge the stigma around asking for help and start prioritizing their own mental health.
“As a dad, I went through it. It’s not something I want anyone else to go through. But, the truth is, we do and we should talk about it. This isn’t something that’s going away.”
One way to treat Postpartum Depression is through medication.
“With the golden age of medication that we find ourselves in now, you could easily just pop a pill, move on with your life, talk to a psychiatrist or even your primary care physician, get prescribed an antidepressant, and try to move on.”
But, doing that alone may not solve the problem.
“The pill doesn’t solve the root issue. It’s not going to give you the skills … the pill is not supposed to be a fix. It’s supposed to help you get stable enough to learn skills in order to then carry you through the rest of your life.”
Alex says the idea of using medication alone to manage your symptoms is a mindset we need to challenge.
“You’re only putting things in. You’re not getting what’s in your head and in your heart out and that can eat at you later. The combination of the two is where you’ll see the most benefit. I would certainly recommend … trying to talk to somebody about it because that will be the most effective thing in the long term.”