Bryce discovered that she was pregnant when she was 25-years-old. Now, 15 years later, Theo and Bryce are still together.
In those days, she was newly married to her husband Seth Gabel and she reveled in their firstborn.
That said, things took a dramatic and heartbreaking turn after he was born as the Jurassic Park: Dominion actress later recalled how she battled debilitating post-partum depression.
Bryce wrote a candid essay about her own experience. She hoped that other people would be able to benefit from her story and help themselves.
She said that everything was fine until Theo was born and, “I felt nothing,” she wrote. While everyone else cooed over her newborn, Bryce said, ” I had no impression of my own.”
After returning home from the hospital, things got worse. And she soon became very lonely and scared.
Bryce had some moments when breastfeeding was a challenge. The pain was so bad once, she felt like she was going to die.
“For the sake of those around me, including my son, I pretended,” Bryce revealed. “But when I began to cry again in the second week, I let loose in the privacy of the bathroom, flooding tears as they escaped uncontrollably.”
When she went for a checkup, the midwife gave her a list of things to rate on a scale from 1-5 so that she could have better insight into her emotional state. Her answers were all perfect but it took months for her to even admit to herself her true feelings, despite the daily ‘shower breakdowns.’
Bryce said her physical appearance was making her depressed and in a bad state of mind.
“Before Theo was born, I had been in good humor about my 80-pound weight gain, but now that I have a baby I’m mortified by it,” she added. “I felt like I was failing at breast-feeding. My house was a mess. I believed that I was a terrible dog owner. I was certain that I was an awful actress; I dreaded the film shoot only a few weeks after the birth because my concentration is low.”
“And the worst part was, I absolutely knew in the back of my head that I was a terrible mother—not an unreasonable one, bad like not doing what you promised. Because the truth was, every time I looked at my son, I wanted to disappear.”
Bryce ignored her problems for more than a year and a half before finally listening to her friends.
With a combination of homeopathic treatments, therapy and time, Bryce began to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
She said, “I just got this feeling, like everything was going to be okay.” She went on to say, “My depression lifted and that had me thinking that we might actually have a chance here.”
“That day, I saw one of my closest friends. As soon as we made eye contact we hugged and looked at each other without skipping a beat. He said ‘It’s like you’ve been abducted for a year and a half by the Borg. You are back now.’ I smiled.”
Bryce’s battle with postpartum depression was difficult but she decided to share her story. “Postpartum depression is hard to describe,” she wrote. “The way the body and mind, and spirit crack and crumble in the wake of what most believe should be a celebratory time.”
Bryce said: “I wish I had never endured postpartum depression? Absolutely. But to deny the experience is to deny who I am. I still mourn the loss of what could have been, but I also feel deep gratitude for those who stood by me, for the lesson that we must never be afraid to ask for help, and for the feeling of summer that remains.”