13 answers

Feeling Sad / Slightly Depressed After Birth of 2Nd Child

I had my second child 4 weeks ago. I already have a 23 month old. I'm feeling really sad (don't have post partum) these days and want to know other Moms' experiences. I am also feeling like my husband and I are not connecting at all and don't know if it is just part of the package or if others have felt the same way...

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I didn't get help until my daughter was more than 2 yrs old. I didn't have post partum depression either but I was depressed, anxious and even went through counseling with my husband because we were just growing apart. I told my OBGYN about this and she referred me to a psychiatrist. Best thing I ever did for myself and my family. I recommend at least getting a consultation.

Take care.

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Congrats on your baby. What your feeling is normal. Trying to add a new set of daily chores to your life is never easy. Even the part about you and hubby not being on the same page. My husbands attitude was 'if you're home all day why is the house a mess. you should've been cleaning during nap time' or 'i can't be the one to get up in the night, i have a job to go to you're the one on maternity leave'... it was alway a no win situation.

Some tips to help.
- keep taking your vitamins. They will help give you needed nutrients for healing and energy.
- take a shower daily, whether its at 2 am or 8pm. I have taken many middle of the night showers. I would even set my alarm for 30m before hubby's so that I could get a quick shower in before he left for the day.
- get dressed into clean clothes everyday. Once you feel presentable, you have options... going to the store, shopping, just staying home and having a friend over.
- pick your battles. if there is a time when baby is sleeping but the toddler is a wake, use that for one on one time with the toddler or light housework. if the baby and the toddler are sleeping, use that for grabbing a shower or a nap yourself. Do not feel selfish for putting the basics before the housework or hubby.
- know that you are not alone, and you are not the first to feel overwhelmed. Set a time for hubby to be in charge. They are his kids too, and he should help you have an hour of down time while he bonds with his kids.


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From my experience, the birth of a second child, can have you feeling overwhelmed, and tired. When your body gets so tired, the sad feelings can feel magnified. My kids are 7 yrs apart, and after my 2nd child was born, I was so exhausted and delirious for about 3 months. I had to call in help from neighbors and family so that I could get things done, and get some naps in. I was breastfeeding exclusively, which is particularly hard. My hats off to you, with a 23 month old, and a new born, you really do have your hands full. I think my best advice is to recruit as much help as possible, set a schedule, and also to try and find time for just you. I know its really hard to just have some mommy alone time, but that really helps, and might help you to feel better. The feeling of being overwhelmed can really trigger sad feelings, I felt especially inadequate after my 2nd son was born, I thought to myself that I used to be supermom, I can do everything by myself, and had everything under control. Its really really hard to ask for help when you have that idea in your head, but for me, it was either ask for help, or lose my mind.
As far as your husband is concerned, after the 2nd baby is born, finding time for just the two of you becomes almost non-existant. One of the kids needs you or both of you around the clock, and sleeping schedules are crazy, so alone time just doesn't fit. However, if you are able to schedule a date night either once a week or once every two weeks, even if its just for an hour or two, this will help a lot. My husband felt very much left out after my 2nd son was born. Having a standing date night really helped.
Once you get into your groove, and when the kids get a little older, it does get easier, and not so hectic.
Best of luck, and this is a great community of mommies that are here to help!

1 mom found this helpful

That's how I was and it continually got worse, or maybe I just stayed in the same rut emotionally for awhile. Anyways, I got my thyroid checked and was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. I was also diagnosed with a vitamin D deficiency. Now I take two little pills a day and my world is completely different! It was like I was disconnected and living in a fog, and now I have bad days when I'm sick or have a cold that aren't great, but other than that every day is MUCH MUCH better than it was before. Both tests require bloodwork, but you can start buying vitamin D pills at many places that aren't prescription strength. Also, check your diet. There are foods that help your thyroid, even if you don't have a thyroid problem that will also really affect your approach to the day. I remember just feeling so disconnected all the time. There are a lot of things I've done, steps I've taken and things I've changed about my life as far as what I eat, why I eat, how I spend my time, etc that have made a big difference. Please feel free to email me (____@____.com) if you'd like to know more about what I did or if you just want to talk to someone who has been there.

Depression is really normal.....try talking to your OB/GYN about it. Also - counseling could help as well.
I wanted to touch on the marriage part though. I am about your same age and have two step children with my first biological child on the way....it is VERY hard to connect with husband with kids taking all the attention (not to mention your sadness). There are several reasons why this happens - lack of time, money, parenting issues dividing you, jealousy, etc...I had to deal with a no 'honeymoon stage' marriage because I walked into a ready-made family...so we had a lot of issues in the beginning. It was not what I had expected...but for you, it must be even more of a challenge since you DID have time alone with your husband and now you are stepping into a family with 2 children, different roles, and you must notice the difference even more. You really have to make an effort and 'schedule' time together...it will feel like you two are growing apart...having kids is very stressful!! It can drive a wedge into any marriage....but the strong will survive, with a little patience and creativity. Just know you are not alone and especially after the kids grow a bit more and require less time, it will be easier to get into a routine and grow into a stable, mature relationship with dear hubby. :) It may not be the same as before, but you two are parents now and experiencing that together can be very exciting in and of itself. Just try to enjoy the kids while they are young - time goes by quickly...and get a babysitter for an evening alone with DH. Hang in there and keep in touch if you need to talk!

Hang in there!!! It is so early after the birth, it takes time to feel balanced again. I am also recovering from the birth, my second is 3 months now (my first is 2 years older), and I have to say that it took me about 2/3rd of that to feel more balanced emotionally. It has been also difficult for me and my husband to reconnect - we are still working at it. But there is so much to adjust, and with a 23 month old in tow, it is normal that it takes longer this time, you are not having a minute for yourself!!! If you can affort it, get some help or send your first to daycare or kindergarten, even if it is only half the day. He will be more
Hang in there girl, things will get better.

Hi K.L. We're due with our second child in the spring, and I'm anticipating the blues. The mix of feeling out of shape with a postpartum body, having less sleep and more work with two, and feeling down if you've decided that this is your last baby may all add to it. If it has only been a month since giving birth, your body may still be recovering, so any physical issues can definitely affect your mood. Your husband is also still adjusting to the lack of sleep, getting back to work, etc. There's also the post holiday blues some of us feel that might be part of it right now. So my advice is that it should get better with time. If you have family or a reliable sitter, see if you can use them and get out for a break every once in a while. Nap whenever the kids will let you. Look into meditation, a spiritual podcast, yoga classes or anything else that might help you rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit. Take care.

ah, post partums... if giving birth in the bathroom doesnt
drive you to distraction dealing with the hormone hell
afterward could.. now, what kind of herbals are you taking
because that could be affecting your mood,and yes i gave birth to my baby in the bathroom. look up the potential
side effects of any thing and everything that you are injesting because your answer may lie there, grasshopper.
K. h.

it's probably not post partum, but having a blegh period after childbirth is pretty common, and it seems to my (unscientific) observation that it happens more after kid #2. i had huge disconnect from the DH, work and friends after my second, and wasn't as smart as you in recognizing it and working to overcome it so it took quite a while. a newborn and a toddler is a LOT of work, so be gentle with yourself. seriously let the housework go if they both sleep at the same time, and catch up on your own rest. that's the single biggest thing that most young mothers do to deprive themselves, and exhaustion wreaks havoc. rest first and foremost, and pamper yourself a little when you have the chance, whether it's going to a movie (or for a glass of wine) with girlfriends or locking the bathroom door while you have a bubble bath with a good book or a scented candle. have a date night with your husband at least once a month, even if you don't feel like it. and know that many many others are going through or have gone through what you are, you are not alone.

Have your levels of Vitamin D checked. I was low and once I supplemented it made a huge difference in both level of energy and depression.
Good luck.

You state you "don't have post partum", but you might. I hope you don't say this because you are afraid of the stigma. I hope you are stating this because you've already talked to your OB/GYN about your feelings and he/she has ruled this out. I too felt sad, and cried a lot, but didn't feel "depressed". When this mood didn't pass after about 6 weeks, I talked to my doc because I didn't want to be one of those women who was so scared of the label that I did nothing. I mean, really, why be miserable if it is PPD? It's very real and can be treated. I talked to my OB and he said that yes, I was experiencing PPD and I went on meds. I made sure they were safe to take while nursing and they were, and after a few weeks, I was still tired (I had twins) and a little frustrated since these were my first kids, but I didn't feel so sad and I stopped crying all the time. I wasn't drugged up and in 'la-la' land, I just felt in proper control of my emotions.

It does take a bit to get back on track with the hubby. You are both now under more stress and you're tired and you still have the older baby to take care of, so you two have your focus on getting things under control with the babies and for the short term, you are putting your relationship on hold. This is neither good nor bad but a reality. BUT, I would suggest you have a chat with the hubby to make sure he realizes that this is just a temporary situation and that you recognized the distance and hope that he does too. Basically, you want to keep your communication open even if the rest of your marital relationship is a bit on hold.

If you haven't been to your doc about your feelings, please do so. I was pregnant in 2002 and in that time, 2 women made headlines for killing their kids as a result of untreated PPD. I'm not saying your in that category but let's face it, it's a chemical/biological thing that is happening it's not something you've chosen. You're hormones are out of whack due to the pregnancy and it does take a while to get things straightened out, normalized again. Being tired and stressed only makes the situation worse and last longer. Just talk to the doc and see what happens.

Good luck, and Congrats on the beautiful babies you now have!!


It is perfectly normal to feel a bit sad after having a baby , known as baby blues. Your hormones are all over the place , your still getting used to having more than 1 child to look after plus your other child is not yet 2 so too young to understand properly how busy you are and that you can't give him the 1 on 1 attention that he has been used to. All you can do it accept help when it is offered , try and rest when you can (when baby is asleep and other child is napping or playing quietly). Don't worry about cleaning the house at the moment , a bit of dust here and there will be fine. You will soon get into a routine but at the moment you need to concentrate on getting used to the extra person to look after.

Good luck


I didn't get help until my daughter was more than 2 yrs old. I didn't have post partum depression either but I was depressed, anxious and even went through counseling with my husband because we were just growing apart. I told my OBGYN about this and she referred me to a psychiatrist. Best thing I ever did for myself and my family. I recommend at least getting a consultation.

Take care.

Let's see. You most likely are sleep deprived. You have an energetic toddler to chase around. Your body is still getting over being pregnant and revving up for milk production. Your whole family dynamic has changed, and no doubt Daddy is feeling acutely his role as provider for his family (it's a great role, but it has it's stresses) and he's probably short on sleep, too. When I was pregnant, I SO LOVED being the Pregnant Princess, and as soon as my baby was born, the attention went ZIP right over to the baby, which was fine, but I really missed being the Pregnant Princess a lot. It's the dead of winter and it's hard to just go out side and feel the sunshine on your face even for 10 minutes. So when you say you are sad, you might just be really S.A.D (Seasonal Affected Disorder) a little bit from lack of day light. I wouldn't rule out postpartum depression just yet. And I'd say it's a rare Mom who doesn't feel exactly as you do right now at least some of the time. Grab any sleep you can whenever you can get it. If anyone offers to help - LET THEM. Even if all they do is bring over a casserole for supper, it's one less thing for you to worry about. Don't try to do everything - attempting to be Super Mom is a sure way to exhaustion. Do you have a stroller that will carry both the kids? Try to get in an early morning mall walk before the stores open to work in a little exercise - it can be very refreshing. You'll get through this!

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