BIPOLAR AND PREGNANCY?

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GSAVA1
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 8/16/2010 6:13 AM (GMT -7)   
HI.  MY WIFE IS BIPOLAR AND IS AFRAID TO TRY AND HAVE OUR OWN BABY EVEN THOUGH WE WOULD LOVE TOO! IS IT SAFE?  SHE IS AFRAID AND WANTS TO ADOPT BUT PART OF ME STILL WANTS MY OWN!  DONT KNOW IF I AM JUST BEING SELFISH OR IF ITS EVEN SAFE FOR A BIPOLAR WOMAN TO HAVE HAVE A CHILD?  EVERYONE INCLUDEING HER DOCTOR TOLD HER SHE CANT BE OFF MEDICINES.  I WOULD STILL LOVE AN ADOPTED CHILD BUT THERE IS SOME SPECIAL BOND WHEN ITS YOUR CHILD WITH YOUR TRAITS, ETC.  I DONT KNOW WHAT TO DO?

happy bill
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1132
   Posted 8/16/2010 7:15 AM (GMT -7)   

 

   Ok, take a deep breath. First i have seen on here that there are certain BP meds that are safe for pregnant women. I dont know the names but wiser heads than me on this should be along shortly to help you out.

   Second relax about the adopting thing. I have heard many people wh adopted say th esame thing, i didnt think ther ewould be a connection but now i love them like nothing else in this world. In fact i bet you would make a great dad if your amount of worrign over whether you would be a good dad or not is any guauge of it.

    Like i said, wiser minds than i will be along shortly

  Bill.

    


 
   "If Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade"
 
   "It isn't my fault that i am BiPolar, It is my responsibility how i treat it so that i don't hurt others or myself."  Happy Bill
 
   Meds. Respirdal  0.5 a day, more if needed.

tortoise11
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 2896
   Posted 8/16/2010 7:50 AM (GMT -7)   
Planning pregnancy with BP is definitely a challenge.  There might be a baby in my future, and my psychiatrist wants me to start preparing 6 months before conception. 
 
I have stayed stable off meds with a strict self-care program that is hard to maintain.  I have a 3 yr old son - before I was diagnosed - and I did just fine during that pregnancy (which was complicated).  So what my Dr. alluded to was weaning down my dose and being strict about self-care.  IF I have a problem, they can bump up my dose.  My medication take 6 - 8 weeks of slowly increasing the dose to get to an effective level.  It's not appropriate for crisis.  So staying on a low dose would protect baby from the potential of becoming unstable and having to use more risky medication.
 
I tend toward depression rather than mania anyways, and knowing that it is not a permanent condition, I think I would be "fine" to suffer through it.
 
So the big problem with pregnancy and BP is actually post-partum.  Giving birth changes how the body processes medication and can lead to concentrations that are too high or too low.  If mom is trying to breastfeed, to high is and issue.  If she is trying to maintain sanity, to low is a problem.  In addition, if mom is going back on meds, there is the whole issue of side effects and geting up to an effective dose.  Many women have bad cycling after giving birth that is hard to control.
 
I had a terrible experience postpartum - peaking 7 - 8 months postpartum and continuing until getting divorced triggered mania.  My Dr.'s could not control mood swings with medication.  My mood swings had a SIGNIFICANT effect on my son's wellbeing.  But also keep in mind that I had been on anti-depressants the last 2 months of my pregnancy - a HUGE no-no for Bipolars!  (Remember I was not yet diagnosed.)  I can't say how much of the problem was due to the medication or giving birth.  In addition I didn't know how to do self-care and WAS NOT taking care of myself.  I was under tremendous stress with slow healing from childbirth, my marriage falling apart and my son being sick.  I feel like I know the worst-case scenario and have information and support to get through a possible next time.
 
There is a young woman on here pregnant and off meds and having a hell of a time.  I'm sure she will have some insight to share.
Bipolar 1
Borderline Personality Disorder
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Panic Disorder
 
"It's never too late to become what you might have been."

LindzKaye09
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 174
   Posted 8/16/2010 11:54 AM (GMT -7)   
GSAVA1~ I am pregnant and off medication at this point in time. Things are not going very well. During my last pregnancy, 2 years ago, my moods were stabilized by the pregnancy, but this time they are getting worse. Every pregnancy is different, just like every mind is different. My doctors are in the process of figuring out the best medications to put me on, that will have the lowest affect on the baby. At the same time though, they are trying to get me on something that will work as fat as possible, seeing as though my moods are becoming increasingly unstable. I went through postpartum depression after having both of my children. I also had mixed states and almost left my husband and kids quite a few times, even though I love them all more than life itself. YOU and your wife need to talk to doctors ahead of time and get all the facts straight and figure out a plan and stick with it. She can have a child, but it will be difficult. Adoption is not the worst idea. I know plenty of people who have adopted and have been adopted and they are all loving families. I wish you two the best of luck. You two need to agree on a plan first and foremost. The more stress she is under, the worse off things will be, for everyone.

Lindz
I know I'm not perfect, and I don't live to be...But before you start pointing fingers, make sure your hands are clean. - Bob Marley

Bipolar I
OCD
Anxiety Disorder
PTSD
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