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Late abortion for mental health reasons - any experience?(148 Posts)
This is a very sensitive and maybe ill advised post. I have a termination booked for Monday. I have battled pregnancy anxiety all through this and can't keep it going any more. I will be 18+1 so last week they can do the 1 day surgical abortion. On the one hand, as I am not in sound mind I can see there are arguments against doing this, on the other, have tried so, so hard with counselling, CBT, therapy, psych, midwife, friends, family to accept help and get my head straight and nothing worked for long at all and feels now like am at the last chance. Yes, things might improve, equally, they might not and bringing a child into the world to be raised by me in this mind set feels like the worst thing I could do, worse than termination. I have been advised that termination could leave me feeling worse but I struggle to see how it could do at present and it's a risk I increasingly feel I want to take.
What a difficult situation you are in, Sleepless, my heart goes out to you.
I have never been pregnant myself so I am not best placed to advise but couldn't read and run.
You say you are struggling with pregnancy anxiety... is this something that has just affected your pregnancy, or have you battled anxiety in the past? I'm hazarding a guess it has been a long while as you mention various treatments.
I'm also wondering if this pregnancy was planned/hoped for or a complete surprise? And if you planned to have children at all (or already do?). Just trying to get an idea of the context, and how that may be affecting things.
Considering how much you are struggling, you sound very level-headed, thoughtful and considerate, and you're doing so well to sort of step outside of yourself and recognise you are unwell and how that might be affecting your mind. All credit to you.
Do you think it would help to explore your thoughts and feelings on the matter here? Is there anything in particular you're feeling or thinking one way or the other? It doesn't matter how silly/strange you might think it sounds, now is the time to ask questions, especially of the mums here.
I hope someone better placed to advise will be along shortly
Did really want baby, was going to start IVF, but been able to move on from terror have harmed child through heavy drinking when didn't know was or even could be pregnant. Mumsnet has been amazing on other thread, as have NHS etc but fact remains for all the fantastic support am getting cannot shift my fears for a moment and just don't think am in state to become a parent. fear would just watch it the whole time to see what harm had possibly done, make it paranoid and self conscious etc. Desperate, really desperate and running out of places to go to.
You WILL NOT have harmed your baby with the drinking.
This is so bloody sad. Please listen to what people are telling you. What you have planned for Monday will almost certainly cause irrevocable harm.
I'm sorry you feel this way, but you're solving a temporary problem with a permanent solution.
If you want the baby how can you even consider this? What does your DH think?
I am not trying to sound all judgemental, honestly I'm not. But you are patently so unsure about this. As are, by the sounds of it, the people around you.
I've read your other thread and it's clear you want a cast iron guarantee that your child will be perfectly heathy. Problem is none of us can get that.. My child is disabled and will probably never lead a normal life and I did everything 'right'. You could give birth to a perfectly healthy baby and it could suffer a childhood thing that could leave it disabled for life.
There are no guarantees in life and if you can't accept that then you know your choices... people are desperately desperately trying to help you on your other thread but I'm not going to try and talk you out of it.
Be very sure though.. Because it's you and only you who will have to live with your choices either way except one will torture you with what ifs and had of dones when your hormones settle down afterwards.
Be very sure but as always having babies is a leap of faith anyway.. I'm not sure why you think you're different other than being really ill.
Hi Sleepless , I have seen your other thread and clearly you are feeling very distressed, trying to get your extreme anxiety under control in the short time you have had available is difficult but you may just transfer your anxiety to the fact that you have terminated a much wanted pregnancy. I also drank in very early pregnancy with my daughter as I too didn't know I was pregnant and like many others have told you she is fine and my worries and guilt were unfounded. With continued support and treatment for your anxiety you should start to feel better. Lots of us will be thinking of you
I second WellErrr's post..
There's nothing more I can add to it really but didn't want to read & run.
What a really difficult situation. I feel you will regret the termination if you go ahead. I can imagine anecdotes won't help but I drank heavily before I found out I was pregnant and I currently have a perfect 9 month old on my boob.
What does your partner/ husband think about this?
Sleepless I was a poster on your other thread. I work in mental health and plead with you not to have this termination. Not because I am against termination as such as I believe in a womens right to choose but from the way you talk, particularly on your other thread, I genuinely believe the guilt you may carry following a termination will be worse than the anxiety you feel now. Are you currently under the mental health team?
I recall your previous thread.
I'm sorry you still have all the anxiety.
I worried for 37 weeks that I had harmed my baby due to excess alcohol and medication ....I hadn't been trying for a baby.
I also worried that in the awful state I was in I actually tried to harm myself and the baby. I went to have a termination. I went to first appointment. I didn't go through with it. It's hard to admit but it's the truth.
I'm glad I didn't. My dc ....by some miracle in my mind. Is absolutely fine.
Your baby will be fine also.
A termination at your term will be difficult. Continuing with the pregnancy difficult also. Take all the help you are offered.
How is your DP with all this?
What an incredibly difficult situation you are in. I can't imagine the turmoil you must feel at the moment. I hope that you have some good real life support whatever decisions you make.
I'm not sure if sharing this experience will help or not but just wanted you to consider it. My friend who has severe and complex mh needs much like myself found herself pregnant with twins and very unwell. She was very unsure as to whether she could continue with the pregnancy and up until the very last point considered termination. She spent the remaining months of the pregnancy in a psych hospital and the first two months of her childrens life in a mother and baby unit. It was incredibly tough for her and her family. However, she is now well, very well in fact. Therapy and medication helped and she and her beautiful babies got through it together. Yes it's not the ideal or a textbook start to life but she fought hard to get better for them.
I can hear in your post how horribly hard this is and I am not trying to sway your decsion but people have desperately dark times and do come through the other side. I say this as if your baby was very much wanted I worry what you will feel in the weeks months and years to come.
ps. I sound really nosy! - sorry. No need to answer any of those questions, of course. x
Wellerr said it perfectly.
This is so very desperately sad. I really worry what impact having a termination will have for you OP. I too am not judging, I'm genuinely worried about how you'll feel once it's done.
Any baby, any of the time, under any circumstances might be absolutely perfect or might have difficulties. I led an exemplary lifestyle, no tea/coffee or alcohol, moderate exercise, perfect diet, folic acid etc etc etc and had multiple miscarriages. Then for no apparent reason I conceived and had a baby to term.
Any baby that you plan to have will always face risks, you can find danger in everything you do when you're pregnant, I was obsessed by the thought that a cup of tea would almost certainly damage my baby but I had to use my rational brain to batter those thoughts. It's so hard OP, I had pre and post natal anxiety and I understand how overwhelming it can be. But if you p,an to get pregnant in the future will it be any different? There is no such thing as a perfect pregnancy or a perfect mother. It is impossible and your expectations are unattainable. You need to be forgiving and kind to yourself but I know how hard that can be.
I commented on your other thread and I'm commenting again because I want you to know that you are heard here and understood and supported.
I also like Milky believe that after reading your previous thread you will have enough support to go through with this pregnancy.
I'll get shot down in flames for this I've no doubt.... but a termination at 18 weeks could be something you find even harder to deal with than the anxiety you have now....which in itself must be about as tough as it gets.
Who is giving you support in Rl I seem to recall you have family around.
I remember your last thread. I feel sick for you that you are about to make the worst mistake of your life.
What if you could tell yourself you will give it up for adoption rather than live with the guilt of termination? That way your loved and wanted baby gets to live and hopefully your mental health will improve so that you can still keep your baby if you feel well enough. Or leave the baby with your dh and let him raise it?
I just imagine you in 6 months when you are better just being destroyed by this decision.
Plus there is another thing you may not have considered.. What makes you think the worry will stop there? You could do everything right in your head and be plagued that because you terminated the first one you may be 'punished' for that with your second.. You'll just end up back here. Or if you have a less than healthy baby the next time is that a punishment? And on and on it will go.
Terminating this one may mean you'll never mentally see a pregnancy through and that's really sad.
You're 5 weeks off viability. That means that it is generally accepted that children born at this gestation are likely to surivive. Some indeed survive earlier. Hang in there. What you're proposing is hugely upsetting and distressing and absolutely won't alleviate your anxieties. It'll simply pile guilt and highly likely, crushing regret on the top, not to mention having to deal with the opinions of the other people in your life.
You're nearly there.
Sweetheart please don't have the termination , from what you have said it will make you mental health far worse and this baby is wanted.
If you later decide you can't raise the baby adoption is always an option.
Also OP, and I have to apologise for the harshness of what I'm about to type, there's a good chance you will have to deliver this baby, in a very similar way to if you decided to keep him or her, except the baby will be dead. please don't put yourself through this.
Are you getting any professional help with your feelings?
I posted on your other thread. I feel like stringing up this professor who has tipped you back over into wanting to terminate thanks to his monkey experiments.
I'm being totally upfront here - if I fell pregnant today, I'd have a termination as I suffer from ongoing mental health issues, and have had 2 PND related hospital stays.
BUT you baby is so so wanted, by both you and your DH. You were going to have IVF so I can only imagine the years of wishing and wanting for a baby. I really believe that if you terminate, you will find that if you are lucky enough to conceive again, you will find yourself right back here, with anxiety, guilt and regrets.
Have you and DH and your Mh team talked through all the options? Would you let DH be primary carer and play a background role? Could you give the baby up for adoption?
Can you imagine yourself ever holding a healthy happy baby in your hands? I think getting down to the answer here is very important.
Sleepless I haven't seen your other thread so don't really know the background.
the MH issue you have at the moment, is it AnteNatal Depression or is it something that you have been struggling with before you got pregnant?
I had a termination when I was a teenager at 20 weeks gestation. I didn't find out until I was almost 17 weeks and it didn't leave a lot of time. My boyfriend then was adamant I was to terminate and he was quite a bit older than me. So I did. And it was horrendous. I ended up self harming, suicide attempts, risky sexual behaviour with people I didn't know etc. it really ruined my mental health. I then ended up being a young parent to try and almost replace the foetus I terminated. I am entirely pro choice, if you are sure that is what you want. I didn't really want to terminate, I felt pressured to by a lot of extraneous forces. Only do it if you're sure. If it's the drinking thing, then please try and get past that. I drank and smoked heavily and barely are before I found out about my first born. We had to have an amino because my results came back high risk and I blamed myself completely for it. My amazing three year old is happy and healthy. I'm not the greatest parent, but I love them and they love me.
Is the anxiety completely new? Or have you suffered it in other forms before?
This must be feeling unbearable for you, but you will not always feel the way you do. Guaranteed. A termination is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
I first suffered mental illness after having DD2 (PND). I was convinced that I was damaging my children and that suicide was the only solution. I just couldn't see anything ahead of me--just existing was torture. But I did get better and find joy in my children. I hadn't damaged them at all.
I'm also pro-choice, but everything you've said suggests that this is your despair and hopelessness talking.
I'm sure you love your baby already. Would them not being as you see perfect mean you love them less? This baby might be your only chance and you might be throwing away a perfectly healthy baby because you won't listen to health professionals and the posters who drunk a bit before knowing they were pregnant.
What a sad situation.
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