Postpartum Depression

The Hush-Hush Syndrome: Post-Partum Anxiety/OCD Intrusive thoughts (quite long)

I've been away from this site for quite sometime, but was frequent flyer back in 2010, when I was expecting my first baby. Hannah was born on October 21, 2010, and has been a pure joy since that day. So why am I here? Well...first of all, I thought I might be able to offer some support to those of you who are suffering through depression during a time that should be a joyous one...trust me, I know what it feels like; however, I am also looking for some support/reassurance from others that what I experieneced at Hannah's birth, and what rears it's ugly head now and again, isn't just happening to me.

I should start by telling you all that I have always been an anxious person. I worry about lots of things that are out of my control, which surprises some, because I am a professional, I am generally put together, and appear to be fairly go with the flow. Before I had Hannah it was always about my health and well being. I am a self-proclaimed hypochrondriac, no doubt about it; however, since I've had Hannah, all of my fears of getting sick or something bad happening in my life have shifted to worrying about the well being of my daughter.

I miscarried shortly before becoming pregnant with Hannah, and thus, was pretty worried throughout my pregnancy. I constantly worried that I was going to miscarry again, that I was going to go into premature labor, that I was going to deliver stillborn...you name it, I worried about it in one way or another. My thoughts always centered around, and still do, keeping Hannah safe, which why it seemed so strange when intrusive thoughts started to invade my mind like an unstoppable enemy force.

I remember the first time I had a terrible thought. I shudder just thinking about it. I was sitting in my hospital bed, and my mom was rocking Hannah in her arms next to me. I had this horrible vision of  mother purposely dropping my baby to the floor. It was like an alarm sounded inside of me, but I was quickly able to shrug it off. When my husband and I brought her home, however, the thoughts started coming back...what if she drowned in the bathtub? What if she flipped to her stomach at night or during a nap and smothered herself. Horrific, unimagineable images that still haunt me.

The scariest part was that the thoughts of accidentally hurting her transformed into worries of intentionally hurting her. I was afraid to be alone with the baby because I constantly had these "What if" scenarios that would play out in my mind, particularly relating to the bath tub. I knew that what I was feeling wasn't right, so immediately sought help from my OBGYN. I didn't tell him the extent of the anxiety that I was feeling (I should have), but I did tell him that I recognized that I was under anxiety that was leading to depression. He prescribed me a low dose of Zoloft, which was very effective, and I was able to get myself back to reality and relaize how irrational my fears were.

Because I began feeling so much better, I stupidly and without thinking, stopped my medication on my own when Hannah was about 6 months old. I continued to feel fine for the next few months, and then summer hit. Over fourth of July weekend, we went out to spend the weekend at my parents' house on the Finger Lakes in CNY. I remember being very wary when I when I saw the expanse of the water. Again, it was as if an alarm was sounding in my head. What if I dropped Hannah while walking down the dock and couldn't save her? The danger of the water scared me to no end. Again, out of nowhere, thoughts of accidental harm morphed into, "What If I...?" I tossed and turned at night, I felt like a complete monster, I began comapring myself to Andrea Yates, Casey Anthony, and other women like them...it turned into a total nightmare. While most people experience intrusive thoughts now and again, it was as if mine just wouldn't let go. It was like my worst fears in movie version were playing over and over again in my mind.

There were two times in these horrendous weeks of fear that will haunt me forever. I was alone with my mom and Hannah, spending an extra night at the lake house. My husband and dad had to return home for work (I am a teacher, so was off for the summer). I had been feeling the anxiety and fear rising within me all day long, but tried to suppress and ignore it. It was bathtime, and I was sitting by the tub watching Hannah happily splash around and play with her bath toys. The thought just popped into my head out of nowhere. She was so small, vulernable, and weak against my adult strength, it would be so easy to just push her under the water. I immediately began to panic, unplugged the drain, yanked Hannah out of the tub and screamed for my mom to help me. It was only then that I told her what I was going through. I have not shared this with anyone accept my close family and doctor, so this is a big moment.

As I have already said, I am hoping that my story will help give reassurance to others experiencing this that they are not alone. For the reaminder of that week, Hannah and I stayed with my mom, and I searched for support groups to help me get through. When I called the birth center at hospital where Hannah was born, I explained what I was feeling only to be met with the opinion of a misinformed staff member, who told me that I was experiencing post-partum psychosis...a mental illness that is completely separate from post-partum anxiety and ocd. I couldn't believe that this woman was so unaware and so uneducated about the various forms of depression that women face after giving birth. As you can imagine, this only heightened my anxiety and made things worse. I thought, "Geez, maybe I am crazy...Maybe Hannah really is in danger."

The second time that my anxiety reached a peak was during a weekend in the Adirondacks at my in-laws' summer cabin a few weeks later. I had tried everything to ease my anxiety that morning. I went kayaking, swam in the cool and calming lake, took my dogs for a fast paced walk...but nothing worked. I felt like I was on the verge of a panic attack all morning, and there was nothing I could do to stop it.

It was time to get Hannah dressed, and my husband left the room for no more than 10 seconds to grab a clean diaper. Here was my precious, beautiful baby, crawling toward me with a huge smile. I began to shake again thinking of my sheer physical power over her. She was so dependent and vulnerable," I could never act out on the thought, right?"...is what I was thinking. With a trembling hand, I tested myself. I actually put my hand on my daughter's head to see if I had it in me to push it into the pillows. I know I sound like a monster. It's totally irrational, and of course, I couldn't do it. Feeling like a criminal and absolutely terrified, I immediately told my MIL and husband what had happened and insisted that I needed to go to the emergency room bc my anxiety had just taken over, and I was worried for the safety of my child.

Reluctantly, my husband drove me the nearest hospital. I say reluctantly bc he was worried about what would happen when I told the ER doctors what happened. Would Hannah be taken away? Would I have to be admitted to a mental hospital? Would I lose my job as a teacher? The truth is, I didn't care. All I could focus on was A. Making sure my daughter was safe, and B. Getting the help I needed. If I had to be away from my baby for a bit in order to ensure these things, I was willing.

Long story short, I was able to speak with a psychiatrist, who assured me that I was not psychotic, I was not going to hurt my child, and that I just had acute anxiety paired with OCD that was making these irrational and horrible intrusive thoughts play over and over again in my head. When you can't fight the thoughts off, they become real to the person experiencing them. They terrorize mothers into believeing that because they have thought, they must want to do these things, when in fact it is just the opposite. He described it as a mother's natural instinct to protect her child gone haywire. He explained that mothers who hurt their children are not frightened by their thoughts, see their children as some kind of inconvenience in their lives, and/or are delusional. I left feeling much better. He got me on the right meds and referred me to a great therapist and psychiatrist, both of whom I still see today.

I was able to conquer my anxiety with therapy, medicine, and good excercise. I also reached a point where I could fully enjoy my baby, but it really did take time and patience. I wanted to feel better immediately. I wish I had known how common this is among new moms, however. I felt very alone, and truly began to question who I was a person deep down. I've never been violent. I love animals and children, am empathetic, and love my family and friends to no end. I would have never ever imagined that this could happen to me. I learned that the thoughts were not there because I wanted them to happen or even worse, that there were going to happen...but it took time.

I've been great for many months now, with only the occassional intrusive thought that I can shake off pretty easily. The last few days, though, have been a bit tougher.I've actually noticed recently that my anxiety levels rise a bit when I am about to get my period. I wondered first if anyone can relate to my experiences or can attest to the fact that sometimes the anxiety waxes and wanes?

This was not an easy story to share, but I know from reading and speaking to people that it is more common than I ever thought...most women just feel too ashamed to talk about it. I thought this might open up a safe discussion forum for women who are experiencing anxiety/OCD to let their feelings out. I remember when I was in the throes of everything, it really helped to hear from other moms who experienced the same things that I was experiencing. It still does, actually :)

 Best wishes to everyone who is experiencing depression of any kind. It can and does get better!

 

PS: I found www.postpartumprogress.org extremely helpful. Also, the book Dropping the Baby and other Scary Thoughts, by Karen Kleiman is wonderful!

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Re: The Hush-Hush Syndrome: Post-Partum Anxiety/OCD Intrusive thoughts (quite long)

  • Wow.  Thank you for posting this, I could have written something very similar 5 years ago.  Zoloft, exercise and a therapist made all the difference.  Part of what made it so difficult was that I was far too ashamed to share it with anyone.  To this day the only one who knows how bad it really was my therapist.  I did go to one meeting for a support group but for whatever reason that I can't remember now I didn't go back.  Again, thank you for posting.  I just kind of wandered on to this board tonight and I am so glad I did.
    Trying to conceive #2 since Oct. 2008 BFP 6/14/11, 7/5/11 - Gestational Sac measured 7 weeks 6 days, Baby measured 5 weeks 6 days, No Heartbeat, 7/11/11 - Missed Miscarriage confirmed, 7/18/11 - D&C
  • Thanks for sharing your story. I was diagnosed with PPA/OCD at 15 months pp. I thought I was relatively normal with my worry, but I was pretty obsessed with knowing EVERYTHING. I would read on websites for hours, so that I could say I know how much he should eat, sleep, all of the possible sleep training techniques. Each week i was obsessed with something else. Even now, after therapy and meds I have to control this as I can easily become obsessed with anything, even PPA. I also worried constantly about sleep mostly and how awful it would be if/when he woke up if he didn't get enough sleep.

    Continue your treatment! While my little pumpkin has changed my life in so many positive ways, I just think I've been forever changed to be on edge more, so I know for me, I will always have to work through this.  

    GL and congrats on seeking help. 

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  • thank you soooo much for sharing
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  • i cant even tell you how much your story resonates with me. I thank you for sharing because i do feel like this isnt something people want to talk about it is so hush hush.

    i have intrusive thoughts. i luckily have an appt with a therapist next wed (Iv been waiting 9 wks for the appt)

    i have an older ds he was 11 when my twins were born and i have always been a very anxious person in general (I have GAD, SAD, and Social anxiety so im baiscally a nervous wreck and have bene all my life) anyway after the girls were born, i had the absolute worst  time mentally because when i would be obsessing about or having intrusive thoughts about my ds having something bad happening to him, i was always comforted by the knowledge that i could just kill myself if something bad happened to him so i wouldnt have to live with the pain (yeah thats normal huh) but then when the girls were born i knew that i couldnt kill myself if something happened to one of them because the others needed me, so that made me completely out of control (in my head) because i was deathly afraid of bad things happening to my kids.

    i have been on low dose zoloft (50 mg) but it doesnt seem to help, after i started taking it i started thinking my kids and family would be better off without me since i sucked so bad at life etc, so that scard me and i lowerd my own does to 25 mg but i still felt so bad inside and was so afraid to tell my dh because i didnt want anyone to know how awful i had been feeling.

    after the new year i finally told my dh how i ha been feeling, so depressed i dont even want to get out of bed but i know my kids need me so i have to and every single moment of the day puting on a happy face was slowly killing me

    i had my annual at my obgyn in january and they told me i had ppd and ppa and to get to a therapist asap and to up my dose back to 50 mg. i also take klonopin each morning because i am jus tso anxouis about every single thing it is so damn draining

     again, thanks for your story, you are so brave for writing that and i hope others can read it and be inspired to seek help/not feel ashamed

    good luck, your daughter is lucky to have such a strong mom to get though what you are getting through and to be strong enough to seek help, God bless (please dont be offended by the blesing if you arent religious)

    A

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  • Thank you for posting. I can't believe how uninformed doctors, nurses, and even therapists can be about this disorder. My obgyn and the first therapist I saw tried to tell me I was suffering from PP depression when it was actually OCD.

    It's such a scary disorder and although I am doing much better now than I was, I often find myself asking why me? It's hard to accept the fact that it's a disorder..not who you are. It is hush hush..that's probably why so many healthcare providers are misinformed. Thank you for sharing your story!

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  • IM SO HAPPY that i found this posts , i felt the same way and im feeling it now. i've suffered with postpartum depression in the past with my son and right away i went to my obgyn for help. they put me on wellbutrin but i was scared to take it because i was breastfeeding so i went back and they put me on Zoloft , i was also so thankful for my family , husband , and god they helped me through it alot to. it took awhile for me to feel better , but i did and the thoughts went away and i actually felt that i loved my son. even though i knew i loved him , i felt so lost at that time. then i got pregnant recently and i had a misscarraige in December and the month after that happened i had my period and i started to bleed blood clots , which scared me so much i thought i was dyeing. when i first found out i was pregnant again i did not want to have another baby , i felt that it would take my sons place and that scared me. when i actually started to feel good about it that's when i misscarried . i quit taking my zoloft with my recent pregnancy and about a couple weeks ago i started feeling awful. i started having bad thoughts again like of harming my child , and because of this i started taking my Zoloft everyday , but i still felt panicky and had anxiety real bad. so i finally made a doctors appt. cause i hated feeling like this i couldn't take it anymore i couldnt eat or sleep , so the doctor put me on seraquil. but that just made me sleep , it didnt help with the panicking at all , i felt anxiety all day long , so all i do is sit on the computer and try to find something that will help. i finally called my friend who is a pharmacist and told him what they put me on and i was still feeling panicky all day. he said not to take that and go back to the doctor and ask for xanax to help calm me down. i just really need some perspective from other people to know that im gonna get through this , and what also helped them. 


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  • Thank you so much for posting this!  I have done a lot of research on this as someone who has clinical depression and is planning to start TTC soon.  There is surprisingly little out there about pregnancy and depression!  I started a blog, for my own well being and to reach out to anyone else who is going through the same thing.  Since I just started it, I have no followers :-p  So if anyone is interested or knows others who might be, please share:

    http://myyearofbeginnings.blogspot.com/

     

    Love and strength to all of you amazing ladies!!! 

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  • You have no idea how alike our stories are! It's so nice to know that we are not alone in this. I am afraid to jinks myself, but I am almost ready to say that I've survived as well! Your post is a wonderful example of how PPD/OCD can be survived!

     Love & Light

  • I read your story and applaud you. You are absolutely right...our stories are SO alike. It's amazing, because over the summer I felt like I was the only mother to ever have gone through such hell...being tormented by such horrendous thoughts. Little did I know that you were out there. I wish I had.
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  • I couldn't agree more about knowing others suffered too. I have decided to be completely open about what I went through so that maybe someone dealingw ith it down the road can find comfort in knowing that it doesn't last forever and that it can be overcome.

     I'm still on zoloft and will start weaning off in April... but I'm so terrified that I'll go back to that dark place.

  • Thank you so much for sharing! I so admire your bravery and strength. As a fellow OCD sufferer (I experienced much the same type of intrusive thoughts during the post partum period), I think it's SO important that we talk about these things out in the open.

    I am so sorry for your experience, too, with that misinformed healthcare worker. Stuff like that makes it so much harder for women to access the help they need without being afraid.

     

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  • Oh, I am so glad I found your entry! My Muffin Man is 2 weeks old today, and I have a very similar story to yours. I have anxiety/depression, and I actually started seeing a therapist in my 7th month of pregnancy because I wanted to make sure that I had those problems, if not under control, at least in the process of being addressed before my son arrived.
    I started having these awful, horrible thoughts of things happening to him while we were still in the hospital. I thought that they were just normal, new mom worries and that they would abate as I became more comfortable with him. However, I have noticed that I have to stifle terrifying thoughts of him getting dropped, something getting dropped on him and either his father or myself inadvertantly hurting him because we aren't paying close enough attention to what we're doing. He is so small and vulnerable... it breaks my heart to think of anything happening to him, but these thoughts just seem to muscle their way into the forefront of my consciousness.
    I was trying to decide whether or not to schedule an appointment with my therapist regarding this. I was hesitant because, like you, I was afraid that I am just crazy and my baby would be taken away from me if I said anything. After reading your story, I have decided to talk to my therapist and for us to decide how to best deal with this situation.
    I want my son to have the best life I can give him; if I can't enjoy his development and growth because of my obsessive anxiety, I will not be giving him my all.

    Thank you sooooo much for sharing this experience! It took alot of courage and compassion to share something so personal, and I really cannot tell you how much your story has helped ease my mind. 

  • I can relate. My anxieties started after I was robbed at gunpoint when I was 21. I was diagnosed with PTSD about a year later after I began to have reoccurring nightmares and slowly slumped into a depression. I didn't know what that was at the time but looking back I can definitely see it. It's something that has popped up from time to time and really lessened over the years. My worries were still a little extreme from time to time but manageable. Lately, when I am stressed my anxiety level rises and that is when the intrusive thoughts started for me. They seem to have increased since I've had my LO because I do worry about something happening to him or my husband. So now I am trying to manage my stress level by cutting out caffeine, exercise and meditating. I'm at the point that I may go the my primary care doctor to see if there is something that I can do get through this because it is taking its toll. I think you ladies are very brave for sharing your stories and I very much appreciate your honesty. I would love to live worry free and this is my goal. And it is comforting to know that I am not alone in this and there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Thanks
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  • I want to say a huge thank you for posting your experience on here and for helping me realise I'm not alone. About a week after having my beautiful baby girl back in February 2011 I started to have horrible intrusive thoughts about harming her in some way. What if I did this. What if I did that. To cut a long story short, I sought help immediately and was lucky enough to be referred to an amazing team who worked with me from then right through to recently to get me better & help me understand that I was suffering from post natal (as we call it here in the uk) OCD and severe anxiety. Before I go on, if you're reading this and this and thinking 'two years?!! I can't wait 2 years to get better!!' It didn't take that long. I reckon a few months to get back into the rhythm of things and after that it was keeping my meds in check, having CBT and I did get bet better. 

     

    However, after months of reducing my meds I finally came off them about 5 weeks ago as we want to try for another baby.  Everything was going great but then 3 days ago - Xmas, great! - I felt that familiar anxiety creeping in and I just crashed. The intrusive thoughts are back, I am obsessing over the fear that I want to hurt my little girl. I'm thinking them so I must want to, right? I put my hand over her mouth to see if I could do it and of course I immediately pulled away. But that has scared the hell out of me. I'm back on meds and I know I'm doing everything right and I will get better again. But right now, here in the middle of it, I'm terrified. I think I may be too late on this post as it was posted a while ago, but if anyone has any words of support I old really do with them. Thank you xxx 

  • I want to say a huge thank you for posting your experience on here and for helping me realise I'm not alone. About a week after having my beautiful baby girl back in February 2011 I started to have horrible intrusive thoughts about harming her in some way. What if I did this. What if I did that. To cut a long story short, I sought help immediately and was lucky enough to be referred to an amazing team who worked with me from then right through to recently to get me better & help me understand that I was suffering from post natal (as we call it here in the uk) OCD and severe anxiety. Before I go on, if you're reading this and this and thinking 'two years?!! I can't wait 2 years to get better!!' It didn't take that long. I reckon a few months to get back into the rhythm of things and after that it was keeping my meds in check, having CBT and I did get bet better. 

     

    However, after months of reducing my meds I finally came off them about 5 weeks ago as we want to try for another baby.  Everything was going great but then 3 days ago - Xmas, great! - I felt that familiar anxiety creeping in and I just crashed. The intrusive thoughts are back, I am obsessing over the fear that I want to hurt my little girl. I'm thinking them so I must want to, right? I put my hand over her mouth to see if I could do it and of course I immediately pulled away. But that has scared the hell out of me. I'm back on meds and I know I'm doing everything right and I will get better again. But right now, here in the middle of it, I'm terrified. I think I may be too late on this post as it was posted a while ago, but if anyone has any words of support I old really do with them. Thank you xxx 

  • I have a 3 month old son and my experience is almost identical. The constant "what if" is enough to drive me crazy. I love this little guy more than anyone and anything I just can't fathom why I would have these thoughts. They break my heart but seeing that so many others experience this makes me feel a huge sigh of relief. I also have scheduled a drs apt for next week and am considering being put on Zoloft. I ask myself "why me?" every day. I want to be the best mom possible but this is so hindering and it's crushing me. : is there anyone on here who has had a total recovery? I would love to hear about it.
  • Thank you so much for sharing! I was diagnosed with OCD 3 years prior to getting pregnant, and was terrified that intrusive thoughts would come back after pregnancy. I was able to manage it so successfully the first time through SSRI and Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Shortly after my son was born(5 weeks ago!) I began having the thoughts again. It was so shocking that I forgot how to deal with them and started to regress back into the constant state of paranoia and worrying that I had experienced when I first was diagnosed years ago, uneducated about OCD. I am now relearning some of the CBT strategies and my psychiatrist is starting me back on a low does SSRI (bc I am breastfeeding). Even though I had already learned how to manage OCD the first time, this time was even more shaming and embarassing for me. It helps to know that there are others out there. I have to remember that it can be 2 steps forward 1 step back with OCD.   
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  • Marie oMarie o member
    Hello, I just want to say I feel your pain, but am so happy you are getting better. I have just been diagnosed with postpartum ocd.....it took a specialist to figure it out and name it for me.  I am taking a new ssri and praying it will help.  I get tired of the IT's.  I would love to know what has helped other women and I am so wanting to move on with my life and enjoy.  
  • stewzstewz member
    Thank you for posting this. Thank you thank you thank you. I have been terrified to talk about any of what i'm feeling and finally saw a psychiatrist today. I told her I was having intrusive worry thoughts and got a prescription to get help. 
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  • Thank you for sharing your story and posting your most morbid thoughts. I too suffer from ocd. My intrusive thoughts and daily panic attacks started in 2007. I thought I was going crazy and feared being admitted to a mental hospital. It wasn't until 2009 that I was diagnosed.

    I'll never forget it, I was in nursing school at the time and reading about major depression and psych disorders when all of a sudden I started to panic. I started to think about suicide and if I could do it, then that turned into - if I obsess about it, I will do it. Next thing you know, I was in the throws of a panic attack, crying to my husband stating I didn't know if I wanted to commit suicide or not. My husband just came back from a deployment (where they have to take a class on recognizing suicidal behaviors) and said: "that's it, we're going to the emergency psych dept." I was TERRIFIED! I thought for sure they would say I was a danger to myself and have me involuntarily admitted. Thank goodness, the therapist did not believe I actually wanted to hurt myself and sent me home with a list of local therapists to call. I believe the psychologist I ended up going to (out of a list of probably a hundred) was truly meant to be. 

    That first appointment, I made sure to I dressed myself perfectly and orderly - as to assure her I wasn't suffering from major depression or psychosis. I laugh looking back at this, because it probably only confirmed her diagnosis as OCD. It took her only about 10 minutes of her listening to me cry and panic about fearing: I was going to kill my husband, I was going to snap my cat's neck, or I had sexual feelings about the neighbor's kids.  (all of which are still terrifying to say these fears out loud to others).

    She pretty much told me the same things your therapist told you: the psychotic people who actually do these things, don't worry about doing them, they want to do it. She told me, I would probably be the safest person around my husband cat and other children. I felt relief almost immediately. Oh! I just remember another fear: this was after being on zoloft for a bit, with no more panic attacks. It was almost like one last hoorah from the OCD: I was afraid I was going to be possessed by an evil spirit! My therapist let out a good laugh!! Which made me laugh, because I was finally out of the tailspin of OCD and could stop and truly see the obsession. She then said to me in between giggles: "well we have a priest down the hall that can perform an exorcism, just in case."

    Now being almost 5 weeks pregnant, I worry about the future... the thoughts I might have, if taking zoloft is harming the little bean, if the dose won't be enough to battle the hormones and subsequent intrusive thoughts etc etc etc.  But I just have to remind myself that there are other women out there in this same predicament and I will not worry about it until/if the situation ever arises...

    My favorite saying: I'll cross that bridge when/if you get there.

    Thanks again for sharing and bravely posting your worst fears <3  

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  • I think it's VERY normal for women to experience surges of anxiety or depression with their hormones. 

    I didn't have problems with anxiety until after my daughter was born. My psychiatrist said sometimes that HUGE surge of hormones that happens during pregnancy (and then drops off immediately upon delivery) can kind of "trigger" a condition that was lying dormant (anxiety, depression, ocd, etc)

    When I got pregnant with Graham I was off my medication and it got really bad for me. The hormones of pregnancy obviously played a big part in that. I had to go to the hospital, but once I got back on my meds I was fine. I also have more anxiety and depression around the time I get my period every month.

    You're not alone. Hang in there mama! :)
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  • Thank you for sharing your story!  You are not alone!  Keep on seeking help and pushing forward.  Things will continue to get better and better.
    PPD/PPA Mom...it has been super hard, but I'm making it! Slow steps...
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  • Thank you for sharing your story and posting your most morbid thoughts. I too suffer from ocd. My intrusive thoughts and daily panic attacks started in 2007. I thought I was going crazy and feared being admitted to a mental hospital. It wasn't until 2009 that I was diagnosed.

    I'll never forget it, I was in nursing school at the time and reading about major depression and psych disorders when all of a sudden I started to panic. I started to think about suicide and if I could do it, then that turned into - if I obsess about it, I will do it. Next thing you know, I was in the throws of a panic attack, crying to my husband stating I didn't know if I wanted to commit suicide or not. My husband just came back from a deployment (where they have to take a class on recognizing suicidal behaviors) and said: "that's it, we're going to the emergency psych dept." I was TERRIFIED! I thought for sure they would say I was a danger to myself and have me involuntarily admitted. Thank goodness, the therapist did not believe I actually wanted to hurt myself and sent me home with a list of local therapists to call. I believe the psychologist I ended up going to (out of a list of probably a hundred) was truly meant to be. 

    That first appointment, I made sure to I dressed myself perfectly and orderly - as to assure her I wasn't suffering from major depression or psychosis. I laugh looking back at this, because it probably only confirmed her diagnosis as OCD. It took her only about 10 minutes of her listening to me cry and panic about fearing: I was going to kill my husband, I was going to snap my cat's neck, or I had sexual feelings about the neighbor's kids.  (all of which are still terrifying to say these fears out loud to others).

    She pretty much told me the same things your therapist told you: the psychotic people who actually do these things, don't worry about doing them, they want to do it. She told me, I would probably be the safest person around my husband cat and other children. I felt relief almost immediately. Oh! I just remember another fear: this was after being on zoloft for a bit, with no more panic attacks. It was almost like one last hoorah from the OCD: I was afraid I was going to be possessed by an evil spirit! My therapist let out a good laugh!! Which made me laugh, because I was finally out of the tailspin of OCD and could stop and truly see the obsession. She then said to me in between giggles: "well we have a priest down the hall that can perform an exorcism, just in case."

    Now being almost 5 weeks pregnant, I worry about the future... the thoughts I might have, if taking zoloft is harming the little bean, if the dose won't be enough to battle the hormones and subsequent intrusive thoughts etc etc etc.  But I just have to remind myself that there are other women out there in this same predicament and I will not worry about it until/if the situation ever arises...

    My favorite saying: I'll cross that bridge when/if you get there.

    Thanks again for sharing and bravely posting your worst fears <3  



    Ugh!  This is exactly what fears me most about TTC for #2!  So glad you have decided to go for it!  I'm still scared sh*tless, but want another baby so terribly bad!  You aren't alone, for sure!


    PPD/PPA Mom...it has been super hard, but I'm making it! Slow steps...
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  • I applaud you for your courage in sharing this story. Thank you
  • Thank you for sharing! I had my son a year ago and I still feel like I have PPD! I didn't know if it was too late to get help! I don't ever have thoughts about hurting him but I am very irritable and I have panic attacks weekly. I always feel like something is wrong with me or I am dying! I am a major Hypochondriac and can't control the feelings when I feel anxious. Its taking a toll on my marriage. I am worried about EVERYTHING!

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  • Bhession-
    Your story was me down to the T!
    I was reading it going "get this woman out of my head!"
    I suffered 2 mc right before my baby who is almost 2 now. I cannot believe how basically exact our stories are of suffering ppd/OCD/a and how we have overcome it. Thanks so much for sharing your story. And please know, your not alone! Xoxo
    CarrieAD27
  • Thanks for sharing your story.

    N14 mommy to be :)

    My favorites: husband, chocolate.

  • Wow. thank you so much for the courage to share your story. It helps to know there are others out there who are going through similiar situations.

    My story is a little different. My son is three years old. Most people would say its not PPD/PPA/PP OCD anymore, right? I say wrong.  I have been suffering through it for three years without help. I blamed it on other things, hormones, circsumstances, terrible twos, etc. But after reading your story and reading about PPOCD I do believe I have it.

    My son had major issues when he was born, almost died. So naturally I had the right to be obessesed with his life and scared to death of sids, right?  Then my sons dad has been on and off drugs and we have been in and out of court so I attributed stress and sadness to that. Then I broke my foot, tore ligaments in my ankle, had my sick dad living with me for free, etc. All things that are normal to be upset about.  But deep down I knew it was something else. I have been to counsleing, but I stop after a while. I have my ups and downs....mostly downs.

    I finally after almost going over the edge for the past few weeks....crying, screamin, at my child, in front of my child. Crying on his shoulder....sobbing uncontrollably. Screaming at him and the feeling terrible abnout it. Feeling completely out of control. Feeling lower than low. I went to doc and they prescribed zoloft.  I just started it today. I pray it works.

    I kiss my hand to my sons cheek probably 25 times in a row while he is sleeping beofre I go to bed. I cant stop unless I get this feeling of "satisfaction". I have to kiss him everytime I put him in the carseat. Up until the past few months, no one was allowed to drive with him. I used to panic about SIDS all time. I had a video monitor while he slept IN MY BEDROOM so when I turned my head one way I saw him in "real Life" and when I turned my head the other way I saw him on the monitor. I told his pediatrician I wanted to get an angel care monitor (the one that detects breathing) and she told me I needed to call my doctor immediately. I did and they prescribed zoloft but I was scared to take it. I still take his stuffed animals and all but one blanket out of his bed after he falls asleep. I have to have all of his outfits ready for the entire week on Sunday night. Its crazy irrational behavior and I know but I feel the need to do it anyways.

     

    So now I took my first Zoloft today and I have a couseling appt tomorrow. I hope it works. Thank you for sharing. I dont really have any advice expect to treat it NOW and do not wait like I did.  Before it gets worse and steals away what is suppsed to be the best time of yoour lives.

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