John Legend on supporting wife during battle with postpartum depression

When John Legend learned that his wife, Chrissy Teigen, had been diagnosed with postpartum depression, he started doing his research.

As a man, “you don’t know internally what it feels like,” Legend told People. “You should read about it and understand what it is and really just be there to help.”

In an essay for Glamour magazine this month, Teigen revealed she had unknowingly been suffering from postpartum depression after the birth of her daughter, Luna, last April. She said that it was only diagnosed recently and that she had begun taking an antidepressant.

As a husband, Legend said, his job was to try to “support her and understand what she was going through and do whatever I could do to help her.”

“I feel like that’s the least I could do,” he said. “You need to be present, and you need to be compassionate. And we’re all learning and trying to figure it out as we go. At least do that and try to figure it out together.”

Teigen wrote in the Glamour essay that on some days it was physically painful to get out of bed and that she would go days without eating.

“I’m glad she wrote about it,” Legend said. “I think it was powerful for her to let a lot of women know they’re not alone, and no matter how much money you have or fame, anybody can feel that. And it’s hard for anybody, no matter how successful you are and how many resources you have.”

Legend said it has only strengthened their marriage.

“It’s a difficult thing to be a new father and for my wife to be a new mother,” he said. Being parents “advances the level of partnership you share. It’s exciting to see how we as a couple grow together and learn how to react to the challenges and the joys.”