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Not coping/feeling cheated by c section

(12 Posts)
CustardCreamLover Thu 07-Feb-19 18:31:57

Hi all I'm looking for some support and/or advice.

I'm an expat in Poland and just had my first baby. He was delivered by c section 5 weeks early. We spent 8 days in hospital and we've now been home just over a week. He's 17 days old, suffered from quite bad jaundice and lost nearly 10% of his birth weight. He's getting better and the midwife is very happy with his progress.

However, the more time that goes on the more I'm struggling to deal with what happened. I had already been in hospital 2 days for monitoring when they gave us about an hours notice that he would need to be delivered. We were both in shock and unfortunately my husband couldn't be with me for the procedure as is normal here. So I had a c section, saw my baby for about a minute before he was taken to the nicu and spent the next 24 hours alone without my baby or husband. I speak some polish but not much medical polish. I had a run in with a physiotherapist which resulted in me crying hysterically.

Now I'm home with my baby and husband I'm beginning to feel very cheated out of the last few weeks of my pregnancy and cheated out of the experience of child birth. I wasn't ready to have him and I feel like I failed him by not carrying him to term. I know he's healthy and I love him so much I'm just really not coping with how he arrived. I'm well aware that it could have been much worse but it also could have been much better.

Anyone have some pearls of wisdom or their own story?

OP’s posts: |
HoustonBess Thu 07-Feb-19 20:36:31

I'm sorry you've had such a hard time flowers

I had a c-section, didn't involve NICU or early birth or being alone but was hard enough anyway. I think you're left with a kind of emptiness because you don't have the glowy first baby cuddles or sense of achievement and there are important hormonal processes that go on during birth that you miss out on. It's disempowering and you feel like the birth is just something that happens to your body rather than something you're actively involved with.

It's ok to be full of rage and sorrow about it. It's also true that at some point you have to accept what happened and stop dwelling on it, but for now you need to process it and that means really feeling the feelings. After a few weeks I suddenly just felt like a cloud had lifted and I wasn't so angry and involved with the birth any more.

Really hope you can be kind to yourself and get through this. You haven't failed one iota.

ColdCottage Thu 07-Feb-19 20:46:37

You've been thought a very tough time on top of what is already a huge change and hormonal time.

Be kind to yourself. Try and live in the moment and focus on recovery and enjoying your baby now. Don't dwell on the past for now, you can't change it and you can reflect a little later when you are stronger and more clear headed (it's a bit a of a blur the first 3 months I always think).

I know it's hard but try and enjoy the moments of quiet and calm with you and the baby, snuggle down together, watch a film, eat whatever you want and enjoy those moments before the crying or changing starts again.

Have you been able to breastfeed? I hear it can be harder when they are early. Breastfed or bottle fed take these moments to connect and be close to your baby.

Look after yourself. Take a guilt free bath when your husband is home.

Be kind to yourself.

Bubbinsmakesthree Thu 07-Feb-19 21:16:40

I understand. I felt similar after I had a planned C section and my DS spent 15 days in NICU. I felt really cheated. I remember lying in my hospital bed on my own crying and crying while people in the next beds were cuddling their baby and getting visitors and gifts and it seemed so perfect.

I had a far from perfect natural deliver with my first but I had the rush of love and cuddles and the amazing newborn smell. DS was in an incubator and I barely saw him for days and he didn’t smell right and I really didn’t bond at all at first.

DS is nearly 2 now and I still feel a bit sad about his first weeks. But the raw feelings fade and I love him with all my heart.

It helped me to think that it was a sacrifice I made for him - that I was cheated out of the birth I wanted but that I did it to protect him.

Butteredghost Thu 07-Feb-19 21:40:49

Be kind to yourself OP. I'm not minimising your feelings, but remember natural deliveries aren't always great experiences. And it's a little sad that bub spent a night away from you, but you have the rest of your lives together.

user1493413286 Thu 07-Feb-19 21:50:11

I had my DD prematurely and in similar circumstances and I felt very upset at first about how she was delivered and what I’d missed out on that other people take for granted (immediate skin to skin, moaning about the last weeks of pregnancy, the visitors after). I felt very guilty and it took months and the reassurance of my family and doctors to accept that it wasn’t my fault and I kept my DD safe inside me for as long as possible.
I’d had a set idea about a water birth and I was quite upset about my birth although I found that the more I talked to new mums that most of them hadn’t had the births they had hoped for and theirs were also traumatic.
I found this article really helpful too; some of it won’t be relevant but it made me feel less alone in how i felt

user1493413286 Thu 07-Feb-19 21:50:48

It does get better with time

Justme10 Thu 07-Feb-19 22:44:57

Op I totally understand how you feel and it does go away, you won't continue to feel this way.
DS ended up being born by emergency c section and I was put to sleep during it so didn't meet him until nearly 5 hours after he was born, I didn't get that skin to skin with him and I remember feeling so guilty that I didn't do that cos the importance of it was stressed by midwives before he was born.
But that feeling passed after a couple of weeks and now I don't even think about it.
Please be kind to yourself thanks

WorkingItOutAsIGo Thu 07-Feb-19 22:47:37

Could you just snuggle up in bed together for some time - google fourth trimester x

CustardCreamLover Fri 08-Feb-19 03:02:16

Thank you ladies. He was away from Me in the nicu and then scbu for 3 nights. He's my first and was very much longer for. I had to have fertility treatment to conceive him. I suppose I'm struggling with the fact that my body hasn't done what it's supposed to very naturally. I'm trying very hard to enjoy him at this age but it's so hard when I'm constantly worrying about something. I've now spoken to my husband and I'm going to go for some counselling before this all gets too big. I've also asked for more help from his family. I was being very British and not wanting to put anyone out but he's their first grandson and really want to help. A midwife made a comment to me in hospital that I'm very independent and don't need any help. It's not the case at all I just don't often know how to ask. Thank you for the article. It helped a lot. Xxx

OP’s posts: |
Justme10 Fri 08-Feb-19 08:49:39

That was the big struggle for me, that my body didn't do what it is naturally supposed to do so I could give birth to my son but as I said that feeling does pass.
If you need more support definitely ask for it and I'm sure they won't mind.
I hope the counselling goes well for you and wish you all the best x

Dinosauratemydaffodils Fri 08-Feb-19 12:00:26

Ds turns 4 next week. I went into labour on my own, assumed that I had this...he was eventually delivered by c-section 81 hours after my waters broke. I got fully dilated, he just didn't budge even with forceps.

I hallucinated through the c-section, he went to NICU and I had a breakdown. I still have issues with his arrival, I can't say that I gave birth to either him or his sister (also a c-section last summer) but that doesn't bother me any more. I think for me it's because I struggle with passivity, of having something done to me rather than me actively doing.

The birth trauma association have a good closed facebook page for chatting to people who have been through the same which can help. Also take your time, lots of snuggles and definitely look at talking to someone even if it's your husband. Also be aware that he might be struggling too. I only found out when I was 8 months pregnant with dc2 how terrified dh was during my first c-section/post natal period because he refused to talk about it before hand.

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