I remember the disappointment when after 16 hrs of laboring, I wasn’t progressing with my son. C-section it would have to be. Okay. As long as he’s healthy, that’s all that matters. After what seemed to be a routine surgery, as soon as my husband was about to bring our son around to show me his little face, my body had a reaction to the Pitocin and anesthesia combination and I began getting sick while trapped down and numb. So much so that I was unable to turn to see my newborn son’s face for the first 24 hrs. Getting up after essentially becoming the lady sawed in half is harder than you think, despite the copious amounts of drugs being pumped into your IV. When I did finally shuffle slowly towards the NICU and saw him, so small and helpless and covered in monitors, there was an unfathomable feeling. Nothing. I felt a total disconnect and has no idea why. It took me months to come to terms with having a traumatic birth. Through breastfeeding challenges, a baby that would not sleep (thus Mom and Dad that didn’t sleep either) I was losing it. While I did get into the swing of things, I had other very close friends who were telling me that they were experiencing Post Partum Depression. “Baby Blues” are what I was going through. I wasn’t crying every day or having horrible thoughts. I was getting better. PPD is not something we talk about because of its stigma. That is not ok.
When The Bough Breaks is a feature length documentary about postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis. Narrated and Executive Produced by Brooke Shields, this shocking film uncovers this very public health issue which affects one in five new mothers after childbirth.
The film follows Lindsay Gerszt, a mother who has been suffering from PPD for six years. Lindsay agrees to let the cameras document her and give us an in-depth look at her path to recovery. We meet women who have committed infanticide and families who have lost loved ones to suicide.
Babies are dying, women aren’t speaking out and the signs are being missed. When The Bough Breaks takes us on a journey to find answers and break the silence. This film also features stories from singer Carnie Wilson, actress Tanya Newbould, celebrity chef Aarti Sequeira and Peggy Tanous of The Real Housewives of Orange County.
Lindsay Gerszt‘s story is not as uncommon as one might think. PPD is not something we talk about enough. This doc does an exceptional job of mixing intimate sit down interviews and actual science behind this mental illness. There are some interviews with mothers who never got the help they needed. As a mom, it is very difficult to hear and to watch. To be honest, I had to step away for a moment because I started to cry. But, it’s important not to ignore. This is truly valuable information. Treatments, from every kind, are discussed. Groups and reach out programs highlighted. It’s a treasure trove of knowledge in about 1 hour and 30 minutes. The film’s impact will stay with me always and I will now become an advocate for this issue, as it doesn’t just affect the mother and child, but everyone connected to them. If someone you know seems like they are struggling, you need to reach out. Most women will not admit how bad things really. Offer help, check in, be a good friend. When The Bough Breaks is available today on iTunes.
Available on iTunes March 14th
WRITTEN, DIRECTED AND PRODUCED BY:
Lindsay Gerszt and Tanya Newbould
Singer Carnie Wilson
“The Next Food Network Star” chef Aarti Sequeira
“Real Housewives Of Orange County” star Peggy Tanous
RT: 93 Minutes