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Brooke Shields/PPD on Oprah - Page 5

post #81 of 102
I thought the interview was good....not well rounded enough for me...me it was good.
post #82 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by edgyveggie
But then I got a huge slice of humble pie when we adopted our dd. I had relactated and had all of these wonderful plans of nursing her forever. But she was 7 months old when she came home to us and she wanted nothing to do with my breasts. They scared her! We all scared her. And I didn't know what in the world I was going to do if I couldn;t nurse her. I also went through a ppd with her and thought it was nuts since I didn;t have post pregnancy hormones obviously. It was definately real though. And that on top of having to buy formula, mix bottles, smell that horrible smell of that stuff. I treated it like it was toxic waste- literally screaming if some got on my hands. And having to come to terms with then having to actually hold her and feed her this stuff. I never got used to it, but I definately had more compassion for ff'ing mothers after that. I had to do a lot of soul searching and forgiveness stuff for my past judgements on my fellow sisters. I'm not ever going to be a fan of formula, but now I see that mothers do what they can and feel is best for them and my judgement is absolutely unfair to spew onto them. I didn't do anything positive by passing my beliefs onto a mother who was just doing what was best for her and her babe. Now I mostly keep my mouth shut and reflect back on my own formula nightmares.
OMG you just described what I went through! Except we had a newborn. I owuld cry making the bottles, but when I finally gave up nursing him or trying to nurse him when he was 8 weeks old, I was relieved, tho still sick about formula feeding. I'm over it now. I am more compassionate, and I am glad for the experience.
post #83 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by edgyveggie
But then I got a huge slice of humble pie when we adopted our dd. I had relactated and had all of these wonderful plans of nursing her forever. But she was 7 months old when she came home to us and she wanted nothing to do with my breasts. They scared her! We all scared her. And I didn't know what in the world I was going to do if I couldn;t nurse her. .
I had a similar experience--and can really understand what you are saying. We adopted our daughter from China--and she came home to us when she was almost a year old. I knew I could not nurse her, because I had gone through a very early menopause (at 33) and my hormones were really messed up. Because of her nutritional standing, forumla was more appropriate for her than regular milk--so I had to teach myself how to use it after spending years nursing my other kids. I planned to co-sleep with her and sling her to help her adjust to us--but she was terrified every time I tried to bring her into the bed with us. She would scramble to get away from me anytime I tried to bring her to bed at night when she woke up crying. I found co-sleeping was totally out of the question, as well as slinging (which she hated even worse than co-sleeping despite my persistant tries to get her to accept it).

I found I could not use any of my previous AP tricks, and it freaked me out and depressed me. But we got through it, and she is an incredibly loving, cuddly, attached girl now.

Hugs,
Lisa
post #84 of 102
SPOILER ALERT---I am talking about some events in the book in detail here, so if you want to read it and don't want it spoiled, please skip this post....









I am now 3/4ths through this book. There seem to be a lot of misconceptions in this thread, so I will try to clear some issues up. So far where I am in the book she is still nursing. Brooke is incredibly dedicated to nursing and had wanted to nurse her whole life. She took breastfeeding classes pre-birth and saw lactation consultants. She has said over and over that breastfeeding was the one thread connecting her to her daughter, and she fought with people who tried to get her to stop nursing. Many people did try to get her to stop, because they saw it as a drain on her and she was already walking around depressed and hopeless. She is nursing while on medication right now in the book.

She was called after the baby was born for a commercial for the formula company. She wanted to go to the interview because it was something outside of the baby that she could do--and at that point she was so depressed around her baby. She felt frightened that she would never work again and that no one would want to hire her now. I think all of that was because of her poor self esteem at that point mixed with the depression. Anyway, she went to the interview and she embarrassed herself by crying in the interview in front of the owners of the formula company. They told her she could keep on nursing and just use the formula as a supplement--but she told them she was not sure. She felt guilty for giving her daughter the formula even as a supplement, and worried about it a great deal in the book.

I am all for exclusive breastfeeding (and did so for many years with my first two kids) so I am not making excuses for her--but just trying to clear up some misconceptions in this thread.

One thing that helped her a great deal was hiring a baby nurse. She was against that too--she had never had a housekeeper or maid and felt that people should do things themselves. None of her friends had used baby nurses (they were non-show business friends) and she felt she should not have to either. Friends kept telling her to hire one just for a week or so until she felt better--because they would come to see her and she was just a wreck. Her husband had to go out of town and she was scared to death to be alone with the baby. Her mom disapproved of her hiring a baby nurse too--and Brooke felt very guilty about it. She finally broke down and called an agency and got one sent over. It was a wonderful filipino woman who was a godsend to her. She helped her with nursing and made her healthy soups to drink to increase her milk supply. She made her teas to help her relax and made sure she got enough liquids so she could make more milk. She stayed in bed and the nurse would sit with her and the baby and they would talk and laugh. Sounded pretty great to me--I would have loved to have a non-family member to help me like that. She helped Brook to learn to bond with the baby and taught her a more natural way of caring for the baby and talking to the baby. She had her for one week and wept when the lady had to leave and Brooke had to move to their Los Angeles home the next day.

By this time the medicine seemed to be helping, but she could not tell for certain. She was still depressed, but getting better. She went L.A. and her husband hired a baby nurse for their first week there--but this baby nurse sucked! She was very "old fashioned" and did not connect well with their baby. She seemed surprised that Brooke wanted to hold the baby and nurse her--and it was like having a weird stranger in the house. The lady lived with them for the week and Brooke could not wait to have her out of the house.

After that she went off the medication and 3 days later became suicidal. She thought the medication was not helping her--but after she went off it became apparent she just did not realize how much it was helping her.

I will talk more after I have finished the book--I read fast so that will probably be by tomorrow. I would like to gift this book to anyone that needs it here in this forum. Let me know if you would like it.

Hugs,
Lisa
post #85 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by OnTheFence
OMG you just described what I went through! Except we had a newborn. I owuld cry making the bottles, but when I finally gave up nursing him or trying to nurse him when he was 8 weeks old, I was relieved, tho still sick about formula feeding. I'm over it now. I am more compassionate, and I am glad for the experience.
I can see how that would make you more compassionate.
Take care,
Lisa
post #86 of 102
Thanks Lisa for taking the time to write all that. I skimmed it, so I am not going to respond right now.... except to say... that Filipino woman is the exact kind of care a new mother should receive!!! At least she got a little of that. New mothers need to be nurtured and supported.

I would like to read about her experience. I'll add her title to the pile of books on birth/postpartum/motherhood I'd like to read someday.
post #87 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanibani
Thanks Lisa for taking the time to write all that. I skimmed it, so I am not going to respond right now.... except to say... that Filipino woman is the exact kind of care a new mother should receive!!! At least she got a little of that. New mothers need to be nurtured and supported.
I agree--the first baby nurse sounded awesome. Since she had never had this kind of hired help before--she felt very weird about considering it...but what a help it was to her at that time. I am sure it was very expensive and it is very sad that the ordinary woman would never be able to afford that kind of support.

Brooke was trying to get by by herself and then later with the help of her mom and in-laws, but said that hiring someone without that family connection (and baggage) was such a relief. I remember when I had my first child how hard it was having my mom and dad come to stay with me. I was so incredibly tired and felt like I was competing for my baby--they wanted to hold him all the time and there was just too much history there. I love my mom and dad, but seeing them when I was in pain and bleeding and had just given birth--I just did not have the energy for house guests and the energy they bring to the house. A few days later they left, and my MIL arrived. Once again, I love my MIL, but it was HORRIBLE having her as a house guest when I was just spent. She was not helpful really at all, and I found myself cooking for everyone and cleaning the bathrooms and begging to hold my baby. Having her as a houseguest these days is fine--but right after labor the mom needs to have some peace and quiet. The day after my MIL left my BIL called and wanted to come with his wife and small kids and I almost lost it with my husband. I still can't believe he even considered it (I made him call him back and tell him "no, don't come") because he had to see how exhausted I was, but I think there is a lot of pressure to "show the baby off" to family.

This baby nurse that Brooke hired seemed to be the perfect kind of help that a new mom would need. She did not have to feel guilty for resting in bed because she was paying the woman to help her, and yet she was still very present with her baby.
post #88 of 102
I am surprised at the use of the term baby nurse. Don't we call them doulas? The first one sounded like a doula. The 2nd one was the old-fashioned baby nurse who would normally give it bottles and take care of it, leaving the other work up to the mom. Yuck.

A doula is what moms need. I wish everyone could have one. They make meals, do child care for older kids, go get groceries, do laundry, clean. Plus, they help with bfing support. For a middle class woman they are not that expensive. Even if you can't afford one every day, a couple days a week would be great, for say, the first month at least.

A good LLL grp (go to several mtgs while pg to build support system) can often serve this purpose, with friends coming over with meals. Friends of mine cleaned my house and did some laundry too. Plus, of course, I got all the bfing info and support I needed. LLL really keeps new moms from feeling this horrible isolation that our culture promotes so criminally.

I am sad that nobody Brooke knew was telling her to get hired help and disapproving when she did. And I wish she had her doula for longer than one week.

Sad that she was doing OK on her meds and bfing, then just went off it. When I was on Zoloft (depression, not PPD) I was also seeing a psycho-therapist who made quite a big deal about staying on it for a yr just to be on the safe side and I did.

It sounded like Shields was on the right track and then made some bad decisions because of lack of proper maternal support.
post #89 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaryLLL
It sounded like Shields was on the right track and then made some bad decisions because of lack of proper maternal support.
And that is what happens so very often.

And since the article stated (right?) that she signed the Formula ad contract before birth I wonder who contacted who.

Do you think her rep contacted them? Or do you think they contacted her? I'm guessing they contacted her. Perhaps they contact all celebrities with mainstream appeal (not many :LOL ) because that's what they do... they are trying to sell a product. And wouldn't it be great for them to have a well-known, well-liked, no skeletons in the closet celebrity selling ABM. I'm sure they SOLD her on it big time (you'd be helping thousands of women... our formula has X ingredients that others don't have, blah, blah, blah...) Who was consulting her on the politics of BFing??? Nobody I bet. With that scenario, as much as I disapprove of the ad, I'm not going to come down hard on it. She was ignorant. If... she knew of the politics and went ahead and did it anyway (which I doubt it very much!!!) then I'd be angry with her.

I wonder what the agency called the first woman. I'm guessing they called her a baby nurse. It was a benefit (and pure luck for BS) that she was from abroad. Women abroad focus on nurturing the mother. But DaryLLL is right, she was a doula and that's what new moms need.

But most first-time American mothers don't really know they need a Doula after birth. I think new moms typically have their mom over (thinking they'll be helpful - and often times they just want to hog the baby : and mom is stuck playing hostess ) and baby nurses are still marketed to them as a necessity. Ya know... you have to put that baby on a schedule from day one.
post #90 of 102
I really was grateful for Brooke being on Oprah. Many
of the issues she talked about completely mirrored my
own experience, and just hearing somebody use the
same words I would have used was a huge comfort to
me.
I wasn't thinking about her celebrity, if she hired help, if
she breast-fed or not. I was really focused on what she
was feeling, during and after her pregnancy.
It also opened a conversation between myself and my
family last night. We were having an early Mother's Day
dinner and my brother brought up the book, and if I had
heard that it came out. My Mother and Father were also
present. I shared past feelings that I hadn't shared before
with my family. They all knew I had "problems" that I
started serious therapy when my dd was one years old,
and that was the only thing I left the house for.
I felt a huge pressure, not to be perfect, but to be better
than I though people believed I could be as a Mother. I
was single, didn't have any experience with a baby, and
before her birth I had already been diagnosed with bipolar.
So it was really important to me in my mind that people see
that I was doing not just a fair job of motherhood on my own,
but that I shined at it. I have far let that go, but expressing
this to my family, especially the night before Mothers Day was
cleansing for me.

I applaud Brooke for sharing her story. Many women watched
that show and felt what I felt listening to her. Some maybe
already got help, and might feel better to hear somebody else
sharing their own story, like I did. Some might not have gotten
help, and now might feel that they can.

That is worth more to me than who she is, who she hires, and
how she fed herchild. We don't know how many people she
helped by coming out and being so open and honest. That's
something great in my book.
post #91 of 102
I read an excerpt from her book but did not see the Oprah show.

I'm just highly disappointed that our media and PPD's "spokespeople" constantly fail to mention that it's the interventions and artificial baby milk that can cause all these problems to begin with. Don't get me wrong - I had the homebirth of my dreams with my first and she never had one drop of formula, despite the fact that nursing hurt so bad I cried hysterically through EVERY SINGLE NURSING SESSION for the first three months - and I had severe PPD, probably because I was undiagnosed bipolar until a couple years later.

But... it is well documented that the intricate dance of hormones during an unmedicated birth and during lactation greatly decreases the chance of PPD, and decreases the longevity and severity in those women who DO experience it. It really, really gets me that I never hear mention of this, despite the fact that it is basic common sense. I mean, I got pregnant with my first at 19... and I knew more about pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding than people twice my age with twice as many kids! I just get so confused and incredibly discouraged when women refuse to learn even the basic biology of normal human birth and lactation. I think that knowing that alone would greatly decrease all of the intervention and ignorance that increases the likelihood of PPD.
post #92 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanibani
Do you think her rep contacted them? Or do you think they contacted her? I'm guessing they contacted her. Perhaps they contact all celebrities with mainstream appeal (snip)... they are trying to sell a product. And wouldn't it be great for them to have a well-known, well-liked, no skeletons in the closet celebrity selling ABM.
Yes, this same formula company tried, and failed, to get Kelly Ripa and Sarah Jessica Parker to sell baby formula. That's just my opinion/hunch...I believe that they turned BB down, rather than the other way round like they imply. Nice try spinning it though.

From an old thread at bf advocacy from when these Brooke commercials started....

"Shields to Pitch Infant Formula" article
Mon Jul 7, 2003
(This article originally in Adweek magazine on adweek.com.
It required registering to read it.)

Quote:
New mom Brooke Shields...who started her endorsement career at 11 months as the Ivory Snow baby, has signed on as spokesperson for Bright Beginnings, a new line of baby formula from PBM Products.

...also considered celebrity moms such as Sarah Jessica Parker and Kelly Ripa, but chose Shields, 38, because she has an "image that is thoughtful and intelligent" and appeals to younger moms, as well as older moms who "have grown up with Brooke..."
post #93 of 102
yesterday at Barnes and Noble I picked up her book, opened it and I could not put it down! Now I'm going to have to read it.. very interesting.
post #94 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by candiland
I read an excerpt from her book but did not see the Oprah show.

I'm just highly disappointed that our media and PPD's "spokespeople" constantly fail to mention that it's the interventions and artificial baby milk that can cause all these problems to begin with.
I see your point--breastfeeding does have a big part in the hormonal aspect of PPD....but it did not come into play in Brooke's case. She was breastfeeding and not supplementing at all when she was in the worst of her depression (within the first 6 months). That is why she probably did not mention it--it did not apply to her situation. They did not really have any other "experts" or spokespeople on the the show that day. She mentioned breastfeeding a great deal (as she does in her book) in the light that she was committed to it even though she was extremely depressed. It was a connection to her baby that she would not give up.
post #95 of 102
About her daughter's feelings...I hope not, but her dd may herself have ppd one day. I had it, my mother had it, and I can't be sure but I suspect my maternal grandmother suffered from depression as well. So getting the truth out there within her family could be helpful.
post #96 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by LisainCalifornia
I see your point--breastfeeding does have a big part in the hormonal aspect of PPD....but it did not come into play in Brooke's case. She was breastfeeding and not supplementing at all when she was in the worst of her depression (within the first 6 months). That is why she probably did not mention it--it did not apply to her situation.
Formula may not have been involved, but the emergency C-section could have made a difference, at least in the severity. As far as bfing preventing PPD, I don't think that's common knowledge at this point, even among so-called experts.
post #97 of 102
I don't really think it is fair to say that bf'ing can prevent PPD. I have been nursing for over a year now and, had a very natural homebirth-nothing tramatic at all-and am suffering from PPD pretty bad.

I know that bf'ing can play a role in warding off PPD, but it alone will not prevent it.
post #98 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanibani
I didn't have PPD, but it was love at first sight with my 2 babies (one hospital birth, another home birth) either. Anybody else?
I'm a number of pages late, but I wanted to say that I personally had a natural birth gone horribly wrong, ended in a c-section, milk came in late so I had to supplement with formula until it did, and I had PPD, but I fell completely and totally in love with my son the moment I saw his tiny hand sticking up while they were reviving him on the warming table.

I mean, I was totally in love with him before that, but at that moment I literally felt my heart ache.

I feel very lucky for this...my PPD manifested in severe anxiety and the inability to leave the bedroom where we were ensconced to do anything - eat, answer the phone, bathe, you name it. My son was perfectly well cared for, but I was a wreck--sleep deprived and not eating, etc. I lost all my baby weight in two weeks.

Looking back I called it the "Post Partum Depression Weight Loss Program."
post #99 of 102
On the term baby nurse--

that is what Shields called it in the book excerpt I read. I agree that the term is old-fashioned and implies more of a rigid, put-the-baby-on-a-schedule type. And perhaps the most approrpriate current terms would be post-partum doula. But not everybody is familiar with this new term and I think some people still use baby nurse to describe any kind of person you hire to be in your home and help you care for the baby.

I've read two different things in this thread about the formula ads: that she signed to do them before the birth and that she was approached by the company afterward. The former situation gives me a less favorable impression of Shields (though I don't think it makes her evil or anything), but if she was approached afterward by the company and from the description sounds like she was cajoled into doing it (being told, "You can still breastfeed, just supplement with our formula" blehh) at a vulnerable point, I feel a lot more ire toward that formula company than anyone. That's so slimy.
post #100 of 102
There was some discussion a while back of sleep deprivation's effect on depression; I just wanted to point out that different individuals can have very different sleep needs. By the age of 22 I had come to realize that I need more sleep than some people and that I'm a sensitive sleeper. I had friends in college who could fall over and sleep in the back of a car and get by fine on 6-7 hours sleep, but I need a minimum of 8 hours and preferably 9. If I get less, I'm anywhere from cranky to downright mean, and get sick easily. All this is something I just accepted...until I had a baby. Then I was thrown into the whole "just sleep when your baby sleeps" advice thing and trust me, it didn't work, especially when at age one my daughter began only napping if I drove her around in the car the entire time. Ugh. (Thank god gas wasn't $2.40 a gallon at that time!) I tried to be creative about getting enough sleep, but to no avail. Being woken up many times per night (until I nightweaned at 19 months, after that it was only 2-3 times till age 3) well that felt like torture. I never, ever, once was able to just sleep through nursing my daughter as some lucky moms can. I tried to mostly grin and bear it...after all I was the one who wanted a baby...but by 18 months I was extremely depressed. There were other factors, but I think sleep deprivation was one of the 2 key reasons for my depression.

I'm trying to conceive again -- I have no idea what I'll do differently this time but I know from experience I have to find a way to get more unbroken sleep. I guess I'm just praying to the "easy baby" gods that my next baby doesn't fight sleep and wake as often!

Carol
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