Talk to expecting mums on my experien... - Action on Postpar...

Action on Postpartum Psychosis
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Talk to expecting mums on my experience of PP

Jen84h
Jen84hVolunteer

Hey guys, I’ve had PP twice, my boys are 2 and 1 years old so not all that long ago. I was very lucky that I recovered fairly quickly, I had never heard of PP before my illness.

Ive been ask to share my experience with some expecting mums. I’m very aware that I need to not try and scare the mums but just make them aware of the illness and where to seek help if needed. Is there anything you would advise if anyone’s done anything similar?

6 Replies
oldestnewest

Hi jen84h

Haven’t done anything similar to this but as a GP I would encourage them to be honest about any feelings of low mood/not coping with everyone they can but especially their GP at their 6 week check.

Jen84h
Jen84hVolunteer in reply to krodwell

Thankyou that’s a good idea. Unfortunately for me anyway, it was 3 months after birth on both occasions and came from no where. lack of sleep being the only prior symptom and I became very unwell very quickly, within hours.

Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Jen84h

Welcome to the forum and thank you for your post. Firstly, congratulations on recovering so quickly from PP :) You might have read on the forum that I had PP twice, six years apart, but my recovery took much longer, although I did get there in the end, as we all do.

I think it's a good idea for expectant mums to be aware of PP as I also didn't have a clue until it hit me the first time! Perhaps you could refer to the PP Guides "Recovery after Postpartum Psychosis" so that the mums would be reassured that it is a very treatable and temporary illness with links for support. The link being app-network.org/what-is-pp/.... There is also a guide for partners.

I haven't had much experience of talking openly to more than a few team members here during meetings, as I do have social anxiety which I try to handle. I think you will find other mums here who have bravely spoken openly about their experiences. Please take care of yourself as it will probably be an emotional day to be very proud of how far you have come! xx

Jen84h
Jen84hVolunteer in reply to Lilybeth

Thankyou that’s a really good idea to talk about the recovery, thankyou. For me I trying to turn this horrible illness into something positive and for me Helping others going through this cruel illness hugely rewarding and actually helps me to.

I was very lucky in that I knew someone that had gone through this when I was in hospital, all be it at the start just by name , that I could chat to when I was in hospital on those horrible days when you felt like there was no hope of you getting better.

I’ve have done a couple of things before including chatting to a lady face to face who was recoverying from PP organised by the team that saw me at my worst and had a health professional there as well whilst we chatted. I was exhausted after it and some bits were really very very tough indeed. But, she said one comment to me that I will never forget. She said to me she doesn’t have to be alone anymore. She is from another country and although having the health professionals their there’s nothing like having someone who’s been through it to chat to you.

Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer in reply to Jen84h

Hello Jen84hIt

It must have been helpful to have had someone to chat to who had gone through PP when you were in hospital, especially as you say, on those days of feeling helpless and hopeless. It was quite difficult for me as my episodes were so long ago and 'it' wasn't mentioned inside or outside the home for fear of being judged. I have since read my medical notes and didn't recognise myself!

That's why I was so relieved when I found APP .... I wasn't alone and there were so many lovely mums here who shared their experiences and offered support. It is a privilege to 'talk' to mums and families from all corners of the world on the forum. I think it's important to look after yourself as although you have recovered very quickly, recalling such a trauma can be very hard. Take care.

Sally_at_APP
Sally_at_APPAdministrator

Hi Jen84h,

It is great to hear you are doing so well after PP and also great that you are turning this horrible illness into something positive. Please do take care of yourself though, as telling your story can be quite emotional and traumatic, but it sounds like you know that already.

Talking to expectant Mums can be difficult as you have said, as you don't want to scare them. I think it is important for women to know about the things that can happen after childbirth, including PP. Perhaps you can talk about some of the symptoms and early signs to look out for and that it is a temporary illness and that women do get better with the right treatment and support. And as Krodwell has already said, for them to look out for any changes in their feelings and mood and to not be scared to talk to someone about these. You could also talk about the help and support in your area and signpost them to the APP website if they need it (app-network.org/).

APP offer advice and support to you if you want to tell your story to health professionals and to others, and if you want to support other women going through PP. So please let me know if you would like any more support. You can direct message me and we can go from there.

It is great that you want to help others, as you said, knowing someone that has been through a similar experience as you can be so helpful in recovery.

Take care and do be in touch if you need anything,

Kind regards,

Sally x

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