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10kDilsey 11-09-2005 09:31 PM

Is this PPD or what?
Hello all, I have a question for all the new and experienced moms out there regarding some weird thoughts I have been having. (side note: I have a 5 year old son and NEVER experienced this after his birth)

DD will be 3 weeks old tomorrow and although I am thrilled to have her (it took DH and I over three years of trying to conceive!) I have been having some pretty overwhelming fears lately.

For example: I would not take DD out in public for the first two weeks after she was born because I had this fear that someone would try to hurt her. It was completely irrational, but I had this overwhelming fear that a complete stranger would approach me, grab her and do something horrible. The images that go through my mind were so graphic and horrid that I just couldn't imagine subjecting her to the risks the outside world posed within my own imagination.

This week I have finally ventured out of the house and the fear is subsiding somewhat, but it is still very much there. I have also had an overwhelming fear of my own death. I have been quietly obsessing about the details of my childrens' care if something should happen to me while they are still small.

I guess the reason all this is so weird to me is because I have never been a fearful kind of person. I have been known to jump out of perfectly good airplanes, I am a scuba-diver, I have travelled throughout the world by myself without hesitation. Why am I falling apart now? Is this a weird type of PPD?

I know this is a really depressing start to a thread and probably incredibly disturbing but I was wondering if any other moms ever went through something similar. I think I am losing my mind.

cattieos 11-09-2005 09:34 PM

Re: Is this PPD or what?
I don't think this is abnormal, I think you are just worried for your childrens' health and future. I worry alot that somthing will happen to me first and then DH will let his parents raise DS if smething happens to him.
It's normal to not want to take a baby out at first, in fact you really shouldn'ttoo many germs and taking a two week old anywhere really isn't very fun.
I am 28 and my Mom still worries about someone taking me, or hurting me.
I think worrying makes you a good Mommy it shows how much you care.
If you are really worried though talk to your Dr that might make you feel better
Good luck!

Kiera1595 11-10-2005 05:40 AM

Re: Is this PPD or what?
LOTS of women have a new found sense of worry about their/their children's safety after having a baby. I remember my mom warning me about it maybe happening to me when I was pregnant with my 1st. I don't think that just that would be PPD.

I normally don't have a problem with it, but every once in a while I'll start thinking about something bad happening to my kids and I get very upset and start crying.

If these thoughts really start to affect your daily life, I'd talk to someone about it. But for now I think you're just a protective mommy.

jmcummins3 11-10-2005 08:30 AM

Re: Is this PPD or what?
It is normal to be concerned about your child's well-being, but if it's overwhelming, it could be PPD. My doctor said that if anything is hindering you from getting through your day, it could be PPD, which is hormone-related. It doesn't even have to have anything to do with the baby. I was diagnosed with PPD when DD was about 3 months old. I was shocked that's what it was because it had nothing to do with the baby. It was just heightened anxiety, worrying about things that were possible but not very likely, weepy a lot, picking fights with DH over stupid stuff that I normally wouldn't even think about but was overly upset about, and just plain didn't feel like myself.

Talk to your doctor about what you're feeling and see what they say. PPD isn't always thinking about hurting the baby, negative feelings towards the baby, not wanting to interact with the baby, or thinking about hurting yourself, which is the type that is talked about the most. It can rear it's ugly head in a number of forms, including heightened anxiety over things that are somewhat far-reaching, possible but not probable.

JenW67 11-10-2005 09:21 AM

Re: Is this PPD or what?
I agree with JMC. It is normal to feel afraid ( I myself started a post last weekend about this topic). It sounds though like you have some pretty specific images in your head. This is understandable given the lack of sleep and hormone stew rushing through your body. I think it is great that you have started going out and feeling ok about it.

It may help to talk with your doctor. He/She sees a lot fo women who just had babies and can help you find ways to feel better.

-Good luck,


10kDilsey 11-11-2005 09:09 PM

Re: Is this PPD or what?
THANK YOU! I have already made an appointment with my doctor and have actually started talking to a couple of girlfriends about this. Apparently, the anxiety attacks (yes, I finally have a definition for the frantic worry I experience!) I have been experiencing are fairly common in new moms and are commonly lumped into the general PPD category.

I am so relieved, thanks so much for the responses... I really thought I was losing my mind for a while there. I knew the images in my head were irrational, but the fear was so real. So long as I know that I am not alone in this, it is so much easier to handle.

jmcummins3 11-13-2005 06:53 AM

Re: Is this PPD or what?
I'm glad you're getting help. If you don't feel like yourself and can't talk yourself down from the anxiety attacks, know they're irrational, but can't help yourself, it is probably PPD.

Your doc may recommend meds or an herbal treatment. Most people do fine on them, but if you do need to take meds, make sure you know all of the possible side effects, as they usually show up several weeks after you start it and you may not realize it's from the meds. This happened to me. I went to my regular doc for exhaustion issues, thinking it was an unrelated problem since it really started about 4-6 weeks after I started the Paxil. 2 months and several tests later, she concluded that it had to be the Paxil. If I had realized it was a side-effect of the Paxil (I should have read the pharmacy insert but didn't), I could have called my OB/GYN and gotten the problem taken care of a lot quicker so I could get on with my life a lot sooner. I don't say this to scare you, but so that you realize that the meds don't get into your system for 4-6 weeks, so the side effects, if you have any, don't show up until then either. The Paxil did help with the PPD and the meds do work to help you feel more normal until your hormones level off and you can wean off of them.

Let us know what your doc says. Most women know the form of PPD that involved negative feelings toward the baby or not wanting to interact with the baby, but they are not aware that other things they may be experiencing can also be forms of PPD. That's the main reason I am so vocal about my PPD. I was shocked it was PPD because it had nothing to do with the baby or being a new mom. So, now I feel compelled to let other moms know what I found out the hard way. Good luck!

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