Gwyneth Paltrow opens up about postpartum depression. (Dominique Charriau/WireImage)Paltrow with son Moses, 7, and 8-year-old daughter Apple. (PPNY/GSNY/Splash News)We here at omg! occasionally poke fun at movie star-turned-food-expert-turned-travel-expert-turned-style-expert-turned-expert-expert Gwyneth Paltrow because when she's recommending the average woman spend $18,000 on a spring wardrobe,boasting about the benefits of abackyard pizza oven, or getting chauffeured instead of walking four doors down the street, well, we just can't help it.But the Oscar winner impressed us Thursday night when she opened up on national television up about a tough topic, sharing an honest and personal account of her experience with post-partum depression.
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Despite the fact that Paltrow; her husband, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin; and their two children, Apple, who turns 8 next month, and 6-year-old Moses, may seem like the perfect — and for sure, amazingly attractive — family, Paltrow didn't feel like the perfect mother after Moses was born in 2005.
"There's this shame attached to it because if you say, 'I had a baby and I couldn't connect to the baby,' it's like, 'What's wrong with you?'" she revealed on the series premiere of interview show "The Conversation With Amanda de Cadenet" on Lifetime. "I think we feel such shame. I just didn't know what was wrong me. I couldn't figure it out. [Postpartum depression] never occurred to me."
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It was Martin, to whom she's been married for more than eight years, who helped his wife diagnose the problem, which included not being able to connect to her newborn son … or anyone else for that matter. "My husband actually said, 'Something's wrong. I think you have postnatal depression,'" she recalls. "I was mortified. 'No, I don't!' And then I started researching what it was and the symptoms and I was like, 'Oh, yes I do.'"
Paltrow isn't the only celebrity to reveal her battle with postpartum depression. Over the last several years, stars including Courteney Cox, Bryce Dallas Howard, and Brooke Shields (who famously had a war of words with Tom Cruise after the actor criticized her for taking anti-depressant meds) have spoken out about what's been dubbed "the baby blues."
During the Paltrow interview, actress and photographer de Cadenet revealed she too had dealt with postpartum depression after the birth of her twins in 2006 with Strokes guitarist Nick Valensi, but felt it wasn't something people openly talked about.
"That's why I talk about it, because even the awareness of it started to diminish it because I didn't feel like I'm dying or I'm crazy, period," Paltrow shared. "It was like oh, this is a thing. This is a real thing and these are the symptoms and I have them all.'"
And while she admits the symptoms have diminished, Paltrow's theory on getting rid of postpartum depression completely may not be ones new moms want to hear. "My theory is you never totally get rid of it. I think that once you get over the acute phase of it, I think it does change you," she revealed. "I feel changed by it. 100 percent."
The "Iron Man" star, does, however, look on the bright side, attributing the depression to introducing her to a new, important part of her life. "In a way it was hard, but it was great because that postnatal depression … opened me up to spirituality," Paltrow explains. "I don't think that I would have been curious and studying and reading. That has all helped me tremendously and opened my mind and eyes beyond what I could have imagined."
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