I'm going to try not to babble but I don't really know where to begin .. I'd really love some advise as a therapist has mentioned that my thoughts are possibly psychotic but I thought they were anxiety.
Since being a teenager I've struggled with anxiety / Ocd intrusive thoughts which has come and gone over the years with help from CBT and Ssri .
When I became pregnant I was very highly anxious of losing the baby so started being overly cautious with everything, for example wouldn't put sunscreen on for fear it could harm the baby ! I was terrified of somehow contaminating and harming my baby . When I was 5 months pregnant a very close friend tragically experienced a stillbirth of son at 38 weeks pregnant . As well as being devastated for her this greatly increased my anxiety and I became convinced that I wouldn't be coming home with a baby that was alive . Pregnancy really was hellish for me and I was in a constant state of anxiety . One other thing I have to add is that when pregnant I went for a 3D scan and I really thought the baby on the picture looked odd and scary and became worried that the baby was going to be odd looking / deformed in some way and scared I wouldn't love him or something .
When my son was born alive I have never felt such shock and relief and actually commented to the midwife my surprise he was alive which was probably a little odd .
I really hoped this would be the end of the horrific anxiety but it wasn't . When they handed me my son , rather than being overwhelmed with love and thinking he was perfect as I'd imagined I saw this really odd looking baby that reminded me of a man I used to work with who I didn't like very much . At other times I would look at him and he looked cruel or even felt he reminded me of a certain type of dog . I know this sounds crazy and it makes me want to cry writing this . I remember looking at my partners face and thinking he looked ashamed and my thoughts were " he is upset / disappointed I me for making a baby that looks so odd " . I struggled to look at my son and when I went up to the ante natal ward I felt so depressed and felt no bond when I looked at my son , I just felt detached , confused and terrified .
I tried to push these thoughts out of my head when I came home and there was times where I could see my son for the perfect beautiful little boy he was . But when people came round to visit I felt paranoid that they were thinking he looked odd / ugly / cruel but were too kind to say anything . I did ask my mum a few times if she felt he was odd looking and she would laugh and say how beautiful he was . I felt such utter self hatred for having these thoughts as if I was my own babies worst critic and it made me feel so low I had frequent thoughts of running away or suicide . I found it hard to look at pictures of my son as it would lead to thoughts like " he looks cruel / bad" which then led he to believe I was the worst person in the works for thinking such thoughts .
I also had more general anxiety about his safety , was hardly sleeping at night due to fear of cot death and would pretty much sit up all night watching him to make sure breathing .
I decided I could never tell anyone the horrific thoughts I was having and I just prayed they would go away . However I was utterly devastated and felt so guilty for these thoughts and although I feel I did love abs care for my son I felt I wasn't bonding properly . I decided tense thoughts just meant I was a really shallow terrible mother who was struggling to bond with her baby due to his appearance and just felt self loathing . I was so shocked at the thoughts as never I my life had I thought a baby looked cruel or even ugly how the hell could I be thinking this about my own baby ????!This morphed into contamination fears and I started to excessively wash my hand and my sons clothes etc , oft entering up to 3 hours to sterilise .
Eventually I knew I had to do something as my mood was getting lower and lower so I visited the GP who prescribed fluoxetine . I work in the NHS so couldn't really be referred to the local CBT service as I knew a lot of the staff . The Meds did help somewhat and the horrible thoughts about my sons appearance quite rapidly reduced and I was just left with the contamination fears . I finally felt like u expected to feel as a mother , eg, completely in love with my son and overwhelmed with how perfect and cute he was and wanting to show him off . I then felt terrible guilt for ever thinking anything different .
The contamination fears continued though , to the point of my hand constantly bleeding . So I sought private CBT with a lady I had previously seen who was fantastic . It took me weeks to tell her the thoughts I had about my sons appearance when I first met him due to feeling so ashamed of the thoughts . However when i told her she didn't hate me as I'd expected but instead said she thought I had possibly been on the border of psychosis and that I was clearly white unwell and not to think it meant I was a terrible person . It was a little scary to hear the term psychosis but as the thoughts had now gone and I recognised hormones can make you feel a bit crazy and every day I just felt relief that I could see my son as everyone else did.
We continued with the CBT and exposure to the contaminants which was tough but I was progressing really well . We also noticed a link between my PMS and worsening symptoms and it was always much harder 2 weeks before my period.
So in my last PMS stage ( 2 weeks ago ) the horrible thoughts about my sons appearance came back . I was so sad by this and actually started to get anxious about looking st my son fir fear I would get the horrible thoughts and thus confirm I am the worst horrible mother in the world . I start to try and avoid looking at him or conversely I will keep looking st him to see if I can see the oddness . At times I can't see it and I feel such an overwhelming sense of relief and joy but then I'll have a horrible thought back like " I hate your face " about my son or " your so ugly " . I feel so sick with guilt even writing this as j am certain I don't mean what I think !! I would do anything to get rid of these thoughts .
I know I love my son and everyone tells me I am a good mum but I honestly feel do wrecked with guilt now the thoughts have come back . I told my therapist this week that they had come back and she seemed concerned but agreed that I'm not currently psychotic , I can't be as I do know these thoughts are not in touch with reality most of the time .
I finally opened up to my best friend and mum this week about the awful thoughts and they both think they are just ocd intrusive thoughts and were vey kind and said I am not a terrible person . But deep down I'm still terrified that I am just an awful shallow person and then I get scared , what if I don't love my son , what if I then killed him ? I know I never would but the thought still terrifies me
So sorry for the very long post just if anyone can in anyway relate or offer any help I'd be so grateful xx