Postpartum! Postpartum! Postpartum!

Word parts put together to make the word postpartum

Go to any stock photo place. Deposit Photos, Adobe Stock, Shutterstock, whatever. Search for the word “postpartum” and take a look at the results. How many of them show a woman looking sad, crying, angry, frazzled, or otherwise despondent. How many results came up that were yellow alert signs saying things like “postpartum depression warning signs” or “Postpartum depression ahead!” Probably more than half!

The problem isn’t limited to stock photo sites, it’s far more widespread than that. For many people, the very word “postpartum” has become synonymous with “depression”, but that is NOT what it means.

Let’s break it down:

This is a suffix that simply means “after”, so you know that the word will describe whatever comes after the other half of the word.

This word part means “giving birth”. In fact, another term for birth is “parturition”, and the Spanish word for midwife is “partera” etc.

Put it all together and you have a descriptive word. An adjective that can describe all kinds of things that happen after a baby is born:

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