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Any moms dealing with anxiety after having their baby?

Posted by on Apr. 9, 2013 at 1:04 PM
  • 18 Replies
I was hoping to find some other moms in the same boat as me.
After having first son, almost 6 years ago now, I developed really bad anxiety. At the time I had no idea what was going on and talked to no one about it. To be honest, I felt like I was just going crazy and not realizing what the problem was, i was embarrassed and felt like no one would get it. Finally after two years I went and talked to my doctor and got the help that I needed.
WELL, now I'm back to where I was all those years ago after having my now 8 month old. Although I know what's going on its still really scary and hard to deal with. Unfortunately, I have no insurance until next month so getting the help I know I need im unable to get.
Whew, long i know but if you got to this point... thank you :)
So what i want to know is, how do you deal with your anxiety? I get this really heavy chest feeling and i just dont know how to calm myself down and relax once it hits. HELP!
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by on Apr. 9, 2013 at 1:04 PM
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by Barb on Apr. 9, 2013 at 4:54 PM

Hello! Welcome!

When I am aware of anxiety I force myself to breathe in and out slowly and to relax as I exhale. I start at my feet and slowly relax up my legs through my body and then my arms, neck, head. This not only makes me relax but also helps focus my mind.

by on Apr. 9, 2013 at 6:01 PM
Yes I had postpartum anxiety after my 3rd baby. I didn't want to leave my house, or even my bedroom! If I could just stay in my room, I felt much better. Well that's no way to live. I tried lexapro but didn't like how sleepy it made me so I quit. I had an appt with a counselor but i cancelled cause I was feeling better. Later I had wished I had kept the appt but never called back.
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by Bronze Member on Apr. 9, 2013 at 6:48 PM

Hi :)

I do! But with my first two I was fine and never had any problems like this. I've never had anxiety in my life. After my third was born (there's an 8yr age difference) I'm almost constantly in panic mode, and I hate it. I have insurance and haven't went to talk to anyone about it, I'm not really sure why... Hubby has suffered from anxiety his whole life and watching him try different meds to get it under control has me afraid of going. Which is completely silly, his doctor has helped him a lot. I just sort of try to power through it, stepping outside helps a lot, and splashing water in my face if it's really bad. I'm hoping mine passes on it's own. =/

by on Apr. 11, 2013 at 9:53 AM
2 moms liked this

Precious bundle of stress…

It’s not that you don’t love that precious, gorgeous baby. You would easily sacrifice your life for hers and you now understand why so many lionesses, of both the human and feline variety, would readily take on a bear to protect their offspring.

But, you are at the breaking point and you’re so tired you could literally sleep standing up. What can you do to take care of yourself, avoid that meltdown, and still feel like not quite the worst mother on the planet?

Well, one of the nasty little secrets we don’t seem to share with new moms is that stress after having a baby is quite real and nearly tangible. Not only are you sleep deprived, but the feelings of doubt that come naturally with being new at such an important job are bound to cause even the most secure person stress.

Get over the guilt. That’s step one. You need to make peace with the dust and forgive yourself for not being able to do everything. No one expects you to.

Well, that’s not true. You do. So, get over it. Step number one for dealing with the stress is to get over the feeling that you have to do it all. The dust bunnies will be right where you left them when you’re ready.

Step two is to stop doing everything yourself. People love to offer their help when there is a new baby involved. Are you insane, or why do you keep turning them down? Don’t want the offers for babysitting? Fine. Take them up on a modified offer. Learn to say, without cringing, “You know what I would really love? If you could swing by with some diapers and wipes, that would be terrific. I couldn’t thank you enough!”

Take care of yourself. Now don’t laugh, but you really do need to take a shower and have a nap. So, hand over that baby to somebody, the baby’s father will work just fine. He won’t break her. No, jump in the shower and let peace reign for a while.

If you’re too edgy to do that, hire someone for a few hours. They really do have professional nurses who will come to your house for any length of time and take care of your baby. I know you think that’s extravagant, but, as the saying goes, if you’re not good to yourself, you’re absolutely no good to anyone else either.

Take care of yourself. Yes, I know I said that already, but this is true on many more levels. Stress burns up great amounts of antioxidants in your body. Did you stop taking your prenatals? Your body needs nutrition, especially B vitamins and magnesium to counteract the effects of stress.

While you’re at it, grab some chocolate (better yet, have someone else do that for you). Chocolate is full of antioxidants and trace minerals, like zinc, magnesium, and potassium, and the effect of chocolate is to both calm you and make you a little more alert. Be sure to get the good stuff.

Look, you cannot do it all and the truth is no one expects you to. Your little one is only this age for a very small time. Trust me. I know, I’ve been there. It seems overwhelming right now, but, before you know it, this incredible time in your life will be over. So, let go of the guilt, forgive yourself, take care of yourself, and snuggle up with your little one for some serious R and R.

by Ruby Member on Apr. 11, 2013 at 10:00 AM
All the vitamin B's help. Buy the vitamins separately.
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by on Apr. 11, 2013 at 10:02 AM
I got it bad while I was pregnant with my second and it continues now. I go to therapy once a week and take klonopin
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by on Apr. 11, 2013 at 11:11 AM

I had BIG post partum issues after my son was born - I had depression, anxiety and irritability. Yoga helped a lot - and so did getting a part time  nanny to help with my kid (later I got a full time one coz I work from home).

by Cecilia on Apr. 11, 2013 at 11:27 AM

I don't have anxiety but I have become more of a worrier.

by on Apr. 11, 2013 at 12:01 PM

It's very common to have anxious thoughts after a major life changes --one woman described it as having her entire life torn into tiny shreds, thrown up in the air and now raining gently down around her...

There are lots of (free) ways to handle anxiety: one really fast one is to blow on the pad of your left thumb -hard, empty your lungs. Your breath and your thumb are engaged with your vagus nerve, which regulates your heartrate. You can slow your heartrate down, just by blowing on your thumb a few times.

Hold a pen or pencil between your teeth, sideways (like a pirate) --holding your face in the shape of a smile (no matter how you feel to begin with) alters your brain chemistry to match your expression: you'll feel happier and more calm in under 2 minutes.

Laugh. Fake it, at first. Make 'ha ha ha ha' noises, bending at the waist, with a big wide open mouth... like you're laughing hard. Inhale and repeat over and over --do it in front of a mirror, if you like. Even if you don't really laugh (which you might, because it's ridiculous), you'll feel much better in less than five minutes. Try it for 10. Think of it is internal exercise.

Go for a walk in the daylight, at least twice a day, for at least 10 minutes at a time. If you need eye protection from the sun, try lightly-tinted shades, or gold/pinkish lenses, to let lots of light in but kill the glare. The oxygen and the light will improve your mood and make it easier to manage your problematic thoughts.

The main trick isn't to find way to stop it once it starts. Like temper tantrums, it's best to figure out what's starting them and prevent that. Saves all that up-and-down chemistry that's so draining...

by on Apr. 11, 2013 at 1:24 PM
I think you should get a little me time alone as soon as you can. Maybe a one hour massage or mani pedi mimosa visit. With all that we get to handle as Moms it can become overwhelming and we just need a break from time to time. Chamomile tea if you can at night to help unwind from the stress of your day. Hang in there!
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