Postpartum Depression In Truman Capote's In Cold Blood

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When A Miracle Becomes A Tragedy

Birth is commonly called the “miracle of life”, and while it is, it can come with negative life-changing side effects for both the mother and child. Postpartum Depression is the depression, anxiety, etc. that could happen post-birth. It is caused by a drop in hormones, including progesterone and estrogen. Postpartum depression is not a confined to a set amount of time; this is one of the many misconceptions about this type of depression. Like many forms of the disease, it can last long after a mother gives birth. One example of a woman who was affected for decades is Bonnie Clutter from In Cold Blood, a nonfiction work by author Truman Capote. After the birth of her first child, Bonnie suffered from postpartum …show more content…

A lot of people commonly consider it the end to a pregnancy, but for some women it is just the beginning of something extremely dreadful. According to the Encyclopedia of Human Development, “postpartum depression is depression in mothers that occurs following the birth of their child” (1010). It is most common for mothers to develop it immediately following the birth, but it can be developed a few months after the birth of the child (Salkind, 1010). Either way, it can hit extremely hard and the excitement of having a child is ripped from the mind of the mother, only to be replaced by dark thoughts, depression, anxiety, etc. The length of postpartum depression varies though, based on which type you have and the severity of it. The postpartum blues is a “mild and transient mood disturbance” that begins during the first week following childbirth, and “lasts between a few hours and a few days”, while postpartum psychosis “characterizes women who exhibit psychotic symptoms following childbirth such as confused thinking, delusions, hallucinations, and disorganized behavior” (Salkind, 1012). Because postpartum depression has the potential to last for a very long time, it may bring other side effects along with it. Along with the typical effects such as depression, anxiety, feeling like an inadequate mother, etc., long term postpartum depression could lead to serious issues such as psychiatric issues like hallucinations and suicide (Harris, …show more content…

Lisa had written the article I Survived Postpartum Depression, But It Never Left Me, discussing her first hand experience with postpartum depression, how it still affects her years later, and the importance of understanding that it may not leave. After her son’s birth, instead of joy, she felt something she had never felt before. For almost two years after her son was born, Romeo had the horrible feeling that she was living to survive and nothing more (Romeo). Lisa says, “ I was supposedly no longer fighting off postpartum depression that matters. What came next—what, even now that my sons are 21 and 17, persists—are days and nights and long worrisome moments of everyday life” (Romeo). These feelings can clearly last even beyond babies’ childhoods have passed. Even after her therapist had told her she was fine, she knew that she was simply not the same as she had been. She was in quicksand and could not seem to get out; she felt like she was going in circles. She is not alone; “An estimated 30-50 percent of moms affected with the disorder continue to struggle with major depression throughout the first year after birth - and beyond (Pearson).” Another point that Lisa Romeo introduces is that “lingering effects from postpartum depression...according to experts, are rarely recorded, and usually vanish entirely in three years’ time (Romeo). This is obviously not what had or

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