Depression Plus Pregnancy Hormones Equals…Happiness?

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know I struggle with depression. I had the worst flare-up ever one month before I conceived. Thankfully, I landed myself an excellent therapist along with a nurse practitioner to help adjust my medication, and I trudged forward, determined to proceed with my conception plans.

I wasn’t sure how I would handle pregnancy hormones. Everyday life can be challenging enough operating in a mentally healthy state of mind. Throw depression and pregnancy hormones into the mix and…whoa, Nellie!

As is often the case with my preconceived notions, my preconceptions about the emotional terrain of pregnancy have not held up to reality. The fatigue in weeks 6 – 8 felt eerily similar to depression, except my head didn’t hurt. This Wednesday, I’ll be 9 weeks, and the fatigue and nausea are already starting to lift. I’ve cried twice in the past 3 weeks, which I’d say is a pretty healthy average for a pregnant woman.

I’m down to biweekly therapy sessions now. Yesterday my therapist introduced the idea of cutting back on medication–which scares me. I’ve tried weaning off medication probably 4 times in the past. Each time ended horribly. But I’m at least willing to cut back and see how things go. I have an appointment two weeks from today to discuss the idea with my nurse practitioner.

What would you do? Would you leave well enough alone and not rock the boat, or would you give it a try at a lower dose of medication? Also, a note to all you women who are blessed to not struggle with depression–if I can do pregnancy, you can do pregnancy. Don’t let it freak you out!


About The Preconceptionist

Where personal experience meets clinical and cultural preconceptions about birth and women's health.
This entry was posted in Depression, First Trimester, Pregnancy and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

39 Responses to Depression Plus Pregnancy Hormones Equals…Happiness?

  1. Shannon says:

    After my own heart, you are. Several months back I tried to taper off my medication, and it just…didn’t work. I was crying over nothing, anxious all day, the whole bit. I was miserable, and my doctor was worried. I knew I couldn’t handle trying to conceive in such a state, so I went back on it. I’m at a lower dose, which seems to be working, so I think I’ll stick with it when and if I get pregnant. I wish I could be medication-free, but intellectually I know it’s probably healthier (for me and a potential baby) to take the small risk that my meds present (and for what it’s worth, my Rx is one of the better ones to take while pregnant) than try to cope with crippling anxiety while pregnant.

    So, my advice is to trust your instincts. If you want to try a lower dosage for a few weeks, go for it. If you’re comfortable where you are, stay there. Whichever you choose will be the right decision.

  2. What would backing off the meds do? What are the benefits? Is it better for the baby? If it is I would give it a try..but if it’s not good then I would just let it be cause a stressed out mom can make a stressed out baby. Good luck in whatever you decide!

  3. Anonymous says:

    I may have no clue what I’m talking about in relation to your situation and your meds, but you don’t know until you try, if it’s bad, you know not to do that again. However, I have struggled with some depression, but mostly anxiety and I feel better when I’m pregnant. I feel content with life in general, I feel like things are going to work out, and I enjoy those I love around me so much more. When I am not pregnant, it’s back to anxious, not content with my life, looking for the negative instead of the positive. My baby is one month old and I miss my happier pregnancy emotions, although with this birth (my third), I have had a lot more support from family and friends and that has made a big difference.

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