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产后强迫症的世界

产后强迫症的世界



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关于“母亲”,一方面有着太多太多的溢美之词,另一方面,现实中的母亲们又承受着多重压力而不可倾吐。

——张一丹


👇


产后强迫症的世界


作者:Windsor Flynn 

译者:张一丹

校对:宋一

策划:吴树炜 & 刘蕊


After Giving Birth, I Had Violent Thoughts About Hurting My Baby. Now I Know Why.

生完小孩后,我曾疯狂地想要伤害宝宝。现在,我明白为什么了。

“I had no idea that my thoughts were textbook symptoms of postpartum obsessive compulsive disorder.”

“我丝毫不知我的这种所思所想是产后强迫症患者的典型症状。”


In 2014, when I was 26 years old, I gave birth to my first child. Like all babies, he was tiny and helpless. He relied on me to survive, and I jumped right in to do my job. I was comfortable with my baby, and we bonded immediately. I knew how to soothe him when he was upset and breastfeeding came easily to me. You could even say I was a natural. I spent my days making organic baby food, going to “baby and me” classes and running with the baby jogger. I didn’t miss my old life, and to anyone looking, I seemed like a well-adjusted, happy new mom. 

2014年,26岁的我生了头胎。同所有的新生儿一样,他是那么小,又那么无助。宝宝需要我才能茁壮成长,于是我迅速承担起妈妈的责任。我和宝宝相处甚欢,很快我俩便形影不离。我知道如何安抚哭闹时的他,喂奶对我来说也是轻而易举的事。可以说我就是天生当妈妈的料。每天我会给宝宝做有机食物,上“我与宝宝”亲子课,推着婴儿车慢跑。我并不怀恋产前生活。在旁人眼里,我这个新手妈妈既得心应手,又幸福快乐。


But I was consumed by the idea that something would happen to him. To calm myself, I did everything in my power to make sure he was safe — and I mean everything. I held him while he slept so I could feel his breathing. I made sure I was his main caretaker so that I could keep an eye on him at all times. I even warmed his DockATot near the heater so that a difference in temperature wouldn’t startle him. I had exhausted all safety measures and had eliminated any external threats in my control, but I still had the gnawing feeling that something bad would happen. I could think of nothing worse than causing harm to my own child, so I turned my focus inward and started to monitor myself, just to make sure it wasn’t me who would hurt him.

但我满脑子都在想他会不会出事。为了让自己平静下来,我把能做的都做了,生怕他受一点伤害。当他安睡时,我会抱着他,这样我便能感受到他在呼吸。为了不让他脱离我的视线范围,我会尽量自己来照顾他。我还把他的婴儿床放到了离取暖器近的地方,来保持恒温,以免忽高忽低的温度惊醒他。所有安全防范措施我都做了,并尽我所能排除了各种外在威胁因素,但我还是会担惊受怕,害怕有坏事发生。我想不到有什么比伤害自己的孩子更糟糕的事了,于是我便开始监督自我,确保至少我不会伤害他。


At first, I chalked it up to new mom worries. I thought I was being responsible by foreseeing any future tragedies and avoiding them. But in the months that followed, my mental state worsened. Even though it was the last thing I wanted to do, I started imagining all the possible ways that I could hurt him. The images came involuntarily and fast, like a TV screen flashing before my eyes.

起初,我想这也许是新手妈妈的顾虑。为避免坏事发生,能如此未雨绸缪,我想自己还挺负责的。但接连数月,我的精神状态每况愈下。我开始不停地幻想各种可能伤害他的方式,尽管我对此深恶痛绝。这些场景就这么接踵而至,就像有台电视屏幕在我眼前不停闪动。


Everything I saw gave my imagination more to run with. The bathtub brought images of me drowning my baby. When I walked past the railing on the second floor of my home, I felt a pang of fear in case I threw him down. If I stood too close to a window, I saw myself opening it and letting him fall to the ground. The balcony, which was once my preferred place to sunbathe, became a danger zone. The hard brick below threatened to be a deadly landing place for my fragile infant. Even my daily walk to Golden Gate Park felt dangerous. If I wanted to, I could just let go of the stroller. The wheels were big enough that nothing would stop its trajectory down the hill and he would eventually roll to his death. It was like a recurring nightmare but my eyes were open. I didn’t want to hurt my child, but I was having violent thoughts of doing so.

凡是我目之所及之物都能让我胡思乱想。看到澡盆,我会联想到自己会溺死宝宝。走过我家二楼栏杆时,心里一阵恐惧,生怕自己会把他丢下楼去。要是站在窗边,我会看到自己推开窗,然后把他推出窗外的场景。阳台过去是我晒日光浴的首选之地,现在俨然成了危险区。硬砖铺就的地面对脆弱的宝宝来说威胁至极。就连每天去往金门公园的途中,都会觉得有危险。只要我想,我大可放开婴儿车,车轮大到足以滑下山坡,宝宝也会因此摔死。这就像在做一场不停歇的噩梦,只不过我睁着眼。我并不想伤害他,可那狂乱的思绪却不由我。


I wanted to tell someone — anyone — what I was going through, but I didn’t know who to turn to for help. By the time I was deep into symptoms, my postpartum checkups were a thing of the past. There were mental health questions on the intake form at the pediatrician’s office, but none of them applied to me. I was not depressed or sad. I did not have a hard time bonding with my baby, and I did not want to harm myself or my infant. But something was wrong in my head.

我想向他人倾诉这一切,谁都行,但我不知道该向谁求助。症状恶化后,产后检查也不再管用。尽管儿科医生办公室里的就诊表上有精神健康方面的问题,但没一条与我的症状相符。我既不抑郁,也不忧伤。我并没觉得和宝宝相处难,我也不想伤害自己或宝宝。但我头脑里总有些不好的想法。


When I mentioned the possibility of a postpartum mood disorder to family, they said it wasn’t possible. They only knew of postpartum depression or psychosis, and they believed that mothers with those disorders were either unable or unwilling to care for their children. I was neither. When I told my husband I was worried about going crazy like some moms do, he reassured me that I wouldn’t and brushed it off. I could have said that I was afraid of killing my own child because I pictured the different ways that could happen all day long, but there is no easy way to say that. And if I explained that I didn’t want to do those things, would he have believed me?

我跟家人说我好像得了产后情绪失控症,他们说哪有这回事。他们只听说过产后抑郁症或产后精神病,而且他们认为有这些病的妈妈,要么是无法照顾小孩,要么就是不想。而我都不是。我跟丈夫说,我好害怕自己也会向那些妈妈一样发疯,但他安慰我,不会的,让我别胡思乱想。我本想说害怕自己会杀掉孩子,因为我一天到晚都在幻想杀害他的各种方式,可我还是难以启齿。如果我解释到其实我并不想做这些,他会相信我吗?


So I lived with the fear and the guilt and the violent thoughts and did what I could to lessen my anxiety. I reminded myself every second that I loved my baby, and that moms who love their babies don’t kill them. I spent most of my time in public places so that in case I went mad, someone out there would notice and hopefully save him from me. When I was alone with my son at home, we spent a lot of time on video calls with my parents and any friends that would entertain us. I felt safer knowing that someone else was with us.

我每天都在恐惧、内疚和暴力的想法中惶惶度日,还要尽力缓解内心的不安。每时每刻我都告诉自己,我爱宝宝,爱自己宝宝的妈妈是不会伤害宝宝的。大多数时候,我都呆在公共场合,万一我疯了,起码有人能注意到,帮助他脱险得救。如果只有我和儿子在家,大部分时间我都会和父母或是愿意同我俩唠嗑的朋友们通视频电话。只要知道有人和我们一起,我就会安心些。


At night, I prayed for his safety with such vigor that even God wouldn’t be able to tell that I wasn’t a believer. I had no idea that what I was doing were considered compulsions, and that they — along with my unwanted thoughts — were textbook symptoms of postpartum obsessive compulsive disorder, a mental illness that affects 1-2% of all women after childbirth. The number is estimated to be higher, but due to the high level of shame that comes with having such taboo thoughts, the illness often goes unreported. 

夜里,我拼命祈祷,保佑他能平平安安,我相信连上帝都不会质疑我有半分虚假。我丝毫不知,我的所作所为是强迫症所致。我的这些行为,以及各种讨厌的想法就是产后强迫症的典型症状,这是一种会影响1%-2%产后女性的精神疾病。真实数据会更高,但由于这种禁忌思想所带来的过于不堪,病人常常不愿透露病情。


When I was in the thick of my obsessive compulsive disorder, the day began and ended with fear. Adrenaline coursed through my veins before I opened my eyes, and intrusive thoughts popped into my head all day long. Most days felt like a never-ending carnival ride, with each spin more disorienting than the last. To get through it, I kept myself scheduled. Every minute was accounted for, leaving no time for my mind to wander or for my hands to be idle because if I stopped to rest, I feared I would go crazy. I figured if I could just keep going, I would go right past whatever was happening here. Eventually, I couldn’t take it anymore.

当我的强迫症愈演愈烈时,我从早到晚都战战兢兢的。眼还没睁开,肾上腺素就已涌入血管,接着一天到晚各种烦扰思绪就涌入我的脑海。很多时候,我就像坐上了一个旋转不停的摩天轮,一圈比一圈晕。为了克服这一切,我把时间安排的满满当当。因为只要我有空休息,我就会害怕自己发疯。所以一分钟都不会闲着,这样我便没时间瞎想或无所事事。我想只要我永不停歇,那么不管周遭发生了什么我都能不闻不问。但最后,我还是撑不住了。


Wanting to be free from the violent images in my mind and the fear that I may act on them, I scoured the internet for answers. I found a list of all the postpartum mood disorders, and included in that list was postpartum anxiety/OCD. Having never heard of OCD developing after childbirth, I clicked the link to find a checklist of symptoms. I ticked off every mark. It all started to make sense. I was ill, but I wasn’t a murderer and I wasn’t the only one.

我想要摆脱这些暴力的念头,同时也害怕我会真的付诸实践,便上网搜寻方法。我搜到了一张罗列有所有产后情绪失调症的清单,其中有产后强迫症。我从没听说过产后会得强迫症,于是点开了链接,看到了一张症状表,我把上面的勾打了个遍。这下子一切都明朗起来了。我不是什么杀人犯,我是病了,而且我不是唯一的患者。


It turned out that women around the world were having symptoms exactly like mine. They were having scary, intrusive thoughts about harming their babies. They were filled with fear and anxiety, and like me, they were afraid to tell anyone because they didn’t want their babies to be taken away. Women were living in shame and guilt because of taboo thoughts that they would never act on, and all the while, there was a name for it. I was upset, knowing that my suffering could have been minimized if I had known about this.

原来,世界上还有其他女性和我一样感同身受。她们也有可怕的烦扰思想,也想伤害自己的宝宝。她们的内心满是恐惧和焦虑,并且和我一样,也因不想和宝宝分离,而害怕向他人倾诉。这些女性生活在羞耻与罪恶中,只是因为她们怀有永不会实践的禁忌想法。所幸的是,这是病。我很郁闷,如果我早知道有这种病,也许我也就不需要煎熬至此了。


That night, I found a therapist near me who specialized in postpartum mental health. I emailed her right away and explained my symptoms. Probably sensing my urgency, she agreed to see me that week. I was diagnosed with postpartum OCD, and she explained to me that mothers with this illness do not ever act on their thoughts and that my experience was not uncommon. Hearing her say those words gave me such a rush of relief that I burst into tears, grateful to be in a room with someone who recognized what was happening to me.

那天晚上,我找到了附近一位专治产后精神问题的心理医生。我立马就给她发了封邮件,向她描述我的各种症状。或许是看出我很着急,她同意那周就见我。我被确诊为产后强迫症,接着,她向我解释,患此病的妈妈绝不会真的付诸实践,而且我这样的情况也不少见。她的这番话让我倍感宽慰,我一时泣不成声,感谢总算能和明白我现状的人共处一室。


The diagnosis gave me enough reassurance that I wasn’t a danger to my child. Shortly after, I decided to stop therapy but my symptoms did not completely go away. The therapist I found knew enough about OCD to get me out of crisis, but while she was very knowledgeable in talk therapy, she was not versed in exposure and response prevention therapy, which is the gold standard treatment for obsessive compulsive disorder. 

这次诊断让我放心不少,我相信自己不会对孩子构成危险。不久后,我决定停止进行心理治疗,尽管我的症状并未完全消失。我找的这位心理医生对强迫症的了解足以帮我走出危机,然而她只对谈话疗法在行,不擅于治疗强迫症的黄金疗法—暴露反应预防治疗。


So in 2017, when my son was 3 1/2 years old, I gave birth to my daughter and developed postpartum OCD once more. This time, I didn’t wait to ask for help. Instead, I found an OCD specialist and started ERP therapy immediately. My therapist and I worked on habituating myself to the thoughts and feelings that caused me so much distress by exposing me to those fears and obsessions in a controlled environment.

2017年,儿子三岁半,我生下女儿后又一次患上了产后强迫症。这次,我立马寻求帮助,找到了一位治疗强迫症的专家,立即进行了暴露反应预防治疗。在可控的环境中,心理医生帮助我直面这些恐惧与执念,习惯那些令我痛苦的想法和感觉。


I learned that as scary and awful as my thoughts felt, they did not define me.  Most importantly, I learned that I am able to tolerate anxiety, fear, guilt and uncertainty, which many people with OCD have a hard time doing.  It’s been four years since my diagnosis and I still have intrusive thoughts, but they don’t come as often or as intensely as they did before. I am well into my recovery from OCD and I continue to see my therapist every two weeks because I consider her to be part of my mental health toolbox. Living with a disorder that completely hijacks your sense of self makes it really hard to be present, but it is possible ― I know. I am now the well-adjusted, happy mom that I once pretended to be.

如今我知道,不论我的想法有多么可怕,多么恶心,它们都不能定义我。最重要的是,我知道自己能克服不安、恐惧、罪恶感与种种不确定性,要知道许多强迫症患者都不堪其扰。如今我被确诊已有四年了,烦扰的想法还是会不时袭来,但没有过去那么频繁,那么强烈了。我的产后强迫症恢复的很好,但每隔两周我还是会看心理医生,我已经把她视为维持我精神健康的一部分。患有精神疾病会彻底摧毁你的自我认知,让你很难保持清醒,但我知道这是可以做到的。过去,我假装自己是得心应手、幸福快乐的妈妈;现在,我真的做到了。





产后强迫症的世界

  • 本文原载于 HUFFPOST

  • 原文链接:https://www.huffpost.com/entry/what-its-like-postpartum-ocd_n_5ec54bb0c5b6729758746bb9



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