Sunday, December 27, 2009

Lupus, Pregnancy, and Raising Kids

Good day Lupies. I have to say, I'm enjoying this very long weekend. I don't want to leave my apartment. I just want to be lazy and lie around enjoying the quiet of my home and the beauty of the day. It has also been a great opportunity to catch up on the latest lupie news.

This morning I read an inspirational story about a fellow lupie by the name of Madam Low Kwee Yoong and her successful attempts to have children while dealing with lupus. She talks about her many trials and tribulations with in-vitro-fertilization, but after it all, she now has four beautiful children.

I had my children before I was diagnosed with lupus, but I now look back at some of the issues I had in my pregnancy, and I can point those issues to possible lupus symptoms. When I was pregnant with my daughter, I broke out into a rash on my forearms, and the doctors could not figure out what on Earth was going on. Now I think, "lupus rash".

Fortunately, I had my kids when I was young and before I was diagnosed. I think otherwise, I would have hesitated. Even though there really isn't any significant lupus risk for me to have kids, I would have worried. The average pregnant woman is filled with worries about the health of her unborn child. Imagine the worries that a woman with lupus goes through.

One worry is likely what effect lupus medication will have on an unborn child. These worries are often greater than necessary. There are certain lupus medications you shouldn't take if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant, such as certain chemotherapy based drugs. It's best to communicate with your doctor in order to know for sure what medications are safe. Be heartened that many women with lupus successfully go through pregnancies to have healthy kids.

I think the key is working very closely with your doctor to make sure you're in a healthy place in order to carry a baby.

Another concern I would have had would have been just the physical and emotional energy it takes to raise a child. My children are both grown now, but for many years I worried about the effect that lupus has had on my family. There have been Christmas dinners I haven't cooked, school events that I've missed, and things I just didn't do because I was too sick to get out of bed or leave the hospital.

In the end, I have raised strong minded and empathetic children. My daughter is amazing. She has taken care of me more times than I can count. She is smart, brilliant, and independent. I cannot imagine my life without her.

My son is bipolar and schizophrenic, and I have to say that there have been times when dealing with his issues has exacerbated my symptoms. I think that it has been particularly challenging to be there for him because of the issues I face with lupus. I have had doctors recommend finding a place to deal with him in order to take care of myself, but I couldn't bring myself to do that.

I give it my all, and I have to depend on my husband tremendously to deal handle issues. However, I must say that considering the issues that my son has, overall he is a great son. He is caring and considerate. Also, many parents with bipolar and/or schizophrenic children often worry about drug or alcohol abuse. I've never had to worry about that with Julian.

In the end, I had to accept that I wasn't going to be the perfect mom, but that's okay. I love my kids as best I can, and they know that they're loved and that's all that's important when you come down to it.

Have a great new year lupies!



Kate said...

Are there any studies that you know of that relate Lupus to developmental and psychiatric disorders in the kids of Lupie moms? It seems that there are an aweful lot of us with kids with these problems.

ChyvonneB said...

I have been concerned about the issue of having children and being ill. I continue to pray on it.

You must be very strong to be dealing with Lupus and your son's mental health issues. I pray for your continued strength.

lupie said...

Hey lupiekat ... Happy New Year 2010 ...

I've just been given green light to try for a baby like 6-mths ago and now, it back to RED - stop ...

I guess WE LUPIE just gotta stay strong and pray! All will be a-okay!

Medical Information said...

Lupus is often found to affect females in reproductive years. Women detected with lupus are advised to avoid pregnancy because it could lead to miscarriage. If pregnant women is detected with lupus, it can effect her kidneys and foetus. One should take proper care when conceiving and should go for regular check up. For more details on it, refer Lupus and pregnancy

紅包 said...

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Jennifer Criado said...

I was dignosed with lupus two months before i got pg and now they're saying it may have effected My heart, i may not be able to have The Baby, waiting for The results are killing me, im only 32 and have two daughters, that still need me!!! God is My only hope, i have to Count on him to resque My family now!!! God has The last word!!! Be back with My testimony soon!!!