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Termination of pregnancy at 24 weeks due to heart defect

(189 Posts)

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Lifehasitsproblems Sat 14-Oct-17 22:55:15

I live with this every day. 13 years ago at my 20 week scan I was told there was an echo on the baby's heart but that there was nothing to worry about. I had a three year old boy at the time and this was a much wanted second child. My gp suggested going for a private scan at the fetal medical centre to get a better understanding of what was happening. I was told that the baby, a boy, had transposition of the great arteries. In the womb he would be fine because he was receiving all the oxygen he needed from the umbilical chord but when he was born he would need key hole surgery followed by open heart surgery followed by regular further operation(s) on his heart to deal with scar tissue etc. He had a 59% chance of living to age 16. There was no guarantee of the quality of life he would have assuming he lived to 16 and beyond.

At 24 weeks (it took almost four weeks to get the appointment for the private scan and i needed a few days to make the decision) on Mothers Day, as it happened, I was taken for a final scan where they injected the baby's heart to stop it then induced me so that I gave birth.

The baby was tiny but perfectly formed to look at. We gave him a name and dressed him and ultimately we buried him.

My son who was three at the time vaguely remembers the little brother he lost. One of the biggest factors in making the decision was that I couldn't bear for my existing son to lose his brother. WIBU

Meow34 Sat 14-Oct-17 22:59:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Mum2OneTeen Sat 14-Oct-17 23:00:33

I'm so sorry for your loss flowers

NorthernLurker Sat 14-Oct-17 23:02:21

Well it sounds to me like you faced a terrible decision and took all the pain upon yourself rather than see either of your sons suffer. That's what being a mother is all about. You were not unreasonable.

SabineUndine Sat 14-Oct-17 23:02:39

What a hard decision to have to make. No of course you were not being unreasonable. You did what you felt was best. That’s all any of us could do in such a situation.

Goldfishshoals Sat 14-Oct-17 23:03:20

That must have been unbelievably tough for you flowers.

peachgreen Sat 14-Oct-17 23:03:49

OP you were not being unreasonable at all. You faced one of the hardest decisions anyone could ever make, where there is no right answer - and that means there’s no wrong one, either.

I am so sorry for the loss of your son. I can’t imagine how awful that was to go through. Sending you love. flowers

mogulfield Sat 14-Oct-17 23:03:50

I’m sorry for your loss Op. Of course you were not being unreasonable, you didn’t want to put a tiny baby through operation after operation with no guarantee it would work. You did what any mother would do and made the best decision you could flowers

Out of interest, you mention it was some time ago, what’s made you bring this up now? Did you have good support and counselling after your loss?

HerRoyalNotness Sat 14-Oct-17 23:04:40

You can't undo it, so whether it was wrong or right is irrelevant. Have you had counselling for this? Maybe that would help.

PsychoPumpkin Sat 14-Oct-17 23:06:53

It sounds like you’ve been carrying a great deal of pain and guilt for a long time, you were not unreasonable, you made what You thought was the best decision for your family at the time, went through something absolutely heart breaking and physically tough. I’m so sorry flowers

GilligansKitchenIsland Sat 14-Oct-17 23:07:18

OP, I'm a midwife and have recently looked after a woman in a similar situation to yours. I wouldn't wish it on anyone - it's an impossible decision to make. You WNBU at all; nobody in the world has the right to think that you were. I'm so sorry you went through this and I'm so sorry for the loss of your sweet boy. Does your older son talk much about his memories of that time?

Graceflorrick Sat 14-Oct-17 23:07:20

OP, you did what you thought best in a difficult situation. Don’t question your decision. Really thinking of you.

Katinkka Sat 14-Oct-17 23:08:33

You’re so brave. Xxx

Neolara Sat 14-Oct-17 23:10:36

What a horrendous decision you faced. I'm sorry you had to deal with that. It sounds like none of the options were going to be good and that you chose what you believed to be the least bad option.

Lime19 Sat 14-Oct-17 23:11:04

Sorry for what you've been through. Not unreasonable at all. You did what you thought was best. I'm so so sorry. What a horrid thing to go through.

kuniloofdooksa Sat 14-Oct-17 23:11:05

One if the worst parts of having to make heartbreaking decisions like this is when you start second-guessing yourself years later.

You made the best decision you could at the time. The person you are now is very different from the person you were then. Look on that person with compassion, don't judge her. Be kind to yourself. You are OK.


HeyRoly Sat 14-Oct-17 23:11:42

You did such a brave and selfless thing. You took on a lifetime of suffering so that your baby would not. Remember that.

TaliZorahVasNormandy Sat 14-Oct-17 23:14:31

Sometimes, the hardest decision is the best one. You saved that tiny little boy a lifetime of operations.

KoolKoala07 Sat 14-Oct-17 23:16:04

You were most definitely not being unreasonable. Having a termination has caused you heartache but losing your son before he turned 16 would have also caused much heartache. You were faced with an extremely difficult decision and you chose what was right for you. flowers

CurlyWurlyHairCoveredChocolate Sat 14-Oct-17 23:17:14

I cried reading your OP sad My heart goes out to you, what an awful decision to have had to make.

What you did was so brave, and must have been so painful. I hope it brings some comfort that I think in those circumstances I'd have done the same flowers

Jb291 Sat 14-Oct-17 23:19:58

I'm so very sorry for your loss OP. No words can take away your grief or your sorrow but keeping the memory of your precious little one alive might help bring you some comfort. You went through the worst loss any parent can face and I know that time doesn't always ease the pain. Please be kind and gentle to yourself and remember that the choices you made were the right ones.

TheDowagerCuntess Sat 14-Oct-17 23:20:37

You were not unreasonable - I hope you know that in yourself.

Are you OK? flowers

DaisyDrip Sat 14-Oct-17 23:21:49

Oh love, no of course you WNBU. You had a horrid decision to make a decision in an ideal world no mum and dad should ever have to make. flowers

DameFanny Sat 14-Oct-17 23:31:18

You made the decision out of love for your baby and your son. Don't second guess yourself for love flowers

Hebenon Sat 14-Oct-17 23:33:36

Of course you were not unreasonable. You were immensely brave and you did what you thought was right. Nobody could ask for more. I am very very sorry indeed for your loss and for having to make that awful decision.

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