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Please help me burnout - possibly ante natal depression(2 Posts)
I think I might have antenatal depression I'm currently 17 weeks pg with DC2 (planned and wanted) and it's been a terrible pg so far - very difficult 12 weeks and at the same time we moved house (along with all the normal 5-6 weeks of 'are we exchanging are we not') and then just as we moved 2 people left fro DH's business (of 3 people) so just leaving him, so I had to manage the whole house move alone whilst dealing with constant sickness, a 2.5 year old and DH being really stressed and working 16 hour days. I also work full time, and started a new job earlier in the year and don't feel as though I've fully settled in that, which has also caused me some anxiety. Anyway, the pg sickness went at 12 weeks, and I've just been ploughing on since then, but at my MW appointment on Monday I broke down and couldn't stop crying. She was great, and got me an immediate appointment with a lovely GP who has signed me off for 2 weeks, but now I've stopped I actually feel worse. I think it's because I now have space in my day to feel the anxiety - which is like a constant knotted stomach. Even the tiniest things (like not being able to find my driving licence to change the address) are causing me to feel like I'm about to do the scariest thing in my life. I keep waking up in the night and without realising it I'm suddenly crying - it's like my eyes are bleeding tears, they don't even roll down - there's just water flowing out uncontrollably. I don't feel quite this bad all the time, since I've been signed off I've had some hours of respite where I've felt calm and up to cooking a meal or reading or something, but I'm in a much worse mental state than I was.
On top of all of this, I'm worried about my relationship with DH. We have huge sexual issues which go right back to the start of our relationship. They're all my fault as I have a very low sex drive combined with recurrent thrush and I dealt with it badly for years. We did the relate sex therapy which worked really well, but then without really thinking it through, before we could consolidate the changes we got pg with DC1 and since then have struggled with all the normal things - I had a 2c degree tear with DC1 which made sex very painful for ages, then the mad toddler stage with both of us working long hours. Anyway, a few weeks ago we had a huge fight about it (just after sex) as I'd felt like I wasn't enjoying the sex we were just about managing to have and I raised it, and DH was really upset that I'd been 'just going along with it' which was true for a few recent times, but in no way true for any of the sex we've had since the Relate therapy. I've made myself feel even worse by reading 'sexless' threads on Relationships here which seem to be full of people saying they'd leave a sexless marriage and also talking about the hurt and pain it causes them. I'm so devastated I've done the same thing to my DH. I love him dearly, and want to be with him, and develop a tender, loving sex life, but the anxiety about it all is now so crippling it feels like a horrendous catch 22.
Sorry this is so long, but I had to get it out somewhere. I don't know if I'm going to be ready to go back to work after 2 weeks, but don't want to spend the whole of my pg at home. Has anyone got any advice/experience of any of this? I feel so alone.
I'm so sorry you're having such a challenging time right now. Although I haven't had the same experience as yours I do know what it's like to struggle with kids/full time work/owning your own business/relationship issues and anxiety so I know where you're coming from.
These feelings you are describing are all symptoms of stress and I'm guessing that right now your head is just rushing from catastrophic thought to catastrophic thought. I have found that mindfulness techniques are very useful on a long term basis and I have also had a really beneficial effect from listening to hypnosis on YouTube. I was so impressed by the effect they had on my emotional outlook that I went to see a hypnotherapist in RL and had several very useful sessions with her.
I still listen to sleep hypnosis on YouTube most nights, jody whitely is really good, she does videos which are targeted to depression and anxiety, but there are lots of other videos available, just search around to find something that works for you.
I also read self help books avidly now. one that might be good to start with is eckhart tolle, 'the power of now' his basic premise is to be always 'in the moment' as that is the only time that truly exists and it is the only time which you have any control over. Ironically though, if the average person examines their thoughts the vast majority of them are ruminating over the past and fretting over the future- both fruitless activities. I find that if I can just 'be' here and now and enjoy the tiniest little pleasures and joys of life, so many of the things I was fretting over just disappear. I found it didn't happen overnight, but with focus, it did happen and I am so much happier now.
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