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Old 09-28-2008, 07:54 AM   #1
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chellet HB User
how does depression affect parenting?

i have been trying for days to find some kind of information on how depression affects parenting skills and how depression of a parent can affect children reaching their milestones can anyone please help

 
Old 09-28-2008, 01:23 PM   #2
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Re: how does depression affect parenting?

I have 2 kids and it is so difficult. I have no energy and can not do as much with them as I want to. My DH has to help me out a lot and my Mom. You need to get others involved to help you out. Depression is a sickness. I just started Paxil and am even more tired but my mood seems a little better.

Whatever energy I do have goes on my children and I leave my needs behind.

 
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Old 09-28-2008, 08:58 PM   #3
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Re: how does depression affect parenting?

It's impossible to generalize. I would hate to see someone make an important decision about their life, or judge someone else, based on what could be a very temporary condition. Parenting skills, like any other skills, can be learned and improved upon. The job constantly changes as the child grows, so lifelong learning is a must.

There are millions of people with some type of depression and they are all different. Most can be successfully treated. With most of them you wouldn't even know. There are many forms of depression from very mild situational depression to very severe forms of clinical depression. It's really unfortunate that we all use that single term, when there are really many variations. If you find a study that makes a claim about depression, you need to read carefully to see how they define it.

Depression is just one characteristic of a person. Like any other illness or imperfection, the trick is to find ways to accommodate it. No parent is perfect, so it's helpful for all children to have more than one adult in their lives. Adults who can pick up the slack for one another and provide what the children need. Some kids react better to one type of personality at one time in their lives, but they need something else later.

A bout of depression is a character shaping experience. It gives a person a source of empathy and humility that can make them much more understanding of the feelings of other people. People who have never experienced fear or sadness, will be less able to comfort a child who is feeling that way.

On the other hand, a person caught up in a deep depression might be less expressive and engaging, and might want to be left alone. They might be less warm and less optimistic. To put it in perspective, many parents have times when they are preoccupied with an illness, a job, a hobby or chores, and are therefore less attentive than their children need.

 
Old 09-30-2008, 12:07 PM   #4
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Re: how does depression affect parenting?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lucylucy View Post
A bout of depression is a character shaping experience. It gives a person a source of empathy and humility that can make them much more understanding of the feelings of other people. People who have never experienced fear or sadness, will be less able to comfort a child who is feeling that way.

On the other hand, a person caught up in a deep depression might be less expressive and engaging, and might want to be left alone. They might be less warm and less optimistic. To put it in perspective, many parents have times when they are preoccupied with an illness, a job, a hobby or chores, and are therefore less attentive than their children need.
That comment just about moved me to tears! I had PPD with my first child and do not remember the first 6 months of her life! After getting the help and medication I needed, I made sure to seek out and help other new moms with this not feel so alone!

I agree with this whole heartedly also! I have been suffering for the last 10 months with a serious enough bout of depression (didnt notice). I lost my grandmother to cancer over a year ago, and she and my mother raised me. I was the closest grandchild and I would go every lunch hour to see her and take care of her.. When she was too ill to be home, I went to see her at the hospital (1 hr one way) every single day! She passed away in my arms, as I had made the call to turn off the machines. I also had the priveledge to do the eulogy. I have been suffering multiple symptoms since then including hair loss, and I never attributed it to depression. I saw my GP yesterday and she prescribed me on a third anti-depressant! This has been a trying time for my family and I. My husband has had to «pick up the slack» like you said and my children have had less of a mommy.. We spoke to them on how when ppl are sick we make them soup and help them feel better...and that mommy is sick too but instead of soup, she needs helping hands and warm hearts! My children are 7 and 3 and LOVE me in or out of a depression! This will make my children compassionate and understanding children! We decided as parents to use our experience to teach them life lessons that they cannot get out of a textbook.

So how does depression affect parenting...?? In our home.. It makes for compassionate, loving, caring, affectionate children.
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Last edited by Les3elles; 09-30-2008 at 12:10 PM.

 
Old 10-02-2008, 07:39 PM   #5
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Re: how does depression affect parenting?

Thanks so much for those beautiful words LucyLucy. I was really moved and so thankful for such a positive perspective. I too had PPD and still struggle even though my daughter is now 18 months old. I like to think that she hasn't suffered as a result of my illness and pray that she will grow up to be a happy and healthy little girl.

I'd be concerned that any study results you find on depression affecting children's milestones will relate to very severe depression and will not take into account things like help from your spouse, family and friends. Just as everyone's illness is very individual, so are the results and impact this has on those around them.

Chellet, if you are concerned about depression affecting parenting skills and milestones then I'm sure that you're doing all you can to be the best parent you can be. Your children will love you and respect you for that.

 
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