How long psychosis last

Hey girls,

I'm new here and so happy I found this so I can relate to other women. My first question is how long did psychosis last for you girls ?

31 Replies

  • Hello MichelleO

    Welcome to the forum ..... we are all here to offer advice and support to mums and families coming to terms with PP and recovery. Can I ask if you or someone you know has had PP?

    I had PP twice and was very ill so I'm not quite sure exactly how long the psychosis lasted. Some of the mums here will be more specific as their total recall is amazing. Years ago with my first psychosis and without MBU care, I was sectioned. I spent six months in various psychiatric units and it took me well over two years to regain my confidence and place.

    Similarly, with my second psychosis I was again sectioned to general psychiatric care but mainly treated at home with a Psychiatrist, CPN and Health Visitor coming to our home regularly. Unfortunately, I had an enduring depression during recovery but eventually fully recovered on both occasions.

    Take care ..... please keep writing here if it helps.

  • It's good to feel I'm not alone I'm just feeling defeated I have good days and bad days is it normal to still have some symptoms while on medication ? I still have fears I will sleep walk and hurt him in my sleep I also am afraid I'll snap and blackout if I'm alone or not being watched :(

  • Hi MichellO,

    I really feel for you when I read your mail. I too experienced fears and very bad paranoia when I was discharged from hospital after 5 weeks. I questioned everything that was happening around me. My delusions of course had gone due to quick acting olanzapeine 20mg. My confidence was so low and I still felt I was such a bad mother. Looking back now I realise that till was all due to the illness. I had no MBU as I am in Ireland and it was so awful to be separated from my daughter when she was just 3 weeks old. This site is invaluable, as you get to talk to mothers who have gone through exactly the same thing. I really hope you get the care and support you deserve and are feeling better soon. Try not to be too hard on yourself as it really does take months to start feeling 'normal' or back to yourself again xx

  • Hi MichelleO,

    Welcome to the forum, I'm glad you've found us.

    I had PP in 2012 around 3 weeks after the birth of my first son.

    I think I was acutely psychotic for a few days before they found the right medication for me, then I gradually came back round and returned to reality over a couple of weeks I think, I responded well to treatment. I was in an MBU for a month and think I felt quite 'normal' for the last week before going home - up to that point after coming out of the very acute phase where I was completely out of it, I was very confused, paranoid and questioning everything around me, gradually becoming more rooted in reality as the days passed. Once home it took some time to come to terms with what had happened though luckily I stayed on an even keel and I recovered well and quickly.

    I'm sorry you're still having symptoms now, can I ask how old your baby is and how long it has been since you were diagnosed? Have you been in an MBU / hospital? Are you in the UK? I'm assuming you're at home at the moment?

    It's good you are on medication but it can take some time to get the dose and balance right - I'm sure it's common to have symptoms until that is sorted. And it's very common to have good and bad days, ups and downs, to worry and lose trust in yourself after your mind has let you down in such a massive way...recovery can be a bumpy road.

    I hope you have good support around you? Please don't keep how you are feeling to yourself in case your medication does need adjusting, try and be open and honest with those around you and involved in your care so they can respond and make sure you're getting the appropriate care and treatment. The thoughts and concerns you are having are quite normal I'm sure, and the fact you are aware of them is a good thing and shows you have insight. In time you will become more confident and trusting in yourself. Don't suffer in silence though in the meantime.

    I hope you're getting some rest. Do keep writing here, take care.

    J x

  • I didn't have a mommy baby unit sadly I wish I did. I'm in a much better place but still depressed and questioning things. I was hospitalized 2 different times for 2 weeks each the last one they put me on latuda which has been the best thing but I think something needs to be changed in just afraid they change the wrong thing and I get worse. I live in the us.

  • Also I'm 5 months post partum and I was diagnosed when my son was 2 months but knew I had something wrong with me after a week of giving birth.

  • Thanks for coming back. I don't know how things work in the States but hopefully you'd be quite closely monitored while any medication changes are made. Do you feel able to monitor yourself as well and perhaps keep a note of things so you can show those looking after you? I completely understand your concerns about having anything changed but if it's needed I'm sure it would help once that balance has been found.

    I'm glad you're in a better place but sorry you're depressed, it seems quite common for the psychosis to be followed by a period of depression which seems such a cruel blow on top of what you've already been through. Each of us has a different story to tell of our experience of PP and recovery - it can feel so hopeless at times but have hope that you will get through this.

    Thinking of you x

  • That is something I can deff try thankfully my mom is coming back when my husband goes back to work so it'll be another month before I'm alone and I just hope a lot happens in that month I'll feel on top of the world comparing back to how bad I was and then all the sudden someone will talk to me about it and I'll re live it especially when someone feels the need to tell me this opportunity is open when they don't understand it just makes me feel like they don't understand and it will ruin my day and start being paranoid again last night I had my husband sleep on my legs so if I got up to hurt the baby he would wake up it's so awful

  • Yes. The states is VERY different. I don't know why they are so behind on mental illness but they are. It took me seeing a handful of doctors and I was still not seen properly. I and to be away from my baby for 6 weeks and was in a treatment center that meant I had to pay out of pocket! It was expensive but it did help. They did yoga mediation, therapy, medication, swimming etc. I would have loved mbu as I was with drug addicts and alcoholics who were also being treated and I would have loved to be with other moms, as I often felt very alone. I once expressed some of my thoughts about the baby (like I felt like I didn't like her etc) and the others in the group shamed me. Also, I expressed some of my intrusive thoughts to the therapist and she called child protection services because she was worried about the baby, I thought this was strange and upsetting. She obviously had no idea about PPP. Anyway, it took me several years to feel fully better. Like others have said the acute phase was about 2-3 months but I also suffered a depression following my PPP and I had very little support from my family and none from my husband who didn't like me being ill and chose to ignore it and not help me: so that definitely contributed to my recovery:

  • Thank you so much I'm so glad I was guided to this site and I will keep post of every advice given and hopefully like you said feel normal again

  • I too was around drug addicts and alcoholics which is totally not what a mother needs especially if you have ocd I was thinking oh my gosh what if I became a drug addict lol

  • Hello MichelleO

    You are definitely not alone ...... I'm sorry the intrusive thoughts are worrying you. Hopefully you might find someone who will listen to all your fears and find the right medication. I'm sure your mom will speak up for you if she thinks people are upsetting you when they don't understand.

    Suffering depression can be very draining as you try to lift yourself out of it but with good care and support you will find your feet again.

    Take very good care of yourself ... .. we are all here to lean on.

  • Thank you so much I can't wait till she gets back here to make sure nothing bad happens when and if they change the medicine I'm upset cause latuda was like a miracle worker no other anti psychotic worked for me and now being on my own and having being so scared to seep again because I apparently got up and made the motion in my sleep that I was signing something and this has been happening for awhile now with sitting up for a drink or food and by pcm thinks it could be linked to psychosis which hasn't left my head or it could be sleep diagnosis so I have to go a see a sleep specialist and waiting patiently for my counselor and psychiatry appointment and nervous they'll make the wrong Mrs change. Currently I'm on lamictal, kolonopin, Zoloft, and latuda

  • Hello MichelleO

    I know it's very difficult but try not to worry. Hopefully you won't have to wait too long for your appointments with the sleep specialist and psychiatrist who will be able to reassure you about your medications. It might be an idea to write down any questions you have. I found that when I saw the psychiatrist and his team, I was so anxious that any questions I had went out of my head! The counselling sessions should be of benefit to express all your thoughts and feelings to a complete stranger. I hope you are given time for them to listen and understand.

    Take care of yourself.

  • Hi MichelleO

    I just wanted to echo Lilybeth, please try not to worry and the idea of writing down questions ahead of your appointment is a really good one - I too would have so much I wanted to say at appointments then get too over-whelmed and forget it all, coming out feeling disheartened almost. There seems to be such a lot to do that we build ourselves up to the appointment, so I think it would be beneficial for you to have a plan, and perhaps take someone with you too if you feel that would be helpful for you.

    Changing meds can be anxious time, I know I too felt the same after my PP episode, which was nearly 7 years ago now. But you will get there, try and give yourself time and be kind to yourself. It sounds as if you have great family support in place and when you get the appointments with professionals I hope that you can get further good input too.

    Take care, xx

  • Hello MichelleO

    I've been thinking of ways to support your family through the awful time you're having at the moment until your appointments come through. There's a really good post on here from a few years ago by JonsieB, who is also a volunteer, on behalf of her mom, entitled "A Granny's PP Experience". This might be helpful for your mom to read although you might have already seen it. The link hasn't worked for me but you can search here.

    Also, for your husband there is a book entitled "Husband in a Storm" which you can upload, written by one of the dads on the forum. I'm not too sure about the link but you can also search for it on this page.

    Take it a day at a time for now ........

  • Thank you so much for all the tips and tools!!!! Means a lot to be around people who understand

  • Hello MichelleO

    Just wondering how you have been since your last post. Has your mum arrived to support you? I hope you won't have to wait much longer for your appointments.

    Thinking of you ......... take care.

  • my appointment didn't go so well he wanted to admit me again because of fears not actions so if I have a bad run in with him we'd then I'm switching and I don't see my counselor until the 22nd so I have to wait. My mom was here thank god she's still here but leaving the 20th and then I'll be on my own which I've only done once I have a question would people notice the difference in me if I was going to have an episode or would it be out of nowhere ? And is this least likely to happen in the middle of my sleep?

  • Hello MichelleO

    Thanks for replying. I'm sorry your appointment didn't go well. In answer to your question I think people would notice a difference in you as when we have PP our behaviour is so out of character. When my second PP was on the verge of striking, my husband noticed I was behaving in a similar odd way to my first PP. The G.P was then made aware and the mental health team were alerted. I don't think this would happen in the middle of your sleep but there will be other mums here with their good advice.

    With your mum's help, try to relax as much as you can and distract your thoughts from all your fears. It's just a week now until you see the counsellor so try to hold on and stay calm.

    Take care.

  • Thank you so much I think that's good advice I think it's my ocd that makes me think that way I have a lot of that too

  • Hello MichelleO

    I'm sorry you have OCD to cope with too. Five months postpartum is early days but you will fully recover although some days are better than others.

    There's a link on YouTube "OCD treatment : Understanding Intrusive Thoughts" by CBT Therapist Katie d'Ath.

    . You might have already seen this as it has been recommended here before but, if not, it might be helpful.

    Thinking of you .......

  • Hi MichelleO

    As you mentioned that you have a diagnosis of OCD I too just wanted to let you know about another organisation, in case you haven't heard of it, called Maternal OCD. Their information is here:

    0845 390 6232

    I also just wanted to repost the video that Lilybeth posted as I notice that it says there is an error on it:

    Take care, and I do hope you get the support you need.

  • Hello MichelleO

    I hope you are coping since your mum's visit ended. Not long until you see your counsellor on 22nd so perhaps you will feel better sharing how you have been feeling. It's a good idea to make a note of any questions you might have as sometimes such meetings can make us anxious and like me years ago, you might forget what you wanted to ask or talk about.

    Thinking of you ...... take care.

  • I think I will do that I usually do that's something I deff learned but my main thing is addressing my fears in hopes he will understand and not send me to a psych unit like my psychiatrist already tried to so now I'm nervous to be taken the wrong way tomorrow is my first day alone and very scared and I think my son misses her and maybe even wishes or thinks she's his mom :(

  • I hope your day is going OK? I just wanted to say I remember feeling really scared and overwhelmed being on my own with my son, when my partner was working a long day (12 hours). It did help me to break down the day, I planned a few things to do (simple things - like certain house work, or a very short walk that wouldn't be overwhelming). E.g. up till 12 I'll do the washing up and put the washing on and watch x TV programme. It helped me to feel safe having a plan.

    I was sure my son preferred by partner too, but he's 5 now and he's a real mummy's boy...

    Thinking of you today, you can do it... X

  • That makes me feel better I hope he grows more bonding with me esp cause I don't want to be jealous anymore lol today is well I'm actually at my Counselors now and got here with my baby alone so that feels good

  • Hi Michelle O

    That's a great achievement! I hope the counselling was good.

    I found as my son got older (say nearing one years old) I started to feel less insecure about him not bonding as it became obvious he was! He was able to communicate more and want hugs from me etc.

    Take care xx

  • Hi Michele, my wife recently had Post partnum Pyschosis. She is currently on Latuda and it seems to be working for the most part. Did you like Latuda? What was your diagnosis? Did you have post partnum Pyschosis?

    Thank you for sharing so much!

  • Latuda works great for me I love it I do have psychosis I was hospitalized twice and on a few different anti psychotics and latuda is best now I just have to face my fears that have been left behind. It's nice your reaching out for your wife too so nice job for all her support she'll need it throughout her recovery

  • Hello MichelleO

    That's a great achievement that you went to see your Counsellor on your own with baby in tow ..... a big step in the right direction. I hope you found the session helpful and feel supported.

    Try not to worry about bonding with your baby. Things will fall into place once you are feeling much better. Facing your fears is a big thing to do so just take a day at a time for now. You did really well today and I hope you feel proud .......

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