You may know 32-year-old actress Jena Malone her from her role as Johanna Mason in The Hunger Games, but the actress recently opened up about her real-life role as a mother and the painful effects postpartum depression has had on her well-being. Jena and fiancé Ethan DeLorenzo welcomed their son, Ode Mountain, in May 2016, and while her Instagram feed is typically filled with scenic photos and sweet family moments, her latest post is a blurry photo that represents how much she's struggling — and it's something all mums need to read.
"Motherhood, depression, and self worth," she captioned the photo above. "I don't have anything beautiful to say. Except that this struggle is real. The sharp edges are too much to hold without compassion. I'm struggling with this. Compassion for myself and this moment of growth in my life. I know I am not alone in this. I guess I just needed to share, in hopes of being seen and feeling not so very much alone."
Postpartum depression can affect as many as 20 percent of new moms, and Jena is absolutely not alone. It's an inexplicable sadness that so many news mums feel; it evokes feelings of discouragement, shame, and desolation, but opening up about it does magical things for mothers.
Since she posted the photo about her postpartum depression, her post has been flooded with over 500 comments full of kind words and women sharing their own similar struggles.
"You are not alone!" one user shared. "My babies are grown now but I still remember that feeling. I was too frightened with my first to reach out for help. Was I not supposed to be blissfully happy? I had everything I had dreamed of. With the second my doctor saw I was struggling and got me through it. Once I could talk about it I found so much support. Thank you for being so open with your struggle. You never know how many mums you may have helped. Give it an hour, give it a day, give it a week or a month. It will get better."
Another woman added, "Was feeling exactly this today. Thank you for sharing. You're doing a beautiful job, you and the village."
"I don't know how such a beautiful precious life changing event can instead be such a dark place but it happens," someone wrote. "Please know you will get through this and the sun will shine again!"
Postpartum depression is a painful condition that so many women deal with silently. Jena opening up about her own struggle not only helps the community of women on social media, but we hope it also helps her feel the love of the village.