Actress Hayden Panettiere Has Opened Up About Her Secret Battle With Post-partum Depression After Giving Birth To Daughter Kaya In December (14).
The star portrays a new mum struggling with the baby blues on hit country music TV drama Nashville, and the 26 year old admits she was able to draw on her own experiences with the condition for the role.
"I suffered a bit of post-partum depression," she reveals to America's Us Weekly magazine. "You're not alone or crazy, ladies!"
She adds to U.S. morning show Live with Kelly and Michael, "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 realise 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."
Hayden hopes speaking out about post-partum depression will help to remove the stigma attached to the illness, and encourage other mums battling the condition to seek help.
"There's a lot of misunderstanding," she explains. "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... '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.
"Women are amazing. We do something that no man can do on this planet. I mean, we grow a human being in our body!"
Little Kaya is Hayden's first child with her boxer fiance Wladimir Klitschko.
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