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Anxiety and dark thoughts(8 Posts)
Hi all. I was a regular on AIBU/conception but I've name changed (out of embarrassment really).
I've just found out that I'm pregnant. I've dreamed of being pregnant for years. I've been planning the nursery in my head since we bought our house and I have a list of baby names in the notes on my phone. My DH is over the moon and I thought I would be too.
But I'm not. I've felt sick ever since I found out. Yesterday I cried on and off all day. I have pretty bad anxiety anyway and constantly live with a lump in my throat and an impending sense of doom but this has made me worse x100. I thought I was okay with risks of potentially getting pregnant in a pandemic but now it's actually happened I can't even tell you how scared I am. I can't shake this feeling that something will be wrong with my baby and itll be my fault for being anxious and stressed.
For the last year or two I've had anxiety I could normally curb it with a glass of wine or two and now that I cant I realise I might have been a bit dependent on that. Now my thoughts are getting darker and I'm starting to dwell on thoughts that I don't want to be here anymore. Yesterday my husband my husband had to help me out the shower because I had sat down under the water and started to cry and felt like I couldn't move.
I just want to have a happy, healthy pregnancy like everyone else seems to but it seems unlikely for me at the moment. I'm 26, have a good job, own home, savings etc so none of my worries are practical.
I don't think I could make a GP appointment at the moment even if I felt comfortable doing it. Does anyone have any advice or experiences to share?
Heya firstly you poor thing, it sounds really difficult what you have been going through. You are not alone tho and what you have described many women will have felt it and have come out the other side of it.
I know you say you feel like you couldn't make a GP appointment right now but I really would. As difficult as it will be, the GP is the one who can provide you with support you need. The support that will allow you to get back to yourself and enjoy the pregnancy. Is it possible to speak to your midwife or have you not got one yet? They could also help you in getting support.
In the meantime what support do you have in real life? Let them know how you are feeling. Let them help you, maybe they could make the GP appointment for you?
While waiting for an appointment try deep breathing exercises. Sounds like annoying hippie shite but it honestly helps. Follow a "breathing bubble" on YouTube or through some of the mindfulness apps. By doing the deep breathing you are increasing the happy hormones in your brain and decreasing the stress hormones. Even if its only for a few seconds, it's so good for your brain. I sometimes looked at it as giving my brain its daily dose of vitamins, I didn't always feel the positive effects immediately but I knew it was doing good.
Also when the dark thoughts are spiralling try the 5 4 3 2 1 technique.
Look for 5 things you have never noticed before
Listen for 4 different sounds
Touch 3 different things/different textures
Notice 2 different smells
Notice the 1 taste in your mouth. If you want eat/drink something and really pay attention to the taste.
This technique has saved me. Even if you go back to thinking dark thoughts immediately afterwards, it still has given your brain and you a break for a minute. Especially helpful when you are out in public has nobody will notice what you are doing.
Please know that this isn't something you need to live with, it can and will get better but you need support. Both support from loved ones and your GP and/or midwives.
All reactions to pregnancy are completely normal. There is no telling what your hormones are going to throw at you, even planned pregnancy can send you into a bit of tailspin when you get that positive result.
That said, you don't have to struggle alone, I think it would be a good idea to give your GP a call, I understand not wanting to go to the surgery right now but I think telephone consultations are still the preferred option. It's worth a call at least to see if that is an option. I know phone appointments aren't ideal either I have had to have a few during my pregnancy, the first one caught be off guard as it was two days earlier than I was expecting (they were triaging whether I needed my appointment in person and it seemed daft to schedule a second call as we were both on the phone already). The second one I knew would be a phone call so I had a notepad of questions and things to say ready and I could take notes as I was going - I got as much out of it as if I was there in person if not more. Neither of these were with a gp so I don't know if there are subtle differences with how they work.
There are therapies you can be referred to to help manage your anxiety and mental health in pregnancy and if needed there are medications that are safe to take. Your GP and midwife will be there to support you with your mental health through pregnancy, no judgement, no alarm bells get raised because you are finding things difficult. There can be waiting lists for therapies and it can take a few weeks for medication to be effective, try to seek help before things get too tricky and these waits seem even longer and more difficult!
I have mental health problems myself and prone to anxiety, we both know that anxiety feeds on these sort of situations. It loves things beyond our control to fret and worry on. Pregnancy is its dream scenario! I'm pregnant too, pregnancy during a pandemic was not what I had in mind when I pictured pregnancy and yes it has had challenges but there are simple measures that can be taken in most situations to minimise the risks to negligible. There are perks too, most of my pregnancy has been outside of prying eyes and well intentioned unsolicited advice, my partner and I have spent a lot more time alone in this bubble where only me, him and wriggle monster exist which has been lovely and we are already starting to feel like a family unit.
I havd anxiety but I've also had lots of help with it from GP. Anxiety in pregnancy is quite common and you need to get some support with it now as you dont want to risk it gettong any worse. Give the GP a phone. They will do a phone consulatation.
It will not be anything they have not heard a hundred times before and there will be support there yo help you
The hormonal onslaught will not be helping - please do see your GP. I'm 36 weeks now, and no woman I've spoken to yet has had a happy glowy pregnancy - feeling rubbish and can't wait for it to be over are the most common themes. You are not alone xx
Thank you for your kind comments. I will phone my GP although I'm not sure if it's a little early (I'm not even 5 weeks)?
@dropthemic thanks for posting those techniques I will definitely be giving them a try
As well as speaking to your gp, please also flag this to your midwife. She may be able to refer you to a perinatal mental health team who can help. I'm 18 weeks and have always suffered from anxiety. I've not been too bad in pregnancy but I am of the mind that I will always reach out for as much support as i can get if needed. Change can be a massive trigger for making anxiety worse, so I think it's only natural you feel the way you do right now - and it's nothing to be ashamed off. The feelings you describe are so familiar to me so I really feel for you and what you are going through - take care xx
Hey @alwaysunderwater early pregnancy hormones can be an emotional rollercoaster especially if you already have a spot of anxiety.
I think a gp / midwife chat will be great to ease your worries. Midwives on the whole are great at understanding how women feel and can be super supportive and reassuring.
Insight timer is very good, it’s an app. There’s a meditation by Sarah Blondin about fear and anxiety, it’s wonderful.
Be kind to yourself, early pregnancy is testing on us all with all these hormones raging ♥️
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