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Unread 10-18-2001, 09:49 AM

I was just wondering if anyone has had any counseling through this either pre or post op and if you have, what type.

I plan to go somewhere for some counseling. Haven't decided where yet. I know this board is a tremendous help... I know I will be so depressed when I get this done that I want to make sure I do the counseling as a precaution before and also for coping after. My Dr said meds aren't out of the question but NO WAY.... I know I can get through this. It's just that my family just doesn't get what the big deal is.... My husband is very supportive but I think he just wants me to have a flat stomach! My mil has been through this so she thinks oh it's no big deal.... My sil just had a baby and it feels like they are constantly throwing it in my face..... I go to the store and see baby stuff EVERYWHERE.... But... I'm ready to get rid of the cramps and bleeding and all that stuff you all know too well ....*sigh* thanks for letting me vent....
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Unread 10-18-2001, 12:55 PM

This is hard stuff, and counseling is always a help to get through hard times, but please don't assume you will be depressed after your surgery! By all means talk to your doctor, but also remember that this can represent a new, pain-free, healthy life and future for you.

I am NOT minimizing the emotional effects of the surgery...and if you feel that counseling will be helpful I think you should make arrangements before hand. Maybe you can bring your husband along to some doctor appts, so he can get the full picture. Just keep in mind that you will be free of so many medical problems and issues, and you can start to get on with your life without the burden of feeling horrible all the time! This is a good thing...most of us have had this surgery for its life-enhancing reasons.

I can tell you that I have never felt better...had my TAH/BSO in March, and I'm looking at this as an opportunity to be a new, healthy me.

Please do get some help if you feel you may need it, and also remember you can always post here...Aching Hearts is a wonderful forum for help with many issues.

Sending you a big hug and hope for your healthy self!!!

Unread 10-19-2001, 01:23 PM

Hello sheila,

Counseling is a great idea. I think you are doing a great favor to yourself in searching out a good counselor now.

As for your family's understanding, well, the simple fact is they can't understand. Its not that they don't want to its just impossible for them. Even you MIL who has gone through it herself is no one to gauge how you are to handle it. Everyone's emotional and physical state is unique. The circumstances of your lives radically change the situation as well. My mother had this surgery as well and tried to compare hers with mine. There is no comparison, she had three children I have none. This is a heart wrenching surgery for some. For some it is a tremendous relief and I am happy for those who see it as a relief, yet I can only identify with their point of view to a very small degree.

Like you, I have had a very difficult time with this surgery. I am 4mnths post and physically I feel wonderful, emotionally... well, lets just say I am a work in progress. I sought out counseling shortly after my 6wk recovery period when I realized that I couldn't do it alone this time. Now, you have to understand that I have always believed myself to be a rock of strength and have had people depending on me for some time now. It was a horrible realization to find that I couldn't 'pick myself back up' from this one. The reason being, it isn't just the surgery. This surgery carries alot of emotional baggage with it but it also has the horrifying quality to drag up all the old heartaches from your past.

Family and friends who are pregnant are difficult to deal with. It does seem that they are 'flaunting' their pregnancies but it is more likely that we are super sensitive to the fact that we can not bare a child. It is very difficult to be around joy filled people when you want to hide somewhere until this whole thing blows over.
You are not alone in your feelings. Sheila, please do not cut yourself off from medicinal help for depression. I thought I could do everything on my own, I didn't need anybody or anything to get me through life. I was wrong and I am only now begining to see how much. Taking meds for depression is not a weakness. It shows great strength of character because you are woman enough to take control of your life despite ignorant people who are prone to critisize something they don't understand. A wise woman told me to think of it like taking a pill for your broken heart. Or, If you had high blood pressure, wouldn't you take a medicine to stabilize it? Meds may not be necessary at all but don't cut off your options out of fear.

I do know how you feel, you are definitely not alone in this whole thing. Please, feel free to e-mail me anytime. I would be happy to lend an ear or a shoulder. I also invite you to visit the 'aching hearts' forum where I usually hang out.

Hugs & prayers,

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