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Finally admitted to DH there's a problem(4 Posts)
I think I may have some form of PTSD due to 2 traumatic births. The 2nd affected me more and since then I've turned into someone I no longer recognise. It all came out tonight after a conversation with my DH. I felt like I had to tell him.
I cried, I felt panicked, I was terrified that someone else now knew and was so scared he would think I was crazy. He's been fantastic and I now feel ready to explore the issues.
11 years ago I had DC1 and after a very long labour, an epidural and being forced to push DC's HR began to drop. I was very upset and was told by a MW if I "don't stop screaming your baby will flatline".
They got a consultant to see me because of the dropping HR and suddenly all hell broke loose. He started shouting at the MW's (he apologised for his behaviour after) and I had consent forms shoved in my face and raced down to theatre. DC1 was transverse and cord around his neck.
He was delivered by forceps after being manually and internally turned. I had a 3rd degree tear and haemorrhaged badly after. I needed cauterising and lots of stitches. I pointed out my HB levels to the MW after 2 days on the antenatal ward and feeling shocking. I needed blood and they'd missed it. (Was nurse training when fell pg). My notes were altered and complete lies. I felt I couldn't say anything and was just happy to be home with DC1 after 7 days in hospital. During that time was my cousin's funeral. I was told to stop crying as it would affect my milk and DC.
My 6 week check up was at the hospital with plastic surgeon. I developed mastitis and couldn't bf DC1. MW made me look at stitches in a mirror at home. I was horrified and still have a scar.
This was with exDH. We divorced a year later.
Fast forward 7 years. After 3 years with current DH I had DC2. High risk pregnancy due to last time. Was induced a week early and progressed quickly. Once on labour ward DC2 was delivered 2 and a half hours later with just gas and air. I was elated. No grazes or tears.
DC2 was whisked away to NICU as he had a rash all over him and wasn't breathing properly.
An hour later I started bleeding. Clots were coming out. Was told it's all normal. 2 hours after that I'm put on post natal ward in side room as I didn't have DC2 with me. I still hadn't seen him. I got up to go to the toilet and the floor flooded with blood. Sister came in to calls of help from DH. Again, all hell broke loose.
A doctor tried examining me without pain relief twice. I'm sorry to be so blunt but she was up to her forearm inside me and was trying to get the placenta away from me which had been left inside after such a fast birth. She couldn't do it.
I nearly passed out and was screaming. The room was full of people now. Once again I was rushed out to prep me for theatre. They told DH to say goodbye and give me a kiss and to go and sit with DC2. I honestly thought I was going to die.
I had the procedure and spent the night in HDU. They brought me a photo of DC2 in his little clear box thing with tubes and wires. I couldn't look at it.
When I finally saw him the following afternoon after being wheeled to NICU he had the feeding tube out but he wouldn't latch on and it upset me so much. He would only stop crying if DH held him. I had to ff as he wouldn't bf.
The next day he was back with me. We finally left for home the following morning after begging the doctor to let me home without blood, he ok'd it on the proviso I was not to leave the house for a week and had someone with me at all times. MW's came every day that week to check I didn't need to go back for a transfusion.
DC2 took a while to settle with me instead of just DH. I felt useless.
Since then I've gained 5 stone, I can't stop eating. I'm unhappy and sad. I suffer anxiety and hyper vigilance . My libido is shot to pieces and I often feel I don't deserve my DH or DC. I get panicky at the thought of another baby. It terrifies me. I will not have another. I try and avoid pregnant friends/family or talking about it.
I hate going to a hospital and going near the labour/antenatal wards. My palms sweat and I feel panicked.
I have become quite controlling and need to know where loved ones are and what times things will happen. I have insomnia.
DC1 has SEN so I deal with the stress of being his carer on top of all of this.
Am I going mad or are my 2 awful births affecting me more than I realised?
I'm so sorry this is so long. If you've got this far then thank you, my heart is beating so fast. That was hard to write. I'm sorry it sounds so disjointed,
I'm sorry I can't be more help. I would definitely say the trauma of your births affected you. How could they not. I have had anxiety, not sleeping, panic attacks etc and a few years ago the doctor attributed it to my brothers death 18 years previously as some sort of PTSD. I think you need to seek help on many levels. Your husband, family, GP and councillor. Stay strong
It does sound likely that the trauma is still affecting you. Well done for sharing with DH and starting to get some support. Your GP is your first post of call as they can refer you on to appropriate services. If you go down the councelling or psychology route make sure that they are familiar with treating trauma, as traditional talking therapies can make things worse by retraumatising you going over and over the events. That was what happened with me. I eventually saw someone privately for EMI (eye movement integration) which resolved my PTSD in 1 session, I would highly recommend this to anyone dealing with trauma. There is also a similar therapy caled EMDR which seems to be more mainstream.
Thank you to both of you for replying. Sometimes it feels like an excuse for how I am. I feel like if I'd starting using alcohol as comfort instead of food then it would have been picked up sooner.
I've accessed the Birth Trauma website and it's been very helpful so far, including links to specialist counsellors.
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