PARENTS
17/09/2015 06:19 BST | Updated 17/09/2015 06:59 BST

Powerful Photo Of Mum Crying 3 Days After GIving Birth Sparks Conversation About Postpartum Struggles

A mother has prompted a global conversation about postpartum struggles by sharing a photo of herself crying three days after giving birth.

Danielle Haines from Arizona gave birth to her son in November 2014, but only recently decided to upload this photo taken by her sister.

With her newborn son laying on her chest, Haines is pictured with tears in her eyes and she gives an honest account about how she was feeling at that moment.

She wrote: "I was so raw and so open, I was a fucking mess. I loved my baby, I missed his daddy (he went back to work that day), I was mad at my mum.

"My heart hurt for my brother because my mum left us and now I had a little boy that looked like him, my nipples were cracked and bleeding, my milk was almost in, my baby was getting really hungry, I had not slept since I went into labour, I didn't know how to put my boobs away, my vagina was sore from sitting on it while nursing constantly, I was kinda losing my mind."

This is a picture of me 3 days postpartum. I was so raw and so open, I was a fucking mess. I loved my baby, I missed...

Posted by Danielle Haines on Saturday, 12 September 2015


Haines said one of her seven sisters, Sarah, had come over that day to bring her some dinner.

Haines continued: "Sarah took this picture of me. She walked in with food and said, 'Hi! How are you?' I said, 'I'm a mess.' We talked, she listened.

"She said, 'I've been right where you are'. It helped to know she went crazy once too. Then she said, 'I know this might sound crazy but do you have a camera? You look so raw and so beautiful.'

"I'm so glad she took this picture. She was just planning to drop off food. She ended up staying for much longer. I needed her. She knew it. This is real postpartum mamas. Those of you who have done it before... will you share what your immediate PP felt like?

"I had a magical postpartum. It wasn't easy but I was so supported and fed and reminded that the mothers before me had been through this part of motherhood, and that I'd get through it just fine too."

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Within five days of being uploaded on 12 September, Haines' post had been shared more than 19,000 times.

The post encouraged other mums to open up about their own postpartum experiences, many of whom related to Haines' post.

One mother wrote: "Totally how I felt in my experiences, too.

"So many rushes out of your body so fast (a human, placenta, fluid, blood) and birthing is so intense and wild in itself and then there you are, just blown wide open, forever changed, with this person that was inside now outside and in your care round-the-clock.

"It kicked my ass both times. And it is so raw and so precious."

Another mother commented: "Thank you for sharing this part of motherhood. Raw open and beautifully crazy. I didn't even recognize myself pp. Then I had to get to know not only my baby but myself."

Other mums decided to upload their own photos of their postpartum selves.

One mum added: "This was probably two days postpartum. I was emotional, in a lot of pain, my hair was a mess, and tired. I told [my partner] to take a picture of me in 'all of my postpartum glory'."

Haines replied to her photo, saying: "So beautiful right? Such an amazing time. I wasn't depressed I was crazy. There's a big difference. Crazy in love, crazy angry, mad sleep deprived and all so happy at the same time."

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