2nd baby no PP

Hi everyone

i havent posted in a long time. You may have read my previous posts on my 2nd pregancy and my story of my experience of PP following the birth of my first child.

After all the stress and worry i thankfully did not get PP this time round. I had a careplan in place and lots of monitoring and support from health proffesionals and my family.

I gave birth to my second child in March this year. I stayed in hospital on the labour ward for around 4 to 5 days and had plenty of sleep thanks to meds and family members helping with night feeds. When i went home we all knew the main factor was my sleep. As the weeks went by and still all good signs we all grew more confident but still very weary of course. When baby was around 12 weeks old my CPN (care co ordinator) told me that she was very pleased i didnt fall ill again but did say its still early days. As i was always asking have i made it yet?. I have been told that i will be on medication and kept an eye on up untill the baby is a year and then a review will be made i expect. There are no words to describe how happy iam that i didnt fall ill or most importantly i was not seperated from my new born. Time has flown by and my baby is now 8 months old. I am so proud of my partner for all the support he gave me. And my good ol mum.

My eldest child is fast approaching 3rd birthday. Wow 3 years since PP. Unfortunately i cannot say iam over it. It still verh much haunts me. Even though my second child wasnt planned but a pleasent surprise, having another did not fill that gap. I mean it was a delight to have a newborn for what felt like longer but i did have a cry when holding baby in my arms as i couldnt help but think of my first born. I still find myself thinking about the whole pp experience. Going over it all to my manic behaviour, to hospitals, family visiting me, in the mother and baby unit. Some cant understand why i cant move on but i suppose you can never truley understand something unless you have been there.

If you are thinking about having more children or are pregnant please feel free to message me. Id be more than happy to answer any questions. Read my previous posts as i did mention my care plan. And my strategies for not worrying etc. Even though i knew i had risks im so pleased i have had another child. Im still scared of becoming unwell again and knowing that i got so unwell i understand im more vulnerable. You must stay positive and take care of you. When im having a bad day or dwelling of what happened, seeing my children smile and laugh get me through, they keep me going.

ive also decided id really like to work with people with mental health, other mothers. Ive been trying to do some re search. Id like to work on wards phyciatric or mother and baby. Im guessing you have to have some sort of qualification. Or could i volunteer, obviously working on a ward you would need level of expertise and training. Had anyone eles gone on to do this?

I wish i posted sooner but as you can imagine very busy with a soon to be 3 year old and baby. But i hope this gives someone a little hope or faith that you may not experience PP a second time.

wish you all good health and happy thoughts x

11 Replies

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  • Hi VioletX

    Thanks so much for posting your update. It's so fantastic to hear you've stayed well with your second child. That's so inspirational, and hopeful, for anyone on here who are considering have other children. I've only had one child, he is five now, so it is five years since PP. I really relate to everything you wrote about still being traumatised from the experience somehow, that memories are still very strong, and upsetting at times. I can also imagine that having a second child, and staying well, could bring up a lot of sadness of what you missed with your first.

    I spend quite a lot of time reflecting on PP, including my own PP experience, by going on this forum, and now doing the role that I do with APP (Peer support coordinator). I see it as one of the most important profound life changing experiences of my life. I have to say APP is probably the main thing that has helped me to transform the whole experience into something positive, I think that's what this amazing forum has done for me (and I hope others), by supporting each other, and turning our traumatic experience and then recovery into hope for others I've found can be really healing.

    I have to say my spirituality has helped me too.I have always had a strong personal faith somehow, and recently I've read quite a few Buddhist books recently, and I do pray/meditate and I think that's really helped me to see the positive in the whole experience. There is an amazing quote by the Buddhist monk Tich Naht Hanh that I read that I think sums up for me my experience of PP from maybe a 'spiritual' perspective:

    "Flowers and garbage are both organic in nature. So looking deeply into the nature of a flower, you can see the presence of the compost and the garbage. The flower is going to turn into garbage, but don't be afraid! You don't throw anything away, because you are not afraid of garbage. You are a gardener, your hands are capable of transforming it into flowers, into fruit, or into vegetables.

    The same thing is true of your happiness and your sorrow. Sorrow, fear, and depression are all kinds of garbage. These bits of garbage are part of real life, and we must look deeply into their nature. You can practice in order to turn these bits of garbage into flowers. So you should not throw anything out. All you have to do is learn how to transform your garbage into flowers".

    It's like your desire to work in a psychiatric hospital or MBU... I do know some employ peer support workers. Perhaps you could look into that?? I think you would be amazing. I think people with lived experience have amazing wisdom, insight, compassion... we have a huge amount to offer.

    Anyway sorry for the waffle - do take it or leave it!!

  • Thank you for your reply. Thats so interesting i will read into buddhism. What a clever and brilliant piece that really does put more of a positive and tells us how we can throw out the garbage and begin to bloom.

    I thought by now it would feel easier as nearly 3 years have passed but when i have the thoughts come back to mind of the trauma i still have that rawr feeling at the pitt of my stomach. I honestly dont think i will ever get over it. But will have to learn to accept that it is something that can happen to a new mother and i was one of them. Maybe we are chosen because whoever it is watching down on us knew we are strong.

    exactly why i would love to work with mums especially who have been through PP. I do feel very compassionate. I agree with you we have alot to offer. When pp happened i then after was always asking my care co ordinator, my phychatrist and phycologist who i had therapie sessions with; i had so many unanswered questions, of course they had no idea as they didnt go through it. If someone sat me down and said to me yes it happened to me 7 years ago, i know what your going through and im here to answer any questions you may have and if youd like me to tell you my experience then i can do that to. I probably would of felt alot more comforted. Ok a employ peer support woker i will read into that. No never waffel. Was really helpful.

    keep up the great work

    thanks ellie x

  • Also there was one more thing i missed out. When i had my first child, before the illness escalated i was given a number of leaflets from my midwife something they do along with your post natal notes etc. I was given leaflets on baby blues and post natal depression. Something we hear about alot more. And not one on Post partum Phycosis. I remember reading all the infortmation she had given me and i cant help but wonder what if i had read about the signs etc of pp.

    when i had my baby in march this year again given similar leaflets. Not one on PP!! I was so angry and frustrated. PP is something that happens Post birth all mums to be should be educated on this. Ive been meaning to write in as a complaint really. I cant help but feel frustrated at the midwives too as i was put under the same team from ny first pregnancy. This is definatley a huge gap missing. I know its not as common as baby blues etc but should be just as important to flag up. Anyway thats that rant over im sure everyone would agree on. Take care

  • Hi Violetx

    Thanks for the replies... I'd agree... the lack of information to potential parents is so frustrating. PP is as common as down syndrome and that is something that is routinely mentioned (and tested) whereas we hardly mention pp at all. You know that there is a page on our website listing 'early symptoms' - app-network.org/early-sympt...

    if you wanted to give midwives etc a print out and tell them need to put something like that information out there to all mums (and their families) who are expecting a baby...!!

    in an ideal world we would want that to be routinely given, just like the leaflets about postnatal depression. I agree it could really help. I also think health professionals need to have more awareness too, of what the early symptoms are. I think a lot of professionals haven't even heard of PP, or don't know what it is!

    I can't remember if you are in the UK? I have a feeling you're not? if you are and would be interested in being a volunteer peer supporter with us, do let me know, as we're always looking for new peer supporters! It sounds like something you'd be interested in and would enjoy?

    Take care X

  • Hi ellie iam in the UK id definatley be interested in being a new peer support worker. Im sure its something id love to commit to.

    I do believe that there is a huge gap that needs to be filled in connection with midwifes and women with mental health needs. And when i was in recovery. I suppose theres so much room for improvement we could say.

    Violet xx

  • Hi Violetx

    Thanks so much for sharing this, I loved hearing that you had a good experience this time, it gives me hope for if I ever decide to try again.

    I can completely relate to not being able to move on from your first experience, mine is coming up to 3 years ago too and I still think about it often. I also feel like I'll never get over it, the memories will hopefully fade in time but it was a life changing experience and extremely traumatic so I don't think we'll ever forget.

    I too would love to help other mums through it, I would have loved to have heard from someone who had been through it and know that I actually would recover.

    Thanks again for sharing, I'm really really happy that you stayed well. Enjoy your bubba xo

  • Hi Maxi

    Im so pleased ive given you hope and confidence that it doesnt mean you may become unwel again. I just had to tell myself and accept that it is possible but with the right support very unlikely.

    Even though 3 years to someone seems a long time. But to us the feelings and memories are still very overwhelming!

    Me too. I really wish there was more awareness and events available to everyone. I havent met anyone in person who has shared the same experience as us. But this forum is the closest i have got so far. Im so glad i found it.

    The mental health that iam under is Oxleas and i went on the website and they have this Volunteer to work scheme. Which iam definatley going to look into and follow up with my care co ordinator.

    Just know when them unwanted thoughts pop up. That you can come here to talk anytime.

    Take care maxi xx

  • Lovely to hear. How did your labour go...did you have medicine during this. Were you able to breast feed?

  • Hi Suzannah

    My labour was very similar to my first one. This time alot quicker. Both times i got in the birthing pool as i prefered that than sitting on the bed becaus of the pressure. I used gas and air.

    During the pregnancy i was on queitipin and continued this afterwards. I was re assured that it was safe to breastfeed. Although i chose not to do this. Solely because i knew this time round that sleep was very important and so after i had the baby my partner and mum done the night feeds and for the first few weeks i occasionally took sleeping tablets.

    I hope this answered everything. Please feel free to ask anymore id be more than happy to :)

    take care xx

  • Thank you good to know.yes birthing pool sounds like a good idea

  • Hi violetx,

    Belated congratulations and lovely to hear your story of remaining well after your 2nd. I too have had this experience and whilst it will never replace what happened and the hell of PP after my 1st, it can be part of a healing process I believe. It's great to hear that you are interested in helping others too and see you have been in touch with Ellie about this. I hope things continue to go well for you , and as you say, those smiles of our little ones can go such a long way in helping us through the tough days! Take care, all the best, xx

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