The Tragic Story of Deasia Watkins: Understanding Postpartum Psychosis

joy and bliss, but for some mothers, the experience can be overwhelming and even tragic. One such story is that of Deasia Watkins, whose battle with postpartum psychosis ended in a devastating outcome. Postpartum psychosis affects 1-2 women per 1000 births and yet it remains largely misunderstood. In this blog post, we will explore the tragic story of Deasia Watkins in order to shed light on this condition and help prevent future tragedies.

Who was Deasia Watkins?

Deasia Watkins was a 20-year-old mother from Ohio who struggled with mental illness. She gave birth to her daughter, Jayniah in November of 2014 and shortly after, began experiencing severe postpartum depression. However, her condition soon escalated into something much more severe – postpartum psychosis.

Watkins had a history of mental illness and had been hospitalized several times prior to giving birth. In the weeks leading up to her daughter’s death, she became increasingly unstable and erratic in behavior.

On March 16th, 2015, just four months after giving birth to Jayniah, Watkins committed an unspeakable act of violence against her own child that ultimately led to her death. She was charged with aggravated murder but pled not guilty by reason of insanity.

The tragic story of Deasia Watkins serves as a reminder that postpartum psychosis can have devastating consequences if left untreated. 

What is postpartum psychosis?

Postpartum psychosis is a rare, but severe mental illness that affects some women after they give birth. It is estimated to occur in around 1-2 out of every 1000 deliveries and usually develops within the first few weeks following childbirth. Postpartum psychosis differs from postpartum depression in terms of severity and symptoms.

The symptoms of postpartum psychosis can include hallucinations, delusions, confusion, disorientation, paranoia, and even suicidal or homicidal thoughts. Women with this condition may also experience rapid mood swings between extreme highs and lows. They often have trouble sleeping or eating properly and may exhibit signs of anxiety or agitation.

While the exact cause of postpartum psychosis remains hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy and childbirth as well as a history of mental illness. Treatment for this condition typically involves hospitalization for observation and medication management along with therapy sessions to address underlying issues.

It’s important for new mothers to understand the signs and symptoms associated with postpartum psychosis so that they can seek help if necessary. Early intervention is key in managing this serious condition before it causes harm to both mother and child.

The events leading up to Deasia Watkins’ death

Deasia Watkins was a 20-year-old mother who suffered from postpartum psychosis. began with her history of mental illness, which included bipolar disorder and depression.

After giving birth in early March of 2015, Deasia started showing signs of postpartum psychosis. Her family noticed that she was not acting like herself and was becoming increasingly agitated. She also stopped taking her medication for bipolar disorder.

On the day of the incident, Deasia’s aunt found her holding her baby girl over a burning gas stove. The infant had burns on more than half of her body and later died at the hospital due to smoke inhalation.

Following the incident, Deasia was arrested and charged with aggravated murder while she underwent psychiatric evaluation. severe delusions at the time of the crime.

The tragedy highlights how important it is for new mothers to receive proper medical attention during their postpartum period. or undiagnosed.

How can postpartum psychosis be prevented?

 of postpartum psychosis. This may include delusions, hallucinations, confusion or disorientation.

 experiencing postpartum psychosis, it’s essential to seek professional help immediately. Early intervention is crucial in preventing the development of more severe symptoms and reducing the likelihood of harm to both mother and baby.

While we cannot prevent every case of postpartum psychosis from occurring; by taking care of ourselves throughout pregnancy and seeking help early on if necessary – we can greatly improve our chances of avoiding this devastating condition.


have tragic consequences for new mothers and their families. The story of Deasia Watkins, who struggled with this condition and ultimately took the life of her 3-month-old daughter, highlights the urgent need for better education, awareness, and support for women experiencing postpartum mental health challenges.

It’s important to recognize that postpartum psychosis is not a personal failure or weakness. It’s a medical issue that requires prompt intervention and treatment from healthcare professionals. With early diagnosis and appropriate care, many women with postpartum psychosis can recover fully.

Preventing postpartum psychosis involves several strategies such as destigmatizing seeking help for mental health issues during pregnancy and after delivery; providing comprehensive screening services; offering evidence-based interventions such as therapy or medication when necessary; providing adequate social support in all areas (physical/ emotional/ financial); ensuring follow-up appointments to monitor progress.

mother has access to high-quality perinatal care throughout pregnancy and beyond. By recognizing the signs of postpartum psychosis early on, we can improve outcomes for both mothers struggling with this illness and their children.

Let us continue advocating for resources dedicated towards maternal mental well-being so that no other woman will have to go through what Deasia Watkins went through. Maternal mental wellness should be everyone’s priority!

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