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To feel wracked with guilt for letting my DD down

(79 Posts)
PinotMwah Sat 26-May-18 13:51:46

I posted on here a week or so ago about my DD (7) who has a horrific chronic cough which goes on for weeks and weeks. It's an ongoing saga - initially thought to be asthma but now not suspected. No cause has yet been identified despite an ongoing investigation and nothing works for it. When it happens its utterly debilitating -- neither of us sleep for days or weeks on end and we can't do anything. I'm a LP and no family around who can help so its all down to me.

We're now into the third week of this and last night again, after thinking we were over the worst, I had a night of almost no sleep due to the coughing. I am nearly deranged with sleep deprivation. At about 2.30am I kicked my bathroom door several times in rage and frustration. My neighbour (who is a bit of a nosy parker but may have just been being nice) has messaged me to ask if I'm OK.

I feel utterly appalled with myself. I asked DD today for her forgiveness -- I'm not sure if she heard me kick the door but for not going to be with her. She said she forgave me but that I had let her down a bit. But I feel that I am not fit to be her mother and almost wonder if I need to call social services on my own behalf.

I know I need to sort myself out and calm down. But how bad is this? Do I need to see a psychiatrist or is this something which will pass when things get back to normal?

Amanduh Sat 26-May-18 13:55:32

You didn’t let her down.
Sleep deprivation is awful - that’s why they use it as torture!
You let your anger out, it didn’t put anyone in danger, noone was hurt. It happens.
Please stop being so hard on yourself. You didn’t need to apologise to your daughter. There isn’t anything wrong with you. flowers

PorkFlute Sat 26-May-18 13:57:42

Sounds awful but I wouldn’t worry. It seems like a very stressful situation and kids are very forgiving of less than stellar moments from otherwise great parents.
What is happening when she is awake all night? Is she off from school and catching up on sleep in the day?
I’d be tempted to get into bed with her and some earplugs and tell her to nudge you if she needs you but at least the coughing wouldn’t be constantly disturbing you.
I hope you get some answers and rest!

Ohmydayslove Sat 26-May-18 13:58:27

For goodness sake op don’t be ridiculous. I kick the bathroom door for lots less than that. Sleep deprivation is bloody awful and why on earth did you apologise to your dd? She’s probably totally pissed off too poor kid.

Keep onto your doctor though to get this sorted and be good to yourself flowers

ToothyMcPuthy Sat 26-May-18 13:58:44

OP, you’re only human - a knackered one.

You haven’t let DD down at all. You’re been there for her every night so far.

Is there anyone who could have her overnight so that you can get some sleep? Sleep deprivation is awful - please don’t be so hard on yourself flowersbrew

onalongsabbatical Sat 26-May-18 14:02:02

Oh, you poor love. You really, really haven't let her down, sleep deprivation plus the worry must be wearing you out. Honestly I’d like to think that if I were in your position I’d be able to trust the neighbour’s good intentions and reach out to them, is it a woman with kids? Maybe she could even have yours for an afternoon and you could have a nap and a bit of space. Honestly, if I were your neighbour and you were struggling with this I’d help out if I could.
I certainly don’t think you need a psychiatrist or social services. You need a bit of support and some good nights of sleep. I’m so sorry. flowers

Pinkkahori Sat 26-May-18 14:21:48

I sympathise greatly. I have a dd with asthma and I know how wearing a night time cough can be.

I'm going to make a few suggestions based on our experience. Apologies if you've tried/heard all these already.

Ventolin - has she been given an inhaler? I know of plenty of people who have been prescribed it for use with a cough without a diagnosis of asthma.
Antihistamine - have you tried any? Maybe a chat with the pharmacist about what might help. She may have post nasal drip that's causing the cough.
Air purifier - maybe she is irritated by something in the air.
Humidifier/Dehumidifier - the air may be too dry or too damp for her.

Just a few suggestions.
Hope you find something that works.

YetAnotherSpartacus Sat 26-May-18 14:24:12

Probably not helpful, but has she been checked for GERD or a hiatus hernia? has she tried sleeping on an elevated bed (blocks under one end) and taking Gaviscon before bed?

youarenotkiddingme Sat 26-May-18 14:29:12

There's nothing wrong with you!

You're exhausted!

And being exhausted means you'll now overreact to yourself!

Open all windows, close curtains to keep humidity out, pick a film and dose on sofa next to DD.

Pinkkahori Sat 26-May-18 14:29:59

That's a good call Spartacus.

Blueflorals Sat 26-May-18 14:30:40

Christ, you kicked the bathroom door because of your ill child?

Can you imagine if a man posted this?

AnnieAnoniMouser Sat 26-May-18 14:31:47

You’re being ridiculously hard on yourself & a bit...what’s the word...daft? There was NO need to ask your 7 year old for forgiveness. You didn’t batter her, you simply didn’t go running straight to her. It’s not a crime. There’s very little you can do for her, except be there as ‘moral support’. Weeks & weeks of this is a living nightmare for you both. Sleep deprivation is used as a form of TORTURE for a very good reason.

You don’t need SS, you need a Dr that’s listening and doing more. See another GP, get some different referrals etc.

I have a dry cough at the moment from some medicine they gave me while in hospital. I’m pissed off because this is a known side effect, but they give it anyway as it’s the cheapest drug if it’s type. Anyway, it’s a long, boring story, but basically I only know that’s the cause of my cough from finding it online, then my GP confirming it, the hospital wouldn’t admit it when the cough started. Can you think of ANYTHING your DD was given that was different than she had ever had before. I never would have linked this cough to taking a few tablets a month ago.

Stay strong, you’re a great mum doing a fantastic job 💐

CandleWithHair Sat 26-May-18 14:34:17

@Blueflorals nice try but that was exceptionally weak goady fuckery. Now GTFO.

Gitfeatures Sat 26-May-18 14:38:46

You are catastrophising massively - I am exactly the same when sleep deprived.

You don't need a psychiatrist, social services or character assassination. You need some sleep.

OneWouldHopeSo Sat 26-May-18 14:40:37

flowers. Tell your most neighbour you banged into the door. You sound totally normal and doting.

3luckystars Sat 26-May-18 14:41:01

Have you a nebuliser?

Please, I know you are tired but will you consider getting one and giving her ‘pulmacort’ before going to bed at night. (Obviously discuss this with your doctor and get the prescription)

Go back to your doctor and tell them that you can’t cope anymore and it’s not fair on your daughter being awake either.

Ask them for pulmacort respules for the nebuliser. You can buy a nebuliser in Argos or even Lidl. Please try this. I know you will get loads of good advice here and I really hope you get this sorted.

Just try this for even one or 2 nights and see if it helps. I’m so sorry you are going through this, I was sleep deprived for years (for another reason) and it was so awful, I can fully understand what you are going through.
Best wishes to you and your daughter.

PinotMwah Sat 26-May-18 14:50:05

Thanks everyone, really appreciate it. I know I'm catastrophizing a little bit but today for the first time I wondered if I was losing the plot.

pinkahhori yes, tried everything you can imagine, from steroids to lemon and honey, raised pillows to a humidifier. There is nothing I haven't tried.

She has a Ventolin inhaler and it can sometimes take the edge off but doesn't really work. This is one of the reasons they increasingly suspect it isn't asthma, because asthmatics generally respond pretty well to Ventolin. It also isn't allergy-triggered, so the usual triggers like dust/pollens etc aren't at play here.

It's absolute torture. The one thing I've always prided myself on is separating my frustrating with the cough from anger at her and last night I think I crossed a line.

luckystars for now, until the investigation has concluded, they won't give her anything stronger than Ventolin and Clenil (because they suspect it isn't asthma). So for example a lot of people have recommended Montelukast but they won't give her that.

She's supposed to be having a bronchoscopy but for various reasons its been cancelled twice in the past three months. I'm going to pay to do it privately to get past this as soon as she's well enough, but I need her to have recovered from the cough in order to do this. At the moment it feels like the cough will go on forever.

I've had various well-meaning school mums suggest to me that she is too unwell to be in school etc and recommending I take her out. I work full time in a very stressful environment and have had two days off sick in the past week to deal with this already, my employer is understanding but I simply can't justify this any more.

Doodlebug5 Sat 26-May-18 14:52:29

It's not something like sleep apnea is it? Maybe a form of that. I do feel for you and you haven't let her down at all. Sleep deprivation is not something that should be taken lightly

musicposy Sat 26-May-18 14:52:51

Have they tested for whooping cough? DD had that at 5 (despite having been vaccinated, it's possible) and was so ill she ended up in hospital for a few days.

They call it the cough of 100 days and the worst thing was the relentlessness of it. It went on and on and on, sleepless night after sleepless night and the sheer worry of it and the feeling it will never end really gets to you.

Don't take to heart that your DD said you'd let her down a bit. They think mummy is like a magic being at that age, able to make anything better and always be there for them - she won't have any understanding of your sheer exhaustion.

I don't know if I can advise much except to take life as easy as possible when you can. If the house goes to pot for a bit, so what, that can wait. Keep telling yourself you'll get through it. Because it will pass, whatever it is. It'll sort itself out, or they'll eventually find a cause, or a treatment. Having been where you are, I think it will pass if you can hang in there. If you think you really are going to put yourself in danger, then get help. flowers

LifeBeginsAtGin Sat 26-May-18 14:55:24

There was a TV programme years ago following kids with dust related asthma.

As en experiment they stripped the childrens rooms and removed as mush fabric as possible: soft toys out, carpet to lino, curtains to plastic blinds, divan bed to metal framed. They also changed the sofa for a leather one ... - you get the gist.

There was a significant improvement if the childrens health - so much I never forgot the programme.

Would it be worth trying any of these suggestions in your daughters room?

PinotMwah Sat 26-May-18 14:57:46

musicposy they did suggest I could test for that although the consultant said her symptoms suggested it wasn't that. But there is apparently a test you can do and if there's no improvement by Monday I will try that.

I suspect not, though. It comes at the tail end of most viral infections she gets -- the cold itself is not a big deal but there is weeks and weeks of coughing after it finishes. It literally takes over my life and renders me completely incapable of functioning. Then its OK for a few months and then back to square one when she's next ill. I've become mega neurotic about exposing her to other kids with infections -- obsessive handwashing and wiping -- because the fallout from a cold is hideous.

3luckystars Sat 26-May-18 14:58:38

You don’t need to have asthma for a nebuliser with pulmacort.

It can be used for babies with croup. And a million and one things that are not asthma. It is worth trying this to see if it improves her cough, then you will know without question that the pulmacort is improving the cough and you will have more information to help with the investigation.

PinotMwah Sat 26-May-18 14:59:00

LifeBegins I would be willing to try that except she's tested negative for dust allergy (along with all other allergies). I might get her retested, but based on the initial test readings it would seem that's unlikely to be the cause.

ExecutiveDiamondBossBabeHun Sat 26-May-18 14:59:11

You kicked a bathroom door and you're beating yourself up about it. Seriously. It was door and you were extremely tired. Honestly you haven't let her down and I doubt she feels you have really. You need to give yourself a break!!!!

KoshaMangsho Sat 26-May-18 14:59:12

Does Piriton make her drowsy enough to fall asleep? We had a night time cough for three months last year. We used the inhaler and Piriton and dehumidifier and eventually it went away. I am assuming though you have tried the anti allergics already.

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