to have a baby or not??

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beta
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 5/25/2007 1:54 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Guys.
 
I am actually a regular on the Colitis site.  I also suffer from depression and I have a big decision to make.
 
I am 34 years old & female.
 
I have suffered from Depression all my life but it is under total control with an antidepressant.  Since I went on the antidepressant when I was 27 my life effectively began. Up to that point I had been very unsettled with periods of deep depression.
 
I don't want to have a baby if I pass by depression on.  I don't want anyone to feel like that for even 5 minutes.  Alot of my own family suffer from depression, including my mother and one sister (out of 3).
 
I also suffer from a chronic illness and I worry about being able to care for a child.
 
I am actually not very maternal but I think that has something to do with the antidepressants.  I just am aware that I  have a decision to make in the next few years.
 
I would appreciate your honest comments.  I am very stable myself at the moment so I don't really need reassurance. 
 
I apologise if this topic has been covered before but I had a look at the past posts but couldn't find anything to cover this topic.
 
Thanks a million.
 
Beta
Diagnosed 1999 - Pancolitis -Currently in Remission
Osteopenia, Anterior Uveitis in left eye.
Imuran 100mg, Asacol 1600mg,1000mg Calcium,
 


TexasJen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 649
   Posted 5/25/2007 3:15 PM (GMT -7)   
I don't know your history. Are you married? In a stable relationship? At your age it is normal to feel the biological clock ticking and to worry about it. If you are in a stable relationship that can provide a Mommy and a Daddy for said child, then you just deal with it as any mother would. In this day and age, with women having a choice in conception, the decision becomes more difficult.

While I greatly admire the work that single parents go through in raising their children, I still do not believe it is the ideal situation for the children. There are so many genetic diseases that can be passed on to children, but making the decision to reproduce is ultimately up to you. Certainly depression is more treatable now that it was a generation ago. Who knows what will come in the next?

No doubt every single person reading your question will give you a different answer. You are the only one who can decide. If you are not in a stable, monogamous relationship, you may be worrying needlessly.
Living in the Republic of Texas minus a gallbladder, a couple of cervical discs, appendix, uterus, and 18" of colon; but living with my wonderful husband, 2 dogs, 1 cockatiel, and 2 gold fish. 


ShynSassy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3036
   Posted 5/26/2007 6:16 AM (GMT -7)   
Beta
I have severe depression,my mom has it,and my brother has it .My son suffers from ADHD.
But
I do not believe it was passed on,I believe it is the family settings. How we lived our lives. Simple as that.
I would not let your depression scare you from having a baby. And alot of people find that the new baby is just what they need to get better.

Shy
Mod- Depression

Chronic Depression, Panic Attacks,Anxiety Attacks,Anorexia
Meds I have taken throughout the years:Wellbutrin,Tranxene,Paxil,Prozac,Valium,
Currently taking none.
www.healingwell.com/donate


www.myspace.com/ShynSassy315

"I am woman,hear me roar one day and cry the next!!!"


faithfully4you
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 870
   Posted 5/26/2007 10:21 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi,
It is really difficult to try to give advice to someone that you dont know.  I will give you a brief history of what I have experienced and if you can relate to any of it, please consider it.
 
I am a single mom of 3 children, 20,14 and 6.  I am 42 and live with my youngest.  I dont work and have been disabled.  I have had major clinical recurrent depression for over 20 years which was excerbated by the birth of my first child.  My depression was initially diagnosed as postpartum depression.  Since then I have lived every day of my life with this horrible depression.
 
The positive side of being a mom is that there are times when my child(ren) keep me busy and it is hard to think about being depressed.  My first child was the only one that was planned so I became a mother unexpectedly.  Would I have had more children by planning, no.  I found that no matter how much I love my children, I would have never deliberately have had any after my first child.  I would never give them up but if I had the choice, the answer would be no.
 
I have always said that I wa never the mothering type and that I wanted my time for me.  Selfish, yes but having time for me is more important than anything else.  Now, please dont think of me as a bad person, I am just trying to be honest and upfront with anyone wanting to know the truth for me and being a mom.  When I am depressed I AM DEPRESSED!  I try not to cry or behave depressed in front of my 6 year old.  This adds to the depression because then I become agitated and angry and lash out at others around me, the person in line in front of me, the person looking for the exact change in the grocery line and on and on. I become an extremely angry person because I cant show my son my tears.  I know you say, but he sees this ugliness such as anger.  Yea, I know I think that too but I guess my twisted rationalizing is this, I would rather him see a person being strong (angry)(remember this is the stinking-thinking rationale) rather than the cry baby boohoo that I would be instead.
 
I just realized that I am rambling and I myself hate to ramble so I will leave you with this.  Depending on how you feel about your illness and the ability to take care of another human being other than yourself, I cannot give any advice but this is my thinking.  If I would be going through what you are and making decisions with what my experiences are, this is what I would consider.....What do I have to offer a new life that for the next 21+ years I will be responsible for..Do I have my own illness in check and willing to for at least for awhile put it on the back burner, or for that matter is that even a choice, with my depression, I am so ill with it that I know that I could not make it a backseat illness.
 
Good luck in your decision.  I am sorry I couldnt offer really anything of substance.  I just know that right now with that decision, I would not have another baby now or even in the future.  My depression has already taken too much away from me that I could give any more of me.
Teresa
"Faith is knowing you're in control
when your life is falling apart,
Faith is in that quiet assurance
I feel deep within my heart".


beta
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 5/28/2007 11:35 AM (GMT -7)   

Thank you all very much for your kind replies.

I am actually in a very stable relationship.  I have been with my Partner for 7 years and we will be getting married shortly.  He is very strong and capable and kind.  I think that bringing a little of him and a little of me (when I am well) into the world would be good for the world. 

I am very well since I started on the tablets a number of years ago so I don't really worry much about my mental wellbeing.  I know that for the foreseeable future it is fairly under control.

I could take care of a child but what I don't want is to be selfish about it.  I think many people decide to have children for themselves but as soon as the child is born it's not about us anymore.  I don't want the child to be born with Depression. 

Shy: I believe that it is hereditary.  I come from a very stable family backround, parents still together, never any fights etc.  We were given everything that we needed and we all turned out differently.  I have cousins with problems too.  I was brought up in the city.  They were brought up in the country in a stable family environment. I don't think anyone actually knows if it is or not but I really do believe that it is.

Teresa : Thank you for being so open and honest.  I know exactly what if feels like to become "agitated, angry and lash out at others" but fortunately not recently. I hope you begin to feel better soon. 

Geraldine

 

 


Diagnosed 1999 - Pancolitis -Currently in Remission
Osteopenia, Anterior Uveitis in left eye.
Imuran 100mg, Asacol 1600mg,1000mg Calcium,
 


Sadsong
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 344
   Posted 5/29/2007 2:30 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Geraldine -

I was having a similar conversation this morning with a friend at work.  It seems I've been struggling with the same kind of question lately, so thank you for posting it.  It seems to me that the best thing to do is listen to your heart.  I mean if having kids if something you really want to do, you should.  Especially if you're in a committed, loving relationship in which both of you are in it together.  I mean it sounds like you are already leaning in one direction, but worried that you'll pass on this dreaded disease.  But, remember there is also the possiblity of not passing it on.  It's risk, you just have to ask yourself if you're willing to take it.     


wmnak
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1123
   Posted 5/29/2007 6:57 PM (GMT -7)   

i could be a smart a** and say, "if you have to ask, you don't want one."  but that's a facile answer to a complex question.  there are a lot of variables.  let me give you a bit of my personal history as an example.

i grew up in a dysfunctional, abusive family.  i was what some psychologists call the "sacraficial lamb."  whatever went wrong in the family was my fault.  as a teen (back in the early 60s) my motheer took me to a psychiatrist and essentially said, "fix him.  there's nothing wrong with anyone but him."

like you, i have been clinically depressed for almost my entire life.  about 5 yrs ago i was diagnosed as bi-polar.  this dx was seconded by a second, independent, psychiatrist.

my wife and i have travelled all over the usa and eruope.  we have been places and done things that most americans don't even know exist.  but we have done it at the expence of not having children of our owm.  i will be d*mned in h*ll before i would put another sentient being through the h*lls that i experienced growing up.  child abuse isn't in the dna, but it is passed on in families from generation to generation.  depression is now considered a genetic disease.  why would i curse my child with abuse and mental illness?  not me.  no.  not in this life time.

this is my decision and my wife's.  when we first got together over 30 yrs ago, we talked about it and we have lived the lives we decided upon.

this is a personal decision.  i can't make it for you and your priest, rabbi, or minister can't make it for you.  we can point problems and benefits.  one thing i can say from personal experience, don't have a child thinking that it will "save" or "improve" your relationship.  Babies take over your life and magnify existing relational problems.

hope this helps.

warren


That light at the end of he tunnel?  It's an on-coming train.
 
 


beta
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 6/13/2007 2:25 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi all.

Thanks for your replies. 

Warren: I found your reply especially useful.  I think you put my fears into words and I am especially interested in the fact that you yourself made a conscious decision not to have children. I think most childless couples don't have children because they can't and it is not something you can talk to people about easily.

All my friends with babies are waiting for us to start reproducing, they say it's the best thing that has ever happened to them.  But again that is the point.  It may be the best thing for me and my husband but maybe not for the child.

I have told my husband (I got married since we started this thread) that if I get broody to take away my tablets so that I remember the issues that raise the question in the first place.

Thanks again.  It's good to know I amn't the only one with these mixed feelings.

Geraldine

 


Diagnosed 1999 - Pancolitis -Currently in Remission
Osteopenia, Anterior Uveitis in left eye.
Imuran 100mg, Asacol 1600mg,1000mg Calcium,
 


ShynSassy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3036
   Posted 6/13/2007 4:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Good luck and keep us posted!


Shy
Mod- Depression

Chronic Depression, Panic Attacks,Anxiety Attacks,Anorexia
Meds I have taken throughout the years:Wellbutrin,Tranxene,Paxil,Prozac,Valium,
Currently taking none.
www.healingwell.com/donate


www.myspace.com/ShynSassy315

"I am woman,hear me roar one day and cry the next!!!"


millsriver
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 7/13/2007 9:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Geraldine
As others have said, having a child is a personal decision and there are many people who have had challenges in their lives and have been able to still be good parents. The key is being able to keep your illness under control such as one would do with any other illness. The worst parents are those who have a problem ( of any type) but don't do anything about it and then kids suffer. I think the research is pointing more and more to that one can inherit a tendency for depression so your right to be concerned. However, there are probably not very many families who won't have had someone in their family tree who has not experience some type of mood disorder. One area that you should be aware of that pregnancy & the period after delivery can make depression worse. Currently many doctors (but not all)have the mom stop taking anti-depressants during the 1st trimester. There is research going on now to determine what is the long term effect of the these meds on the baby as well as how the mother does with her depression. So you would want to consult with your doctors about your medications before getting pregnant to see what they would advise.
I don't know what type of work you do but perhaps working with children might be a satisfactory alternative to having your own? I have several married friends who never wanted the total responsibility of having their own children but enjoyed working and helping children.

I believe that you listed that you had osteopenia-are you aware that there are reports out linking anti-depressants and osteoporosis? More studies will be ongoing so you'll want your doctor to keep tract of your osteopenia. My sister is currently taking a antidepressant and so is concerned but her doctor told her to continue on it as he will monitor both conditions.

It's great that your giving a lot of thought of what it takes to be parent-wish more people did!

Millsriver
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