OB class makes me depressed...

  1. I am currently in my OB/Peds semester of my ADN program. This is already a hard semester for everybody, but I have found that OB is particularly hard on me emotionally.

    I am a transgender woman (MTF) and so am practically infertile. I will most likely never carry a child, and by now the chances are low that I could even produce enough sperm to conceive a child for someone else to carry. I have known for a long time that my best option for ever being a parent was adoption, and I thought I had (mostly) accepted that.

    However, in the last couple of weeks in particular, I have been thinking more and more about the parts of parenthood and childbirth I'll never get to experience... Our lecture on breastfeeding today in particular really got to me. I know there's some research now on induced breastfeeding, but it seems so improbable that I would ever even get the opportunity.

    I know there may not be a ton of other trans nurses on here, but has anybody else felt similarly going through OB class due to other infertility issues? I feel very alone right now and I feel uncomfortable talking to any of my friends from school about this.
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    About erikathered

    Joined: Oct '18; Posts: 1; Likes: 1

    23 Comments

  3. by   Wiggly Litchi
    I'm not infertile per-se, but in an asexual relationship with a guy that doesn't want children.
    I've made peace with the fact that I'll never carry children and it was hard at first, but I'm okay with it now. I do get maternal pangs sometimes (not in OB class yet, but still...) and I remind myself that I still have so much I can do to satisfy that nurturing side. Maybe I'll take a job in peds? Maybe I'll just take care of adults? Who knows!
    I'm not sure what I can say to comfort you because to be honest I get tired of being told "Oh, you'll change your mind." or "Oh but there's always adoption!" That being said, if you ever need to vent, I'm a PM away
  4. by   missmollie
    I had a hysterectomy four weeks before my OB class started and I too was surprised at my feelings. I always volunteered to rock any baby, no matter how fussy, and it really helped to provide that kind of care to an infant. Offer to rock an infant and enjoy that time.

    There are many times in nursing when you experience sadness, anger, exasperation, happiness, and joy. It helps to have a way to deal with those emotions including exercise or a hobby. I know how difficult nursing school can be, but if you record your lectures, maybe listen to the lectures while taking a brisk walk for an hour.

    These feelings will pass, but it doesn't diminish the feelings you currently have. I'm sorry you're going through this, but enjoy the moments that may be available to you. Best of luck in school!
  5. by   Luchador
    Quote from erikathered
    I am currently in my OB/Peds semester of my ADN program. This is already a hard semester for everybody, but I have found that OB is particularly hard on me emotionally.

    I am a transgender woman (MTF) and so am practically infertile. I will most likely never carry a child, and by now the chances are low that I could even produce enough sperm to conceive a child for someone else to carry. I have known for a long time that my best option for ever being a parent was adoption, and I thought I had (mostly) accepted that.

    However, in the last couple of weeks in particular, I have been thinking more and more about the parts of parenthood and childbirth I'll never get to experience... Our lecture on breastfeeding today in particular really got to me. I know there's some research now on induced breastfeeding, but it seems so improbable that I would ever even get the opportunity.

    I know there may not be a ton of other trans nurses on here, but has anybody else felt similarly going through OB class due to other infertility issues? I feel very alone right now and I feel uncomfortable talking to any of my friends from school about this.
    Ug. My wife and I never wanted kids. Breast feeding? Did they have a part in that lecture how the women now have stress incontinence for the rest of their lives? That's downright magical.

    Every couple I know that has kids are haggard and stressed for money. Watching my brother's kids wreck their lives did it for me. **** that.

    And research indicates that couples without kids are happier than those with them.
    Comparing couples with and without children, researchers found that the rate of the decline in relationship satisfaction is nearly twice as steep for couples who have children than for childless couples.
    Want to save your marriage? Don't have kids | Opinion | The Guardian


    I'm sorry you are sad and maybe consider adoption. But. . . .hard pass for us.
    Last edit by traumaRUs on Oct 13
  6. by   Mrs.D.
    I'm sorry, I'm not transgender, so I don't know if this will be helpful or not, but...

    My husband and I do not like children and have no interest in raising one. We have been married for almost a decade and still do not want them. I had a breast reduction (in September, actually) because I finally had enough of them, knowing I would never become pregnant.

    That's being said, I still mourn the fact that I'll never be able to use my breasts to feed an infant. I'll never see those milk-drunk smiles on my own baby. I'll never feel the excitement on whether the sensation I feel is gas bubbles or the baby finally kicking. I'll never see my husband get on his knees before me to listen to the baby inside me, or feel it move. I've had to talk myself down from it before. I definitely still mourn never being able to have these experiences. I know I'm choosing this, while you unfortunately have no choice, but it still makes me sad from time to time that I'll never have the first hand experiences.

    Having that experience is not a good enough reason for me to have kids. And I'm sure that if you want children someday, NOT having that experience will not stop you from having them. We all have our struggles, I guess. I hope that the pain/sadness goes away for you sooner than later.
  7. by   Miss.LeoRN
    After our OB class I was pretty much just in shock I even survived childbirth.

    I can offer much but support. I have three of my own (and sadly for certain people, no they didn't wreck my life and no were never stressing over cash). I don't think you have to carry a child or beast feed to satiate a maternal instinct. You're going to be an amazing mother regardless. Perhaps instead of focusing on what you won't experience, like almost dying or utter misery of just generally being pregnant (seriously it sucks; keep a list of everything your going to be able to offer your future children. I'm sure what you can offer and what you will experience far out weighs what you won't.
  8. by   Bonstemps
    Quote from Luchador
    Ug. My wife and I never wanted kids. Breast feeding? Did they have a part in that lecture how the women now have stress incontinence for the rest of their lives? That's downright magical.

    Every couple I know that has kids are haggard and stressed for money. Watching my brother's kids wreck their lives did it for me. F*@$ that.

    And research indicates that couples without kids are happier than those with them.

    Want to save your marriage? Don't have kids | Opinion | The Guardian


    I'm sorry you are sad and maybe consider adoption. But. . . .hard pass for us.
    Please be more thoughtful with your responses.

    This is very insensitive. OP is in a situation in which she does not have the ability to make the choice to have children naturally - we are talking about CHOICE - not about just wanting to have children. I understand what you are saying but I'm slightly appalled by it.

    I'm very sorry to hear you are struggling OP; I am not a transwoman, but I work with many transwomen and they have shared with me similar concerns, fears and difficulties. Would you consider seeking out a support group?

    The only close personal experience I have had re: this topic is helping my friend, who has become infertile due to cancer, talk through the loss. I fully support you and whatever steps you wish to take, and yes adoption is always an option. I hope you may find comfort in the fact that there are women like you out there and that these groups exist.

    Also, this may be too personal, but have you talked to a specialist in fertility re: your remaining sperm?

    I wish you luck and hope you find the space to talk about this; I am sorry I cannot help in a more meaningful way.
  9. by   BiscuitRN
    I'm infertile. I found out maybe 6 months before my OB clinical. Of course, your situation is more definite as there's always the small chance I could somehow conceive, but it was still hard for me. It's that cry-in-the-car kind of sadness. It's the mourning what you never had but always imagined. It's seeing someone bring this little baby to life and thinking "God I can't wait to do that!" then remembering that you probably won't. It's soul crushing. I think what helped me most through all of this (not just OB clinical but having a life where I may not be able to have a baby conventionally) is first speaking with a therapist--most colleges have free therapy--and also seeing "unconventional" families. Same sex couples who have used donor eggs or sperm, single parents or couples who have adopted, families blended by marriage/remarriage. When you see those parents who might not have a biological connection to their kids love them fully and create a beautiful unit of people who love each other unconditionally it's easier to swallow the pill that you might not have the "conventional" family you'd once dreamed of but you can still have a wonderful, beautiful family and be an awesome parent.

    It's a lot of soul searching, a lot of tears, a lot of realizations. Good luck. You'll make it through.
  10. by   Katillac
    I was in the middle of Maternal Child Health when I found out my son and DIL were pregnant with my first grandchild. It slammed into me at that moment it was very unlikely I would ever have another child. Not that I had planned or wanted or even thought I might have another child before that moment, but for some reason that was the moment I realized it was 99% sure I would have no more children.

    Illogical as it might sound, that was a big loss to me. I'm thinking there must have been a thought in some dusty corner of my mind that I would have another baby. I found I needed to acknowledge and wholeheartedly grieve the loss of that loss before I could move on. I also needed to confront the shoulds: I should be grateful for the children I have, I should just feel happy for my son and his wife, I should have done a better job with the kids I did have. Those things might also be true, but they didn't mean my sadness wasn't valid.

    In clinical for that class, I had a patient who had an emergent C-section. My peers were surprised she was sad and withdrawn; she should be happy with her healthy baby. But because of the loss I was feeling I understood totally that she was grieving the loss of her dream of her birth experience, at home surronded by family, friends and midwife. I felt like my being in the middle of grieving the loss of my fuzzy dream increased the empathy I had for her. It wasn't easy, I felt raw and vulnerable through it, but in the end I think the experience with her helped me resolve my own sadness.
  11. by   Borninbahamas
    There is a way to get through this. You have to be who God created you to be.
  12. by   Bonstemps
    Quote from Borninbahamas
    There is a way to get through this. You have to be who God created you to be.
    I recommend you elaborate. Otherwise this looks extremely bad, unless it says exactly what it seems to say. In that case - please leave.
  13. by   BagelBomber
    First of all, I think it took a great deal of bravery and honesty to openly speak about your situation here, and I congratulate you for that. I can't speak as a transgender individual, but I've encountered several people (both trans and cis) who have had maternal pangs. I think it's important for you to remember to take care of yourself, body and mind, throughout the journey that is nursing school- so often we forget that we have emotional, mental and physical needs because we're caught up in clinicals and exams. I personally keep a journal and just write- sometimes I write poetry, sometimes I write random words, sometimes I free write; it really depends on what I need to let out. If writing doesn't help, I go to the gym and I hit the heck out of a heavy bag for a while. I think it's entirely normal for you have to feelings of sadness, anger, isolation and despair regarding this situation, and I hope you're able to find a way to release the pent up emotions in a helpful way.

    I second what others have said here regarding possibly joining a support group and focusing on what you CAN experience. I wish I could offer something more concrete rather than just support, but you will absolutely make it through this. You're clearly already a very strong person and I hope your circle will be able to help you through this rough patch.
  14. by   KelRN215
    Quote from Borninbahamas
    There is a way to get through this. You have to be who God created you to be.
    This strikes me as an extremely condescending and transphobic comment. Not everyone shares your beliefs. No imaginary being created me.

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