A Tulsa non-profit is trying to raise awareness of perinatal depression in men

TULSA, Okla. — One in ten Dads is affected by depression after their baby is born.

This is something that most people associate with Moms while Dads are overlooked.

Leah Meyer is a therapist with the non-profit Family and Children Services which is in Tulsa’s Pearl District, says men are hit by this too.

“Men are taught oftentimes to not show their emotions they want to get through it they don’t want to be seen as weak,” said Meyer.

Perinatal depression in men can start when their partner is pregnant, lasting through to a year or two after their child is born.

Meyer says there are signs of perinatal depression to watch out for in Dads.

“It can look like anger and hostility those are actually symptoms of depression as well we also see increased substance use and then Just not trying to attach or bond with the baby,” said Meyer.

Muhammed Nitoto suffered from depression after the birth of his daughter.

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“I felt so many different things like the day my daughter was born. Obviously, I was extremely happy. I know it’s the happiest day of your life, but then I also remember just feeling this immense amount of pressure and then. Just not being able to. I’ve never felt like I was happy the way I was supposed to be felt like I was being happy the way I thought I was. You know, people thought you should be, but I was on the inside. I was really like sad,” said Nitoto.

Meyer says depression can have an impact on children.

“Fathers who have any kinds of mood or anxiety disorder if they have children in pre-school the children are much more likely to display behavioral issues have physical health problems as well,” said Meyer.

Meyer is helping the group, Post Partum Support International with an event in Tulsa to raise awareness of perinatal depression.

It’s called, “The Climb out of Darkness.” It’s being held at Turkey mountain on Saturday at 10:00 a.m.

The climb events have happened in other states across the country before but this is the first time it’s ever been held in Tulsa.

They’re raising awareness in the hope that more people both men and women will reach out and get help.

There will be resources there to get help and there will be a walk at Turkey Mountain.