6 weeks post birth and worried I’m ve... - Action on Postpar...

Action on Postpartum Psychosis
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6 weeks post birth and worried I’m verging on psychosis

Hi all. Not sure if this is the best place to post however, I’m at a real loss at the moment. Prior to explaining my situation I want to say that I am due to see a psychiatrist and have been to my GP.

I am a mum to three with my most recent birth being 6 weeks ago. I have never been diagnosed with PP however, I have a history of obsessive intrusive thoughts around my children being swapped. I’ve had CBT sessions which helped me manage the thoughts. I’ve never been depressed but felt overwhelming/severe anxiety/OCD/derealisation which rendered me bed ridden with my first.

I was well with my second with no relapse. I am now experiencing intrusive thoughts around feeling like I can’t recognise my second child and that he is not my son despite him being my absolute world. In my heart I know this is intrusive/irrational but at times it feels real. I keep wondering if I am high functioning psychotic because I am able to carry on as normal but I am having delusional thoughts.

I know I shouldn’t seek reassurance but I just want to get a heads up on what’s going on with my mind. It’s absolutely exhausting.

Please help a very exhausted and sad mummy! 😥

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Hi MysticMou

Congratulations on the birth of your baby :) This is definitely the right place to come for support and shared experiences, so you are very welcome. It's good that you have an appointment with a Psychiatrist and have seen your GP.

Many years ago, I had PP twice and can well remember how frightening and real the delusions were at the time. You must be exhausted if you are carrying on as normal with so much going on in your head. I wasn't able to carry on when my psychosis hit within days of giving birth to my sons.

Do you have support from a Primary Mental Heath Team? I think they will support you until baby is one year. Have you seen the PP Insider Guides at app-network.org/what-is-pp/... In the guide "Recovery after Postpartum Psychosis" on page 5 there is a section on exhaustion. There are also shared experiences in the link.

I'm sorry you're feeling sad and exhausted at the moment. Thankfully, if you are diagnosed with PP, it is a temporary and very treatable illness although it must be very challenging for you to cope with family routine.

I hope you won't have to wait too long for the appointment with the Psychiatrist. I was treated under mixed general psychiatric care and eventually made a full recovery with medication in tandem with treatment. Perhaps home treatment can be arranged for you which is what I was offered during my second PP, with regular reviews from professionals?

It can't be easy for you but try to rest as much as you can. With good medical care you will feel better in your own time. For now, we are here to listen and support you. Take care.

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Thank you for your reply Lilybeth.

I feel happy and content with life but having these intrusive thoughts makes carrying on with life really difficult. I have no thoughts of suicide or self-harm.

I have seen a CPN who said it sounds very much like OCD and anxiety. My appointment is on the 17th of this month. I have no idea what to expect if it is PP. Can there be milder forms?

Thank you again. X

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Hello MysticMou

Thanks for taking time to reply. I'm sorry if I have worried you that you might have PP when the professional opinion from your CPN is that your symptoms sound very much like OCD and anxiety. I think it is possible as you have never had PP but a history of OCD.

I was very ill, hearing a commanding voice, experiencing delusions and hallucinations. Although I don't think any forum of psychosis can be described as mild, all the mums here have had different experiences and different paths to recovery.

I hope you will be reassured on the 17th and I apologise again if I have worried you on top of all the stress. It's good to hear you feel happy and content and have professional support. I'm sure there will be other mums here to share their more recent experiences with you. Wrap yourself in the comfort blanket of home and take care. xx

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Hi I suffered from intrusive thoughts quite suddenly 5 weeks after the birth of my second child. Here’s what helped:

1. do not research it online. Reading about other people’s intrusive thoughts and ocd is trigger for making yours worse.

2.Combat the thought with another thought that rationalizes and disproves your intrusive thought. Write down a rebuttal to your intrusive thought. Don’t feel guilty! Obsessing over guilt and rethinking only makes it worse.

3. Pray when you need help. Seek religious help it’s free!

4. Seek counseling. I went 3x a week. Also to a postpartum support group.

5. Zoloft!!!!!! My magic drug. I think it helped a lot. Takes a few weeks to kick in.

6. Binge on happy light hearted tv shows and movies

7. Exercise groups fresh air lots of sleep good food. Take care of yourself physically. Have hubby or grandma or hired help for the kids. Take time for yourself.

8. Have hope. The bulk of it went away after 2 months for me. It was the darkest most difficult time in my life. But it goes away.

9. Sending you love and support. It’s hard but it will pass.

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Hi MysticMou

I'm sorry you've been struggling with OCD and anxiety. I really hope that your appointment on the 17th will be helpful for you. Your intrusive thoughts sound really horrible, I'm not surprised you're feeling exhausted and sad. I hope you can get the support you need.

I had postpartum psychosis in 2011 after the birth of my son. For me, I was very acutely unwell very suddenly just 3 days after my son was born and was completely out of touch with reality, with quite extreme beliefs and delusions and not able to function at all which sounds quite different from what you're experiencing?

I wondered if you have found the organisation Maternal OCD at all? You may find it helpful to look at their website, and to see if what they describe is what you're experiencing, and you may be able to find others who have been through what you're going through? maternalocd.org/

Take care, and I really hope you will feel better soon and get the support you need.

Ellie X

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