Monday, May 4, 2009

How I kicked postpartum depression's ass: part one

The ass kicking began with a fair amount of these 5 milligram beauties, otherwise known in our house as ABP's. (Click here to read why we call them ABP's, and to read my first post about postpartum depression). Technically speaking, I was taking Lexapro, but it's just so much more fun to say ABP's.

Postpartum depression looks different for everyone, and for me, it was irritability (my polite way of saying "bitchiness"). I didn't feel "depressed" - I was just pissed off as heck most of the time. I think my husband lived in constant fear of saying the wrong thing for fear that I would bite his head off.

I don't remember a lot of the things I said or did when I was the resident Ice Queen, but I'm sure it wasn't even safe for him to offer to do the dishes. The conversation probably would have gone something like this:

Dennis: Hey honey, do you want me to load the dishwasher?

Me: What do you MEAN "Do you want me to load the dishwasher?" Just what are you trying to say? You know I already think I suck at keeping this house clean. It doesn't help at all for you to rub it in my face!

Dennis: But, I wasn't...I was just -

Me: I don't CARE! You wouldn't have had to ask if I could just do my damn job and keep the dishes clean around here.

And then, before stomping off, I would probably slam a cabinet or door, or something near me that was slammable.

Poor guy...

I distinctly remember the day that I realized Dennis knew something was amiss with his once funny, bubbly, and pretty much care-free wife.

We went out for an afternoon together, just the two of us. We were getting ready to climb into the car when this old guy drives by us and gives us the ultimate stare down for reasons that I still can't figure out. He drives by, and as soon as he passes, I mutter under my breath, "What are you lookin' at, Country Club..."

Dennis uttered three words that made me stop in my tracks.

He said, "There's my Sera!"

Instantly, I realized that I couldn't remember the last time I cracked a joke.

It finally hit me that I didn't feel at all like myself. And I couldn't remember the last time that I did.


Kelly said...

My Best Friend is a drug rep and she pushes Lexapro! i tried to get my OB to put me on these but he said, and I quote, "you need a little more than that!" YIKES!

April said...

I think it is great that you are doing this. It really helps to know that you are not alone. I was the same way with PPD and was just pissed off all the time. The day that Benny said "OK, you are going to the Dr because something is REALLY wrong" was the day my oldest son askes me what we did for halloween and I yelled (not at him, but at Benny) NOT A DAMN THING BECAUSE BENNY WORKED LATE, and then I just started crying and couldn't stop. Lexapro became my best friend the next day.

thoughts and ramblings said...

So what did you think of Lexapro? I'm afraid to take it because I had read some unpleasant side effects. I've been on all kinds of other things that caused some awful side effects. I just don't want any more of the same! LOL

Great idea sharing your story. So many of us feel alone!


Sera said...

Hi Anne,

I loved Lexapro. The only thing I didn't love was the cost. I've got Blue Cross, Blue Shield, and it was still $80/month - right now there's no generic for it. There are lots of antidepressants out there that are much cheaper - some are even on the Wal-Mart $4/month generic Rx program, but this one worked wonders for me.

I had a good, long talk with my doctor about which one would be best for me. Some of the benefits she explained were that this was faster acting that some out there. She also said that it is known to have way less side effects, which was a huge reason I chose it. I can't remember which side effects she said some of the other meds were known for causing, but she said any side effects with Lexapro have been pretty minimal. I, personally, did not experience any side effects at all.

One thing to keep in mind is that some people experience "withdrawl" from it (as is the case with other depression meds) when weaning - they get headaches and sometimes feel dizzy. From what I understand, it's not as bad if you gradually wean, and in fact, it can be pretty bad to just stop cold turkey.

I stopped cold turkey only because I was on the smallest dose - 5 mg, and my doctor said that with an amount like that, weaning wasn't necessary (more on that later this week!).

All in all, I was immensely satisfied with it, and so was my husband! We both noticed a huge difference. After one week we could definitely see a change, and after 2 weeks I was feeling like me again. I've talked to several women who have taken Lexapro who have also tried other meds before, and so far, I haven't talked to anyone who didn't think it worked well.

For my husband and I, it was well worth the $80, and if I get this again the next time I have a baby, I'm not messing around with any of the others - I'll gladly fork out $80 again.

Have you talked to your doc specificially about Lexapro, and about what you've read/what your concerns are? Your doc may be able to shed some more light on it for you. But, every situation is different - different bodies react differently.

I hope you are able to find something that works for you. I'm so sorry that you've gone through some of the bad side effects. That would definitely make me hesitant to try anything else. How long have you been trying to find something that works?

Momma@Live. Laugh. Pull your hair out said...

My Happy Pills are my best friend!