Uncontrollable anger, a violent outburst and pregnancy - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 08:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am really desperate for some feedback here, so I hope I've come to the right place. It is going to be so hard to write what I am about to write, but I must do it.

I want to know a) if any of you have dealt with uncontrollable fits of anger during pregnancy, b) if it has ever escalated to physical violence, and c) how you coped.

This past weekend I went completely wacko and pretty much forced my DP out of my life. When I saw he was actually going to leave, I went ballistic. I totally lost my mind and after thinking he intentionally hit me, I got physical with him. My two boys saw much of our exchange and a neighbor called the police. It was the worst night of my life. We now have a domestic dispute on our record.

To back up, I was a very violent child and was actually sent to boarding school at the age of 14 after a really bad fight with my (then alcoholic) mom. From the age of 15-23 I was in an abusive relationship/marriage, but I really didn't know any better. I don't remember the last time I was hit or I hit that husband, but I am guessing it was about 1998 or so.

Between then and last weekend, I only struck one other person, and that was my second husband. I physically attacked him once, while I was pregnant with my second child.

This pregnancy is by FAR the most emotional yet. I really feel RAGE coursing through my veins over the smallest things. I am generally not an angry person so this is very hard to handle.

I must admit I am absolutely scared sh*tless of my unpredictability. I have already set an appointment for getting councelling, but will that be enough? How can I protect my DP from myself? I keep wanting to push him completelt out of my life in an attempt to save him from me, but I know that is not the answer. I just love him too much.

I know I am not alone because one of my best friend's DH told me he has been physically attacked in every one of his wife's 3 pregnancies, and she is not a violent girl at all.

What is going on with me? I am so ashamed. I don't know how to ever face DP's family after he told them an exaggerated version of what happened that night. I feel like a leper and a pariah. I feel like I am a useless, toxic piece of crap that should be feared. I feel like a malfunctioning machine. I have made my DP into a victim of abuse. I have become an abuser.

How, how, how can I start to heal from this? And how can I protect against it happening again? I am not due until October. That is a looooonnngg time from now. I am so, so, so scared.

All feedback will be most appreciated.

Syrinx, Soulmate to Pan, Mama to Zion (5), River (3), Silver (1) and expecting a baby Storm...
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#2 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 08:26 PM
 
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I'm sorry.

You need counseling.

Irritability during pregnancy is perfectly normal. The hormones in pregnancy are like the worst PMS *EVER*.

However, with your past history, I don't think you've ever had a chance to learn to deal with your anger appropriately and that's what counseling would be for.

In the meanwhile, having had less violent episodes of rage myself, I recommend getting access to a gym with a punching bag.

And you aren't broken, or flawed, just a normal person who is struggling alone, but can get better.
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#3 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 08:26 PM
 
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during my first pregnancy i flipped out on hubby and threw a fan at him. we were having issues in the marriage and i wanted him to leave. i did not know i was pregnant at the time but think that me throwing the fan had to do with hormones. i was already in counseling at the time and continued to go till about last year. we worked on my anger issues from childhood and learning to forgive which i had not done until this year i am 29 and was still angry from things back from when i was 5. although justified i had to learn i was hurting myself and not them and i was wasting energy. i hope you and hubby work things out. the best advice my husband would give to your hubby is do not engage in any fight because he won't win. i hope that counseling will help and don't expect it to work over night i was in therepy for 4 years before i was able to let go of my anger.
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#4 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 08:35 PM
 
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I'm sorry you're dealing with this. Please understand you aren't a bad person for having anger issues. The important thing is that you are recognizing the problem and seeking help for it.
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#5 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 08:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post


I'm sorry.

You need counseling.

Irritability during pregnancy is perfectly normal. The hormones in pregnancy are like the worst PMS *EVER*.

However, with your past history, I don't think you've ever had a chance to learn to deal with your anger appropriately and that's what counseling would be for.

In the meanwhile, having had less violent episodes of rage myself, I recommend getting access to a gym with a punching bag.

And you aren't broken, or flawed, just a normal person who needs help.
Thanks, SC. I am actually already in counselling, so I am really warm to the idea of more.

I know you were meaning nothing but support, but I really have a hard time with the specific words "you need help". That's exactly what DP said as he was looking at me like I was a rabid animal. I wish there was another way to dsay the same thing.

I do appreciate your words,though. Thanks so much

Syrinx, Soulmate to Pan, Mama to Zion (5), River (3), Silver (1) and expecting a baby Storm...
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#6 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 09:15 PM
 
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First, hugs... and know that you're definitely moving in the right direction. It's so scary to be out of control. :-/

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Originally Posted by animus_silvae View Post
I must admit I am absolutely scared sh*tless of my unpredictability. I have already set an appointment for getting councelling, but will that be enough?
It might, but it sounds like there's a good chance it will take more than that, at least on a short-term basis. That's the place to start, though, and (IMO) an absolutely essential part of *any* treatment plan.

The other two things you probably need to consider are: drugs, and dietary change.

Especially when you're pregnant, the idea of medications is pretty intimidating. However... they can be of enormous help, and especially with your other children around, it's essential that you get to a place quickly where you can keep physical control. If it takes medication to do that, well... that's what it's for. You wouldn't say no to a cast on a broken leg; you know it's not going to be there forever, and that the leg needs support while the bone mends. The counseling is about the healing, but the medication would be about the support to help you do what you need to do *while* you're healing.

The reason I mention dietary change is that I know a lot, and I mean a LOT, of people, both children and adults, who find that certain foods basically make them crazy. My son, for example, goes off the deep end if he eats canola oil. Granted, he's only 3, but still... all his exception-handling abilities go completely out the window; he gets hyper (running up and down the house flapping his arms and hyperventilating hyper), he hits us (which is really unusual for him), and his sleep gets notably disrupted. 24 hours after he stops eating canola oil, it all disappears and he's himself again. Other foods that cause neurological effects in people I know include gluten, dairy, corn, soy, artificial colors/flavors, and preservatives. Some folks also have chemical sensitivities that cause neurological symptoms if they are exposed to pesticides, herbicides, or artificial fragrances, for example.

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Originally Posted by animus_silvae View Post
How can I protect my DP from myself? I keep wanting to push him completelt out of my life in an attempt to save him from me, but I know that is not the answer. I just love him too much.
At the moment, if your rage is directed primarily at him, the simplest way to protect him is to keep him out of arm's reach. Talk to him on the phone, write him letters, but just don't let yourself get within striking distance. Meanwhile, talk to your counselor about more immediate measures you can take to get control of yourself back full-time, and when you feel like something's working, give it a try. Hopefully, he will see the efforts you're making and be supportive of them. He's probably pretty scared right now... both of you and for you, so it may take some effort for him to give it a try, but just be as patient as you can be and let him come to it on his own.

Quote:
Originally Posted by animus_silvae View Post
What is going on with me? I am so ashamed. I don't know how to ever face DP's family after he told them an exaggerated version of what happened that night. I feel like a leper and a pariah. I feel like I am a useless, toxic piece of crap that should be feared. I feel like a malfunctioning machine. I have made my DP into a victim of abuse. I have become an abuser.
And by saying that, you've recognized some very difficult and scary things, and that's the single most important part of changing that pattern. You're going to be ok, just keep your eyes on who you want to be, who you are working on being, who you need to be for your family. It's probably helpful that this is a more or less temporary effect of the pregnancy, but given your history, you'll probably find that it's more a matter of there being underlying issues that, in the absence of pregnancy hormones, you can keep under control... but what you do inside to keep that control may not be healthy. (Or maybe I'm just projecting from my own experience. ;-) Ah, well, we write what we know.)

Best of luck. Pregnancy is tough, all on its own. It's even harder for you than it is for most of us. But you'll get where you need to be, just keep working at it.
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#7 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 09:20 PM
 
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Have you ever read "The Mood Cure"? Perhaps along with the violence in the past you are low in some essential amino acids that cause the rage/anger/outbursts. I read the book a few times but skimmed over those parts since it wasnt my particular struggle (everything else was though ) but I know it had info there. My Rage issues were linked with my hyperthyroid, once that resolved it was pretty much gone (with a lot of damaged relationships to clean up )

http://moodcure.com/Questionnaire.html

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#8 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 10:43 PM
 
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Originally Posted by animus_silvae View Post
I really have a hard time with the specific words....
Edited.
I can understand how those words would be bothersome after getting them thrown at you in a particular way by someone you care about.
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#9 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 10:47 PM
 
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My Rage issues were linked with my hyperthyroid, ...
I could 100% see this. Especially since thyroid functioning is so sensitive to hormone balances. Look at when you had problems:
As a young teenager--hormone levels all over the place.
While pregnant--hormone levels all over the place.
While in a very stressful relationship--hormone levels all over the place.
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#10 of 22 Old 03-28-2008, 10:53 PM
 
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First, I am so sorry you are having a rough time.

In my experience, pregnancy has always magnified problems that I already knew existed. I, too, suffer from anger issues. I also have issues with OCD and anxiety/depression. I now understand that these are compounded during pregnancy due to the hormones, added stress, morning sickness, lack of sleep, etc. I am in counseling, however, counseling alone is not enough for me. I also take 300 mg of Wellbutrin daily. Prior to pregnancy I was taking Effexor but my pregnancy is high risk and my ob was not comfortable with continuing with it.

I urge you to explore all of your treatment options including medication before things get even more out of control.

Please know that you are not the only who deals with these type of issues. Hugs to you.

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#11 of 22 Old 03-29-2008, 02:16 AM
 
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Good advice from everyone but I just wanted to chime in to say this could be completely temporary so you and DP may just need to sort out some coping mechanisms for the time being. That you had a similar incident when you were last pregnant suggests to me that this may be temporary and is not normal behaviour for you.

I'm a placid person who has never hit anyone in my life that I recall. DH and I have a ridiculously blissful marriage, we don't even ever fight, let alone have issues or anything to sort out. But during my 1st trimester I would get so filled with rage I'd be shaking, clenching my fists and telling him to get out of my way till I'd calmed down. Before I even knew I was pregnant we had one of the only big arguments in the entire 18 years we've known each other, which escalated to the point where I knew I was going to hit him (he was driving at the time) so I made him pull over so I could walk home as I couldn't bear to be around him for a moment longer. I walked 7 miles home in the rain and had to call in sick from work just because I couldn't control my temper. At work I'd fly into rages over various imagined slights and would have to absent myself from meetings etc to lock myself in the bathrooms to calm down, shaking like a leaf, out of my mind with anger.

So what did we do? We talked about it. We knew it was hormonal as I'm not usually like that unless I have PMS - this was like the worst PMS of my life only for 3 months rather than a day or two. So DH could understand that it wasn't him I was angry with, it wasn't anything I was angry with (although it felt like it at the time), it was that I simply had so many hormones coursing through my body that I couldn't cope. So, along with a lot of apologising and reassurance to DH that I loved and respected him as much as ever, we muddled through, DH doing his very best to remember that I wasn't doing this on purpose and that it was a temporary situation.

I've been on progestorone treatments before for a hormonal problem and have been warned by doctors not to go into work or be social when on treatment as extreme mood swings are well-documented side effect of high-level hormonal levels in women.

At 13 weeks, my rages completely dissipated and I'm back to my usual boring self. You are not doing this on purpose and DP needs to understand that and develop a little empathy for you. Sounds like you understand counselling but keep in mind that it's very unlikely to be a quick-fix of any description so unlikely to help you deal with this specific situation, although sounds like you've got a lot to work through so it's probably a good idea anyway - if you'd not been abused yourself, you'd probably be more accepting of this behaviour: I don't feel guilty over my rages (during which I was extremely vocally and psychologically abusive) as they were not normal behaviour for me and I did my best to deal with them, and feeling guilty is not going to help a thing. Try to feel better and talk to DP to figure out how best to deal with this together - it's up to both of you and should not be your burden alone.
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#12 of 22 Old 03-29-2008, 02:29 AM
 
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I never have experienced anger in my entire life like I have during pregnancy. Especially, for some odd reason, when I am pregnant with a boy. I just want you to know you are not alone.
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#13 of 22 Old 03-29-2008, 04:30 AM
 
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I've been experiencing this a bit in my pregnancy. I haven't hit anyone but I've hit things. I punched our trash can so hard a few weeks ago that there is now a fist-shaped dent in it and yesterday everything got so on top of me that I screamed at the top of my lungs and punched our bathroom toiletries organizer drawer, which smashed into pieces at the top. My hand was bleeding afterwards and I was literally shaking with rage. I had to practically slap myself to snap myself out of it and then cried in a heap on the floor for a good ten minutes. The hormones flooding through me right now (I'm 15 weeks) make me feel like I'm being held hostage by some force stronger than me sometimes. It's really, really hard to come to grips with feeling such anger at what is supposed to be such a happy and peaceful time, according to social expectations.

I think looking at your diet and finding ways to gain more energy and learn some coping mechanisms is your best bet. Counseling would not go amiss either. I would gladly get some counseling if I could even remotely afford it.

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#14 of 22 Old 03-29-2008, 11:05 AM
 
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This thread is so informative! I'm pregnant with my first (a boy) and have never been so emotional and angry. Normally I'm really easy going, my DP and I never really fought, I was generally aware of my feelings and could communicate them and act on them. Now I feel like they are getting the better of me and there have been times I have never felt so angry or strongly in my life. It's crazy what pregnancy does.
I've never had any thyroid issues or hormonal issues, just PMS. I'm wondering if I'm eating too much refined wheat/gluten or something. That's something I don't normally eat a lot of but I've been craving sandwiches so I can have pickles and chips with them . In the past I've gone gluten free and noticed positive changes, but I've fallen off the wagon.

Baby wearing Mamma to DS, dealing with all his allergies....and thriving w/another little bundle due in Early Feb
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#15 of 22 Old 03-29-2008, 04:44 PM
 
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I think that emotions are really flared up by hormones during pregnancy as we all know. I think if you have existing issues those can come up easier - I do loose my temper sometimes but never to that point but I have never had anger issues etc.. I think it is awesome that you are aware and are getting counseling. Good luck!
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#16 of 22 Old 03-29-2008, 07:44 PM
 
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With my first I was emotional, sensitive, and empathic. Those are all the things DD1 is.
With my second, I was stubborn, easily angered, quick to fight. Those are everything DD2 is!

I yelled at DH if he touched me too much and was extremely unforgiving. I even tried to start a fight with a girl in a parking lot, just because she looked at me wrong. I spent most of the pregnancy yelling at DD1 and was afraid DD2 would think I hated her because of it! I feel so very bad, but, I even hurt DD1 accidentally when I was so angry she wouldn't go to sleep on time and dropped her on her bed too hard and she bonked her head on the wall. That's when I realized there's something very wrong going on and felt exactly the way you described. I didn't have access to counseling then.

I NEVER fight and had actually never gotten angry before that, so all that behavior was completely not like me. It faded after DD2 was born, but now I CAN get angry (not violent anymore though) and sometimes still have to deal with that.

I'm sorry you're going through all this. It's not at all unusual, and you aren't a terrible person! Pregnancy really can make you act like you have the WORST PMS EVER! It's not your fault. I have a feeling that one of these days, pregnancy rage will come out and be respected like postpartum depression is. Others like us should know we aren't alone and we aren't monsters because of things we can't control!
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#17 of 22 Old 03-31-2008, 12:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by LoobyLoo View Post
Good advice from everyone but I just wanted to chime in to say this could be completely temporary so you and DP may just need to sort out some coping mechanisms for the time being. That you had a similar incident when you were last pregnant suggests to me that this may be temporary and is not normal behaviour for you...
I'd like to quote your entire post, because your response is the one that resonated the most with me. I have tried not to write off what happened as "hormonal", but the fact that the only other time in the last 10 years I have hit someone, was during pregnancy. I want to be really sure that I have not become an abuser, which is why I will continue to pursue councelling. But, honestly, when I look inside of myself, I know I am not a violent, angry or particularily troubled spirit. I have never suffered from any conditions too extreme while not pregnant (ie. anxiety/depression, OCD, anger) that would make me seek treatment. I am still scared of my anger getting out of control as I am just ending my first trimester, and really need to find some relaible strategies to manage myself.

Thank you so much for expressing yourself so clearly.

Syrinx, Soulmate to Pan, Mama to Zion (5), River (3), Silver (1) and expecting a baby Storm...
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#18 of 22 Old 03-31-2008, 12:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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With my first I was emotional, sensitive, and empathic. Those are all the things DD1 is.
With my second, I was stubborn, easily angered, quick to fight. Those are everything DD2 is!
I was thinking about this too, especially since I am pregnant with a Scorpio.

Syrinx, Soulmate to Pan, Mama to Zion (5), River (3), Silver (1) and expecting a baby Storm...
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#19 of 22 Old 03-31-2008, 12:48 AM
 
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You might consider a biochemical/physical thorough work-up as well. Sometimes hormones, blood sugar, other physical factors create these kinds of situations as well.
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#20 of 22 Old 03-31-2008, 01:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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You might consider a biochemical/physical thorough work-up as well. Sometimes hormones, blood sugar, other physical factors create these kinds of situations as well.
Absolutely.

Ironica also brought up diet, which I know is MAJOR with me. I am EXTREMELY sensitive to blood-sugar levels (and sugars) in my non-pregnant life. As well, I am undergoing testing for narcolepsy, which I believe has remained undiagnosed since childhood. The night that the fight had occurred, I had been driving for 10 hours and drifting in-and-out of sleep. I get very confused when entering and leaving sleep and often have problems separating dreams from my waking life. I have some tests coming up in April, so I should have more answers then. The main problem is, however, I cannot take the medication for narcolepsy while pregnant, so I hope there are other solutions available.

I also am making an appointment for a BodyTalk session, which I did during my last pregnancy. I found it really helped me work through issues I had about my first birth so hopefully I can unearth some of the root of the anger, if it is more than hormonal.

Thank you so much to everyone for your caring advice and support . I'll keep you updated.

Syrinx, Soulmate to Pan, Mama to Zion (5), River (3), Silver (1) and expecting a baby Storm...
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#21 of 22 Old 03-31-2008, 12:26 PM
 
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My midwife says that pregnancy is a time of spiritual, mental, and behavioral housecleaning. She also said that if you have unresolved issues from your past, they will and often do rear back up during pregnancy because of the hormones, etc.

You are not alone. Take the advice from the women in the PPs. Talk to your DH. Explain to him how you feel, and even let him read this thread, if you feel comfortable enough. The more he understands your state of mind, the better he can cope with and work with you on reducing your anger. Get some counceling, long-term. Talk to your doctor/midwife about your anger. See what they recommend. But don't let this go on - you and your family don't have to suffer.

I hope things turn out well for you. And remember, you are still a good person...

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#22 of 22 Old 10-07-2013, 07:33 PM
 
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I was wondering if someone else had a short fuse while being pregnant. I thought I was alone in this arena. Some of it is caused by hormones. Mine is not violent though. You may need to get some help with it. I suggest talking to your baby doctor. Tell your doctor that you are having anger issues & they are not easily controlled. It is o.k. You are not going crazy. It is something that some pregnant women go through. You are not alone. I also have mood swings. I cry & have mild depression. I am working through it. My first pregnancy was really bad. Because I had depression really bad. But my ex husband was a part of my stress. He was abusive. I was married to him for 17 yrs. This is my second pregnancy. I am excited about it. I just want to remind you are not alone in this. 

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