TTC After a Loss

Anxiety/Mental Health Issues Check-in

I mentioned starting a check in for anxiety and other mental health issues related to TTCAL a month or so ago and I never started it, so here it is.

This is a safe place to talk about how your grief-exacerbated anxiety and other mental health issues are affecting your life and tying to conceive after loss. You definitely do not have to have an official diagnosis to participate here. 

1.) What types of anxiety/mental health issues are you dealing with?
2.) How are these issues affecting your daily life and relationships?
3.) What sorts of things are you doing to try to get better?(therapy, medication, yoga, meditation, crying in your car)
4.) What worries you the most about being pregnant again? 

If if these questions don't work for you, feel free to just free form it. My goal is to give us dealing with horrible anxiety a separate place to talk about these things and support each other.

Re: Anxiety/Mental Health Issues Check-in

  • 1. First, of I'm really glad you started this. I have been really struggling with depression since my clomid cycle in July. I can feel myself progressively getting worst. Working in the mental health field, I understand the signs and symptoms, but I don't really know what to do.

    2. I am struggling to do well at my job. It's hard to counsel others when you're in your own state of despair. Putting on a happy face isn't always possible. My poor husband....I have explained to him all that is going on, but he gets the brunt of my moodiness, he has been great though. I don't enjoy going out, or even being around family (this is a big deal, family is very important to me).

    3. I am planning to begin going to a counselor soon. I also am wanting to being working out,  working out increases serotonin levels, the "happy" chemical and reduces cortisone levels. Unfortunately my motivation is crap right now.

    4. What doesn't worry me? I always say I am just going to wait and see and not get my hopes up, of course by that time they are already rising higher and higher. Each twinge, change in cervix, different cm, or possible symptom effects me. After 7 losses I just pray for just 1 healthy pregnancy. Everything I do seems to somehow focus around how it would effect implantation or the baby.

  • chloe97chloe97 member
    edited September 2016
    @Cmckenzie It has to be so hard to work with people with mental health issues while dealing with them yourself. I'm so glad that you are meeting with a counselor and working out, I hear you on the motivation issues. I know I need to work out, but something always gets in the way.

    1.) I'm dealing with what I've self-diagnosed as PTSD, I'm suffering from horrible illness anxiety disorder (hypochondria) that is taking over my life. I'm constantly on edge about a new illness I think I may have and it's usually set off by a new symptom or a weird result on a health test. When I was pregnant, I was constantly googling why my betas only rose 3% in 48 hours at 5 weeks, but my baby's heart kept beating. Eventually I self-diagnosed my baby with Triploidy and 3 weeks later my Dr confirmed this with a CVS. The whole time, DH and my mom promised me everything would be plans my Dr remained optimistic.

    Now when I have symptoms and I google them and I decide I have pancreatic cancer, liver cancer, colon cancer, etc. DH, my mom, my Dr swear that I am okay and I can't believe them because Google was right and they were not. I obsess that I've drank too much, been exposed to too many chemicals, smoked for too long and now I'm going to die before I can be a mom. I worry if I actually have a child that I will die and he/she will never know his/her mom.

    I find myself detaching from the things I like to do, from friends, family. I have trouble concentrating and have had at least 4 or 5 real panic attacks.

    2.) My job is suffering, though, honestly I was in bad shape from anxiety during my pregnancy and between my last MC and being pregnant again. All told, 9 months of Shitty work. DH has his own depression issues and I hate how I'm bringing him down. I went to bed last night and woke up crying this morning because I hate that I'm suffering from PTSD. I want to TTA to get my shit together, but I feel like I can't and be able to have 2 kids bc I'm 37. Poor rainbow baby would be an only child because I can't get my shit together. Then the other part of me needs to be pregnant again so I'm able to resume normal behaviors towards pregnant ladies and friends.

    3.) Im working with a counselor who focused on grief and trauma starting Tuesday. I'm very hopeful she will work out since my last 2 therapists were busts. DH needs me to find someone. I'm trying to start meditation and mindfulness training, increasing my workouts, and maybe starting yoga. Going to ask my acupuncturist to treat my anxiety as well.

    4.) I honestly don't know how I will function as a pregnant lady again. I've been actually thinking that instead of betas and weekly ultrasound to limit my anxiety, that I may just try denial of the fact that I'm pregnant. Maybe I will just schedule a 9 week appt, get my NIPT test at 10 weeks, and get my first u/s at my NT scan. I'm not sure how I will be able to walk into the office where I had that horrible scan and got the briefing from the GC about how my baby likely had something very very wrong with it. I love my OB and don't want to leave her, but going back to that hospital will be so hard.

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  • 1.) I've always had anxious feelings and this process has of course exacerbated that. What Im really dealing with is social anxiety . It's so difficult for me to go to any type of social event or get together with people big or small. I feel nervous and anxious and absolutely dread it for weeks beforehand. I feel like I would rather do anything than go to  the (insert event). I can't be around pregnant women or babies ( which of course for my age group is difficult to avoid). Im so afraid that someone is going to say something that triggers me -asking about my baby plans, announcing theirs or someone else's pg. I feel like its so hard to just be out and about and it takes every ounce of strength I have just to be there smiling and trying to be "normal".

    2.) I feel like this has really changed my social life. DH has mentioned inviting people over for a football game etc. and I just can't have people coming over to my own home with their babies. Most of our closest friends have had babies in the past year so it is difficult to avoid. It makes this process so lonely. I feel like I have distanced myself from so many people. I want to go back to feeling like my old self - happy for other people and looking forward to different social events.

    3.) Im trying to talk about it more. I talk to/ see my Mom almost every day and she has been great. I thought maybe telling more people in my life about what is going on would make me feel better. But I told 2 friends a few weeks ago and they were less than supportive and it honestly made me feel worse. So now I am feeling a little gun shy about that idea. This Board and talking to 2 Friends IRL who have gone through losses has really helped. I just feel like unless you have gone through it you don't really know.

    4.) Im still waiting for my first AF post mc so I am currently benched. But I think I just assume I am going to have another mc once I do get pg so I start planing if I get pg here then I could mc here...Do  I want to deal with it when I am on vacation in December or over xmas? I know when I do get pg again it will just be 9 - 10 weeks of stress and anxiety and probably the whole way through but I will definitely be worse during the first trimester.
  • @cmckenzie - It is so hard to help people when you, yourself are suffering. I know how it feels to put on a "happy face" and pretend everything is okay - it is just so draining and exhausting and somedays you just can't do it at all.

    @chloe97 - I have suffered from hypochondriaism since I was in high school and my mother was diagnosed with cancer. I've convinced myself that I have everything and I think some people think its funny or don't take it seriously but  I know how terrifying and debilitating it can be. Its funny now that the worse thing has happened (twice) my hypochondriaism has abated. I don't know if it is because Im just focused on trying to figure out what is wrong and ttcal or bec the worse thing has happened and Ive survived and maybe that makes me feel better. Anyways, I know what you are going through and hope it gets better for you.
  • Aera11Aera11 member
    edited September 2016
    1.) What types of anxiety/mental health issues are you dealing with?
    I don't know what kind of anxiety I am dealing with, or if there is even a name for it, but it seems like small panic attacks.  Like @chloe97, I've also had bouts of hypochondria and thinking I felt a lump in my breast, etc.  My anxiety comes and goes, which makes it hard to cope with if it catches me by surprise.

    2.) How are these issues affecting your daily life and relationships?
    I sort of feel zombie like because I don't want to get into an emotional conversation with anyone in person because I cannot control the waterworks that follows.  I am sure part of it is that my hormones are so out of whack from all the new meds this cycle.  DH is going through it too and usually we can try to lift one another up but over the last two months we've had a lot of days that overlap and it's difficult.  My work is suffering in the way that I JUST DON'T CARE.  I am a self employed Wedding/Event Planner and normally I am super busy all summer.  I barely took any weddings (mainly because my first EDD was mid-May and then end of July), but my loss was January so I could have still taken on more and I didn't.  I have two interns who I am sure think I am insane.  I have little work for them which I feel bad about.  I am thinking whether I am or am not pregnant by the holidays, I am going to take some time off and work on me.  

    3.) What sorts of things are you doing to try to get better?(therapy, medication, yoga, meditation, crying in your car)  
    I have gone to therapy on and off for years and will continue to through all of this.  I have tried to do yoga and meditate but I am so in my head, that I cannot focus.  I wish I could cry in my car but I don't drive very far anywhere.  If I need to cry at night and genuinely want to be alone, I go sit in the dark guest room on the floor and sob.

    4.) What worries you the most about being pregnant again? 
    Honestly, I am terrified.  Even IF I can get pregnant again, since my last loss was a chromosomal abnormality, that is a huge fear I have/carry.  DH and I both checked out fine but our RE said it's still a 1 in 3 chance of having an egg with abnormalities.  Even if we make to NIPT and the 12 week mark, I don't feel any comfort or safety in that.  I am scared that the past will ruin me enjoying my pregnancy, even if all is well.  I will not feel 'ok' until I am holding a healthy baby.

    @Cmckenzie that is great that you want to start working out and meeting with a counselor.  As of late, I have had zero motivation to work out so that is awesome!

    @TScalei that's wonderful you have your mom!  My parents know too and I think them not knowing would be harder, we all need as much love and support as we can get.

    *edited for typos
  • @Cmckenzie I can't imagine the challenge of working with people with mental health issues while you are dealing with them yourself. I am happy to hear you will be seeing a counselor soon. I really think that will help! I also have issues with motivation. I know eating well and working out will help me, but I can't get myself there.

    @chloe97 I am so happy to hear that you scheduled an appointment! I think that is such an important step. I hope this is the start of a healing process for you. I finally reached out to a psychiatrist who specializes in OCD and anxiety disorders. We have been playing phone tag for a couple of days, but I am hoping I will get in touch with her soon so I can schedule something. 

    @TScalei Social anxiety is something I actually never dealt with until my miscarriage. After my loss I felt the same way you did, afraid to be around people for fear they would ask me triggering questions. I also felt 'weird' being around people who didn't know. I would get in my own head and all I could think about was the loss, and I almost didn't understand how everyone else could just be having fun and moving on in their lives when mine was standing still. It's something I still am trying to work through. I am so sorry that people you told IRL were not supportive. I found that telling more people was helpful because when they knew, I didn't spend that time in my head thinking about how they didn't know (if that makes sense). But I did of course get the annoying comments all of us just LOVE to hear about loss.

    @Aera11 I also tried meditation and it didn't work for me because the core of it is to let thoughts pass through your mind without really 'thinking' about them. And I could never get there. Hugs!
    Me: 28 DH: 26
    Married: November 2015  3 
    TTC#1: January 2016
    BFP #1: 5/02/16 - MC: 5/27/16
    BFP #2: 10/06/16: 6 - EDD: 06/20/17
    DD Born 06/23/17 3
    TFAS: April 2018
    BFP #3: 03/21/18 - CP
    BFP #4: 04/23/18 - EDD 01/04/19

  • 1. I have been dealing with depression it was getting better then I had my miscarriage and since it's been getting way worst.

    2.i have been finding myself not wanting to do anything and getting frustrated/aggravated easier. It's making me feel like a crappie mom to my 2 year old as I would get frustrated quickly with her as she has been going through teething and trying to be independent she is also not wanting to eat and very hyper and as much as it can be hard on a parent in general it's been really hard with depression. 

    We have also moved away from our family and friends in may so having no one here has also been really hard.

    3.i have been using essential oils to help, I'm also trying to get myself exercises even if I just do a walk, my husband has been very supportive and is trying to help me, he keeps encouraging me to get out and do something for me. I have started taking us to visit the early years centre and hopefully can meet some other moms.

    4. I'm nervous about having another miscarriage and having the depression/low labia I had with my dd again, I'm also worried about if I get as sick as I did with my dd how I'm going to take care of her I was non stop throwing up with my daughter. 
    Baby Birthday Ticker TickerBaby Birthday Ticker TickerImage and video hosting by TinyPicImage and video hosting by TinyPicImage and video hosting by TinyPic
  • @bitterbetty12 - Yes I think feel weird making small talk about my life and pretending to be upbeat when you have this huge secret. Its hard to talk about what's going on in your life when you are leaving out the biggest aspect. You are right it's just a weird feeling. So I think starting to tell people has helped bec at least I'm being honest. I am a bit disappointed in peoples respond but I think that's to be expected a lot of time.
  • All of you are so very strong for being willing to discuss these type of issues and I am sorry that you are going through it. 

    1.) What types of anxiety/mental health issues are you dealing with?  I have always struggled with my anxiety. It has been significantly worse since my loss. I feel myself second guessing everything I do and fearing that every situation will have the worse outcome. I have really fear about my husband or pets getting really sick or that something could kill them. After my first loss I started to notice the depression creeping in but it seemed to lessen a little. The I had my second loss and it was back even worse. Since we were bench for three month I asked my doctor for an antidepressant. I had been on one for a while after my brother died in a car accident a few years ago. 
    2.) How are these issues affecting your daily life and relationships? I know people can notice I am more irritable and anxios at times. Most of the time I can mask it at least I think. I can. My poor dh has had to deal with most of it.  Which he often feels helpless that he can't make me feel better (which is why he suggested we get a puppy a week after my first loss)
    3.) What sorts of things are you doing to try to get better?(therapy, medication, yoga, meditation, crying in your car). I do a lot of talking to my friends. Some people I didn't know had losses have shared their experiences. I have been on anxiety Med for a long time and continue to take them. I just stopped taking the antidepressant bc we are off the bench next Tuesday and it was one I could not continue to take when I am pregnant the anxiety medication I can. I have started working out. Motivation is hard and I hate it. But I do feel better 
    4.) What worries you the most about being pregnant again? 
    That is can happen again. That I waited to long to have children. That I may never have a bay and can I be ok with that. 

  • Small talk... man I have grown to hate that. I don't want to talk to people, especially about useless stuff. However, the meaningful conversations seem to be worst. I don't want to talk about emotional topics, I don't want to explain why I am acting "different." The worst is when people ask random questions like when I am going to have kids, or if I am pregnant. No I am not pregnant I just don't like you touching my stomach!

    Someone made the comment the other day that I didn't seem to like my job anymore. That was a bit of a brutal moment for me. So for the last week I have been trying extra hard to control my emotions, and keep a more positive attitude. I have been managing better, but at home it's like the day has been to much and I crash emotionally.

  • @Hopefulmommy1980 @cmckenzie - yup, I definitely feel more irritable and things that people say bother me way more than they would have before. I got my eyebrows waxed yesterday and the lady doing my eyebrows said that it seems like I don't handle pain well and that "normal" people don't seem too bothered by it. I just wanted to be like why don't you have 2 natural mcs by yourself at home and then talk to me about dealing with pain like a "normal" person. I know its a miniscule thing and before this I probably would have laughed about it but its just an example of those little comments that get under your skin.

    I just hate being this overly sensitive person who can have their feelings hurt at the drop of a hat. Glad I can come and vent and be understood here.
  • I am glad this thread was started. Such am important issue
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