Did Ivanka Trump's postpartum depression shape policy perspectives?

Christina Gregg, AOL.com

Ivanka Trump recently revealed an intimate detail of her life in a new interview, opening up about her struggle with postpartum depression.

"It was a very challenging emotional time for me because I felt like I was not living up to my potential as a parent or as an entrepreneur and executive," President Trump's eldest daughter told Dr. Mehmet Oz in a segment airing on Thursday. "I had had such easy pregnancies that in some way, the juxtaposition hit me even harder."

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, postpartum depression affects one in nine women in the United States each year, with common symptoms including anxiety, immense sadness and feelings of hopelessness.

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The 35-year-old mother of three and presidential adviser has been a vocal advocate of paid family leave and other issues involving women in the workforce since assuming her White House role -- begging the question of whether her personal experience with the condition influenced her views on policies affecting mothers.

Before Ivanka Trump gave birth to her first child, Arabella, in 2011, the entrepreneur was seen holding a meeting in Trump Tower reportedly just before her due date. She's reportedly never been one to slow down, and was successful in multiple aspects of business life, from growing her own "Ivanka Trump" fashion brand to appearing on "The Celebrity Apprentice" alongside her father.

Leading up to President Trump's 2015 announcement that he would seek the Republican nomination, Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, were no stranger to backing Democratic candidates. The couple notably raised more than $40,000 for Democrat Cory Booker's Senate campaign in 2013.

Then, a shift. Ivanka -- the once "liberal hope" of the Trump dynasty -- has been criticized for having "white-washed" her father's past (and present) of sexist, xenophobic behavior and rhetoric. Even after she assumed her White House advisory role -- reportedly started advocating for the Paris climate agreement and LGBT rights behind closed doors and apprenticeship programs, gender pay equality and paid family leave during press conferences -- the word "Complicit" was quickly attached to her identity by those who disapproved of her Oval Office presence.

Still, one can't help but recall her speech at the 2016 Republican National Convention, in which she was described by many as speaking, well, like a Democrat.

"As a mother myself, of three young children, I know how hard it is to work while raising a family," the Trump daughter said. "And I also know that I'm far more fortunate than most. American families need relief. Policies that allow women with children to thrive should not be novelties, they should be the norm."

Having added Joseph, 3, and Theodore, 1, to her pack, Ivanka Trump unabashedly shares intimate images of her family life with the public -- boosting her image as a woman who is outwardly invested in family issues and privately dedicated to her husband and children. 

Now, knowing what we know about Ivanka's struggle with postpartum depression, it seems possible that her personal experiences during pregnancy, childbirth and after might have had an impact, significant or otherwise, on how she views policy issues that particularly pertain to the mothers, daughters and working women of America.

Vogue's Michelle Ruiz criticized Ivanka's announcement on Thursday, saying it felt both "terribly timed and mighty tone-deaf" given the context of the GOP's latest attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare with the Graham-Cassidy bill.

"While her bouts with postpartum are safely in the past, and she presumably had access to treatment, many mothers in America have no such luck—or are in peril of losing it at the emphatic order of the very White House under which Ivanka serves," Ruiz writes. "Among Graham-Cassidy’s dark arts, it may once again allow insurers to deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. Note to Ivanka: Postpartum depression has traditionally been one of them."

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