Postpartum Anger & Mom RageJun 07, 2021
I just had a baby, and I am ANGRY all the time… what?! No one told me about this!
Postpartum Rage can be a scary symptom to experience. You can feel disconnected from yourself and wonder what is happen, spiraling out of control. Postpartum rage is often an overlooked symptom of postpartum depression or anxiety. Postpartum can be anger directed towards yourself, your partner or family, and your child (yes even your child or children). It can be a slow burning anger that doesn’t necessarily explode but you have frequent feelings of being unhappy and frustrated. For others, it can be a more explosive anger, where one little thing leads to an outburst of emotion. Unfortunately, what can also come up quite frequently with rage or anger are feelings of shame and guilt surrounding these feelings.
While it’s not easy, often this anger is a time to reach out for help. That can be help through your personal support network through your family or partner. Sometimes it can be help on a bit bigger scale, through your family physician, ob-gyn, or a trained mental health professional. It is important to know that you don’t have to suffer alone or “wait for it to pass”. Getting help sooner rather than later, if possible, is important. Know you aren’t alone and there is nothing to feel ashamed of.
But… I am out of the postpartum period and I am still angry!
We often look at angry as a warning sign, a warning sign that there is an unmet need and warning sign of burnout. Hello, 2020/2021 living in a pandemic and burning the candle at both ends. Anger, frustration, explosion of emotions, often happen in burnout because of exhaustion, feeling unsupported/unheard, or not validated by those around you. It can arise from feeling desperate for wanting a break and not knowing how or when to take one.
Our advice to you, start small! If it can be one thing a day- like brushing your teeth, changing your clothes, or having a warm cup of coffee. It won’t solve everything, but it can help you feel like you’re doing one thing a day for you. As it gets more comfortable, you have more time, add a couple more things and continue to build up. Another important strategy is to set realistic expectations for the day. Having 500 things on your to- do list, may be the norm, but it also may not be realistic for you to complete in the day. Reframing and setting realistic goals or expectations for ourselves in a day can aid in decreasing the pressure and feeling unsuccessful if you don’t complete it.
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