Some of you may have read and been hugely upset and worried by the recent piece published in the New York Times' Well Blog. There is no doubt that if you are a mom and have read that article, that you are concerned, angry, and confused by the content of that piece.
The very significant problem is that the author, who is not trained in perinatal mental health, was misleading and biased in her reporting and did not share the very significant and numerous studies that show the relative safety of SSRI medications during pregnancy. Please read this educated and well-written response by Postpartum Support International. It is extremely imperative that the world understands the very real and destructive symptoms included in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders like PPD. Women need to be appropriately educated on the safety of the medicines used to treat these illnesses and no mom should feel guilty for taking a medicine that will help her to be well enough to care for herself and her children.
Those of us who are appropriately educated in these issues continue to strive to understand the role of medicine and the potential risks to moms. Not one of us would be advising moms who suffer from significant PMAD symptoms to take a medicine that was, through sound clinical research, a significant and relative threat to babies. And babies deserve to have mamas who are well. PMADs are real and serious issues that need to be treated as such. Please be kind to yourselves.