If you had PND/anxiety with your first, when (if ever) did you feel ready for DC2??

(29 Posts)
BotBotticelli Thu 02-Jan-14 12:03:36

DS1 is now 13mo and i am recovering from a very hard year with PND and anxiety. I have had CBT counselling which has been a great help, but things are still not perfect. I have found being a mum harder than I ever thought possible, and DS has been a very challenging baby (a colicky screamer, then early teethin, generally very unsettled and hard work, fights naps but really needs them, very frustrated at every milestone etc etc).

I do feel like I am coming out the other side of it all, and do enjoy my time with my DS now, but I do think one of the main reasons I feel better is I am back at work 3 days per week. Plus, DS seems much much happier now he can walk and toddle about. I think he hated being a baby almost as much as I hated looking after a little baby.

ANYway, back in the days when I was pregnant, DH and I always planned to have two children: I am a twin myself and have many fond memories of playing with my sister as a kid. I always envisaged having two, but now I am not sure I can face going back to that dark place again sad

If you had an experience at all like mine with your first, did things ever change in your head to the point where you felt like having a second baby? When??

And did you get PND the second time round? I am so scared of putting myself back into that newborn baby situation again that I found so very difficult to cope with.

I would be so grateful if anyone can share their experiences. I have no one in RL I can ask this of.

happytalk13 Fri 03-Jan-14 16:39:21

Mine lasted for 6 years but looking back I think there were various factors including a mis-diagnosis, domestic abuse, lack of home stability and lack of continuity of care that contributed to that very long very dark tunnel. I had DC2 6 months ago. DC1 is nearly 9. No PND/anxiety/insomnia this time around. Just because you've had it once doesn't mean you will get it again. I feel support from a loving partner and stability has been elementary in me not having a relapse - but that's just my experience.

Metalhead Sat 04-Jan-14 18:38:54

I couldn't contemplate having another until DD was nearly three, and felt like a really bad mother for not wanting a second during that time.

I've just discovered I'm pregnant with DC2 and am terrified of going through the first year again and getting PND. However, I'm hoping that if I'm unlucky enough to struggle again, I will seek help sooner. (Last time I refused to take any medication for various reasons).

My advice would be to just wait and see how things develop, you might find that one day you will change your mind or you might not. 13 months is still very little in the grand scheme of things, so unless age is an issue there really is no rush! (Personally I don't understand the popularity of close age gaps - having a baby and toddler seems like such hard work to me!)

Overreactionoftheweek Sat 04-Jan-14 18:58:31

Just another one weighing to say "me too!" Horrendous pnd, took 18 months to recover, ds is now 2.2 and I am now ready to ttc.

Dh isn't as convinced and would be quite happy to stick at one...we're not using contraception and will just see what happens - took years to have ds so I think we both believe it won't actually happen!

If it does, I'll be thrilled and will be very careful to plan before hand, i.e. remind all medical staff involved I had pnd first time, be prepared to take ads this time, tell friends I need to socialise regularly.

Someone up the thread mentioned having an acceptance that the first year will probably be shit, oh yes, I think that's hugely important. I totally had the fantasy of being an awesome mother, who swanned around parks and coffee shops with her serene baby, in between all the organic baking and cuddles and giggles - what bullshit! grin it's bloody hard even without pnd and we're sold this weird nonsense about how blissful it will be...yeah, no sleep, bleeding nipples, screaming baby...why would anyone enjoy that?! Of course, they are bloody gorgeous and cute inbetween all the screaming, haha

NiceGlassOfSherryAndASitDown Sat 04-Jan-14 20:05:23

wow a lot of us in a similar boat! I too could have written your post OP, had a very difficult time with DS due to all the reasons you list and struggled with anxiety - particularly around crying and naps (or fighting naps despite needing them so badly and all the crying that comes with that), but I did have a small age gap, got pregnant the week before his first birthday - and DD was born when he was 21 months. unfortunately the post natal anxiety did return and I got complex-PTSD as well and suffered horribly with stress. all I think stem from a difficult childhood but weren't helped by the massive hormone drop I seem to suffer after giving birth and the fact that crying babies make me so anxious I lose all rational thought and feel like I'm going crazy sad

they're now 14 months and almost 3 and having had hypnotherapy, taken up meditation and just trying to get and stay calm as much as possible life is good - my high needs baby is now a highly strung child but only about 50% of the time - the rest of the time he is managed with a pretty strict schedule and lots of advance warnings about what's happening next and lots of discussions about feelings. I honestly think if you really want another you'll know when the time is right. I'm sure most people who know me think it can't have been all that bad if I had another but honestly it really was awful, I just knew that the baby stage is over so quickly that it couldn't put me off having more, I've always known I wanted lots of children.

its interesting to read that other people are affected by hormones after birth, I wonder if there's any supplements that can be taken in/after pregnancy to prevent the dip?

I think it's worth noting all the tips here - not sure I have any except if you think things aren't right then see your GP/mental health team asap because I was brushed off several times with 'you're scoring so low on the Edinburgh scale we won't bother referring you' - I was really struggling and going for help was my last straw, if it happens again I'll be bashing the doors down! but just I think you'll know if and when the right time is. FWIW my second pregnancy and Labour were amazing in comparison and DD slept all the time until 3 months. it did get harder in between but like others say I prepared myself for a first year of hell - it was but it was over so quickly and I don't regret for a single second having another. both DC are gorgeous, funny things full of life and mischief and love and I'd do it all the same if I had my time again. in fact DH and I already know we'd like a 3rd, there'll just be a bit of a bigger gap this time!

best of luck whatever you decide OP and hope those moments become more frequent as your DS grows grin

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