Hi all, and welcome back to my blog. Today I am talking to Rebecca. Rebecca is part of an online group that I am in. She has kindly shared her experience with social anxiety, and borderline personality disorder. Please show Rebecca some support. Leave a message in the comments and share this post.
Hi Rebecca, thank you so much fort taking part in this series. Can you tell me a bit about yourself
I am a 26 year old women who has one child, I’m currently unemployed due to disability. I am half way through a degree in psychology but have taken a year break due to having a baby.
Can you share with us a bit about your mental health condition.
I have two mental health conditions first being social anxiety, and the second being borderline personality disorder.
What Struggles do you/did you face?
My anxiety causes a huge strain I used to struggle to go out or travel far without having a panic attack although this has improved greatly since being pregnant and having my daughter. The borderline personality disorder is more complex it can make me feel almost numb where I have no feelings for anyone to overwhelming feelings in such a short space of time. It is very similar to bipolar, but the mood changes are more frequent. They can change in minutes, and days rather than weeks and months. I have impulse urges for me they are to spend money but have known of others have unprotected sex, doing drugs so it can be alot worse. Anything emotional I struggle with because of this mental health issue.
Thank you for sharing this Rebecca, having borderline personality disorder sounds like it can and has been a real struggle. When planning to start a family, did you have any worries, if so what were they?
I wasn’t planning to have a baby I had been previously told I could not get pregnant and ivf would be really low success rate for me so it wasn’t something I thought about.
How did your mental health condition affect you during pregnancy?
I found personally my anxiety got alot better and still has, my borderline personality disorder got slightly better but I often felt like I didn’t have an attachment to my baby. I did but on low times I felt we hadn’t connected and I was worried that I would fail her, or get postnatal depression because of how low I felt towards the end of my pregnancy. I was in alot of pain due to fibromyalgia so that took its toll on me.
Do you feel it has had an impact your parenting?
I believe it has as much as I try not to, I could have more patience (I don’t get annoyed but more irrated) I find crying for hours a real struggle in terms on patience, as I often just don’t no what to do, shes teething at the moment. I’m hoping my anxiety won’t impact her. I feel that she has helped me through some of it as I take her to baby groups, and we have days out together so that she doesn’t miss out.
Thats good that you manage to get out to baby groups and days out. I find that if I don’t get out, it has a real impact on my mental health. Did you receive any help from professionals ? If so what was it?
Isee a mental health nurse if I need to but mostly I self manage
What do you do to help yourself?
Breathing techniques, distraction and sometimes I need time alone where my partner has our daughter so I can recover from the day and unwind.
I find breathing techniques help me too when I am feeling overwhelmed. Do you feel like there is enough support and help for people suffering from mental health conditions?
I don’t. My mental health nurse is so quick to sign me off. The talking therapy service local to me offers groups and 1 to 1 counselling yet because I could never get to groups they wouldn’t give me a chance at the counselling.
Thank you Rebecca,and lastly what advice would you give to someone who has a mental health condition, but is planning on starting a family?
To take every day as it comes, having a mental illness does not mean you will be a bad parent. Good control and asking for help is a must to help get you through the struggles.
Thank you so much for taking the time to answer these questions for me. Thank you for being honest, and helping me share awareness.
Please show your support, and share this post. Tomorrow we are talking to Lisa from …. she has battled with post natal depression and PTSD. Post going live at 9am!
Much love 💕