“With each of my children, I had some level of postpartum depression
,” she told Dr. Oz and the studio audience. “It was a very challenging, emotional time for me because I felt like I was not living up to my potential as a parent or as an entrepreneur and executive.”
Postpartum depression is a devastating condition with symptoms that vary widely, but often include irritability, suicidal ideation, anxiety, full-blown panic attacks and an eerie feeling of detachment. And although it’s unclear if Trump was ever diagnosed with PPD by a doctor, it’s something no one should ever have to experience, and Trump absolutely has the sympathy of many.
But some are concerned that the timing of Trump’s discussion — what with her father’s approval ratings so low
— felt somehow disingenuous. In Slate
this week, Ruth Graham posited that Trump’s PPD reveal “felt like evidence of Ivanka’s greatest talent: recognizing when a topic is innocuous enough that she can safely use it to build her personal brand at no risk to her reputation.” Was it a calculated decision as the current administration tries to come up with a more sympathetic, relatable face of the Trump family during a time of massive media criticism?
More: Chrissy Teigen Opens Up About Her Postpartum Depression
Plenty of celebrities — Chrissy Teigen, Drew Barrymore and Adele to name a few — have come forward to discuss their postpartum depression, and all of them were under medical care after their diagnoses. All of this candid talk on PPD is crucial because it continues to help crush the stigma attached to moms who are depressed and having trouble bonding with their newborns. We need celebrities to speak out, and that includes Ivanka Trump. But the PPD discussion does feel somewhat surprising given Trump’s silence on many other issues women face — including the prenatal care that’s currently on the GOP’s chopping block. Maybe she’s turning over a new leaf?
The Dr. Oz conversation didn’t stick to PPD, either; in the interview, Trump remarked that despite the fact that she has an office at the White House, she doesn’t think it’s her role to be a “voice of moderation” for her father.
Trying to decipher who, exactly, Ivanka Trump is can be confusing, that’s for sure. She works at the White House, but she told Fox & Friends “I try to stay out of politics.” And she told the Republican National Convention, “Like many of my fellow millennials, I do not consider myself categorically Republican or Democrat.” In other words, she’s whatever you want her to be, all the time?