This story just came out today in the Associated Press – thanks to my Aunt Jan for sending it to me. For those women going through a post partum disorder right now, please don’t be afraid. I thought about editing this story so it wouldn’t scare you, but it’s the truth and all of us need to be truthful with each other to help get rid of the shame that goes along with this illness. If you need to reach out for help, email me and I and the women across the country who have been through this will do WHATEVER we need to to help you.

Award-winning teacher kills baby, self
Wednesday, July 28, 2004

ST. CLAIR SHORES, Michigan (AP) — A woman who was honored this spring as teacher of the year killed her 5-week-old daughter and then herself after battling the type of depression that comes with childbirth, officials said.

Daniel Moffitt found the body of his 37-year-old wife, Mary Ellen Moffitt, on the couple’s bed Monday. Police say she killed herself, apparently by putting a plastic bag over her head. The baby, Caroline, was found on the couch, tightly wrapped in a blanket and also dead of asphyxiation.

“It’s horrific,” police detective Thomas Hannon said. “What else can you say?”

Moffitt had been undergoing treatment for postpartum depression, police said. Police were waiting for toxicology reports from autopsies conducted Tuesday.

In May, the East Detroit School District named her teacher of the year. She taught first grade at Crescentwood Elementary in Eastpointe.

“She told me how happy she was about having her first baby,” school board member Corrinne Harper said. “She said she was looking forward to having the baby — she didn’t even want to know what sex it was because she wanted it to be a surprise.”

Dara Knill, president of the East Detroit teachers union, recalled Moffitt as “a very upbeat person … just the kind of gal you could always approach.”


Copyright 2004 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.