How to Deal with Your Depressing Pregnancy Fears
This is supposed to be a time for celebration, happiness, and planning for something precious. No one wants to hear you complain, see you cry, or help you worry less. So how do you deal with your depressing pregnancy fears, when you have nowhere to turn? I felt like this for a few months, it’s something I’m not proud to admit. I eventually learned that embracing my thoughts and feelings, no matter how depressing and worrisome they may be, could be the type of healing that I needed.
Talk to Someone
Don’t ever let anyone tell you, it’s not ok to express your feelings and what you are going through. Everyone isn’t in your situation or have gone through what you are struggling with. It’s not fair for them to tell you, that you shouldn’t feel the way you do. I found out how easily people wanted to give me advice, even those that have never even had a child before in their lives , because they were tired of seeing me not glowing and super happy like the pregnant women that they see on television. I was struggling with feelings that I didn’t trust in the hands of no one else. I knew what I was expected to feel, act, and be, but that wasn’t what was happening to me at all. Instead of constantly disappointing the people that I cared about, I kept to myself. Isolation was the key to me not having to be upset with those I loved, because they didn’t get the fact that all pregnancies aren’t roses and sunshine.
If you are struggling with depression during your pregnancy, and need someone to talk to, here is a list of resources available to you. Don’t suffer in silence, when you can reach out to an unbiased person who wants to help.
American Pregnancy Helpline – http://www.thehelpline.org/
Crisis Text Line – TEXT “GO” TO 741-741 or http://www.crisistextline.org/
Postpartum Depression – 1-800-PPD-MOMS or www.1800ppdmoms.org.
Pregnancy and Newborn Magazine has a great article with a list of resources as well, check it out here: http://www.pnmag.com/pregnancy/serious-support-3/
Another way to deal with the depression for me was stepping up my faith. For those of you who are believers and attend a church, you should definitely consider getting more involved. By busying myself with something positive, such as church, volunteering, and being among those of faith; I was able to focus on the good I was doing, the service of helping others, and not my own personal issues. I remember a sermon about letting go of what you can’t control by Pastor Lance Watson (www.myspbc.org), which later on when I got home brought me down to my knees crying. This whole issue of being pregnant and not knowing if my baby was 100% healthy, or if my baby had issues that would come into light after the birth, made me distressed and scared out of my mind. No one knew or could understand what that felt like for me, but when Pastor Watson spoke about letting God work, I felt a sense of peace come over me, like there was nothing else I could do but let God work as he said. I had to learn that I can’t control it all, not even this pregnancy. That was probably one of the toughest lessons I had to learn recently, and thankful it all turned out ok.
Ask Questions & Do Your Research
I had some serious fears. I struggled with these fears day and night. Unlike my previous pregnancies, this one seemed filled with complications, assumptions, and unlikely outcomes depending on the test results. I was so afraid, and at 20 weeks I still am. Even though I accepted the fact that I can’t control everything, I still pray every day for a strong and positive outcome. I know that there isn’t anything I can do, and at this age (30) there are many factors involved that even I hadn’t considered. So my only course of action is to ask questions. I also have to do my research and check out what options are available to me and my family. My husband is there to support me, but the baby is in me, so it’s ultimately my responsibility.
I need to know what I can do as the mother and the vessel in which our child resides, to be a healthy place for the baby until he/she is born. It’s not enough to eat right and take my vitamins, but I also have to refrain from toxins, including toxic people and toxic environments. The fears I have are subsided with my ability to do everything I can to ensure a healthy outcome, however like I said before, you can’t control everything. Complications like Down syndrome or disabilities, aren’t something you can control. If you have to learn what the possibilities are and counter that with what you know about your own genetics, your chromosomes, and your family history.
I don’t know if it was fear and worry, but I did some extensive research to find out about myself and my family, to understand the possibilities of what could be happening to our unborn child. When the doctor gave us information, I immediately asked follow up questions to better understand what everyone was telling us, and I also went home to do further research of the things we discussed. I wasn’t afraid to ask questions, because I know that the physicians work for us, and are there to do their job. I cannot be afraid to ask questions, because it’s vital that I walk away with a thorough comprehension as to what is happening to our child and this pregnancy.
Don’t Give Up
As much as I wanted to give up and let go, I knew that I couldn’t. I have two other children to think about, that need me to be strong. They understand that they are going to have another sibling, and bringing a child into this world isn’t easy, but life still has to go on for them. My husband needs his wife to be strong. Pregnancy for him is a sign of strength and power in a woman, and I can’t break down at every sign of trouble or difficulty because I’m stronger and better than that. I wanted to give up, I’m not going to lie. It’s so hard to feel sick all the time, to be anxious, scared and worried about your baby, your health, and always looking for the finish line when you’re nowhere near it. It’s draining to feel this way, so I feared that this pregnancy would break me more than news that something was wrong with my child, however I can’t give up. I can’t allow myself to get wrapped up in the negativity, when I have a sliver of hope inside of me and this child. I pray constantly, I believe that God is watching and working, and I have a strong support system in my family at home. I won’t give up. No matter how difficult it can get, I know God won’t give us anything we can’t handle.
20 Week Pregnancy Update: Depression, Fears, & Down syndrome Vlog Video
In this 20 Week Pregnancy update, I discuss my issues with my current pregnancy, being sick, and the fear associated with worrying about my child’s health. I confess my feelings towards testing my child for Down syndrome and the anxiety and worry surrounding my family while waiting for the results. In this video update, I open up about feeling drained and sick during these first two trimester of my pregnancy with my third child.
Do you know of anyone dealing with complications during their pregnancy? Be a sympathetic and listening ear, without trying to tell them how to feel. Sometimes a person just wants some support, not necessarily advice. Although our first reaction is to solve a problem, perhaps all that is needed is a shoulder to cry on and an ear to hear someone out. Be that, nothing more.