How supportive was your partner during PP?

I know my partner has been very supportive, main carer of 3 children during the psychosis, and whilst I had time away. Also since I'm on quetiapine, hes had to get up with baby in the night and get up with the older children in morning every day until the sedation wears off. He's off work currently still to help me as I have zero confidence as a mum and I'm suffering with depression and anxiety terribly. How did you cope if your partners were around constantly? I'm used to him being away 50 hours working a week and now we live in each others pockets. He's starting to become resentful that I can't wake up with the children or get up with the baby in the night which I understand but I can't do anything until I'm off quetiapine in a few days. Also he gets frustrated when I have bad days where I just want to cry and hide, because despite never having a mental health problem before, he believes you can just 'choose' to be better, no matter how many times I tell him thats not how it works, he thinks I'm 'choosing' to be ill, which is very upsetting. We now do about 50% of the childcare and housework each, but it feels that I'm just a burden to him and multiple times recently hes said it'd be better if he was a single dad rather than having me 'moping' around too. He apologises at other times and tells me he was just frustrated and didn't mean it, there's no one else we can get to help us, no one in either family wants to, they've told us that, so if he wants free time, I have to look after all 3 alone which I'm not comfortable with yet so that ends up putting me back so he comes home happy from his free time to find me a nervous sobbing wreck and starts an argument. I understand how much hes doing to support me and our children but it feels unbearable sometimes and it only makes me feel worse because he makes me feel guilty. How did you get through it?

4 Replies

  • Hello raspberries

    Thank you for letting us know just how you feel right now. Sometimes writing it all down is better than keeping it bottled up in your head. I can hear how you are struggling to cope. I agree that your partner has been very supportive but being together 24 : 7 is a lot for any relationship, even more so when PP is involved.

    I know it's difficult with your three lovely children but try to find space in your day when you can both sit down and put your cards on the table about how you both feel. I'm sure there's nothing you would love more than tend to your baby during the night, or wake up with your children? Right now though with your medication and the effects of PP this is not possible. You're not 'moping' around it's just so hard to lift your mood when you are in the grip of PP If only you could 'choose' to be well ......with PP there are no choices, you can't go round it, you have to go through it. Explain to your partner that although he thinks it's taking a while, it's a temporary illness and you will eventually be the confident mother you once were. I'm sure he's sorry for the things he has said but at the time and in your 'condition' they can be hurtful.

    Have you contacted your care team about how low you are feeling? I'm sorry your families are unable to help. Perhaps, as Naomi suggested, in a previous post the Home Start volunteers may be able to advise you?

    Trying to cope with PP and home life is very stressful. My first PP was a long time ago with frightening delusions. My husband was unable to cope with my issues in the very early days and thankfully had the support of my parents who I went to stay with. However, I was later sectioned to different general psychiatric units and spent six months in their care, with and without my son. So I only saw my husband during visiting hours and eventually at weekends when I was allowed home, which is not very helpful to you.

    I'm sure other mums here will be able to relate to your experience. Perhaps time out just for you, for an hour or so, is an option as you are going through so much?

    Take very good care of yourself

  • Hi raspberries

    Really feel for you both - the experience and fall out from PP can be a huge strain and now that the 'crisis' part is over it's tempting for everyone to expect life to just get back to normal... I guess the key for both of you here is going to be patience and a more gradual return to a new status quo. For any family it's a big deal going from two to three kids so go gently with yourselves.

    It would be well worth asking your mh team if there is a carers support service locally. My husband found counselling with them an invaluable space to vent and to know that feeling frustrated with the slow pace of recovery was understandable. I think it also helped him to have some time completely free of responsibility - he used to blast off on his mountain bike just to clear his head.

  • Oops didn't mean to hit send quite then!

    For you right now it's so important to not feel guilty. You have had a serious illness and in just the same way as cancer or a serious car accident, recovery takes time. Marriages do go through stuff that none of us would have wished for but it is possible to weather these times and emerge stronger.

    I'm so sorry your wider family won't help but do take a look at Home Start as they have been a lifeline to many of our members and having this support & companionship could ease the pressure on you both. Link here

    Naomi xxx

  • I dont feel my husband was very supportive to me through the worst stages of PP & its even worse now 2 years later as its all forgotten in his head but I am at a stage now that im reflecting on what happenend & feel really bitter about what happenend & feel he added & continues to add to my stress, depression & anxiety. Im bitter he never really did any research into PP & wouldnt listen to the professional doctors offering us advice & therefore jeopordised my recovery. Its so difficult as this illness strips u of yr confidence therefore u have to rely on them. Hope u feel better soon xx

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