Other Suggestions for Recovery
Everyone has their own way of processing and coping
From our conversations with thousands of people who have experienced ectopic pregnancy, we have compiled a list of suggested ideas on how to manage the days, weeks and months that follow treatment. This is not an exhaustive list and everyone has their own way of processing and coping with their loss. We hope that you might find a suggestion here from someone who has walked a similar path that might help your own healing journey.
Talking about your feelings with trusted family and friends can be a helpful way to release some of the emotional pressures. You may find there are only certain people that you want to see and talk to with whom you can be open and this is fine.
Sometimes we might feel that we cannot talk to our friends and family. There may be the need to go over what you have already expressed, but feel that our friends and family might not want to have the same conversation repeatedly. Sometimes there is comfort in being among others who have been through a similar experience and who have some understanding of where you are physically and emotionally after your ectopic pregnancy.
Our support services are available for anyone who has experienced an ectopic pregnancy, including partners and wider family members and friends. Many members of our support team have also been through an ectopic pregnancy and provide a listening ear from someone who understands.
Our forum provides an online community among many others who have experienced ectopic pregnancy – some of whom may well be at the same point as you during diagnosis, treatment, or recovery.
Communicating with others who have experienced a similar loss can relieve some of the isolation and help to make sense of how we are feeling. You do not need to feel alone.
Commemorate your loss
Some choose to mark their loss through an act of remembrance. This can be a source of comfort on key milestones such as scan dates, due dates, and anniversaries.
Ectopic pregnancy is exhausting and many feel that they are not able to do much more than sit in front of the television. This is okay. If you feel it is a duvet day, then let that happen.
You may feel angry at what has happened. Acknowledging and expressing these emotions in a controlled way can help to release them. This can mean that they are perhaps less likely to erupt when you least expect.
Exercise can help relieve tension and some people find it helpful to punch a pillow, write down feelings, listen to music or express themselves through writing such as a blog or a poem or through art.
Taking care of your physical needs can also help mental wellbeing. When you are able to manage, you can book a haircut, massage, or salon treatment, if that might help you feel good. If you are well enough, you can visit a salon or spa or there are mobile therapists who can come to your home. If you have had surgery, do tell the therapist and they will avoid the areas affected.
Research has shown that healthy eating choices are associated with better mood. For example, diets with a high intake of fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes (beans, peas and lentils) and moderate intake of dairy products and poultry (chicken and turkey), such as the Mediterranean diet, have been shown to promote improved moods.
Good-mood foods such as turkey, chicken, milk, eggs, cheese, fish, nuts and seeds, which are all rich in tryptophan, an amino acid which helps the brain to produce serotonin to make your mood stable and encourage healthy sleep.
If you are being treated with methotrexate it is very important that you avoid foods enriched with folic acid until your hCG hormone levels have fallen to below 5 iu/l.
Being active can help improve mental health and wellbeing. Exercising can lead to improved mood and sleep, as well as reduced anxiety.
Once you have physically recovered from treatment of your ectopic pregnancy, increasing physical activity may help you start to feel better emotionally.
Making a difference and having a new focus
After physical recovery, many feel that they wish to have a goal or achievement to work towards. Key dates such as due dates and anniversaries can be difficult to navigate and many people we support choose to carry out activities to provide an alternate focus. Some even choose to take on a challenge that is meaningful to them such as awareness and fundraising for the crucial support and information we provide.