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MY JOURNEY THROUGH MOTHERHOOD & MADNESS Postpartum Psychosis.

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Presentation on theme: "MY JOURNEY THROUGH MOTHERHOOD & MADNESS Postpartum Psychosis."— Presentation transcript:

1 MY JOURNEY THROUGH MOTHERHOOD & MADNESS Postpartum Psychosis

2 A “fairy tale” wedding… … Followed by much-hoped-for pregnancy & a new house! We seemed “prepared” for parenthood What could possibly go wrong?

3 Result: a healthy 4kg baby boy – but a seriously unwell mum Numerous “false starts” & two weeks overdue Failure to progress after gruelling 3 day “back” labour Cervix swollen & obstructed (from 9cm back to 4cm) Uterus exhausted Lengthy (and terrifying) emergency C-section followed by severe blood loss (3.5 litres) Extreme sleep deprivation We were physically shattered, but so grateful for James’ safe arrival

4 The media gives us: Reality: New motherhood was not how I imagined

5 Unbeknown to us, the “perfect storm” of risk factors had gathered… Within 24 hours… Psychosis Sleep deprivation Infection & fever (Unknown) family history Worries over breastfeeding Traumatic labour Previous episodes of depression

6 Catatonia & Delirium I’m sorry, I think I’m insane. I love you. I’m causing the end of the world.. I’ve killed everyone, but me, locked in this cell. I will slowly suffocate to death Where did my life end and this nightmare begin? Heart about to stop? Stomach about to explode? Did I die? Is this hell?

7 My baby was in the care of the nurses, going for daily walks with Daddy, in his shiny new pram. Even in a psychotic state, I was encouraged to spend time with James, under careful supervision. Admission to MBU: “there” but not there…

8 Daily visits from daddy.. … and James thrived I had moments of lucidity

9 A “break through” A session with the MBU’s Child Psychologist was a break-through. As she showed me how to make James smile, I started to see James as a real person, and not just a facet of my illness or a thing to be feared.

10 First home leave from the MBU – Christmas Day! A long shower, a simple lunch (just the 3 of us) and a chance to show James around his home for the first time. From this day, my home leave gradually built up until I only went back to the MBU for my formal discharge meeting at the end of January.

11 Home for good

12 Brought to you by… Midwife ObstetriciansGPHealth VisitorPerinatal Psychiatrist Child Psychologist Mental Health Nurse Auxiliary staffHusband & Daddy Our family PANDAS Paramedics Our friends & neighbours APPA&E staff Me & James Twitter & Facebook communities

13 KATHRYN CAN BE FOUND ON & FOR MORE INFORMATION ON PP, PLEASE VISIT Thanks for listening


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