Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

More Children After Prematurity?

“With your preeclampsia being so severe, your chances of this happening again are 50/50. I’m not telling you not to have more kids; I just want you to be aware of your chances. There is a good chance that you will have to be on bed rest for a few months with another pregnancy and you’ll have a toddler to consider, too.”

Hearing that from my high-risk obstetrician made my heart heavy. Even though I hadn’t immediately planned to have more children, I felt like the option was being taken from me.

After discussing the new information with my husband, we decided not to specifically try to have more children.  Some of the questions we asked ourselves were:

Do we want another baby?

What if another baby isn’t as healthy? What if another baby doesn’t make it?

How can we handle me being on bed rest for months? Financially? Emotionally?

How would Roxy deal with me being on bed rest or spending large amounts of time away from home at the NICU?

What if something happens to me and the baby?

There are so many situations and “what if’s” to consider when you have to make a decision that could affect each member of your family in a different way.

Some days I am thankful for a medical provider being honest and candid with me. I have a good idea of what another pregnancy would entail. I know the risks and complications and the consequences.

Other days I wish he hadn’t said anything. We could have possibly had a second baby with no problems or complications. I would have experienced a full-term pregnancy and brought home a healthy 7-pound baby after a 2-day hospital stay.

As with everything, every family has to make the decision that is best for them. Our decision is based on our family and what we feel is best for us. If God wants us to have more children, it will happen just as it is supposed to. If not, we have been blessed more than we deserve with Roxy.

Have you had children after a preemie? Decide not to have any more? How did you decide whether or not to have more children?

Samantha Pridgen About Samantha Pridgen

Samantha (KY) is the mother of Roxy, a micropreemie turned preschool princess. Roxy was born at 29 weeks weighing only 1 pound, 9 ounces. Now a healthy 4-year-old, Roxy has no long-standing complications from prematurity. Samantha writes about her family as well as Roxy's early arrival and prematurity at Mommy to a Princess. You can also find Samantha on Twitter, Facebook, or email her at samanthap@mommytoaprincess.com.

Comments

  1. I had pre eclampsia too. We also decided not to have another pregnancy, which was heartbreaking, but in our case we were given 80% chance of recurrence, which was just too high. I am comfortable we did the right thing as heartbreaking as it was. We have our miracle boy, we are so blessed

  2. Melissa D says:

    My first daughter was born at 26 weeks. I had a normal and healthy pregnancy, so they attributed her early arrival to my bicornuate uterus (which was discovered at our 20 week ultrasound). We waited 2.5 years before deciding about more children–like you, I knew that I might have to do bedrest and a NICU stay with a toddler. Plus, I knew the guilt would be out of control if it happened a second time.

    My husband encouraged me to pray about it with him and I finally felt peace about trying for a second baby. We were immediately pregnant with our second daughter, who was born at 37 weeks, thanks to weekly 17p injections. Our main concern at that point was a uterine rupture, since I had a classical c-section the first time around and my OB wasn’t sure how the incision would hold up.

    It was quite an experience, having my baby room-in with us and be able to leave the hospital with her after 48 hours. 🙂 My OB has cleared me to have more children (should we choose) and that’s a decision that hasn’t been made permanently. Now that we have experienced a healthy pregnancy, my husband feels like that’s the “norm” for us and the prematurity was a one-off. I’m not ready to say yes to a third and he’s not ready to say no…so we’re praying about it.

  3. This hits home with me as I just brought home my second preemie, and second 30 weeker. My first preemie experience was a complete shock as I had a perfectly normal pregnancy and woke up in the middle of the night in labor. After 18 hours on mag, I had a vaginal delivery and he spent 30 days in the NICU. We always knew we wanted another child and since they could not give me a reason why I went into labor the first time, my OB told me there was a good chance I would have another preemie, but also a chance I would not. We got pregnant on our first try and my second pregnancy was worse and my second preemie’s stay in the NICU was worse. He was double footling breech so I had to have a C section and he had more complications in the NICU. He came home at 53 days. I was so angry that I did not have that “perfect” pregnancy. It is all very fresh in my mind since my second preemie has only been home a week. It is much more difficult to be on bedrest and go back and forth from the hospital and keep up with things there and at home. Its probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done – physically and emotionally. But when I ask myself if I knew then what I know now, would I still go through with it – and I would in a heart beat! God’s given me 2 beautiful children and I would not trade them for anything
    What helped me get through the second NICU stay was my husband and family’s support. If you do not have a good suport system, it will be much more difficult.

  4. ESTO DE TENER OTRO EMBARAZO ME DA MUCHO TEMOR, EN EL 2010 NACIO MI PRINCESA UNA BEBA PREMATURA DE 28 SEMANAS 3 DIAS, ELLA PESO 2 LIBRAS 11 ONZAS. RECUERDO FUE EL DIA DE MI CUMPLEANOS ME DIO PRECLAPSIA MI ALTO NIVEL ARTERIAL SUBIO CASI A LAS 195 AHORA DESPUES DE MI PARTO SIGO TOMANDO TRATAMIENTO Y AHORA MI PRESION ARTERIAL A NORMALIZADO DESDE HACE 6 MESES, PERO ME DA MUCHO MIEDO VOLVER A EMBARAZARME PUES POR SER MAMA PRIMERIZA Y TENER UNA BEBE ANTES DE TIEMPO DESPUES DE ESPERARLA CASI 5ANOS, ES UNA BENDICION Y UN GRAN MILAGRO, PERO EL ARRIESGAR MI SALUD MENTAL, FISICA PARA OTRO EMBARAZO Y SI LA PROBABILIDAD DE Q SEA OTRO EMBARAZO DE ALTO RIESGO, SON TANTAS MIS PREGUNTAS QUE DE MOMENTO LO QUE HAGO CON MI PRINCESA ES DISFRUTARLA LO MAS QUE PUEDO, LA AMO PORQUE ES LA MOTIVACION A MI VIDA.

  5. 8/4/08 brought me a 27 week, 1 pound 7 oz little girl, born after sudden severe preeclampsia sent me in for emergency c-section. Because of such early delivery and size of the baby my uterus was “classic cut” (vertical). This weakens the uterus so I was told I should probably only have one more child as with every pregnancy the uterus will get weaker. That was a hard pill to swallow as the docs were telling us we may only have a family of 2 (maybe 3), when we wanted a much bigger family. I was told chance of repeat preeclampsi was 30%. We ended up having fertility trouble with number 2 (lost an ovary during pregnancy #1 due to dermoid cyst), but did eventually get pregnant with Chlomid and IUI. 2/26/12 brough me baby #2, a boy, 9 weeks early at 2 pounds 15 ounces. This was result of repeat severe preeclampsia, which this time, landed me in the hospital at 29 weeks. Spent 2 weeks on bedrest at the hospital before developing blood clots which led to a pulmonary embolism causing me again to go in for an emergency c-section. Now my docs tell me I should have no more babies …. between the weak uterus after two classic cuts, two preemies born from preeclampsia, and risk of clots and repeat embolism. I was sad at first, but so so so so so grateful for my two beautiful miracles and am coming to terms with the idea of having a small family of four. I wish you lots of luck; you will make the right decision for you!

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