PPD at 13 months? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 12:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think I am struggling with post partum depression. I've had some harder days and weeks over the last year (youngest baby was born in November 2008), but I think I really need help now. My marriage is falling apart. I'm struggling with intense anxiety about the house and the children. I'm exhausted. It's getting harder to face the daily stuff.

DH wants to do marriage counseling. I almost just want to leave him, because trying to work through things seems too hard. Everything seems too hard.

I guess I'm wondering if I've let things get bad enough I should start with meds...
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#2 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 02:50 AM
 
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I'm so sorry you're dealing with such anxiety and stress. I certainly don't have all the answers but I can say that I have found therapy (just talking through things with an objective and supportive counselor) to be very helpful. It may not be necessary to go to meds if you can find a good outlet or sometimes short-term med can be really helpful to get you through a rough patch.
I wish you and your family the best.
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#3 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 12:30 PM
 
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PPD can start any time in the first year and beyond. I would start by going to www.postpartum.net and seeing if there are any therapists/groups in your area. Then I would see what your insurance will cover. I would talk to your OB or midwife and see what they say. Sadly, a lot of OB's and midwives are not educated enough about PPD to know that you could be suffering from it at this stage. Try to find a therapist familiar with PPD.

Meds are a great thing because they can help you see things differently, fairly quickly. They are wonderful when needed. The best way I can describe it is if you are in a dark room, you can't find your way around and you wouldn't make the best choices because you wouldn't be able to see things clearly. Meds turn on the light. You can look around, evaluate, and do what you have to do to navigate your life and do things to help yourself get better.

Hopefully, this helps.

Mom to two beautiful boys, now in school to be a therapist and help other women with PPD.  
 

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#4 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 03:01 PM
 
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It could be ppd. It is definitely depression, though, of some sort. I would imagine that you might not treat it differently whichever kind of depression it is. I have been in that place, where I didn't like the idea of meds but I was just drowning and needed something to pull me out. I was on meds for about 9 months, and after I stopped I was fine until I got pregnant again.

If your dh is willing to help you with a non-med regimen, you could probably do that instead. When I'm depressed, I can't really take charge of a treatment more complicated than taking one pill a day. BUT if he's willing to help you with it, you probably could do it. Read the Mood Cure.

About your marriage--I encourage you to try to work it out. Does your dh understand that you are not acting like yourself because you are depressed? I think it is really common among the women on this forum to dislike their husbands when they are depressed. It is also really common for husbands to be really frustrated and sometimes intensely angry about how their depressed wives are behaving. And your dh actually wants to work it out! If you can find some solutions for the depression, it most likely won't seem so hard to work on your marriage and will probably seem more worthwhile to you. It is amazing how much your perspective changes when you come out of that haze....

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#5 of 8 Old 12-31-2009, 02:41 AM
 
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I'm having similar difficulties with our marriage right now, I rotate between not wanting to work on it and being frustrated with the lack of work DH is putting into it when I feel like I'm working so hard.

From my own perspective, it seems like in the midst of depression is a very bad time to make lifelong decisions, my OB and psychiatrist were suggesting I get a tubal when I had my c-section, but I was very firm in saying no and when asked why, I just said that I didn't think making a decision like that was appropriate when I was so depressed.

I've not been able to think anything like so clearly about my marriage, but I definitely see it as a bad time to make any decisions and being patient about that is very hard.

I would definitely suggest getting treatment for your own depression first and if you're not ready for marriage counselling now, then maybe after some treatment for you, you will be.

Anne, Christian mummy to Nathanael 05/28/03, Ada 06/10/05, Grace 05/24/09
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#6 of 8 Old 01-01-2010, 09:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think I'm going to make an appointment with my midwives when they open on Monday after the holiday weekend.

This has been going on for a long time. My last pregnancy was extremely difficult. I spent five months on bed rest and by the end of that time, I was very depressed. At first after our son was born, I thought things were better. I think I was in some sense. He was in the NICU for a month and during that time, I did everything I could to help him. Helping him kept me going.

It wasn't until he was home from the hospital that things got more difficult for me. January and February last year, when our son was newly home from the hospital, were very dark. I don't really remember most of that time. I think I was very numb. In the spring, I began exercising more and really recovering from the pregnancy. I knew I was at least "at risk" for depression, so I was doing everything I could to take care of myself. Although I had some hard days, I generally felt pretty good through July.

Near the end of July, we had a situation in our church that has been incredibly painful. I don't want to get into the details of what happened, but the end result was that we were isolated, hurt, confused. We thought the situation would be resolved quickly, but six months later it is still a mess.

I guess I felt like I was handling things well enough up to that point, but since then the bad days our outnumbering the good. I'm just soooo tired of the intrusive thoughts. Although I've never done anything to hurt myself or the kids, I'm so tired of fighting thoughts about this.

Two weeks ago our baby's hand was crushed in a door. He nearly lost a finger. He was in the hospital, had surgery, was in a cast for 10 days and now he's recovering. His finger will never be the same. They said it will take at least 18 months to look more normal. This has sort of pushed me over the edge. Somehow this has brought back everything from last year. All the fear and anxiety of having a baby in the hospital, the pain of watching a 3 pound baby struggle to breathe.

When I think about it that way, I guess it makes sense why this is so hard right now. The finger thing has brought back everything that was so hard about last year and I feel like maybe I'm dealing with many of that mess of emotions for the first time.

I am honestly really scared of having a "diagnoses" of PPD. Because my pregnancies are crazy, we should not get pregnant again. But it's been so hard to make the decision to do something permanent for birth control. We really want to adopt, but I am really, really afraid I won't be able to adopt if I've had PPD.

I think our marriage is going to be okay. I hope my husband can stick with me through this. I've said some terrible things to him, but when I'm in my right mind, I don't mean what I've said...I apologize but I think he's pretty confused.

And I worry about the impact of all of this on the children...
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#7 of 8 Old 01-04-2010, 02:32 AM
 
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I'm glad you feel more confident about your marriage.

As for adoption, I'd try not to worry about that, one way of looking at it is that if you don't treat your depression, you may not improve your marriage, you may not even get to taking the first steps towards adoption and if you did you could find yourself failing for reaons due to your depression, even if they can't be labelled as that.

On the other hand, treat your depression, recover from it, possibly find you need to continue with maintenance treatment and whilst sadly that official diagnosis might exclude you from adopting from some countries (I think China has a strict no mental illness policy), it probably won't be an automatic exclusion in other cases, just a flag for more detailed investigation.

Good Luck.

Anne, Christian mummy to Nathanael 05/28/03, Ada 06/10/05, Grace 05/24/09
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#8 of 8 Old 01-04-2010, 04:49 PM
 
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I believe whawt I've read is that PPD can happen up to a year post-partum, some have said 2 years post-partum. It sounds like you have stressors which have triggered your episode. The Anxiety Workbook can give a great explanation of the brain and stress, but in a nutshell, the more the brain is exposed to stress, the more easily those neuropathways find themselves in times of stress, and I'll be darned if I could find the link online, but I've read that women who have experienced PPD do have more problems handling stress down the road. I personally am in the middle of a breakout, relapse, whatever you want to call it....and I have a history of sustained stress (stemming from puberty) and I'm just at risk for depression and anxiety...hence the meds I've been on since 1999. It can happen after weaning, after your cycles start up for the first time post-partum as well. Just relating my experience, I hope I haven't scared you in any way.
A great book that could help you is This Isn't What I Expected-Overcoming POstpartum Depression from Karen Kleiman and valerie Raskin.

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