I guess I just need a little support. I was really hoping to stay off meds all during this pregnancy but I just got a small dose of Zoloft filled yesterday. I called the MW because I knew it was going downhill fast. I was crying a lot, way too reactive with my kids, and was pretty much only doing the basics of home and child care. It was a huge effort to get out of bed. I was functioning, but I didn't want to wait till I was non-functional yk?
I have had to take an SSRI now 3 out of 6 pregnancies. It seems to be worse in subsequent pregnancies and I wonder if it has to do with nutrition depletion or just being more exhausted by child care. Let me explain. I have three teens and a big 8 year gap and then 3 more (the last one being the one I am pg with) I didn't have to take meds with DS1 or DS2. I can see in hindsight I was mildly depressed but more from adjusting to the isolation of being home 24/7. By DS3 it was getting bad byt the nurse told me no antidepressants were safe during pregnancy. By 7 mos, I honestly felt like I was suffocating, like a load of bricks was crushing me. I talked the OB who apologized and said that there are options and that being on antidepressants is better for the baby than being depressed. After I started the antidepressant, it was like someone opened a window in a very stuffy room. I will never forget that relief!
When DS3 was 8 I got a surprise BFP. I was working and happy and I don't remember any sign of depression at all. We had some feeding issues and I couldn't pump so I decided to resign my teaching position and return to SAHM. I again struggled with depression and had a long host of reasons why (lots of trouble with my oldest teen's behavior, financial issues related to going to one income, isolation, family conflicts and the ever present jerk of an XH issues) but eventually went to the doctor who put me on Zoloft. I did really well, it helped take the edge off and least and increase my coping skills for the difficult situations I was facing. When I got pregnant with DS5, I decided to stay on the Zoloft per the recommendation of my midwife. I am really glad I did and DS5 is a wonderful healthy and happy boy and while we definitely had challenges during that time, I wasn't depressed and was able to cope.
I know the research about SSRI's during pregnancy are inconclusive and/or somewhat worrisome, but I also know that having untreated depression and anxiety and stress hormones coursing through your system 24/7 have a long history of suggesting problems with the baby too. I waited far too long with DS3 and spent most of my pregnancy profoundly depressed. He is the most anxious child today and I feel like maybe stewing him in that cocktail of stress hormones for 7-8 months was a contributing factor. It was a huge deciding factor for me to stay on the Zoloft with DS5 and go on it again. We are done after this, I think my body is done and my mind definitely is. So I feel a mix right now of gratitude for treatment and guilt that I needed it (and a little worried that I maybe waited too long - I am 26 weeks). Thanks for listening.