Model and author Chrissy Teigen has opened up for the first time about her experiences with post-natal depression, after welcoming her daughter Luna last year.
In an essay for Glamour US, Chrissy admits that although her life with husband John Legend and baby Luna might have seemed perfect to her millions of followers on social media, in reality things were very different. ‘I had everything I needed to be happy,’ she writes, ‘And yet, for much of the last year, I felt unhappy. What basically everyone around me – but me – knew up until December was this: I have postpartum depression.’
Returning to her hosting duties on Lip Sync Battle after maternity leave, she experienced debilitating emotional and physical symptoms, writing that: ‘I was different than before. Getting out of bed to get to set on time was painful. My lower back throbbed; my shoulders – even my wrists – hurt. I would go two days without a bite of food, and you know how big of a deal food is for me.’
She goes on to explain how, outside of her and her husband’s work commitments, she would rarely leave the house. ‘Most days were spent on the exact same spot on the couch and rarely would I muster up the energy to make it upstairs for bed. John would sleep on the couch with me, sometimes four nights in a row,’ she tells Glamour.
At a doctor’s appointment before the Christmas holidays, Chrissy was diagnosed with post-natal depression and anxiety, ‘so exhausted but happy to know that we could finally get on the path of getting better.’
When it came to sharing the news with friends and family, the 31-year-old found that ‘it got easier and easier to say it aloud every time.’
She also notes that this condition is rarely discussed in public, despite impacting around 10 to 15 percent of new mothers. ‘Before this, I had never, ever – in my whole entire life – had one person say to me: “I have postpartum depression,’ she writes, before adding that her lifestyle – which, she admits, is a highly privileged one – made her question whether she could truly be suffering from post-natal depression. And despite being – by her own admission – a chronic over-sharer, it also made her more reticent to share her diagnosis with the public.
‘I also just didn’t think it could happen to me,’ she says. ‘I have a great life. I have all the help I could need: John, my mother (who lives with us), a nanny. But postpartum does not discriminate,’ she writes.
‘I’m speaking up now because I want people to know it can happen to anybody and I don’t want people who have it to feel embarrassed or to feel alone.’
Read Chrissy's essay in full at www.glamour.com