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I'm pregnant and DH doesn't know what his depression will let him do

(31 Posts)
MonthlyWishesCameTrue Wed 26-Dec-12 21:21:02

I've previously posted in chat under a different name, but I thought I need some support and advice and that this thread is better for it. I have posted in the past on here about when DH was actively suicidal and I got some good advice, but the support of a few people replying really helped.

I had previously posted in chat about the fact that we were ttc and when I found I was pregnant at 4 weeks last week, DH was initially happy for a few minutes, then thought this was a really bad idea. He thinks we should end the pregnancy and try again later. The reasons for this are that he has finally started getting counselling after having severe depression for 10 years. He was always keeping his emotions in check, never getting excited or looking forward to anything so never to feel down. He describes himself as a straight line emotionally when the rest of the world waves up and down during the day. It's always resulted in him seeming better but then coming to a head and having a severe bout with suicdal planning and episodes of me needing to tell him to eat /wash/dress etc.

In the last 6 months he has changed, he described himself as now going through puberty and he is only now feeling emotions that he has never felt before. He looks forward to thinks and gets upset when he doesn't enjoy things. I feel closer to him now than I have done our entire relationship. And we have been together for over a decade. One of the perks of him getting counselling is our sex life. Before his depression was bad and he had no drive so sex would be every couple of months, now it is a couple of times a week, but he still feels it is wrong to have these feelings, so everything I am having to reassure him is ok to feel. Even if he hadn't have changed and started getting help, we would have still been together as I love him more than anything and would never have wanted a divorce, I just wanted him to fell happier.

So the reason I am writing this, I don't know if I am expecting anyone to read this or reply or just if writing it down will help me, but when I started typing I was in floods of tears and now I feel calmer already.

So he thought the best idea would be to end the pregnancy and try again in a year as he feels he is finally started to deal with his depression and having a baby will mean that he can no longer deal with it and he will go back to how he was. He hates his jobs and it is only minimum wage, and we had always said there was no pressure to change that he should change when he feels better and there is a job he thinks he will enjoy. now he feels he has to change as we will need more money. He also feels selfish because he thinks he is only just. Starting to experience life and doesn't want that to stop. He always really really wanted a baby and was broody but says since we started ttc he doesn't feel broody any more since he's changing. That he was scared of the change as what if at the end of it he didn't love me anymore, as he doesn't enjoy seeing some of his friends from childhood that he used to. He said he though that if we got pregnant it would prove that he loved me.

I did not know any of this until we have been talking the last week. I have spent the last 12months doing everything I can to try and get pregnant. It has been a very emotional week, with lots of deep conversations and crying. He feels that when we talk he wants to have the baby, but when he's on his own he doesn't. I am the opposite, I absolutely want this baby and we've been actively trying to get this baby, even visited the gp etc but when I talk to him I can see that continuing with this will not be helpful for him and could really damage him.

I am not looking for a reaction on whether termination is good/bad/ugly but just how to help him either way. I have suffered with depression myself I the past, but that was as a result of adapting to a new physical disability. I don't have problems with depression now and my depression was no-where as near as bad as his has been. This last week I have been wanting to feel so happy. I joined the August antenatal club and went and booked in at the gp. But at the same time have been looking at termination clinics on line. I have not told any of my family as I know they will be happy. Christmas was really difficult not drinking or eating Brie, and being happy when knowing how I felt inside. I have felt angry towards him for leaving me in limbo not wanting what he wants, then feeling awful for thinking that and that he really wants to get better.

Tonight he thinks we should continue with the pregnancy, that he hopes he will feel broody again, but what if he doesn't love me when the baby comes? He thinks he will revert back into his former flat line state and asked if I would be ok with that during pregnancy. But it means that I will feel like going through pregnancy alone and I will have to hide aspects of it, like how it is going to worsen my disability as he was worried about not being able to look after me if his depression was bad and my disability worsened. (We have spent a few years researching my disability and the effect on pregnancy and had decided that it was worth doing it once for a baby). But I think that is not going to be healthy for him at all. Deep down I know he wants this and we can do it, but I don't know how to support him and for this to be a positive experience for him. He wants to enjoy it and look forward to the baby, but he thinks he can't. I think the baby will help give him something to work for but I know the time limitations will be too much for him.

I am so sorry for this being so long, it would be good to hear from anyone who has been in a similar situation with their Dh and how they coped feeling that they were going through pregnancy as a single person, but also having to look after someone else?

poppycat04 Wed 26-Dec-12 21:25:37

This sounds totally and utterly all about him. What about you? What do you want? Congratulations by the way.

poppycat04 Wed 26-Dec-12 21:33:54

Am bumping for you

BettySuarez Wed 26-Dec-12 21:42:49

I remember your previous thread, congratulations on your pregnancy smile

I do sympathise with your DH's mental health issues but you obviously want this pregnancy very much indeed and it is desperately unfair of him to be constantly changing his mind.

I think you need to make it clear to him that you intend to have this baby. With or without him if necessary.

He needs to be channelling his energy on getting himself better and preparing for his role as an active and supportive father.

Not dithering about this pregnancy and chopping and changing his mind. He has spent the last 12 months actively trying to get you pregnant for gods sake angry

I wonder if his depression has made him a big self centred? Am I right in thinking that he refuses to take AD's?

This is so sad, can you talk to a gp about it? Is he on any medication?
I don't thinking aborting your baby will help your DH as he sounds so up and down, imagine if he then got better, the guilt you would both feel would be terrible. (I am completely pro choice btw).

I am sorry it haven't been in that situation myself but have had PND and AND so understand those kinds of feelings.

Northernlebkuchen Wed 26-Dec-12 21:51:45

As somebody who has had three wanted pregnancies I can tell you that you CANNOT end a pregnancy for somebody else and hope to get away unscathed. Clearly your dh is struggling but don't be tempted to trade your mental health for his. Having a termination you don't want could seriously screw you up.

I think your dh needs to make some decisions about how he can take care of himself at this point. Expecting the baby just to go away won't help either of you.

Showtime Wed 26-Dec-12 22:42:50

I wish you a happy pregnancy, whether or not your DH is interested.

Bluestocking Wed 26-Dec-12 22:49:01

Can I be brutal? What on earth is this joyless, soul-sucking waste of space bringing to your life? If he is genuinely depressed, what is he doing to get better?

DioneTheDiabolist Wed 26-Dec-12 22:57:29

A baby may or may not make your DH happy.
A termination may or may not make your DH happy.
He has no idea what would be good for him.

So you have to rely on what is good for YOU.
What do you want?

HandbagCrab Wed 26-Dec-12 22:58:41

This all sounds very hard op. I think you have been there for him for a decade when he has had untreated depression and he is now saying he doesn't know if he loves you or not? I assume you have been supporting him emotionally, practically and financially throughout that time. He will know you will need more support whilst pregnant and when the baby is born and he is telling you he doesn't think he can do that.

It sounds like your relationship set up is that you give and he takes. If you think this cannot change then you need to decide if you can continue to carry him and deal with your disability whilst being pregnant and then bringing up your dc.

If I were you I would consider some personal counselling to try and clarify to yourself what you want from your life and your relationship and whether you want to keep your baby. Best wishes.

helpyourself Wed 26-Dec-12 23:03:35

I was on your previous thread. I think you have to really step away. The stakes are too high and he's too volatile emotionally. It's not his fault, he is trying, but really, you can't attach your future happiness to him.

helpyourself Wed 26-Dec-12 23:07:19

What if he doesn't love me when the baby comes?
You get a divorce and you might find someone else, you might not. You could terminate this pregnancy, never fall pregnant again and ^he might still fall out of love with you. Don't try and work out what he wants or what he might feel- you can't. Concentrate on your feelings.

susanann Wed 26-Dec-12 23:24:29

TBH i cant really understand why you decided to try for a baby when you are in this situation. Yes I understand you want one, but really how will you cope with a baby and a mentally unstable husband? I dont mean to sound unkind but you need to think of you and your baby now. Good luck

MonthlyWishesCameTrue Wed 26-Dec-12 23:26:02

Thankyou all, poppycat you are right I really really want this baby. We conceived on our anniversary and alot of other things sound right about the dates etc and I just knew it would be this month. I think dh knows now that I can't have a termination and if I did it might spell the end for us. It just feels wrong writing and reading the post back about termination, so was hoping to find ways of helping him

handbag he has actually managed to hold onto his job during this time so has been contributing financially. The GP tried to sign him off a few times but going to work was the only thing that kept him going. His bosses are aware and he works flexi time now so if he has a bad day/ week and does nothing he works evenings and weekends to make up for it

betty he is taking ADs, has always taken them. He recently started seeing a councillor and is going to try and get the computerised cbt.

help thankyou for sticking with me. He really does love me and I know it, he was just scared that if he kept changing what would happen if the new him didnt love me. I did telk him tonight that I was willing to take the risk and if it happened then we woukd get a divorce.

I know he would step up and be there for me, I know he would he a good dad and i think the whole process would he good for him, i just need him to see that

Hoophopes Wed 26-Dec-12 23:28:06

As the counselling is helping your dh can you ask your dh to focus on talking to the counsellor in the next few sessions about his feelings about the baby/termination/effect of his request on his marriage etc. If it has helped him so much recently then it might help him get over his fear or emotions that have meant he is considering a termination is good for him?

You say you are concerned about how you will cope physically with a pregnancy, especially if you continue it and have no support from your dh. Well, when you meet your midwife for your initial booking in appointment could you tell her that your dh is depressed, what he is asking you to do and how confused you are. Also about how your physical condition may (or may not) deteriorate and about needing more support. Then the midwife can refer you to the appropriate places for support - for you and your family if it is considered necessary?

MonthlyWishesCameTrue Wed 26-Dec-12 23:30:47

susan the reason why this is so hard is it is completely out the blue. things were improving with his depression and it seemed like the right time, thats why I've been so all over the place because I never expected this. I hoped it was just reaction ti the news, and it was just nerves that everyone experiences.

MonthlyWishesCameTrue Fri 28-Dec-12 11:33:52

hoop thank you, he has an appointment the 2nd week of January. I have a booking appointment with gp on 3rd January, we don't meet the midwife until after 12 weeks here apparently. And as this is my first I have no point of reference.

Still feel like I can't feel anything. He knows I definitely want to keep this baby and he told me he definitely doesn't want it. So I said we'll I guess it's my decision then and everything that happens is down to me, and everything that happens in life after this. I am angry at him today and told him I can't feel anything I feel numb. I feel guilty for getting pregnant, I can't feel overjoyed and excited, I can't feel worried that I may be had a missed miscarriage as hormone level still isn't going up on the digital test. He says it is his fault I feel like this and I said I completely agree with him.

Also going round to best friends for a mini Christmas dinner tonight, and always thought would tell them straight away. I've never been of the thought I wouldn't tell my immediate family and best friend until 12 weeks as would need their support if anything went wrong. I thought when this all started just over a week ago he would have come round and been really happy by now, that we would be telling the, but still nothing.

He saw his parents again my himself and they told him how great he would be. He didn't tell them he wanted me to get rid, I took that as a good sign that he couldn't verbalise that to his parents.

Still haven't read the antenatal choices, still haven't done all the other things I would imagine like measuring my waist at the start to see how it expands.

I feel like he has sucked the life out of me and stolen my happiness. Although when I said I was keeping it and he said he didn't want it, and I said well what will happen to us, does that mean we're over? He was horrified and said he would stay with me and the baby. How messed up is that.

I still believe deep down that he wants this, I just wish he would get there quicker and I can start to get excited, or sad if the pregnancy isn't going to survive.

BettySuarez Fri 28-Dec-12 14:23:06

You deserve to feel happy.

This is your much longed for child, something so precious and wonderful.

You should be feeling excitement, awe, wonderment. Not feeling angry and resentful or guilty.

I think you should start to surround yourself only with people who can be excited for you, happy for you.

It doesn't sound as if your partner is going to be that person - sorry sad

Hoophopes Fri 28-Dec-12 15:57:57

Hi - a booking appointment is just that, I would have thought a gp as good as a midwife. I found midwife just filled in forms at my booking in appointment, as they don't do anything here until you see them after 12 week scan, so guess the gp will book you the 12 week dating scan on nhs. I saw midwife then at week 16. Could you talk to the gp about how you are feeling and about your husband, to see if that gives you some support or reassurance? Personally I found the midwife very factual, giving little time more than she had to etc in my pregnancy - which shocked me. I guess I went into pregnancy with romantic views, not helped by unrealistic tv programmes, forgetting it is a job for nhs people and why should they be excited for me!! it took me time to feel excited, as was so worried etc - so try not to worry that you don't feel how you think you should feel, everyone has a different pregnancy journey. If you have a partner who has health issues, then getting support for yourself might be important, hence letting the gp or midwife know how things are for you might be helpful.

FiercePanda Fri 28-Dec-12 16:18:16

This sounds less and less about his depression and more about him and his inability to cope with the thought of being a father. Your DH says he loves you, but he should not be putting you through this emotional mess just because he keeps changing his mind. Throughout his depression he's managed to stay on top of his AD's, keep his job going and stay in his relationship with you, so he's not completely bound or defined by his illness, certainly not in the way he's suggesting now (whether his depression will "let" him be a dad, or "let" him love you when he's well).

For what it's worth, my DP behaved in a very similar manner to yours when we found out I was pregnant. It was unplanned and at the worst possible time work/study-wise, and he just couldn't deal with it at all. I stuck by him (although with hindsight I wish that I hadn't, as I think he needed the sharp shock of me leaving him to make him wake up) and in the end things did work out - he's a fantastic partner and father now, seven years on. He did make my pregnancy absolute hell with his constant mood-swings, refusal to talk about "it", too terrified to even feel our son moving and kicking inside me and that's something I still find very difficult. If I'm honest, I don't think I'll ever forgive him completely for making something that should have been so special so terrifying. I was walking on eggshells from the moment I POAS to the moment DS was born. (As a disclaimer, I have to say that everything changed as soon as DS was born - literally, the second the MW put him on my chest, something changed in my DP, his whole demeanour and attitude changed god knows it needed to. He is, genuinely, a brilliant Dad and partner now, and is even excited about having another baby, so I'm not saying your DP can't change, I'm saying you shouldn't have to be dealing with him right now. He hasn't got a clue how he's making you feel, it's all about his feelings, and his fears).

First time pregnancy is as frightening as it is exciting and you need to have unfailing support around you, not find yourself constantly scared to talk about it or feel excited about your baby because you're worried your DP will throw a wobbly "I can't cope!" tantrum and leave you high and dry.

Wafflenose Fri 28-Dec-12 19:13:22

I don't have much advice, but I didn't want to read and run.

Congratulations on your pregnancy, and I'm glad you DH is trying to get some help and sort himself out, even though he is being incredibly unsupportive at the moment.

I spent all of my teens and 20s severely depressed, was on ADs for eight years, had a breakdown followed by CBT etc, but knew I had to sort it out if I wanted kids. I had a year of expensive therapy, during which time I fell pregnant, and I really did manage to get myself together. So I know what it's like to be that bad, and with determination it CAN be overcome. I think your DH needs to concentrate hard on his recovery, which it sounds like he was planning to do anyway. You need to look after yourself and concentrate on the baby.

Who knows what kind of dad he will be? Like you say, he might be brilliant. He might not cope. I don't think it's clear just yet, but please don't end your pregnancy just because he wants you to.

MonthlyWishesCameTrue Fri 28-Dec-12 21:44:38

wafflenose thanks for talking about the depression side of things. It's hard because I do love him and want more than anything in the world for him to get better and be happy, and I have seen such an improvement in the last 6 ,months that I want it to continue.

We had decided this morning that I/we were keeping the baby, because I couldn't end the pregnancy. He said he would just have to get used to it, but he wasn't ready to tell people yet as he wanted to be happy with it when he told people so he could be excited, but he doesn't know if that would take weeks / months.

That only lasted about 30 mins. I've been having some cramps for a week and after researching just thought it was stretching etc, but it got really bad this morning and went to gp as started bleeding, got sent to hospital, think I have an early ectopic. Had blood test as start of serial HCG and have an ultra sound scan with the consultant in the morning, to decide if can be managed medically or if need surgery. They let me go how as I live near the hospital and i am medically trained. I have to go back if any heavier bleeding or pain and they'll take me to theatre tonight. I am so glad they let me come home as it is the hospital where I work and I just want to cuddle up in bed.

DH was fantastic in hospital and is really worried about me, but doesn't know how he feels about the situation. So for now we are. Just going to focus on getting through this medically and then we will have to have a big chat afterwards about all this. He knows he has been horrible and unfair on me and he told me that unprompted. Waiting for hospital to phone with my HCG level as I said I wanted to know. the First doctor I saw I had worked with so, he offered for the other doctor to examine me.

Thank you all, and I'll be back. hopefully this will give DH a wake up call and either way he is determined to do his homework from the councillor more and access the online CBT.

RubyrooUK Sun 06-Jan-13 18:01:45

Are you alright Monthly? I read your other thread and then this one but didn't know what to post. I see you haven't posted for a while so just wanted to see if you are ok...?

Letsmakecookies Sun 06-Jan-13 18:20:41

Sweetie. I felt like sobbing for you when I read your last post, with all of that turmoil going around losing the pregnancy and hospital appointments, and the last two paragraphs were still all about HIM. You sound like you have really lost yourself in all of this. I really hope you are ok, and that you have had the support for YOU that you need right now, and that you have had support through YOUR feelings. xx

Wafflenose Sun 06-Jan-13 21:56:25

I have been away for a week, so have only just found your latest message. I hope you are OK.

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