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Anxiety peaking have I caused SBS

(8 Posts)
Pinkgirl1986 Wed 17-Jul-19 18:03:18


I have got post natal anxiety for which I have just started medication for. My baby is almost 7 months and is the light of my life. My anxiety stemmed from nearly dying whilst pregnant and has made me worry about my baby's health ever since.

I'm a single mum.

I sometimes rock my baby in my arms supporting her head and her bottom, like a rocking ship. She chuckles and we laugh together. I do these motions and get higher each time. I stopped yesterday and had a thought, what if I am causing shaken baby syndrome. I stayed up all night with worry, crying. My baby woke up in the night and has been sick a few times today. Now I am beating myself up that I have been causing damage playing this way? I rock her to sleep every night but in a more gentle motion. I then began to wonder, what if when I'm tired I rock her t sleep but don't realise I'm rocking her really hard?

She has just learnt how to roll over. So when I'm changing her bottom I have to turn her back on to her back. She really fights against me to go back on to her belly. I have now bought pull up nappies so I can change her whilst she is on her front to make it easier because I worried then that every time I was putting her back on to her back she would be injuring her arm or her head. The same goes for when she rolls over in her cot on an evening. I place her to sleep on her back but she wakes up insisting to go on to her belly, so I stand over her cot and roll her back on to her back until she falls asleep that way because I'm scared she will suffocate on her belly or overheat. When she lays on her belly she doesn't lay with her head to the side she just face plants!!! I'm in such a worry and panic I can't relax. I love her to bits but I feel so guilty that I can't enjoy being a mum out of worry. I question everything. I think it's a mixture of what happened when I was pregnant and being a lone parent, not having anyone there to make decisions with.

So basically now I'm scared my baby has SBS through play, a broken arm through rolling her on to her back on her change mat or in the cot. She just resists and cries and wants to go on her belly and I'm scared I'm a bad mum. Is this normal what she does?

I just don't feel capable. I feel guilty. I feel like I'm so blessed with this gorgeous baby that I can't possibly be this lucky and fear something bad will happen. This anxiety is killing me. Literally. I am contemplating suicide. I feel she will be better off without me. I feel guilty she has me as a mum. I feel like I will ruin her life. Or I feel like she isn't safe with me. Not because I would intentionally harm her but because I'm not capable. I feel like a failure to her. She deserves better. I'm nearly in tears. I am so so worried she is going to die because I am a crap mum. Please help me. I don't want to give up. I picture her in the future and just can't wait to have an amazing life with her. She is my number one priority. She is my life. I would give up my whole world for her. Please help me. Is she hurt? Am I doing a bad job? Then I feel guilty because I get angry that I can't protect her... sometimes I just want my life to go back to the way it was. Not because I don't want her... quite the opposite. It's because I love her TOO MUCH and she's too precious.

I even worry she'll grow up and then get cancer or something and be on a children's ward. The feelings of worry I had when I nearly died when pregnant and worrying about her health after I was so ill has not left me and is getting worse and worse and now it's snatching away my sanity and my ability to be a good mother. I have clear imaginations and thoughts of my screaming in a hospital at losing her. My pregnancy was so hard. I was abandoned.

As I'm writing this she's falling asleep on me as I'm definitely worried the rocking play has caused SBS or rolling her over on her change mat! 😭😭😭

I'm a complete loon. I'm on the verge of giving up. She's too perfect and it breaks my heart.

OP’s posts: |
BelleSausage Wed 17-Jul-19 18:07:33

This is the post natal depression talking lots of parents rock their children to sleep.

Sleep deprivation and depression make you have wild thoughts. I used to imagine a million ways that DD could die every day. She is three now and those thoughts have lessened.

You are doing a good job.

What kind of support do you have in real life?

Mammatron Wed 17-Jul-19 18:23:02

Did you post about this a few week ago? It seems familiar. If not, the OP on that thread got good advice so might be worth you looking for it

MrsBertBibby Wed 17-Jul-19 18:28:00

Of course you haven't caused SBS, that requires tremendous force. This is your anxiety. Talk to the HV or your GP. She's a happy, well loved baby.

Pinkgirl1986 Wed 17-Jul-19 18:27:59

No I have never posted before.
I also have a supportive family.

OP’s posts: |
TheSheepofWallSt Wed 17-Jul-19 18:30:44

Ah OP.
I had PNA too. Psychotherapy has been hugely helpful (mine stemmed from childhood trauma that having a baby massively unleashed)- but that might not be right for you.

What I can say to you is this-
You haven’t hurt your baby.

You are doing an amazing job.

The intrusive thoughts are not “yours” - they belong to the anxiety.
If you can, try and imagine these awful thoughts as “flotsam and jetsam” in your mind- just passing through. It might help to think of your mind as like satellite tv- loads of channels, that you flick through constantly. Occasionally you’ll flick past an advert or programme that makes you sad, or afraid, or horrified- the trick is to keep “changing channel” and not to pay the “bad content” any more or less attention than anything else you flick past and aren’t interested in. Does that make sense? The content of the thoughts is completely irrelevant, and says nothing about you. The thoughts are just a symptom of anxiety.

And finally- there’s a book on Amazon- “dropping the baby and other intrusive thoughts” (or something)- you might find it helpful.

flowers been there my love. I promise it gets better. You’re a wonderful wonderful mother.

Pinkgirl1986 Wed 17-Jul-19 18:31:14

I know but I've read that even simple movements or even when the baby's head is supported it can cause SBS. So if she is being rocked up and down, high to low, even with her head supported can that not cause it?

OP’s posts: |
TheSheepofWallSt Wed 17-Jul-19 18:32:34

When you see actual forensic reconstructions of how SBS happens, I promise you. It’s horribly violent and vigorous. Not at all what you’ve been doing. This is your anxiety talking.
Your baby is fine.

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