Antonia Fox woke up in a police cell – and still cannot recall anything about the night she assaulted her partner Simon Taylor
A mum who cracked under the pressure of post-natal depression launched a frenzied attack on her partner using a knife and a hammer.
Antonia Fox woke up in a police cell – and still cannot recall anything about the night she assaulted Simon Taylor, 28.
The 26-year-old mum was lucky to be spared jail by an understanding magistrate.
Antonia told the Sunday People: “I’m quite a strong person but I didn’t realise the pressure I was under and eventually I cracked because I didn’t ask for help.
“I had mentioned to a health visitor I was feeling down but I think she failed to spot the signs I was seriously depressed rather than just having a bad day.
“I didn’t ask for help because I was frightened – terrified they would take my kids off me.”
Antonia is one of 70,000 women who suffer from post-natal depression every year.
But doctors believe that the figures could be much higher as women are too scared to ask for help – just like Antonia.
She had her first son Elliott six years ago.
But she was devastated when her second son, Sebastian, was born in 2012 with Gastroschisis – a condition where a baby’s intestines are stuck on the outside of their belly.
She said: “He was so poorly that he couldn’t come home for months.
“I’d lost a son previously at 22 weeks pregnant and all those emotions came rushing back and there was a lot of stress and depression.
“I didn’t ask for any help and plodded along – Simon and I were bickering and arguing.”
Then, when Sebastian was just four months olds, Antonia found out she was pregnant again.
She added: “What I didn’t realise was that Simon was also struggling. We’d gone from being incredibly happy to having a poorly baby and another on the way.
“It was a lot to deal with but neither of us actually said we were both suffering. I felt lost.”
Antonia, from Bridlington, E Yorks, put on five stone during her pregnancy and became a bit of a hermit sitting at home all day feeling depressed.
Her depression worsened and weeks after her third son Harry was born in August 2013, she attacked Simon.
She said: “I’d been on a night out because it was a friend’s birthday. I felt fat and hideous and felt like I didn’t fit in.
“I knew I was pretty drunk. I went home and Simon was upset because it was half past four in the morning.
“We started arguing and I don’t remember anything else except I woke up in a police cell and thought, ‘Where am I, why am I here?’
“I don’t remember a thing and I’ve spoken to a counsellor since who has said I have blocked the incident out.”
Antonia later found out that she had pulled a steak knife on Simon but he snapped it in half while trying to get it away from her. She also attacked him with a hammer – but missed.
She was given 12 months’ community service and ordered to pay costs.
The magistrate was lenient on Antonia because she had taken steps to enrol herself in parenting and domestic abuse courses.
The couple split briefly for two months after the case. Arcade worker Simon said: “It was a difficult time but I took her back on the condition that she got the help she needed and she assured me nothing like that would ever happen again.”
The pair are due to marry in July – and Antonia is now 20 weeks pregnant.
She added: “We’re stronger than ever now. I’m prepared for the pregnancy this time and know what to look out for. ”