How many posts am I going to have to write? How many letters to the editor are people going to have to send? How many advocates shouting down the postpartum depression stigma will it take?

AOL News, we have a MAJOR problem. Since you have the word “news” in your name, one might think you are serious journalists. Or at the very least, semi-serious journalists. Now it is clear to me that some of you shouldn’t be writing at all.

In your story on the recent murder of two boys in South Carolina you quote an “expert” who I find unbelievably offensive. I am outraged.

“Most women who suffer depression after their children are born are suffering from post-how-did-I-get-stuck-with-this-kid, this body, this life? They may be depressed, but it is their situation and their psychopathic personality that brings them to kill their children, and not some chemical malfunction.”

Postpartum depression is a “crock”? “Most women who suffer depression after their children are born…?” What? Are you serious? Who the heck are you Pat Brown, and exactly what expertise do you have on postpartum depression? Based on that comment, you can’t possibly know the first thing about it. You can’t possibly know an eighth of the first thing about it. And AOL? You’re complicit in this spreading this awfulness. How dare you not check with real experts, or provide a balanced view? Does the writer of this story, David Lohr, have an editor?

Honestly, I could throw up.

Do you know how many women suffer in silence because of bullshit stories like these? How many women can’t reach out for help for a REAL illness because of this kind of ignorance? I wonder how many new families you have negatively impacted today by this completely mean-spirited and off the mark story?

First, not every mother who harms her child has PPD, or psychosis for that matter. Most don’t.

Second, we have no way of knowing why this mother did what she did, except for her own comments.

And third …

Third, you suck.

Shame on you.



Update at 11:15: So it took about an hour and a half from when this was first posted at 9:43am. An editor has now removed the quote I cited above, which I assure you did exist, and has added the following statement:

Editors’ Note: This story was revised to remove opinions from a criminal profiler about postpartum depression. We’ll be updating the story with more background and context on this tragic story later today.

Not enough for me AOL. I would like an apology to all mothers.

Update at 11:56: Just so I’m making sure I’m not being misunderstood, I’m not commenting on the case of Duley. What she has admitted to is awful, and I have no idea what led her to it. What concerns me is that AOL would allow a blanket statement about PPD — and it was a blanket statement — that is stigmatizing and uninformed to be made. Even if this mother committed infanticide in part because she was psychotic or had some other clinical mental illness, that doesn’t justify saying that women who have depression after childbirth are just disappointed in their new lives. It doesn’t.