So I am getting married next month and the question everyone asks…… are you going to have kids straight away.
It a natural question for people to ask, I can normally get away without explaining everything going on behind the scene because I haven’t alway been a hugely maternal person, so can joke the question away. However truthfully i don’t know if i can, physically my can but by having bipolar there is a higher chance of having an episode after giving birth. Also I would have to go off my medication… I have been stable with no major episode for the last 3 years or so, so this is slightly nerve racking for me.
Adding to this I still have fatigue issue, currently my fiancé is making dinner each night as work tires me out. How can i get up and look after a baby when i am struggling to look after myself. Plus having a child puts more financial stress on you and stress may not be too good for me. I absolutely love my partner niece and nephew but this is different to having your own children.
All of this aside I think my partner would be an amazing Dad and I don’t want him to miss out on the chance because of my health.
Excerpt from an leaflet I found:
- What is the risk of becoming ill during pregnancy and after childbirth?
Women with bipolar disorder may become unwell during pregnancy but are at a particularly high risk of becoming ill following childbirth. Both manic and depressive episodes occur at this time and can be severe. Mood symptoms – elation, irritability and depression are common and, psychotic symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations can occur. When such symptoms are severe, it may be called an episode of ‘postpartum psychosis’ or ‘puerperal psychosis’. Other mood episodes at this time may be labelled as ‘postnatal depression’ or ‘postpartum depression’. Women experiencing postpartum psychosis or severe postpartum depression usually require admission to hospital but do very well with treatment.
Episodes of postpartum psychosis occur after approximately 25% or 1 in 4 births to women with bipolar disorder. This is many hundred times higher than for women who have not had previous psychiatric illness. Postnatal depression follows a further 25% or 1 in 4 births. Therefore, about 50% or 1 in 2 women with bipolar disorder stay well after having a baby and about 50% are likely to have an episode of illness….. (http://www.bipolaruk.org.uk/assets/uploads/documents/information_leaflets/bipolar_uk_bipolar_disorder_pregnancy_childbirth.pdf)