AIBU to be very hurt and upset or do you think the same?

(68 Posts)
sj2008 Sat 02-Feb-13 22:26:38

I suppose this may be better suited to the mental health board but I'd like a broader perspective...I am currently 27 weeks pregnant with my second child. I have fairly severe mental health problems with a diagnosis of bipolar and a personality disorder, I have had many admissions to a psychiatric hospital over the last 8 years. My husband and I have always wanted a big family but put off a second child until I managed 12 months in full time employment and to come off all medication. Fortunately I achieved that level of stability and so far have been healthy in pregnancy.

However, a friend of mine on hearing our news told me she was disgusted that we would consider having more children as she thinks I am not fit to be a mother. She said as there is a chance I will leave now two children motherless it is utterly selfish.

I am totally gutted by this. Although I am close to this lady, she never sees me with my son. I have done countless things to be ashamed of when ill but am so proud of my son and how we parent him. He is happy, healthy and loved and has all the opportunities in our power to provide. He also is now lucky enough to have a sibling on the way and I know he will be a wonderful brother. Aibu to be upset by my friend's views or are there many out there who would write me off as a mum because of my diagnosis and behaviour when ill? X

MyCannyBairn Sat 02-Feb-13 22:32:25

Your friend is not your friend.

AgentZigzag Sat 02-Feb-13 22:32:45

She's no friend of yours.

There are tons of parents who bring up happy, healthy, successful children, laughing in the face of their mental health problems.

You've learned to live and cope with yours.

Fuck the friend off, and congratulations on your not far off DC2 smile

manicbmc Sat 02-Feb-13 22:34:29

Get a new friend.

You have done brilliantly. I know plenty of people in the same boat as you who are bloody excellent parents and I wish I was half as good as they are.

Good luck with your new addition, hope the weeks fly by. smile

JamesBexleySpeed Sat 02-Feb-13 22:35:10

I'm not an expert, and I think you probably shouldn't have posted on AIBU, but she isn't your friend, sorry. That is sheer nastyness.
It sounds like you are doing wonderfully. You should distance yourself from her straight away, you don't need that sort of friend.

auntmargaret Sat 02-Feb-13 22:35:13

Gosh, your "friend" sounds nasty. You sound like you're doing really well. Congratulations on your pregnancy, keep doing what you're doing, and being a good mum. How do you know her? Is it possible she has any MH issues? I'd steer clear of her for a while ( or maybe longer,tbh) You need to be with positive people at the moment.

Clandy Sat 02-Feb-13 22:36:30

This has made me so cross on your behalf! Sounds like you have been very sensible about making the choice for dc2! Congratulations I'm sure you will be just as proud of how you parent dc2 as you are of yourselves now.
She doesn't sound like much if a friend. Uanbu!!
Congratulations on dc2 grin

Lovelygoldboots Sat 02-Feb-13 22:36:50

I think you should cut this woman out of your life tbh. A dreadful thing to say. Congratulations on you pregnancy. It is a wonderful time in your life when you have two little ones. You enjoy it. Take those babies out to the park, the zoo, picnics. You will see your lovely little family and realize what a terrible thing that woman said to you was good luck op youll do just fine

She's not a friend at all, very narrow minded and nasty also. I'm on pregnancy number 3 after years of severe depression and off medication and so proud of myself anyone who made me feel bad about having my kids would be out of my life in a second .

HollyBerryBush Sat 02-Feb-13 22:39:01

Is it inherited? I have read some studies that suggest it is. That might colour her view that inherited conditions shouldnt be passed on if there is a danger that quality of life could be impaired.

life however, is full of 'what ifs' - what if she left motherless children? she might get cancer, be hit by a bus, be caught in a drive by shooting - life is just full of what ifs.

Your friend probably isnt your friend. Only you know if her comments were intended to be calculating oand spiteful or whether they were born out of concern

myroomisatip Sat 02-Feb-13 22:40:39

Well firstly, I just want to say that I think your friend has been very judgemental. You do seem to be a very loving and caring parent.

I can only tell you that I had no MH issues when I had my first child but neither did I realise that I was involved in an abusive relationship. The abuse escalated over the years and the end result was me having a breakdown and two messed up kids.

What I am trying to say is that the future is not etched in stone. smile We can only endeavour to do our best. You are very lucky to have the support, understanding and love of your partner, something I never had!

We all have our cross to bear, we just dont need other people hanging on to it making it heavier! smile Just concentrate on your lovely family and dont give too much credence to other peoples opinions. I am sure you will be just fine smile

And after all..... if you do have any problems there is always Mumsnet smile

MissAnglia Sat 02-Feb-13 22:41:10

Although she hasn't been nice, I think many people don't really understand mental illness, and she is probably concerned about you without really being aware of all the facts.

You sound as though you are doing brilliantly; it's not easy to overcome this type of illness, and the stigma attached to it also. Try to view her comments as ignorant, rather than nasty and don't let it bother you. Keep on doing what you've been doing and you'll be fine. Well done, and many congratulations on your pregnancy smile

AreYouADurtBirdOrALadyBird Sat 02-Feb-13 22:42:44

She sounds very judgmental and ill-informed about mental illness. Ignore her,she is not a good friend.

Well done OP,wishing you a healthy pregnancy.
(((((((Unmumsnetty hugs)))))))

sj2008 Sat 02-Feb-13 22:44:07

Thank you so much for your support and well wishes. I have known this lady for 20 years through a sport we are both heavily involved in. She has done a great deal for me in the past and so this is why her comments are perhaps more upsetting. I just wonder if I had detailed some of the more disturbing/troubled things that have happened in the past, that maybe stand out in her mind,whether people would be more inclined to judge. I really hope I can stay well and feel so lucky that I am to be a mum again!

Tell your "friend" to fuck off and when she gets their to fuck off some more.

I have a lovely friend who is also bi-polar and she is so lovely with my children, she has other friends who won't even trust her to be alone in a room with their children when they are in the next room.

Well done for getting off your meds - from hearing about my friends struggles trying to do the same you should be proud of yourself. The nature of your illness means you are probably going to have days that are better or worse than others - but we all do.

Just to resurect a phrase a read on here from a while back she sounds like a terriblecunt mum.

Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy! x

AreYouADurtBirdOrALadyBird Sat 02-Feb-13 22:46:31

It doesn't matter op,you were ill at the time. You are doing better now. Don't let her comments make you dwell on the past.

AgentZigzag Sat 02-Feb-13 22:46:52

Is it possible for a friend Holly, out of concern for your future DNA legacy, to actually say 'I think you're such a crap person, you should choose not to reproduce', and mean it in a caring way?

I would find it pretty damning.

She doesn't sound very supportive at all. A friend would not make such critical judgements and then say it to you!

Congratulations on your pregnancy and keep her at arms length for a while- she is not going to help your MH.


HollyBerryBush Sat 02-Feb-13 22:48:58

I just wonder if I had detailed some of the more disturbing/troubled things that have happened in the past, that maybe stand out in her mind

I think that's you answer Op - she knows your history. I'd say it's ill judged concern.

RarelyAGobshite Sat 02-Feb-13 22:49:32

What a nasty bitch she sounds.

I have a friend with mh issues (bipolar included) and she is one of the best mums I know.

Your 'friend' is being very judgemental, narrow minded, uneducated, rude and heartless.

You will get lots of care and support as a mh sufferer being pg and beyond, and quite frankly it's not her place or business to reel off such venom. You wasn't asking her permission to have more children.

Wishing you and your dh lots of happiness and a healthy baby.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PeachActiviaMinge Sat 02-Feb-13 22:52:30

Our past doesn't define the people we are sweetheart its called the past for a reason. I also suffer from various mental health issues I've done many things I am ashamed of not one of them could make me a bad parent. I'm 29 weeks pregnant and coming off the anti-depressents was scary as hell but we both know that it'll be worth it in the end.

You're building a future no-one knows what that holds for any of us we can only do our best to make it count and not repeat the mistakes we have made in the past.

HollyBerryBush Sat 02-Feb-13 22:52:58

zigzag people are allowed to have opinions, whether they should vocalise them is debatable though.

I know a family with a congenital heart complaint. Six children knowing each one will have to have open heart surgery at some point, repeatedly - I wouldnt vocalise my thoughts, but I don't think I would have made the choice to keep having children if it were me. But I'm a bit of a wuss and don't like seeing my children in pain. But the mother of the six children made choices I wouldnt personally make.

flippingflup Sat 02-Feb-13 22:53:49

Keep away from her, you don't need that negativity in your life! Sounds like you are doing amazingly, well done. Distance yourself from her. Have you told your partner what she has said?

sj2008 Sat 02-Feb-13 22:57:29

There is quite strong evidence that genetics do impact upon the likelihood of developing bipolar but I suppose that is the case with lots of illnesses and I like to think that if my son ever does have to face that, no one will be better informed to help him than us. I hope my friends comments were out of concern for me and my children but it doesn't change how much it hurts to hear someone say you shouldn't have children. As I'm sure most can relate to, it feels overwhelmingly the most significant thing in life. It is upsetting to think people who care about you consider you unfit to do it.

pigletmania Sat 02-Feb-13 22:58:33

I would sre distance myself from her she does not sound like a good friend even though you have known her a long time

AgentZigzag Sat 02-Feb-13 23:01:41

And it would be totally different if your friend came to you and asked what you thought because she was worried Holly, and that could give an opening to diplomatically say what you generally would worry about yourself.

But telling her outright is unbelievably offensive.

If mental health problems are a disability, that's like saying don't have children if there's a good risk of them inheriting it because having a disability isn't worth the investment for that quality of life.

Which is on the brink of being sinister to me and total bollocks (not saying that about you though Holly, just in case it reads that way grin)

BarredfromhavingStella Sat 02-Feb-13 23:01:53

Your 'friend' is a bitch who you should cut loose.

That is all.

BarredfromhavingStella Sat 02-Feb-13 23:02:09

Your 'friend' is a bitch who you should cut loose.

That is all.

socharlotte Sat 02-Feb-13 23:02:57

Have you attempted suicide before?

BarredfromhavingStella Sat 02-Feb-13 23:03:27

Clearly should only be posted once, must stop using phone to MN confused

leniwhite Sat 02-Feb-13 23:11:56

It seems like perhaps she subconsciously sees you coping so well and either feels she is no longer needed to help, or that you've got strength she wishes she had too. Sometimes people get used to a friendship where the other person relies on them and it helps the way they feel about themselves to the extent that when they are no longer required in that capacity, they feel empty. This, mixed maybe with ingrained views that people struggle to change after she has seen you when ill, might be a recipe for a judgement on her part.

It's not right at all of course, but maybe as she's been there for you, consider giving her some time. Otherwise in her mind everything she thought is validated. If you show her how to be non-judgemental she'll eventually understand grin friends don't always do the right thing after all...

But do whatever is best for you and your family above all.

sj2008 Sat 02-Feb-13 23:12:20

Yes I am ashamed to say I have. I am working hard in therapy twice a week so that I can stay well but deep down I know I cant be sure that I won't become that desperate/psychotic again. My husband and our families understand there are no guarantees either but are there for any parents. Obviously my risk is higher but my level of support is proportionately higher too.

SirBoobAlot Sat 02-Feb-13 23:12:39

This woman is not a friend of yours, nor someone you need to spend another moments thought on. She is a vile individual who has no understanding of mental illness, and will only have a negative impact on your life.

You haven't mentioned which personality disorder you have been diagnosed with, but I have Borderline PD, and we have a thread over in mental health if you'd like to come and join us if relevant smile

Congratulations on your pregnancy. Be happy!

mrsbunnylove Sat 02-Feb-13 23:13:15

she is not your friend.

my mum has a written account of her mental condition from her cpn which states 'manic depressive schizophrenic with paranoid tendencies'. she was hospitalised for a few months for most years between my being four and thirteen, and a few times afterwards. she had fifty years on lithium.

our relationship is virtually non-existent now, but from birth to twenty-eight she was 'my mum' and i loved her dearly. she loved me too, for most of that time. the peculiarities of my mother's case separate us - it doesn't mean this will happen to you and your children.

i've never been hospitalised, though i've had 'second level psychiatric care' ie hypnotherapy to help me cope with the awfulness of my workplace. not my life. not any mh problems (despite what mners have tried to say!). with a truly horrible workplace which, when i told the clinical psychotherapist about it, made her cry.

i don't wish i hadn't been born. i was/am a brilliant (if extreme) mum, and i'm a pretty good and biddable grandma. i was pretty intelligent until the hypnotherapy and i was goodlooking in my youth. i have a beautiful daughter, son in law and grandaughter. i've been employed continuously for nineteen years - though i'm always on edge as it could end any time.

your children don't have to have mental health problems, and if they do, they'll be able to get help. they have as much right to be in the world as anyone else.
i like them. the one you have and the one you have on the way. and i like you as their mum.

you sound a lot nicer than your 'friend'.

quietly drop her.

downloadfestival Sat 02-Feb-13 23:13:43

She was insensitive and unfair for voicing her opinion that way, but it may be that she is just concerned for your dc.

I have MH issues myself, I have one dc but I won't have any more because I don't want to risk the extra pressure of another child as I'm aware that might trigger another episode. Some people can be good parents when they're suffering mild mental ill health - but severe mh issues can warp your thinking and can lead to low energy/motivation/anxiety, which must surely have an effect on the children and partner. I know that my DH had to pick up a lot of slack when I've been ill so it wouldn't be fair on him.

It's brilliant that you've been able to remain stable for twelve months and I hope that you continue to recover smile

SirBoobAlot Sat 02-Feb-13 23:15:45

Don't be ashamed of your illness. You wouldn't be ashamed if it was a different problem with the wiring of your brain, causing a different kind of difficulty. It sounds like you have a really great level of awareness regarding your conditions, and that is one of the biggest struggles for parents with mental illness.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 02-Feb-13 23:19:24

Op I'm really sorry to be so direct and I hope this does not hurt your feelings but, you know those people in life who believe that because they may have helped you out a few times it entitles them to be nasty arse fuckwit cunts and treat you like shit to help them feel superior?

Well this friend of yours,if she worded it as you describe is one of those people.

FromHereToNextTuesday Sat 02-Feb-13 23:25:03

I am in much the same position, with a great many "motherless" comments and sneering looks. Doesn't help that the pregnancy was a direct result of a severe episode, and was in the end unplanned.

Would they say the same of a physical illness you were in remission from? Doubtful. Sod 'em OP, look after yourself and enjoy your pregnancy.

pigletmania Sat 02-Feb-13 23:28:10

Op this woman is no god for you, need people who can support you. Even if this woman was concerned her manner was way out of rider ad nasty. Se knows your in a vulnerable position and s knocks you den lik that. Ength f time you have known her does not make her a good frend, a good friend will be supportive and understanding and sensitive. She is not, I wuld distance yourself from her if she hold such negative views about you. Thats the last thing you need

pigletmania Sat 02-Feb-13 23:29:30

God sorry I pad typing s dreadful tonight

LAlady Sat 02-Feb-13 23:30:47

Not surprised you are hurt & upset. Move forward without her and her ill judged opinions in your life.

You sound a lot more prepared, planned and sorted than we were, or most parents are. Your 'friend' sounds blunt and mean.

On the point about genetics. There is a heritable component to a lot of MH issues. However, it is really not well understood and we are in the infancy of even diagnosing, never mind really understanding the causes of MH issues. Your MH issues do mean your DC have a raised chance of MH issues. They also have stable parents who are together, are trying hard, you have thought about medication in pregnancy, all that lowers their chances. You are right that you are very well placed to support them if they develop issues.

The one thing I would say is try to educate them on the increased risks to them of recreational drug use. It seems to be a trigger for MH issues in those who are already susceptible.

Good luck with the new baby!

BurnThisDiscoDown Sat 02-Feb-13 23:53:05

YANBU. If your friend was concerned she would have offered support and a listening ear. A friend does not make you feel shit during a time in your life when you're already vulnerable.

Please ignore her and enjoy your lovely DC.

socharlotte Sat 02-Feb-13 23:59:56

I think whatever the woman's thoughts were on the matter, she should have kept them to herself.Why do some people have to voice every nasty little thought that enters their head regardless of the consequences?

sj2008 Sun 03-Feb-13 08:40:23

Thank you for your kind responses and those who shared their experiences. As I am not playing sport at the minute it is easy to keep my distance from her. In the future it is inevitable I will see her often but don't think I will ever be able to forget what she said. It is hard as I do have anxieties about the rest of the pregnancy, birth and how I will manage with a newborn and hearing that has heightened those worries.

DIYapprentice Sun 03-Feb-13 08:54:13

YANBU!! - She definitely IBU.

And I speak as someone who has an ex-friend who suffers depression and I believe undiagnosed borderline personality disorder. I believe SHE is doing her son irrepairable harm - but that is because she won't address her illness properly, messes around with her medication levels, and won't consider that she has any undiagnosed conditions. (My DS and I have become a target of her vitriol hence why ex-friend).

YOU have a handle on your illness. Yes, you may have recurring bouts in the future, but you have accepted that, and are doing your absolute best to make sure that your condition doesn't affect your DC.

And in my opinion, you are giving your DS an extra support base by giving him a sibling and potential best friend. (As I watch DS1 and DS2 playing together and humming the Star Wars theme together!!!)

Chiggers Sun 03-Feb-13 09:16:01

Meh, ignore her OP. Maybe she is jealous of the effort you put into being a good mum to your DS and wishes she could be half as good.

When I say that, I mean that you have battled through numerous admissions and ups and downs, with your MH, to be a good mum, so you've done more fighting than a lot of people. It shows you have strength.

2 words for you OP "Get Rid"

Take care

pigletmania Sun 03-Feb-13 10:07:23

Just distance yourself. Even if you do sport be polite and civil than don't have anything else to do with her

pigletmania Sun 03-Feb-13 10:10:22

What she said would be a dealbreaker in a friendship, good friends don't speak like that

cory Sun 03-Feb-13 10:24:03

Do people whose relative have had breast cancer avoid having children, because it is well known that breast cancer has a hereditary element? hmm

Your friend seems to have very outdated ideas of MH issues.

McNewPants2013 Sun 03-Feb-13 10:33:37 sounds like you have a great support around you and a loving partner who will know what to look out for in the event your MH takes a turn for the worst.

pigletmania Sun 03-Feb-13 10:35:19

Even if she dsagrreed with you having more children becase your MH she should not speak to you like that

Erimentha Sun 03-Feb-13 15:20:54

I have no advice, but plenty of empathy for you. My own mother said the same to me when I was pregnant with my 2nd DD. I have bipolar and fibromyalgia and she has very little idea of what either of these actually entails and even less of an idea of what our life is like with it. Ultimately, you want the best for your children and you wouldn't have chosen to try for another baby if you felt it was going to be an issue. You also went about it in the most sensible and responsible way possible and I think that is so commendable. It is what you have, not who you are!

LoopsInHoops Sun 03-Feb-13 15:34:32

I think she was horribly insensitive and cruel in what she said and how she said it but, as the daughter of someone with severe MH issues, I understand how she would be concerned.

In my mother's family, 4/6 siblings had serious MH problems. Out of 17 cousins, 3 were fine (belonged to those w/o MH issues), 2 adopted, 3 in care, 3 raised away from their MI parent, 6 raised in home with MI parent but with incredibly difficult childhood.

I don't know them all now, but most of them have MH problems of their own and ALL (apart from the 3) had terribly traumatic childhoods. I was quite young when my younger sibling was born, but I do remember thinking how irresponsible of my DM it was to have gotten pregnant in the first place. A very different situation though, with no stable home, an abusive criminal father and no support system.

That's not to say, by any stretch of the imagination, that the same will happen for your DCs, at all. But only too often the MI parent struggles with relationships and struggles to provide security for their children. Provided your DH can ensure that security and safety for your DCs, I think your children should be fine.

I wish you all the luck and happiness in the world. It's a hard life for all of us, and you have to make the most of it. As someone else said, you wouldn't be expected to stay childless if you had breast cancer. But you would expect to monitor your situation carefully, and ensure you have a system in place for if things go wrong.

smile xxx

MrsKoala Sun 03-Feb-13 15:35:52

Well done you for achieving what you have. I am bipolar and have done many awful things I am thoroughly ashamed of. when I wanted children some friends said I shouldn't because I was too selfish - ie the manic me, not me all the time. One of these 'friends' went off with my husband when I was manic as he needed a shoulder to cry on so they weren't exactly good friends.

Anyway, I have now been med free for 3 years and have a 5mo ds with new dh. I have never been more stable. Having a goal and someone I love more than anything really helped me not get sucked into the heady feelings of mania. I learned to recognise signs and take care of myself more.

I don't think your friend understands mh issues very well and at best her comments are hurtful and untrue. Good luck, you sound very brave.

Teapot13 Sun 03-Feb-13 15:39:35

I haven't read the whole thread but congratulations on the mental health you have worked to achieve and on your pregnancy. It sounds like you have approached this in a level-headed, highly responsible way. Your friends should be congratulating you as well!

A true friend who was worried about you would offer support when the baby comes -- not say you shouldn't have a baby.

What a revolting human being this bitch friend is. shock

Some posters have highlighted the stigma and ignorance surrounding mh, but whilst that is true (and I've experienced it first hand) there's no excuse for downright overtly hurtful and bitchy comments to a pregnant 'friend'.

Her views are nothing short of eugenicist nazism. What next? Sterilise all those of us with MH difficulties? Then those who are deaf (oooh yes, that can be inherited too doncha know!)? Then those with red hair?...etc etc... shock angry angry

My DH and I both have long-standing mh issues (DH has bi-polar) and I have a long and proud family heritage of mh problems (parents, gps etc) but thankfully noone suggested our DS was anything other than fortunate to have such loving family.

OP- you're doing exceptionally to be so happy, pregnant and stable. Long may it all be well. Ignore the silly twunt, cut her out, and enjoy the rest of your pg.

Oh, and have some thanks by way of congrats on everything.

ReluctantMother Sun 03-Feb-13 16:00:56

Ditch her. She is no friend. DP and I both suffer with mental issues and DP has bipolar disorder. We have a son. We have had to educate some friends on mental health issues, but I would not remain friends with someone who still kept such appalling views.

DontEvenThinkAboutIt Sun 03-Feb-13 16:08:07

I am not surprised you are upset by this comment, it was certainly thoughtless and a bit mean. However, perhaps you should cut your friend some slack as you have known her for such a long time and she has been a good friend to you in the past. Maybe you would feel better if you told her how inappropriate her comments were.
If she used the actual word 'disgusted' rather than implying it, then I would be a lot less forgiving.

You sound like you are a very sensible and together person. Your DS is lucky tohave you as a Mum

fuzzypicklehead Sun 03-Feb-13 16:26:26

Such a high proportion of the population has mental health issues at some point ( rates it at 25% of the population ^each year^), can you imagine if none of them ever reproduced just in case they might leave their children without a parent?

You sound like you're managing really well. It's true that your history will mean a higher risk of AND / PND, but as long as you keep a look out for the early warning signs and make sure you have adequate support in place to deal with any issues, you'll be just fine.

Your "friend" sounds like she needs some education.

Chiggers Sun 03-Feb-13 16:44:00

If you have kids and they end up with MH problems, then I would also say that you would be the best person to go to to talk about those problems and to advise any of your kids about MH issues. Simply because you have been there, battled long and hard to get where you are now AND because you gave birth to them and know a lot about them from bringing them up.

I couldn't imagine a better person to ask advice from than someone who has had MH issues and has become more stable as a result of the sheer stamina and treatment used in getting better (or as good as IYSWIM).

You should pull your friend up on her comment and tell her that unless she can give you constructive and impartial advice, then you'll be looking a new friend. No

wannaBe Sun 03-Feb-13 17:16:42

hang on, who said anything about the friend being concerned about the dc inheriting mh issues? iirc the friend suggested the op was selfish as her mh issues it would seem leave her with a high possibility of suicide (as attempted in the past) and thus the chance of leaving children motherless.

The friend shouldn't have made the comments in the way that she did. But equally it is a bit naive to think that people won't have concerns/opinions over someone who has mental health issues with a history of attempted suicide having children, and the impact those issues might have on those children and even on that person's ability to parent. That doesn't mean that someone with mh issues cannot parent. It purely means that there could be issues which might make that problematic either now or in the future. Thinking it doesn't make someone judgemental, but saying it makes them insensitive. And I'm not really sure how you even go about offering support to someone without coming across as patronising/doubtful of their abilities, so IMO the best thing to have done would be to say nothing.

I have a friend who had severe mh issues in her late teens/early 20s. She attempted suicide on a number of occasions and was sectioned several times. Eventually she came off all medication, met a lovely guy, got married and fell pregnant. And yes, I worried about her and her DC, although I would never have said anything to her along those lines. She had the baby and was healthy for some time. Then about five years later she relapsed and ended up being sectioned again. She has now spent the past five years in and out of psychiatric hospitals. Her child spends most of the time having to be passed from pillar to post between friends and family so that the dh can work to support them all while juggling being a father to his dc and spending time with his dw at the hospital. The dd now is aware of her mum's condition and even states that "mummy needs to go back into hospital I think." She is ten. sad

Friend is absolutely a loving and doting mum, there is no doubt about that. But her dd is absolutely going to be affected by this for the rest of her life, and that is an awful lot to put on such a young child. Nothing can be done about that, things happen and they're in the position they're in. But if friend decided that she wanted to have another baby then, given what the existing child has already been through yes, I think I would find it hard not to judge that decision. I absolutely would never voice that to her though but internally I would struggle with my thoughts on it.

And to whoever said that if it were a physical illness i.e. a terminal condition would views be the same? Yes, if someone was dying of a terminal illness and decided to have a baby which was likely to be left motherless I would think that selfish.

sj2008 Sun 03-Feb-13 19:11:29

wannaBe I suppose this was what I was trying to get at by posting. I know she was rude and out of order in the manner in which she expressed her opinions as people seem to agree, but actually how many people would judge our decision to have another child given my circumstances? Is it that people in my life are concerned about the 'what ifs' for the future which I accept is understandable. Orccould it be that people do make assumptions about my ability to parent because of my illness?

The latter is so upsetting to consider. Although I have had periods where I have been very very ill, a lot more of the time I am my normal self. I have been very privileged to have had excellent education and so I have been able to research my illness and am proud of my understanding.I have considered all aspects of having children as a bipolar mum and I know I am in the best position to have made the right decision. What is upsetting is people's presumption that because I have been ill, that I am incapableof this decision.

sj2008 Sun 03-Feb-13 19:15:43

Sorry posting on my phone is not very tidy!

mrsbunnylove Sun 03-Feb-13 19:53:40

my mum attempted suicide seven times. i'm not saying its the ideal upbringing but we're all still here.

Lovelygoldboots Mon 04-Feb-13 11:28:59

Sj2008, none of us know the future and you have a right to decide your own future. If you get too hung up about other people's opinions then it could become a problem for you in staying well. Everyone judges other parents occasionally and you will probably do it yourself at some point that's just being human. I know someone who judged her sister for having a fourth child because the third one had died of a genetic illness. I could understand her concern, but it wasn't up to her. And your decision is up to you.

malachite Mon 04-Feb-13 12:19:36

I think Wannabe explained it really well. I would also be concerned, though I wouldn't speak to you in the horrible way your friend did. My DH's mum has bipolar disorder and was hospitalised on and off throughout his childhood. She also attempted suicide on a number of occasions. This has traumatised him and caused him lifelong problems. In between periods of poor mental health she was a good mum and I have no doubt that she loves him very much, but I can't help but feel that it's selfish to have children when you know you are likely to put them through this. I don't know you or the details of your condition so I am not saying this applies to you. I hope me saying this doesn't make things more difficult for you and that you can stay healthy.

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