Long Term PP?

Hello. I am new to this site which I have joined as my daughter (aged 22) suffers from PP. She is currently in a mental health hospital for the third or fourth time. I have done lots of research on PP looking for similar stories to my daughter. By the looks of it her PP developed quite late after birth and very suddenly without showing any symptoms except tiredness (she went out to the shops one day and hours later I got a phonecall telling me she had been admitted to a mental health ward after an episode in the shop) - my grandson was 10 months old. He is now 2 1/2 and she has still not fully recovered. She has had several medication changes and each time it is decided to do this she is admitted to hospital again which is extremely upsetting for all of us around her particularly her partner and son.

When she was first diagnosed she and my grandson still lived with me in our family home and I feel very guilty that I did not notice that something was wrong although I helped her as much as possible and tried to make life as easy as I could for her remembering how much work a new baby is!

Is it typical for PP to affect someone for this long? I am hoping that it is just a case of getting her medication right. She has been in hospital for 2 weeks so far and she appears to be improving (she tells us that the voices are getting quieter and she is beginning to recognise that they are not real) which she has never said before. Until recently she had not accepted that there was anything wrong with her but now she is speaking up to her CPN etc. despite the risk that she will be hospitalised again.

I would appreciate anybody's opinion on this and feel free to ask for more info.

Thanks

11 Replies

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  • Hi vickyhay

    I am sorry to hear that your daughter is not well. As you sayher episode of pp doesn't follow the usual pattern, for example I was ill very suddenly and acutely when my son was 3 days old. But each person is unique.

    As you say it is good though that she is recognising she is ill and talking to her cpn. I wondered if you have seen all our info on our website. We have a recovery guide etc. But I also wondered, if you are in the UK, whether the second opinion psychiatry service may help. She would bed to be referred by the psychiatrist treating her. Dr Ian Jones is a specialist in perinatal mental health, bipolar and pp. The link is here app-network.org/what-is-pp/...

    Perhaps you could print it off and give to her?

    I hope you and your family have the support you need too. I know how hard it is for everyone

  • Hi Ellie

    Thanks for your reply. We are in Dundee in Scotland but I will definitely look into her seeking a second opinion as her treatment so far has been quite erratic - although the doctor this time appears to be making a bigger effort than previous ones, doing things like taking the time to look into her past and contact other health professionals she has crossed paths with.

    Thanks again, Vicky

  • Hello Vicky

    Welcome to the forum where you will find lots of helpful advice from mums who have had PP. I'm sorry your daughter is in hospital at the moment but PP is a temporary illness, although very frightening at the time, and she will fully recover with good medical care and your loving support.

    I had my first PP when I was 23, many years ago now and it struck within the first few days. However, as Ellie said, we are all unique and have different experiences.

    I would like to direct you to a post written some years ago by JonsieB "A Granny's PP experience - Supporting your Daughter (posted on behalf of my mother who was by my side throughout)" which might be helpful to read, healthunlocked.com/app-netw...'s-pp-experience-

    Please don't feel guilty .... when someone is in the midst of PP we are very hard to understand or believe. Before I was sectioned into general psychiatric care I was also hearing voices, commanding me, all very real and frightening at the time. Eventually I made a full recovery, as your daughter will now she talking to her CPN.

    Take care of yourself too as this is an upsetting time for everyone. I'm sure your grandson is a joy .........

  • Thank you Lilybeth. I had come across the post you mentioned after I wrote mine and it helped a lot knowing that the lady's daughter has made such a good recovery. It wasn't that I didn't believe my daughter it was just that I didn't see anything wrong as she is very good at hiding it. Most people that know her don't realise there is anything wrong and are shocked when they find out. I am hopeful that she will fully recover as she has the determination and support to do so. It is nice to hear from people who understand and I am going to encourage her and her fantastic partner to look at this website. My grandson is brilliant! Despite her illness she has done a fantastic job and he is a healthy, happy, funny, clever little boy who I dote on!

  • Hello Vicky

    I'm glad you found the post ..... JonsieB is also a volunteer here. We have all had the same illness but each recovery journey is different. It's good that you are talking about your daughter to people who know her.

    A few years ago I met Prof Jones of APP who, after checking my medical records, was able to confirm I had suffered PP all those years ago, something I wasn't aware of until then. This was such a relief to me and I hope he will also be able to reassure you if your daughter decides to be referred.

    As you have been looking on the site you might have also come across "Husband in a Storm" which might be helpful for your son-in-law to look at.

    I hope your daughter will feel able to look at the forum. There are so many brave women and families who have shared their stories here and we are privileged to help if we can.

    Take care and try not to worry. Your daughter will fully recover in her own time and will feel very supported by you and her family.

  • Hi Vicky and welcome to the forum,

    You have already had some really great responses, and as someone who has previously accessed the Second Opinion service through APP , I know I found it very useful and reassuring. It is a little different in that I had a consultation when expecting my 2nd baby, as there was no local perinatal service and we were struggling to see any mental health teams to get input. It was also beneficial to my husband, who felt reassured by the information we were given. I'm glad that other posts have also reassured you. There are a few grandparents on here; whilst PP is awful for the woman, it can also be tough for the whole family.

    It's good to hear that you are feeling that the psychiatrist currently treating your daughter is being supportive and looking into her history. I hope that she will soon be feeling better and that recovery continues for her. Whilst everyone's experiences of pp are different, it's true for many of us that recovery can be a long and hard road. But with good support and family around her, she will get there. Take care, xx

  • Thank you Hannah, I have reached out to Second Opinion as I am not sure how accessible it will be as we live in Scotland. I am still waiting for a response x

  • Hi Vicky, the other information which might be of assistance to your family would be from Perinatal services in Scotland (there are 2). Here is the link showing Mother & Baby Units, where the perinatal teams are based, and if you click on the pins it should have details: app-network.org/what-is-pp/...

    I hope that your daughter continues to do well and you get further support too as a family, take care, xx

  • Thanks Hannah, she has already spent time in a MBU in Livingston when she was first diagnosed. I don't think she would be willing to go back to one as here she is allowed out daily and has now started getting overnight passes so she is still able to spend a good amount of time with Oscar and his dad. Thank you though xx

  • Hello Vicky

    That's a good sign that your daughter is being allowed out daily and is having overnight passes. When I was recovering after my first PP I was allowed home firstly for one night over a weekend and eventually for a whole weekend! I have to say when I first went home I was like a fish out of water without the security of the hospital routine but soon looked forward to going home for good ..... especially to be with my son and family.

    Grandchildren are a delight ..... I have four tiny little people. I missed the very early days of my newborn sons but I have been privileged to hold my treasured grandchildren in my arms. You must be relieved to see your daughter slowly recovering.

    Take care.

  • Hello Vicky

    I hope your daughter continues to improve in hospital. It's so good to hear that she is allowed out daily, especially if the weather is sunny in Scotland.

    Take care .... thinking of you.

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