Brooke Shields says her postpartum depression created problems in her marriage

05/10/2005 at 10:07 PM ET

BrookeshieldschrishenchyBrooke Shields is worried that the postpartum depression she suffered after the birth of her daughter Rowan has permanently ruined the trust between her and her husband Chris Henchy. Brooke says Chris was helpful when she was dealing with the severe lows of her depression but that he always fears his wife is heading for another crash.

Brooke said, "Damage gets done. The baby is fine… but other people in my life, my husband, if I have a bad day, he looks at me, thinking, ‘Oh God, it’s going to come back again.’ There’s a lack of trust that was there at one time and I think that that’s damaging, and that’s damage to our relationship."

Brooke recently published Down Came the Rain : My Journey Through Postpartum Depression, a memoir about her postpartum depression.

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michelle Anne on

Saw her interview on oprah ,All I have to say is I hope I do not go threw this when and if I have kids!
And to all of you that have , hugs to you for making it threw!

sy on

I am sorry but what’s depression got to do with lack of trust. It’s not like she has cheated on her husband. It’s an illness. What is it that he does not trust? This is a very bizarre thing to say about your spouse. Either she is not being articulate about what she means to say, or he is not very supportive. If instead she had recurrent tumors, would he lose trust?

cat24 on

I don’t get the “trust” comment either… I’m pretty sure I suffered some degree of post-partum depression after my twins were born and my hubby didn’t seem to have a problem with it. Lucky me, I guess! 😉

Lizbeth on

I just saw Brooke last night at Barnes & Noble in Princeton, NJ, signing her book. She said she is weaning off of her medication so that she can get pregnant again. She plans to have the medication completely out of her system before she conceives. But she realizes she may have to go back on it in her 3rd trimester if she’s having problems with depression.

I think she’s headed to the U.K. for a play, so I doubt she’ll start trying until after that. But, if things go as planned, I imagine Brooke will be pregnant within the next year.

Melissa H. on

What Brooke needs now, more than ever, is support from her husband. Unless someone has been through this type of depression, they cannot possibly understand what it does to the sufferer. Loved ones also suffer as they helplessly watch the sometimes frightening changes in the person going through PPD, but they must seek to educate themselves so that everyone involved weathers the storm. Although her husband may never completely understand what she has been through, there is really no excuse for him not educating himself enough to be as supportive and understanding as possible. Sometimes people get embarrassed if their lives are portrayed as less than perfect. She didn’t choose this illness. It ran her over like a freight train. I know, because it happened to me. Maybe this is just a poorly stated comment by Brooke, but it sounds as if he is angry and took this illness personally (like why could she not be happy with all the wonderful things in her life) when it has nothing to do with him, the baby or material possessions. New mothers, regardless of their socioeconomic position in life, are on an equal playing field when this illness strikes. And, there is a lot of shame that goes with it, especially if those around are not supportive, because that only deepens the shame. She really needs his support right now, and he needs to view PPD as an illness, not as a personal failure, attack or betrayal of trust!

AngelBaby on

I know that I have read in a few different interviews that sometimes she wanted to throw the baby. And she thought about jumping out of her window but it wasn’t high enough. Maybe she had told her husband other things that she thought about doing to her daughter and that made him say he didn’t trust her. He might not completely understand the ppd but all he hears is his wife saying that she has negative feelings towards the baby and wants to harm her.

cat24 on

I have been through PPD, but to a much lesser extent and it’s not easy, but I don’t understand why it would cause a loss of trust, either. There’s probably more to the story…

Erin Walker on

I think she’s very gallsy(i.e. gutsy)to write about her struggle with Post-Delivery Depression.It’s a very difficult subject in our society.I remember reading that “People”cover story about her going through a lot to have Rowan Francis,but I guess we don’t know what’s behing closed doors.Good for her that her hubby was suportive of her.

Kresta on

I guess that what she wants from her husband, family and friends is that they don’t treat her as if she’s on the verge of a mental breakdown again. And if she has days where she isn’t feeling great that doesn’t mean she’s slipping into a depressive episode again. It just means that like everyone else, she sometimes has off days.

knowsit13 on

If you read Brooke’s book, that is not what she said. The quote is taken out of context from the chapter, and for what she meant.

Allison on

I saw Brooke on the Oprah show last week and was really impressed with her honesty and forthrightness. I hope she is blessed with a second pregnancy and that she does not have to go through PPD again.

kf on

I remember her saying on the Oprah interview that her husband came home after an errand to get a changing table and broke down in tears. Apparently he had seen all the happy mothers at the store and was so upset because he knew he wasn’t coming home to that. I had a little PPD and seeing my husband break down like that would have made matters so much worse…Anyway, I hope her next experience is a breeze!

Kiki on

It sounds like her husband is not very emotionally supportive. A lot of men are (sadly) like this. He needs to be more empathetic, put himself in her position, or at least TRY. Most men, if they could have children and experience the massive emotional and physical changes that go with it, would have only one. And you can just bet that PPD would be MUCH more understood than it currently is. Hell, there would probably be federal money for PSAs, free counseling and so on. Burns me up. Please don’t delete this. I’m not dissing anyone, just the way that American culture still treats women like second-class citizens.