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moving on after a termination

(55 Posts)
kakiqueen Fri 22-Mar-13 22:56:28

Hello all,
This is my first post on mumsnet and I'd really appreciate some advice.
I had a termination on Wednesday, for various reasons.
My dh and I already have two young children and felt we could not cope with another. I ha e a history of severe PND with both children and a history of ongoing low mood.
Please don't judge me for the termination, I already feel terrible enough.
Since having had the procedure, I cannot stop crying and feel so sad. I still feel it was the best decision in bad circumstances, but my hormones are all over the place.

The problem is that my dh is being very factual about the situation and is getting increasingly cross and frustrated with my grief. I feel I am entitled to feel sad and don't understand him.
I feel I have to hide my true feelings from him and pretend I'm fine.
He says he is suffering from compassion fatigue in view of my previous depression.
I'm so sad that we are so separate at this awful time.
Do any of you have experience of termination and relationships with your partners?
How can we move on without fighting every time we try to talk about this, which is what has been happening.
I worry we will spoil what was a good marriage by not being able to get through this.
Any advice, please?
X

mrdarceych Fri 22-Mar-13 22:59:58

Am holding your hand....x

Try therapy/counselling?

Sorry you had to make such a tough decision. You should be able to grieve how you see fit & it's sad that you feel you can't in this situation.

If it was a good marriage why did you have to have a termination? you both seem similarly distraught by the loss of your child. So why did you both choose termination?

she already said ^

They felt it would be too much for them & she'd have bad PND again.
Might've missed something, op?

YellowandGreenandRedandBlue Fri 22-Mar-13 23:04:11

It is very early, I think your feelings must be raw. My only advice with any hard experience is time and kindness. X

If i'm honest, it's sound like you had it because you felt you should in that circumstance, not because you didn't want it. If that's the case then no wonder you feel sad!!

I had a termination, current DP was father and I still think about it, it was 14 years go. it was the right thing to do at the time, but very hard. Please go and get some counselling. It isn't the end of your relationship but IME very different for partners, flowers

YellowandGreenandRedandBlue Fri 22-Mar-13 23:06:35

Please be kind, op is very sad. It is done, for their reasons, op asked for help going forward not a review of what has gone before.

kakiqueen Fri 22-Mar-13 23:08:27

Thank you mr.Darcych. I wanted to add that although the decision was completely unanimous, I am so furious that he seems so untouched by it. And by the fact that I've had to bear the physical pain whilst he seemingly is getting on with his life, expecting me to do the same.
I feel I have done something that separates me from most people I know.
It feels awful.

kakiqueen Fri 22-Mar-13 23:14:08

Thanks yellowgreen...you are kind.
We felt we just could not cope with another baby and more post natal depression. I've also just started a new job, which would have meant no maternity pay and ensuing financial struggles, which is what we had in the past.

kakiqueen Fri 22-Mar-13 23:16:04

Thank you, 25cats...
I think that is what we need to do.
He thinks we don't.

mrdarceych Fri 22-Mar-13 23:19:05

I cant comment on your personal circumstances..it is a huge deal what you have been through... I know Am here to hand hold...x

Chunkamatic Fri 22-Mar-13 23:25:13

You can't force him to have counselling but you can seek some for yourself. Usually the service that does the termination can offer counselling before and after the procedure, have you thought of speaking to them as a first point.
Maybe for now you should accept that he can't offer you the support you need, due to his own feelings and involvement in it. I think you need to be able to grieve and understand your feelings about terminating the pregnancy without confusing it with angry feelings towards him.
I think it's probably quite different for the person who has gone through the termination and been pregnant than it is for the partnerso please dont think that this shows a fundamental flaw in your relationship.
Take care of yourself.

rhondajean Brazil Fri 22-Mar-13 23:25:41

Kaki yurndhnis being factual because he doesn't have hormones surging through him - he has supported you as best he can in what he thihks was the right thing -he sounds exhausted but you need support.

Can you go to the GP and ask for counselling?

DH not being able to support everything doesn't necessarily make him a bad man. Just a human.

And be kind to yourself. You have had to do a hard thing.

rhondajean Brazil Fri 22-Mar-13 23:26:05

Sorry - your DH is...

It may be that being factual is just your DH's way of dealing with it. He may be scared/unable to let himself feel any emotions about it and this could be why he's unable to empathise with you. Give him time.

I agree that it sounds like you'd benefit from counselling over this.

driftaway Sat 23-Mar-13 04:11:47

Hi Kakiqueen,

I had a termination last November. I won't go too deeply into my reasons for doing so, but I also have a history of depression/anxiety and would have been unable to provide financially/emotionally for a child at this point in my life. My relationship was also very unstable.

My partner wasn't particularly supportive at the time either, he didn't want to come with me to the clinic because it would be "too depressing for him". So I basically told him to pull his goddamn socks up and offer support or I would leave him. He came with me (out of obligation I guess) but has always been quite detached about the whole thing.

The termination was, and still is, something that I feel I undertook on my own, both emotionally and physically. My first visit at the clinic I was alone and i was heckled by religious protestors and I basically cowered in my car until a kind security guard came over and walked me over to the clinic. That first appointment and the first few days afterwards were very, very painful and lonely. I understand how you feel, but it is definitely something you can get through. I didn't think I would be able to but I did.

My relationship is much better now, strangely I think that the relationship stabilised after the termination and my partner has since tried to be a better partner to me. I just don't bother discussing it with him. And while I do think about the termination a lot, I don't regret it. I made the best decision i could with the information i had at the time. I definitely agree with other posters that professional counselling might be a great help, just being able to talk to someone neutral might make you feel less alone and get some of those thoughts out of your head, especially if you feel the depression is overwhelming you. This is difficult for anyone to deal with, let alone if you struggle with mental health issues. honestly I think partners are able to detach more because its not their body that it happens to, it's just something that they hear about and don't experience.

I do hope you feel better soon, just know you're not alone in the way you are feeling and hugs

Ps. Sorry if this post comes across as very clinical and long all these thoughts came out rather disjointed.

Boutdesouffle Sat 23-Mar-13 04:45:20

UnlikelyAmazonian, terminations don't only happen in 'bad' marriages, that is a naive, polarized and pretty offensive thing to say...

OP, I think you do have to remember you have all these hormones are rushing through your body and that will definately affect how you feel right now. I'm not saying the hormones are the reason you feel bad right now, but they add to the confusion and doubt. In time you will be able to realise that you made that decision for a reason.

It didn't happen in the same way to your partner, everything is probably a little more black and white to him. As hard as it seems I think you have to keep telling yourself that he isn't meaning to be heartless/unconcerned. I think you can come back from this. Time really is a great healer.

Homebird8 Sat 23-Mar-13 04:58:16

I had a termination, very unwanted, due to personal medical circumstances. sad

My DH and I grieved in different ways. My DM was horrified that he went back to work straight away whilst I was so tearful and hormonal. I needed to revisit events and the decision pathway over and over and find a way to build this into my life. My DH, hurting just as badly, needed to be busy and surround himself with the everyday normality of work.

I think, initially, because DM was so vocal about her disgust, I sided with DH and tried really hard to understand. In the time we had alone we agreed that it was ok to handle it differently and to stand up for each other's right to do it our own way. And that's how we got through it. We chose not to criticise and view that as support for our own personal and natural reactions.

There is no one way to do it or to feel Kakiqueen. Your way is just as valid as your DH's. Can you share your feelings? Can he share his?

I am sorry for your loss sad and send you confidence that you acted in the only way which made sense for all your family. thanks

Gigondas Sat 23-Mar-13 05:06:58

My heart goes out to you- I had a termination because of severe feotal abnormalities (my son would not have survived birth) at 21 weeks.

I am in still in therapy 6 years later (now largely for other reasons as I find it beneficial) which gives you some idea of how earth shattering it was.

I did go a bit mad with grief (thinking all kinds of mad things ). My dh was back at work whilst I wasn't. He became so frustrated and desperate that at one point he used to search on here to see how I was thinking as I felt I couldn't talk to him sad. He was struggling too but couldn't turn to me as I was not coping.

I went for bereavement counselling then to a psychotherapist who specialises in pregnancy issues. This helped me deal with my grief and not overload him.

I wonder if talking to someone (Gp, cruse or counsellor ) would give you an outlet. I realise that your dh reaction about compassion fatigue is different to mine but am offering this as my experience of how I dealt with this. That may allow you to channel your grief so you can have space and time to talk to your dh. This may also allow you time to see if he is just Acting out his grief or there is something more fundamental wrong.

ktef Sat 23-Mar-13 05:34:22

Be kind to yourself but also to him. You have both been through a lot already by the sounds of it and your husband is just feeling the way he feels. I think pregnancy and pregnancy loss is very different for men any way, it's not their body, not their hormones, not their sense of self, they are not aware of all the changes to your body etc. And personally I would prefer a dh who was honest enough to say he has compassion fatigue than a dh who just said the right things for the sake of keeping the peace. My dh did the same. I suffer from OCD and dh admits that he finds it bl

ktef Sat 23-Mar-13 05:38:05

Posted by mistake mid swear word! He finds it bloody hard. And he is a mental health professional! It is hard. But that doesn't make dh an unfeeling monster. It's just a sign that actually you have both been through a lot and made the right decision. Just try and get through this time as gently as possible, for both of you.

BettyBlueBlue Sat 23-Mar-13 05:38:55

Dear OP, I had a termination two and half years ago, pretty much for the same reasons you had yours. I had two children already and fell pregnant when the second one was ten months. I was psychologically and physically exhausted at the time and couldn't bear the to go through another pregnancy. Plus we were living in a one bedroom flat that we couldn't sell due to structural problems.

Both my DH and I were under a lot of stress and coping just about with two, it would have broken us to have to go through all the exhaustion and stress of another baby.

We were both 100% sure we didn't want another child so I had a termination.

It was very hard afterwards, though a part of me felt a great sense of relief, and you have to allow yourself to grieve, and to go through a period of mourning, like with any other loss.

I didn't go to counseling or therapy about it, but the whole episode exacerbated my anxiety and sleeplessness.

It will always be something that I will have to live with and cope with somehow. I was always pro abortion, as I think bringing a life into the world is an extremely serious decision, and it has to be done when you're sure about it, happy and in a financially and emotionally stable relationship, when you feel physically and psychologically strong.

I couldn't offer any of this at the time, unlike with my previous two children, so I was sure I couldn't go through it.

The way I think about it is that sometimes women have miscarriages because their bodies are telling them there's something wrong and the pregnancy cannot continue. Sometimes it's your mind telling you you cannot cope with the strain of pregnancy and raising another child. You have to listen to that, and respect it.

It will not make the grieving period any easier, but at least it will give you some perspective that what you did, hard as it was, was what you needed to do at the time for your own sake and the sake of your family, and even for the sake of not bringing another life to a world that was not ready for them.

Big hugs to you

BalloonSlayer Sat 23-Mar-13 07:35:14

I think people are being a bit too kind to the OP's DH. She doesn't say he is "grieving quietly" she says he is

"getting increasingly cross and frustrated with my grief. I feel I am entitled to feel sad and don't understand him.
I feel I have to hide my true feelings from him and pretend I'm fine.
He says he is suffering from compassion fatigue in view of my previous depression."

So she had dreadful PND, which is one of the reasons they decided on a termination, a massive emotional thing for a woman, and how he's decided that he doesn't feel like supporting her emotionally because he has had to do so in the past and is a bit bored of it all now...

Fucking DIDDUMS! angry

I'd be inclined to do what drfitaway did: I basically told him to pull his goddamn socks up and offer support or I would leave him.

I might I suppose substitute "come to counselling" for "offer support."

I know none of that is helpful.

My only helpful observation is to wonder whether, OP, your very natural grief is being interpreted by him as regret, and because he himself does not regret the termination he is worried that you are blaming him for having it. He may need reassurance that you still believe you have done the right thing,

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