Like many fathers, Adam Elmaghraby enjoys spending time outdoors with his daughter. On weekends, he takes the 3-year-old to a farmers market, sharing his love of food with her and teaching her about fruits and vegetables.
Elmaghraby especially appreciates this time with his daughter, because his entry into fatherhood was difficult. A few months after her birth, he struggled with bouts of paralyzing anxiety and depression.
“Shortly after my daughter was born, I started feeling anxious. My mind would swirl, and I felt out of control. I didn’t have enough time for myself, parenting and my professional life,” he said.
Like many new parents, Elmaghraby struggled to adjust to the child-care responsibilities and sleep deprivation that a baby brings. As his mood worsened, he started to blame parenthood. But it took him nearly a year to reach out for help. Once he saw a doctor, he was diagnosed with anxiety and depression, the two most commonly diagnosed mental illnesses. However, Elmaghraby believes he was actually suffering from the same mental health concern that affects up to 15 percent of women each year: postpartum depression.
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