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Topic : Dealing with Postpartum Depression

Number of Replies: 188
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Created on : Tuesday, August 08, 2006, 01:58:37 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
Having a baby is a major life change and postpartum depression can affect any woman who is pregnant, has had a baby, miscarried, or ended a pregnancy. Share advice and support here.

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September 5, 2006, 7:12 pm CDT

Dealing with Postpartum Depression

Quote From: mkorpik

May I ask what your symptoms were associated with your PPD?  I am a new mom as well--he'll be 11 months here soon.  I am not sure what is "wrong" with me but I sometimes explode.  I feel as though my head spins like that of the Exocist.  I keep thinking that all I need is some alone time, but I'm beginning to wonder is there is something more to  it.  Thank you for sharing anything that may help me decide what "it" is.

For me I would just explode. The counter in the kitchen would be full of stuff and i would just let go. throw it all on the floor becausei was so frustrated i couldn't keep up the house like I did before I was pregnant. Also, I did not want to leave my bed, didn't care if I showered, ate or did much of anything. The exploding happened right before my periods. but several times driving I would just say to myself, I think I'll just drive off the edge of the freeway. Of course in my mind I was thinking right after that, I want to be the one to raise my daughter. I can't just leave her without a mom. Those were the thoughts that made me talk to my mom and to seek professional help. A good dr. will give you a test to take on your emotions and feeling and will also talk to you before ever giving meds. He will want to talk to your husband and get a feel for u and your needs. He should not just give you meds without a though(sp) exam. of that i am certain You don't want any chemical messing anything that does not need fixing.... Sorry so long...but so v ery important to your health. 

 
September 7, 2006, 6:41 pm CDT

NEW so forgive me if I do this incorrectly

I'm trying to post in post-partum....

Is it possible to feel post-partum towards an adopted child?

My husband and I have two biological children and one adopted. Our adopted child and our oldest are the same age.

I never went through the baby blues with my biological children. Our adopted child, on the other hand... I cannot describe any better what I feel for him then post-partum.

We adopted him when he was 7months old. Both of his parents are deceased. He spent several months in foster care before being placed with us.

I wanted him so badly and was extremely excited to learn that our home study had been accepted and that we were going to be able to adopt him.

A month after he came into our home, I started feeling regret for ever wanting him. He didn't want to be held, touched, nor would he play with us. All he would do is suck a bottle. I told myself that it would get better and, as the monthly visits from the social worker continued, I kept a happy face.

The adoption papers went to the judge and were notarized, sealed and done within 6months. All the while, I felt the same way. How was I going to learn to love a child that wanted nothing to do with me?

As he got older, he wanted to be more apart of our family. He took quickly to my husband and our child of the same age. He still wouldn't have anything to do with me.

Now that he wants my attention, I have none to give him. I feel as if it's too late. I don't like it when he touches me or even when he calls me "mom." Even minute things about him disgust me - I was noticing the shape of his head today and couldn't help but think how odd it was.

It's not just his head or the sound of his voice that makes me cringe. His attitude: he's hard headed and aggressive. He was kicked out of our church's play group for biting and taking toys from the smaller children. I have escorted company out of my house early b/c he seems to get extremely hyper when we have people over (jumping off of the furniture, biting the guests when they try to play with him, and I swear he gives me the "I don't care what you say, I'm doing it anyway" evil eye). I have had people refuse to keep him b/c he is so hyper.

My biological children - yeah, they're your typical kids and have their moments when you feel like burying your head in the sand, but they're good kids. They are invited to all kid events (our adopted is normally excluded or we're told if we have to bring him, do so). One loves to read and will build with his blocks all day long. The other is into music and being outside. Neither have had a bad report from daycare.

I know our adopted child is not a bad kid and I know that I am not a bad mother. But the feelings I have for this kid are sometimes right out scary. Today, he burned himself. I kept telling him to stay out of the kitchen - out of the kitchen! The phone rang, and he pulled down a pot of water on his head. Luckily it wasn't boiling, but it was hot enough to make his skin break out in little ride bumps. Instead of being concerned like any parent would be, I was angry that I had to restart dinner. I put some burn gel on him and called the doctor, then went back to cooking, all the while blaming him for a late dinner. After dinner, we went to the pharmacy to pick up the cream the doc called in. I was so ashamed of my kid that I didn't want to bring him in (I did as the weather is warm, but b/c I was afraid of getting into trouble, not b/c I wanted him with me). I've told my husband that I don't feel like I can be left alone with him any longer then necessary - if he is going to be late from work, he can meet us for dinner at the local McDonald's playground - that way he is out of my hair.

I have never had a negative nerve in my body towards my biological children. They are my sunshines; my worlds. I would die if anyone ever tried to take them from me. But my adopted son... sometimes I wish his parents were still alive and would come back for him. To me, he feels like an extra table setting or another bedroom to clean. B/c of his "playful aggression" I won't let him be alone with our younger child. I don't trust him. I'm so afraid someone is going to find out that I have these regrets and try to take my biological children, calling me mental or whatever, that I almost rescent the power this little adopted boy has over our family.

I wanted to do right... But now I am just trying to cope.

 
September 20, 2006, 7:00 am CDT

Ireland/s story

My post partum turned to grief, and then lead me to a journey of hope.

A Ray of Hope 

Ireland’s tiny little fingers were wrapped one by one around my index finger. Her whole fist did not fit from the end of my nail to my knuckle. I was standing over her, praying that everything would be alright. Even with all the tubes of IV’s and the tape adhering them to her, she was the most beautiful person to enter my life. Seeing her sick was terrifying to me. She was so small, and young, just an innocent child; a little girl whose life had just begun. My body and mind were numb as I watched the doctor pump her little chest. The machines were doing her breathing for her, and the doctor was manually beating her heart. I watched Dr. Katie’s teardrop fall unto my little girl as she said, “She doesn’t have a heartbeat.” My response was, “Give her mine.” I did not want to accept that Ireland Leigh Ann had died. My daughter, my little girl, my dreams had all disappeared with those five words. It had only been three weeks after she was born.

I remember the moment that Dave whispered quietly in my ear, “It’s a girl.” That moment and those words can only be used to describe the day my dreams were filled and all my wishes came true. I had always wanted a little girl, even more so after having two boys. Tayler and Holton had a sister, Dave and I had a daughter. Ireland Leigh Ann Hendrickson was born healthy. She weighed 7 pounds, and she was 20 ½ inches long. She was perfect. Our family was complete and I had my tubes tied. I would no longer be able to conceive anymore children. It seemed like the right decision at that time. Ireland was born by c-section which made the surgery convenient. How did I know that would become the biggest regret in my life? Having my tubes tied was the mistake that has now lead me on a journey of hope, a search to fill the void created by losing Ireland.

I took my daughter home as scheduled and we began our future together. I imagined our life together would be forever. I took her to a routine check-up at two-weeks old. She was meeting all expectations of a newborn. I had even believed she was doing more. After all, I had witnessed a smile. At this young of age, most people had found it hard to believe. A week after the doctor’s visit, Ireland became sick. An airborne bacterium, meningitis, had entered her body. She was too small to fight it off. Ireland died as a result of meningitis on April 6, 2005.

The moment that Ireland’s heart stopped, I felt as if I lost my whole world. I was still a mom, but no longer had a daughter. I was alive but no longer had a soul. I felt as if I had no reason for dreaming.

After months of grief and a period of depression, I started to seek “hope.” Hope to complete our family again, and to fill the void; the emptiness I still feel inside. A will to continue the bond created by a wish that once came true; a dream that had been filled. A love from a daughter I had only gotten to know for three short weeks. Upon our search for hope, my husband and I discovered In Vitro Fertilization. This is a procedure in which eggs are removed from a woman and fertilized in a petri dish to create cells, or an embryo. The eggs are then implanted into the woman’s uterus, allowing her to carry her own baby. During this procedure, once the cells are formed they can be tested for chromosomes. This allows couples to choose the gender of the baby.

Although this method is very costly, we have chosen it. We have the guarantee of conceiving a girl. I do not want a little girl strictly because I do not have one, but because I had one. I know the bond and how it differs between a mother and daughter. We are currently working out a way to afford the procedure. For us it is the possibility that makes us a little stronger each day. Having hope takes away the pain, one moment at a time.

My heart aches for Ireland, and she will never be replaced. The day Ireland died was the day Tayler and Holton lost a piece of their mother. A daughter would not only complete our family, but it would give two other children back their mother. She will be the missing piece to complete us. Having another child is not a solution to grief, but having a daughter is the answer to my prayers. Arayah Hope, her name, would not only be an addition to our family, but another dream come true; a ray of hope.

 
September 20, 2006, 9:23 pm CDT

Don't be ashamed!!

I gave birth to a little girl 2 1/2 years ago. When she was 6 weeks old I finally went to my doctor about my depression. I realized the thoughts I was having were not normal and I was missing out on so much. I had been dealing with clinical depression since I was a teenager, but this was totally different. It was affecting my relationship with my husband and the other people in my household. I was lucky enough to have the education to recognize what was going on but also the support of my family to get help. I am now expecting my second child in a few months and I have already discussed preventive measures for a reaccurance of my depression with my family doctor and my OBGYN. I never want to experience the sadness and hopelessness I once felt so I will be taking medication before any symptoms arise. To anyone who is going through this, don't be ashamed to ask for help. Do what you can for yourself and your family, whether it be medication, counseling, etc., so that you don't miss out on some of the most important months/years in your childrens lives. It is not a disgrace to have PPD and remember that you are not alone. 
 
September 21, 2006, 8:46 am CDT

waaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!

i am a mom of a 3 year old girl & a 4 month old boy. when my daughter was born i was sick in the hospital for 3 1/2 months with gall bladder &pancreas probs. my mom had my daughter at night cause my hubby had to go to work, & i had for very little time bymyself during the day. now th at i had my son, i have been at home with both klids all day while their daddy is at work & i cant take much more crying. all he does is cry all day & my daughter wont listen to me &bugs me all day. i feel klike i have no time to myself. i am even holding my son as i type this with 1 hand. he is dry, full, & has all the toys we could afford & he still cries allday. what in th e world can i do to make him happy. he used to sleep through the night, but about a month ago he started waking up in the middle of the night again. this morning he woke up at 3 &didnt go back to sleep til almost 4:40am . i am not getting any sleep at all , i cant do it anymore. my body hurts, my head feels like it is going toblowup, & i have no family close enough to go to them more than 1 every 2 weeks. my inlaws live 2 miles away & never offer to take either kid. they take my sister-in-laws kids all the time &they act worse than mine do, they are 11 & 9. i feel like i have no support from them, like they care that i am having a difficult time with the kids & that thjier son doesnt help me with asnything at all. i do the house, kids,cooking, & everything else. i want to go outside & scream my bloody head off!!!!!!!!  HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
September 22, 2006, 8:14 am CDT

PPD is no joke

I had PPD after both of my children were born. Beware of people who will know that you are depressed and take advantage of you. I never saw it coming because I was too wrapped up in myself. You have got to snap out of it now. Get help from licensed professionals. Do not be embarrassed to seek help, be embarrassed if you don't. You cannot wallow in depression or you will lose all that you care about. I know because I have lost my children. I may never get them back. The state did not take them from me, my own sister did. You cannot change what you have done in the past, but you can change what you do now.  I had no warning that I was about to lose my children. I was blindsided, but when I look back now I know that it did not happen overnight. I love my children with all my heart, and I did then, but it was not enough. I was manipulated, but that is no excuse. You have got to want to get better, I tried and failed many times. It took losing what was really important to me to finally see the light. Don't let it happen to you. Get help.
 
September 22, 2006, 12:15 pm CDT

I know how you feel

Quote From: m_catgirl

I knew from the begining when I gave birth to my 2 year old daughter that something wasn't right.  I knew all the signs, read all the info.....but was determined to "fix" myself. I mean...I had everything I ever wanted: A loving husband, beautiful baby, nice house, a stayathome mom....My daughter was 9 months old before I broke down and went to see my doctor.  I actually scheduled the visit as a "physical" because I was too embarassed to say "I think i have PPD".  Keep in mind this is at the height of the Brooke Sheilds/Tom Cruise debate!  When I became pregnant again, I was smarter and started  taking the meds as a precaution the 2nd time around.  Eventhough my OB essentially laughed at me for "pretreating" something that may not even be an issue this time.  I'm feeling great now.  Love to talk to anyone else with this problem.

It's amazing how similiar our stories are.  I, too, knew from the beginning that I was having more than Post Partum Blues.  I kept telling my husband my thoughts and feelings were "normal" and would go away in a couple of weeks.  He believed me at first. I think he did so mostly because breastfeeding didn't go so well, I wasn't getting much sleep and because I was in nursing school at the time and told him I learned that all of this was normal. Finally, he told me that I needed to go see my OB (pretty much demanded that I go).  At that time my son was 4 weeks old.  From that point, my OB loved my husband because she was so impressed with how intune he was with me and my feelings.  Well, there is this saying amongst nurses that pretty much goes like this:  We are the second worst patients, doctors are first:  We know just enough to be dangerous.  Basically, I took myself off of the medication I was on because after I started feeling better, I didn't think I needed it anymore. Of course it was the medication that made me feel better and I soon started having the same feelings.  By this time, I realized I was pregnant again (my son was only 4 months old). I was so heartbroken. The way I felt I never wanted anymore children and just couldn't believe I had managed to get myself pregnant again.  At any rate, I decided not to go back on the medication (because of the risks) while I was pregnant and I must say it was probably around the time my son turned 9 months old did I feel better.  Of course my hormones were going crazy and I was not the easiest person to live with (to say the least).  Being pregnant for virtually 2 years, going through nursing school, beginning a new career, and learning how to handle/cope with being a mom was difficult for me to balance all at one time. In addition to the fact that me and my husband had only been married for 2 years when our son was born.  I told myself once this baby "popped out" I was going back on my medication immediately so I wouldn't feel the way I did with my son.  My daughter is 2 1/2 weeks old and I kept my promise to myself and my husband (no one else knows about my PPD because of my embarrassment to tell anyone).  I am happy to say that I am happy.  When I was in the hospital, I didn't have as many crying spells as I did with my son and luckily the medication doesn't take long to get into my system.  Things are going well and life is good.  There was a time in my life that I resented being pregnant, having kids.  There were about 5 couples that my husband and I knew that couldn't have kids and I felt guilty that I didn't want my son. I am so glad I "snapped out of it" because he is the best thing in my life. I am starting to form that same bond with my daughter as well.  14 months ago I never thought I would feel like I do today. I thought I was going to dread the rest of my life being a mom but I don't. I look forward to what each new day brings. 

 

Sorry this is so long. I find that journaling (I journal my diaries on this website) has really been therapeutic for me. It really helps me get my feelings out and I as I re-read my journal posts it helps me see the progress I've made. 

 

How are you feeling now?  I'll check back soon to see if you have replied. I would enjoy talking to anyone as well who has/had PPD.  We can all learn a lot from each other!

 
September 22, 2006, 1:51 pm CDT

He said "who cares"

When my first child was born I felt great I breastfed him for 9 months I only stopped because I had to start an antibiotic.  When he was 15 months old I became pregnant and after the birth of my second son I decided to go ahead and get "my tubes tied"  I was perfectly fine with this choice and so was my husband.  Not long after that I began to feel run down and tired which I thought was normal with a toddler and a new born who I also was breastfeeding so I tried to pay no attention to it , but I began crying all the time and mostly for no reason I also started to get mad really mad at the slightest thing like if my husband slept in on the weekend, it was all over silly things.  Now around this time I also began to get migranes something which I have always dealt with but the pain was constantly increasing and I didn't want to take anything because for fear that it would hurt the baby.  Eventually I had take something and thus had to stop breastfeeding he was only 3 months old, and with the baby now taking a bottle my husband could now feed him and before long the baby didn't want me to feed him he only wanted his daddy and this just crushed me I felt like I had failed him by not being able to stick out the pain and continue to breastfeed. At my 6 month check up I sat in the chair in my doctors office and began to cry I told him everything, and when he asked me if I wanted to take a medication to help get through this time I honestly felt insulted at first I thought to my self what kind of a mother am I if I need drugs to help me, but my doctor talked about how it was nothing that I had to do but he would give me a 10 day trial and if I felt that it helped at all I could get a prescription.  So I went home and felt embarassed so much that I did not even tell my husband at first but when he went to get the checkbook from my purse he pulled out my trial and prescription and asked me about it I told him that I was to embarassed to take that I didn't want to be known as someone who needed drugs to cope with her kids, but he said "who cares" and it hit me that I was passing up a chance to feel better about myself  and I was more worried about what someone else may think.  Now with exercise and my medicine I am feeling better about staying home with my boys. I just wish the baby weight would come off a little easier.
 
September 22, 2006, 2:09 pm CDT

PPD

I vividly remember watching my 8 week old sleep and thinking, "My God, he is absolutely PERFECT...but I'M not."  I knew something was wrong with me.  I had already been to my 6 week post partum check up and the doctor asked all the questions about post partum depression and I didn't have any of them...inability to bond, feeling inadequate, etc.  Unfortunately, I WAS having other symptoms...ones that aren't traditionally associated with PPD rather a form of PPD called post partum anxiety.  I was having frequent panic attacks and repetitive nightmares about harming the baby.  The nightmares were so disturbing that I once spent 2 nights in a row at my kitchen table with a pot of coffee and a couple of magazines because I was afraid to go to sleep. My husband was out of town.  Exhaustion made it worse.  I summoned every ounce of fortitude I had to combat the nightmares.  I thought I could outsmart them.  Once I was diagnosed, I went to counseling with a fabulous psychologist who truly understood my disorder and helped me to understand it as well.  She explained that my nightmares were like a Chinese finger puzzle where the more you fight them, the worse they get.  I couldn't beat it on my own and admitting that wasn't weak.   I read books and I took medication.  The medication stopped my nightmares within 3 nights.  I couldn't believe it!  When I became pregnant with my second son, the nightmares returned.  At 13 weeks gestation, the doctor put me on anti-depressants again.  I was concerned about taking them while pregnant but there was no adverse affect on the baby.  He just turned 4 and he is undoubtedly FINE.  (And so am I!)  If you need help, please get it.  If your doctor doesn't understand, find another one.  Help IS available.  You don't have to live in pain.

 
September 22, 2006, 5:04 pm CDT

words of encouragement

Quote From: ibdqt34

It's amazing how similiar our stories are.  I, too, knew from the beginning that I was having more than Post Partum Blues.  I kept telling my husband my thoughts and feelings were "normal" and would go away in a couple of weeks.  He believed me at first. I think he did so mostly because breastfeeding didn't go so well, I wasn't getting much sleep and because I was in nursing school at the time and told him I learned that all of this was normal. Finally, he told me that I needed to go see my OB (pretty much demanded that I go).  At that time my son was 4 weeks old.  From that point, my OB loved my husband because she was so impressed with how intune he was with me and my feelings.  Well, there is this saying amongst nurses that pretty much goes like this:  We are the second worst patients, doctors are first:  We know just enough to be dangerous.  Basically, I took myself off of the medication I was on because after I started feeling better, I didn't think I needed it anymore. Of course it was the medication that made me feel better and I soon started having the same feelings.  By this time, I realized I was pregnant again (my son was only 4 months old). I was so heartbroken. The way I felt I never wanted anymore children and just couldn't believe I had managed to get myself pregnant again.  At any rate, I decided not to go back on the medication (because of the risks) while I was pregnant and I must say it was probably around the time my son turned 9 months old did I feel better.  Of course my hormones were going crazy and I was not the easiest person to live with (to say the least).  Being pregnant for virtually 2 years, going through nursing school, beginning a new career, and learning how to handle/cope with being a mom was difficult for me to balance all at one time. In addition to the fact that me and my husband had only been married for 2 years when our son was born.  I told myself once this baby "popped out" I was going back on my medication immediately so I wouldn't feel the way I did with my son.  My daughter is 2 1/2 weeks old and I kept my promise to myself and my husband (no one else knows about my PPD because of my embarrassment to tell anyone).  I am happy to say that I am happy.  When I was in the hospital, I didn't have as many crying spells as I did with my son and luckily the medication doesn't take long to get into my system.  Things are going well and life is good.  There was a time in my life that I resented being pregnant, having kids.  There were about 5 couples that my husband and I knew that couldn't have kids and I felt guilty that I didn't want my son. I am so glad I "snapped out of it" because he is the best thing in my life. I am starting to form that same bond with my daughter as well.  14 months ago I never thought I would feel like I do today. I thought I was going to dread the rest of my life being a mom but I don't. I look forward to what each new day brings. 

 

Sorry this is so long. I find that journaling (I journal my diaries on this website) has really been therapeutic for me. It really helps me get my feelings out and I as I re-read my journal posts it helps me see the progress I've made. 

 

How are you feeling now?  I'll check back soon to see if you have replied. I would enjoy talking to anyone as well who has/had PPD.  We can all learn a lot from each other!

10 Things We for Take for Granted

                                    Brenda Minge-Mitchell

 

Many of us are so inundated with our own personal traumas and dramas that we tend to totally lose focus of our own personal blessings.  I am not referring to things we can gain and attain in life such as our homes or worldly possessions.  I am talking about the things you have without having anything.  The 10 things we all take for granted.

 

  1. Recognize your emotional and spiritual achievements and successes
    1. How you have changed (+/-) during last 5 years
    2. Why did you made these changes (have to/want to/forced to)
    3. What is next on the list
  2. Recognizing others through their inner beauty and inner strengths
    1. Are you so narrow minded that you only see what you want to see
    2. Write down the first 3 things you notice about someone after talking to them 5 min
    3. Seeing some ones inner beauty can reflect back your own ugly attitude
  3. Celebrate yourself
    1. You are an individual unlike anyone else in this universe
    2. Look in a mirror – accept yourself who you are & as you are this minute
    3. Know that through all your imperfections you have a beautiful Spirit
    4. In some way you are a special gift to this world
  4. To know Bliss within your self
    1. Set aside 5 minutes each day to just be quiet, content & at peace with your self
    2. Do NOT make problems bigger than they are – keep it simple
    3. Bliss is so basic and so easy we make it hard to find
  5. Know your Spirit will live forever through what you every day
    1. A piece of you lives on in everything you touch
    2. There will always be a memory of you some where in this world good or bad
  6. Appreciate the blessings of Empathy, Sympathy and Compassion
    1. I personally know apathetic people – they are like lost souls walking through life
    2. Caring, sharing and love are some of the most powerful energies in the universe
    3. These 3 things have the power to heal & support life – Emotional Life Support
  7. Realize that you can create a Miracle in some one’s life
    1. The smallest acts can hold the greatest power in influencing some ones life
    2. I once gave a lady a wheelchair, it gave her a sense of dignity and independence
  8. Appreciate your own inner wisdom
    1. Wisdom does not come from books, it comes from experience, age and your heart
  9. Love has NO rules or barriers
    1. Love does not know parameters or guidelines it is as free and open as the Universe

    10.  The power of Forgiveness is second only to the power of Love

    1. Forgiveness can heal a relationship, a broken heart, a broken spirit almost anything
    2. Forgiveness is Life’s Universal Band-Aid
    3. Forgiving yourself is just as important as forgiving others

 

SO LIVE LIFE WITH OPEN EYES, OPEN ARMS

 AND AN OPEN HEART

 
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