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to please ask for help. really struggling with body image / weight gain in pregnancy

(34 Posts)
MoodyDidIt Tue 26-Mar-13 19:16:46

i know i am probably going to be flamed to high heaven for this

i am 33 and newly pg with a much wanted, planned for, DC3

i am already calorie counting like mad and restricting what i eat....i am so starving all the time but i do not want to put much weight on. i did this in my last pg and only gained about 15 lbs there abouts. but i was hungry all the time and pretty miserable. but i loved hearing people comment on how small my bump was and how i was still so slim etc. at one point i was referred for a growth scan by MW as at 30 something weeks i was measuring something like 17 weeks and it still didnt give me a wake up call. thankfully dc was, and is fine and healthy. even when the doctors were stitching me up after my CS they even commented how the bump had gone nearly flat straight the way and this is one of the things i remember most about the birth

i also remember crying in the days after coming home from hospital because i was so hungry and weak from the surgery, i wanted to eat, but i just wanted to get back to normal super, super quick

i think some of it has to do with my 1st pg with DC1, i was with my exH (then H) then and i got massive, put on about 4 stone which was huge for my little frame (five 2 and usually about 8stone). and exH made it dead obvious he was grossed out by me, he would not even touch my pg bump. my now DH (also dad of dc2) was complete opposite, loved and clearly fancied me all the way through, but i just have this obsession about being skinny, and it doesnt matter what he says or does. he was sat with me in the bath earlier and i wanted to scream at him to not even look at me when i got out as i felt so fat and ugly sad

i am not proud of any of this, i was going to NC as i am a regular but if people i get on with on here want to fall out with me i dont blame them sad i feel like i don't deserve to be PG as i am already trying to restrict how big i get and i have not even had my first bloody scan yet ffs., i know loads of people would be so happy to be pg, but its something i need help with, i need some sense talking in to me. please help x

Pilfette Tue 26-Mar-13 19:26:13

I'm not going to flame you - what would be the point? You sound deeply unhappy. I can't say that I understand where you are, I've always been big and it doesn't stress me but this is something that seems to be operating on two levels for you.

Rationally, you know the being PG means some inevitable weight gain and you had a wake up call during your last pregnancy by having to have a scan to measure growth. Emotionally, it seems to be a different matter.

Can you talk to someone in the medical profession (GP, midwife) about your concerns and feelings? Maybe even have some talking therapy to really unpick things? Have you talked this through with your DP? FWIW, your ExH sounds like a shitbag, but please don't assume that your DP feels the same way.

I really hope you get some support to work through this, and I wish you a healthy and happy pregnancy and a healthy and happy little bundle in due course.

Theicingontop Tue 26-Mar-13 19:31:40

I sincerely hope people know better than to flame you.

Given your experiences whilst pregnant with your first child, I think it's entirely reasonable to think you may have an eating disorder. Do you find yourself obsessing about your weight when you're not pregnant?

Did you tell your GP or midwife last time? They need to know about this! It's nothing to be ashamed of. Restricting or starving yourself through pregnancy can be very dangerous for you and the baby, as you know, and I think the fact you know this but are still having thoughts of restricting your diet is telling of something that needs help. Definitely tell your midwife so you can get some support.

Nanny0gg Tue 26-Mar-13 19:31:44

You need to talk to someone about this. Rationally you know that you are not doing you or your baby any good, and that even if you did put on 4 stone it's dealable with after your baby is born.
There is obviously so much more going on than a worry about a few extra pounds that you need to speak to a professional.
In the meantime, don't beat yourself up, but take care of yourself and your baby.

INeedThatForkOff Tue 26-Mar-13 19:35:47

I don't think what anyone says on here will make much difference to you, but in the long run, what does pregnancy weight gain matter? You'll get it off again in your own good time, and by that point your pregnancy and tiny newborn will be nostalgic memories as your little one grows up.

I say this as someone who hates being 2st overweight five months on, but realistically I know that I'm in some sort of control and will lose it when family life settles down again.

It's so much easier to say, but just relax and enjoy your pregnancy. I'm sure your DH would be much happier with a sensible weight gain and a healthy pregnancy than a hungry, miserable wife.

FattyMcChubster Tue 26-Mar-13 19:41:28

Not wanting to flame either but you know there's a happy medium- the one where you gain enough to have a healthy baby and be fit enough in yourself to look after dc, but not pile it all on.
You did put weight on but you lost it again so don't be scared that you can't do it now. Your dh loves you, trust him and let him help you.
It sounds like you might need to talk to someone, just so you're getting enough nutrients and calories for you and baby. I know you don't want either of you suffering.

ElliesWellies Tue 26-Mar-13 19:49:55

You need to think about the nutrients that are in the food you eat, not just the calories. You are building another human being as well as sustaining yourself. The baby will take the nutrients before you do, so if this is based on body image, you're hardly going to look great if your hair starts falling out are you?

If you cut out junk altogether, there is no reason why you cannot eat a balanced diet and be perfectly healthy, without putting on too much. Really.

Thurlow Tue 26-Mar-13 19:52:08

It's normal to be concerned about baby weight, I think a lot more women struggle with how their body changes and the weight that they put on during pg than will actually come out and talk about it. And they do say that you really don't need to eat many more calories than normal when pregnant.

However I agree with the other posters that this sounds as if it has slipped in to something more like an eating disorder. It is one thing not to gorge yourself when pg, but another thing to actively reduce your calories.

No one is judging you about this, I promise. Do you think you could talk to your midwife or doctor or, if you don't feel able to talk, could you write it down like you have done here? Maybe you could also talk to your DH, who sounds lovely, and maybe start to plan some healthy meals to eat together as a family?

Your ex sounds like a twunt of the highest order. I'm no expert, but to me his reaction sounds more like a reaction to either the baby or losing control over you, than a reaction to your natural weight gain.

stopgap Tue 26-Mar-13 19:54:22

Fatty Chubster is right--you can have a healthy pregnancy, eat right, exercise etc. and not deprive yourself or your baby.

Maybe you could join an eating disorders group. I should imagine it doesn't really matter whether or not it's aimed at pregnant women. Good luck.

MoodyDidIt Wed 27-Mar-13 08:36:22

It's normal to be concerned about baby weight, I think a lot more women struggle with how their body changes and the weight that they put on during pg than will actually come out and talk about it

i agree with that ^^ i do think there are probably lots of women like this (maybe not as bad as me) but no one talks about it. i could never talk to my RL friends about this, for example

i am not anorexic or anything, when i am not Pg i am around 8stone which is normal for my height (5 foot 2) but i do try quite hard to stay at that weight, by calorie counting, eating healthily etc. but i don't want to risk my baby.

basically i really want to be one of these women who stays small in pregnancy and snaps back quickly. but, naturally, i am not, i have to force it. plus i had my last 2 babies in my 20's so was probably easier to get back to normal. now i am 33 i am scared my body will be ruined forever

god in my first pregnancy i remember looking at my huge wobbly legs and arms, as well as the ridiculously big bump, i hated it, i hated that pregnancy. i wouldn't even let anyone take any pics of me. i have had trouble bonding with ds ever since he was born (he is almost 7 now) and i am sure its both because of the pregnancy and because of my bad relationship with his dad

anyway i have rambled again, but thank you everyone for the posts x

ErikNorseman Wed 27-Mar-13 08:55:48

Please go to the go and ask for an urgent referral for counselling around your food issues. This is unhealthy and obsessive, it is affecting your mental well being and potentially your baby so it is a very important matter. You need to try to address this urgently.

blueballoon79 Wed 27-Mar-13 08:57:04

I wouldn't flame you either, you sound so unhappy.

Your ex husband was clearly a prat and a time where he should have been supporting you and marvelling at what your body has just achieved he made you feel ashamed.

Clearly you're holding onto the shame your ex husband made you feel and projecting that onto your DH, when in reality you know that your DH fancied and desired you.

THere's nothing wrong with putting on weight during pregnancy, it's totally natural and normal and you have a supportive husband now who loves and desires you but still you're restricting food despite knowing it can cause you and your baby harm.

It's for this reason that I would really suggest counselling. It's obviously a deep rooted fear that you really need help with.

I'd like to share my story with you if I may?

My DD was born by C-Section and it left me with a huge, wobbly overhang. Even dieting and exercise wouldn't get rid of it and my (now ex) DP at that time was the same as your Ex and made me feel ashamed of myself.

Instead of being proud of myself for bringing my beautiful daughter into this world, I was full of shame and self loathing. I'd cry if I caught sight of myself in a mirror and removed all mirrors from the bathroom so I wouldn't accidentally catch a glimpse of myself when getting out of the bath. I hated the way I looked and it was so debilitating, exhausting all my energy on how ugly I perceived myself to be nd how ugly he made me feel. He couldn't conceal his disgust when he looked at me and it hurt so much.

He ended up leaving me when DD was only 10 months old and in time I met someone else.

I wouldn't let my new partner anywhere near my stomach and wouldn't allow him to see me naked.

One night he reached over whilst we were in bed and I brushed his hand away from my stomach.

He was genuinely upset and told me he didn't want to be with a girl who had a girls body. He wanted a woman and all my curves made me just that, a woman. I'm a woman who has given birth to two children and my body bears the marks of this and he told me that this to him made me ultra sexy, strong and feminine.

He also told me it hurt to be compared to my ex who in comparison acted like a little boy.

It's taken a while but I now accept my overhang- without it I wouldn't have my beautiful daughter.

Sorry for the essay blush I just wanted to tell you that I really know how you're feeling and I really hope you get some help for it. You've taken a huge first step by admitting how you feel on here, now you just need to take it further and get the help you need and deserve to love and accept yourself and understand that your husband loves and accepts you for you, regardless of how "skinny" you are.

MoodyDidIt Wed 27-Mar-13 10:27:20

i will speak to my gp, although don't hold out too much hope for counselling, have had it before (due to other reasons) and it was useless tbh

i have my booking appt soon so will also speak to my MW, i tried to tell my mw about it last time, but she didn't seem that bothered and just gave me a leaflet on healthy eating hmm ...helpful

and thats a lovely story blue balloon, your DP sounds lovely. i am the same, cs overhang, i hate it and am scared it will get worse this time, have even considered a v birth but am scared of that as well for other reasons sad

what a twat your ex was, what is wrong with these pathetic, shallow "men"

MoodyDidIt Wed 27-Mar-13 11:48:47

and i am taking it out on DH, and the dc, being miserable and depressed all the time

and i am just so angry all the time, i feel like i am going mad

blueballoon79 Wed 27-Mar-13 11:56:44

Sometimes it's just a matter of getting the right counsellor. I've had counselling before which was totally ineffective as I didn't feel they were listening to what I was telling them.

I then had a wonderful counsellor, who really listened and I stayed with it for a year and felt a lot better.

I really would speak to your GP and share how you really feel. I hope something can be sorted for you.

These pathetic shallow men are just that, and are ex's for a reason! WHatever they felt or said needn't be of any consequence now!

Poppet48 Wed 27-Mar-13 13:56:27

Tell your midwife how you're feeling OP and ask to be referred to a dietician, They really helped me when I saw them with this pregnancy.

You need to think about your family, as hard as it may be it is a case of having a healthy pregnancy or potentially causing big problems for your baby.

bluer Wed 27-Mar-13 16:19:45

Oh sweetheart...you sound so miserable. Your dh will love you no matter what. You are doing an amazing thing and growing a whole new person grin
For what its worth I recently lost a lot of weight and now I'm pregnant I can feel it all pilling back on but I keep telling myself the baby is all that layers and if I can lose it one I can do it again!
You really do need to speak to your midwife or gp and get done support. Hope you feel better soon x

iloveitalia Wed 27-Mar-13 16:54:56

Aaah Moody, I'm so sorry to hear you're feeling so low. I was exactly the same as you in my last pregnancy. Have you had your 12 week scan yet?
If you haven't , I suggest that the day you go to hospital, you tell the doctor/ midwife that you NEED some help, because you are really struggling and have developed an unhealthy attitude to food, and you're frightened that this could have a negative impact on your unborn baby. Any doctor/nurse that doesn't respond to that isn't doing their job properly.
I ended up bursting into tears the day of my 20 week scan, and the hospital immediately gave me an appointment with a counsellor and also a telephone number which I was free to call at any time if I needed support. Really made a difference to me.
You MUST be honest with any medical staff you see...you need them to know how bad you're feeling, in order to get the support you need. I know you said that you hadn't had a great experience with your last counsellor, but they're all different. Just because you didn't like one, doesn't mean that another one can't help you.
You poor thing. My heart goes out to you. Hope you get the help you need really soon.

iloveitalia Wed 27-Mar-13 16:58:46

Oh sorry Moody. I just read that you haven't had your booking in appointment yet. Be brave then, and work out what you're going to say when you see the medical staff.

specialsubject Wed 27-Mar-13 17:13:46

no flame, you are ill and need help. Please get that help - ask your DH.

you need help because you are risking the baby's health, and yours, and body image issues will be passed on later. Your current and future children need a healthy mum.

good luck - there is no shame in being ill, it's not your fault.

whyno Wed 27-Mar-13 17:22:38

Christ!!! Go to your doctor ASAP and tell them all this. Poor you and poor baby.

sherazade Wed 27-Mar-13 18:41:17

If you are naturally petite, you can still be slim without starving yourself. If you fill up on fruit , veg and lean protein and get plenty of exercise , and breastfeed (if you want to) then you will not become huge and the weight will fall off post natally. You really don't need to starve yourself.

MoodyDidIt Thu 28-Mar-13 07:54:48

sorry to hear you were the same as me iloveitalia - but am almost glad that there was someone else like me, at the moment i feel like an absolute freak and a terrible person. as i said, i couldn't tell anyone in RL, i really feel people would judge me. how did you deal with it? was your baby OK?

i also just wanted to add, i am not starving myself or anything, when i say i am calorie counting, i mean i am sticking to about 1500 calories a day, and i am eating healthily, lots of fruit and veg etc.

and sheherazade, this is what i am trying to do. thing is, because i am so short, any extra weight is really noticeable, esp when i was pg. in my first pg i honestly looked like a beachball with legs.

it doesn't help when the media is always full of pictures of pregnant celebs looking amazing in pregnancy and still slim with tiny bumps. then pics soon after delivery in bikini's and stuff, ffs envy and angry

marriedinwhiteagain Thu 28-Mar-13 08:24:33

You will get the weight off pretty easily up to about 2 to 2.5 stone gain. If you are hungry it's a signal your body and your baby need food. Both of you need the food to maintain optimum health and especially for you so that you are able to look after the baby and other children later in pg and in the early days of the next.

Please get some help and seek some advice. Could you at least make sure you eat three sensible meals a day and have a hot chocolate or two inbetween. Not excessive intake but enough to keep you going.

FWIW when I got pg first time I was a recovered anorexic, mid thirties and at that time about 9 stone but taller than you. I put on 2.5 stone btw and due to an iron will I had the weight off again after six weeks.

Something I did that helped was that I nurtured the bits that weren't affected by the pg and showed off my legs by wearing shorter skirts than I usually would and paying more attention to my hair which seemed thicker than usual.

Remember that it's hard work to look after two dc and be pregnant and if that means gaining a stone more than last time it will be better for all of you. Don't let your first dh carry on having an impact.

Good luck

sherazade Thu 28-Mar-13 08:30:50

Op, i understand the extra pressure on us short women as every pound shows. I myself am only five feet tall, i weigh under 7 stones. I keep my weight down by going to the gym and eating as above. However i dont advocate being hungry or starving, i fill up amd get plenty of energy from oats and lentils. I have 'battled' with body image all my life and have finally learnt to eat and exercise in a way that doesnt run my body down.

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