According to the American Psychological Organization, 41% of women struggle with post-partum depression. The condition is characterized by intense feelings of sadness, despair, anxiety and irritability after giving birth; and the symptoms are long lasting and may occur anytime within the first year.
It sometimes even affects a woman’s ability to function, and without medical attention, the symptoms may be sever. However, in the case of a 30-year-old British mother, her depression may have caused her to kill herself and her baby.
Charlotte Tiana vanished from the Bristol Maternity Hospital in the United Kingdom after giving birth to her daughter, Zaani. Authorities later found Charlotte’s body at the bottom of a cliff and her newborn’s body was discovered nearby. Although there is speculation that Charlotte had issues with depression in the past, her boyfriend mentioned that she had been treated for schizophrenia and was severely sleep deprived. When Charlotte exited the hospital she was only wearing slippers and no coat.
“A member of the public was walking along the cliff edge along the cliff path and noticed those distinctive white slippers, similar to the ones Charlotte was wearing, and the multi coloured blanket, which was also distinctive.
‘Unfortunately that led us to finding the body of a woman which has since been formally identified as Charlotte Bevan.
‘The search of the cliff face continued throughout the night. We were very keen to locate Zaani Tiana who was Charlotte’s newborn daughter.
‘I regret to inform you that a short time ago on the cliff face, close to Charlotte, the body of a small baby girl has been found.
‘No formal identification has so far taken place but we anticipate that it is going to be Charlotte’s daughter.
‘This is a dreadful, awful, frustrating business and our thoughts are with the family at this time.
‘We will be conducting an investigation on behalf of the coroner. At the moment we are not treating either death as suspicious.’
Currently, the University Hospitals Bristol Trust is reviewing the care of Charlotte and her baby. A Trust spokesman said, ‘We are deeply saddened to hear the news of the death of Charlotte Bevan and offer our heartfelt condolences to her family. While it remains unclear as to how Charlotte died, we will be conducting a thorough review of the care Charlotte and her baby received to see if there was anything we could have done to prevent this tragic and unexplained death.”
Charlotte’s mother, Rachel Fortune, made a statement after the tragedy.
She said: ‘My beautiful daughter and grand-daughter are now at peace.The family would like to thank all the friends of Pascal, Charlotte and Zaani, some of whom we have only met today. We would also like to say thank you for all the messages from everyone. We wish to thank all the hospital staff at St Michael’s and the mental healthcare team, past and present. The response and support from the public has been overwhelming and we would like to thank you all. We would also like to give our thanks to Avon and Somerset police and the volunteers from Avon Search and Rescue. We thank the press for their help and ask that we now be left in peace to grieve.”