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Can't stop thinking about it.

(13 Posts)
Giraffeears Mon 24-Sep-12 21:50:44

I have a beautiful 17 day old ds. I should be ecstatic but instead I can't stop crying over the birth I wanted and the birth I had.

Planned a relaxing, intervention free home water birth - ended up with a 64 hour labour, anterior cervical lip, transfer into hospital for an epidural where obstructed labour is discovered, babies head still not fully engaged despite 58 hours of painful 5-6 minute contractions. Baby became distressed so rushed in for emcs had 2l pph due to length of labour then had a second pph the next morning needed 7 unit blood transfusion and further emergency surgery.

I haven't managed to breast feed as no colostrum until day 6 and no milk until day 10. I'm told this is due to the massive blood loss. Ds had to have ff or starve and now can't latch and my supply is pants. I am expressing what I can and giving that before formula.

I'm feeling pretty crap about the whole situation but in need to start moving on for my own sanity. DH has been wonderfully supportive i just need someone to tell me I'll feel better soon!

littone Mon 24-Sep-12 22:07:59

17 days after birth is very early to be "over" giving birth. I can't imagine having a 64 hour labour, thankfully I got any with less than that, but I had a pph (estimated loss 3l) when my son was 5 days old and took me a long time to get well. I had been breast feeding but offering formula top ups as my milk didn't come in (now thought to be due to retained placenta) and then milk dried up whilst I was going through the pph. I did manage to restart breast feeding though, by offering breast at each feed adn then offering formula, eventually we didn't need the formula! Well done you for expressing, have never managed to do more than a few ounces! You have a massive physical recovery to do from such a long labour and birth let alone the pph and surgery - if all that had happened through anything else other than birth you would be resting permenantly! I was only allowed home on the promise I did nothing for a further week. Like your DH, mine was wonderful but still difficult to cope with. Get as much rest as you can, even if you can't sleep. x

frazzledbutcalm Mon 24-Sep-12 22:08:41

You will feel better soon thanks
Try not to dwell on what went wrong, concentrate on the fact that you have a healthy beautiful baby boy. My 4dc thrived on formula so try not to beat yourself up about formula. Sometimes we have to just accept the situation we have. You will feel better soon. Just keep looking at ds and smile at him smile

ButtonBoo Mon 24-Sep-12 22:09:43

Oh my lovely. You had a rotten time of it. Sounds awful.

It's great that DP is supportive. Makes a real difference. Especially when you're all hormonal and teary and worrying about your new baby.

DD's arrival wasn't smooth running either and rocky a long story short I had failed induction, ARM, long labour, fetal distress and then EMCS. It took a little while to not constantly dwell on it and I kept telling myself to 'sort it out and move on'. I did suddenly have a clear day where it just clicked that it was what it was, I can't change it and yes, it was bloody shit but DD is here and worth every crappy second. Not saying you can just switch it off but it did just click with me when DD was about 3-4 weeks.

On a practical level you might consider speaking to your post-natal mw or HV. They can put you in touch with org's that might be helpful. Or your GP. You could also see a lactation consultant or go to one of the community breastfeeding drop-in sessions re building up your milk supply. If you want you can also ask for a debrief with the hospital and they can talk you through why things happened the way they did.

These early days are tough. I hope you have some good days soon but if you are still feeling like this in a week or so, speak to your GP.

Take care...

mom2rhysnruby Mon 24-Sep-12 22:25:52

You WILL feel better soon
I was the same, i lacked a bond at first as i had a horrid birth with my son & didnt hold him for a while after, but now i look back... They could of chopped all my limbs off with a butter knife if it meant my son arriving safely!!
Id do it all again in an instant for my boy & in time you will feel the same, you dont think you can love your child more, then wait until tomorrow

smile x

RegLlamaOfBrixton Tue 25-Sep-12 09:17:22

You poor, poor thing. Not as bad as your experience, but I had a long labour and difficult birth with DS 19 months ago, to cut a long story short...52 hours of labour, managed with TENs, G&A and in water but was absolutely exhausted from being awake for 2 nights, ended in 2 hours of pointless pushing, transferred to theatre which took a further 2 hours and had a spinal block and rotational forceps delivery as DS had his head stuck in an unbirthable position. My physical recovery was very quick but I was badly traumatised by the experience. The feeling I had 'failed' at giving birth was overwhelming and like you I was constantly in tears at the thought of the birth I hadn't had. There was this enormous gap between my expectations and what actually happened. I also felt like a terrible person because I felt like people would think I was ungrateful for my beautiful healthy son, and found it difficult to bond with him.

I found a debrief with a MW going through my notes with me incredibly helpful, it helped me to get straight in my head precisely what happened and why things turned out the way they did. Posting on MN and reading through other's experiences helped me to see that I wasn't alone for feeling like this, I hadn't realised how incredibly common it is for first births to be difficult, even for women whose pregnancy has been completely straightforward. Talking with supportive friends was also very helpful. Time is a great healer, you begin to move on, but it took me until I went back to work 11 months later to really feel like myself again.

I do still think about the birth every day, moreso at the moment as DC2 is due in 10 weeks...eek! But it doesn't feel so all-important now, just a tiny part of the 19 months DS and I have known each other. A straightforward intervention-free birth would be great this time, but my expectations are lower, and I hope I will just accept whatever happens at the time, without beating myself up if things aren't 'perfect'.

Get as much rest as you can, keep talking about it if you feel you need to, and hang on in there, it WILL get better. Re the breastfeeding, have you tried posting on the breastfeeding board on here about trying to increase your supply? There are some very knowledgeable people on there.

Take care and hope you feel better soon. x

Giraffeears Tue 25-Sep-12 22:35:24

Thank you all for your replies. Feeling a lot better today, a lot less tearful, took ds to a cranial osteopath today - she thinks he faired quite well all things considered she was more concerned with me! I think that helped as she needed me to talk factually through my labour to make her assessment. So it felt like I was able to offload a bit.

wheresmespecs Wed 26-Sep-12 08:48:41

You have had a very rough time of it.

I think it would help to talk to someone - you can ask your Gp for a counsellor or find one privately. It doesn't mean anything is 'wrong', it's just it may be easiest for you - you may well have good close friends you can talk to about it, but it's worth remembering that everyone will have an opinion, which may not always be helpful.... a counsellor will let you talk and be sensitive.

It's probably useful to try and identify what about the experience you found most upsetting - was it loss of control, the change of environment, expectations versus reality, fear, etc etc? It's alright to say you hated it all and it was overwhelming! you don't have to 'please' or placate anyone with your answers, it is just so you can get perspective on a traumatic experience.

newby2 Wed 26-Sep-12 08:51:21

Well done, that was an excellent idea. He'll be a robust little fella and will need just a little bit more input to counter-act the trauma for a while but most importantly he needs you to be strong for him which means getting things straight and into perspective.

I find taking things little by little and not trying to open Pandora's box immediately helpful, closing it is always hard if you've opened the whole thing. That's fine if you don't then have a newborn to deal with. Your memories will change too as the hormones settle and time really does heal.

Cut yourself some slack, you're doing brilliantly. People who sail through delivery and haven't had such a close shave as yourself find themselves in tears all the time too- you're definitely entitled to be shocked and tearful!

golemmings Wed 26-Sep-12 09:37:22

I'm sorry you're going through this.

I think 'traumatic' birth is not that uncommon and that a lot of people don't get the birth they want. But people don't talk about it. I didn't get the birth I wanted either time and was told to stop being ridiculous and to get over myself by a friend when I said I felt i'd failed my children. Funnily enough I've not spoken much to her since.

I spent the first 5 weeks of DS's life in tears but it got better in time and talking through both my labours with a midwife really helped.

I also took DS to a cranial osteo and she was brilliant with him, with me and so encouraging about my relationship with him.

DS is almost a year old now. I still have regrets about the birth and not having the one I wanted (there's still a bit of me that wants dc3 to see if I can do it right better) but it is less consuming than it was. I'd also like to be able to sing in tune and draw but that's not going to happen either. In the meantime I have 2 fabulous children.

In the early days it is one step at a time but it will get easier and whilst it may still matter to you it won't be the defining characteristic of your gorgeous little boy.

daytoday Wed 26-Sep-12 10:07:19

OH honey, poor you. What an exhausting experience no wonder you are feeling completely wiped out.

It is very natural to go over the birth - and it is very natural to take time to come to terms with your own experience. My youngest is 18 months and I feel I am finally putting to bed my experience, which probably manifested in post-natal anxiety.

Cry - take all the support and help you need - and give yourself time. Your body has been through something serious - it will affect how you feel, as you are depleted. And all this after a 9 month pregnancy where the baby draws everything it needs from your body.

I would suggest you ask a friend or a midwife to put you in touch with a sympathetic breastfeeding expert/councillor - I'm not sure what they are called? My SIL had a hard birth and found having someone come to her house and help her fantastic. They also had a weekly meeting and my SIL found that the meeting was full of women who had experienced difficult labours etc -

idlevice Sat 29-Sep-12 23:33:53

I had a crap labour & delivery, 3l PPH, 6 unit transfusion & went to surgery after for manual removal of placenta, then at 5 wks I had to have a D&C to remove old blood left behind. I felt so rubbish & couldn't understand how other new mums were up & about going out for coffee & shopping etc Don't underestimate the effect of massive blood loss. No-one medical told me at the time but since I have learnt it takes about 6mths to recover. Just think if you had had such a blood loss from a car accident or something, you'd be recovering for ages & wouldn't even have a baby to look after!

Luckily bf-ing worked for me & I loved it, so I would recommend keep perservering with it - try to find a bf counsellor/midwife/lactation consultant that you "gel" with & can offer you 1-to-1 support & home visits. Try to get practical support for you at home so you can rest, really rest, as much as possible, eat well, & don't do anything other than look after yourself & babe until you feel you can or would like to widen your horizons. Take a good iron supplement - the best type is called haeme iron as it;s most effectively absorbed, a bit pricier than your bog-standard supplements but worth it for the short term. Make sure you have follow up blood tests to check how you're doing too. Take care!

maxijazz Sun 30-Sep-12 20:47:20

You will feel better. Really you will. Just go easy on yourself, you're only 17days post birth, your hormones are still all over the place and your body is recovering from major trauma.

Try to focus on what you have, a gorgeous baby to love, nurture and parent for the rest of your life. You can do this no matter how he came into the world and no matter how he is fed, but would also suggest seeing a breast feeding specialist, I know someone who was able to resume breast feeding her baby who was born 10week prem with the help of BF specialists and support groups so it is possible when it's got off to a less than perfect start.

Every time you feel down about it look at your baby's sleepy contented face and know that the fact he is here is one of natures miracles. It'll get easier to accept as the days/weeks go by.

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