What made HG a million times worse was the lack of support from GPs and nurses that I came across at the start. I’ve since met a GP who took HG, and me, seriously but I know from other HG sufferers that unsympathetic healthcare practitioners are more common than they should be. My first GP signed me off but kept saying “Morning sickness is hard”. This was not morning sickness and the majority of pregnancy women thankfully do not have to go through this. But for the ones that do, a little more understanding is needed.
There is medication HG sufferers can take – most to either help the nausea, vomiting or both. But, like EVERYTHING you do as a pregnant woman, the whole world will have an opinion on it and condemn you somehow. I had begun to take medication at 8 weeks until my symptoms worsened and I found myself at my healthcare centre talking to a nurse who was VERY disapproving of medication during pregnancy and asked me if I had ever heard of thalidomide. Frightened out of my wits that I was going to have a two-headed baby, I stopped the medication and didn’t try any again until I met a much more sensible GP when I was 14 weeks. Unfortunately, this meant that during the worst period of HG, I wasn’t on medication that could have helped me.
My lifeline during HG was found online. In particular, I found a very active thread on mumsnet for women suffering from HG. I went from feeling like the only person in the world suffering like this to realising there were lots of us. And there is strength in numbers. During my darkest days, it was a comfort to know that other people understood and had been through this. I wasn’t alone. Realising this gave me strength when I most needed it and, to all of those women, I can’t thank you enough. They are one of the reasons why I am blogging about this now – I don’t want anyone else to feel alone and isolated with HG. That’s not fun and it’s not necessary. You are part of a group of awesome fighters. Welcome.
For more posts on my experience with HG, check out my Hyperemesis Gravidarum tag. Thanks for reading!