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To ask do you ever really recover from PND?

(14 Posts)
Memyselfandiiiiii Tue 18-Apr-17 12:43:54

Just that really!

Baby is one now. Had so many dark times over the summer last year, and finally started to feel better when she was around 6 months. Day to day I get by well, am back at work in quite a professional job part time and love seeing her after work and on my days off.

But I just feel like a totally different person now. I have never suffered from depression before, and I don't think I'll ever get 'me' back?! I can't make decisions, I have no self confidence in the way I look or my skills, feel like my life's over in terms of my career, get anxious at the thought of having to make a decision to the extent I just procrastinate.

Hoping someone can tell me it gets better?!

TigerInTheSnow Tue 18-Apr-17 12:52:53

It will get better. But it may take a long time. A year is not very long. But you will get yourself back. Have you had any support - been offered CBT, support group etc?

DunedinGirl Tue 18-Apr-17 13:03:32

Yes, it does get better but I agree that it takes time- in my experience having someone who I felt safe talking to about how I was feeling was a massive part of the recovery, particularly after baby had turned one.

Dulra Tue 18-Apr-17 13:14:39

It does get better but like others have said it takes time. I have 3 dds suffered with pnd on all 3 (undiagnosed on first) and as they have got older I have felt more like myself again. But tbh and I think this goes for all mums whether they have pnd or not something changes when you have a child and you are different to the person you were before . I don't think that person comes back it is just a new stage of your life and you change to deal with it.

If you find though you are still struggling a bit with anxiety it might be worth looking into supports that can help deal with that such as cbt

OldandJaded Tue 18-Apr-17 13:15:29

It does take a long time, and I have never been the same person after my dd came along - I don't think that's the pnd rather being a parent in my case.
It does get better, it's a very far reaching illness and you're doing great to be where you are after a year, well done to you. Do you have supporting family/friends? I do and it helps a lot. One thing a friend who'd been through it said to me is that just because you've got or had pnd doesn't mean you can't have a bad day, and that bad day doesn't mean you're going backwards. I used to panic every time I felt sad, pissed off or angry - but learned that as long as it's not prolonged then it's just a moment in time and you are allowed to feel like that sometimes, hell it's normal to feel that way sometimes.
flowers just because we all deserve them sometimes!

FaithAgain Tue 18-Apr-17 13:17:00

It got better for me. I found having DD so tough. I cried all the time. She cried whenever she was put down! I wondered how she could be happy and smile when I was so sad. But she got bigger, she started sleeping better, we got the right medication for her reflux. I did have medication for a bit which helped. I had counselling too. I was better when I could leave her and get some time to myself. I went back to work, which actually helped because then I had time to miss her if that makes sense? It wasn't overnight, but gradually it got easier. We are very close now (she's 4yo). She's still very cuddly but not so needy. She's absolutely gorgeous! (Ha she just interrupted me writing this for a cuddle). It does get better. I found a different job in the end because I couldn't settle back in my old job which is definitely better for me.

FittonTower Tue 18-Apr-17 13:23:23

Have you had any counselling of any kind? I didn't have PND but I did have ptsd as a result of a horribly traumatic birth and I felt that it had fundementally changed my personality and outlook on life and l, to an extent, my children. I physically recovered from what happened to me but it was over a year before I really realised that the flashbacks and nightmares and triggering was not normal, but neither was my reaction to them and the way I was living my day-to-day life in a miserable daze.
I sought help and got proper treatment with a phycologist, it was really really hard work but I'm now 6 months on from the end of the treatment and I'm a changed person - I'm back to much more like my old self.
It will get better but don't be afraid to ask for help

Dorje Tue 18-Apr-17 13:23:43

Yes, I recovered completely when I went back on the combined pill when I weaned from breastfeeding.

I had progesterone intolerance, and I was so relieved to hear theat PND isn't anything to do with your feelings for your baby, or how you feel about being a mother, it's just hormonal.

Professor Studd, based in London, and head of the British gynaecology association, has a lot to say about it. Sorry I don't have his website address but you can google? Very interesting research and happily easy to treat.

Good luck.

Fairylea Tue 18-Apr-17 13:25:02

I had very severe pnd after having my dd 13 years ago now. It took me about 2 years of taking a very high dose anti depressant and counselling to feel functional and I would say another 3 years after that to feel happy again. It is definitely possible to get better. I was on such a high dose of citalopram that they don't even prescribe it that high anymore.

Rednailsandnaeknickers Tue 18-Apr-17 13:25:24

I'm not sure if we ever "recover" from PND - i.e. go back to exactly the person we were before - I don't think so, partly because becoming a parent for the first time or extending your family with more children is such a life-changing experience anyway. I think people who exclaim that "the baby won't change them" are rather sad and short sighted - one of the amazing things about children is the way they change you, challenge you, make you think about yourself and your beliefs, values, ethics etc as you try to raise this little person to be a functioning adult.
Certainly I've found that the experience of PND, while horrific at the time, has given me a greater understanding of the fragility of mental health, more compassion, more awareness of others views and insecurities. I think this has made me a better person, more open to listening to others experiences.
But the crippling anxiety/procrastination, yes I know that! My son is several years older now but I still have those days. It's who I am now, I acknowledge it, I'm kind to myself, give myself a break and do what I can. Other days I put the cape back on and be SuperWoman grin
Keep talking, keep reaching out for support, be aware of your needs and most of all, know that life is always about change. You won't be this way forever but nobody ever is. Take each day at a time, celebrate the little wins and don't let bad days take on too much significance. We all have them.

evilgiraffe Tue 18-Apr-17 13:27:05

Oh OP, all that sounds so familiar. I had (have) PND with DD2, she has recently turned one, and I'm still not back to normal. I worry that I don't/won't/can't love her as much as I do DD1 (no PND with her). Also she's a much more determined person than my eldest, much more likely to get angry/upset when thwarted from doing what she wants to do, which I find very hard. I worry that my reaction is not "oh my baby let's have a cuddle" but more "shut up". Being a SAHM may not help - perhaps if I could get some space away from her more often it would help. I had a bit of (private) counselling last year, I may try a bit more, although it wasn't hugely helpful for me. I am very disappointed in how little my midwives and the NHS in general seemed to care.

I'm very much hoping it changes as she gets older, the other responses here are encouraging. In the meantime, flowers for you and me both smile

Morphene Tue 18-Apr-17 13:33:50

It certainly can get better.

It took me 5 years though!

My advice is to get good treatment and as fast as you can.

If it has lasted this long then it probably isn't the sort of PND that is a response to hormones, lack of sleep, change in routine etc.

So it may be depression linked to trauma (was the birth/pregnancy/postnatal period traumatic?) or role loss (did you have a lot of self-esteem tied up in a role you no longer have eg. work / social / hobbies).

FittonTower Tue 18-Apr-17 13:38:14

And like faithagain I changed jobs. That seemed to help too.

ADayGivingMeHope Tue 18-Apr-17 13:50:37

I absolutely promise it does get better. It was just after my DC turned 2 that I could honestly say I felt genuinely happy and not just the faking it happy that I'd been doing since DC was born!

I also found a career that I love and have been focusing on that, so that's something positive in my life to focus on which has made a MASSIVE difference!

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