I am #Nobody’sPatient

I just read my lovely friend Emma’s latest post on one of the most recent #MatExp campaigns, #NobodysPatient and felt compelled to write. I can feel months and months of frustration and anger and sadness bubbling under my skin as I sit here and I think WHY did I not see it? WHY did I not speak up? WHY did I allow myself to fall through the cracks? I am nobody’s patient. You could be nobody’s patient. Our daughters could be nobody’s patient. Changes are needed and that starts now.

I am nobody's patient_Ghostwritermummy.co.ukDuring my fourth pregnancy, I battled with some demons. I started out so positive, so determined to make this pregnancy count. My last chance. I needed to get it right. I needed to settle a score. I needed to trust in my body and my abilities and I needed to see it through to the end. For me, that end was a vaginal birth. I can’t say ‘normal’ or ‘natural’ but I can say vaginal. I did not want to end up on an operating table, and I have so many reasons for that.  Control. Choice. Power. I needed it all this time.

I was floored by HG, and I never really realised just how much it affected me. A friend recently commented that she barely saw me during my pregnancy and that is all down to the fear that seeped into my bones. I was literally terrified of being stranded somewhere, vomiting around strangers and wanting to curl into a ball far from home. I suffered anxiety attacks and all I wanted to do was hide away. I wasn’t poorly enough for hospital admission once the anti sickness meds kicked in, so I was nobody’s patient. Nobody’s concern. Nobody’s priority.

But what they couldn’t see was that inside, I was slowly grinding to a halt.

I wasn’t coming at this with three previously positive pregnancies under my belt. I was coming at this with the spectre of birth trauma ever looming over my head. Like a creeping monster it is always there. Always ready. Always willing. It will take me at any time and there is nothing I can do. It’s in my notes, but it’s invisible. I was nobody’s patient. A very weak VABC patient with shaky mental health suffering a HG pregnancy. Nobody’s patient.

And then.

And then IUGR. Then my baby was at risk. Then our world came tumbling down. This baby that I had fought to keep, fought to carry. This baby with whom I was already fiercely in love with. This baby. This baby might not make it. So many questions. So few answers. Would she make it out alive? Would she have special needs? Would she be in hospital for some time? Would she be transferred to the hospital where my son’s horrendous birth occurred? Would we be able to take her home? So many fears and doubts and tears.

I am nobody's patient_Ghostwritermummy.co.ukI was nobody’s patient.

I wasn’t put in touch with people like the Pregnancy Sickness Support charity. I had to find them myself.

I wasn’t referred to the VBAC clinic. I was turned away instead.

I wasn’t referred to the perinatal mental health team. I was ignored.

I wasn’t given any information or guidance on IUGR, or the neonatal unit, or SCBU. I was forced to google for the answers I needed.

I was nobody’s patient.

And people ask me why I share my story. Mainly, for me. So that I can look back and I can remember the small moments, the big moments. The things that are making me the person I am. But also because I was so alone. I was so scared. I was so so isolated. And I don’t want others to feel the same way. Because if there are more of us standing up and saying ‘I am nobody’s patient’ then surely  change will have to happen. And we must fight to make sure that it does.

Please follow the #MatExp campaign on Twitter and see how you can get involved.

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37 Comments

  1. May 11, 2016 / 8:06 am

    This is sad to hear. Thankfully while I had HG I was then also diagnosed with antenatal depression. I was fortunate enough to be really looked after. I’m sorry your story wasn’t the same as mine x
    Ally Mother Under Measure recently posted..Am I failing as a parent?My Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 11, 2016 / 12:42 pm

      I’m glad you were given the support you needed. Many women are. Sadly though some still fall through the cracks and these are the women we need to speak up for xxx

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 11, 2016 / 12:42 pm

      Thank you Donna! Sadly there is still so much I haven’t written about but maybe one day. I think it is so important to give a voice to women who feel they cannot speak up. I really hope change is imminent xx

  2. May 11, 2016 / 10:22 am

    I think you’re really brave for sharing this and i think it’s really important to use our voices as bloggers to speak up about issues like this, hopefully campaigns like these and charities will help mothers like you not fall under the radar. Well done on writing a brilliantly eloquent post, you’re a strong woman

    Cydney x

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 11, 2016 / 12:40 pm

      Thank you so much. I’m determined that women who need the support are given it and I have no doubt that this will happen soon xx

  3. May 11, 2016 / 10:26 am

    Shocking that you weren’t given the support you needed then at such an important time x

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 11, 2016 / 12:40 pm

      Yes I agree. Too many women falling through the cracks xx

  4. May 11, 2016 / 10:38 am

    I always feel like crying when I read your posts, they are so real, it’s nearly 16 years since my boy was born & I sometimes feel angry about how I was treated. I think we survived only by the grace of god. xx
    Lorraine/Nortonmum recently posted..Talk about it Tuesday – 10 May 16My Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 11, 2016 / 12:39 pm

      I’m so sorry you had such a terrible time. For years and years women have suffered and stayed silent but I truly believe we are on the brink of change. I speak to so many HCPs who are committed to making maternity services better and I can only hope that this happens xx

  5. May 11, 2016 / 1:18 pm

    Oh my goodness this sound horrendous. Sounds like you really needed support and you were failed. I was asked to attend so many different talks etc when having my 2nd due to my horrendous first birth. I felt so supported and am very sad that you had nothing. xx

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 12, 2016 / 2:04 pm

      Looking back now, I should have questioned it but I didn’t. I’m hoping changes come around quickly xx

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 12, 2016 / 2:02 pm

      Thank you xx

  6. May 11, 2016 / 5:21 pm

    Oh my god, I can’t believe this happened to you, it’s so sad. Hopefully by writing this you’ll raise awareness and it will help others in a similar situation X

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 12, 2016 / 2:00 pm

      This is why change is needed, because my story is just the tip of the iceberg.Thanks so much for reading x x

  7. May 11, 2016 / 9:52 pm

    I am so sorry to hear that you weren’t given the support you needed at such an important time. I have been crying through your whole post. Thank you for sharing, you’re experience and I admire how strong you are and what you are doing for others. xx

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 12, 2016 / 1:59 pm

      Thank you so much for such a lovely comment x x

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 12, 2016 / 1:59 pm

      I am so glad you got the help and support you needed. It really makes such a difference doesn’t it? x x

  8. May 12, 2016 / 11:32 am

    It’s great to raise awareness for this and I will jump into twitter to read other people’s stories. It’s sad you had to go through this.
    Janine Dolan recently posted..Lunch Punch for Picky EatersMy Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      May 12, 2016 / 1:58 pm

      Thank you. Let me know if you’d like to get involved xx

  9. May 12, 2016 / 2:39 pm

    Wow you are so brave sharing this well done for speaking out I hope people find comfort from this post and also speak out I am a sufferer of anxiety and it can bring very dark moments I send you love and strength xx
    Leonii amber recently posted..Instagram:AprilMy Profile

  10. May 15, 2016 / 7:49 am

    A great post for a great campaign. I think if more of us told our stories, things may eventually change.
    Kizzy recently posted..Handmade Blue Cheese BurgersMy Profile

  11. May 30, 2016 / 10:16 am

    I am so sorry that the healthcare system failed you. It really does pain me to read experiences like this. Thank you for sharing x
    Zoe Alicia recently posted..Calm: App and Book ReviewMy Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      June 3, 2016 / 6:32 am

      Thank you so much for reading xx

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      June 3, 2016 / 6:29 am

      That is so kind, thank you. xx

  12. May 30, 2016 / 7:48 pm

    Really sorry to hear you have been failed by the system, sounds like a god awful experience. This post will surely help others, good luck with your campaign xx

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      June 3, 2016 / 6:29 am

      Thank you x x

  13. May 30, 2016 / 8:39 pm

    Oh my goodness! So sorry you didn’t get the support you needed. I had gestational diabetes and was carefully monitored throughout my pregnancy…..BUT my actual labour and delivery experience was a different story…I don’t think I got the care I needed.

    Will check out the campaign.
    Fozia S recently posted..Project 366 – Week 21My Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      June 3, 2016 / 6:28 am

      Please do take a look and let me know if you’d like to get involved. I’m sorry your experience wasn’t great xx

  14. May 30, 2016 / 9:03 pm

    It must be really horrible to fall through the cracks and feel so so alone and even when you realise why you feel rotten there is nothing you can do about it. I hope that this is read by others and that it can help at least one person get the help they are looking for. Well done for being brave enough to share it.
    Elaine Livingstone recently posted..Bit by BitMy Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      June 3, 2016 / 6:27 am

      Thank you. I hope it can help too xx

  15. June 2, 2016 / 9:06 am

    Thank you for sharing this, it sounds like you didn’t have a good experience. I thonk blogging is such an important way to spread the word these days x
    Viki Marden recently posted..Mummy + Me • May 2016My Profile

    • ghostwritermummy
      Author
      June 3, 2016 / 6:22 am

      I agree. There is so much power in our hands when we speak up xx

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