Coping with Depression While Being an Effective Parent

No lie.  When I wrote the post on Norton’s suspected autism last week, I had hit rock bottom.  I was sobbing.  I was overwhelmed.  It felt like everything around me was falling apart.  The simple fact of the matter is that I was coping with depression… and I was coping very badly.Coping with Depression While Being an Effective ParentI’ve been to my doctor.  While getting Norton referred to a pediatrician, I also had my migraine cocktail adjusted.  Effexor, one of the components of my migraine cocktail, is also an antidepressant.  Since having my migraine cocktail adjusted, my headaches are reduced again and I’m doing a better job of coping with the stress.

I know that I was struggling.  Between the information overload, the seeking answers on my own, and the behavior, everything seemed hopeless.  Having people on the internet tell me that I’m a horrible person, blah blah blah, was just icing on the cake.  Fortunately, most of the telling me how horrible I am included suggesting that I somehow don’t love my child… and since I know that is nonsense, it made it easier to ignore all of the dog piling.  I’m not going to pretend that everything is just perfect, Norton’s behavioral concerns are magically all better, and the dogs are no longer acting out.  It’s not.  But the difference is that I’m better able to handle it now.

Coping with an exceptionally difficult child is not easy.  Coping with an exceptionally difficult child while poorly coping with depression is even harder.

The good news is that I knew that it was time for some outside help, and getting it has helped me be more effective at managing the storms that are coming up.  Instead of finding myself paralyzed by dwelling on the worst case scenario, I’m able to focus on our successes.

Have you ever found yourself coping with depression while trying to be a good parent?  How did you handle it?

Image by David Costello Dominici, Free Digital


About Suzi

Suzi is an American ex-pat living in British Columbia. She's a cloth diaper addict, wife, mom of three, and President of the Prince George chapter of Cloth for a Cause.


  1. I hear you, Mama! For me it’s coping with anxiety disorder. Today I brought my son to his great auntie’s for the day so I can have a wee rest! (Aka: do the stuff that’s tricky to do with a toddler around) It’s okay to ask for help, and it makes us good parents knowing we can’t go it alone. Thinking of you!
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  2. Stephanie says:

    I wanted to say that you ARE NOT a horrible person! Anyone who blasts you for voicing your concern and despair over the possibility of your son having autism has either never dealt with their child being diagnosed or is deluding themselves about their feelings concerning the diagnosis. I’ve never met anyone who has been through such things that didn’t feel a sense of loss and despair. We want the best for our children and knowing that their lives will be filled with more obstacles than most is a hard pill to shallow. You will get through this and I don’t doubt you will get your son the help he may need. I applaud you for seeking help for yourself as well. It takes a strong person to recognize that they need help and an even stronger one to seek it! You go girl.

  3. Don’t listen to the people who told you that your are a horrible person. I think you are a great mom for sharing your real feelings about your son’s condition. I remember going through the same thing when I found out that my oldest was deaf when she was a baby. It is hard. Grieving is a natural response to getting bad news. Hang in there.
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  4. You were honest and open with your feelings nothing to be ashamed of and honestly- it is refreshing in a blogger. I find I come back to the blogs that are more real and honest then the “la la la everything is perfect and there are unicorns and rainbows” type blogs. Hang in there it will be ok.

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