Postpartum depression doesn’t just affect new moms. In fact, the condition majorly impacted Adam Busby, & we learned exclusively how difficult his struggle was.
While many celeb moms, like Chrissy Teigen and Hayden Panettiere, have been super open about their struggles with postpartum depression, the truth is, mothers aren’t the only ones who suffer from the sometimes-debilitating condition. While men don’t often speak out about their own struggles with PPD, according to Web MD, one in 10 dads suffer from it. Adam Busby, of the hit TLC show OutDaughtered, is one of those fathers. Speaking to HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY, Adam bravely opened up about his PPD and shared what it was like to have this condition while caring for six young daughters. Click here to see adorable pics of celeb dads with their kids.
“[Paternal postnatal depression] was something that slowly got worse and worse over the course of months,” Adam told us, recalling the period of time after his five daughters: Parker, Riley, Olivia, Hazel, and Ava, were born all at once two years ago. “I had a major shock to my system from the initial surprise of finding out we were having five babies at once, to the enormous responsibility that I knew that I would be responsible for.” Adam and his wife, Danielle Busby, already had one daughter, Blayke, 6, when they found out they’d be expecting the quints, who are now two. To say the least, Adam immediately began to feel overwhelmed.
“The enormity of it all just got to me. I slowly started to withdraw from friendships and things that I loved doing,” the father-of-six shared. “I felt like all that I could and wanted to focus on was taking care of my family and being with the seven girls in my house. Nothing in my life outside of my home really mattered as much anymore.” The Busby’s journey of having America’s only all-female quintuplet has been documented on their reality show, which premiered in May 2016. The series finished up their third season earlier this year, and Adam revealed to the world he had suffered from PPD this past August.
— Adam Busby (@AdamBuzz) October 19, 2017
“I gave every ounce to my family and I poured that into my family and my girls. I felt like at the end of the day, there was just nothing left,” the reality star told us. “I know that there’s this stigma out there because I’m guilty of it. I held onto it for two years and I tried to fix it myself and I tried to deny it and I tried to run from it, and all that did was make it worse because I held it in.” So why did Adam decide to finally speak his truth? His goal is to help other parents out there. “As I started to learn more about my postpartum depression, I realized that all of the preconceived notions that I have had about it were all wrong. I always thought that people with depression are weak, and that’s not the case,” he said.
“People see me on social media and they think I’m this Superdad that can take care of all these kids by myself and do all these great things, but I’m still struggling with this,” Adam added. “And if this dad that looks like Superdad on TV, is not afraid to come out and say he’s vulnerable and he’s real, maybe that would encourage other people to come out and say, ‘Hey that’s me too’ and possibly take the steps to get help.” Adam continued, “We all have a story to tell and this is mine. This has already help countless people out there and that makes it all worth it.”
However, not everyone has been encouraging of Adam’s honesty. “I’ve gotten a lot of criticism since coming out with this from people that just don’t understand, and that just adds to the stigma,” he shared. “People that don’t suffer from depression can think logically about it and say, ‘You should just put yourself into perspective and think about all the good stuff you have going for you.’ Yeah, we have a lot of great stuff going on, but whenever you struggle with depression, your mind just doesn’t let you go that way.” Adam believes that people are “naturally skeptical and critical” when they don’t fully understand something, but he also believes education is the best way to beat the stigma. “This is something that still isn’t widely known or talked about, and until it is, the stigma will remain,” he explained.
Danielle ended up helping her husband with his PPD by constantly supporting and encouraging him. “I think the biggest part of helping Adam with his depression is, first and foremost, praying about it and praying for how I am supposed to best be supporting him through this time,” Danielle revealed to us. “I think reassurance, encouragement, and time management help a ton. Someone who is going through depression, like Adam, may lose site of their ability to do something — even the things they know they are good at.”
Although recovery can be a slow process, Adam feels he’s making major progress with Danielle and their six daughters by his side. In fact, despite having their hands full with five girls in their “terrible twos,” Danielle and Adam are dedicated to helping their children “Learn Through Play” every single day — and it’s a practice they all enjoy engaging in together. In fact, the Busby fam has partnered with the leading educational toy company, Learning Resources, to help other families learn how they can incorporate education in their children’s lives through everyday play.
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — are you surprised that men too can get postpartum depression? Do you hope OutDaughtered returns to TLC for another season?