Serena Williams' emotional postpartum struggle

Best known for winning 23 Grand Slams, a clothing line and being one of the best athletes in the world, Serena Williams has opened up about something different.

Writing candidly to her Instagram followers, the mum admits she is suffering from “postpartum emotions”, describing the struggle to maintain motherhood and her tennis career.

“Last week was not easy for me. Not only was I accepting some tough personal stuff, but I just was in a funk,” she wrote. “Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mum.”

Serena Williams opens up about postnatal “emotions” after a tough week caring for her daughter Alexis. Source: Instagram/SerenaWilliams

The mum — who welcomed daughter Alexis in September last year with husband Alexis Ohanian — went on to explain she had read several articles that said postpartum emotions can last up to three years if not properly dealt with.

“I like communication best,” she went on, revealing to fans how she’s been handling her feelings since becoming a mum. “Talking things through with my mum, my sisters, my friends let me know that my feelings are totally normal.”

“It’s totally normal to feel like I’m not doing enough for my baby.” 


Australian statistics show that 1 in 5 women will suffer with postnatal depression after the birth of their child, which is likely why Serena’s post has resonated with followers.

Receiving more than 346,000 likes and 7,300 comments, fans reassured the athlete with their similar experiences.

Serena please don’t feel guilty, you are not doing anything wrong,” read one comment, while others said they could “relate” to her honest post. 

The mum was inundated with support from fans, many of them other mums thanking her for being “relatable”. Source: Instagram/SerenaWilliams

“I so relate to you! I guess all working mothers go through the same, but keep strong,” another said. “You will see it is going to get better and it is important you accept that you are not only a mother but also a great player, wife, lover, sister… and you need to have time for yourself too.”

Symptoms of PND usually reveal themselves within the first two months after giving birth and can last for months to years, according to Health Direct. 

If you’re experiencing feelings of anxiety or depression contact Beyond Blue, Batyr or PANDA for support.

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