Really need help. 26 weeks and desperate.(13 Posts)
Hi, I am 26 weeks into an unplanned third pregnancy and struggling tremendously. I have had depression and anxiety since the beginning and things have only gotten worse. I contemplated termination early on and honestly, I wish every day that I had gone through with it. I really don't want this baby. My other two will be 7.5 and 3.10, and I was so glad to be done with the baby phase (which I hate), and everything that goes along with it. I'm really unhappy with the age gaps and feel like dealing with the baby will constantly hold back my other two, especially the seven year old. I am honestly embarrassed to be pregnant, all my friends are done with babies and have moved on to more fulfilling lives, and I have no support and feel utterly alone.
My biggest fear is that I cannot live this baby and will always view him as a burden. I'm worried I'll always be thinking of things we could be doing or how much easier everything would be if we had only the older two, as was the plan. My DH has been wonderful and as supportive as possible, but I think he just doesn't know what to do anymore. Some days I feel I can barely get out of bed. Counseling has done little to help me.
I have been seriously thinking about and casually researching adoption. My family would be completely appalled and unsupportive of this, as I am happily married, financially stable, etc. I just don't want another baby (and yes, DH is already scheduled for vasectomy). My main concern with adoption would be the effect on my older two. I imagine it would be traumatic in some way and they wouldn't understand. It doesn't help to read all the sad stories of adoptees having abandonment issues later in life. Not to mention how I would explain things to everyone around me who knows I'm pregnant... Nevertheless, I still sometimes think I could be okay with it and sometimes I think it would be best. I just can't imagine actually binding with and not resenting this baby.
Every night I lie awake wishing for a way out, and every morning I have a panic attack as I realize what is happening all over again. I wish I could make it all go away. Is there any hope that I will ever recover from this and enjoy my life or family again? Please be kind in your responses. I know I sound horrible, ungrateful, and unworthy of having children. I could not feel any lower.
You poor love.
I'm 10 weeks further on than you, with somewhat older kids and a somewhat different situation in that this baby was not really unplanned although rather unexpected, and am also struggling, though I think not as much as you are. I posted a thread about it in Pregnancy (didn't think of coming to this topic, and now wondering why, a bit) last week. Will try and link.
Could I ask you - I know it's a personal question - what made you decide against termination earlier in the pregnancy? I'm no stranger to the thoughts of wishing one had terminated, so no judgement whatsoever implied.
What kind of counselling have you had?
I don't think I can provide you with a solution really (if I could, I wouldn't be having my own troubles) but I can perhaps help you think around things and give you some reassurance that you are not alone and that this has nothing to do with unworthiness or ingratitude. Pregnancy can be a wonderful thing but it does always exact a price, and it's as normal and natural to feel that price is too hard to pay as it is to long for nothing else.
Here's my thread (which I have just seen has received another post )
Thank you for your response, and I am so sorry you are struggling too. I wish I had a good answer for why I did not terminate. I think mostly, I feared that it was the "wrong" thing to do somehow - I've always been a rule follower and just felt like it would somehow scar my self-image. I also felt pressure from family (DH and my mom) to keep the baby, as they feared I would always live with regret/guilt if I terminated. Now I am realizing that any guilt or regret I would have felt would have been more bearable than what I am now facing. I went so far as to inquire about late-term abortions a few weeks ago, knowing it was not really something I could do, but feeling very desperate and anxious. Obviously I did not do that and I knew that I wouldn't when I called, but it's all part of that just wanting it to go away.
I had counseling with a private counselor, but our relationship was negatively affected when she forced me into a hospital visit when she thought my comments seemed suicidal. I feel she took things out of context, and I lost my ability to trust her, so have not been back (this was about six weeks ago).
Please let me know how you are doing as the weeks go by and you have your baby. I am absolutely terrified and I wish neither of us we're going through such a trying ordeal.
I'm sorry your relationship with your counsellor was disrupted. While she may have felt she needed to act as she believed you to be genuinely suicidal, I can understand that you felt that shook your trust in her. Were the hospital OK with you? How did you get on with the counsellor otherwise? I ask because if things were otherwise a good fit, it might be worth sticking with (or finding someone else) as I think you could really do with the support.
You say you're unhappy with the age gaps plural - do you mean also that between your existing dc, or just those between the baby and his siblings? What is it about them that daunts you the most? FWIW I know a couple of families with three children and 4-5ish years between each, and things seem to have worked out really well in each case.
Do you WOH? Is part of what is going on for you perhaps the sense of impending loss of parts of life you have for yourself? How much is your dh, or are members of your family, in a position to take some of the childcare pressure off you? I feel differently from you about the baby stage and am rather looking forward to the year 'off' work, although I do enjoy my job, so I can really only imagine the dread bound up with going into that when you don't like the idea of it at all. I don't want to patronise you either by assuring you breezily that it'll all be OK. It is likely to be quite tough. But it is a period that will pass.
Thanks for your feedback and support - it really is comforting to talk through this a bit with someone who understands. I have been thinking about giving it another shot with the counsellor, as she did help me during our sessions, but I have been reluctant because of the trust issues. It is something to think about. The hospital was honestly quite worthless and I didn't really gain anything from the experience. I do understand that my counsellor felt obligated to do what she did, but it made me feel so helpless and the whole night is a very negative memory for me.
As far as age gaps, I was initially disappointed with the gap between the first two, which was basically the result of temporary financial issues and then a miscarriage. It just seemed bigger and more awkward than the traditional two year gap, but in all honestly, it has worked out beautifully and I love it now. The second and third will have a similar gap, and while I'm trying to remind myself that it worked out well before, it's really just the seemingly huge spread from oldest to youngest, and the feeling that I will be raising a baby/toddler/ young child for so many years. I guess I am mourning for some of the things we had planned for the next few summers (weekend trips, etc .) that would have been great without the hassle of a crib, naps, cranky baby, etc. which now seem impossible for many more years. They each will be between 3.5-4 years apart , which doesn't seem huge, but the way their birthdays fall puts them each 4 years apart in school, so it seems like I will be dealing with different schools forever. I know all this sounds so trivial, but it is driving me crazy with worry. I will say that my older two are truly best buddies, despite the perceived bigger gap, and they play together better than I ever could have imagined. Maybe I'm worried a third will somehow rock the boat and disturb relationships? There is also the factor that all my children are/will be boys, and I'm ashamed to say I've had a bit of gender disappointment this time that has not helped the depression. However, I think being the same gender had helped my two bond and be really close, so maybe it's a good thing? A little sad that I will never have a daughter, admittedly.
I do think there is an impending loss of self for me, but perhaps the opposite if what you're experiencing. I have been staying at home since my oldest was born, so seven years now. I was really ready to take on some work, at least part time, in the near future and get back to more interaction with adults and the real world. All of that is it on hold now and will likely be set back significantly. I also feel sad about less time to connect with DH. We had our first baby very quickly after getting married and I felt like we were finally getting to the stage where we could have more flexibility for date nights or weekends away.
As far as the baby stage, I really, really struggle with sleep deprivation and it makes me very anxious and edgy. I hate the constant physical work of caring for an infant, terrified of colic (my first had it), have a love/hate relationship with breastfeeding (did it for a year with each of the first two), and just the loss of personal space and freedom.
Wow, I know this is long, thanks for letting me air all my worries. I think I just need reassurance that this baby will fit into our family, that I'll be happy we had him, and that I won 't view him as a burden.
I think a lot of what you post about sounds very hard to have to adjust to. Kids do impact on life, and the mother still tends to bear the brunt. What's your line of work, if you want to say? Any chance of doing some freelancing from home? How would you be fixed for affording some childcare so you could perhaps go back sooner than you thought? Mine will be going part-time to nursery at just over a year - we need my income - but I am in the lucky position of living in a country where childcare doesn't cost the ridiculous amounts it does in the UK. I am also massively privileged to work mainly from home.
The good relationship between your older two is likely to help them weather the experience of the new baby arriving and include him quite naturally, I think. 3 boys are great I am actually expecting a dd after 2 boys, so this is easy for me to say, and it's fine to be a bit sad that you will never get that 'other' parenting experience - but they will be a real team. Think of all the fairy tales based on three brothers I couldn't have cared less what sex mine is, but there was something in the idea of having three boys that I found very appealing.
That two-year gap - I have it between my older two and it is great in many ways, but not all it's cracked up to be - mine have now hit the stage of intense competition, with the younger one - who is also lagging behind a bit in maturity - intensely frustrated he can't do all the older one can and the older one not above being insufferably know-it-all-y. I think that competition and frustration loses its edge from a slightly larger gap, as the stages at which the two of them are at are more clearly distinct.
It seems to me - to go back to my first point - that a large part of you coming through the next few months and years will depend on you preserving a sense of your self in whatever way is possible. I wonder whether it's perhaps this you could be focusing on with your counsellor, if you felt able to go back to her (and I would certainly want to talk through why she referred you to hospital - if she is a professional she will be able to hear and acknowledge your feelings about this).
Hi Lou, I have lots in common with you, albeit I am 10 weeks behind you.
I have not had any counselling but I feel terrible. I will have 3 school years between them all which means different schools and doing a school runx2/3 for something like 10 years. I'm a SAHM aswell, was a career girl before then. We have no help and I never get any me time, hobbies etc. I hate being pregnant and am furious about it. Very angry with my DH. He's also now said he will get the snip.
Our house is not at all suitable for 3 kids. We only moved here recently and our funds to renovate and extend will not be accessible for at least another year. We have looked into getting the money quicker and it's just not possible, bank loans, parents etc won't lend us enough. We can't move as I will lose sibling privilege for the school we have and want for them all.
To top it off I have several medical problems relating to the pregnancy none of which had before. I am constantly at the midwives, gps or hospital.
I feel like I am in the midst of a sh*t storm.
To top it off we have had to cancel the holiday of a lifetime as its too close to my due date. It was a 'treat' from a relative and they've refused to reschedule it.
The only upsides I can think of are that I am hoping that the baby is easy and adorable and sleeps well. If it's a nightmare I am just thinking stuff it I will go back to work and pay for a nanny. That is perfectly normal nowadays. It is an option.
I wanted to terminate aswell, but I didn't as the private clinic refused to treat me and the waiting time on the NHS would have meant it happened at 12 weeks which I was uncomfortable with.
It is very hard to see the light. You are not alone in your thoughts at all.
OP, I really feel for you, but you made the decision to continue with the pregnancy, and now youre catastrophising. Having three children is ok. Having bigger age gaps is ok. Having unplanned pregnancies and even unwanted ones, is ok.
I had an unplanned and unwanted 3rd pregnancy, with antenatal depression. I felt pressured to not terminate. Shes the light of my life now. It took a while to bond, but she made me love her, thats what they do.
You are 26 weeks. The decision is made, and you made it. Theres going to have to be a certain amount of just getting on with it now.
Yes, I'm aware I need to get on with it. I surely wish it were that simple - would have done it months ago! I have moments of feeling the slightest bit okay, but when I really think of the realities of having another baby/child, things feel grim. I had a long talk with DH last night and really admitted all my feelings. I'm lucky he is wonderful. He thinks things will change for me when the baby is born, but if not, he sees no problem with adoption if I don't feel I can mentally cope. It would be quite a lot of explaining to do, but it makes me feel like I have an escape if things are dire.
Hi , may I ask how it's all going . Feel for everyone on here but so glad I found this hoping it provides some relief ! I have 3 older children age 13,15,21 so was very much past the baby stage ! Had lots of freedom life was good ! Been with DP one year and recently found out I am pregnant .. Well every single emotion under the sun ... Shock .. Guilt..ashamed ( old enough to know better !) have booked in for a termination consultation but I really don't think I will be able to do that , sends me into a massive panic , as well as having the baby does too ,I feel I can't do either ,, main concerns are my age (40) loss of freedom/ being able to work ... Also suffered pnd each time , each time got worse , with last dd I seriously thought I'd end up in mental hospital/ suicide .just don't know how I will cope I am not over maternal ... Love babies that aren't mine ..... And I'm so much older now .. At least the last ones I had age on my side.... DP is very confused too it's his first and he's 10 years younger , did not want kids . We had a great year together but looking back it was a fun relationship , we are always out or lazing around together it's seriously going to change ! I'm just in total panic mode cannot thing straight at all ... Feel I'm going crazy and symptoms are now starting ... I had terrible sickness with all 3 .. Thanks for the whinge guys ! On the plus I remember feeling similar to this each time and time DOES move on .. Things PASS I promise... ( I'm finding this hard to believe too !) to the original poster... I believe this new baby will slot into your family ... Like me I think you will have a tough time but once he's here and every thing has settled you prob won't imagine life without him .YOU WILL get there. I think it's well worth seeing about anti depressants if you haven't already ? I am going to be prepared for PND this time ,going to talk to the docs as they do help so much !! All the best please update your stories!
OP I messaged you. I know it is month later but please please let me know how everything turned out for you
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