Would they Hospitalise Me?: I had... - Action on Postpar...

Action on Postpartum Psychosis

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Would they Hospitalise Me?

Amethyst1711 profile image

I had postpartum psychosis when my previous baby was 7 months old. I had my third baby 3 weeks ago, and have had 3 hallucinations at separate occasions and the odd moments of confusion/forgetfulness. My perinatal nurse was concerned as these were my early symptoms last time but said equally it could just be sleep deprivation.

Last time I could hear a noise in my head which sounded like 2 different tones of ringing, and last night I could hear that again.

Last time I thought my brain was breaking up into bricks and the devil had inhabited my brain. I could physically feel it breaking up.

My brain feels brittle again and I can’t shake the feeling that it’s made of glass. But I’m worried that it might be a soft material that if someone put their hand through it, it might break. Writing this down I know it sounds nuts.

Does this sound like the pp has returned if I know how nuts this sounds, and it’s just a feeling?

I called the out of hours team when I started getting more forgetful moments and the noise in my head and they will get someone to call me tomorrow. But if I tell them what I’ve written here, will they automatically hospitalise me?

I have 2 boys who are 6 and 4, my little girl is amazing chilled and I have adapted really well to life with 3. I am so scared of being hospitalised and to have to leave home again, and how that would affect my boys.

34 Replies

Hi Amethyst1711

Sorry to hear you are suffering symptoms again. I truly can’t answer your question about hospitalisation, but would still suggest you tell them what’s going on. It may be they need to give you medication that can nip it in the bud. They may involve a community based team to check on you daily, but what ever they do it is better than struggling through PP alone.

I understand not wanting to be hospitalised as the separation can be traumatic, so tell them that. You seem lucid enough to write this post which suggests that if it is PP it’s the early stages and early intervention may result in a less invasive outcome.

We’re all here for support should you need us, and you can ask any questions you feel you need answered. Thought If you are already questioning if it’s starting again I strongly suggest you speak out and get the help you may need early.

Congratulations on the birth of your new baby, and I wish you a speedy recovery, whatever you choose to do.

Hi Amethyst1711,

Thank you for reaching out to us in what seems an incredibly scary time for you. I would really encourage you to speak to your health professionals, I know this can be really scary and overwhelming but they are all there to support you and keep you and your baby safe.

Where you admitted to a mother and baby unit when you had PP previously?

An MBU really is the best place for you and your baby to be when you are ill. I know it seems intimidating but again all the staff are there to help you get better and support you in caring and bonding with your baby.

I know you might be worried about leaving your other children and the effect it may have on them, but I'm sure they just want their mum to be better.

As shellshockedhubby says the earlier you get the support the quicker recovery can begin and you can be back with your family, if you are admitted to an MBU.

Please know you will get through this!

Thinking of you.

Jocelyn xx

Hi,

What you've written down isn't nuts at all. It's you being honest about how you're feeling and that shows amazing strength.

I completely sympathise as I had similar symptoms after the birth of both my boys who are now 5 and 10 months.

You've done the right thing by calling the out of hours and even though you're worried about them sending you to hospital, I think the first thing they will do is listen to you and see if they can do anything to help. I had the same worry and was in a mother and baby unit with both boys after they were born. It was hard being away from my eldest the second time I was admitted but I knew I was in the best place to recover.

Whatever happens, you've got support on here and you've asked for help. That just shows what an amazing mum you are to all your children. They are incredibly lucky to have you x

Hello sweet,I’m so sorry you’re having these horrible symptoms. It doesn’t necessarily mean it’s coming back, it could just be some symptoms. I had a week of symptoms recently, but didn’t turn into psychosis.

I know it’s a horrible thought to be hospitalised, but if it’s for the best then that’s the best place for you to get better xx

I stayed at home for a month unmedicated because I was terrified of hospitalisation, but I traumatised my family. Particularly my then three year old. She is great now, but does have some anxiety still at times. Looking back I wish I had taken my self away from the home and realised that the help wasn’t as scary as I thought and it doesn’t automatically mean being sectioned. Something more gentle like a MBU.

If you need to go to an mbu you can tell them you’re poorly and need to stay in hospital for a while, like you would if you were physically ill. Letting them having a more normal day to day with the well parent is surely better than staying home if the person becomes really sick and the kids having to live in that environment. this is how I feel about how my situation would have benefitted anyway xx

Obviously it is scary for you to be separated too, no one wants to be away from their family for a while, but it would be short term and having a well mummy with the right care is what you all deserve.

Keep us updated, you will get through this xx

Thanks so much for the replies, it’s good not to feel so alone. My Mum has been over while my husband was out at work, and taken the other two kids to/from school and helped with the baby, so I’ve managed to get a lot more sleep and felt much clearer. It’s harder to think now it’s later in the day and the older kids are in though. I’ve not yet heard from the team but my perinatal nurse doesn’t work Mondays so I will give her a call tomorrow. I’m already on Olanzapine but have an optional smaller dose to take if I can feel symptoms coming on, so I’ve been taking that. I was in the MBU for 2 months last time. They were amazing and I’m not so worried about being in there, more for what would happen to everyone else. My Mum has already said today that if they did admit me that she would struggle with looking after the other 2 while my husband was at work. She’s not in the best of health so it’s a big worry. Xxx

Hello Amethyst1711,I’m so glad you felt able to write here yesterday and explain what you were experiencing. I’m so sorry that’s it’s been a tough few days for you. What you’re describing must feel scary, especially if it reminds you of what happened before. I’ve been thinking of you.

I’m glad your mum was able to come and be with you today and help out. That’s good to have her there. I’m glad you were able to get a bit more sleep today.

Sorry to hear that you didn’t hear from the team supporting you. But do definitely ring your nurse tomorrow to talk with them. And in the meantime, don’t hesitate to phone the crisis team in the night, or go to hospital if you’re feeling worried.

I know first hand how scary it can feel, we really do understand us Mums who’ve had PP ourselves. But, like you, having recovered from PP before - I know that the health people doctors, nurses, metal health team etc are all there to support and help you get better. So do trust that they’re on your side and will help you get through this time. Try not to worry too much about MBUs, or treatment, just see what your team say, and take it from there.

Sending huge hugs from one Mummy to another. Take care.

Rachel x

EmiMum profile image
EmiMumVolunteer

Hi Amethyst1711,

I am glad to hear your mum came over yesterday and you managed some rest for a bit. Were you able to sleep last night too? Sleep makes no end of difference to my mood. Its also good to hear that you started the top up medication, as adviced.

As Rachel says, please do not worry about the logistics, the most important thing at the moment is to talk to your CPN and be as honest with her as you have been on this forum, they will take it from there. The sooner you reach out for professional help, the better it will be.

Take good care, I am sending you big hugs, will be thinking of you

Hello love, I’m so glad you managed to get some sleep. Don’t fret about childcare! We were offered a nanny and a cleaner on the NHS when I was sick with psychosis. Speak to the doctor/ crisis team about it. They could help you with your children. My doctor hadn’t heard of the service, but the psychiatrist from the crisis team informed us xx

Thanks so much for the replies, it means a lot to hear from others who understand, especially with pp being rare. Last night was a better night so that was a relief, I seem clearer headed today apart from some points where there was a bit more going on and then it felt a lot to take in. My Mum also came over this morning so I was able to get a sleep in, and she’ll do the same tomorrow. I spoke to my perinatal nurse who said that this could be the early stages of pp again and if so we need to nip it in the bud, so she contacted the on call psychiatrist who has doubled my extra olanzapine for tonight and she’ll speak to my psychiatrist in the morning (she was out today). Just praying that this does work Xxx

EmiMum profile image
EmiMumVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711,

How are you feeling today? I hope you have managed to sleep the past few days and have been able to get in touch with your psychiatrist.

I am glad your mum has been helping so you have caught a bit of rest.

Take really good care, I am glad writing here is helping a bit, please do know that you are not alone

Hi Amethyst1711

I'm so glad you've been able to reach out here and find support from other mums who really understand.

I experienced the beginning of symptoms with my second daughter in 2011 after having PP with my first in 2005. I know how scary it can be to wonder if you're slipping again, and I know it takes courage to say how you're feeling to professionals. Well done for everything you have done so far! It's great your mum can help to support your sleep and it sounds really sensible that you have increased your olanzapine.

I had initial with the crisis team like you have (who I think tended to underestimate the risks of me getting more poorly) then the perinatal team who were brilliant.

I hope things are continuing to progress well for you, and you are able to get the rest and sleep you need. I wanted to reassure you that although I did need to go to hospital a few months down the line, we did manage to cope ok, and visits with my older daughter were special times. There was sadness when we had to leave each other, but keeping open to allowing her to talk about that time as she's got older has really helped.

Do you have a few good friends around who could swing in to help your mum & husband? We were honestly overwhelmed by how much mums from school helped out and people cooked meals for my husband for the freezer.

Thinking of you and really glad that you are here on the forum for support.

Naomi x

I’ve been feeling much clearer the last couple of days, although still a little muddled right now. I managed to get a 4 hour nap in yesterday though! My perinatal nurse came to see me today and they’re keeping in contact with me on a daily basis. I seem to be having the odd hallucination and am still trying to work out what is happening with the glass. That’s good to hear your daughter coped OK Naomi, my older son had only just turned 3 when I was admitted last time and doesn’t remember it. The boys are 6 and 4 now so would be aware and remember what was happening. My nurse has reassured me that they’ll try and avoid me being admitted where possible. My Mum was saying yesterday that she doesn’t know how she’ll cope if I’m admitted. Thankfully we have a lot of friends in our Church and they’ve been bringing us a meal every other day since she was born which has been amazing. So if it comes to it they can help out too xxx

I’m really getting quite scared now. I think the cogs have stopped. I can’t think. I don’t know how much of it is the glass. My cat has a bright pink belly and my son and husband are saying she doesn’t. It’s like it’s glowing. Yesterday my baby had a bright pink face like her baby blanket. My Mum had said she won’t cope if I go in hospital so I feel like I can’t tell anyone because of the repercussions on my family but my head has gone very wrong.

Hi Amethyst1711, my name's Jenny. I know it must feel really frightening for you right now but please be really open and honest with your team about the thoughts you're having. I understand you're worried about your family but it's really important to get support so you can feel better. It's good you've told your husband and hopefully he knows who to contact if you feel you need to talk to someone tonight. Keep reaching out and stay safe, it'll be ok xx

Hello Amethyst1711. It’s Rachel here.

Im so sorry you’re struggling what you’ve described must be scary for you.

Can you phone a friend or relative? I know you said your Mum is feeling like she won’t cope - try not to worry about her. She won’t want you to be poorly or struggling so I’m sure she’ll want you to talk and get help.

It’s really important you get some help. Can you phone the crisis phone number? Or 111? Or go to A&E? It really sounds like you might need more support.

Sending huge hugs. I really do understand. I’ve been where you are. Be really honest, ask for help. It’ll be ok. What you’re experiencing is temporary.

Rachel xxx

Hi lovely

Just echoing what Jenny and Rachel have said. It will be ok, you're the most vulnerable person right now and unfortunately when we are unwell those around us do just have to "cope" and honestly, your mum will be ok. She may be scared too, but it's not your job right now to protect her. It's ok for you to be unwell, it's not your fault.

We have trained peer support volunteers who are grandmas themselves so we can be here to support your mum so you're not shouldering that burden.

As Rachel says, keep reaching out - if you can sense things are getting worse make sure you or your family call the crisis team, 111 or A&E.

We're all here for you. It's ok to be unwell, let yourself be the priority xxx

Naomi

Thanks both of you for understanding. I told my husband and called the out of hours number I have. They’ve told me to take my medication and get some sleep, and they’re sending a message to my nurse and psych for tomorrow morning. I’m afraid to sleep though in case the cogs go rusty xxx

Well done for telling your husband and reaching out, I know it’s not easy. I hope you can manage to get some sleep xx

Hope you got a bit of rest dear Amrthyst1711… well done for asking for help.

I hope things go well with the perinatal team at home today. We are all rooting for you. Take care of yourself first & foremost.

Naomi x

Hi dear Amethyst1711

Just checking in to say I’m thinking of you, and I hope you felt heard and supported by the perinatal team yesterday.

Take good care of yourself

Warmly

Naomi x

Thanks all of you. I felt clearer by morning and spoke to the perinatal psychiatrist yesterday. She thinks my body is giving me warning signs, but doesn’t think it’ll turn into a full blown episode which is reassuring. However she has made sure out of hours support is available if I need it. She’s said to try and keep a low stimulus environment by keeping things calm and not doing too much (as much as you can with 3 kids!)

She understands that I’m reluctant to go to the mbu because of family and said as long as I’m not getting depression/mania and there are no safety concerns I can stay home. Xxx

Hi Amethyst1711

It's good to hear that you have spoken to the perinatal psychiatrist and have some out of hours support available during this vulnerable period. You are doing so well, I know how scary these first few weeks after birth can be when you've experienced PP before.

Like you say, I guess it's monitoring whether you can actually keep a 'low stimulus' environment with three young children! I'm glad you have those open lines of communication with your husband and your perinatal team to keep an eye on any signs of depression/mania or sudden changes.

Thanks so much for taking the time to write and let us know how you are getting on. Take good care of yourself.

Naomi x

Lilybeth profile image
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711

I hope you are managing to find a calm space even with three treasured children. It’s good that you have been reassured by the psychiatrist and have out of hours support in place.

Years ago when I had my second PP, my first son was six years old. Although I was initially hospitalised, I retuned home and received ongoing support from the NHS Home Care Team. The psychiatrist visited regularly, a CPN and other professionals. There were times of crisis when I was hospitalised but eventually I did make a full recovery.

We are all mothers of courage .... stay safe and lean on the support around you.

Lilybeth profile image
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711

I forgot to add how sorry I am that you are so fragile at the moment. I hope today has been ok for you. We are all here to listen. Take care.

Thanks Naomi and Lilybeth. I think things are improving gradually. I seem to be OK until too many things happen at once or I have to make a decision. My Husband or Mum has been around constantly so that’s been a big help, I’ve been managing to get naps in. I get the odd hallucination but haven’t had anything in the past 2 days which is encouraging. My mind did lock up again yesterday afternoon but I took my additional medication and my husband sent me to bed, it improved after that xxx

Evening Amethyst1711,You’re being so brave, well done for being so honest, I’m really glad you’ve the support of your family and professionals around you.

Keep talking to them all, it sounds like you’re really trying to take care of yourself by taking your medication and trying to get lots of rest. I’m so glad your family are there supporting you. When I was poorly, my mum was with me every day at home when I came home from hospital. I would have been lost without her.

Take such good care of yourself lovely, Thinking of you.

Rachel x

Lilybeth profile image
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711

It’s good that you think things are improving gradually. I’m glad you have the support of your husband and mum to know when you need to rest and have a nap. Try not to expect too much of yourself and lean on their loving support as well as your care team.

Take your time and be kind to yourself. Thanks so much for writing. xxx

Hi Amethyst1711

Thank you so much for taking the time to write a couple of days ago. It's really good to hear that it feels like your symptoms are easing rather than escalating, and that your family are so supportive in giving you time to rest and retreat from situations where your mind gets a bit overloaded.

We are rooting for you - so glad you are being gentle with yourself and making space for your mind to settle.

Warm wishes

Naomi x

Thanks everyone. I think I’ve turned a corner - I’ve had no hallucinations since last Friday, and my head is much clearer. I even went into work yesterday to show them the baby, I made sure I didn’t stay too long and my brain wasn’t too scrambled afterwards. However, my Dad has just caught covid so my Mum can’t come over at the moment, so I don’t have that support at the moment. My aunt is round today though so that’s good. I’ve had my son’s swimming lesson and got the midwife, I hope it’s not all too much xxx

Lilybeth profile image
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711

Good to hear that you think you have turned a corner after no hallucinations recently. So sorry to hear that your mum is isolating as your dad has covid but I’m glad your aunt is available to help with your children.

It’s early days so please remember to rest as much as you can and let the midwife know how you really feel. Perhaps she might be able to signpost you to support at home. The Home-Start UK charity have volunteers to help families coping with postnatal illness at home-start.org.uk/ so perhaps this could be temporary support until your mum is able to visit if there’s a team in your area.

Take good care of yourself and although it’s not easy with three treasured children, go to bed if it all gets too much and contact your care team.

Lilybeth profile image
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711

Just thinking of you and hope you are ok. It must be hard without the support of your mum during the week and worrying about your dad. I hope he is feeling a bit better. Some of my family members had covid and I remember what an anxious time it was. Thankfully they tested negative over time so that was a great relief.

Try not to rush yourself and rest if you can find time. Not to worry about replying as it’s a good idea if you can switch off from technology once in a while.

We are all hoping for you .... take care xxx

Thanks Lilybeth. I really appreciate all of you understanding, I’m so glad I found this place, I’ve asked on a parenting forum with several thousand members and nobody replied to say they had experienced it!

I’m doing a lot better now, the hallucinations and confusion seems to have gone at the moment although I do still feel a bit scrambled if too much happens at once. I’m so relieved! My Dad is also doing much better with covid - the bigger worry is that my Mum is clinically extremely vulnerable due to having bone marrow cancer and a stem cell transplant 5 years ago, so her immune system doesn’t react like it should. However she’s still testing negative so far. I’m starting to have time alone with the kids now and it feels good to know I can do it now. That said, I still have family helping out on some days so I don’t get too tired xx

Hi Amethyst1711

It's so good to read your update and hear how well you are managing, even with the worry of Covid for your mum and dad. It does sound like such a relief to get to a place where your hallucinations and confusion have gone, and you feel able to spend a bit of time with your children alone. I'm so glad you have got ongoing family support and are taking good care of your energy levels and tiredness.

Really glad it has helped you to be connected to other mums who have had PP. Well done for persevering after you had no answer on the other massive parenting forum!

Keep taking it all in your own time - you are doing amazingly...

Naomi

Lilybeth profile image
LilybethVolunteer

Hello Amethyst1711

Good to hear that you’re doing a lot better now .... such a relief for you. I’m glad in a way you know your limits and family are ready to step in some days. How lovely that you are now feeling more confident on your own with your three treasured little ones.

I hope your mum and dad continue to improve as they navigate their way through health issues.

You sound as if you are doing really well but take a little time in the slow lane and accept all the support around you. Even resting on the sofa, snuggled under a duvet with your children watching their favourite film, or CBeebies, is a fun thing you might like.

Keep talking to your care team and take good care of yourself. Thanks for writing .... we are all here for you.

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