Memoirs and Personal Stories

Behne, B. (2011). Belly, Baby & Mother Blues: A Candid Journey Through Postpartum Depression. New York: Legwork Team Pub.

In this memoir, Brandy Behne thoughtfully discusses her experiences with pregnancy and postpartum depression. Behne is honest about the most painful details of her troubling thoughts, symptoms that are normal but often stigmatized. Parents having trouble accepting and talking about postpartum depression will be reassured by this candid story. Behne drew on her religious faith to get through her depression; inclusion of scripture may make this book more or less accessible depending on the audience.

 

Poulin, S. (2006). The mother-to-mother postpartum depression support book: Real stories from women who lived through it and recovered. New York: Berkley Publishing Group.

Author Sandra Poulin suffered from postpartum depression. In this book, she shares her experience and a collection of stories from other mothers. Experiences include sleep deprivation, anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, anger toward partner or baby, traumatic childbirth, multiple births, single mothers, hospitalization, and psychosis. This collection is meant to reassure mothers that they are not alone, it is not their fault, and there are effective treatments available.

 

Shields, B. (2006). Down came the rain: My journey through postpartum depression. New York: Hyperion Books.

After struggling for years with infertility treatments, actress Brooke Shields finally achieved a healthy pregnancy. However, she developed severe postpartum depression after a traumatic delivery. Though the writing is not extraordinary, Shields’ story will resonate for parents dealing with postpartum depression, and her experiences with talk therapy and medication may be helpful.

 

Westall, C., & Liamputtong, P. (2011). Motherhood and postnatal depression: Narratives of women and their partners. Dordrecht: Springer Verlag.

Carolyn Westall, PhD, is a parenting consultant for Peace of Mind Parenting Support. Pranee Liamputtong, PhD, holds a Personal Chair in Public Health at the School of Public Health, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. This book is based on a study of 33 women with postnatal depression and 18 partners, and examines the support these parents received before and after giving birth. Though not exactly a memoir, this book includes narrative interviews which may prove reassuring to parents. In addition, women were asked to draw pictures of their experiences, which add a rich layer of insight.

Additional Recommended Books

Clinical Point of View includes evidence-based research, case studies, and implications for patient care. These books are geared more toward providers and professionals but may be useful for patients seeking care.

Self-Help and Treatment Guides are geared toward both parents and providers and professionals, and include guides to diagnosis, locating practitioners, and various treatments. These may be especially helpful for patients, providers, and professionals to create treatment plans together.