Does anyone get flashbacks - Action on Postpar...

Action on Postpartum Psychosis
2,402 members1,670 posts

Does anyone get flashbacks

Becciandbump
Becciandbump
18 Replies

I didn’t have postpartum psychosis but have had psychosis due to my bipolar in the past I returned to work after mat leave and have found that all my care under the perinatal team just monitoring for my pnd has made me focus on my mental health all the time I feel anxious quite a lot and last night had an awful nightmare that I was sectioned I feel quite well really at the moment apart from anxiety but I sometimes wonder if I suffer from a bit of ptsd from my hospital admissions when I was in my 20s and that being pregnant and being told I could get ppp has triggered it

18 Replies
oldestnewest
Pikorua
PikoruaVolunteer

Hi Becci,

some interesting thought processes, I can relate to.

Because of PPP in 2010 I now know that I have been Bipolar all my life,

in fact since PMS when hormones kicked in as a Teenager.

Now it all makes sense.

It would be interesting to get to know other ladies, and identify

where they find themselves on the spectrum scale.

Mine is rapid cycling and can be rather exhausting.

Anyhow, need to focus on my son. I am more than happy to connect with you on private messaging.

Look after yourself,

x

2 likes
Reply
AuroraDis

Hi Becci,

I definitely empathise with the monitoring causing anxiety.

I have bipolar disorder and was sectioned in my early 20s. I've been well since and 7 years later have been referred for conception counselling and feel exactly as you do. What should be an exciting time as become extremely anxiety provoking and although totally well at the minute have had dreams about being unwell and feel as you do that the constant monitoring and risk management may make me more likely rather than less likely to relapse after the birth.

Even reading my assessment report from the perinatal team had me in tears remembering things from my hospital experience Ive tried so hard to forget over the years.

I suppose being so self aware about these things could also be seen as a protective factor?

X

1 like
Reply
Becciandbump

I really liked my psychiatrist but my first appointment with a psychiatrist who I didn’t know they wrote a 4 page letter detailing all my mental health history and at 10 weeks pregnant I found myself reading it and reliving all my admissions it triggered so many bad memories and I then asked if I could see the psychiatrist I knew so he didn’t have to ask me about my past and they did and it was much better but I found my whole pregnancy I was worrying about my past instead of focusing on the present however they kept me well and were incredibly supportive if you are feeling it’s making you anxious maybe tell them then you won’t have to worry about it as much as I did. If it’s any reassurance I didn’t get ppp in either pregnancy despite being bipolar so maybe putting up with some painful memories was worth the fact that I stayed relatively well

1 like
Reply
Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Becci

Good to hear from you though I'm sorry that you have had disturbed sleep recently. I think having psychosis is very traumatic as it's a very frightening experience when you can't control or understand what's happening.

Returning to work is a big step and can sometimes feel overwhelming and increase anxiety. I think as mums who have suffered psychosis or other mental health issues we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to be as good as others in the workplace, even though we might also be coping with the effects of medication.

It's good that you feel well apart from anxiety but anxiety in itself can be a big hurdle to overcome. I was always anxious and to a point, I still am, but it's manageable. I think flashbacks tend to pop up when least expected, especially in the early years after such trauma. Years later I am aware of triggers so I take a step back when needed.

Perhaps you could ask your GP or care team about the possibility that you might have a bit of ptsd, at your next review? You have battled bipolar and lately psychosis so, like many of us, you have been through the mill. I think you need to take extra special care and give yourself time to heal. It might also be an idea to ask your GP about talking therapy so that you can vocalise your thoughts and feelings in a safe space, much like the forum but with input from a professional :)

We are all here to listen ..... take care.

3 likes
Reply
Becciandbump

I’ve just finished a course of counselling and it’s been really helpful I think that things will settle back down. Both girls got chickenpox during my first three weeks back at work so managing my return to work as well as sick kids has probably just set my anxiety off

1 like
Reply
Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Becci

Thanks so much for your update. It's good that the counselling has been really helpful and hopefully things will settle down for you. I think you're a star coping with chickenpox x 2 and returning to work :) Take care.

1 like
Reply
Pikorua
PikoruaVolunteer

Good morning Becciandbump,

it is always good to hear from you. I am so happy that the counselling is giving you coping strategies.

Yep I remember my son with chicken pox and preventing him from continuously itching his skin.

Take it steady and I hope your return to work will run smoothly.

Sending you a virtual hug,

x

1 like
Reply
Becciandbump

Update the kids are all better and I’m back at work tomorrow went for a spa day with my best friend today and am feeling a bit more refreshed x

Reply
Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer

Hi Becci

How lovely to have a spa day with your best friend which has helped you to feel a bit more refreshed. ..... a great treat for you after coping with your girls and their recent chickenpox :) I hope work goes well tomorrow. x

1 like
Reply
Becciandbump

Thankyou! I’ll be glad for some normality tomorrow instead of being cooped up in the house although I’m really tired but I think it will be good to get back to normal I must admit days at work sometimes feel easier than being at home it’s a change of scenery x

1 like
Reply
Becciandbump

I am also worried my psychiatrist must think I’m mad I rang them in a panic saying I’d hardly had any sleep for 2 days and was worried I would relapse but I feel silly now because as soon as I good a good nights sleep I feel rational again and back to normal maybe it’s just the fear of being poorly that I find terrifying when in reality I’m sort of doing okay

Reply
Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer

I think it's a relief when you know your girls are better and you can get back into some sort of routine. It's good to have a change of scenery and a bit of social interaction at work too. Don't forget to have a tea or coffee break! x

Reply
Lilybeth
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Becci

I think your psychiatrist will completely understand how worried you must have been when you rang, worried about a relapse. I hope you had a good sleep. Take care.

Reply
Pikorua
PikoruaVolunteer

Good morning Becci. Hope the start to the week will go well for you.

I am pleased the children have recovered. We are very sensitive mums and do worry about our children. It is a relief when they are back to their usual routine.

Please, do not worry about contacting your Psychiatrist for help. There were many occasions where I had to call for my care coordinator.

My recovery process went on and on, but that is purely because of the loss of 2 loved family members after my Psychosis and the none-diagnosis of bi-polar.

Mums who have had PPP only and no other mental health challenges before PPP or afterwards, they usually recover, but it is without a doubt in my opinion that your approach to life will have changed, because of such a traumatising illness.

Mums on here are amazing and we are such a compassionate and sensitive bunch.

I enjoy life at a different level, because suffering is quite an eye opener and you just want to make sure you can share lived experience through kindness!

Take care

x

3 likes
Reply
Becciandbump

This is good advice my psychosis from my bipolar has changed me for quite a few years I lived in fear of my illness with many admissions I’m very stable in the grand scheme of things now but it does sort of become hard to forget sometimes like there’s a fear you could end up like that again I had quite a lot of trauma from it and I think that can take a while to process. I enjoy life and love the kids to pieces but it does play on my mind more than I’d like x

Reply
Pikorua
PikoruaVolunteer
in reply to Becciandbump

All in stepping stones, look after yourself. x

1 like
Reply
Iconoclast

I have dreams in which I am psychotic from time to time. It's very disturbing because it feels real and I wonder how my brain can possibly recreate the experience.

Reply
Becciandbump

I probably dream about it once a year and you’re right it’s awful as it feels real

Reply

You may also like...