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17 Celebrities Who Have Spoken Up About Their Postnatal Depression

"I seemed to be suffering emotional amnesia. I couldn't genuinely cry, or laugh, or be moved by anything."

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1. Hayden Panettiere spoke to Yahoo about people who suggest postnatal depression isn't a "real" disease:

"If you think for one second that a mother wants to feel that way toward her child, you're outta your mind. It is one of the most debilitating, scary, guilty feelings that you can ever feel. That a mother would not be able to connect with their child, would not be able to get a grip, or would not know what's going on, for anybody to say that it's false or created by us, you must have your head examined."

2. Reality TV star Kendra Wilkinson has spoken about her battle with postnatal depression:

"After giving birth, I never brushed my hair, my teeth, or took a shower. I looked in the mirror one day and was really depressed. I thought: Look at me, I had this glamorous life in LA, and now didn't. A couple of times I even said, 'I just have nothing to live for.'"

3. Gwyneth Paltrow has shared how she didn't feel like a doting mother after the birth of her son, Moses, in 2006:

"At my lowest, I was a robot. I just didn't feel anything. I had no maternal feelings for him – it was awful. I couldn't connect, and still, when I look at pictures of him at 3 months old, I don't remember that time." She added: "My problem was that I never acknowledged anything was wrong. I didn't put two and two together."

4. Courtney Cox has described her experience with a delayed case of postnatal depression after the birth of her daughter, Coco:

"I went through a really hard time — not right after the baby, but when [Coco] turned 6 months. I couldn't sleep. My heart was racing. And I got really depressed."

5. Natasha Hamilton from Atomic Kitten has opened up about her struggle with postnatal depression in two of her pregnancies:

"You're exhausted and your emotions are everywhere. Prenatal depression is just like extra stress on your shoulders." She added: "It all came back to me having this fear of not being able to work and not being able to provide for my children. But now I know I need to work it out or just let go. Inside I feel much more relaxed."

6. Bryce Dallas Howard, who starred in Jurassic World and Twilight, wrote about her experiences with postnatal depression for Goop.

"It is strange for me to recall what I was like at that time. I seemed to be suffering emotional amnesia. I couldn't genuinely cry, or laugh, or be moved by anything. For the sake of those around me, including my son, I pretended, but when I began showering again in the second week, I let loose in the privacy of the bathroom, water flowing over me as I heaved uncontrollable sobs."

7. Drew Barrymore spoke to People about what she went through during her second birth:

"I didn't have postpartum the first time so I didn't understand it because I was like, 'I feel great!' The second time, I was like, 'Oh, whoa, I see what people talk about now. I understand.' It's a different type of overwhelming with the second. I really got under the cloud."

8. Celine Dion has talked about the struggles she faced after giving birth to her twin sons:

"Some of the first days after I came home, I was a little outside myself. One moment, tremendous happiness; the next, fatigue sets in, and I cried for no reason." She added: "Some of the first days after I came home, I was a little outside myself. I had no appetite and that bothered me. My mother remarked that she noticed I had moments of lifelessness but reassured me that this was entirely normal. It's for things like that after having a baby that mothers really need emotional support."

9. Former The X Factor contestant and British reality television star Stacey Solomon has opened up about postnatal depression and stigma:

"I felt really trapped, like I'm going to be terrible, I'm not going to be able to do this, I can't live up to what the responsibility is."

10. Alanis Morissette has shared details of both the physical and emotional pain of her postnatal depression:

"The degree and intensity of my post-natal depression shocked me. I am predisposed to depression, but what surprised me this time was the physical pain. I hadn't realised the depths to which you can ache – limbs, back, torso, head, everything hurt – and it went on for 15 months. I felt as if I was covered in tar and everything took 50 times more effort than normal. I wished I could have cried but there was no relief during that time; my version of depression is almost below crying where there is just despondency... I had various therapies and now I feel all light and springy. Thankfully, it didn't interfere with the bond with my son, although I think that has strengthened since I got better."

11. British TV presenter Andrea McClean wrote about her postnatal depression for The Mirror:

"As one of life's 'copers', it was hard to admit I was struggling. I tried to pull myself together, but it was desperately hard to do.I went to work every day, held down two demanding jobs – GMTV and Loose Women – and didn't let anything ruffle me. I made sure the house ran smoothly and the two children were happy. But quietly, on my own, I felt I was cracking up. Sometimes it would happen without warning. I'd pop to the loo in the middle of a meeting and suddenly find myself overwhelmed with sadness, tears pouring down my face and my hand stifling the sobs. After a few minutes I'd wipe my face with a tissue, then walk back into the meeting, smile in place and ready for work."

12. Brooke Shields has spoken about how she learned to come to terms with her disease:

"I learned what was going on inside my body and what was going on inside my brain. I learned I wasn't doing anything wrong to feel that way. That it was actually out of my control. If I had been diagnosed with any other disease, I would have run to get help. I would have worn it like a badge. I didn't at first – but finally I did fight. I survived."

13. Elle Macpherson has discussed getting the help she needed:

"I took the steps I needed to take in order to recover. The truth was, I just did what I needed to do and addressed a lot of issues that needed addressing and had a well-earned break, which I really needed as well."

14. Valerie Plame Wilson, a former United States CIA operations officer, told NPR that her postpartum depression tested her in ways espionage never did:

"What I do remember — and a lot of it is a blur — is I just wanted to go away, which made no sense, logically, because I had married the love of my life. I had two beautiful babies. We had supportive families and, you know, it didn't make any sense. Why was I feeling this way? Empty. And I had very little emotional response. It was all dulled."

15. Lena Heady, aka Game of Thrones' Cersei Lannister, revealed that she has suffered bouts of clinical depression ever since she was a teenager. She required medication after becoming depressed again following the birth of her son:

"I had postnatal depression, which I didn't realise for a long time. I went a bit nuts and eventually went to a guy who mixes Western and Eastern philosophy in terms of medicine and he put me on a course of something that changed everything."

16. Carnie Wilson, an American singer best known as a member of Wilson Philips, spoke about her struggles following the birth of her first child:

"I cried all day over everything. It's a physical feeling. I don't know how to describe it. You're overwhelmed with love and joy, then sadness and fear. You're so afraid you're going to fail this baby. What if you drop her or hurt her? She's totally dependent on you and it's scary."

17. Actor Amanda Peet has shared her experiences with postnatal depression after giving birth to her daughter Frankie:

"And after I gave birth I had a fairly serious postpartum depression. I think it was because I had a really euphoric pregnancy."

For more information on postnatal depression and how to get help, please visit Mind's dedicated support page.

You can call the Association for Post Natal Illness between 10.00am and 2.00pm on: 0207 386 086.

If you are outside of the UK, you can contact Postpartum Support International here.

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