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Feeling depressed while pregnant

Discussion in 'Pregnancy' started by betty73, Jan 16, 2012.

  1. It's taken me a long time to admit it but I think my depression is back.
    When I found out I was pregnant I stopped taking my antidepressants 'cold turkey' as I didn't know if they were safe or not. After coming off them I started suffering from low moods from time to time but just blamed the pregnancy hormones. Over Christmas I noticed that I was feeling lower than usual and was getting extremely emotional over everything but again I blamed hormones and didn't twig that it could be the old depression coming back.
    We went back to school last week after the holidays and I struggled - the stupidly long working days have alreayd taken their toll (private school where I have to work until 6pm two days a week, until 7pm one day and I have to work Saturdays until 1pm), I found that I was crying in the car on the way to work - not because I had to work but because I was worrying about things irrationally 'what if I crash and then my mobile doesn't work and then some nutter comes along and tries to kill me and I can't call for help' etc etc - crazy I know. I was crying at my desk during my free periods, just unable to stop worrying about my baby - 'what if something goes wrong? what if she dies? what if I go into labour early?'
    I feel like a complete failure for feeling this way. Being pregnant is the most amazing thing and anything to do with my baby makes me so happy - it's the rest of the world that makes me scared and sad. I can't get away from this total fear that I don't deserve to be happy and that something will go wrong with my baby because the cosmos will decide that i'm not worthy. Everyone says that pregnancy is supposed to be a happy time and so I feel even more like a failure for feeling down. I am just so scared of everything.
    I've been battling into work this past week as my HT told me back in October that if I had any more time off ill that he wouldn't pay me (private school -they can do what they like, especially since I only started there in September - I was very very ill for 2 weeks that first term and was signed off) so I have been scared to have any time off as I can't afford not to be paid. My work haven't done a risk assessment for me or anything and no one up high has asked about my pregnancy so I haven't been in a position to raise any issues with them. I am still expected to work my normal hours and duties - including weekend duties (Sat afternoons and all day Sunday 3 times a term).
    I've got a doctors appointment for this evening but I couldn't get in to see my normal Dr so I don't know what they will say or do. I can't afford to be signed off work but I also can't function the way that I am right now - I know it's not good for the baby.
    Not sure why i've posted all this, I think I just needed to vent. It would be nice to hear from anyone else that has suffered while pregnant and come out the other side.
     
  2. It's taken me a long time to admit it but I think my depression is back.
    When I found out I was pregnant I stopped taking my antidepressants 'cold turkey' as I didn't know if they were safe or not. After coming off them I started suffering from low moods from time to time but just blamed the pregnancy hormones. Over Christmas I noticed that I was feeling lower than usual and was getting extremely emotional over everything but again I blamed hormones and didn't twig that it could be the old depression coming back.
    We went back to school last week after the holidays and I struggled - the stupidly long working days have alreayd taken their toll (private school where I have to work until 6pm two days a week, until 7pm one day and I have to work Saturdays until 1pm), I found that I was crying in the car on the way to work - not because I had to work but because I was worrying about things irrationally 'what if I crash and then my mobile doesn't work and then some nutter comes along and tries to kill me and I can't call for help' etc etc - crazy I know. I was crying at my desk during my free periods, just unable to stop worrying about my baby - 'what if something goes wrong? what if she dies? what if I go into labour early?'
    I feel like a complete failure for feeling this way. Being pregnant is the most amazing thing and anything to do with my baby makes me so happy - it's the rest of the world that makes me scared and sad. I can't get away from this total fear that I don't deserve to be happy and that something will go wrong with my baby because the cosmos will decide that i'm not worthy. Everyone says that pregnancy is supposed to be a happy time and so I feel even more like a failure for feeling down. I am just so scared of everything.
    I've been battling into work this past week as my HT told me back in October that if I had any more time off ill that he wouldn't pay me (private school -they can do what they like, especially since I only started there in September - I was very very ill for 2 weeks that first term and was signed off) so I have been scared to have any time off as I can't afford not to be paid. My work haven't done a risk assessment for me or anything and no one up high has asked about my pregnancy so I haven't been in a position to raise any issues with them. I am still expected to work my normal hours and duties - including weekend duties (Sat afternoons and all day Sunday 3 times a term).
    I've got a doctors appointment for this evening but I couldn't get in to see my normal Dr so I don't know what they will say or do. I can't afford to be signed off work but I also can't function the way that I am right now - I know it's not good for the baby.
    Not sure why i've posted all this, I think I just needed to vent. It would be nice to hear from anyone else that has suffered while pregnant and come out the other side.
     
  3. Hi - I'm not an expert and have no experience of proper depression, but I'm sure there are anti-depressants which are safe for pregnant women (I've seen people talking about it on other fora)
    Pregnancy can kick off all sorts of emotions and feelings - for the first trimester I felt really low. But you know your body - you recognise the warning signs that all is not well. Ask your GP about options for treating your depression. Pregnancy lasts a loooong time - you don't want to spend it feeling emotionally and mentally rotten. Not good for you, not good for baby.
     
  4. I too have not got experience of serious depression but wanted to say that it is actually a very normal time to struggle. Pregnancy is a wonderful thing but it is also hard, hormonal, exhausting, nervewracking, unpredictable ... the list goes on! And becoming a parent is a privilege and an amazing thing, but it is also hard and life changing and full of responsibilities and anxieties and concerns.
    So it is rubbish feeling so worried and down (and you sound like you need proper help and support - medication perhaps, yes, but also other ways including from your school - private or not they have legal obligations towards you) ... but you really shouldn't feel bad or beat yourself up that you are feeling this way. Feeling very low doesn't somehow make you ungrateful for your pregnancy or not aware of how lucky you are to be pregnant or anything like that.
     
  5. i had ante-natal depression. it's fairly common - not as much as post-natal but it is there. there are antidepressants you can take in pregnancy and yes, there are some risks to the baby but there are also risks to the baby being carried by a depressed mother. you have to weigh them up. good luck x
     
  6. Thank you for your replies, it means a lot that people have offered comfort.
    I saw my GP to night who was completely rubbish and wouldn't help, he said he can't do anything without my consultants permission while last week it was my consultant that told me to go see my GP for help.
    I told him everything that I was feeling yet he didn't seem to sympathise at all. He's not my usual GP as my usual one didn't have any appointments today so I might try see my usual one tomorrow to see if she is more help.
    I HATE feeling so useless, i've spent the whole day crying and feeling terrible and worrying about my exam classes too which doesn't help.
    Spiderkin - I hope you don't mind me asking but were you on antidepressants?
     
  7. no, i saw a specialist maternity counsellor and had a support plan put in place to help me during the pregnancy. however i am on them now for PND and if i fall pregnant again whilst on the antidepressants i would continue to take them during my pregnancy after my last experience.
     
  8. I'd definitely get an appointment with your usual doctor the one you saw sounds useless. Or talk to your midwife if she is ok? The midwives now round here seem to actively look for signs of and where I dont remember that from my first. I think that one of the difficulties of antenatal/ postnatal depression is that it is a time that should be happy. I had mild/ moderate pnd with my first daughter and one of the things that really upset me was my inability to be happy despite having everything anyone could possibly want. But the fact is these things happen pretty frequently and you have to accept that you are feeling how you are and try not to feel guilty.
     
  9. I've booked another appointment for tonight with my usual doctor. I'm hoping she will write a note asking for reduced duties for me as my extremely long working hours aren't helping (private school with 3 evening duties a week plus working Saturday mornings) - I doubt my work will agree but its worth a try. My work are really laying on the pressure about me being off work, even though I am sending in detailed lesson plans (like the kind you do for Ofsted!)
    I'm just fed up with feeling like a nutter and being made to feel like a failure for not working this week.
     
  10. Betty, sent you a pm yesterday. when do you start amternity leave?
     
  11. Glitterkid - just replied to you! Sorry I didn't see the PM!
    Saw my GP this evening who has signed me off work for a week. Dr wanted to sign me off for 3 weeks but my work would kill me if I was off that long - I suspect they will try to fire me for so much illness already since I only started there in Sept. I told work what the diagnosis is and they literally responded with a single sentance which doens't help me feel any better. I feel like i'm in trouble for being ill.
    GP diagnosed depression and anxiety and was really good to talk to. She is referring me to a specialist who deals with depression in pregnancy so that they can then discuss treatment options with me.
    I'm working right up until a week before the baby is due because I can't afford not to as i'm not eligable for SMP as i haven't worked long enough at my school. [​IMG]
     
  12. fairy78

    fairy78 New commenter

    Hi everyone. So sorry to hear you are having a rotten time of it, Betty73 and anyone else reading. I've had depression in the past, and thought it may have come back. Been constantly poorly since a month into my pregnancy - not just morning sickness, but chest infections and asthma flare-ups. Having wanted a baby for so long, and overjoyed to be expecting almost immediately after trying, I then felt so ill for so long, which made me utterly miserable. I felt guilty at being so unhappy when I had what I wanted, something that many people struggle for, and having seen friends suffer miscarriages. I dragged myself into work, convinced that I was "just pregnant", not ill, and should not make any allowances. I worked the same long hours, and continued to be ill, one infection after another, and only took a couple of days off when the morning sickness on top of the bad chest became too much. Anyway, it all came to a head when I was taken into hospital with stroke-like symptoms the week before half term. I suddenly went blind in one eye, had pins and needles, was incoherent and confused, and after a clear MRI, it was put down to a stress-related migraine. Exhausted, I was signed off for two weeks and it's taken this time to realise that I have been completely unreasonable with myself. I have pushed myself too far, despite the warning signs. I felt incredibly guilty in the nasty banging MRI scanner, that I was traumatising my baby, all because of working too hard. In effect, I was putting other peoples' children in front of my own. So what I would say to you, Betty73 and anyone else suffering with stress or depression, diagnosed or not, is to put yourself first. It is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against you, either on the basis of stress or pregnancy, and any normal person would feel sympathetic. You're going to feel better a lot quicker if you take time off. My doctor was lovely, and put down a chest infection rather than exhaustion, as there were elements of both. I also know of people who have taken anti-depressants during pregnancy - there are a number of safe ones. Safefetus.com is a great website the hospital use to check the safety of drugs by the way. I know it's not antidepressants, but I've had to take large doses of oral and inhaled steroids, plus antibiotics, regular painkillers and anti-emetics and baby seems blissfully unaware. At the 20 week scan she wasn't even small, although they are going to check again at 28 weeks. My midwife keeps on saying that baby is a parasite, taking what it needs, at times to our detriment. Although I'm not 100%, having had 2 weeks off, plus half term, I think I am probably as well as I'm going to be. So I'm back to work next week, feeling less miserable as I'm not so tired and unwell. Please look after yourself x
     
  13. Sorry you are having a rough time. The guilt you mention was a big part of the PND I had after my first baby. I think whatever someone has or doesnt have is actually irrelevant to depression. Being lucky enough to be having a baby does not mean that you will be amazingly happy every single day, the problems that you face are different but still real. The fact is right now that you are not well and you need to accept that and be kind to yourself rather than beat yourself up over it.
     
  14. fairy78

    fairy78 New commenter

    I agree! It's good to have had the time and space to sort that out. Here's to happy and healthy pregnancies from now on!
     

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