Bipolar and pregnant

Discussion in 'Pregnancy - Third Trimester' started by Alideebo, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. Alideebo

    Alideebo Member

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    Hello everyone. Just wondering if anyone else out there has bipolar disorder or depression and how they are coping? At first I was in a very bad way and had to increase my medication (which made me worse thinking about the potential damage I was doing to my little boy) but I've managed to get my self onto the lowest dosage possible which actually means breastfeeding is an option :) I am very proud of myself
    I am being induced on my DD (26th) because the doctors don't want me going over at all. I guess when the random factor is taken out of it (unless of course he's early) it makes it easier to deal with :)
    I was actually advised not to get pregnant, not because of to risks to the baby but risks to myself and I can't tell you how proud I feel knowing that I've been strong enough to get this far.
    Bit of a depressing thread, but has anyone else been in a similar situation?
     
  2. sequeena

    sequeena Winging it.

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    I suffer with depression.. I was on 75mg venlafaxine up to my :bfp: and stopped it as soon as I found out (like you I was worried about the effects). At 12 weeks my consultant and a substance midwife agreed to put me on Sertraline except I ended up in hospital when I took it because of an allergic reaction :dohh:

    I decided not to take anymore anti d's if I could avoid it and so far have managed myself ok. I'm going through a very stressful time though and can feel myself 'slipping' back to my old ways. I don't know if you're like this but I can tell the difference between 'normal' crying and 'depression' crying. It's quite scary but I'm hanging on at the minute, just trying to take it one day at a time.

    I won't hesitate to go back on medication if I think I'm going to hurt myself again though.

    :hugs: well done hun you're doing really really well!
     
  3. MommyandMe

    MommyandMe Round 2 Pregnancy!

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    I am bipolar...and I have luckily been able to manage w/o my meds...NOW,How everyone else has managed dealing with me being off my meds...A TOTALLY DIFFERENT STORY! But...I knew that it would only cause me more panic and stress being on meds...and this pregnancy has given me a fair share of stress! It's tough dealing with depression/bipolar disorder w/o being pregnant...the fact that we are able to deal with it being pregnant shows our true strength!!! we are almost there ladies!
     
  4. Cloe

    Cloe Well-Known Member

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    I just wanted to send out some big hugs to you ladies!!! I have a friend, who also was diagnosed bi-polar and I know how stressful and hard it can be at times! Pregnancy puts a load of stress onto our shoulders, even without being bi-polar I feel down sometimes and have my ups and downs.

    I am very impressed by the strength you have!

    Big hugs to all of you! :hugs:

    Cloe :shipw:
     
  5. SammieGrace

    SammieGrace Well-Known Member

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    I have anxiety/depression and have continued my fluoxetine and buspar through the pregnancy. The first time I was pg I went off of my meds and felt absolutely awful. Then I had a miscarriage and I think that my stress level did not help me at all in having a healthy pregnancy. So this time I stayed on those two meds and it has been much easier to cope with being pregnant. I know that there are some risks related to this choice, but my doc and I agreed that the benefits for me out way the risks and so far the baby is going great.

    To answer your question specifically about bipolar disorder, I have not experienced it first hand but my DH has this diagnosis and is medicated. We are both very glad that I am the one that carries the baby because neither of us would want him to go off of his meds. I am very proud of him and how well he is handling the transition to becoming a parent, especially since we also just moved to a different state and he is going to start a new job just before baby arrives.

    I totally understand what you mean about being advised not to get pregnant, because when we originally mentioned it to my DH's psychiatrist she advised against us having a baby because of the stress it could create for my DH. However, we both very much wanted to have a child, and I don't know about you, but I tend to feel a bit defensive when professionals advise against having children because of Bipolar Disorder. My hubby will make a great Daddy and he is a very smart and loving man. I am sure that you will make a great Mom, it sounds like you are doing all that you can to give your baby a healthy start.
     
  6. gmh

    gmh Well-Known Member

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    i dont have bipolar but i do have depression. iv stayed on fluoxitine, i wouldnt have survived without it. i think i can tell the difference between depression and normal crying too. iv also noticed i cant go as long without my meds without the harmful thoughts and depression coming back. a couple of times iv gone a day/ two days without it and BAM i have suicidal thoughts etc. i find my family think i will have a hard time once our boy is here. i have alot more faith in myself!!!! iv also had relationship difficulties thrown in too, which hasnt helped.

    it has been hard but so worth it. how can professionals advise against it? that doesnt make sense. we are encouraged to live normal lives and told we can with medication and support!! it is a bit hurtful when my sister or mum says things like "oh just have one child" or "u can move in with me if ur struggling". yes i might struggle at times but im a capable woman. im just going to prove them wrong and surprise them all!!

    congratulations to all of us, we will make superb mothers!!
     
  7. gmh

    gmh Well-Known Member

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    thankyou for starting this thread to, by the way. sometimes i i slip into that old thinking and feeling like im the only one. it warms my heart and lifts my spirit to hear im not so abnormal!!
     
  8. kaz29

    kaz29 Well-Known Member

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    well done to u for getting on the low dosage. And just goes to show that just because u have bipolar does not mean u cant enjoy the amazing gift of creating a life and becoming a mum. I dont care what the doctors have said about not getting pregnant. I dont have bipolar but i am a counseller and i dont believe that just because people have bipolar or depression that they shouldnt live their lives like the rest of us. I am sorry but i fail to understand the reasons as 2 why they said u would be in danger to yourself getting pregnant. I hate sterio typing like that. Ok yes its hard work at first for lots of people bipolar or not because of hormone changes - i mean i found it difficult but i believe in your case u proved those so called experts wrong. Good for u x
     
  9. FEDup1981

    FEDup1981 Mam of two & two angels

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    I have bipolar, and im still on my meds: Lithium, Seroquel, Imipramine and Nitrazepam. Im on quite high doses but have been carefully monitored by my psych and obs team. I was given good pre-conception advice, and tho it would have been best to come off my meds it just wasnt possible. Baby had a special heart scan at 20 weeks to check she didnt have Ebsteins anomaly caused by the lithium, but thankfully she is fine. Im being induced on the 4th July. I was originally coming off lithium for the labour but the obs team are unsure now, and i have to go back on thurs for the decision.

    TBH i have found it really tough, but the pregnancy hasnt been easy and had a few scares (amnio etc) so my anxiety has been through the roof. BUT the end is insight!!

    Good luck to you all who battle bipolar, depression, anxiety etc. It isnt easy, but doesnt make us any worse parents! xxx
     
  10. gmh

    gmh Well-Known Member

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    whats the advertisment at the bottom of my posts?? i didnt put that there
     
  11. Lauki

    Lauki Mummy and newly pregnant!

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    First off: Well done to you for getting to the low dosage of meds! That really is a great achievement and you must be so proud of yourself :flower:!

    I don't suffer from being Bipolar but I'm diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. Pregnancy has been a rollercoaster for me, major ups and major downs! But I think in the end it's taught me so many things and I've actually changed in a good way. Luckily I was off my anti-depressant meds before I got pregnant and I have amazing support from my husband which really helps me to cope. I also don't work at the moment, which doesn't put the stress of communicating/working with others on me too much so I feel much more comfortable and able to get on with things.

    I think it's an amazing thing we can be mothers, and I only think it's for the best! It makes you look at life in such a different way and I'm sure it'll change me for the better :).

    It's nice to know there's more people out there with these kind of 'issues'. If I google pregnancy+borderline personality disorder I only get some research about medicines. It's nice to know we can get some support on these forums :).

    :hugs: to you all!
     
  12. gmh

    gmh Well-Known Member

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    hey, im diagnosed with borderline too. iv done alot of therapy and DBT. so feel iv changed alot over the years. im also not working, which i feel guilty about. dont how i would have managed working full time though. so awesome to hear from someone else with he same diagnosis.
     
  13. Lauki

    Lauki Mummy and newly pregnant!

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    I do feel guilty about not working as well! Sometimes I feel horrible about it and I'm afraid people will judge me if I tell them I'd rather not work because I'm so afraid of getting stressed out and pretending I'm 'normal'.

    Most of the time I am fine and can just be happy, but if I get stressed or unhappy about things I feel extra pressure to pretend I'm fine, which only makes things worse! I am so lucky with my husband fully understanding and supporting me.

    If I'm being reasonable though I don't think we should feel guilty at all, after all we're growing beautiful little babies inside us and it's bloody hard work ;).

    Good to hear I'm not the only person on here with the same diagnosis, sometimes I feel like people don't understand if I get my major ups and downs about pregnancy, they all think I should just be extremely happy and never worry about the future, but it really isn't that easy for me!

    Glad to read that you feel you've changed because of therapy GMH :). I've had a good psychologist who just made sure I understood how important it is to have a stable lifestyle. It sounds boring to most people how I live my life, but it really keeps me going and makes me a happy person. I feel blessed with this baby on the way and I can't wait to become an awesome mummy. My flaws have only taught me a lot of lessons and I think I can surely use this knowledge to become a great rolemodel to my daughter!
     
  14. cyanidepill

    cyanidepill Well-Known Member

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    I have suffered from depression since I was 14 (i'm 30 this year). Until 10 months ago I was a very high strength Paroxetine - I don't think gps prescribe that any more, i think they favour prozac as the paroxetine was featured on Panorama and showed the suicide rate increased in patients who were on it. However I was always ok on it. I had terrible PND with my first baby.

    I cold turkey'd off the meds 10 months ago, simply because I lost my dad 3 years ago and wasn't coping with the loss, but I personally felt that i needed to feel the grief without the comfort blanket that the meds brought me. It was one of the hardest things i've ever done, but i'm still here.

    It does worry me that after i've had this baby that I may get PND - but the hospital i'll be having her at, and all my consultants are on alert in case it starts again.

    xx
     
  15. LadyHutch

    LadyHutch HutchMom

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    Bipolar mom and mom to be here.

    DX Bipolar disorder type 1, high cycling for 20+years. Medications before BFP: Valproate (EEEP, had to get off that quick!), seroquil and mirtazapine. Yep, I am the "I think I am an extraterrestrial that can fly and read minds when manic" type, and the "suicidal on those brief depression" type.

    Meds during pregnancy: just loads of DHA and EPA omega 3 and mirtazapine

    I've been extraordinarily lucky. I've been pretty stable, except very early pregnancy and a brief down spell for about 4-5 weeks around the end of 2nd trimester.

    Intend to stay on only mirtazapine thru breastfeeding if possible, but not going to disobey dr orders or make myself crazy in an effort to reduce or stay off meds.

    Bipolar moms and dads can be and often are EXCELLENT parents. Both myself and DH are bipolar, and love our kids to death. They also seem to be pretty fond of us.

    I was told not to have anymore children because of the severity of my BP. I consulted with my drs and still have regular check-ins and like I said, I've been really lucky.

    Anyone who judges me or my husband can suck it. Fortunately i have a very thick skin and can give idiots out there who say stupid shit a really good glossy eyed, blank stare. I had a dr in 2nd tri tell me i never should have gotten pregnant, and I told her she was a right bitch, that I was going to report her, and walked out. People who judge me on this can kiss my ass, because they are willfully ignorant.

    I do worry quite a bit about postpartum depression, but I am also super in touch with a shrink and therapist, and my husband, being a sufferer himself, will be monitoring me for any psychosis, with direct orders to admit me (in writing) if I get dangerous.


    I suggest making a plan of action for care if something should go haywire. I did and it helps tremendously just knowing it is there. My doctors (ob, shrink and family), my husband and my mom all have a copy on writing of what my wishes are if I should be mentally incapacitated at any time, detailing exactly what I define as incapacitated, and my wishes for involuntary admission, right down to when the cops should be called, when the dr should be notified, where my baby should stay, what ward I want to go to, what medications I am willing and unwilling to take, restraints that can be used, you name it, I've thought of it. I've been admitted before enough times and have suffered with this long enough to know when it's time for someone to step in and get me help. Often, I don't know or realize that I am floating over the deep end until it is too late. I've put in writing what my close circle and caregivers need to look for and expect based on my past experiences with suicidal days and manic days.

    I also mood chart. I keep a daily log and bring it to my doctors every time I go in to see one. Not only does this benefit me as I can readily see when I am slipping away from normal, but it helps my circle see as well. The biggest benefit is for me though, as I can take action quickly if things start slipping to improve my mood or relax.

    I can't say enough about the benefits of high doses of DHA/EPA Omega 3s. It takes a few months to see a difference, but I swear by it. Google about it and mental illness. The research is true, I am living proof.

    If you have any questions, feel free to ask me. I advocate for other suffers thru NAMI and have 20 years experience of my own. =)

    Finally, DO NOT take medication measures into your own hands. changing or stopping your medication without dr supervision can lead to a very deadly condition called seretonin syndrome, not to mention suicidal behavior. I see too many women who just up and stop their meds without asking their drs and it scares the crap out of me.
     
  16. Alideebo

    Alideebo Member

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    Wow there's so many inspirational stories here!!! Congrats ladies, seriously. If there's ever been motivation to prove a doctor wrong...
    I'm glad so many of you are feeling good in your pregnancies. I was worried initially, my doctor made me feel guilty for needing a dose increase when I was in first trimester, but if you let things like that get to you then it'll make it worse. There's no shame in needing help from medication!! If your pregnancy is going to be a lot worse without them then it's a no brainer!
    Very inspirational, thankyou :)
     

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