Being pregnant and having Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Being pregnant.Having a baby. They are a couple of things society seems to expect women to do. Furthermore society portrays pregnancy as a joyous time of redecorating, purchasing nursery furniture and baby clothes while having a wonderfully supportive partner who not only understands that you have a little person inside you, but will go above and beyond to treat you like a queen.

Don’t get me wrong, I am lucky. I have a wonderful husband who loves me deeply. I am happy I’m pregnant and look forward to becoming a mummy. But, my experience doesn’t seem to match what society expects or portrays.

In all honesty, I hate being pregnant.

I was never told that having Generalised Anxiety Disorder  (GAD) would make being pregnant so difficult, although upon reflection anyone with common sense would have realised.

From implantation onwards every twinge has had me worried. I’ve sat in the on-call doctor’s waiting room due to pain in my back, convinced I had a kidney infection. I’ve sat in A & E waiting for a mobile ultrasound machine because I was convinced I was having an ectopic pregnancy. I’ve called midwifery triarge so many times for so many different reasons that I can’t even remember them. That is just the start.

Since being pregnant my GAD seems to have gotten worse. I have sat in my GP’s office crying and wringing my hands begging for help. I have sat in an obstratrition’s office shaking as I have recounted my most recent feelings. I have sat with a Perinatal Mental Health Specialist trying to articulate my triggers, but my triggers are becoming more and more broad.

I have often found people don’t quite understand what GAD is like. It makes it hard to identify triggers because anything can become a trigger and the ‘fight or flight’ mode can kick in unexpectedly. GAD is like living on a knife edge; it is constant and it is sharp. It is hard to explain how living on a knife’s edge can be intensified, but pregnancy has managed to do it.