Needing help now

Hi,

I have a 4 month old baby. i suffered with depression before i was pregnant. at the moment i feel like i have lost my life and i havent a clue who i am. i'm passive aggressive to my partner and often make "digs" about them having more time to themselves than i do and that there life hasnt changed. i cant seem to see the point of anything and feel like my life is on hold until the baby is older and doesnt need me so much all the time. i love my little one dearly. Sometimes i just cry as i feel like my life is in chaos and i spend my days wishing for the baby to go to sleep. i dont really know what i'm doing or how to be a mother.

Whats wrong with me?

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8 Replies

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  • Sounds like your depression has not fully lifted. Talk to your gp, or someone who has experience with perinatal work- nurse/ doctor in your area. If the gp doesn't know go to a&e their is alway an a&e liaison service. Hope this helps

  • Don't feel guilty. You could do with some help, but there's nothing wrong with you as such - I mean that not in the sense of "so stop moaning" but in the sense that there is a way out if you can find it. I think you'll find most of your problems are quite normal. Ask any mum, and if she's honest she'll tell you she doesn't feel like she knows what she's doing most of the time. If she tells you otherwise, she's probably on the defensive because she's been criticised so much. I've been through a lot of depression in the past, and have to say Í've come out of it none the wiser as to how to deal with it, but what's more important is that somehow I came out of it anyway. I wish I did know the trick to shifting depression, because it does linger on for ages, and you miss so much of life. There doesn't seem to be a magic answer - it's what ever you can find. Maybe finding friends with babys to go for a walk with could help to some extent. I sometimes found (and still do actually) if I send a text or email to someone just asking how they're doing and how this and that went that they were telling you about, and coming up with something, no matter how banal, that just might amuse them (I wrote to my best mate about how pilates makes me fart and she loved it), I get a huge lift when they get back to me saying how glad they are that I'm doing so well. You'll probably improve bit by bit, gradually adding things to your life that lift you up. I was very lucky as I met someone special who gave me a kick start, but even after that it took me three years of improving relationships with friends and family, and learning new life skills. I have to say, however controversially, that doctors, psychotherapists and psychiatrists didn't help at all for me - in fact I'm convinced they made it much worse. Now my mother's got depression and is going down the NHS route (National Health Service - is this chat British or American?), it really worries me, and I'm doing all I can to try and give her alternative forms of help. Even though I don't know you, I really feel I want you to overcome this. I think I perhaps see a bit of myself in you - I'm pregnant with my first child, and really hope I won't go back into depression. Hope is what keeps us going sometimes.

  • Hi MissyM

    I would definitely talk to your GP or Health Visitor if you can as soon as possible - whichever one you feel will take the time to listen to you best. As other posters have said, there are so many treatment options for depression and you don't have to go down the medication route if you don't want to.

    Isolation can be a big problem for all new mums, and is especially hard when you are depressed. Have you had a look at Mumsnet for recommendations of good baby groups/activities like baby yoga and massage near you? local.mumsnet.com/find-a-lo...

    MoodGym moodgym.anu.edu.au/welcome/... is a free online CBT course which is a helpful starting point for understanding some of your common triggers for depression. It can be a bit cheesy but I found it helpful as I could do it at home.

    Hope these ideas help

  • Hi MissyM

    I had severe depression after I had my daughter 7 years ago, so I do relate to how your feeling at the moment. I became depressed just prior to the birth and then it continued after the birth. I felt like I was grieving my previous life after the baby was born. Then i'd beat myself up for being so selfish..But to be honest, I think lots of new mums feel this way, even when they're not depressed. When I returned to work after 12 months, so many mums approached me and confided in me that they found it really hard to cope, and that they couldn't go out in public with the baby on their own, or put the baby to bed on their own etc.

    I promise you it will get better. I didn't think that I would ever feel any different (better) and that life would be good again when I was depressed, but my mood did lift little by little. It took me a good 10 months to start really enjoying things again and the improvement was very gradual. So don't expect too much of yourself, and please don't be too harsh on yourself. We tend to be our own worst critics when were feeling low. But it will get better. I couldn't bond at all with my baby for the first few months, and felt so guily and such a failure as a mum, so your doing great in that department. And you definately shouldn't feel bad that you get to have a rest or just feel relieved when the baby is asleep.

    There is an excellent organisation called the association on postnatal illness (APNI). They have one to one telephone counsellors. The website is: apni.org email: info@apni.org telephone: 020 7386 8885. Most of the volunteers have suffered depression of varying degrees after having a baby. They will arrange for a counsellor to talk to you every week by phone if you think that might be helpful. I would give them a try. As Naomi said, depression can make you feel very isolated, and just getting out the house with a new baby can sometimes feel like a mammoth task (even when your not depressed).

    Hope this helps and please post on here again if you want to chat online with us here at APP. x

  • Hi MissyM, I know it's not easy for you right now but with help you will be fine. First of all, sit down with your partner and explain how you're feeling, that you don't mean to be aggressive towards him, you just need his help and understanding.

    My friends here have given good advice and I would also point you towards 'Ruby's Room' where Ruby Wax talks about depression and to people who have experienced 'it'. One woman she talks to remarks how we should all wear a bandage on our heads so that other people would recognise that we are hurting, as they do if we have a plaster over a wound!! This woman also talks about crying all the time but at the time of the video, with the help of medication, exercise and CBT, she was feeling much better about herself.

    So with your partner's understanding and if you seek help from your G.P. (sometimes G.P's are just that 'General' Practitioners, so ask to be referred to a specialist team) and don't leave the surgery until there is a promise of help for you and your baby. Don't be isolated - get out there, get help and in time all will be well.

    Take care.

  • Hi Everyone,

    thanks for the messages. its really helped to hear peoples thoughts. it hadnt occured to me that it might just be normal depression (whatever that is) and not something baby related. I'm attempting to talk to my partner today about it although i'm scared. he's always been good about depression but now he seems to think i have it easy as he has to go out to work while i'm on maternity so am at home all day.

    i became fixated on a kitchen knife yesterday and even saw myself driving it through my chest. dont feel suicidal though. i find it hard to get to sleep although once i'm asleep i'm pretty out of it.

    i wish i could deal with all this without having to tell anyone as i dont want to say any of this outloud in front of my baby. can the health visitor take my baby off me if i tell her about everything?

    thanks again

    Missy

  • Missy M please talk to your health visitor or GP, they will not judge you,and hopefully help you.Just talking to someone who is not emotionally involved can be very helpful, you have recognised that you need help and that is very positive step in the right direction

    Hope this helps

  • Hi MissyM,

    I hope today is a better day & things go much smoother for you. Have you managed to make an appointment to see your GP or spoken to anyone about how you're feeling yet? It's important that you do & that you get the help that you need - you really don't have to struggle on as you are, help is out there. It's really hard making that first step to get help, not only do you feel a failure as a mother (definitely not true!) but also there's the fear your baby will be taken away. That's a dreadful fear that most of us had, but it also isn't true. Professionals want what is best for you & your baby & do their very best to keep you together.

    Try not to be afraid about fixating on knives (or other things), it seems to be quite common for some reason. I think quite a few use distraction as a way of coping with them - focus really closely on something else, leave the room, do a puzzle etc. I'm sure you'll find your own ways of dealing with them. This community pniorguk.healthunlocked.com/ is similar to this one only it's specifically for postnatal depression (not PP like this one). I'm sure the lovely ladies there have similar experiences to yours & will be able to offer you lots more tips.

    Take care & let us know how you get on x

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