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stress during pregnancy
how much does it affect baby ?


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#1 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 09:35 AM

Just after some anecdotal or scientific feedback on stress during pregnancy and potential affects - and also what I can do to minimise.

I am having a very stressful time at work right now in that it's possible I will be made redundant three months out from mat leave (due in August).  I am waiting for my employer to give me some kind of detail - which they say is currently being ratified by HR & legal depts.  Every time I have a conversation with senior management about it (two full-on convos so far), baby kicks around quite alot afterwards.  This may be coincidental of course but it got me thinking.

The company knows my situation & I have made clear that putting me in this position is not good for my health, esp given my age & two early m/cs.

Obviously every individual handles stress differently so it's a hard one to have a definitive answer to.

Any thoughts ?

#2 opethmum

Posted 13 April 2012 - 09:52 AM

I would consult a member of your union and give them the heads up. If they are making you redundant and no one else that is suspicious in my opinion. It is better go in to "that" meeting all guns blazing especially that you are pregnant and knowing your rights as a worker in that position. You may be able to negotiate a reasonable settlement if that is what you want.
I do hope that they cut you some slack and that the stress can be alleviated and quickly.
In the meantime I would seek some counselling to help you through this awful time or just keep talking to your DH and or close family member or friend to keep you sane through this.
hugs and I hope it gets better for you.

#3 ~Supernova~

Posted 13 April 2012 - 09:52 AM

At uni we got told that stress during pregnancy can influence a babies temperament...

On a purely anecdotal level, when pregnant with DD I had little to no stress (my whole pregnancy was a breeze) and had a difficult, needy, and non sleeping screamer. With DS I had a HIGHLY stressful pregnancy, both from pregnancy complications and stuff going on in my personal life. Despite having reflux he is a very happy, placid baby who sleeps all night long lol.



#4 Lady Sybil Vimes

Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:09 AM

I'm sorry you're going through this, I can understand why you'd worry. On a purely anecdotal level I had horrendously stressful time with work during my pregnancy including ongoing workplace bullying and a whole lot of management turmoil and and now have a happy, easy-going baby. I agree with the previous suggestion of accessing some counselling or similar to support you while you go through this. Do you have a mentor at work or a union delegate who could advise you? All the best, OP.

#5 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:15 AM

QUOTE (opethmum @ 13/04/2012, 09:52 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would consult a member of your union and give them the heads up. If they are making you redundant and no one else that is suspicious in my opinion. It is better go in to "that" meeting all guns blazing especially that you are pregnant and knowing your rights as a worker in that position. You may be able to negotiate a reasonable settlement if that is what you want.
I do hope that they cut you some slack and that the stress can be alleviated and quickly.
In the meantime I would seek some counselling to help you through this awful time or just keep talking to your DH and or close family member or friend to keep you sane through this.
hugs and I hope it gets better for you.

Thanks opethmum.
No union I'm afraid ! And certainly no mentor - this whole process has been very poorly managed (and I have let them know that).  

It's a senior director-level position and not under an award.  There are others being made redundant across different levels, so it's not just me.

I have made them very aware of the stress levels & I know they are concerned from a corporate perspective - I'm hoping I will be able to negotiate a settlement based on the three months between now & mat leave, 3 months mat leave, then some kind of compensation for not having a job to go back to.  But the process of them actually telling/discussing with me what's on the table is taking a long time.

I have also engaged initial legal advice on best approach, and if we get to the negotiating process, will probably have someone do that on my behalf.

It's the waiting that is killing me and stressing me.  I'm just hoping it doesn't last too long.  DH is brilliant at supporting, I'm not sure there's much more I can actually do at this point.  All I want is for our much longed-for baby to be happy & healthy.  


#6 Goggie

Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:35 AM

OP, they sound like a large organization and therefore should have an employee assistance program (EAP) which should give you free counselling. Not from an employment law or rights perspective but to help you talk through the issues and how they are affecting you, along with some strategies to help reduce the stress you are feeling. Being in a position of uncertainty is hard at the best if times and just talking it through with someone impartial may be just what you need. Best wishes

#7 Pilar Palabundar

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:03 AM

Hey Liltuss
I just wanted to say I'm sorry you are having to go through this especially now.  I'm glad you've seeked legal advice, this is probably the best thing you could do, without sounding condescending - I know it's easier said than done, perhaps just let it go.  Be confident you have sound advice when it comes to the negotiating table and knowing you've done everything in your power to ensure you're not swindled out of your correct payout.  Remember deep breaths when you're feeling under pressure (walk away, get some fresh air) and don't forget the end goal of that beautiful baby soon to be here.... plus I'm sure you'll get another job when you are ready to head back into the workforce.

Best of luck, and take care of yourself.  

Pilarxx

#8 WinterIsComing

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:14 AM

I had a very stressful pregnancy, a combination of workplace conflict, personal issues and threatened preterm labour. Despite everything, DS was born very healthy, big, reasonably easy baby who is hitting all milestones well ahead. Anecdotal but perhaps encouraging to you.

#9 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:18 AM

QUOTE (tauruspregnant! @ 13/04/2012, 10:35 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
OP, they sound like a large organization and therefore should have an employee assistance program (EAP) which should give you free counselling.

You're quite right taurus, there is a counselling service the company has contracted.  I actually used them during the TTC/IVF process & the counsellors were seriously hopeless ! (I've been to a few).  I have a great psych that I've been to in the past under the Medicare mental health plan & still have a few visits left under that so may try her.

Thankfully, I have all the tools etc I need to do my very best to manage the stress, it's a matter of applying them & hopefully minimising it.

#10 mez70

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:18 AM

It is one of those things increased stress level are best to be avoided but sometimes you just cannot help it. I know with my last Pregnancy my dad Stroke, then had a major septic infection on his foot leading to a Major op and Big Toe removed (poor circulation from stroke and other complications) so lengthy recovery, and then just when he had been discharged from respite he went on to have a heart attack (mild) and had a Pace Maker inserted so all up 3 major and life threatening illnesses between about 8 weeks and 28 weeks so as a result my stress levels were sky high, as I am an only child so managing dads care, sorting out his affairs, dealing with his work etc under POA, minding his dog etc. Then whilst dad was in Hosp I then had DS1 rushed to ED and admitted with pneumonia. You can get the picture. My OB knowing my history and what was going on kept a very close watch on me, I was on sleeping tablets very early on as I was not sleeping (at ob's suggestion)  

Strangely that bub is now my DS2 and is the most placid and easy going of all 3 of my kids.

With my first Pregnancy I had a stressfull situation at work that resulted me speaking to a relieving supervisor (mine was on leave) explain was going to leave that day though she mad a couple of calls and spoke to someone in my team who veriied all I had said but asked coupld I come in the Monday to "hand over" which I did. Left 6 weeks earlier than I was supposed to as I was having twins and struggling already and work just was not worth the risk to "them" Sometimes I have found yes you take a financial hit but walking away is better. Don't let them walk all over you but at the same time don't feel you have to fight like mad sometimes the middle ground or loosing out actually makes you the winner...


#11 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:23 AM

Thanks ladies, there are definitely some anecdotal stories here that provide comfort for me in that mummy stress doesn't always equal stressful bub, and vice versa.

The legal advice I have is from a good friend of DH's who's an IR barrister and he said ultimately you just don't want to go through with the angst of challenging anything - it's just too messy; and as mez said, walking away is usually a better option if it ultimately means happiness.  I'm confident they'll give me a decent level of compensation but the wheels turn so slowly within this large organisation, the waiting is just awful.  It's ironic they keep saying my health is number one priority yet it doesn't make the HR/Finance depts move any more quickly.

#12 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:26 AM

QUOTE (Pilar Palabundar @ 13/04/2012, 11:03 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hey Liltuss
I just wanted to say I'm sorry you are having to go through this especially now.  I'm glad you've seeked legal advice, this is probably the best thing you could do, without sounding condescending - I know it's easier said than done, perhaps just let it go.  Be confident you have sound advice when it comes to the negotiating table and knowing you've done everything in your power to ensure you're not swindled out of your correct payout.  Remember deep breaths when you're feeling under pressure (walk away, get some fresh air) and don't forget the end goal of that beautiful baby soon to be here.... plus I'm sure you'll get another job when you are ready to head back into the workforce.

Best of luck, and take care of yourself.  

Pilarxx

Thanks PP, you're a sweetheart.  I must say I do have concerns that when I re-enter the workforce I'll be 44 or so, and my industry is a 'young' one.  Part of my worry (and also one of the arguments I'll be putting to them in order to get a larger payout) is that I'll be out of the 'game' for 15 months or more, without a job to return to.

I had a conversation with my senior director just now & he's told me to take time off until the decision is made (if I want to).  I think swims, massages and some gentle exercise are in order.

Edited by Liltuss, 13 April 2012 - 11:27 AM.


#13 Goggie

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:31 AM

Sorry you didn't have a great experience with the company's eap. I used one several years ago and found them really helpful - but it all depends on who you get!

swims and massage sound like a plan in the meantime though:)

#14 Pilar Palabundar

Posted 13 April 2012 - 11:40 AM

QUOTE (Liltuss @ 13/04/2012, 11:26 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
he's told me to take time off until the decision is made (if I want to). I think swims, massages and some gentle exercise are in order.

Sounds like the plan Liltuss... enjoy it ! Prepare yourself for some soccer practice going on though...... your little one prefers you active doesn't he wink.gif

Edited by Pilar Palabundar, 13 April 2012 - 11:41 AM.


#15 opethmum

Posted 13 April 2012 - 12:38 PM

It does not really matter what level of management you are, you can still get union support should you see the need. Although it is an individual contract per se, you still can seek advice re: your redundancy options.
I really hope that you can get the maximum you deserve and that you can you can minimise the stress somewhat.
Good luck.



#16 Nobody Cool

Posted 13 April 2012 - 12:59 PM

...

Edited by AryaStar, 04 February 2013 - 06:19 PM.


#17 Cat Burglar

Posted 13 April 2012 - 01:32 PM

Just personally I had HEAPS of stress while pregnant and I don't think it has affected DD. She is a very intelligent, nosey, highly strung, over active individual, but so am I.

The thing is that you can stress about being stressed so try not to worry about is this going to affect my baby etc. Remember that the human race has survived thousands of years of stressful situations like wars floods famines etc and healthy babies were born nonetheless.

If you can take up yoga or meditating or something that may be beneficial.

I hope things improve for you bbighug.gif

#18 Peggy Olson

Posted 13 April 2012 - 01:35 PM

I can relate to this. My first pregnancy was stressful. There was a lot of turmoil at my former workplace. We were suddenly being called in to financially justify our spending and our existence within the broader department and company while my supervisor was on paternity leave. I was doing a lot of shift work, so 50 hr plus weeks were the norm rather than the exception.
On top of this, our former landlord kicked us out for renovations while I was 7 months pregnant, so there was a lot of running around trying to find somewhere to live as well as juggling work stress and crazy shifts. I had an antepartum haemmorrage at 33 weeks the week we were to move house and was hospitalised for 3 nights. The only good thing about that was that I wound up work 2 weeks earlier than I would have. My section was terminated while I was on maternity leave. I received my redundancy the week I was due to return to work.

Despite a traumatic labour and a bit of feeding difficulty, my son was a very easy, chilled out baby.


#19 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 02:13 PM

QUOTE (opethmum @ 13/04/2012, 12:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It does not really matter what level of management you are, you can still get union support should you see the need. Although it is an individual contract per se, you still can seek advice re: your redundancy options.
I really hope that you can get the maximum you deserve and that you can you can minimise the stress somewhat.
Good luck.

Without going into details, it's slightly more complicated than it seems in my not being a union member but in any case, I'm confident in what I will go in negotiating for - it's really trying to get through the waiting time that's hard.

#20 minidiamond

Posted 13 April 2012 - 02:16 PM

QUOTE (Soccer Mum @ 13/04/2012, 01:32 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Just personally I had HEAPS of stress while pregnant and I don't think it has affected DD. She is a very intelligent, nosey, highly strung, over active individual, but so am I.

The thing is that you can stress about being stressed so try not to worry about is this going to affect my baby etc. Remember that the human race has survived thousands of years of stressful situations like wars floods famines etc and healthy babies were born nonetheless.

If you can take up yoga or meditating or something that may be beneficial.

I hope things improve for you bbighug.gif

Glad your DD is nosey and perky Soccer mum !! You're right about what our forefathers/mothers went through & I've said this more generally to DH on many occasions.  Our favourite quip is how I'll just have to go straight back to working in the fields with bub on my back the day after delivery.  But the reality is we are a spoilt generation so stress is relative !

I do prenatal yoga once a week on Sats so looking forward to that tomorrow.

#21 Guest_Starletta_*

Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:20 PM

Op I've been in intense stress ever since I peed on the stick!

I think I've asked my ob at very appointment about stress and pregnancy. He just makes sure my blood pressure is ok and encouraged us to learn some things to manage anxiety. It does help. I have short meditations on my iPhone which do help and I do yoga as well. Make sure you are getting enough sleep too, it can make a big difference to stress levels.

Good luck with everything original.gif




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