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Very scared / paranoid

(42 Posts)
FoxHugs Sun 30-Mar-14 23:57:02

I've been typing, and erasing my post here several times through fear that I'll jinx things. In fact this is one of the reasons I must speak out, if to hear if anyone else has felt like me?

Imagine trying to conceive for many long years, and each (assisted) conception has ended up in a loss (early MC), and then find yourself being 5 months pregnant TWELVE years down the line (and even that not through difficulty as it's due to Clomid, had an early bleed - lost one of the sacs (small mercies as the other one survived), plus was on Cyclogest until 16 wks, baby aspirin + Clexane to date from the very beginning).
My head is all over the place. And I think I will soon go clinically insane!

I was very young when my world was shot to pieces upon discovering I couldn't have babies "just like that". Initially fell preg on Clomid but MC'ied at 6 weeks. Thereafter neither Clomid, nor another drug (remember having to inject it) worked. Had laparoscopy to remove endo, treat PCOS but apart from my periods becoming regular- nothing changed.
Without going through the whole medical history, will mention that all of the above was repeated some years later, but when I did fall pregnant - I lost each baby.

Now I have somehow made it to 24 weeks (with private scans to keep me sane) and the fear / paranoia is kicking in big time.

I've bit of a sore throat, thinking that will bring on fever, thus doom. If it's not sore throat it's very painful back (something bad must have happened), or having had lifted something on the heavy side - that's it, placental abruption, etc.

Having had read so much about stillbirths (as well as knowing of four people in my circle of acquaintances who've had stillbirths), personal experience with MC's, everthing makes me scared.
Sore throat being the big thing at the moment for I keep thinking about Lily Allen's loss due to fever. In my head inevitably this sore throat will lead to pneumonia. I never used to care about stuff like this!!
Quite frankly I have no idea where people get the strength to carry on after such a loss. I lost myself in mid 20's after my own, comparatively less tragic experiences.

This worrying gets to the point where I'm breaking down psychologically and mentally. I don't ever think I will meet this baby, etc.
Not once in these months have I gone to the loo without a slight heart fluttering (fear I'll see blood).
If I haven't felt the baby I think "he's gone", and while I don't become hysterical, the silence builds up and up, until the stupidest of things flips me out and I start crying. DH thinks I'm crying about any particular subject at the time, but the truth is that it's all because I've convinced myself that something terribly bad has happened.

What is wrong with me? Am I actually going mad?

Terribly sorry about incoherent (phone typed) hyperventilation, I'm just so so so scared that I too will be a statistic, one of the remarkably unlucky ones.

With envy I've read posts here from excited mums to be, discussing baby clothes, plans, and I so wish I could do the same but I'm so scared something go terribly wrong (as I've typed this - sharp lightening of pain shot across the stomach - from hip to belly button).

Baby isn't moving as much right now, some 3-4 days in the row, and I'm paranoid. Equally too embarrassed to go to the hospital again (was there on Wed), so am dwelling.

I wish I could go to sleep, wake up, and all of this was over. And by over I don't mean a tragic end.

When people say "I know someone who had x amount of MC, now have twins / baby / 3 kids" etc is of little comfort, because they have their babies, me and many others in similar position don't.
It'd be great to know if, or how it's possible to get through this without collateral damage to ones mental health.

thanks Thank you for reading and understanding.

bauhausfan Fri 04-Apr-14 10:32:41

I too suffer from anxiety. If it helps, my psychotherapist used to say, 'The thing that you fear has already happened.' I have always found that very useful. Good luck and all the best xx

CbeebiesIsAboutToPop Fri 04-Apr-14 10:29:28

Hi fix, I know the paranoia well. For me it kicks in around 30 weeks and becomes all encompassing. It's the only thing I can think about, convinced something is going wrong.

Please come and join us over on this thread pregnancy after miscarriage it has helped me so much and the ladies all know what it's like xx

FoxHugs Fri 04-Apr-14 10:24:48

Hey squizita! It's Friday, hope you're well.
I've just had a chat with GP's surgery, and I swear they think people are thick. She was dismissing my question and repeating the same thing for umpteenth time. I had to interrupt, slow down, and literally speak to them as though they're a hyperactive child. Hopefully this explains the frustration! smile

Didn't know about ditches for Lily Allen, the fever story has been on every (Google) corner.
In fact all celeb stillbirths / MC's have popped up on my radar since I resurrected my long quest for children. Scared so stiff that upon approach of 6 months still haven't told people we're expecting (as inspired by Amanda Holden's story).

FoxHugs Fri 04-Apr-14 10:15:07

TomKat, you're going to be an awesome mum. Can just feel it in my bones. smile
Have you tentatively decided on the name?
We're struggling, as DH wants mainstream traditional, me - something that stands out (either grand like Thor (Norse god of thunder), or rare, old fashioned and both sets of grandparents can pronounce; no celeb names though). So... Back to the drawing board.

Once all is good, and happy, what are the three things you're most looking forward to after birth (something you may have missed, etc)? Are you going natural or C section?

Xx

Tomkat79 Fri 04-Apr-14 09:40:22

Ha yes I have been known to blast out the tunes and let rip! Midge ure was always someone my mum liked wink but I reckon these days a little Vienna is good for the soul!
Finished our NCT classes this week. In the first class she asked us to write down our fears. I only had one...getting her here safely. I'm not sure the others knew where to look or what to think as top of their lists were lack of sleep and a torn fanny! Because they've never suffered a loss it just doesn't enter their heads. Pregnancy = baby and that's that. I guess that helped me put my fears into perspective (for a whole day!)
I would never wish a MC on my worst enemy but I learnt so much about myself. How strong I am, how strong my relationship is, who my real friends are and this rainbow baby will be extra special as overcome some real tough times to get her here. How's that for positivity?!
as spring said hundreds of people have babies every day no probs. Well I'm bloody sure I'm gonna make up the numbers and you will too x

NoIamAngelaHernandez Fri 04-Apr-14 06:57:52

It isn't difficult to use a Doppler at all.

I have a similar history to you, OP, and used a Doppler for reassurance throuout pregnancy.

It is very easy to tell the difference between baby's hb and your own - a quick look at some online resources will show you how.

As for losing a baby because of the Doppler - as with all things, common sense should apply and if movements are reduced you should get it checked out.

squizita Fri 04-Apr-14 06:35:33

Fox smile

Spring I had heard that of Lily Allen (she had a stitch and bed rest for her 2 DCs suggesting something physical... Positive I read it in a trashy mag I was supposed to be tidying up in the media room at work but read ). So glad she did overcome whatever caused her the loss.

FoxHugs Fri 04-Apr-14 00:41:51

Hi TomKat!

Such a shame I didn't spot your post (was actually looking for someone I can relate to), wouldn't have put myself into a spotlight (which I loathe).

I'm so glad to hear things are going well for you. You know, from time to time I get so tired if worrying that I no longer can.
So tonight I decided to treat the bub to some fine 80's stuff, including but not limited to- Tom Jones, George Michael, ABBA, Ultravox (actually met Midge Ure once, very short! Got an autograph smile), and so on. It was just nice to have a break from worrying, good to be silly.

You've done extremely well! Only a few days away now :D
I think it's days now, compared to almost the whole year the pregnancy lasts (oh to be a cat! Sleep most of the time, free to go as you please, and short pregnancy).

Hugs xxx

ItsSpringBaby Thu 03-Apr-14 23:16:19

I can relate to this thread totally. It's really a horrible thing to discuss because when you suffer from severe anxiety or other mental health problems the fear really does feel real and overwhelming, often to the point of appearing very strange to others. On a side note I'd like to correct the opening post by mentioning that Lilly Allen didn't actually suffer a fever which then caused her miscarriage - her people put out that story initially to cover up the real reason (the loss) for her being admitted to hospital.

In my case what made my anxiety worse was that my baby did turn out to have an abnormality, which just confirmed my thoughts that I was doomed. Luckily it isn't life-threatening but I'm now completely on edge. I've had maybe 6 private scans in total which have rather than eased my worries made them worse!

In this state of mind You see what you want to see, and at the moment I zone in on anything that mentions stillbirth. All of a sudden I'm able to pluck out what seems like dozens of people from my childhood to adulthood memories who have suffered a loss to back up my own negative thoughts that it will happen to me. One thing I never do is to consider the hundreds of people around me who have given birth to wonderful babies with no problems.

I'm now about 4 weeks away from the big day and my anxiety is probably worse than ever. To manage it I mostly stay away from the pregnancy sections of any forum and far away from Dr. Google. It only makes things worse for me, as there are so many horror stories and very it's difficult to tell yourself that these things are mostly rare and all concentrated into one place.

FoxHugs Thu 03-Apr-14 22:55:41

squizita you're reading waaaay too deep into nothing smile
But the masses thing is true though, isn't it. I dare say that's why often things don't work out because the said masses are defined by professionals, so if you don't conform then you're not part of it, right?

I once paid to see a phd'ed to their eyeballs therapist (seriously, credentials were about two lines long, accompanied by a page written micro-font to show all accomplishments and clinical work).
I may as well had put the cash together and flown my girlfriends in from Holland for a night in / out and a good chat. It'd have been cheaper and more helpful.

RedToothBrush Thu 03-Apr-14 22:24:17

Red what is it with hypnobirthing? Everyone seems obsessed its s cure-all, it isn't even designed for post traumatic anxiety, just normal birth.

I just think that people don't know about alternatives and hypnobirthing is well publicised so thats the one people go for or suggest.

I've seen a lot of people saying "you could have an ELCS" as a way to cope with anxiety too - a lot in part due to the NICE guidelines - and I don't think thats appropriate for a lot of women either. Going down the medicalised route just isn't the solution for them as thats part of their fear.

People think that all fear is the same too, and don't always realise that there can be more than one cause of it.

Just a point though. I think I'm cautious of 'positive thinking' type strategies in general because I think they can be disingenuous in their failure to recognise that not everything in life is positive and sometimes its good to be prepared for the possibility of bad things. But thats just how I view them. If they have positive outcomes for others which then they are of benefit and they are valid suggestions. I think the danger of being completely dismissive of certain strategies, is that this might put other people off them, and it might be the right approach for them.

I think its important to stress what a personal choice it is, and that there isn't a one size fits all solution. I have my doubts about whether this is really being conveyed to women though, with certain ideas definitely being favoured over others. (Hence women feeling to a certain degree like they are being processed rather than individual needs being considered).

I also think the way that ideas/theories are presented are as important as the contents too. I know I'm less likely to respond to being 'told' something than reading about it and being able to process something on my own terms. But others will get on better with having someone to discuss things with.

People have preferred ways of learning which is well recognised in education so it definitely stands to reason we should be working on and developing different ways for dealing with anxiety too.

I think issues of failure and womanhood are connected to all of this, but also part of a much wider cultural issue of comparing and valuing ourselves to other women (like the idea that we should all be excited about pregnancy not anxious about it).

Tomkat79 Thu 03-Apr-14 22:11:51

Hey Fox

I posted a thread the other week along these lines. Although I haven't been on quite the journey you have I have experienced losses which has robbed my current pregnancy of any ignorant bliss!

I'm now 36 weeks and worry myself stupid most days. The reality for me is I will not believe she will make it until I hold her alive and kicking in my arms. She's not a massive mover either and by 5pm I'm usually frantic. But it's an inner frantic that I am learning to cope with on a daily basis.

Take each day at a time Fox and try thinking just a little more positive as each day you are nearer to meeting little one. It's def your turn xx

NearTheWindymill Thu 03-Apr-14 21:52:46

oh cup congratulations. You do know me btw - namechanged - I sent you an order of service. Oh, I've a lump in my throat now.

But, OP, I know it's incredibly hard. We went through hell and my obstetrician said something like "I think we will all heave a sigh of relief when this pregnancy gets to 28 weeks". Not going into all the details or the back story but it got to 41.5. That little miracle is on the sofa now, nearly 16 and wrapped in blondeness and purple furry headphones.

Something that really helped was that I was offered psychiatric support if I felt I needed it; just pick up the phone and they said it could be switched on.

>>hugs<<

squizita Thu 03-Apr-14 21:44:09

Red what is it with hypnobirthing? Everyone seems obsessed its s cure-all, it isn't even designed for post traumatic anxiety, just normal birth.
Plus it is designed to promote brainwash natural birth as the goal, and other options as second best. Not ideal. I'd love to see a study into whether it contributed to birth disappointment or PND in some cases (in the case of one friend, I think it did. She hypnoed herself into denial and viewed her interventions as failing womanhood).

Already knowing I've failed several times and having made the conscious decision never to feel guilty or taboo, I just cannot reconcile myself with some elements of it AT ALL.

StarsInTheNightSky Thu 03-Apr-14 21:42:06

You're very welcome xxx. I think the good days do get more frequent as time goes on, but it's still really tough. Something I really struggled with was in the first trimester and early second trimester, although statistically the risks are higher, there's little you can do, so I could try to focus on thinking positively and trying not to worry too much, whereas as you start getting through the second tri and into the third tri, suddenly the responsibility is yours to keep an eye on baby, keep track of movements, notice anything unusual etc.
It's a massive amount of pressure, but I sort of got accustomed to it after a while, and now it doesn't seem quite so bad. I hope that makes sense, I feel a bit fuzzy headed tonight! As an aside, the best thing I found to get baby moving is the pink lemonade flavour fizzy lucozade, that flavour in particular seems to work better than anything! Also, eating some carbs later at night, around 9 - 10pm seems to make a big difference to our little man's energy levels the next day, so I try to do that when I can.

About the obnoxious midwife (there are some real pieces of work out there aren't there? hmm) try if you can to discover your inner pregnancy rage and funnel it. With a lot of these people it's all about giving the impression that you're not going to take their nonsense, even if you don't feel that way inside. It can be really hard, but I've found that they usually only need one sharp retort to back right down.
Saying something along the lines of "I'm not happy with your tone, please change it immediately" in a voice which is polite but brooks no argument usually works well, if she tries to retort, say very firmly "your attutide is hideously unprofessional and I simply don't trust you with my care, I want to speak to the supervisor of midwives right now." They have to have a supervisor of midwives available 24 hours a day (as far as I am aware). Complain to the SoM, you shouldn't have to put up with being treated this way, people like that are really not helpful when you're feeling stressed already, it makes my blood boil! Hang in there, you're well over halfway there xxx.

Cupoftea I am so sorry to hear about the terrible time you've had, hope you're holding up as well as can be expected xxx.

squizita Thu 03-Apr-14 21:26:31

... Just on an aside. Don't always write off things you read as being for "the masses" and you being the only one to probe further or seek something different. Most of us in the RMC "club" have also done this extensively.

We're not into twee low-level counselling (the perinatal is a psychiatrist, have you seen one before and if not - you didn't say you had - how do you know they're crap but think they're "super duper"?) And we are all individuals.

You sound bloody terrified, but very defensive with it.

RedToothBrush Thu 03-Apr-14 21:23:22

My issue doesn't lie so much with the nature as it does with medical profession.

This is my world. My long list of fears is very much headed by this and I'm very bothered about being spoken down to. I don't like the idea of being 'out of control' and them holding the power. I find it frustrating especially if I can not intellectualise my anxieties. (Also on my list was my inability to get excited about being pregnant and having difficulty coping with other people's over excited reaction to my pregnancy as I don't share those feelings).

Honestly I think there is a lack of proper understanding about fear and how it affects people differently which doesn't help either. People wrongly make assumptions about what 'the fear' is about and don't comprehend it can be worse for some women than others.

From what I've read, its often women who are used to being in control in their life and are intelligent are often the ones who struggle most with the uncertainty of having a child because it conflicts so much with their normal coping strategy - of being in control.

squizita Thu 03-Apr-14 21:15:28

What you described as wanting was exactly what I got from the perenatal team, BTW. Its very mindfulness based, about realistic chances, knowing and coping.

You know you can change midwife if you want to, also? You don't have to go private for that! In fact, almost all the private consultants who are very highly rated also do NHS work: if you don't like your care, ask to change.

And don't worry about food etc too much. Just as you find the NHS blase, I found some private/alternative clinics gave an exhaustive list of "forbiddens" with no scientific backing to cynically hook frightened women in and keep them paying. I managed to get onto a world famous team on the NHS (by asking repeatedly) and read extensively; I found there are few things we can control bar the right medication and regular checks.

RedToothBrush Thu 03-Apr-14 21:03:26

Basically my brain should be challenged; you can take the same thing and present it to me in four different ways. The one that has the most logic, intellectual and fresh approach will probably work.

In my case you can line up a hundred "super duper" pregnancy psychiatrists repeating the same thing, I'll just dismiss it as boring, same old stuff. Not because I'm mad, but because I already know about it.

Haha, sounds very familiar...

Seriously consider having a look at that book.

It works on the principle that we have two parts of the brain that control our actions. We have a part that does the logical thinking and a part that does the emotional thinking. And they don't always work together.

Its puts it in a way that explains why you might "know" something from the evidence, but still act in a way that is completely contradictory to that logic. The logical part understand the likelihood of something, but your emotional part still goes "but what if...". It is a bit of a 'lightbulb' moment in understanding why you can't reconcile why you can be so irrational yet understand x, y and z.

It is an easy read, but actually I think thats part of its appeal but it doesn't insult your intelligence at the same.

FoxHugs Thu 03-Apr-14 21:01:22

(Cont.) ... Small example (pressed "post" by accident). This is a very basic example (the medical necessities is too long winded, but was the straw that broke the camels back).
She told us we were to be seen by a community midwife, she even wrote all numbers down for us. Two weeks later she was laying into us as to why we haven't been assigned a midwife. Seriously?! God forbid if she'd had the authority to tell me what medication to take, or not.
I didn't want to embarrass her so said nothing, but I did immediately call our private Dr who does blood monitoring (need to take meds) asked if it's worth ditching the NHS and going private, because I'm frightened that an attitude like that will kill or seriously harm our child.

The said doctor doesn't like NHS secretive approach etc., so wasn't at all surprised to hear about our experience. Saying also something about certain type of midwives thinking they're IT, but should, in fact, be sticking to delivering babies "as they're meant to".

Hope you're doing well ? Xx

FoxHugs Thu 03-Apr-14 20:51:31

Hugs to you, Cupoftea. Big, huge bear hugs.
The whole issue about something being missed is exactly what I have.
So very sad that you had to experience the awful consequences of these errors, I cannot put into words how in awe of you I am for becoming a stronger person through your loss, it takes a big person to be where you are today!

My issue doesn't lie so much with the nature as it does with medical profession. The nature I can only try and work with (avoid foods, etc.), but it's the blasé recklessness (no other words for it; I'm a perfectionist at work, yet no lives depend on it but I work as though they do), cockiness and overconfidence of medical professionals that frightens me!

In our antenatal we met a midwife who treats you as though you're intellectually and socially waaaay down below her level, because you're not a midwife. How very well dare you question their oppinion or actions?! Good lord! It's people like that I'm scared of.
It wasn't just her demeanour but, putting it bluntly, stupidity and arrogance that made me shake with fear. A small exam

FoxHugs Thu 03-Apr-14 20:40:46

Stars I could just hug you smile
Yesterday was a good day, I actually felt happy butterflies that this just might work out.
Because he'd been quiet for two days, I took matters into my own hands - laden with Millie's cookies set sail for home, to try and make him respond to me! The sugar made me feel sick if I'm honest, as did the cold drink, but he did kick!!! I felt good that I'd been positive about things. These days may be few and veeeery far inbetween, but I've had my 1st! Xxx

I am also 24 weeks and completely stressed out.

My experience is different- my last dd was born with huge disabilities. I knew in pregnancy something wasn't 'quite right' but couldn't get anyone to listen to me until 35 weeks. She was born at 36 weeks and handed to me to hold until she passed away. Thankfully, she had other plans, and stayed for 13 months before leaving me.

With this pregnancy, I'm so scared something will be missed again. Not that I would do anything differently, but I would like to know about any problems before the birth this time. But my anxieties have moved on from my dd's problems to other equally awful scenarios, many of which you mentioned in your OP. I've no idea how to get through the next 14 weeks without anxiety. It's difficult being pregnant without the innocence and joy that I see in other people, but equally I don't want to wish this time away.

Hoping you get some useful advice OP and wishing you a healthy and uneventful pregnancy.

FoxHugs Thu 03-Apr-14 20:30:58

Thank you very much for your input, RedTooth, it's very refreshing.

All of us are different, probably that's why most things meant for "the masses" just don't agree with me.
When I was younger and had lost my dad suddenly, I took up GP's offer of counselling. And there she was - slinging all those cliches at me, I felt they're not appreciating that my brain capacity and analytical mind, using same old rusty stuff without consideration that I'm an individual.
I'm struggling to find the right words to summarise what I mean, you'd have done it better than me.
Basically my brain should be challenged; you can take the same thing and present it to me in four different ways. The one that has the most logic, intellectual and fresh approach will probably work.

In my case you can line up a hundred "super duper" pregnancy psychiatrists repeating the same thing, I'll just dismiss it as boring, same old stuff. Not because I'm mad, but because I already know about it.
The doctor, without psychiatrists degree, hit the nail on the head with one simple sentence.
I know stats, I know majority are OK etc., etc., but I also know that stuff happens, it's very real, it's very frightening, it's very life changing.
The only thing I'm trying to do is eliminate potential risks to save any tragedy, and self blame should something go wrong. Plus draw on experiences of others, hopefully getting some tools I can implement in my own daily life. Little tricks and tips, no different to sharing recipes.

smile

StarsInTheNightSky Thu 03-Apr-14 20:17:54

I agree about joining the pregnancy after miscarriage thread, all the ladies are lovely and there's plenty of hand holding and support, which can be a huge help.

Personally I too found that the worst of the fear and paranoia hit me at about 24 weeks, I was expecting it to get less then, but it got particularly bad between 24 and 28 weeks, which wasn't helped by a lot of other complications and a lot of periods of reduced movement during that time, thankfully all seems to have settled down now though, touch wood!

Don't ever feel embarassed to go to the hospital, I was in four times in one week for reduced movements not that long ago, and the hospital said they'd rather see someone in every single day than have them sat at home worrying about whether something might be wrong.

At about 26 weeks I felt like my mental health was at it's lowest ebb, I felt worse than I had in a very long time, but as I got to 30 weeks it started to get better, things settled down and baby was getting bigger and stronger, and could be provoked into tantrums more easily to get him moving when he was being stubborn grin. I'm now 31+4 and not wanting to talk anything up, but I'm feeling happier and more relaxed than I have been for ages. Something which helped massively for me was getting my ELCS agreed and a date in the diary for it.

Take it one step at a time, one day at a time, you've had some great advice on this thread, but remember to be gentle with yourself xxx.

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