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    September 18, 2011

    Actual Real Life Dilemma That I Do Not Think I Am Blowing Out Of Proportion For Once

    Here's something I learned in the last year - last fall, to be precise: my body will turn on me, in the form of anxiety, EVEN IF I am 1) eating well and exercising as regularly as I can manage 2) not experiencing any larger-than-average outside stressors 3) everything is going well in my family life 4) everything is going well in the REST of my life. Even when I am at the height of my healthy game, even after training myself to notice and manage/conquer anxiety triggers, even when there is really nothing going on that would naturally make me anxious I WILL GET ANXIOUS. Especially in the fall. Huh!

    This is why I decided, after eight years of doing it on my own, to bypass the stigma and the sense of failure, and go straight to the meds. And AMEN. And once I got pregnant? After two pregnancies that verified my own personal health fact that I will be nuttier during pregnancy than at any point in the six months after I give birth? MORE PILLS, PLEASE. To hell with stigma; the difference between my raving, loonypants, irrational fears Molly pregnancy and this simply-physically-uncomfortable pregnancy is HUGE.

    But now I am trying to figure out if I should wean myself off of them before/around-ish Third Baby's birth. WHAT DO YOU THINK? 

    I've been fine taking them during pregnancy because 1) my doctor says it's fine and 2) I know I'd be a mess. I am LESS fine with taking them while breastfeeding because 1) people generally seem to frown on that and 2) I'm pretty sure I WOULDN'T be a mess. The last two times I had a kid was an Instant Anxiety Fix, I'm not exaggerating at all. With Jack it stayed away for a good six months, with Molly it was two YEARS (I think because I was running. Just a theory.) 

    I wouldn't worry about the breastfeeding thing. I'd be fairly confident in my hormones for a while. I also think I would have an easier time losing weight/not eating everything in sight if I weren't on meds. (Shallow? Perhaps.) I could see how long it takes this time to revert to, uh, normal. And if I felt anxious again there is no doubt I would go racing back for a prescription, because I am OVER doing this on my own OVER OVER OVER. 

    My fear with that is ... things are fine right NOW. I've read a lot of stories where people have a hard time going back on the meds (and to be honest, the whole first month or two BLOWS) and sometimes the original one doesn't work and blah blah blah. I know that even if I keep doing what I'm doing there's still the possibility that I will need to change it up, but it actually feels pretty frightening to start all over again. And I am pretty sure I will need to do that at some point. 

    I could, perhaps, just decrease my dosage after the baby is born. I did increase it just a bit when I got pregnant (because I am from Opposite Land, where the post-partum insanity happens WHILE pregnant.) I suppose a missing piece of information is: how much WOULD it affect the baby? I am loathe to google this. I have a doctor appointment tomorrow, will ask then.

    If I had good reason to think I would be anxious after giving birth I would happily - CHEERFULLY! - put this kid on formula and go on taking my meds. I have no issues with formula, other than it being Not Free and also Bottle Washing Sucks. Breastfeeding, even though I never really grew to love it, REALLY worked for my lazy butt. And it IS better for the baby and YES I want to do what is best for my baby, but what is REALLY best for my baby is to not be CRAZY. 

    Right now I'm leaning towards going off the meds and Seeing What Happens. But I am not feeling particularly brave about it. I am pretty intimidated by the day, even if it is two years out, when I will be anxious again and have to go through this whole rigamarole again. I would love to know if you've found yourself in a similarish position and what you decided. Aaaaand GO!

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    Comments

    I think Seeing What Happens sounds good to me. I haven't yet been in a similarish position, but your logic and reasoning sounds quite logical and reasonable to me. And I definitely think one of the most important things for babies is a mother who is happy and functioning. :)

    I have no experience, but your plan makes sense to me. Stupid brain chemistry.

    No advice from the Childless One, but *HUGS*

    You're not worried about the transfer of meds in the breastmilk, right? Because your physician says it's fine right now, and you're giving more meds to the baby in utero then you would be via breastmilk.

    I haven't been in this position, but am thinking of and praying for you. xoxoxo

    Yeah, I'm with Sarah here. Why is it that things that are fine during pregnancy are suddenly not okay during breast feeding? Isn't the kid getting more of it in utero than through nursing? Which is to say, if the doctor says it alright I might go ahead and stay on them (lower the dosage maybe) to avoid having to start it all up again at some point.

    Maybe I should be asking my dad all this though, seeing as he is the clinical psychologist and I am not.

    Thank you for this! I, too, struggle with anxiety (though no kids yet) and it really sucks. With my doctor's advice I weaned myself off meds, but you're right, starting all over again is no fun. I would say since you know your body's tendencies, go off them when you have the baby. Instead of waiting for the anxiety to come back, maybe start the meds after you're done breastfeeding.

    After two pregnancies, I think you know your body pretty well. I would wean and hope #3 is exactly like #'s 1 &2. I am the person who gets terrible bad after giving birth, and the meds are more important than ever. After two pregnancies, I am certain of this fact. So that's what I would do if I were you. Going back on, does suck. But it sounds like the odds of it being better after baby are good.

    I love that you acknowledge the fact that the MOST IMPORTANT part of all of this is

    "it IS better for the baby and YES I want to do what is best for my baby, but what is REALLY best for my baby is to not be CRAZY."

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