Dear friend the following article is longer than my usual posts, but I hope you will take time to read it. I share my thoughts about depression in young mothers which is becoming rampant. It is an issue that needs to be addressed and needs to have positive answers. I believe we have to turn back as a nation to God's original plan to experience the full answer.
Blessings from Nancy
IT’S TIME FOR CHANGE
How far have we degenerated from God’s original plan?
Recently a new mother mentioned to me that before her post-partum checkup, the hospital called to check if she was suffering from depression.
“Why would they ask you this question? I asked.
“Oh, don’t you know it’s a standard question?” she replied. “Most mothers have depression after a baby. Didn’t you hear about the new mother who recently committed suicide because she was so depressed because of her new baby?”
I was appalled. What is their purpose? To get them started on anti-depressants? Make them victims? Give them a pill to counteract our deceived society?
Yes, I concede that there are some mothers who suffer severe hormonal PPD, but this is not normal motherhood. This is not what God intended.
Again, I can see how many young mothers today feel depressed as they begin motherhood. But a pill is not the answer. The reason is that we live in an environment where motherhood, originated by God, is not the vogue. Most mothers having their first baby are not conditioned for this role.
It’s time to come back to God’s original plan. It’s time for change. Let’s think about some of the reasons:
1. THEY ARE NOT PREPARED EXPERIENTIALLY
Many young mothers grow up in two-child families. They don’t grow up in homes where new babies keep arriving, the joy and delight of the home. As they grow older, they don’t have the opportunity to care for a baby, to see their mother nursing the baby as a natural part of life, or to experience the responsibilities of daily motherhood.
Friends and family don’t have babies in their homes either. Some never hold a baby until they hold their own baby in their arms. No wonder they feel overwhelmed. Their depression is not due to a clinical state, but because they don’t know what to do. They feel inadequate! Unprepared!
2. THEY ARE NOT PREPARED EDUCATIONALLY
Most young women today are not educated for motherhood. In fact, they are educated against motherhood. They’re educated and trained for whatever career they want to pursue in this world. Anything except motherhood.
They are brainwashed to think motherhood is an inferior career. Even when they prepare for marriage, counselors (even Christian counselors) tell them to delay motherhood and continue pursuing their career. Motherhood is always delegated to the lowest item on the list.
3. THEY ARE NOT PREPARED EMOTIONALLY
They are not encouraged toward motherhood. Because they don’t live in an environment of motherhood, it is unfamiliar to them. They don’t feel comfortable with being at home, cooking meals, or looking after a baby.
4. THEY ARE NOT PREPARED PSYCHOLOGICALLY
When the new baby comes along, they feel it is an interference to their career, college, or their plans for life. Although they love their baby because it is their own flesh and blood, they are thrown into confusion. This baby is a “wrench in the machinary.” How do they fit this baby into their lifestyle or well laid-out plans? No wonder they feel depressed.
5. THEY ARE NOT PREPARED FOR RESPONSIBILITY
It is true that motherhood is not easy. It is not for wimps. It is a life of selflessness rather than selfishness. Most young people today grow up with an entitlement attitude. They think everything revolves around them and nothing should get in the way of their plans. A baby arrives. Suddenly, they can no longer live their own life. Or do what they want when they want to. They must sacrifice for another person. They can’t even have a full night’s sleep. A little baby arrives to change their life forever.
But no matter what we do in life, nothing will always be perfect. Everyone who wants to do something great will face challenges, hardship, and sacrifice. A businessman has setbacks, trials, and disappointments. But he doesn’t give up and go into depression. He faces them head on, understanding they are part of life.
A missionary often faces hardship and persecution. Does he or she get into depression because life is not a bed of roses? No. They face the battles head on because they’re doing a great work.
It’s the same with motherhood. It is the most important career in the world. It is the highest career God gave to women. He equates it with joy. But every mother faces challenges. She will face laying down her own life for her baby. Sacrifice . . . yes. Selfless love . . . yes. But isn’t this what grows us into maturity? It takes us from the selfish and ugly to beauty and joy?
6. THEY ARE NOT PREPARED BIBLICALLY
Most young women have no idea of God’s plan for them as a woman. They don’t know what God’s Word says. Even young mothers in the church are often as ignorant as those in the secular world. Where are the older women who teach the younger women about being a wife and mother (Titus 2:3-5)? They are nonexistent in our churches today. Will they be responsibility for a nation of mothers who have no idea of God’s plan for motherhood?
I am saddened when I hear older women saying, “I don’t need to hear about motherhood any more. I’m well past that time of life.” I beg your pardon. We are never “past that time of life.” When the time comes that we can physically have no more children, we don’t abdicate motherhood. We were created to be mothers and nurturers until we go into eternity. We begin enjoying grandbabies. And then we move into the responsibility of teaching the young mothers of the next generation how God wants them to mother. How can we do that if we say “we are past that kind of thing”? I think many older mothers desperately need to hear God’s truth for mothers so they can pass on the truth to the next generation, rather than leading them astray.
Our humanistic society puts mothering at the bottom of the list. When God gives a description of the attributes of a godly woman in 1 Timothy 5:10 He puts mothering at the top of the list!
God did not create haphazardly. He created each female with a womb to conceive life and breasts to nurture life. He reminds us we will be preserved through embracing motherhood. Many scientific studies now reveal that the more children a mother has and the more babies she nurses at the breast the more protection she has against female cancers.
1 Timothy 2:15 (NASB) says: “But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.”
The Greek word for “saved” or “preserved” is sozo, pronounced sode’-zo. It is a powerful, multi-encompassing word meaning “to save, deliver, protect, heal, cure, preserve, keep safe, and make whole.” That means that through embracing motherhood a woman is saved, delivered, protected, preserved, healed, and made whole--physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. You can’t beat that!
The reason many young mothers (and older mothers) feel depressed and confused is because they have not embraced their role of motherhood. They love their baby. They love their children. But they don’t love the career of motherhood because they think it interferes with their life.
The true joy of motherhood comes when a mother not only loves her baby, but loves and embraces her role of motherhood. A mother who embraces mothering WILL NOT BE DEPERESSED. She experiences the joy, delight, and glory of motherhood that God intends for her.
7. THEY ARE PROPAGANDIZED TO DENY MOTHERHOOD
Liberal teachers and professors teach the students of this generation to despise motherhood. They direct them toward alternative lifestyles and that to murder the unborn babe is accepted behavior. They are heading them down a path of destruction. To get back to normality their brains must be reprogrammed again in God’s infallible truth.
8. THEY ARE ISOLATED
Another reason many young mothers feel depressed is because they are isolated. They don’t know many other mothers living around them. Their own mother is often working and not available. Or, even if she is, it is so long since she had babies that the is not confident herself.
Why do we have this scenario? Because mothering is not accepted as an important career in our society. I believe that when motherhood becomes the norm in society that depression will disappear (except for the genuine clinical PPD).
Mothers need one another. It is fun to have babies when family members, friends, and neighbors have babies at the same time. This is how God intends it to be.
When I was mothering my children I always had a Ladies’ Bible Study I my home. Every week, mothers, babies, and children filled my home. The children broke things and messed up my home, but we had great fellowship together. It was what kept us going through the difficult times.
I would encourage every young mother to find an encouraging Ladies’ Bible Study group where she can learn more about motherhood and find strength from being with other mothers. Make sure you find a group that encourages biblical mothering and not the opposite which is counter-productive!
Go to: http://bit.ly/PowertOfMotherhoodUS and order the manual, THE POWER OF OTHERHOOD. Every mother in the world needs this manual which takes you into the Bible to see what God says about you as a mother. It is a great manual to use at Ladies’ Bible Study Groups to share and discuss together.
LET’S WORK TOGETHER TO BRING CHANGE
We cannot let things carry on the way they are. Unless we rise up and make known the truth, the next generation will degenerate further away from God’s plan. You may not feel you can do this in a big way. But you don’t have to. Be faithful in the little opportunities. Start with your family, filling them daily with God’s truth and His plan for family life. Give them a love and awe for embracing life from God and an understanding of the horrors of abortion. Give them strong convictions to live by.
When you and your children see things wrong in society, don’t let it go without speaking about it. Teach your children what is wrong. Help them to have discernment between the right and the wrong, the clean and the unclean. Ephesians 5:11 says: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather REPROVE them.” Some translations say “expose” them. I don’t think there is anything sadder that seeing a young person grow up in a Christian home without godly convictions and without courage to stand up for truth.
As you go out of your home, always be prepared to drop seeds of truth wherever you go. Take a few Above Rubies magazines with you. Put them in a plastic bag in your purse so they don’t get mutilated. Give them to people and to mothers when you meet them. You may not have a chance to say a lot, but you’ll never know how the Holy Spirit can speak to them through the pages of the magazine. We need to get this magazine out in greater and greater ways. I’m tired of being bombarded with liberal and progressive jargon. The feminists and liberals do not keep quiet. Why do we when we have the truth?
For more ideas of how to spread Above Rubies, go to:
Encourage friends to go to the Above Rubies Facebook, and Above Rubies Instagram where they can be constantly encouraged in motherhood.
Most of all, live the plan. As we embrace God’s plan for family life with joy and positivity, we are a testimony to all around us. Happy, united, loving, and God-fearing families are the biggest blessing of the nation. When motherhood returns to normality in our society, we will see happy mothers instead of depressed mothers.
Many blessings from NANCY CAMPBELL * www.aboverubies.org
Painting: “Mother and child” by Lin Wang