Pregnancy & Birth

Alanis Morissette reveals her ongoing battle with post-natal depression

“There are days I’m debilitated to the point where I can barely move.”

By Ellie McDonald

Post-natal depression is a condition that certainly doesn't discriminate. In fact, as many as 1 in 7 mothers and 1 in 10 fathers in Australia have joined celebrities like Alanis Morissette in their own struggle with the often-misdiagnosed illness.

In an exclusive interview with PEOPLE magazine, the 43-year-old mother-of-two opened up about the condition that first struck her six-and-a-half years ago when she gave birth to her first child, Ever Imre. Now, Alanis has revealed she has been diagnosed with post-natal depression once again - this time, with her son, Onyx Solace, who was born in July last year.

“There are days I’m debilitated to the point where I can barely move,” the Jagged Little Pill singer explains.

“There are people who are like, ‘Where’s the old Alanis?’ and I just think, ‘Well, she’s in here. She’s having a minute'."

“I just know that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and try not to beat myself up.”

"My main priority is that I want to make sure both of my children are loved and bonded with and provided for.”

However, Alanis isn't the only celebrity to open up about post-natal depression in a bid to raise awareness around it...

Sarah Michelle Gellar with her daughter, Charlotte

Eight years ago, Sarah Michelle Gellar gave birth to her now-seven-year-old daughter, Charlotte, who she says she loves “more than anything in the world”.

However, according to a very candid new Instagram post, the former Buffy actress has shone a spotlight on what it’s like to live with post-natal depression after the birth of a child you’ve been longing to meet.

“Having kids is wonderful, and life-changing, and rarely what you're prepared for,” she writes.

“I love my children more than anything in the world. But like a lot of women, I too struggled with post-partum depression after my first baby was born.”

“I got help, and made it through, and every day since has been the best gift I could ever have asked for.”

“To those of you going through this, know that you're not alone and that it really does get better.”

Gwyneth Paltrow, with her son, Moses

“After Moses was born I had post-partum depression," Gwyneth Paltrow explains.

"It was a difficult time, and because of that I believe I have an extra empathy for him, and he for me.”

Chrissy Teigen, with her daughter, Luna

“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," Chrissy Teigen writes.

"I started keeping robes and comfy clothes in the pantry so I wouldn’t have to go upstairs when John [Legend] went to work. There was a lot of spontaneous crying.”

“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. I also don’t want to pretend like I know everything about postpartum depression, because it can be different for everybody. But one thing I do know is that—for me—just merely being open about it helps. This has become my open letter.”

“As I’m writing this, in February, I am a much different human than I was even just in December. I’m over a month into taking my antidepressant, and I just got the name of a therapist who I am planning to start seeing. Let’s be honest though—I probably needed therapy way before Luna!”

Courteney Cox, with her daughter, Coco

"I went through a really hard time – not right after the baby, but when Coco turned 6 months," Courteney Cox reveals.

"I couldn't sleep. My heart was racing. And I got really depressed. I went to the doctor and found out my hormones had been pummelled."

Hayden Panettiere, with her daughter, Kaya

"It's something a lot of women experience," says Hayden Panettiere.

"When you're told about postpartum depression you think it's 'I feel negative feelings towards my child, I want to injure or hurt my child – I've never, ever had those feelings. Some women do. But you don't realise how broad of a spectrum you can really experience that on.”

“It's something that needs to be talked about. Women need to know that they're not alone, and that it does heal."

Hayden, with her daughter Kaya, says that more women need to talk about post-natal depression if they want to "heal".
Hayden, with her daughter Kaya, says that more women need to talk about post-natal depression if they want to "heal".

Celine Dion, with her twin boys, Eddy and Nelson

“Some of the first days after I came home, I was a little outside myself. I had no appetite and that bothered me. My mother remarked that she noticed I had moments of lifelessness, but reassured me that this was entirely normal," says Celine Dion.

“One moment, tremendous happiness; the next, fatigue sets in, and I cried for no reason, and then that took care of itself. It’s for things like that after having a baby that mothers really need emotional support.”

If you, or someone you know, is going through post-natal depression, or would like to learn more about it, contact Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia (PANDA) on 1300 726 306 or visit their website: www.panda.org.au.

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