Information on the use of Medication While Pregnant or Breastfeeding

“The InfantRisk Center provides information on the use of medications for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Call us at (806)352-2519”

Home Page | InfantRisk Center

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

Private Support Group to discuss Parenting, Marriage, Pregnancy, Mental Health and/or Postpartum Mood Disorders…

Hey everyone! I have a support group, but not a lot of members yet. It started as postpartum mood disorders support group, but I have modified to also include privately discussing parenting, marriage, pregnancy and/or mental health. Here is the link if you or anyone you know would like to join…

(3) Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine Support Group | Facebook

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

Micromanaging and It’s Effect on Mental Health

I read an article the other day where a woman was seeking advice because she felt her husband did not do anything right when parenting their child. Here is a link if you want to read that first, which I strongly suggest:

https://slate.com/human-interest/2021/01/husband-is-incompetent-father-care-and-feeding.html

Twelve years ago I probably would have related more to her, but these days I related more to the advice columnist, who basically replied telling her she was micromanaging her husband and causing him to lose interest in parenting. Micromanaging your spouse can destroy a marriage and it can destroy that spouse’s relationship with their own child. I was not intentionally doing it of course. It was a symptom of my postpartum depression and my OCD becoming worse postpartum, but some people never overcome this and do it their entire life. I had a boss who micromanaged me and all my coworkers once, and it took a toll on our mental health and majorly affected our lives. It also changed a job I loved, and a company I was devoted to and would have retired with, to a company that disappointed me and broke my heart.

I was at a job I loved most days for years. I was my boss’s right hand man, I got raises and even thought about getting back into management again when my boss decided to leave and my daughter was older. Turns out my boss left, after over 20 years I might add, because she had a new boss who was micromanaging her. After she left, he replaced her with another micromanager, but did promote me and another person to assist them. I stayed for another year and a half. Most others have since either been fired, or eventually left like me. Even the ones who were star employees before were no longer good enough. The thing is though, we are all human and make mistakes daily. If any boss followed their best employee around all day and looked for mistakes, they will find them, as would their boss in them. Once this is done though, it can affect your confidence and of course make you nervous. The next thing you know, you go from making the every day common mistakes everyone makes sometimes because you are human, to making more and more and bigger mistakes because you are a nervous wreck. The micromanager then uses this against you to make you look like you were always this bad, the old boss just was not managing correctly.

Before we knew it, they had HR and upper management believing we were all the problem and not them. No one else would speak up with me, in fear of losing their job. This is how worthless we all felt by this point, that the company would get rid of an entire department, even people who had been great employees for years and would have retired with the company, before they got rid of this person. I on the other hand, could no longer take the toll on my mental health or take the injustice. I got another job, worked out a notice and left on good terms. A party was thrown for me, people gave me gifts and money and food. It felt crazy I was even leaving, or felt I had to. I told them everything I thought, as professionally as I could in an exit interview. I even told them I did not want the person fired, they were good at the other parts of their job, just not at supervising people. I also told them that one coworker I knew, who had never even had Anxiety or panic attacks before, had two caused by this boss, and I, as someone on medication for OCD and the Anxiety it causes, had no longer suffered attacks in a long time since being put on medication, but started having them again.

I loved this job before, and most of the people there loved me and had the same opinion of this boss as I did. I even reflected for that year and half trying to determine if there was anything I could do to change or make the situation better, until I realized it was not me. Everyone saw this at the time, except those that had the power to stop it. By the time they finally did, people’s lives, careers and mental health were already hurt. I had told them most of it before, they just did not listen because they wanted hard evidence, and I was not sitting around documenting everything instead of doing my job like that boss was. Some others were, but it did them no good either. As a former HR director myself, it was hard to lose confidence in HR. I tell this story as much as I can because I have been shocked at the people who have been through the same.

I was told that after I left, my old boss’s boss quit before they were fired or laid off, but my old boss is still there. They are no longer a supervisor though, because once even all the people they hired had the same experience as us, they finally believed us, once most of us were all gone and once our mental health, careers and lives were already majorly affected. Some other good people in the company were laid off after I left , so maybe I got out at the right time. The company was not as good as I thought and disappointed me. Luckily most of my bosses have been great, although I did Nanny for a couple for a short time who micromanaged their kids this way, so I felt kind of micromanaged as well, or required to micromanage them myself one, and both made me uncomfortable. I have also had coworkers at times, some even Leads or ahead of you seniority wise, maybe even training you, who micromanage, and that is hard as well. They see you struggling with something and do not jump in to help unless you ask, and sometimes even then, do not. However, they see you make a minor mistake and call it out from across the room. They never make any, and even have time to check everything you are doing while they do everything perfectly.

In so many of these cases, these people do have the best of intentions. They think they are helping, they are perfectionists. Because of this perfectionism, they are also often very good at certain parts of their job. However, this leads to them being very critical of anyone who even does it the least bit different, even if or when their way might be better, or when it might be okay for someone else to do the same thing differently. I say all of this as someone who has battled perfectionism my entire life, but I do not want to be them, but I also do not expect to change them. That is part of overcoming my own perfectionism. I cannot change them. I can only change me, my reaction, or my situation, as hard as that is sometimes, So I write this, not hoping to change them or those like them, but more so for people that are affected by them, like me, so they know they are not alone, but also for the ones that may find they are like that, as I once was, and do want to change. I also write this for those around who can change things for the person being micromanaged, like the ones who did not believe us all, and the ones who would not stand up with me and risk a job they eventually lost anyways.

As someone who has been a lead and manager, if you see someone struggling, a coworker or someone who works for you, or someone you work for, or your spouse, or your child, help them without them even having to ask, or if you do not see them and they ask, try to help them. Lead by example, by practicing, not preaching, and give them a little room in error. I work in childcare now, so of course if I saw a situation where I truly believed a child was in true danger, I would speak up to someone about what they were doing, whether it was intentional or not. However, I have often found these people often seem more concerned about things that are not life or death, while ignoring others that are or could be. Also, like with kids, when parents get onto you for everything, you eventually drown them out, or just do not care anymore because you seem darned if you do, or darned if you don’t, as is often said. For instance, with that old boss, if you did not take initiative you should have, but if you did take it you should have asked permission first. Life is not a Disney movie. Sometimes the bad guy just seems to win in real life, and it just hurts. I am almost 40, and tired, and I am ready for it just once to easily work out for me, as it seems to for them, but while actually doing the right thing. I guess I just wanted any of you reading this and feeling the same, to know you are not alone.

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

The movie Marley & Me nailed it’s Depiction of Postpartum Depression

The movie Marley & Me was based on a book, which was based on a real life story, which I guess should make it no surprise that it’s depiction of Postpartum Depression was pretty accurate to me. If you have not seen the movie yet, it came out in 2008 so this blog contains some spoilers. I will also warn you, some may have a hard time watching it. It is one of my favorite movies, but there is a part that deals with pregnancy loss that may be hard for some, and it does follow Marley, a dog, to the end of his life, but I personally love a good tearjerker sometimes. As someone who experienced postpartum depression myself, it felt so good to relate to the main character Jennifer Anniston played. The postpartum depression part was probably only about 10 minutes of the movie, but that is part of my point. It was one thing that happened in their life. The way she acted during that time was not the person she was, it did not define her, but I could relate to her character the entire movie. 

She was a planner, and had her whole life planned out early on, but later in life realizes, as I have, that it is the things you don’t plan that end up being the best parts of life. She wanted to have kids, she wanted to get married, she loved children and animals and was a sweet person, but after she has her second child, and is overwhelmed, she seems filled with rage. In one scene, she finally gets the baby and toddler both down to sleep, then she hears the trash man coming and knows the dog is about to start barking and wake them up. He does, and she loses it. I could totally relate, and was so relieved to see such a realistic view of postpartum depression I had not seen before, except in my own life. Her husband did not understand what happened to his former wife, until his boss suggested it might be postpartum depression. He now dreaded coming home and when he mentions the postpartum depression to her, at first, she gets angry and defensive, a normal reaction for many. 

They later have a heart to heart where she opens up about how much she had to give up to be a mom and a wife. Earlier in the movie, she was having more success than her husband when it came to their careers, but eventually she wanted to stay home with the kids, and gave it all up for her family. Her husband eventually became more and more successful, and he often started to wonder what he was missing out on as well at times, as he had a single friend who was always traveling and always with different women. One day he realizes how good he has it though, and realizes that his single friend is actually jealous of what he has. Even her husband in the movie reminded me a lot of my husband. Even though she chose being a wife and mother, she sometimes missed all she gave up too, which is normal of course, and she and her husband both admit not realizing how hard it would be sometimes. 

I personally was not able to stay at home, but at one point in my marriage, I was the breadwinner. My spouse and I have kind of taken turns in that over the years. Once we had a small child, and both of us were trying to be managers, I chose to step down from management because it was just too hard. My husband eventually changed jobs to one with much more work life balance too, even though it was still a management position, but somehow he ended up making even more than he did before and having more growth opportunities, which honestly made me a little jealous. However, I still do not regret the choice I made. When I changed jobs, my daughter was just starting school, and having a job with more work life balance allowed me to go on field trips with her, help with a class Christmas party and be involved in so many other things I would have missed otherwise. 


In the movie, it goes from showing the wife and husband talking things out, and joking no more kids for a while, to years later when they have another kid and they are all in a much better place. Kind of like the movie The Notebook, where they do not show you how they go from passionate young lovers to dying together in their 90’s, they do not show you how they got from that one point to the other, because it is a movie, and from experience I can tell you, they cannot fit all that into one movie.

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

My Love Hate Relationship with Cleaning and Planners

I think I started using planners in college. After college, when I started working in Human Resources, at one point I had a work planner and a personal planner. When my husband saw some of what I had written in there, which included some things most people just remember all on their own daily, he joked if I had written to breathe in there. When my OCD and the Anxiety it causes got worse than ever postpartum, and I became severely depressed, I took a short break from planners. This started when I accidentally lost mine and decided to try life without one. I eventually started writing to do lists again and started using my work Outlook calendar for work and personal reminders. I would mainly have reminders at the end of the day pop up, like my daughter is supposed to dress up for crazy hair day at school tomorrow for instance.

When I eventually took a break from the corporate world and became a preschool teacher again, I had to buy an actual planner again because I was not on a computer all day anymore. I could have set up reminders on my phone, but this is one area I remain old fashioned. I love to write it down and cross it out and I love that it can never die, unlike my phone, so when I have that urgent feeling to add something before I forget, I can just write it down. Doing this sometimes even helps me sleep better and get it off my mind and can be a good thing when I don’t get too obsessed. I think using the written planner gives me some kind of feeling of accomplishment and more of a feeling of control. However, when I didn’t get it done, it would often stress me out. I would also often find myself writing too many things down and becoming too dependent on having to write them down to remember anything. Once my lists got too long, I would become overwhelmed. Over the years, I have learned to incorporate planners into my life again, without letting it overwhelm me.

People with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder obsess over different things. Two of the things I always have obsessed over are planning and cleaning. When we are having people over, and we get the entire house clean and it stays pretty clean for about two to three days, it is the best feeling in the world to me still, even now that I have gotten my cleaning obsession more under control. I can handle a mess more than I used to. I had to learn to because my husband is messy, and then we had a child, and now two dogs as well. Boy was dog hair hard for me to get used to at first, but I finally have. However, occasionally the house will get messy enough to start stressing me a little bit and cleaning it does make me feel better. It can be therapeutic. I don’t even normally do it for others, it is more for me, like it feels like my life and everything else is under control if everything around me is clean and in order. When things get too out of order, it can make me feel like my life is out of order, even if it is not. When I go to other people’s houses, I don’t find myself judging the cleanliness, and if anything if I see a little dust it makes me feel better to know we are all human and no one has a perfectly clean house all of the time. Even if it is pretty messy, I may not want to stay and live there in it daily, that probably would stress me out in the long term, but I can visit for a short time and be just fine.

The medication I currently take is often given in higher does to women with eating disorders. I never thought of my OCD as similar until I realized, I clean because I think it is something I can control. I have never had an eating disorder, but others close to me have and I do know I have been told it is often feeling like you think you control that one thing, your weight. The truth is you are really out of control, just like I am not controlling the cleaning, it is really controlling me, when I am stressed so much based on whether it is done or not. My obsession with planning is about trying to have control as well, but again something that actually makes me out of control and has consumed my life at times. When I was at my worst postpartum, I remember cleaning our house even though I was supposed to be getting ready to go to someone else’s house, with my husband and daughter. I have also knocked down cobwebs in the middle of having guests over the moment I noticed them or have been late, even to my own parties at my own house. When people would show up, I was still cleaning, so my husband entertained while I got ready.

Some people with OCD often get offended when people who do not truly have OCD but like things clean, joke about being OCD, but I don’t because for one, I actually did that myself before I realized I was actually OCD. I also realize, just like when I did it, some people truly do not realize how much cleaning can consume someone’s life, but it can. Obsessing over anything can and is not healthy, including when I used to change out the pictures in our house constantly, until my husband pointed out one time that no one had even come over since the last time I had changed them. Obsessing over these things is something I may have to battle off and on the rest of my life, but now that I am aware of that, it is much easier to try and keep a handle on it, with the help of those around me and help from other things, like medication.

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

My Experience with Postpartum Rage

When you imagine someone with depression, you imagine them crying a lot, maybe sleeping a lot. I never imagined them angry, but anger and rage can be symptoms of depression, postpartum depression, other mood disorders and postpartum mood disorders. Before I went through severe postpartum depression, most people even closest to me would not describe me as someone with a temper. My husband, maybe at times, like when we fought, but even then, nothing like the rage I had postpartum at times. People would mostly describe me as happy and bubbly, even when I was pregnant. I honestly think sleep deprivation was the main contributor to my rage because it was the worst in the middle of the night, when my daughter would not sleep, and therefore I did not sleep. This made me so angry, because I was so exhausted, and the angry person I was becoming made me even more angry, a vicious cycle. I wanted to be happy and bubbly again. I felt like I was being the worst version of myself for my daughter and I did not know how to change it.  

I also showed the rage only at home usually around my husband and daughter where I felt the most comfortable. Unfortunately, we often take it out on those closest to us for this reason. This is the main reason my marriage almost ended, and this is what I felt the most guilt for when it came to how I treated my daughter postpartum. However, now she is almost 13 and does not even remember those moments. I have also told her about them and she understands as much as a 12 year old can, or honestly at 12, it seems like she understands better than most adults, and I hope that never changes. Since then of course, I have found healthier ways to take things out, or to deal with them before they come out in the form of rage. I do not think I am the happy bubbly person I was before my depression. I am pretty often, I mean I am a preschool teacher, but not as happy and bubbly as I used to be, and I don’t say that as a bad thing. I do not bottle up my emotions all day anymore and only let them out at home. I was not intentionally doing that before, more subconsciously really I think, but I of course learned this was not the healthiest thing for me or those around me. Also, when my husband I do argue, which is a lot less these days than even before my postpartum depression, and definitely a lot less than in the midst of it, there is not as much built up as before, and I don’t think I even have the temper I had in fights that I did before, although he may say otherwise, but don’t listen to him. Don’t listen to him about how many Amazon packages I order either. 

I used to have such a head in the clouds view of the world and since that world has been shattered, I have become more of a realist. I honestly hate it sometimes and wish I could be in the clouds again. I try to get closer to that again the more time that has passed, but I am still so scared to get knocked out of the clouds again and for that rage to return. I honestly do not think it ever would as strongly though, because I have been knocked down before, and it took a while, but I was able to get back up.  

Here is one good source I have found for those looking to parent without the constant anger and losing their cool and who want to enjoy parenting more. This one is aimed at mothers but currently, due to COVID, I think everything is online right now anyways through zoom, podcasts, etc. Even when in person they probably allow men, or could supply some other good resources for fathers as well I am sure.  Help for postpartum depression, anxiety and rage | Happy as a Mother


Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

Great Book for Explaining Postpartum Depression to Kids!

I ordered this book to read it myself before suggesting and it seems like a great book to explain postpartum depression to a small child whose mother may be going through it after having a younger sibling.

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

Mothers Need Sleep and the Homeless Need Homes

In a postpartum support group I am a part of, mothers often post desperate for solutions to their baby not sleeping. Many are on medication and/or in counseling or trying other things to recover from postpartum mood disorders, but medication and therapy do not solve sleep deprivation. Many others will offer endless advice on how to get your baby to sleep through the night and if you try any and they work, that is awesome. I was one of those desperate mothers years ago who tried everything and my child just would not sleep. Now she is 12 and I can hardly get out of bed before lunch sometimes. I now work in a daycare and there is almost at least one child in every class that will not nap no matter what you do. At work, I feel like a baby whisperer sometimes as I get 5 one-year olds to nap, and sometimes for 2 to 2 and half hours. I could not even do this with my one child at that age. Before she was born, I usually slept through the night. Meanwhile, some people, like my mom and husband, can often function on little sleep.

I dealt with serious sleep deprivation for years and I am sure it contributed partially to my OCD, anxiety and depression getting so bad. So to mothers who are asking, what do I do? Especially in the midst of a pandemic right now? Many say they have no help, but you have to find a way to get sleep. Whether it is allowing your baby to safely play in their crib or a bassinet or pack in play next to you or in their own room while you sleep, even if they do not sleep, whether it trying to form at least one good friendship with a neighbor, even if you have no family in town, to have someone who can occasionally help you or watch your child while you rest; whether it is paying someone if you can afford it or seeking free help if you do not. On a show I watch, I remember the adults on their street used to take turns every weekday taking care of all the kids on their street, so one person would have all the kids one day a week, which seems genius to me and costs nothing.

Even during the pandemic, the daycare I was work for is open and safe. I actually caught COVID-19 before working there from my husband’s work. He is a restaurant manager and I have not gotten sick at all since working at the daycare. We clean way more than most of us do at home and we wear masks, etc. Before the daycare, I did keep two kids in their home for a family who was working and none of us got sick. If you have a partner, whether you stay at home or work or both work, it does not matter. Neither of you can work 24-7, take shifts, give each other breaks.

If you still say there is no way, you have no help or partner, or you breastfeed and have to be the one to feed the baby, do not give up, try to figure out a way whether it involves pumping or other solutions. I personally chose not to breastfeed for my mental health. My daughter is super smart and healthy. I am not trying to discourage breastfeeding at all, but your mental health is more important for you and your baby in my opinion, so whatever reason, do not give up on finding a solution. Sleep is so important, and taking care of yourself so you can take care of the baby is so important. Move closer to family if you have to, take drastic measures if needed. If you live close to me, I would love to keep your child while you nap or even get a full night’s sleep for free, I am a mother and take care of children for a living and have offered and no one has ever taken me up on it.

People often attempt to resolve the homelessness problem by giving the homeless food, giving them temporary shelter, trying to help them get off drugs or alcohol or forcing them to in return for shelter, or assisting them in getting a job, donating them supplies, and sometimes they actually give them a home. Luckily, that last one, the only one that actually makes them no longer homeless, is becoming more common. People often do not like this option because they do not get a home for free so why should anyone else? So instead, we spend more tax dollars on emergency services used due to these people living on the street then we would just building them a place to live.

Many of these people are veterans, people who were willing to sacrifice their life, but instead sacrificed their mental health for the rest of us. Some are just people who have just fallen on hard times temporarily and need a little help, but many have some mental health issues or addictions to drug or alcohol that cannot be quickly or easily resolved. In the mean time they need a home. Mothers getting sleep with young children cannot be quickly or easily resolved, but they need sleep in that waiting time until their kids sleep past lunch when they are older. Many mothers are sacrificing their sleep and mental health for their families. Can we just start homing the homeless and allowing mothers to sleep somehow instead of wasting more money and time doing things that do not resolve either issue?

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

Having Our First Child Almost Ended Our Marriage

My therapist once told me that when people have young children it is the hardest time on a marriage. I never realized this before. My mother left my father when she found out she was pregnant with me and my sister was not even two years old yet and if you ask my mom why, she says she would have tolerated his behavior forever, but realized she could not put her kids through the same. So you think since that is how my parents marriage ended, that I would realize a lot of marriages end around the same time. However, my mom met met my stepdad not long after and they were married by the time I was 10 months old. He had one child already and she had two, so they started their marriage with 3 children and this is the main marriage I grew up seeing. They are still together over 37 years later. I always grew up seeing them the same way, with kids around all the time. It was not until they were empty nesters that I actually saw a different type of relationship. When the grandkids were around, it was a lot like my childhood, but when it was just the two of them only, I think they had to adjust because they were not used to that.

It was the opposite for me and my husband. We met at 14, started dating at 16, were engaged at 21, married at 23 and had Aubrie at 26. We had been together 10 years just the two of us, we did not even have a dog.  By the time we were ready for that responsibility we decided to have a baby.  Now we have two dogs and a 12 year old daughter and are trying for more kids. If we have more, this time it would not be the shock to our alone time it was the first time of course. If anything, now we have gotten used to this and going back to an empty nest would be another adjustment, but one we are well aware of this time. If Aubrie is even gone for a day, we think it is too quiet in the house. If Aubrie and I both go somewhere without my husband, he gets lonely. I picked on him for being the main one to freak out when she went to Kindergarten, but that might be me when it comes time for her to move out, like the mom in the movie Blockers.

When I worked in a retirement community for years, some of the women would often come hang out in the lobby instead of their apartments or homes across the street. They were so used to their husbands working, but now they were retired and home all the time and got on their nerves. My mom and stepdad are both now retired and have my mom’s mother living with them and they all need breaks from each other at times. I am still part of a postpartum support group to help women who are still going through postpartum depression like I did years ago. Without sharing anything that would identify anyone, here are some regular posts from it relating to marriage:

“Mamas who are/have fought & argued with their husbands a lot… does it get any better?... I feel a lot of anger, resentment, & disappointment towards him. I still love him, but I don’t feel like he hears me anymore, or cares. He says he does, but it doesn’t feel like it.”

“Is this normal? Will this likely get better with time? I feel like we’re heading towards divorce, which scares the crap out of me because I am a stay at home mom…”

“Anyone leave their husband while pregnant or with a newborn? I’ve begged my husband for more support, financial and emotional and haven’t gotten it…”

“It was tough emotionally to leave my husband, but it literally burned my soul to feel like a single parent while laying beside my partner. I begged him to help but it fell on deaf ears because he assumed I was just being a emotional woman…”

“It’s been 19 months since I’ve given birth. I feel as if my marriage is falling apart. I feel like my husband is grieving the person I use to be and I can’t blame him. I hate the way I feel now. This isn’t me. It isn’t the person I want to be. Home doesn’t even feel like home anymore. I just want to be the person I was before having a child.”

For those of you feeling this way right now, you are not alone and it can get better. Your marriage can survive this, but even if it does not, you will be okay. At one point I did not think mine was going to, and my doctor even said I grieved the loss of my marriage like a death. I went through the stages of grief and eventually I decided I had to be okay for me, for my daughter and for everyone else who loved me regardless. I could not control the actions of my spouse and it takes two, so yours could still end even if you personally try everything you can to fix it. It was not easy and it took a lot of time and it took both people admitting their mistakes and trying to do better. Ten years later I feel my marriage is so much stronger and better. It is so important to parent as a team. Life has changed for both of you, you are both tired and stressed a lot of the time, both of you might be missing the freedom you had before and the person you were before, and one or both of you also might be missing the person your spouse was before. Whether you both work outside the home or one stays home or one or both work from home, you both need to support each other instead of it always being a competition of who has it worse or is doing the most.

A lot of times as parents, we try to push through exhaustion, sickness and everything else to take care of our kids. Every once in a while though, if you do this for too long without a break or help, you often reach a breaking point, and when someone helps you even just in those breaking point moments, it can make all the difference in the world. Now my husband and I do a better job of recognizing when the other one is at that point. I try not to keep score anymore on who does what. I do what I can when I can and if I get too overwhelmed or tired or sick or anything else to do it, I know now that my husband will probably realize it and help me, and I try to do the same for him.  Of course our marriage is still not perfect. My husband is not even thrilled about my book and blogs, never has been. He is not as open of a person as me. He will give you opinions about politics and current events and religion all day long, all of that controversial stuff, but when it comes to talking openly about the worst year or two of our lives and marriage, not so open. I had him read my book before publishing it and asked if he suggested changing anything. I even wanted him to write his own chapter or allow me to based on what he told me, but he had no interest in doing that. He tries to be supportive regardless, because he knows for me, the sharing helps me and it helps others too and it is something I feel I need to do.

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.

How Postpartum Depression Helped Me Find My True Self

It has been 10 years since I finally realized I had severe postpartum depression and got some help. I finally realized I had always had Obsessive Compulsive Disorder that also caused Anxiety. This got severe after having a baby, going through a layoff and a couple of deaths in the family while also dealing with the effect this all had on my marriage. It also caused me to get severely depressed. While going through it, of course I did not act like my old self. My old self was so responsible, my old self was always trying to be perfect. My old self finished college in only 3 years and graduated with honors, had a 401k and her own insurance at 21, and her own house at 22. My old self did not drink until I was almost 22 because I did not want to become an alcoholic like my father. My old self had not tried a cigarette. I started getting treated for my depression, OCD and Anxiety at 28.

I tried my first cigarette finally at 29 just because I never had. Just like with drinking and gambling, it did not become a common habit, just an occasional social thing. Turns out I do not have that addictive nature. I hardly drink, gamble or smoke, I do not drink coffee and I used to hate shopping. I like it sometimes now, especially online in my pajamas, but I am still definitely not addicted. My husband might say differently based on all of the Amazon packages he sees on a regular basis at our door, but don’t listen to him. My only true addictions are cheese and Dr. Pepper. Not that these last two are to be taken completely lightly. They have caused me some weight gain over the years, and I have majorly cut back on both to lose weight and be healthier.

We all have our vices, but a lot like Randall on This Is Us, I eventually realized in my late 20’s, that my biggest vice was trying to be perfect and trying to take care of others and please others instead of myself. I eventually learned that taking better care of myself made me better at caring for others. It also made me happier and those around me happier. Who knew being a little selfish actually allows you to be more selfless? It did not make everyone around me happier though. Some people do not like it now when I speak my mind, even though I have always had to hear them speak theirs. I have been asked what makes me think anyone cares about my opinion. I have been told that before I may have not given my opinion enough, but now I give it too much. I had to have new boundaries, but I found this was only in relationships that were not great to begin with. I have had to set boundaries in relationships with certain family or coworkers in order to maintain a civil relationship. It is a constant challenge, because you have to always weigh the effect of continuing or ending the relationship on your mental health. You can end relationships, even with family members, and you can change jobs, but neither is usually easy.

I have also found though, that when being my true self, I formed closer relationships with people I did not have close relationships with before. Turns out some people that did not like me when I was not my true self, liked me now that I was my true self.  Meanwhile, others liked me when I was being who I thought they wanted me to be, but no longer did once I was my true self, and luckily there were some that liked me before and after, because they always saw my true self. The thing is I was not intentionally not being my true self. That is the thing about being lost, you do not even realize you are sometimes. I ignored the signs and red flags, they are always easier to see looking back. My daughter has got me into a show recently about two best friends called Alexa & Katie. When Katie, who has Anxiety, decides to major in Business instead of Acting in college, because how practical becoming an actor is, she starts to have panic attacks, and does not realize it is because she is making a decision to be practical instead of doing what she really wants to do.

When I work on my book and blogs, I cannot explain the peace it gives me. I work my thoughts out through writing and I enjoy it so much. I also enjoy that some others enjoy it. I know many do not, and think I ramble even, but if I could do one thing regardless of how much money I ever made, this would be it. Obviously this is new to me and I have not made my fortune doing it yet, so I still am a preschool teacher on the side, but lately I make sure even my side job is something I enjoy a lot. It needs to be enough to pay the bills and that is it. I may never make a lot of money doing this, but I will still do it, because I do not do it for the money. Although, of course I would not mind becoming a bestseller.

I share my story for many reasons. One is that maybe what I went through could have been prevented. Maybe if I had done certain things earlier, realized certain things other it would not have happened. Or maybe it had to happen for me to find myself. Even if it had to happen, I still want others to know they are not alone in this and it can not only get better. You can not just get back to your old self, you can become a new better you. I feel like some people never experience this. I know some people who seem to handle anything life throws at them. They never seem to stop and get majorly depressed or if they do, they push through and do not show it, but they also seem to just get through life. Maybe that is the only way they can survive, but for me personally, facing a lot of scary truths and questions and learning to live life to the fullest as my true self has been so hard, but was also needed for me to survive.

Bio: Amanda Dodson Gremillion published her first book in 2012. She began revising it in 2019 and republished it as Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine. The story chronicles her experience with severe postpartum OCD, anxiety and depression. Amanda is a graduate of Auburn University, and now lives in Calera, Alabama, with her husband, Jay, their daughter, Aubrie, and their two dogs, Honey Girl and Cooper. She hopes to write more books in the future. Follow Amanda’s journey on Facebook,  or twitter at https://twitter.com/AmandaGremilli2 and order her book here.  Also, follow her on the Mighty here Amanda Dodson Gremillion | The Mighty Contributor or listen to her podcast here Just Buy Her A Dress and She’ll Be Fine • A podcast on Anchor . You can also find her on Instagram here Amanda Dodson Gremillion (@justbuyheradress) • Instagram photos and videos.