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Termination due to prenatal depression

(13 Posts)
findinghope Thu 15-Nov-18 15:16:55

I never thought I would be writing this, but here I am. I have two beautiful children and had been trying for a third. We got pregnant, and I developed extreme anxiety, depression, rapid heartbeat, wanting to miscarry the baby. I have no idea where this was all coming from or why I felt like that. I never felt like that when I was pregnant with my other two. I have no history of mental illness.

I don't even know how terminating the pregnancy got in my mind, but it did. I contemplated ending the pregnancy for a few weeks, and sadly, with support from my mom and husband, ended the pregnancy. I regretted it immediately. I was out of my mind. I can't even understand how I got to that point at this time. It's been just over a week since it happened.

I'm devastated that I did this and so heartbroken. I didn't know anything about prenatal depression until after I had the termination. I wish my doctors had noticed it. In my right mind, I never would've have done that.

I guess I'm just looking for support on how to get through this. We are happy family and I don't want that to change. I love my children with all of my heart and don't want this to affect them in any way.

It feels like it was an out of body experience,. I'm so confused as to how any of this happened.

Ilovesuperman Sat 17-Nov-18 08:29:43

Similar story here but had PTSD and hypertension so more for my health in the long term. You made a difficult choice that was right for your health at the time. I also wish there was something Dr could do for pre natal depression. It made me question why we were having another sibling for our ds? Because people have two or more? Not because I wanted to do it all again which I think makes the sandess and depression worse if that makes sense.
Please know you have support here and are a good person and it will happen for you again if you choose. Maybe speak to a gp first so they can get some medication in first? I have gone on birth control as deep down I know it wasn't what I want. I am happy with my little but perfect family x

findinghope Sat 17-Nov-18 17:02:33

Thank you so much, ilovesuperman. It's nice to hear from someone who has gone through it. How are you working through the sadness of it all? Have you seen a therapist? I'm determined to get better I feel like I'm living someone else's life and can't believe this all happened.

Ilovesuperman Sat 17-Nov-18 17:43:18

Erm faking smiles at work and trying to talk to DH who doesn't want to know anymore. He's sad I think, he wanted another and I had a termination. He has supported me but only because he loves me. I am quite cross at my Dr actually as they wouldn't prescribe me anything. I have PTSD from a traumatic birth previously and suffered pnd after so although this one was planned (I know I'm an awful person) when I heard about my bp all my memories came back of the csec and everything I went through. I've had three sessions about PTSD so I understand my amygdala was trying to keep me alive and firing on impulses but I also know how I felt with ds and I would have been devestated to bleed with him and lose him. Different times different pregnancy I guess. I found it hard I wasn't too sicky but found each day I didn't want to wake up or help my son or do anything really. Pregnancy does not suit me and today clearing out the loft has been hard going. I haven't cried but did feel a pang of guilt but I am a mother, I am here and I have put me and my family first for health wether that's mental or physical.
Sorry for the long post not sure I even answered what you asked now sorry!
Did you have medical or surgical? I had medical and just stopping bleeding nearly now horah!

JudasPrudy Sat 17-Nov-18 17:45:33

So sorry you've had to go through this. I would try to take some comfort from the fact that you've shielded your two children from 9 months and probably beyond of having a very unhappy Mum thanks

Ilovesuperman Mon 19-Nov-18 11:16:19

How are you finding hope ?

FluffyPersian Mon 19-Nov-18 12:28:23

I didn't know much about pre-natal depression - so much awareness about PND, but very little about depression during pregnancy. I'd never had any mental health issues, but as soon as I became pregnant (planned), my mood plummeted to the point I was on anti-depressants but they just let me actually 'plan' my suicide as opposed to doing it on the spur of the moment because I felt so utterly low and wretched.

I understand what you mean about being 'out of your mind' as I felt like that too, despite having a very strong support network and it being my first pregnancy - I didn't feel excited, happy or any positive feelings at all and I terminated my pregnancy at 12 weeks.

Afterwards, there were a lot of emotions - firstly, I felt very empty.... then I felt like a massive weight had been lifted off my shoulders - I was lucky enough to have the support of 2 other women from Mumsnet who had also gone through terminations (and have gone on to be very good friends IRL) which helped me enormously as there was no judgement from them, only understanding.

Despite that - I had and 3 years later, still feel guilt - Not from anyone else in the world, but from me - When close friends and family get pregnant, I beat myself up and ask myself why is it that they can 'achieve' getting to the end of pregnancy and I just couldn't cope? There's loads of other emotions, but I would be lying if I didn't say there was still guilt.

How I found I 'got through it', is by professional counselling and by surrounding myself with people who would listen and not judge me - On a bad day, I still get upset, think irrationally and can still cry, but on a good day (and there are many) I do believe that I had continued the pregnancy - I wouldn't be alive today.

This isn't something you did - it was a reaction to your hormones / situation / other external factors... You made the most rational choice which has enabled your partner and your 2 children to have a Wife and a Mother.... just like my choice enabled my (now) Husband, to have his partner for a long time to come.

Antenatal depression still seems so lost in all the pregnancy stuff - there's a small paragraph on NCT... there's a small footnote in some of the pregnancy books I read (and tried desperately to 'force' myself to be happy and not depressed), but it's still swept under the carpet - I wish more women would be honest about how they feel during pregnancy as I think there's still this image that all women are 'super happy and excited' and there's no emotional or physical pain felt until labour.

Be kind to yourself - you've done nothing wrong.

Ilovesuperman Tue 20-Nov-18 10:50:37

Wow what a post feels like I could have written it myself! Thank you for the honesty

Ilovesuperman Tue 20-Nov-18 19:22:20

How are you finding hope?

findinghope Fri 23-Nov-18 23:32:56

Wow, FluffyPersian, I can’t thank you enough for your post. It is somewhat comforting to know that others have gone through this.

I’m having a rough time. I just keep repeating in my head, “I can’t believe I did that.” I’m trying to hold it together for my kids and husband, who has been extremely supportive. It just feels like such a huge weight right now, and I have no way of fixing it. I think that’s the hardest part, it’s something I have to learn to live with, and I don’t like that.

Have you thought about getting pregnant again? I sometimes feel that may be the only way to lift the heaviness in my heart; but also think that may be irrational thinking.

Again, thank you so much for your post. I can’t begin to tell you how much I appreciate it.

FluffyPersian Sat 24-Nov-18 12:04:39

I remember feeling exactly how you feel now and just continually going through things in my head - I couldn't get over the feeling of feeling 'empty', yet it seemed odd as I made a choice to terminate - so why was I feeling empty? One of my friends on Mumsnet who had also gone through an abortion said 'time will help' and I remember thinking 'I'm not sure it will'.... You might feel the same, that no matter how much time passes, it won't help - I think it will, however I don't think you'd ever forget - I've not forgotten, but it does get easier from a day to day perspetctive.

As for thinking of trying to get pregnant again - No, I couldn't go through the depression again. I got to the point of writing my goodbye letters and planning how I was going to take my own life and I believe if I was to try pregnancy again - the same thing would happen, even if I was heavily medicated.

Different people react to pregnancy in different ways - part of my own battle is hormones, but another part is sheer overwhelming panic when I think I'm not in 'control' and having witnessed my sister give birth 5 years ago and see what happened with her - the fact she was ignored and not given pain relief / the fact she suffered a double prolapse, / the fact she had severe PND and the birth debrief only worsened her feelings as she was told it was a 'text book birth' and they wouldn't guarantee her a C-section if she was to try again....... 5 years later she still has PTSD and can't talk about the birth without crying and says she would never have another child - i saw all of this, so I am terrified beyond belief of having no control and medical professionals 'doing things to me against my will'.

I also have PMDD which means I'm currently on AD's for 8-10 days a month, but the rest of the time, I'm absolutely 'normal' ... as it ramps up to my period, my mood crashes extremely badly - if you get pregnant, the hormones ramp up even more.

I've decided that until something changes (change in thinking / change in mood / change in something else), I don't think trying to go through pregnancy is worth it - I'm very grateful to have the life I have with incredibly supportive family and friends and I think that's enough smile

One thing to remember when you feel very low is that.... You made that decision because it was the RIGHT thing to do at the time - you didn't feel yourself and you couldn't cope with how you felt... how is that your fault? If you didn't make that decision, there is a chance you wouldn't be here now, and how would that be the right thing, for you or for anyone? It might seem different now, now that the fog has lifted and I totally get that - as sometimes I think 'It wasn't that bad, was it?'

But actually, it was.... it was the worst time of my entire life - When you're in that horrible, horrible mood, you'd give anything for someone to take it away from you.

Before getting pregnant again (and I thought the same), perhaps give it some time - work though things, perhaps talk to a counsellor? just take things day to day.... and perhaps in a few months you'll feel it's the right time to try again, then again - you might feel that actually, you're happy with what you have at the moment.

There sadly isn't a definitive right or wrong way to do things, but I would urge you to give it time and be kind to yourself and don't beat yourself up.

findinghope Sun 25-Nov-18 00:02:19

Again, thank you so much for your insight, FluffyPersian. It is extremely nice to be able to ‘talk’ to someone who has been through this. I have been to a therapist twice and plan to continue. It is amazing that when I was pregnant, I could only think of all the negative things about having another baby. Now, that I’m not pregnant, I can see all the reasons why I wanted to start trying in the first place. The mind is very scary, as well as the pregnancy hormones. I’ve never experienced anything like that in my life.

It sounds like you have found peace and that is so hopeful to me. I think that is what I am wishing for most. Just some way to be at peace with this, so I can be whole again for my family. My husband said to me the other day that he just wants me back and it broke my heart. I want me back too!

Thank you so much again for sharing your story and experience with me. It is so greatly appreciated.

Ilovesuperman Sun 25-Nov-18 19:06:40

Ladies you're so strong x

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