Pregnancy and giving birth is a huge thing. Media representations of pregnancy are highly skewed. When the birth-giver is pregnant, they are shown as cranky, having wild cravings, and whatnot. Shortly after the birth, it is depicted how there is a happily ever after. But these depictions do not take into account what birth-givers face after having a baby in real life.

There are major changes, physically and emotionally. And some mothers face postpartum depression - a complex mix of physical, emotional, and behavioural changes that happen in some women after giving birth. These 14 celebs opened up about postpartum depression and showed how being a mother is not always a bed of roses.
Disclaimer: The following article contains distressing information, readers discretion advised.

1. Neha Dhupia
The actor has always spoken her mind fearlessly. After the birth of her second child, the actor opened up about how post-pregnancy has been for her.

The day you give birth it's such an amazing feeling and four days later when you come home, everyone congratulates you. And then half past 12 at night when the house is asleep and you're the only one awake with your child and still trying to go to work, and feeding him again in the silence of the night- it's a downward spiral. The first time around, I did go through postpartum depression that lasted 8 months. The second time around, I bounced back much faster because I knew what I was going through.

                    - Neha Dhupia told Filmfare

2. Sameera Reddy
The actor dons many hats. With two adorable children, the actor opened up about how she struggled with postpartum depression after the birth of her first child.

My vision of motherhood came from the glam world that I was from. But 9 months later, I weighed 105 kgs. And even as I held my gorgeous son, I didn’t feel happy; I slipped into postpartum depression.

                    - Sameera Reddy for Humans of Bombay

3. Esha Deol
In 2020, the actor opened up about how she felt when she had her second child. In one of her interviews, Esha said,

“When I had my first child, there was no postpartum depression...And right after (my second) delivery, I didn’t know what was going on. I was in a room filled with people and suddenly, I felt like crying. I sat quietly and very dull, low. And I have given birth to a beautiful baby girl again and it’s a very happy moment in my life and I didn’t know what’s going on.”

                    - Esha Deol

4. Mandira Bedi
The actor and former TV presenter was away from the limelight after the birth of her first child. She opened up about the blues she faced in an interview.

I went through postpartum depression. For one month after my son's birth, I didn't know what had hit me...One day I just burst into tears and told my husband that I couldn't cope with all this...But then, I had been reading a lot about it, and I knew that it was perfectly normal and a lot of women faced it before me. So, I kept telling myself that it will pass, and now thankfully, it is all behind me."

                    - Mandira Bedi told Times Of India

5. Soha Ali Khan
The actor often posts adorable moments with her daughter on Instagram. She kept it real when she spoke about the blues she faced as a new mother.

“A new mother goes through ups and downs, you get blues, you get depressed, you feel bad as everyone is going out to party and you’ve got to be at home. You can’t do certain things. I tried to remain balanced about it. But I’ve had breakdowns in the early weeks.”

                    - Soha Ali Khan told Filmfare

6. Shilpa Shetty Kundra
In 2010, when the actor had her first child, postpartum depression hit her like a trainwreck. In an interview, the actor said,

The first time around, you are breastfeeding and tired all the time...I also went through postpartum depression, though I bounced out of it in about two weeks.

                    - Shilpa Shetty Kundra told Mumbai Mirror

7. Kalki Koechlin
The actor authored a very detailed and illustrated memoir after her pregnancy, The Elephant In The Womb. The book talks about all the ups and downs of pregnancy. In an interview, Kalki said,

I suffered from postpartum depression. And it’s something that shouldn’t be labelled as extreme exhaustion...I felt that many times, so alone...I spoke to my therapist and gynaecologist, who helped me with certain coping mechanisms and medication...but just the mental load of going through this and not knowing if you are alone in it, is huge.

                    - Kalki Koechlin told Hindustan Times

8. Avantika Mohan
The popular blogger who always shares raw, unfiltered moments of her life with her audience on Instagram, also opened up about the post-pregnancy blues.

When I got pregnant, I started to suffer from depression again. That's what it felt like at the time. Unlike most to be mothers, I was not over the moon about the pregnancy; something ate at me. It sounds odd, but that's how it was at the time. It happens. It happened to me. And when I checked online, I saw it happened to a lot of other women as well.

                    - Avantika Mohan on her Instagram

9. Princess Diana
The late princess spoke about her tryst with postpartum depression way back in 1995. In an interview she said,

I was unwell with postnatal depression, which no one ever discusses. I received a great deal of treatment, but I knew in myself that actually what I needed was space and time to adapt to all the different roles that had come my way.

                    - Princess Diana told BBC

Diana with William and Harry
Source: USA Today

10. Adele
The singer gave birth to her son in 2012 but kept it under wraps for a year. In an interview, she revealed how she felt after she had her child.

Giving, giving, giving, to a baby or a toddler, when they can't even talk to you, your brain goes a bit mushy. You're not stimulated very much. In that, I also got really quite bad postpartum depression. I think it was just not the pressure, but what kind of parent do you wanna be? No one wants to be like their own parents, no matter how great parents they were or not. You learn how to be a parent on the go.

                    - Adele told The Face

11. Courteney Cox
Famous for her role as Monica in the iconic show Friends, the actor had a case of delayed postpartum depression. She revealed

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 pummeled.

                    - Courteney Cox told USA Today

12. Drew Barrymore
In a 2020 interview, the actor revealed how she struggled with postpartum depression after the birth of her second child.

I didn’t have postpartum the first time so I didn’t understand it because I was like, ‘I feel great!’ The second time, I was like, ‘Oh, whoa, I see what people talk about now. I understand. It’s a different type of overwhelming with the second. I really got under the cloud.”

                    - Drew Barrymore told People magazine

13. Chrissy Teigen
In a 2017 interview, the actor got emotional when she spoke about how postpartum felt for her. She had initially kept it private but then decided to speak up about it.

What basically everyone around me—but me—knew up until December was this: I have postpartum depression. How can I feel this way when everything is so great? I’ve had a hard time coming to terms with that, and I hesitated to even talk about this.

                    - Chrissy Teigen told Glamour

14. Cardi B
The rapper gave birth to her first child in 2018. She opened up about her experience in a 2019 interview.

I thought I was going to avoid it (postpartum depression). When I gave birth, the doctor told me about postpartum, and I was like, 'Well, I'm doing good right now, I don't think that's going to happen.' But out of nowhere, the world was heavy on my shoulders.

                    - Cardi B told Harper's Bazaar

Being a mother is not an easy job.

If you or someone you know are suffering from depression, suicidal thoughts, or just need someone to talk to, remember that help is just a phone call away. Reach out to the following helplines in India. BMC mental health helpline: 022-24131212 (available 24x7), Vandrevala Foundation: 186-02662345/180-02333330 (24x7) or AASRA: 91-9820466726 (available 24x7).