sleep deprivationIn her article in the Huffington Post on sleep and postpartum depression, Kim West makes a recommendation for brand new moms with postpartum depression with which I wholeheartedly agree:

Split nighttime baby duty so you each get at least one five-hour uninterrupted block of sleep. One of you is “on” from 8:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m., and the other from 1:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. (adjust these figures to your family’s schedule). When you are “off duty,” sleep in a separate area, and try earplugs, a fan, or a white-noise machine. The on-duty parent can sleep, too, but he or she will be the one who has to wake up to respond to and feed the baby.

That’s what my husband and I did when I had postpartum depression and OCD. It made a BIG difference.

And yes, he was working and had a full-time job at that time. Still, he made the sacrifice for our family willingly. Which was far better than the sacrifice he would have had to make if I had had to be hospitalized, at which point he wouldn’t have been able to go to work at all.

Just in case you get that argument against helping you out at night …

For more stories on sleep and postpartum depression:

On Postpartum Depression & Insomnia

Moms Need Sleep To Help Stave Off Depression

Photo credit: © Carol Hyman – Fotolia