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Can't bear this anymore, is termination at 15 16 weeks just going to make it all worse?

(467 Posts)
Sleeplessinnorthlondon Mon 25-May-15 12:23:21

I'm going to delete my profile soon as so ashamed of all of what's happened but desperate for any advice anyone can offer. In summary, conceived when thought couldn't, just about to start ivf, and didn't know. Had two different due dates from different scans but looks like could have drunk heavily 16, 17 and 18 dpo. Stopped as soon as found out but can't shake the guilt despite doctors all telling me it would probably be fine. Would never have terminated for downs or any condition the child was going to have anyway, but cannot bear idea of having spoilt life chances of child that would have been healthy through stupidity. Tried counselling, midwife, friends, all been so kind but can't shake terror and guilt and suspect will never shift and will be terrible mother when born as so anxious and guilty. Just can't bear any of this any more, none of the help I've tried to access is working and Marie stopes have said they can organise an abortion this week. Will mean hurting friends, family and above all darling darling husband but he has said will support me if it's the only way forward. So so desolate and terrified, everyone around me saying this is mental health issue not physical and probably right but in no state to bring child into the world like this anyway. Has anyone been in the same boat? Did the termination help or make it worse? Please help me.

seaoflove Mon 25-May-15 12:25:41

I promise you the baby will not have been harmed. It probably will not have implanted at such an early stage.

You do sound very unwell. Please talk to your GP.

blacktreaclecat Mon 25-May-15 12:28:12

At that early stage it's very very unlikely a drunken few days would do harm- would only just be implanting and not getting much from you yet. The number of babies born healthy when their mums had some drinks unaware they were pregnant must be significant.
Please don't beat yourself up, and no I wouldn't terminate. I had a termination for medical reasons and it was a horrible time.
Please look after yourself xx

itsanewday Mon 25-May-15 12:31:03

Oh my goodness you poor thing! I'm so sorry that I can't offer you constructive advice, although I'm sure someone will be along very soon who can. But I send you such huge hugs, and I do wonder if the guilt you feel if you terminate might stay with you for the rest of your life, whereas if you keep the baby, I feel sure that all will be well the moment your child is born. Take heed of the advice you are being given by the professionals. You couldn't have known this would happen so there was no badness in your actions, and what a wonderful wonderful miracle that you have conceived naturally.

Springintosummer Mon 25-May-15 12:31:20

OP there have been lots of similar threads to this recently. You are not the only one to worry this way. Alcohol fetal syndrome affects the children of mothers who drink heavily throughout the whole pregnancy not the children of mums who are drunk before they realise they are pregnant. I don't know anybody with children who did not drink at this stage all because they had not yet realised they were pregnant. None of their children have any problems.

I think this is a normal worry but the level it is affecting you is extreme please see your GP ASAP and contact your midwife they will be able support you. Please don't have a termination this week. If you decide it is for the best you can have one the week after when you have sought medically advise and support for this.

Sleeplessinnorthlondon Mon 25-May-15 12:31:56

I'm afraid the implantation thing isn't true, it implants around 10 days and it's only the first 14 dpo that are all or nothing, that week after at some point, and there's a debate about when that real harm can be done, from what I can gather most significantly in neurodevelopmental ways so memory, iq, attention etc. I couldn't care less if our child was academic, I can't bear the thought that they will find life hard in ways they wouldn't have if they had had a better mother

Groovee Mon 25-May-15 12:32:57

Around the time I conceived dd, I was on heavy duty painkillers. Pregnancy was unplanned and I was terrified that I had done damage. GP tried to reassure me. It didn't work, but dd was born early due to pre eclampsia but is now 15, healthy intelligent and not hindered in any way. Despite my fears.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing but in pregnancy, hormones make you irrational, so please don't do anything in haste x

Xoticdreamz Mon 25-May-15 12:33:06

You are one of millions that have drank alcohol in early pregnacy .
The worries you have are most definitely bring blown out of proportion .
Try to listen to the professionals giving advice and try to enjoy thus obviously much wanted pregnancy.

Ficidy Mon 25-May-15 12:33:16

Oh wow, you're in a bad way. I'm sure the doctors would have all explained why your drinking wouldn't have affected your baby (the placenta isn't yet formed etc). It would have had absolutely no impact whatsoever. Please please please just try to focus on the good news that you have and forget about the termination. I'm not against abortions at all, but I think in this case you will regret it. I'm an IVF mother, so I understand the struggle. Get better counselling and quickly.

Devora Mon 25-May-15 12:35:30

Sleepless, you sound in a very desperate place - I'm so sorry you are going through this. Can I just ask what kind of place you were in before you conceived? Because if this is solely about your anxiety over the alcohol, then I really really think you should not be taking up that Marie Stopes appointment. You should, though, be asking your midwife to refer you for specialist mental health support (you know that antenatal depression and anxiety is a common problem, yes?).

Alternatively, if your mental wellbeing was a bit shaky before pregnancy then you might need to seriously consider if now is the right time for you to have a child. But again, I think you should ask for an emergency referral through the NHS to help you make this choice. Marie Stopes is a sound organisation, but this sounds as if it needs a different level of expertise.

I really understand why you are worried - my child's birth mother drank excessively throughout pregnancy - but, as others are telling you, three nights drinking is unlikely to have harmed your child.

As you were planning IVF, I am guessing you have gone through a very stressful time and this decision is especially loaded for you. I expect there will be people in RL (and maybe here) who consider it unthinkable that you would terminate a pregnancy in this situation. I've worked in abortion services and have come across many cases of women who terminated IVF pregnancies - there can be many, many valid reasons for doing this. So don't let yourself be guilt-tripped out of doing the right thing for you. But you sound very panicked, so please don't make any final decisions until you have had all the information and support you can get.

Very best of luck.

eurochick Mon 25-May-15 12:36:00

Please get some mental health support. Many many people drink in very early pregnancy. Their children are fine.

notquitegrownup2 Mon 25-May-15 12:36:28

No experience exactly, but I too had terrible anxieties when pregnant and well remember the terror of having harmed my baby. Pregnancy drives your hormones wild, you know, and anxieties multiply in size. I too drank far more than I normally would have done early on in my pregnancy, accidentally, before I found out. I also had a terrible panic towards the end, when MIL gave me something to eat which she definitely shouldn't have. I was terrified.

However, ds1 is now a strapping lad of 15 and a complete superstar.

The terrors did not go away immediately I had him - I found the early years of having a child extremely difficult, but my GP was very helpful and helped me to deal with the anxiety (I didn't seek help during pregnancy - didn't know that I could at that time.) My dh was very supportive too.

Please talk to your GP now and take your dh with you. Talk about your terror and how other people's reassurances are not making you feel any better. Ask your GP if they can help you now to deal with this, and in the light of that advice discuss with your dh what you want to do together. That way you will have more support and a genuine choice to make over your future.

Hope that helps.

OTheHugeManatee Mon 25-May-15 12:37:19

At that very early stage foetal cells are undifferentiated so if you accidentally harmed a few of them by drinking other cells will quickly have replaced them to do the same job. Don't worry and absolutely don't abort if you would otherwise want the baby.

I agree with others though that you sound extremely anxious and should absolutely see a doctor, not about your pregnancy but about getting some mental health support.

Sleeplessinnorthlondon Mon 25-May-15 12:37:53

Thanks everyone, sorry, was posting last message before saw others come up. I am going to try midwife once more and gp but if i can't ease this am going to have to proceed. I understand many women at this stage are ok but some will not be and it's the fact no one really knows what the risk is I cannot bear. Think lots of the threads started about this are mine! Had the same name, not others, not seen other recent posts.

BrockAuLit Mon 25-May-15 12:38:08

Oh OP. I feel so sorry for the state you are in.

You clearly desperately want a child given the readiness to embark upon IVF: I think you sound like you would make a wonderful, loving, caring, giving mother to your baby. The guilt you feel is all these emotions in extremis.

I never come down hard on any side of a terminate/keep dilemma, but your case is different. Please don't do it - your anxiety is making you do something unnecessary (truly, at that many dpo, the 'baby' will not have been affected) that will damage you further and set you further back on the path to having a baby. Please, please put your energies towards resolving your false guilt instead; imagine the beautiful baby who will make you so so happy and proud.

And don't be ashamed: the only thing you are guilty of is caring too much. Allow yourself to love and enjoy; you and the baby are worth it.

Good luck, dear. My heart goes out to you.

batfish Mon 25-May-15 12:39:10

sleepless I think you should seek some counselling urgently - if you were wanting to have a baby before and now you are considering an abortion because you are so worried that you will be a bad mother then you should definitely get some help. I am sure you have nothing to worry about in terms of the alcohol but it sounds like this is about much more than that. Your husband sounds great to be so supportive and I am sure that you are a very good and caring person and would make a wonderful mum with the right support. Please seek some professional help before making such a decision - I am pro choice so absolutely not saying don't have an abortion if you think that is the right option - but I am not sure from what you have said that you are in the right frame of mind to be making that kind of decision at the moment. Wishing you all the luck in the world and please don't be ashamed or delete your profile, if it helps even a tiny bit then keep talking on here - but make sure you see your doctor as well about your wider concerns, maybe they don't realise that your anxieties are about far more than just that you drank in early pregnancy.

Sleeplessinnorthlondon Mon 25-May-15 12:43:36

You're all so kind but there is so much evidence it can have been affected, could share all the links but can't bear to look online anymore. The doctors have all said unlikely, not impossible. My mental health was ok before, mainly, definitely had some anxieties before when husband was in Afghanistan etc. bank holiday so all services closed but will try again tomorrow, starting with gp. Just know each passing day the process of termination will be more horrid and painful and harder to deny to self is child at this stage. Also longer goes on more pain for family, husband etc. so sorry about all of this, know is miserable and grim, feel like lost control of my life.

Drivingnovice Mon 25-May-15 12:43:47

OP you sound very unwell. I don't think that MS has really helped you by offering a termination this week. I'm a bit baffled that you would consider ending a life just because there is a chance that because you had a drink early on you may have damaged its life chances...?

Many many many women have been drunk in the early stages, before they knew and their children are fine.

I would urge you not to do anything hasty. I think it is wonderful that you have conceived naturally. You should be really proud and pleased.

Please go and see your GP

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Mon 25-May-15 12:47:02

Oh OP you sound in such a state sad. I know stories of other people who have done this and everything is fine aren't going to help, but just to let you know that I went on a hen weekend at 16DPO, no idea I was pregnant (PCOS, had been trying for well over a year, thought it wasn't going to happen) and spent 3 days playing drinking games with sambuca blush. DD is now 18 months old, bright, happy, walking and talking etc etc with not a single sign of a problem.

Devora Mon 25-May-15 12:48:36

Look, I don't know how useful this is, but my child's birth mother drank heavily (I mean at alcoholic levels) throughout pregnancy. As well as heavy use of drugs. And my daughter, at 5, is doing brilliantly physiologically, academically and socially.

There is no guarantee of anything (hence our rather ridiculous national guidelines of no alcohol in pregnancy) but I would be stonkingly amazed if your child sustained damage from three days heavy drinking. Nobody can say it's impossible. We can't do proper comparative research in this area (and remember that most women will under-report their drinking levels). But there are no guarantees of anything with pregnancy, anyway.

I completely understand and sympathise with your anxieties. Your job right now is to work out how to get the help and support you need for a happy and healthy pregnancy. Your child needs for you to optimise your emotional wellbeing as much as possible. Please do get help - don't suffer in silence.

BrockAuLit Mon 25-May-15 12:49:39

Also, procreation is an absolutely unclear science; we just don't know enough about it to be able to say with certainty - which is what you will need to terminate - that implantation occurred on Tuesday rather than Wednesday, or that your liver processed x units in y hours and the blood passing through your system carried z mg/unit of alcohol. It's all so particular to your body and the exact circumstances you were in. There is simply no way you can know, and rather than imprisoning you this uncertainty should be freeing you: who knows, but the overwhelming majority of human experience says everything will be fine.

You will NEVER have certainty around this. This can cripple you: will you terminate and then spend years and years feeling guilty about possibly having terminated a perfectly healthy baby? You are locking yourself into a lifetime of anxiety and guilt. You are in the very early weeks of a life change that is riddled with uncertainties - in fact, there are very few certainties when it comes to being a parent.

You would do better putting your energies towards learning to live with an uncertain world, than trying to control your environment. Doing this will be invaluable when you do finally become a mother.

Drivingnovice Mon 25-May-15 12:49:44

Please stop googling. Everything you read on the Internet isn't true, the same as everything you read in the papers isn't true....

you are fuelling your anxiety. You need to see your GP and take your DH with you.

Sleeplessinnorthlondon Mon 25-May-15 12:50:36

In fairness to ms they are a neutral service just meeting women's needs as the women themselves understand them, offered counselling, did v thorough phone interview etc. this is my mess, think they're just trying to help.

BrockAuLit Mon 25-May-15 12:54:08

If you go to a service offering terminations, they will behave responsibly but basically their job is to offer terminations.

If you go to a service offering help in getting your head to where it needs to be, their job will basically be to make you feel better about what has happened.

You are looking to the wrong people for help, as though you've already decided. Give the other side a chance. Get help.

Devora Mon 25-May-15 12:54:45

1. Stop looking online. Please, just stop. It's not going to help.

2. Understand that the doctors cannot tell you it's impossible. But they're telling you it's as near as dammit impossible.

3. Insist that your midwife refers you for specialist help. In the meantime, you could try a voluntary helpline like this www.pandasfoundation.org.uk/help-and-information.html

4. Your husband sounds like he's trying to be very supportive. Ask him to help you get the support you need, perhaps by going with you to see the midwife and helping you being assertive in asking for extra help.

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