Is it a relapse or its just the journey to recovery

I have been struggling with many different illness from ppOCD to PPD to PPP and I have diagnosed  and misdiagnosed .I had horrible experience with meds .I had a very bad luck with my psychiatrists ,after 4 months of suffering I started feeling real again since 6 weeks after I was put on 30 mg mirtazpine suddenly yesterday i had one of those horrible days i had before suddenly i felt so tensed ,angry ,unreal a combo of horrible mixed feelings I was so scared I get out of control and lose control and harm myself .I was so terrified that I get back to where I was then later at night I felt a bit better but still I feel so scared.I had flashbacks ,vivid dreams please can someone advice 

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42 Replies

  • Hello Riry

    Welcome to the forum.  I'm sorry you're struggling at the moment and you had a horrible day yesterday.  I can only comment on my experience of PP.  Have you had a baby recently or was it some time ago?  During my second PP I did have a relapse and it took me a long time to get back on my feet.

    Do you have someone at home to support you?  Is there a Crisis Team you can call when you feel the urge to self harm .... just someone to talk to as a distraction?  Is it possible you can arrange to see your psychiatrist urgently?  I can see that you mention you have had bad luck with your psychiatrists but I think you really need support.

    How have you been today after the horrible day yesterday?  I hope you have managed to rest.  Perhaps your medication needs to be changed or adjusted so that it works for you?  Stay safe tonight and if you do feel uneasy you can always ring The Samaritans 24 / 7 helpline on 116 123 just to talk about how you feel.

    Take very good care of yourself .......

  • Hello lilybeth this is me Riham from Egypt something happened to my account and I just registered a new one with FB account.I am still in Egypt and I was planning to go back home to dubai after I felt better .no matter crisis team hear my psychiatrist is useless he doesn't answer patients I don't feel as good as I was but better than yesterday.I dunno when this will end 

  • Oh hello Riham, sorry I know who you are now ...... I was only thinking about you the other day.  I'm so sorry you haven't had good support from your psychiatrist after all the things he was going to help you with.  It's so disappointing ...... your self harm is a cry for help and I hope your husband is looking after you.

    Did you manage to get any support from the mums in Dubai before you left?  I hope things will get easier for you soon.  Take good care and let us know if we can help.

  • Yes actually they are helping me  ,I was scared to cause myself a self-harm which means it's something I really don't want to do to myself so may be it's OCD but when I got this feeling suddenly I got scared that all the thoughts will get back again. Now I am scared to go back to Dubai and relapse .I want to ask this could happen while taking meds .I thought I totally recovered and will never face this terrifying moments again .when I will get totally over this .how long it took for other mama's to recover completely  

  • I'm glad you're getting some support.  I think you need to see a specialist to give you a proper diagnosis.  In that way you will be given the right medication and care plan for your recovery.  I know it's a very scary to think you might relapse but not all mums do.  With the right treatment all those terrifying memories will fade and you will get better.

    I know you are scared about returning to Dubai but I think the mums group there will be a great support to you. Perhaps one of the mums will have experienced something similar and can give you advice?  I know it's very hard for you to trust the professionals but if you can find a doctor who will listen, he / she should help you. It took me well over two years to find my place and regain my confidence but I did fully recover Riham, as you will too.

    We are all here for you if you need us.

  • Thank you so much lilybeth for your advice ,talking to you always makes me feel ,dubai mama's group recommend a specialist for me in Dubai and I booked already with him .but moving to dubai scares me a bit though I was so encouraged for this step but this down days made me took a step backward .I will do my best and will update you  

  • Hello Riham

    Thank you for your kind words.  Good to hear you are booked with a specialist in Dubai, I really hope he / she will be able to help you as you are having so much stress at the moment. PP is a frightening illness with all the intrusive thoughts and it takes a lot of courage to fight and distract yourself from them.  

    I'm sorry you're scared about moving to Dubai and feel let down after all the high hopes you were given to go to Egypt.  It's not easy for you but try to be hopeful that you will recover in time. Make sure you have lots of support around you to face the next stage in your recovery.  I think the mums in Dubai will be a great comfort to you as well as your family. 

    Take very good care of yourself.  Try and draw on all your courage and strength that has brought you this far.  I'll be thinking of you .... and we are all sending a virtual hug. 

  • Hi Riry

    I just wanted to let you know that your anxiety about going back home to Dubai made me think of my worries and anxiety about coming out of the mother and baby unit and going home. I was so anxious.

     I just wanted to reassure you, you do have to go home sometime and it really does sound like you have a lot of good support in place with the mum's and the psychiatrist etc. I know it is scary, but perhaps this is the time to make that big step. You can do it. Maybe it would be worth making some plans for your first couple of days - connecting with the mum's in some way? seeing the doctor? so you can be reassured? 

    Take care, keep writing whenever you need to, thinking of you

  • Thanks Ellie for writing to me ,I became so anxious that now I am so scared to go there .I had so much bad luck with my treatments but sometimes I tell myself that all of this might happened for a reason. Psychiatrists were so mean to me and their medication .sometimes I feel so lost but then in my prayers I feel there is still a hope.i still get this psychotic thoughts but now it scares me less than before .now I deal more with my intrusive thought but sometimes I feel so weak and scared .I was so pleased that I was feeling good for 6 weeks .but now I feel I am getting back to where I like a living nightmare .did you have the same .now I feel the best time when I go to bed. I am thinking seriously to take this big step my husband says I must adapt to my life again .I will make sure that nanny will spent the nights with me .I have some questions ,when did you get over this illness ?is this temporary or I might stuck in this forever ? 

    Hugs and kisses 

  • Hi Riry 

    I'm so sorry you've been through such an awful time, with being misdiagnosed etc. I do have to say my experience was that recovery was up and down.... I would have some good weeks and then a few 'bad' days and I'd feel really awful and think I'd gone 'backwards' but then I did get better again. Hold onto that you have had 6 good weeks, this does mean you are recovering and getting better. 

    What support do you have now? do you have a mental health team that is supporting you? do you see them regularly and is there anyone you meet who you feel you can trust? are you able to call them when you need them? 

    You will get better. It sounds like also you are coming to terms with the trauma you went through (e.g. with vivid dreams etc), this is normal from everything I have read of others experience, and my own too. 

    Take care, write whenever you want to on here and I hope you'll get some other replies. X 

  • Thanks Ellie for writing to me ,I became so anxious that now I am so scared to go there .I had so much bad luck with my treatments but sometimes I tell myself that all of this might happened for a reason. Psychiatrists were so mean to me and their medication .sometimes I feel so lost but then in my prayers I feel there is still a hope.i still get this psychotic thoughts but now it scares me less than before .now I deal more with my intrusive thought but sometimes I feel so weak and scared .I was so pleased that I was feeling good for 6 weeks .but now I feel I am getting back to where I like a living nightmare .did you have the same .now I feel the best time when I go to bed. I am thinking seriously to take this big step my husband says I must adapt to my life again .I will make sure that nanny will spent the nights with me .I have some questions ,when did you get over this illness ?is this temporary or I might stuck in this forever ? 

    Hugs and kisses 

  • Hi Riry

    I'm so sorry you're feeling like this. I do have to say after about 6 weeks of getting better I too became very anxious and then did become depressed, which sounds a bit like you have. It was really awful, particularly the anxiety and depression which sounds like where you are now. But i promise you, it does get better. Just slowly I recovered, having longer and longer periods where I felt OK, until it was months where I felt well and then I never felt unwell again. But each person's recovery is different.

    It does sound like you have a lot of good support for you at home, with a nanny, a psychiatrist, the mum's group... but I know that doesn't help with the anxiety. I felt so anxious about going home from the Mother and Baby Unit too, I have felt exactly like you have. I somehow coped with it by having a few short visits home first, but I know that isn't possible for you.  But I got through it, and the anxiety did go away once I got home as it wasn't as bad as I imagined it would be at home, it was the illness just telling me I couldn't cope at home. 

    I just wondered if there is a way your parents could come back with you, even just for a couple of weeks, just to help you with the transition? 

    I promise, you will recover. Take care  and please write and ask anymore questions, I hope what I have said is helpful X 

  • Hi Ellie,thanks for your reply ,unfortunately no one will be able to come and I feel already guilty cause they also suffered as much as me .I don't know if it is a relapse or the meds stopped working ,I really don't know what to do 

  • Hi Riry

     I am so sorry you're feeling so bad. You are on the road to recovery, you are just having a 'blip' which is so common for PP. Can you see the psychiatrist / doctor who prescribed you your current medication? It may be they need to be increased, or they could give you something else to help such as something for the anxiety? I needed my meds adjusted at different points, I know when I was due to go home and became very anxious my meds were increased and then they decreased them a few months later when I settled down. 

    It really is normal for PP that you would feel this way, anxious to go home. In some strange way it may be better you go back home as soon as possible so that you don't build it up more and more in your head? When are you due to go home?

    Take care, we're here for you, keep writing whenever you need to X 

  • My psychiatrist doesn't answer any patients calls and I can't reach him ,I should go home Friday morning to 

  • Oh Riry that's terrible that your psychiatrist won't answer the calls. Can you or your husband go down to his office i wonder and insist that he sees you? Are you still feeling terrible today?

     I wonder if you can try and distract yourself a bit and stay busy, and make yourself do things? I found that helped, such as adult colouring in (we have 'grown up' colouring books), household chores? I would try and set myself just a little goal once an hour - just say "I will do the washing up and put the laundry on" - and then the next hour "I will walk round the corner to the shop". It did help me get through the day, and helped me to feel I had achieved something. 

    Try to do anything that may distract you from the anxious thoughts, though I know that is really difficult to do. 

    Take care Riry X 

  • Yes I will do so, I was trying to distract myself and writing my health condition to the psychiatrist in Dubai .I just wanna get over this .we are now away from home by 150 km .we are on holiday by the sea and leaving after tomorrow, I don't want to ruin everything for my family they re just having a good time and I am just out of place .I will do my best to set goal and achieve it . 

  • Hi Riry

    That sounds so good to start preparing things on your return, such as writing to the psychiatrist in Dubai. I know well that feeling of being with family having a good time, but just not feeling part of it and out of place. I remember well when I was really unwell at my dad's birthday party. It's such a horrible feeling, but believe me, it doesn't last forever, you are going to get better. 

    Thinking of you loads X 

  • Thank you so much Ellie you are such adorable person. You always give me hope thank God I am blessed to find this support group. I wish one day I would volunteer and do help other mama's like you do with me .Loads of Love and Hugs 

  • Hi Riry, that's really lovely for you to say. Its so good to be able to support other women, to give others hope, because there is hope and me and lots of women on here are proof of that! I will be thinking of you this week, really hoping the settling back at home goes ok and wishing you strength, you are strong, to have battled everything you have had to so far, I know you can do this, even though it is so hard! 

    Take care XX 

  • Hello Riry

    I just wanted to wish you a safe journey home.  I really hope you will be able to see the psychiatrist so that you can have treatment as soon as possible.

    I think if you are not satisfied with your treatment you could go to the outpatient clinic of any hospital for the attention you deserve.  It's not easy but try to stay strong.  One day you will be able to enjoy times with your family and not feel out of place.

    Take very good care ...... hoping all will go well for you. Stay safe.

  • Thank you so much lilybeth for you lovely wishes ,I already booked with a psycaitrist there I am still worried about going back home ,today I challenged myself to drive back from the red Sea and I did it ,I drove almost 200km by myself 

    ,I wish I will feel a bit better before I go home 

  • Hello Riry

    Sorry I didn't reply earlier as I was at work.  I'm not sure if you're back home by now. You did really well to challenge yourself when you're not feeling so good.  I think that's what recovery is all about ...... taking on a challenge each day, small to start with and then after building your confidence you can try a bigger challenge? Mind you, driving 200km by yourself was a big challenge and you should be very proud of yourself.  It's a great achievement ........

    I really hope the psychiatrist can offer you the hope that you will feel better.  I'm sure the mamas group in Dubai will be a really good support as you settle back into your routine.  It's not easy being ill and coping with routine so take a day at a time and try not to push yourself to be well.  Lean on your husband as he seems to be very understanding.

    Thinking of you.  Stay safe and take good care. xx

  • I have a question , I am experiencing random flashback memories and dreams while awake without anything to trigger it .have you heard of anyone experienced the same . It's kind of weird 

  • Thank you lilybeth for your reply ,I always appreciate your support 

  • Hello Riry

    While recovering from PP I think we all experience flashbacks without any trigger. Perhaps we have so much stored in our memory that every now and again we have a flashback?  Even all these years later I can be taken back in a split second to a flashback in my PP experiences without a trigger.  As you say, it's weird but you are not on your own.  I haven't had dreams while being awake, only delusions, but other mums here might have had them.

    If you have time, perhaps you could list your flashbacks and dreams so that when you see the psychiatrist it might give him / her an insight into what you are coping with daily? 

    We are all here for you if you need us.  

  • Thank you so much lilybeth, you are always helpful ,I will write it down for my psychiatrist and hopefully he will have explanation .have a good night 

    Hugs and kisses 

  • Take care Riry ....... thinking of you xx

  • Hello Riry

    I hope you are settling at home now and that your psychiatrist will be able to give you the help you need.   

    Take very good care of yourself .......

  • Hello Riry

    I hope you are feeling a little better today. I think going home is the best option for you so that you can see the Psychiatrist. Having the support of a nanny might help you to relax and as I mentioned before, she might become a good friend to lean on? There is also the mamas group in Dubai to contact.

    I hope you will be able to talk more openly with your husband so that he understands and can support you. We are all here on the forum too.

    Take care ....... hopefully a proper diagnosis will make all the difference.

  • Hello lilybeth, I was feeling a bit better today until my husband told that my step daughters are coming to dubai for two days and I felt my anxiety is killing me and I told they can't stay with me .I am not in a healthy state to be stressed more. I really was very argumentative. I felt for some how he really doesn't really feel what I am going there .he told me no worries they won't stay with us.I wish things would really get better .I am so scared everyone I get anxious and angry that I would go crazy or do any unconscious act. I am still sticking to my plan .

    Hugs and kisses


  • Hello Riry

    Good to hear from you. I'm sorry you had a bit of an upset about unexpected visitors. It is very difficult to cope with the added stress of people being around when you are feeling so unwell. It's good that your husband was understanding although you feel he might not be in tune with you sometimes. It's very hard for other people to understand how much anxiety you are feeling at the moment.

    You have done really well to cope so far, so try to stay as calm as you can. Have you made an appointment with the psychiatrist? One step at a time and you will feel more in control as time goes on with treatment.

    Keep talking here if it helps you. We are all here to lean on. xx

  • Hello lilybeth ,my husband was really understanding and I know his daughters are coming not for pleasure it's only 2 days for business issues .but I am not ready to receive any visitors specially I don't want them to know my condition cause it will never add something on the contrary.

    Lilybeth ]ou have been always encouraging me to get better and you have been always honest .going through forums made me questioning myself, why many mums where under professional medical care and had relapses .even mums that were hospitalized had relapses or their condition remained with all the meds and medical support .



  • Hello Riham

    Are you at home in Dubai now? I'm glad your husband is continuing his ongoing support for you. It's best not to have too many visitors if you are not up to entertaining at the moment.

    I'm not a medical person so not really sure how to answer your question about relapses. I had very good general psychiatric care but relapsed. I think it's to do with being overwhelmed, or stressed, or not taking medication. PP is not an enduring illness so if you are given such a diagnosis it's reassuring to know that a full recovery is possible. Are you taking any medication at all? What's the plan you are sticking to?

    Take care and stay safe.

  • I am taking now mirtazpine 30 mg I just take it for sleep, it just helped me to boost my mood for 2 weeks and > am taking it since 2 months .that's it I don't have any other plan > am just trying to eat healthy and sleep well

  • HI Riry

    Good to hear from you. Are you back home in Dubai now? It's totally understandable about getting anxious about your visitors. I remember feeling like that, and not being able to cope with too much. You need things to be quiet and gentle at the moment.

    It sounds like you should definitely see the psychiatrist in Dubai as soon as possible, that the mum's group recommended. I'd really suggest you keep writing a diary of your moods, and thoughts you have etc, so you can give the psychiatrist a lot of information when you see him.

    I really hope you'll start getting better soon , write whenever you need to


  • Hello Ellie I am traveling to Dubai in 2 days and I could get the first appointment on the 22nd of May but I asked them to put me on waiting g list in case there is a cancelation to have appointmet earlier .

  • Hello Riry

    That's a good plan you have .... sleep and healthy eating. I hope there is a cancellation with the Psychiatrist that you can slot into, although the 22nd is not too far away but you need help as soon as possible. Perhaps the mamas in Dubai will be able to support you until then? You have done really well to fight all your thoughts and feelings. I know it's very tiring so resting is a good plan.

    Take care, we are all here for you ......

  • Riry,

    I think you already found the answer to your question. Life is such a roller coaster, you just have to try and surf with the waves and not against it. Trying to accept and tolerate that every up and down will enrich your growth and knowledge of who you are and where you want to go. Easier said than done, because our illness and/or condition always has little challenges ahead. Be brave and embrace life and your path of recovery. Share your experiences with others, you help not only yourself, but other women on this forum.

    Take care and good luck, Sabine

  • Hi Riry, I just wondered how you are? I think you were travelling home today? I really hope it has gone ok and that you get to see the psychiatrist as soon as possible. I hope you don't feel overwhelmed, that having a nanny will help you, and you'll get the support you need.

    Keep writing here whenever you need to X

  • Hello Ellie , hope you lilybeth are well thanks for asking about me. my flight is in few hours, today I felt a bit better had some courage for going home but I am so anxious now :) but at least I am glad that I am going home seeking for help again .Today out of the blue 's volunteer that supports me agreed together that we meet for coffee if I am fit enough for it .I asked my husband to attend with me my appointment as he seems to be a bit careless about my illness .I will meet the psycaitrist and make a plan and if it failed we will make another one and I will try to be as stronger as you ,I know this will come by patience and getting the right treatment.will keep you updated



  • Hello Riham

    Safe journey home to you. It's not surprising you feel anxious as you have a lot to sort out but I think that one of the mamas meeting you for coffee is a good first step. I think this illness is very hard for family and friends so if your husband goes with you to your appointment he might have a better idea of how hard it is for you. You have been very patient with all the disappointments you have had so I really hope the psychiatrist can offer you a diagnosis and the right treatment.

    Take good care of yourself ...... we are here for you. x

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