Hayden Panettiere Enters Treatment for Postpartum Depression

10/13/2015 at 05:00 PM ET

Hayden Panettiere is on the mend.

The Nashville star, 26, “is voluntarily seeking professional help at a treatment center as she is currently battling postpartum depression,” her rep tells PEOPLE.

“She asks that the media respect her privacy during this time.”

Panettiere, who is mom to 10-month-old daughter Kaya Evodokia with her fiancé, professional boxer Wladimir Klitschko, has been open about her struggle since her baby girl’s birth last December.

Hayden Panettiere Daughter Kaya Evdokia First Photo Michael Sterling Eaton

“I can very much relate,” she said last month during an appearance on Live! with Kelly and Michael, discussing her character Juliette Barnes’ own PPD journey.

“It’s something a lot of women experience. When [you’re told] about postpartum depression you think it’s ‘I feel negative feelings towards my child, I want to injure or hurt my child’ — I’ve never, ever had those feelings. Some women do. But you don’t realize how broad of a spectrum you can really experience that on. It’s something that needs to be talked about. Women need to know that they’re not alone, and that it does heal.”

She continued, “There’s a lot of misunderstanding — there’s a lot of people out there that think that it’s not real, that it’s not true, that it’s something that’s made up in their minds, that ‘Oh, it’s hormones.’ They brush it off. It’s something that’s completely uncontrollable. It’s really painful and it’s really scary and women need a lot of support.”

Added Panettiere, “Women are amazing. We do something that no man can do on this planet. I mean, we grow a human being in our body!”

— Sarah Michaud with reporting by Julie Jordan

Share this story:

Your reaction:

Add A Comment

PEOPLE.com reserves the right to remove comments at their discretion.

Showing 102 comments

Mrs. B on

I wish her all the best in her recovery. I hope she gets better soon so that she can enjoy motherhood.

Guest on

Wishing her well. Planned or unplanned, it’s interesting how her story line on Nashville mirrors her real-life experience.

EllaHella on

Wishing her a speedy recovery. To be honest one does not simply recover from depression. Yes I know this is PPD but depression is a lifelong disease. Best luck to her.

jlduke55 on

This made me tear up for some reason, remembering my own struggle I guess. Bet it took a lot of courage to admit she needed that kind of help, I truly wish her the best and hope she gets better soon!

Linda – Canada on

Poor girl. I know how difficult anxiety and depression can be ….. I hope she can get it under control. Good for her to be open about it.

Christina on

I am glad she is seeking help with her PPD, I am one o the lucky ones who did not suffer from PPD after either one of my children but I have had several friends go through this and it’s such a struggle. I wish her all the best!!

Ariel on

Poor thing. Wishing her the best so she can enjoy her blessings to the fullest!

Gina on

If she is asking for privacy why is People blasting it all over their website?

Zeze on

Wishing her the best, I’ve been there too and it’s terrible!

Katie on

I never dealt with this but I believe it can happen and I wish her and all who deal with it the best. I admire her for not ignoring it.

Pam on

I suffered from PPD after my 1st child was born, I never wa Ted to hurt him or myself, but I had very little interst in being a mother. Thankfully I had my husband and a good friend to help me out. About 5 months after he was born I seemed to snap out of it, that was what I felt like , and I was lucky it was fairly mild. And short lived. I was more prepared the 2 nod time but didn’t have that sadness I was a bit stressed for about a week but after that I was like, ok, you have 2 kids pull your head out of your bum, and I was able to. I was lucky, many more women aren’t able to snap out of it so quickly or easily. I hope once she is better she can share her story so other new moms can know they aren’t alone.

Guest on

I wish her the best and for her to get the help she needs.

Bossbabe on

I went through this with my son and I was afraid to get help because I thought they would take him away or people would think I was crazy. I never thought of harming him, but I was so disconnected from him, from myself, I was numb. I wish I had gotten help, I would have gotten better sooner. It’s a biochemical reaction that completely takes over your brain. I wish her well, and I would tell her you are not a bad mom for going through this. You are an awesome mom and an even better one for recognizing you need help and being proactive in getting it.

nsg on

She wants this matter to be private and now it’s a top story. I’m sure this is the last thing she needs during her recovery.

Taylor on

I love her character on Nashville and filming Juliette’s storyline right now must have really hit home for her. Best wishes.

SIrvine on

Good for her in getting the help that she needs. I wish her well along with her family.

Susan on

i was hit hard with it after my daughter. You think you won’t get better but you will…hang in there.

Emmy on

I wish her much love. My daughter and only child born 37 years ago, and I do remember feeling yukky. Much love to Hayden. It is natural, it is normal, it is a “mom ” feeling. Good for you for getting some assistance. Luv you!

Vamanos on

I know someone that had serious ppd so it can need treatment. I hope she gets better soon and the baby is all right.

Boo on

I have been there too. I am so happy she is getting help. PPD is real and it is debilitating. Sending prayers her way.

sas on

God how ironic! She’s suffered the same thing in her TV show, Nashville, and now in real life. Odd. Hope she gets better.

MW on

I wish her well, she seems like a strong, determined woman. Bless her family for being so supportive.

trish on

I had it and my family jumped in and took over and after a month or so I was ok but I had a friend that needed medication to help her.

Dawn on

So brave of her to share her struggle. Postpartum depression is brutal

Jess on

I suffered with post-partum back in 1991 after the birth of my daughter. It was awful. I couldn’t get out of bed, I couldn’t check the mail, I couldn’t eat, and could only take small sips of water. I will never forget it. I didn’t have a whole lot of support because back then it was taboo. People did not understand it at all – or at least didn’t want to talk about it. I never had the feelings of wanting to hurt my baby, thank God. Doom and gloom doesn’t even begin to explain how I felt. To be honest, I was just numb…my brain, my body, I had no control over anything. I will be praying for her.

Callie on

Thankfully I never had postpartum depression but I’ve met women who have had it pretty severely so very happy she is seeking help.

lili on

she´ll be fine
is very young and slowly will back to herself.

Anonymous on

Good for her for getting help. Kuddos and good luck!!!

PPD survivor on

I suffered from PPD with both of my children. It was HELL!! I was hospitalized both times and I can remember so vividly the guilt I felt when I had to leave my newborn babies for a week to be treated inpatient. You can’t fathom how bad it is unless you’ve experienced it. I wish her well! There is a light at the end of the tunnel!

Suzy on

Good for her. I’ve known many with debilitating PPD and those who say it isn’t a thing, are fortunate enough to not have to had gone through it.

rubyovertherainbow* on

Thank you Hayden. This announcement will help a lot of other mothers struggling with this disorder.

Emily on

I too suffered PPD 4months ago when i had my baby. I put a lot of pressure to nurse my baby and when I couldn’t it really took a toll. I was lashing out at my husband at my other daughter… I just wasn’t myself. it took me finally understanding that your body is like a car sometimes things don’t work like they should and it’s okay to get help or “take it to a mechanic” if you will good for you for recognizing and sharing your story for all the other struggling moms

Sadie on

It’s interesting how real lives coincide with art. It’s like when Idina Menzel was working on a show about divorce and starting over and then that paralleled her real life. I guess art reflects life.

Ether best, best to Hayden!

Anonymous on

I think she would want her experience made public. This needs to be talked about.

Cici on

How tough must it been to play that character while going through it personally? Life imitating art imitating life! (Side note: I’m so pleased there isn’t one negative comment!)

Debbe on

I only had post partum depression on a couple of occasions which happened during breastfeeding and when my uterus was contracting back down. It was intense but not enough to seek treatment so I feel blessed but also feel bad for Hayden and any other mom experiencing it. I wish I could tell Hayden it gets better. I hope she sees this. I am currently going through perimenopause and experiencing severe depression episodes that is also coming and going and it has been a year now, hopefully this too shall pass.

Good luck Hayden, if anyone can get through it…you can!

ginger on

I saw the 3 of the in pictures after she had the baby
The boyfriend was smiling touching the baby etc. She looked do disconnected. I thought to myself what is wrong with that girl. Now I know, since I never had ppd, I just knew something was wrong.

Kristin on

Best of luck to her. She’s very brave to admit publicly her struggle.

Dee on

Been there. It’s an issue that often gets overlooked in new moms.

I’m happy she is getting help and hope this serves as message to other moms out there that it is ok and help is available.

Kara on

Be weary of taking the med route. I was RX Effexor after my PPD diagnosis in 1998 after the birth of my 2nd child. The medication made me suicidal, hear voices, cut myself, angry, etc. I felt like I was going insane. After a cutting episode in the bath, my husband came in to find me bloody and crying. Thankful I did not harm my precious baby! I threw that med in the trash, sought other routes to heal and in 6 months felt so much better. PPD is real, you can’t snap out of it! I was a healthy young woman with zero mental health issues after giving birth, but PPD crept in like a thief in the night. I wish Hayden well. Hugs.

Jax on

I wish her all the best.

Maggi on

I had such horrible postpartum anxiety and insomnia. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep, I didn’t recognize myself in the mirror. It was beyond terrifying. I got help and I got better, but it took months and medication and a lot of support from family. If you are struggling with PPD/PPA, please get help.

Roe on

I wish her well.she is an amazing girl.

Shell on

It must be so hard to not feel right after giving birth. I was lucky to not have experienced that. I just hope she isn’t putting too much pressure on the Hollywood “must be skinny” mentality. That would be way too stressful.

kb on

It’s OK to seek help. Alot of women go through this and anyone who shames them is horrible. The female body goes through so much during pregnancy and delivery that it’s a wonder our bodies bounce back as quickly as they do! Never feel ashamed for getting yourself help. That baby needs its mother to be healthy and happy. I wish Hayden the best.

Dawn on

Best Wishes to her, I have struggled with depression and the right treatment is an absolute life saver. God Bless.

Lisa on

Best of luck to her. It was difficult for me as well. Hopefully she’ll be able to get better and bond and all that fun stuff soon.

Marcia Gerber on

From someone who also suffered from ppd, I applaud you for being open about it. Wishing you all the best!

Lisa on

I hope she gets better. It must be terrible. Now is the time to enjoy your new family and your feeling depressed. Hopefully she is getting the best treatment.

Rain on

One of the hardest things a woman can go through. Sending prayers your way, how brave you are to bring this forward. Btw, the women that want to hurt their babies are usually going through postpartum psychosis. There is a difference between the postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis.

Barbara on

Kudos for taking action. You deserve to enjoy your baby.

heavy duty on

Best wishes to her as she recovers.

em on

Feel better, Hayden! You have so many people sending you good thoughts, prayers, and well wishes. You are brave, and an example to women everywhere. I hope you take excellent care of yourself. Your family is so fortunate to have you.

pksaucier on

I also had PPD. It is very scary, but there is a lot of help out there if you look for it or if you have family who will help you look for it! I am saying prayers for Hayden (and all moms who suffer from PPD) today and hope that she remembers, this too shall pass. God Bless Hayden.

Becky on

Since I have no children, I can’t relate to this, but wish her all the best.To all that commented that they had it, so glad that all of you were able to get thru it and sorry for all the ones that didn’t have help dealing with it.

kw on

Best wishes Hayden. PPD is not an easy journey, but it does end.

guest on

Good luck Hayden in your recovery.

SHT on

I have been there. Mine was probably not as severe as hers, but it was not a pleasant experience at all. I wish her and her family luck with this.

Lauren on

Postpartum depression was the most terrifying experience of my life. I was too afraid to go to a hospital but it took months of medication and intense therapy before I began to recover. I wish Hayden the very best and hope that her honesty and openness encourages women to not be afraid to seek help if they are suffering.

myuntidydesk on

I’ve had depression off and on since I was 12 and have been on medication for it for over 13 years. Regular depression is hard enough… I am sure post-partum is worse because you probably get a ton of people saying to you that you are just tired or you have a healthy baby and to cheer up. I remember Hayden from her days on “Guiding Light” and I wish her all the best.

Carrotthebunny on

I was very fortunate not to experience PPD with the births of my children but I have seen how very real it is. My very close friend struggled with it. I wish Hayden the very best.

Miki on

She looks gorgeous in the family portrait. I hope she gets good help.

Guest on

I think she is awesome for dealing with this head on. So much stigma around mental health issues and she is brave and courageous to admit she is suffering and needs help. I suffered with ppd after my son was born. I never thought of hurting him, but I was so disconnected from him. I was so moody and generally just not myself. I knew what I was supposed to “feel” and how I was supposed to act. I tried to put this on, but I swear he could tell. I am sorrowful that I never sought help. It took me about 10 months to snap back. It took about another year or more to establish that bond with my son. He is now 5 and I adore him, he is my world. I wish I could have that time back with him, but healthy. I am pregnant now, and this time I will own my feelings and get help if I need it.

carolyn on

She wants to be the best mom she can be to that beautiful little girl, and this is the way to do it. Good for her. She has wonderful support in her ‘husband’ and family/friends. Love her & wish her & her family the very best xos

trish on

Hope she recovers quickly.

Gigi on

I remember reading a quote from her when she first became pregnant–basically that she had wanted to be a mama since she was a little girl. It makes me so sad that this awful mental health condition is robbing her of her joy right now.

carolyn on

She ofcourse wants her privacy, but I too believe she wanted to share to so to help others. She just wants understanding & compassion from others as opposed to unkindnesss. So I thank People for sharing this story. Now that it has been shared. She can have that privacy, knowing she has possibly helped others struggling too & be shown herself that others are sending best wishes to her & thanks!!!

Mollie on

So sad

Gigi on

Here is the quote from Glamour in April 2013: “I’ve lived a very big life and I don’t feel my age and I feel like I was born to be a mother.” So, so sad that awful Depression robbed the initial joy from her:-(

Bella on

Aww i feel so sorry for her, but treatment has cured so many mothers from this, so she is definetely in a better place than being at home battling this horrible condition. I wonder if she gets to see her baby while this is going on? I hope the husband will step up and do an amazing job, which i’m sure he will. What she was saying sounds so similar to OCD, mainly because of the intrusive thoughts she’s experiencing. I wonder just how many women have actually hurt their baby, and are now in jail, when all they had wrong with them was PPD. That’s really sad 😦 Hope Hayden will recover very soon. Love to the family xo

Anonymous on

Wishing her all the best she has a precious baby waiting for her.

She is an awesome young woman who isn’t afraid to face reality and by making her struggle public she is and will help other women in need

Molly Westmoreland on

I think this is so incredibly admirable. I respect her for her honesty, she is a HUMAN and this is common

stefani on

would anyone even know if her publicist didn’t put it out there? gracious, not everything needs to be on speed dial to the press

Kathy on

You are strong…you knew something was wrong and sought help. Do not see this as weakness. Prayers for a full recovery.

J on

I think a lot of moms can relate. Motherhood changes you so much & it takes awhile to balance and figure yourself out again.

Misty on

I have a friend that went through this, and had a pretty severe case of it. She never wanted to hurt her baby, she just didn’t feel connected. When I got pregnant, my Husband and I talked openly about it, and agreed that if I realized I needed help (or if he sensed something), we would both agree for me to get help. Luckily for me, it never happened. I pray for women that have PPD every day because of what I saw my friend go through. She is one of the best mothers I have ever seen with her child all these years later.

Guest on

I suffered from PPD with each of my 3 pregnancies. It got progressively worse with each pregnancy. With my last daughter in 1992, I felt no connection to her at all. I was suicidal. I didn’t tell anyone. I suffered in silence. I cried all the time. I couldn’t function at all. Everyone thought I had a bad case of “baby blues”. It was the most horrible feeling I’ve ever felt! It lasted for 4 months.

I’m so glad Hayden is brave enough to bring such an important topic to the publics attention. I wish her nothing but the best! I hope she feels all the love & support from the many, many women who’ve suffered in silence before her.

KT on

I really admire her for doing the right thing in seeking help. I wish her all the best!!!

Anonymous on

her fiancé looks kinda scary..wonder if its a healthy relationship

Anonymous on

Very glad she is looking for help and hope she is recovering from PPD soon.

Lyla on

I don’t have children yet, but PPD is something that I’ve heard about a couple of times and it honestly scares me because I already have depression. I truly do want to have children one day, but I don’t know much about PPD and/or how it would affect me if I were to get it. I’m so glad that not only is she receiving the help that she needs, but that she is also speaking out about it. I feel that by truly speaking about it and shedding a light on it she’s helping those who already have it and those, like me, who don’t know much about it.

Alex on

When she said her family members brushed it off, I can relate. People don’t take it seriously if you tell them you are depressed. Sometimes it takes a suicide attempt for them to pay attention.

I was diagnosed with depression and I’m a lot better now. Saw this video on youtube that helped a lot:

Ana on

I wish her all the best. I went through the same thing. But my husband had to be at work, and I didn’t have any help. So I had to push through. The depression never went away, but rather got pushed down and eventually became worse. I imagine it must be hard for her to leave her little one, but hopefully it will bring her some peace.

Anonymous on

Other anonymous who mentioned Hayden’s fiance’ being “scary looking” and wondering about the relationship- It’s just a bad picture. If you look at other pictures, he doesn’t look “scary” at all. A bit imposing, maybe, but he’s a big guy and they often do (the same goes for big gals before anyone blasts me for being sexiest!).

At any rate, I’m glad she’s finally getting the help she needs.

Anonymous on

I think she has a beautiful family. This happens to many women and I’m glad there is help so women can get through this tough time. Best of luck for any women going through this hard time. Just remember don’t hurt your child walk away and seek help please!!!

Volly on

Hope she is getting speed recovery!

Melissa on

I wish her all the best. I suffered from ppd for about a year after my son was born and it is scary. She is bringing light to this very important topic. She is not alone and us mothers are not alone. God bless her.

JustSayin' on

I don’t understand when a celebrity asks for “privacy during this time” when they just got done talking about it all on national television? Does this make any sense? No. She tells everyone she has this problem, then turns around and says “Okay, let’s not talk about it now.”

Sara on

You obviously lack common sense. She is not asking the media not to report it. She’s asking the media politely not to stalk her family with it. Hayden has made it clear that she wants this problem discussed, not to be a taboo subject, however, she wants the space free from intrusion to deal with it. I swear some of you are dumb as a box of rocks.

Jodie Castellani on

Postpartum depression and its variants are serious matters. Kudos to Hayden Panettiere for bravely sharing her experience and choosing to get well via voluntary treatment. This will help erase the stigma and encourage many others to seek help for this highly treatable condition. She is using her celebrity platform for a wonderful cause and I wish her, and the many women who aren’t public figures but who are just as important, rest and complete healing.

Anonymous on

It happens to ALL women, just at different degrees. Some are lucky enough not to experience many symptoms and may not realize they even have it. You have been flooded with hormones – that’s some serious stuff! A lot of women think they’re just “really exhausted” which is WHY they’re crying a lot, tired ALL of the time, etc. I’ve seen every one of my friends and family members go through varying degrees, and most have opened up to me. They think they are the small percentage going through this, when they are NOT the exception, they are actually the rule. Good for Hayden bringing attention to this matter, so people can be aware of it, and women don’t have to feel guilty and keep it to themselves. It’s as common as PMS.

VA2Bmore on

Prayers for her and her baby. My sister experienced PPD with my niece. Doc dismissed it as “baby blues that will go away” but it lasted for so long that my family took turns keeping the baby. It’s very difficult. Glad Hayden is being proactive and not ignoring this.

JohnnyW on

She’s very brave to admit this to the world. Most people want the world to see their highlights and good side, and sweep the bad stuff under the carpet. She must be incredibly humble.

Xak on

Kudo for her that she is proactive and seeking for treatment on postpartum.

ShadowMommy on

I was diagnosed with OCD before I had my children, and then had PPD after having them. I took out my depression on myself, but am proud to say never once touched my children. I was very lucky, while the OCD does not go away the PPD at about 8 months. I had felt angry that at the most wonderful time in my life I was cranky, numb, and always sad. Then one day it was like the sun came out and I was shoved back into my body. I waste no moments with my children, and memories of that time cause me deep pain, but I am working on always being present.

Hayden, I know it is hard, but I commend you for being frank about your PPD. It will get better. Thank you.

Mrs. E on

Good for her for recognizing something was wrong and seeking treatment. I hope she gets well soon and I wish her family all the best!

Emily on

So proud of her for speaking up about this, being honest and seeking help. It will encourage so many other Mums who may feel ashamed about how they’re feeling to get help. I suffered for 3-4 months with PPD after the birth of my daughter in late 2012. I couldn’t eat or sleep and panicked about EVERYTHING! I felt so tightly wound every second of every day I was just waiting to explode. I sought help through medication and over time the depression dissipated and I was finally able to enjoy my child and enjoy being a Mother. I wish the same for poor Hayden!

melpamenae on

PPD is awful – went through it myself and know how lonely, scared, and desperate you feel… good for her in getting help. After I pulled through, I could fully enjoy my daughter and family – and with treatment she will too. So glad to see this story, as women need to know that PPD is normal and there is no shame in speaking up and asking for support.

Bridgette on

Good for Hayden for getting the help that she needs to come out in the other side of PPD. I too sought inpatient treatment for PPD after my son was born. It does help to talk about it. No one else there was suffering from PPD but everybody was so positive and encouraging. I was in therapy for several months but now my son is almost 2 and I am able to care for him and love being his mom. It’s a very difficult journey and there are setbacks but with a supportive family and qualified medical help it does get better.

WhoCares? on

I experienced PPD after suffering a miscarriage! Didn’t think that could happen until my OB-GYN told me. Hang in there Hayden, you will be just fine. Smart of you to recognize the signs and seek help. You are a great actress and mom.

Hea on

I hope you feel better soon, Hayden, and THANK YOU for sharing. This is important to talk about!

Renee on

Yes she asked for privacy but in being open about it, People is bringing awareness that post partum depression affects anyone regardless of celebrity status. If they didnt do this, eventually it would be in the news that she was in trestment and all kinds of assumptions would be made, like she was abusing drugs or fighting another health problem, or something else that is untrue. She has nothing to be ashamed of. Her positivity can show others who may be embarrased or ashamed of their feelings that this condition can be treated and overcome. Props to both her and People for seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.