This blogsite is about Surviving Infant Surgery.
Many who are reading this and have experience of infant surgery will have no ongoing issues. “Survivors” may (or may not even) wear a visible surgical scar as a reminder of what happened before their mind could register a memory, but nothing else. Some even forget they ever had “that operation”; they know little and care less about it. Great! Your problem was remedied long ago, and you can be grateful that you’ve suffered no emotional or other damage.
Many parents of these survivors will remember their baby’s sickness and surgery as their worst experience ever, but have grown through it and carry no lasting damage.
Others discover this blogsite through searching for something connected with their (or their baby’s) first surgery (or perhaps: surgeries). You’re looking to know or understand better something about it, to learn from others’ experiences. This is why on a weekly basis for several years I have added a post to the Home Page – to explain or pass on something more of what I’ve learnt over many years about how infant surgery can sometimes continue to affect us in lots of different ways. Ongoing effects, side effects, history, inheritance, surgical techniques, parenting issues, pregnancy, apparently unrelated problems, mysterious quirks of the system, even doctors behaving poorly: they can all have consequences.
At least some who have found this site did so in exploring their own infant surgery or another traumatic time or experience of their early life. There may be some issues troubling you which you find hard to describe, understand or remedy: something about you that’s not in your family’s genes: an obsession, a fear, an anger, a lack of self-confidence… Perhaps very deeply hidden and private, but frustrating and probably life-affecting in at least some ways.
This is exactly what drove me to the web when it was born, and to library shelves for many of my years. This has also created a small world-wide community of people who have survived infant surgery medically, but are recognizing that “a cure” is not always the same as “being healed”. Their immediate problem was fixed but they have been left with something troubling that has not been taken away. And something that very, very few doctors care to hear about.
PTSD stands for “post traumatic stress disorder” – and it affects not only abused people, war veterans, and survivors of a disaster. It can also trouble those who like me are here today because they had infant surgery – but infant surgery done very differently from what is the gold standard today.
Some of my readers will be interested to know a bit more about me and my own “take” on having had infant surgery to remedy pyloric stenosis in 1945. So, at the ever-present risk of coming across as a self-indulgent whiner, I tell something of my story. I do this knowing that many readers won’t need to read it, but that others will be helped by knowing where I’m coming from. I know this because others’ personal infant surgery stories have helped me so much.
Another blog also deserves mention here: Wendy P Williams has also battled trauma after infant surgery and her blog focuses on what she has learnt and gained from a long list of professional psychiatrists, therapists, and counselors who have written about or helped people after PTSD.
Some of these health professionals have recognized and address what is now called “pre-verbal memory” or “somatic (body) memory. It has become clear only in recent decades that trauma that was too early to be remembered consciously can still have an ongoing effect of mind and emotional wellbeing.
Readers must remember that this blog is not a textbook written by a medical professional! It is the work rather of a university-trained and pesonally experienced individual who has been interested in the matters discussed here for much of his life, and studied it since 1997 with the help of growing resources and networking.
Readers who want to learn more about any “lay” aspect of Infant Pyloric Stenosis will find informative forums on sites such as BabyCenter / BabyCentre, MedHelp, PatientUK, and Topix. Facebook members have access to some wonderfully informative and supportive Group “Pages”, of which most are “closed” (able to be read only by those who have joined them): these include Awareness of Pyloric Stenosis, I had Pyloric Stenosis as a Baby, Make Pyloric Stenosis more Recognised, and (largest of all) the Pyloric Stenosis Support Group.
This blog and several of the forum sites also record some people’s experiences with the adult form of Pyloric Stenosis – although this is more complex in its symptoms, cause and treatment.
So best wishes as you explore this Blog, and please consider leaving a comment or some of your personal story. And do check out some the forum sites. Happy hunting!
I trust you find some helpful answers to the trauma- and PS-related questions and frustrations that have bedevilled many of us.
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