My little Llewy is 2 weeks old now and both myself and my partner are totally besotted with him, he's absolutely amazing and is doing so well after a really horrible birth. I'm not doing so well. My body and mind feel completely broken, I'm so worried that my surgical cut and tears won't heal, I'm in constant pain that pain killers barely put a dent in and I can't stop going over the birth in my head and thinking about how disappointed I am with my birth experience. I do have a referral to a mental health team and midwives are keeping an eye on my wounds but I honestly feel like I'm never going to get over what happened to us.
Recovering from a traumatic birth: My little Llewy is... - NCT
No body tells you the complications you can experience in child birth and it’s true when they say everyone’s is different .My sister Inlaw had my nephew 3months ago and they had to cut her back to front to get oscar out .She has only been released from the care team at the women’s hospital and still hasn’t healed completely but please god she will get there .Im sure your doing an amazing job and as we know babies don’t come with a manual and it’s all about getting to know your own baby and no one knows them better than Mammy and daddy .Im so sorry you had such a rough experience but labour is all hit and miss .Some have it plain sailing some are just unlucky In how there journey through child birth goes but look at that little human YOU brought into this world and give yourself an almighty good pat on the back cause your bloody AMAZING 😉 and I’m sure hubby and Llewy think so too .I hope the feelings of negativity go soon with the right care and your back to your beautiful self real soon enjoying every ounce of mother hood that little guy is relying on you .Keep going your a warrior after all xxxxx big massive Irish kisses and cwtches 😍😍 to you all xxxxx
Thank you lovely, it's all so overwhelming and you're right that you are just never prepared for any of it. I'm hopeful that talking to someone may help but I'm equally scared that I'll never be the sane again and that I'll always look back on that experience with massive negativity. My partner is literally holding me together, I'm so lucky to have him x
I know it’s hard darling but when you look back look back on the positive of it all your little boy that you waited so long for Im sure in the end the positive ms will outweigh the negatives and know your not alone just cause you have had your baby now dosent mean your network on this site has gone there will be mammies and daddies on here just willing people along I’m all for bugging people up and no one should judge we are all different but don’t let the powerful tool of the mind take over you .Your so strong you created a little person your a very very special person xxx
Sorry to hear you had a traumatic birth I know how difficult this is as I had a bad experience with my son and then before I had my daughter I was put on antidepressants and anti anxiety meds as I got so worked up it would happen all over again so I had to talk to my consultant to try and take some control and I still struggled by the time I was taken in to be induced with my daughter as this was the only way I would have some control I was a complete mess so talk to people to see if you can get some support now as I didn’t after my son and I think that made me worse.
I wish I could say my second experience was better it was in one way I wasn’t as badly effected this time but there was a point where they thought my daughter wasn’t gunna survive thank god she’s ok tho.
I really hope you and Llewy are ok xXx
Thank you for your advice and kind words. I'm glad I've got my referral to the post-natal mental health team and I'm really hoping it helps. At the moment I've told myself and my partner that I don't want any more children, I just can't picture going through that again.
I'm so sorry you had a tough time with your births as well but thank you for sharing your existence, it helps to know I'm not alone.
Love to you and your family x
Your defo not alone and I know how it feels even my husband struggled to understand why I was so bad before the birth of my daughter I tried explaining the first time I nearly died so my anxiety wasn’t unfounded defo take the support I didn’t and ended up with really bad post natal depression. I never thought I would do it again I’m glad I did but I can happily say that I’m done now and I will not be putting myself through it again !
Really hope you get all the help you need just remember there is always support and it’s better to access it than ignore it I found that out the hard way !
Just enjoy your gorgeous baby boy and think about the positive of having him xXx
Sorry to hear you’re struggling.
I remember your post when he was born and it sounded like a really difficult experience. You’re obviously doing a great job if he’s doing well and he’s lucky to have such a strong, brave mummy looking after him!
I felt my birth was a positive experience compared with some so I can’t claim to understand how you feel. However I did get induced due to IVF and had an episiotomy which really, really hurt for a good few weeks afterwards. Sitting down was excruciating at times and I remember crying with pain in the night when I was getting up to breastfeed. I remember being terrified that it was infected but it was fine. It did settle in the end and was totally back to normal within about a month.
Please take any support you can for your mental health. A lot of hospitals do a sort of de-briefing session for people who had a difficult birth so maybe check with your midwife?
It's my episiotomy I'm struggling with most, the stitches have opened and it's so painful all the time. Going for a wee is agonising. The drs have advised it will take about 6 weeks to heal and that really gets me down as the pain stops me getting out and about with Llewy. We have a debrief with the consultant who delivered Llewy but it's not until the end of March, which feels a long way away when I'm struggling to process what happened.
Thanks so much for your support, just talking about it with people who understand is so helpful x
Don’t worry about getting out too much at this stage. I was very active before birth and went straight into getting out and doing stuff despite the pain as that’s the type of person I am - out with the pram and out for lunch about 36hrs after he was born, at a food festival when he was 2 weeks old, took him in to work at 4 weeks. Felt like I was doing great. Within weeks I was struggling with my mental health and awful sleep deprivation which lasted for about 15 months because little boy was such an awful sleeper 🙄
I really don’t think I gave myself enough time to just rest and recover. 6 weeks feels like a long time at that stage but it really isn’t when you look back. Use this time to rest, heal, get looked after if possible and get to know your little man xx
Aw thank you lovely. Llewy is doing so well. His swelling is gone and the cut on his face has left only a small scar. He also had shoulder dystocia during delivery which damaged the nerves in his arm but he seems to be using it really well and starts his physio tomorrow 💙 he's a real tough cookie bless him, he's taken it all in his stride x
Hey kitcat12, O bless you, I’m sorry you’ve had a traumatic birth, even though I know your over the moon to have your gorgeous little boy. I also had an unpleasant experience (induced, episiotomy and forceps and they were also concerned about his heartbeat throughout which made it so stressful) I was drugged up to the max to deal with an extremely long labour when I had planned for a water birth. It does feel like you’ve been kicked in the bits by a horse doesn’t it? I was sore for a while down there, took about 4-6weeks for me.....but it will heal soon...I promise. I made the midwives come visit me and check my stitches every couple of days to see how they were healing. Are you having them regularly checked? It is surprising how quickly the birth experience fades over time but it’s still very raw for you at the moment! 2 weeks is no time at all. I suffered with baby blues for a little while due to sleep deprivation and it’s a hell of a lot to go through physically and emotionally. Your doing amazing, your little boy is with you and safe and don’t expect anything of yourself from these early days. Xxx
This is almost exactly my experience. 50 hours of back labour, a failed epidural, rotational forceps and shoulder dystocia, loads of tearing and a whopping great episiotomy. Kicked in the bits by a horse just about sums it up perfectly! I am having my wound checked because the stitches have opened up but I'm trying to let it heal without re-stitching. I also really relate to feeling extremely sleep deprived, it's scary to be so tired. The first week I even had hallucinations and utterly bizarre dreams due to lack of sleep! I'm glad to hear that this feeling will fade and I'm so grateful for your support x
50 hours 😬 poor you. Nothing can prepare you for birth and everyone has such a different experience. It’s truly amazing how you can just about function on such little sleep! I could never sleep when my boy slept during the day so I was practically a zombie. 😂 The traumatic feeling for me has faded and seems A bit like a fuzzy bad dream...I would not have got through it without ALL the pain relief. You will heal very soon physically and emotionally! Re:stitches- pouring warm water onto it from a jug after urinating helped me and gently pat dry. Your exhausted and sore and looking after an amazing but extremely demanding little human. You’ve done so well after all you’ve been through to get your gorgeous little man. I felt like I can do anything after giving birth 😂 xxx
I've just been reading through the other msgs above. Here, after you've had a baby, they recommend not to go out for the first 2 months. My sister in law told us off for going out to lunch with the baby when she was 3 weeks old!!! And we often got side eye in the supermarket when she was very little!!
It's a bit extreme, but you DO have a lot of adjustments to make, you're sleep deprived and still recovering physically. Don't push yourself to be out and about, screw the housework and, honestly, screw visitors if you're not feeling up to it. Be selfish and think of yourself and the little fella. I didn't have a traumatic birth, but I did have to recover from a c-section and it was good to take things as easy as possible for a while xxx
I’m so sorry you had such a traumatic experience, especially after everything you went through to get to that day.
Trauma gets trapped in the body and to fully heal, it’s ideal if you can see a somatic professional. They’re called all different things, but if you google somatic counselor in your area, hopefully someone will pop up. I also highly recommend the below book as something you can easily do yourself. I personally found it very helpful in healing from my own traumatic experience after my son was born.
I also recommend checking out the Mind website for “Mums Matter”. There are a lot of great resources on there.
Try to be patient with yourself. Healing will take time. I know it doesn’t feel like it right now, but it’s absolutely temporary.
Take care. Xx
My experience sounds very similar to yours, I was induced due to slowed movements, my little girl was back to back which they didn’t realise until they rushed me through for an emergency c section and said I would be better to push. Dr manually turned baby and then forceps. I had the same as you, my episiotomy stitches ripped and opened and got infected and the pain was horrendous I couldn’t walk properly for about 2 weeks. I was put on antibiotics and slowly it got better. The drs also told me 6 weeks it would take till it properly healed but I have to say with they help of antibiotics it was quicker than they. They said they wouldn’t restitch unless I absolutely needed it so gave it time to heal on its own. I also didn’t think I would heal but I promise you do and the pain goes. It doesn’t help when your going through the baby blues and dealing with the pain. I promise you this will not last forever and you will slowly get better each day. I found having a jug by the toilet and pouring over me slowly while I did a wee helped with the pain and keep yourself dosed up on painkillers. I was also given some tablets that were kept in the fridge to help me soften for the back end which helped loads.
I hope you have a lot of support around you as I guess you are finding it hard to do simple things at the moment. I actually moved back in with my mum for a couple weeks as much as I love my husband he was a bit useless as I had a toddler too. Take every bit of help you are offered until you feel better. My little girl is now 1 and although I still remember the birth I don’t feel as negative towards the experience.
I hope you feel better soon xxxx
I’m so sorry to hear of your traumatic birthing experience! Everyone has a different one, (these women that sail through it omg) I had a traumatic birth with my first son (I was only 22 at the time). Induced, long labour, he was posterior so my OB attempted a Kelans rotation (not practiced much anymore as it’s quite barbaric) forceps and it all failed and they had me pushing for a couple of hours. My sons heart beat dropped a few times throughout it as well that was scary.
With the evidence of a natural traumatic birth...ended in an emergency C-Section after all that. I’m so grateful it did! But my son had head and neck trauma and screamed a lot in his first few weeks and couldn’t breast feed due to it. He’d go blue if we tried from screaming. I ended up physically sick for days vomiting and anxiety after due to the shock. Turns out I have a small pelvis (so lucky my son didn’t get to the point of being stuck in the birth canal).
After it all I then had a family friend say to me that I took the “easy way out” of giving birth by having the CS and I failed! WTF? Have never spoken to that old mean bat ever since. I mean what an idiot she was! That was her stiff not mine.
What helped me was I focused on that I had a healthy baby boy and things could have been so much worse. So many women don’t get to find home wuth a healthy bubby. Definitely talking about it, how you feel however framing it as positively as you can. Not replaying it as nothing can change it. You are still in early stages of processing it all so just be kind and patient with yourself, mind and body as hard as that is!
Please slow down and just stay at home, enjoy your bubby (they grow up so fast) there’s heaps of time to get out and about later when you are healed and it’s best for bub to stay away with risk of picking up illnesses whilst his immune system isn’t ready yet. Rest and take any and all pressure off yourself. Ask for help (this is a big one...from friends/family) express milk (or if you’re formula feeding) for your bub and get hubby to feed him whilst you sleep. Rest and sleep will heal you faster more than anything!
I’m due to have my 4th bub in 11 weeks via CS...honestly...after a birth like you’ve had, having another one won’t even be on your mind but give it time...and if you do want another one...given your experience with number 1...opt for a CS next! All my next experiences have been wonderful!
I feel your pain...it’s bloody awful however...look at that little man you are holding. 💙
My best friend has been through hell and back (almost dying) just trying to be able to have a baby. She’s gone through everything you can possibly try and things you aren’t even aware of. She’d give anything to go through whatever pain she had to have her own baby but sadly never will and she’s only 30 years old. She’s been trying for 6 years, spent thousands of $ and so so sick only to be told there no chance now. This gives me perspective at times...
Please rest and be kind to yourself. It’s bloody awful what you’ve been through however a massive positive came out of it. How I looked at my experience was that many people go through worse trauma without the reward of a baby.
Congratulations on getting through it and ensure you get every bit of help you need! Sending you loads of healing vibes xx 💖
Thank you for all your advice. I am so grateful that Llewy is safe! Like you say, it could've been so much worse. I think because Llewy is an IVF baby I feel even more anxious about trying again one day, getting pregnant is stressful and painful enough without the worry of another horrendous birth. I think we'll just enjoy the little miracle we've got x
First of all a massive congrats on the birth of your little boy! I had no idea you had your baby yet as I dip in and out of this forum and hadn't seen your announcement post a fortnight ago. Funny I was thinking about you and wondering if you had your baby as I remember you were a little ahead in pregnancy than I. (I am 39weeks plus 1)
I feel so sorry you had such a dreadful and difficult birth. It brings back memories when I had my daughter over 5 years ago. Like your son, she was born back to back. I also like yourself had an episiotomy and forceps delivery. Unlike you, I didn't seek any help following my daughter's birth. In hindsight I should have sought counselling/saw a mental health team. I ended up with flashbacks for a long time and also severe postnatal depression which was undiagnosed as I kept it hidden. Looking back it was my faith that helped me survive and my daughter too. I had such dark thoughts and felt I was a failure due to the birth/treatment/attitude of midwives towards me etc. Please do see your mental health team and even visit your GP and ask for a referral for counselling. Regarding your wounds I am wincing as I write this. I thought I would never be right again following my stitches after the episiotomy.. I also had horrendous piles too. It took much longer than 6weeks for me to heal. I was in pain constantly. The good news is... You will survive all this. The wounds will heal. Maybe not as soon as you would like, but they will in time. The emotional wounds will ease in time too but after my own experience with hiding my thoughts and feelings, they only heal with help. I didn't do this and should have.
You should be incredibly proud of yourself. You have a gorgeous baby son. You brought him into the world. You did this and never forget it. After all you have been through he is your victory. You are a Mummy now and a superb one at that. You will get through this. I am so glad you have an amazing rock of a partner to lean on. The whole experience will bring you even closer. Take one day at a time. It will take a while to recover in every way. Don't be afraid to mention to your GP/health visitor about the pain/discomfort you are in. I know how horrible it is. I had tea tree oil and witch Hazel baths. Also put pads in the freezer with cooling witch Hazel oil poured on them. I wore massive granny pants too. As I suffered from horrendous piles too I had to take stool softener to help with bowel movements. Drink plenty of fluids. I also ended up with persistent UTIs. Please feel free to message me anytime. If I can help you in any way/just chat I will. I know too well what you have been through and are going through as by sounds of things we have had very similar experiences. Please give yourself time. I said after my little girl I wouldn't have any more babies. Here I am about to give birth to my 3rd. I am anxious and worried but hoping I am listened to regarding my birth plan about having an epidural. In the mean time enjoy your beautiful boy. In time if and when you're pregnant again there are other options-c-section etc. Don't be put off.
This morning is another new day and another step forward in your recovery. Take time for you. Listen to music, enjoy a takeaway/lunch out, watch something good on TV, talk plenty about how you are feeling. You will look back on this time at a later date and be surprised at far you have come when you feel more healed. One day at a time... Sending you a hug. Take care. Xo
Thank you so much lovely! It really helps to hear that others have come through the other side of a horrible birth experience. It really sounds like we had similar experiences, apart from the fact that I have found the midwives incredibly supportive and helpful! I'm really glad I've gone for the referral to a mental health team and talking to ladies here is helpful as well x
Keep going you have got this momma!!!!
I had a good few similarities to you with regards to my long induced labour and birth being a lot more complicated than the ‘splashing about in the birth pool’ I had imagined!
...My forceps episiotomy was so painful initially and opened up with infection - two rounds of antibiotics later (although not right fully) it is SO much better! I am at 4 weeks now - and I can promise you it does get easier - the difference in how I felt 2 weeks ago compared to now is massive, I just randomly stopped needing to take all the painkillers and feeling like I wanted to cry just standing up of the sofa...you will get there! ...And the sleep deprivation and exhaustion makes everything so much harder to cope with on top of a broken body and teeny person to look after...but you are doing GREAT!
I’m still waiting on an appointment back at hospital (also worried that my wee hole has moved much lower and there are new lumps if anyone else has experienced this???)...but yes keep pushing for help and the regular checks you are having 😊 Your body will keep changing and healing, give yourself time, you have been through A LOT ♥️ x
Lot of people with good advice for you but also wanted to add something. My birth was the complete opposite of what I wanted but we made it through and you will too but it'll take a bit of time.
The first couple of weeks are so tough even if it all goes well. I was sobbing into my dinner uncontrollably on those first few weeks. The hormones, the tiredness and the pain etc all add up to just being totally overwhelmed. I cried if anyone asked me if I was ok. They told me it was normal though and that it would get better and pass, and it really did. There will be light at the end of the tunnel but reach out for all the support you can get from friends with babies (I had some lovely support from friends via what's app and visits), midwives and health visitors. Congratulations on your little one. They really are amazing. It is tough and roller coaster but my heart bursts with love everyday for my little guy. Take care.
My story is a bit different to yours but I can relate to a lot of what your feeling. I had acute fatty liver of pregnancy and had an emergency c section at 35 weeks. I healed really quickly and my baby seemed ready to go home after a week in NICU and special care. On the day we were due to be released, a doctor saw him twitch in his sleep. Cue 3 more weeks of needles, drugs, lumbar punctures on my poor little guy whilst they insisted he was having seizures. Eventually they sent him to uclh who concluded that he was completely fine. He is just a sleep twitcher like his parents. This was 15 months ago and he is brilliant with no issues at all. I was left with bad PTSD and didn’t leave the house for months. I still have anxiety but the flashbacks are less and less common. Traumatic births are so difficult to recover from and whilst I didn’t have any physical pain, the mental stress has been alarming at least. I would suggest speaking to your doctor about ptsd- it so often gets missed or mistaken for pnd, when in fact it’s very different and the treatment is also different. You have done so so well and your little boy is very lucky to have such a wonderful mummy. You’re also doing exactly the right thing by talking about it. Do not stop talking about it. It’s the best way to move forward.
So sorry you had such a traumatic time. No one can prepare you for labor, never mind things not going to plan. I too had a very traumatic experience (induction, baby not breathing when born, 4th degree tear requiring surgery) I was also in a lot of pain, I go over my birth every day in my head and it was 7 weeks ago, I feel like I’m traumatised by the whole experience from going through ivf to giving birth, my midwife discussed a referral for post labor briefing. What I will say is it does get easier, your body will heal and once it does your mind will start healing too, easy for me to say now but you’re doing an amazing job and your definitely not alone xxx
I know it’s hard to believe right now but it was become easier over time
Horrible births are so difficult to comprehend and, I am sorry you had a horrible experience. I know how it feels as mine was not so great either...
Try to rest where you can and, take all the help you need
Yes your baby is everything but, so is your recovery!!
Do not give yourself a hard time and remember, post birth especially a traumatic one every feeling is normal x
My birth didn't go straight forward they tried to induce me but i reacted badly to the induction i over stimulated while her also being back to back 😭and after 5 days of trying they just kept on wanting to try different ways in the end i said enough is enough and asked for a cesarean which was the last thing i wanted and i ended up with an infection had it not been for a couple of lovely midwives who stuck up for me i would've carried on being put through torture, despite the infection if my experience of the cesarean hadn't been positive i think i would've been mentally traumatised even more so i fully sympathise with you they say you forget but theres only so much you can forget 😣
My first was awful back to back baby 12 hours labour in hospital already had put up with 6 hours at home. I was cut and tore ventouse delivery any longer I think I would of had a c section i was stitches inside and out I couldn’t look down there for a good few weeks it was a painful recovery, I was mentally scarred for a long time then decided to have another I was so scared but thought no way that was normal my second was a breeze 3 hours labour about 3 mins pushing was great I felt great afterwards. Just take your time plenty of rest seek help if you need it x
Hi Kitcat12, congratulations on the birth of your beautiful baby and we'll done! I'm so sorry to hear that you had such a difficult birth. I can really empathise as I too had a traumatic birth which made me very unwell afterwards, physically and psychologically. It took me a while to seek help (partly because my postnatal care was terrible) but I changed GP's and saw my new GP for help about 6 months after giving birth and it was the best thing I could have done. It's not easy to recognise when we need support and you have done that so well done for taking that first step. Please be assured you're not alone. It can feel a very lonely place when you have gone through something so traumatic. I have been in contact with PANDAS who have been really helpful too. Please PM me if you want to chat. Sending you BIG hugs ♥️
It's such a shame because the midwives and healthcare assistants were fantastic help to me and Llewy, we were in hospital a whole week after he was born and have been in and out most days since, I haven't got a bad word to say about the care we've received from them. One dr sent me home with shortness of breath and a tight chest, the midwife called me back the next day and readmitted me for a battery of tests to check for clots in my lungs. Surely the dr shouldn't have sent me away?!
I'm so sorry to hear your care was poor too. It really is terrible that we are not supported well enough postnatally. I truly believe that if I had the support initially, I would not be in the position I have been for the last year. I hope you are getting the support you need. I also found the closed groups on Facebook helpful - there is a birth trauma one which is really good. I haven't had the confidence to post anything myself yet but I have found it helpful reading other people's experiences, it has made me feel like I'm not alone. Here is the link for PANDAS
❤️ Thanks so much. I think what I find frustrating is that you see so many different people and they all have different opinions. Midwives keep sending me to hospital with my episiotomy and the drs take one look and send me away telling me to give it time to heal but I'm just following midwife advice by going in to be seen. It's very annoying!
No problem ♥️ it's really frustrating isn't it!?! There seems to be such a lack of continuity. I had a large postpartum haemorrhage and when I went for my 6 week check the doctor said she couldn't find any evidence in my notes of this happening and actually said to me that 'they obviously felt it wasn't significant.' I had a copy myself and had to correct her. This fuelled my decision to change GPs as I wanted my daughter to be under a good doctor. Best decision I made. I hope you are getting good support from the professionals. Please feel free to message me any time of you need a chat, my inbox is always open 😘♥️😘
Hi I really am sorry for all you've been through. Although I didn't have a traumatic birth (only had a small tear and graze) it still took me several weeks to feel better and get going out and about. Just that was agony enough so I really do for you. With all you've been through lots and lots of self care and rest are definitely in order. You don't have to rush to be OK. We women put far too much pressure on ourselves to crack on and make out we're fine.
There's also so much pressure to 'enjoy every moment'. Which is just impossible. When you're in agony every time you pee your definitely allowed to acknowledge that it sucks!!
Get partner, family and friends to really rally round you. All you need to be doing at the moment is loving baby, resting and being looked after.
I hope you're feeling better soon xx
Oh lovely. I'm so sorry to read this. It sounds like you are being very well looked after by the midwives and good news about the referral. I'm sure talking about it and sharing how you are feeling will help.
Make sure you are looking after yourself. Get lots of rest - there is plenty of time to get out and about with your little one. I had to have stitches after the birth of Rosie and although it doesn't sound as traumatic as your experience I'm still very sore. I kind of thought I would out visiting people and walking the dog loads with baby in a sling 🙈 turns out I can just about manage a little plod around the block on a good day.
Sending you a massive hug and we are always here if you need a chat x x
😂 the day before we came out of hospital I was telling my mum how much I was looking forward to a walk round the park with Llewy and Archie (our dog) my mum just laughed! She was right, I have only managed a lap of the park once since coming home! Huge congratulations again on the birth of beautiful Rosie ❤️x