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PPD survivors, check in here!

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I know I am not the only one in our DDC. How's everyone doing especially now that we are getting so close? I would love to hear others' perspectives and plans for the upcoming post-partum period.

Dh and I have been talking a lot about what led to PPD last time, what things we can change, what things we can change our reactions/coping mechanisms to, and how to know when (IF) I need help again. I am honestly a bit scared but feeling hopeful at the same time. What about you?
post #2 of 18
I'm here with you, paisley I have had PPD after the births of each of my children, and I do feel that it's likely to happen again. I have a plan in place with my midwife, and I will probably begin taking a low-dose anti-depressant shortly after (or maybe even right before) she is born. I know that is a little controversial here, but I feel that I just "lost" the enjoyable parts of my postpartum time with my others. I really don't want that to happen to me again. Plus, once it starts for me, it tends to be a fast, hard fall. And I don't rebound.

Hoping we all come through with healthy, happy babies AND moms.
post #3 of 18
I was never able to wean off medication after my daughter. I didnt' get treatment until she was about 9 months old, and had been terrified this time around. I went to see my NP, and she said a few things that put me at ease.

1. Women that are treated during are much less likely to have a severe bout of ppd.
2. Women that are NOT treated during pregnancy are much MORE likely. (this made me feel good about the decision not to come off meds despite the pressure from my old midwife).
3. If I am concerned, immediately following delivery, we can up my dosage slightly to try and offset, and then come back down about 6 months later.
4. We have told my dh and my mother that if beyond the first 6 weeks, they feel I am sinking down, they should call her, and she will call me and make an appointment.
post #4 of 18
I never took any meds, but had terrible PPD with my last babe. I didn't have the *normal* symptoms though and it took me about six months to finally admit that I was having problems. It was awful. I was constantly filled w/anxiety about everything. I would wake up in the night in a panic certain that the baby wasn't breathing. When my older two walked down the stairs I often about had a heart attack. I could barely tolerate them being in the pool or bathtub because I was certain that something terrible was going to happen. It was HORRID. I am certain that a large part of the anxiety was thyroid related (I had a large malignant tumor removed/half of my thyroid a couple years ago) and so I think my body was trying to readjust to not being pregnant. I am petrified that it will happen again. I did a lot of talking with my parents (my mom is a CNM) and I knew that I could admit any of my crazy thoughts to DH. I think my Dad was most concerned that I would hurt myself because I was so worried about the kids all the time. But I never had any thoughts of that, probably because my support system is so strong. I'm hoping to avoid it this time, but I'm not really sure what to do differently.
post #5 of 18
I'm terrified of it coming back.

I had severe PPD after Dd, it started right about 6wks pp and didn't really go away until she was nearly a year. I think somewhere around 7-8 months pp I realized what it was, but I refused to see anyone about it. I was so ashamed and embarrassed, and was convinced that they would make me stop nursing - which was about the only positive thing I had going in my life at the time.

I found out after the fact that Dh, my mom and MIL all noticed things were "different" but never said anything. I'm most surprised my mother never spoke up because she's seen me go through depression before.

When I was pregnant with Ds I was very clear to everyone around me that I wanted them to step in if I started to lose it again. I talked endlessly about it with my midwives and learned to not be so afraid to share how I was feeling. But somehow I knew throughout that pregnancy that things were different. I felt lighter and much better prenatally than I did with Dd. After Ds was born I had a few rocky first days - those initial baby blues that just seemed compounded by the fact that it was Christmas and that every bit of family descended upon us. But that was it. I waited and waited for the "other shoe to drop" but it never did.

This time... This pregnancy is emotionally so similar to Dd's. I'm terrified that it's a girl because in my mind girls bring PPD (I know this isn't true, but this is my irrational pregnancy brain). I talked to my midwives at my last appointment about treating it. I'm planning on encapsulating my placenta and we're also planning on me getting back on my meds for my hormone issues as soon as I deliver. We think that my hormone imbalance contributes greatly to my moods. (This should have the double effect of helping balance out my milk supply too.) I think I'm also afraid of just being overwhelmed with my two silly crazy kids and a newborn. I'm optimistic, but cautious.
post #6 of 18
I had pretty bad PPD after Robin's birth. I'm expecting it again. Although once I recognized it as PPD and claimed it, I felt a bit more in control. It was just so hormonal - I could almost physically feel it lifting when she was just under a year. It wasn't fully gone, but mostly and it faded pretty quickly after that. I had said that I would never do that to myself or my child/children again - I would definitely seek medication if I have it again. I'm not super pro-meds, but for me PPD is so chemical, I'm totally willing to use chemicals to address it. But now we are in a unique position - we are probably moving back to china at 5-7 weeks post partum, possibly before PPD really sets in. So I'm not sure if I'll seek meds here or try to do so there if I need them - but I will definitely try to be aggressive about treating it this time.

My situation is very different this time around also. We moved a few days after RObin's birth, into MIL and FIL's house b/c we moved towns and hadn't sold our house yet. So I had no space or feeling of control over my home, plus all the transitions of new motherhood, leaving a job and city i loved, moving in with people who have very different values than me, etc. It was TOO much change all at once - i feel like I set myself up for PPD. This time around, I am worried about the logistical difficulties of having 2, of being in Shanghai w/o a car or a network of family for support. But, DH and I have so much more time together there, so much more family time and control over our time and space. I'm just trying to be more realistic about what I can and can't handle and not set myself up for hard times.

Also, I felt like physical activity helped me feel so much better when struggling with PPD after Robin, and so did feeling like I had physically recovered after her birth. So I am dedicated to helping myself heal and getting active soon after birth - and DH is very supportive of anything that will help me feel better. Having him on my side was so priceless, and I don't know that I would have ever felt better without his help before.
post #7 of 18
Add me to the ppd list. I just got a script for paxil to start at 35 weeks (2 more weeks) I missed out on al lthe nb bonding with my boys because I was so depressed. I'm praying this helps.....It's just a terrible feeling being depressed.
I even have my oldest ds (6) on a waiting list for a local Charter school (I homeschooled him this year.) incase my depression comes back. I am alos looking into dvd curiculum... My D.O. reccomended I not homeschool him next year because its just one more thing adding to my anxiety/depression. He was a hs daddy to 7 kidsso he knows what hs'ing is like.

post #8 of 18
I didn't realize it was PPD until I was about 9 months postpartum. I had made an appt. with my GP because I was sure something fatal was wrong with me. I was so sad and anxious at the same time ALL the time. My GP told me he thought it was probably PPD after doing a large battery of tests. He prescribed Zoloft. I never took it because I was too afraid. But after doing lots of research and reading the responses here, I will definitely take it if I feel the same way after this birth. I can't live that way again. I was constantly worried that something was going to happen to DS, DH and I, so much that I would stay awake all night coming up with rescue/emergency plans. This time DH and I have talked about all of the things that might make our adjustment period easier, so hopefully that will help too. Good luck to all of you mamas! Sometimes it helps to know we are not alone in this.
post #9 of 18
I'm still not 100% sure if I had PPD as it's normally defined, but I definitely had some bad problems with my recovery from an unexpected Csec, loss of job, loss of my own quiet space, feeling overwhelmed, and emotional trauma. I needed more help than I got. Instead of going down a hole in depression, I became aggressiv and very angry. I never hurt my sweet dd, but I pounded on the couch next to her in complete frustration, or I would hit and kick walls until I hurt my hands or feet, screaming my head off. Maybe that's just the flipside of PPD? I did cry a lot and I felt the whole first year after dd was born was REALLY hard.
I'm not sure what I should watch out for this time. They always say having a second kid is harder for the first year or two until they can play with each other. I will certainly try to balance things nutritionally, as well as ask for help in a more obvious way.
What are some of the warning signs that you found on the path towards PPD???
post #10 of 18
I had a short but intense period of PPD with my son. This time around I am going to try to head it off at the pass. My midwife will help me freeze my placenta so that it can be used for pills should my PPD return. Also, I think at about 6 weeks post-partum I am going to schedule visits with my chiropractor and mental health counselor. Maybe even an appointment with an acupuncturist if necessary. Hopefully doing a little preventative maintenance will help me avoid PPD or at least lessen the severity.
post #11 of 18
I am right there with you. We're hiring a postpartum doula this time so that I have some help for the first few weeks. DH will also take off a few weeks. I've been on meds since PPD with DD and will be checking in with my therapist as often as I need to. I'm hoping this all will be helpful. I am a little nervous about it as well but I feel like I have done what I can to prepare.
post #12 of 18
Although I wasn't diagnosed with PPD after DD was born, it seems that I did have a pretty severe case, plus PTSD from her birth. It had largely resolved, but reared it's head again in this pregnancy and I've been suffering from a pretty major depression and PTSD through most of this pregnancy. (Not sure I like all these labels - but it seems that that's the best description).

I've avoided medication so far, but am seeing a psychiatrist weekly and will continue after the baby is born.

It's been rough and I'm pretty worried about how I'll cope when the baby comes (as well as how much longer DH can really handle the burden of looking after absolutely everything and being my main/only emotional support).

I'm planning on likely starting meds shortly after the baby is born and hopefully learned something from the first time (i.e.: requesting actual help, declining all visitors and reducing obligations to baby and self care only).
post #13 of 18

speaking of

this scares me. absolutely terrifies me.

i know how i am, and i know how i get. and maybe negative thinking is going to do more harm than good, but i've been thinking about this for a while. in a way i feel as if i have no business even posting on this thread, because i can't imagine what you ladies have been through, but i actually just mentioned ppd in another thread, and i already feel myself sinking...

help... is there a fine line between preparation and negativity?

seriously... i don't know what to do.
post #14 of 18

I need advice:

My Dr. wants me to start ppd meds no later than 36 weeks. He has prescribed Paxil. I'm nervous to start it because of the thngs I've heard about antidepressants and pregnancy. I dont know what to do here.....is taking the meds and possibly risking the health of my baby worth it? On the other hand taking to meds after delivery, It'll take them a few weeks to kick in and I had severe ppd after my last baby. I dont want my kids and dh to suffer through that either.....it was so bad last time I could not eat or drink anything without vomiting it back up, I had to have iv's and go to the hospital. It was a very hard time for me and our family.
What are/would you do in my situation?
post #15 of 18
BWB - Have you looked into the resources on PPD on MDC? I was looking into breastfeeding and meds for my SIL, and there are several that seem to have very minimal risks/effects. I found links and resources via the PPD threads. I would do some research and decide what you are comfortable with. It's a personal decision. At this point, I would definitley take meds if I thought I needed them. But isn't there a bit of a delay b/tw birth and the onset of PPD? Was that your experience, or was is pretty immediate?

Nani - that sounds like PPD to me. Everyone processes it differently. I had some incredible anger, rage, and frustration too. It wasn't the only symptom, but it was there. I think irrational, out-of-proportion responses are definitely part of PPD - little things or normal things (like a baby fighting sleep, or somthing just not going right) can send you over the edge.
post #16 of 18
Becca, my ppd hit hard at 6 days post partum. So I dont really hae much of a delay.
post #17 of 18
Originally Posted by deuxceleste View Post
help... is there a fine line between preparation and negativity?

seriously... i don't know what to do.
deuxceleste--I think that the fine line between preparation and negativity is awareness. If you are aware of the emotional highs and lows you are capable of, it makes perfect sense to make yourself aware of PPD. Can you see a therapist, whether or not PPD sets in? I think it's a very good sign (and not a sign of negativity) that you want to keep on top of this. Just knowing there could potentially be a problem is a big step in solving it.
post #18 of 18


I have to come up with some sort of plan, in case PPD rears it's ugly head. I felt so overwhelmed when dd was born... and I didn't even really know that what I had could be PPD. Is it worse the second time around? I already feel a lot of ups and downs right now and I crave alone time, which I'm sure I won't get when the baby is here.
I guess I'll lurk in teh PPD forum a bit to get some advice, but it would also be good for us here in our ddc to update each other and find support, just in case.
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