It's been 10 months since she gave birth to daughter Kaya, and actress Hayden Panettiere is coming out with some serious news. She's taken the spotlight - not for her role in Nashville, but for her real-life struggle with postpartum depression (PPD).
Unlike some celebrities, who would quietly go into hiding, posting cute, captioned Instagram photos, reps for Panettiere have released a statement announcing that she has voluntarily checked herself into a treatment centre for PPD.
"I can very much relate," said 26-year-old Panettiere in a previous interview about her character on Nashville. "It's something a lot of women experience. When [you are told] about postpartum depression, you think it's 'I feel negative feelings towards my child; I want to injure or hurt my child.' I've never, ever had those feelings. Some women do."
"But you don't realize how broad of a spectrum you can really experience that on. It's something that needs to be talked about. Women need to know that they're not alone, and that it does heal."
Panettiere went one further, to dispel some myths that PPD is simply caused by hormones. The depression is real, not something that's just "in her head." And anyone who's been through it knows you can't just shake off those feelings and simply enjoy your baby, as much as you'd like to.
For some reason, depression is hard to reconcile with this beautiful little bundle you've been given. Life is the truly greatest gift, and depression doesn't negate that fact.
Suffering from depression doesn't mean you harbour ill feelings toward your baby. It doesn't mean you regret having a child or that you don't or can't love your baby. It doesn't mean you are a 'refrigerator mom' whose infant will be damaged goods as a result of your mental health issues.
What it does mean is that you need extra care and understanding to get back to yourself. And you will get back to yourself, in time, and become the mother you want to be.
But the first step is to stop pretending everything is fine.
Thanks to Panettiere for making it that bit easier for other moms to admit they need help.
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