can't get over PE...advice please?

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby holliadrienne » Tue Nov 30, 637677 1:25 pm

thank you all so very very much...I have tried to talk to what i thought were close friends about what i am going through, and they just look at me like i am crazy. I guess i can't expect them to understand something that they have never experienced...I sometimes just feel like I need to go away for a complete day by myself and just go over every detail of my pregnancy and delivery and scream and cry and get it all out so maybe i could be free of it...but that isn't realistic and I don't even think it would work.

But I do go over every detail, again and again, and I can't stop it from always playing over in my head. Now that I am back at work it has gotten worse, and I haven't quite figured out is so hard to be away from my son so maybe that is why.

Anyway, I have wondered for awhile if i could possibly have some kind of post traumatic stress thing going on, but i thought i was just being neurotic. I am thinking very seriously about contacting a therapist because I want to be able to move on from this...thank you all for your continued support and guidance...I would have been so lost the last 5 months if this site didn't exist!


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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby mommajo » Mon Nov 29, 637677 3:37 am

I just want to say that everyone's comments have been very moving to me. I had my son almost 4 years ago and I still look back on the events of his birth and feel like it was extremely traumatic. Now that I am pregnant again I am talking about my fears more and relating more about my experiences of my first pregnancy to people that are close to me. I don't think even my dh and mother really got how traumatic the first pregnancy was for me. I had wanted to do a completely natural birth and got completely the opposite, now I am finding out because I ended up with a c-section last time I will have to have another one this time as my hospital doesn't do VBACs so I am still being effected by my last pregnancy. The healing after a PE pregnancy I don't think is ever fully complete, it is always there lurking in your memories, but it will start moving back in your mind. I think seeing a therapist for the post traumatic stress is a great idea. I congratulate you for voicing your emotions so well, I think that will help you.

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby crogers » Sun Nov 28, 637677 11:01 pm

I have to echo everyone else. It's almost been 2 years since Lillian was born, and although a good part of the overwhelming (what I call tidal wave feelings) have diminished, there will be days when I'm just kicked in the behind out of nowhere with the severity of what happened.

I have been grateful and angry all at the same time. Grateful to still be alive- and angry that my birthing experience will never be like other women. I have women ask me about delivery and I have to tell them i cant help them there- or if I took birthing classes- and I tell them I had my baby before I even took them, etc.

For me, I think what was so interesting is that I was never confronted with my own mortality (and for that matter, my daughter's mortality) and it happened so fast- I didnt even have time to begin to process it until at least a month or two after I had her.
It's very normal to experience anger, fear (of sickness, dying, etc), questions- as what we have been through is incredibly traumatic.

Anyway, dont mean to ramble- the point is- you are among women who understand and please do not feel like (and dont let anyone else make you feel like) you have to have it "together" after only three months. Healing is a journey that will look different for all of us.

You're in my thoughts.

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby missgamecock » Sun Nov 28, 637677 8:10 pm

Why I am still here after a 7 1/2 year old pe pregnancy. What you are experiencing is part of the grieving process that we all go through. It will always be there but with time does get better. I still have moments of jealousy. Actually there was a guy at dh's work that just had a baby. She went overdue. It was excruciating for me to get the daily update with questions from dh. He didn't understand why I was getting so upset. Some of the questions were: Why do they get to do a planned induction and we didn't (duh we had emergency inductions, baby had to be born that day); why are they inducing at 41 weeks and we were induced at 35 & 36 (he thought it was normal); what does it mean to be having contractions every 5-7 minutes (how the heck would I know, I never got to time my contractions, would never know how to do it, cause I never got that far). I finally had to say stop. He was like why are you upset about it? I told him becuase I didn't get to do that. Even if I have a normal pregnancy next time, it is very unlikely that I will ever be allowed to go into labor on my own as they will never allow me to go past 40 weeks. So just stop. I don't want to hear how they are able to go and do stuff and she is overdue whining about it. Dh backed off. he eventually did tell me a week later that she had the baby spontaneous labor with her water breaking.

So what you are feeling is normal. After I had Sara, my ob put me on Zoloft for PPD and anxiety. When he put me on it, he said you have been through a rough delivery and pregnancy. You have been through a tough time. You are not crazy. This is just a temporary thing and you will not be on these meds forever. He also told me it was ok to be on the meds. That there was not anything wrong with it because it was a medical problem. He said it was to just get through a rough patch. He was right. I was on zoloft for about 6 months. I have been off of them ever since. Sometimes I have a twinge of sadness. You are completely normal. We all have those feelings of what if. I know that the reason that Sara is so healthy and active is because of my ob being proactive. Our ped told me that as well. So when I pass by the office, hopsital, I always think it was because he watched me so carefully that Sara is as healthy as she is.

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby kathyc » Fri Nov 19, 637677 2:20 am


I am sorry for all you have been through and continue to have to cope with. I think many of us have experienced similar emotions and fears. I cried every day for at least a month, and even after that I was still crying pretty frequently. And I know just what you mean about holding your baby so tight. I did that too (Actually, I still do that sometimes and she is now THREE years old!)

Three months is a VERY short time when it comes to emotional healing. You went through a life-threatening ordeal. Only, not many people really know enough about preeclampsia to recognize that. I love the idea of comparing your experience to a car accident. It might help them understand. Good for you for trying the antidepressants also!

A friend of mine who is a social worker says that EVERY birth experience (yes, even the "perfect" ones)is traumatic and that is why ALL women tell their birth stories over and over, throughout their lives. (Think of all the women who told you about their birth experiences when you were pregnant) So when the birth is dangerous and frightening, we need to talk about it even more.

Please consider seeing a therapist who has some experience with traumatic stress. A few sessions to vent in a nonjudgemental setting may be all you need. And, of course, come here. I don't know what I would have done without the wonderful women in these forums.

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby deerhart » Fri Nov 19, 637677 12:11 am

Along the lines of what you posted is the reason why I am still around here 6.5 years after my first PE pregnacy (in fact 7 years since I got pregnant) and 4 years since my last pregnancy!

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby holliadrienne » Thu Nov 18, 637677 11:41 pm

thank you really helps to just hear that you aren't crazy and someone else feels the same. I love this forum, I don't know what I would do without it! Today has just been a bad day...

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby heather j » Thu Nov 18, 637677 11:07 pm

Holly, I think a lot of people here understand your thoughts. You, unlike me, at least had/have the courage to speak out about it; I just wallowed in misery for six months. I think the hardest part for me was everyone else's perception of it. My mil asked me the day I was out of the hospital following what was the scariest time in my life if we were having another one soon. I couldn't believe that what I had gone through for almost two months hadn't even registered in her consciousness. She was in a pretty serious car accident a few years back that required a couple months of rehab. I swear, just this past weekend, that I told dh that my PE/HELLP experience was as traumatic as her accident so Catherine's analogy is extremely befitting a preeclamptic pregnancy. She talks about her accident and how she could have died to this day, but when referring to my first pregnancy, she just says "think of all the other women in the world who are having babies, it can't be that bad." I think if more people realized that "yes, it absolutely can and IS" we would all have an easier time of it. I'm glad you, I, and all the other women who have experienced "square-peg" pregnancies that don't fit into that round hole perception have this forum to turn to where we aren't judged and we find people who truly "get it." I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers that you can find at least a little resolution.

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Re : can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby akemt » Thu Nov 18, 637677 9:00 pm

Oh Holli, I'm so sorry! Preeclampsia is scary business and anyone who doesn't undestand how completely it can affect your life obviously hasn't had to deal with it in theirs! It is just as life-threatening as having been in a car crash...remember that and maybe even use that as an explanation, if need be. This involved both your life and your sons; it doesn't get much scarrier than that. Had you been in an accident on the road, people would understand your being shaken up a bit, sore, tired, driving slower and being paranoid about seat belts, following safety laws, long-term physical recover, etc...Even things like nightmares and gratitude for your son. Don't let others' opinions hurt you --they don't know the whole story and have not lived your life.

I don't know how people get past preeclampsia. I think alot of it just has to do with time, much like greiving. Eventually it will slowly move to the back of your thoughts, though in many ways, it will always be there. For me, I think I might be past it a good 3-4 years, a second healthy (yet quasi-complicated) delivery, an underlying disorder diagnosis, and "suprise" pregnancy later. Will that last throughout pregnancy? Probably not, but I seem to be getting MUCH closer.

I worry that right now you might need a little extra help and going it on your own is perhaps just an extra burden you don't need durring your healing process. Many of us have experienced "Post traumatic stress disorder" in relation to our preeclamptic experiences, and maybe it would behoove you to be evaluated more along those lines?

quote:Originally posted by holliadrienne

...My GYN put me on an antidepressant, and it helped so much... at first felt ashamed, but now I know that a good mother would take care of herself to be the best mom she can be insead of letting it go because of pride.

--Same thing applies. I don't know the numbers, but I'm sure it is a HUGE percentage of people who have been or are in therapy of some sort and at one time or another in their lives. SO, don't let yourself feel ashamed for that, should you choose it. Maybe finding someone you're comfortable with, who won't get tired of hearing you voice your fears and emotions, and who can help guide you to that more peaceful place you are seeking is just what you need to get through this tough spot? I've been in counselling at different hard points in my life. It doesn't mean you are weak to seek help, and if it just isn't right for you, it isn't permanent either.

Many of us can also relate to feeling like (or being called) a zealot about preeclampsia. I say: "So be it!" Better to be considered a zealot and save one life than to be quite and lose one...Of course, that doesn't help your friendships much in the meantime! Oy, been there too. That's a big part of what spurred me to spend so much time on these forums --people here understand.

I hope you can start to feel more settled with your past and more comfortable with your new self,

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can't get over PE...advice please?

Postby holliadrienne » Thu Nov 18, 637677 5:30 pm

ok, so most of you know me...but here is a quick intro. I am not quite 3 months post partum with a perfect wonderful healthy son. Within two weeks after he was born I knew something was not right with my emotions and my GYN put me on an antidepressant, and it helped so much. I had never taken them before and at first felt ashamed, but now I know that a good mother would take care of herself to be the best mom she can be insead of letting it go because of pride.

anyway...i work in the same hospital i delivered in and have only been back to work one week. This past week has been so hard, and not only because of having to be away from my son. I never realized how hard it would be to tell the people that ask about his delivery all the details of Trevan's birth...I don't even know how to explain how i am feeling other than I feel like I have to relive the whole experience all over again.

This time though is different, because instead of fear I am angry, and bitter. I see a healthy skinny pregnant woman smiling and jogging, and I get so upset because I could never do that. I think about all the mistakes my doctor's made that could have produced severely bad outcomes, and I get angry. I walk past the nursery and I cry thinking about how my son may not be here....

It has been three months! Why can't I move on? Everyone expects me to not even think about all the * I went through because it is over now, but it isn't over because every night I still have nightmares that wake me up...I still have flashbacks to how blue my son was when he was born,...I think about all the things I could have done differently that might have led to lower blood pressure or...i could go on and on.

sometimes i pick up my son and hold him so tight that he cries to be loose,...and i cry because i think about what my life would be like right now if he weren't here...but he is here and i thank God everyday for that.

I feel like I have lost a part of my life to this disease, I think about it all the pregnant friends are sick of me asking how their swelling is or how their blood pressure is...

I know this is long, I just feel so alone husband doesn't even think about the past, and he doesn't understand why i do. I don't understand either, but i can't seem to stop...i need some help here ladies...i cannot get over what PE has done to me, and every day when i look into the mirror and see the stretch marks all the way down my legs because of the swelling, or i get the spots in my vision, i know this disease will forever be a part of me and i hate it. how do i move on from here? has anyone else experienced this?


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