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To think no you don't know how hard it is actually!

(164 Posts)

I am actually sick of mothers I see in real life telling me that they get how hard being a single mum is because their Dp works and he doesn't get home til after the baby is in bed?

Well actually no, you don't get how hard it is! You don't get how some times I might no see another human for days.
You don't.know how much it kills me emotionally. How lonely it is. Yes it's great too. But you don't have 100% responsibility.
You get your weekends together.. I can't even go to the loo without the wine starting!!

I really need to off aload about RL

Chandon Fri 24-May-13 07:52:10

By hating people who try to understand you and be sympathetic ( because that is mst likely why they say they know how you feel) , you are pushing away exactly the people who might help you feel less lonely.

You turn against the wrong people.

Naebother Fri 24-May-13 07:52:42

Yanbu it is different. They probably not mean offence but trying to empathise

Sole responsibility can weigh heavy and with no support it can feel incredibly tough to get through the days.

Can you join a group, gingerbread, speak to hV, GP?
You need to get yourself more support op.

scottishmummy Fri 24-May-13 07:53:15

yes it's hard.so you get a schedule of activity together out see other folk
whilst you may not be on same page as other mums they may be pals,company
try be be less angry towards the other mums,less they have it great and you don't

CarpeVinum Fri 24-May-13 07:53:19

Depends on how it's meant I think. MIL was very very ill. For the whole 18 years DH & I were together, until she died the day before NYE.

People say they understand based on some superficially similar detail of their own life. They didn't actually understand cos it was a bit more all encompassing then they could comprehend. But by and large it was an instrument of empathy. And I prefer people to try to express empathy rather than not.

I guess it depends on the tone. Dismissive and "oh get over it, other people manage..like ME!" not so good. Empathy focused...good.

I didn't really need people to fully understand. I did kind of need them to express empathy though. It made me feel less .... alone I guess.

WhatDoesTheDogSay Fri 24-May-13 07:54:01

People aren't always empathising. There's sometimes a grass-is-greener element: "at least you have the house to yourself in the evenings" etc.

Bearandcub Fri 24-May-13 07:54:59

Op, try to see the comments as widening your perspective. I know you didn't try to compete, your op makes that clear. BUT, your friends are trying to empathise with in the limited way your lives overlap. That's all they can do.

You are obviously going through a tough time and understandably finding it hard.

Gingerbread have nothing around here. I'm trying to sort support but I don't get out much as so much needs to be done.

I just don't really get how they can say they get it. Accidental baby, proposal, house bought, wedding next week.

Me: accidental baby, Exp shagging someone else all along, refused to cooperate csa, brassic money wise, going to court, living at home.

I'm not jealous at all. But don't say you get it/

CarpeVinum Fri 24-May-13 07:56:37

People aren't always empathising

I know. Which is why I said it depends on the intent.

bootsycollins Fri 24-May-13 07:58:18

Right take a step back and a deep breath. Your baby is only 8 months old, be kinder to yourself. Yeah ok sharing a box room with dd in your parents house isn't ideal but it isn't permanent, your already making steps to improve your and dd's future through study.

Just keep going, it'll come good. Parenting isn't easy for anyone and your not making yourself feel better by comparing your life to others, it isn't productive. Keep your focus on your goal and keep working towards it. What are your parents like? Are they driving you mad?

WhatDoesTheDogSay Fri 24-May-13 07:58:22

Yes, carpe, I'm x-post tastic this morn smile.

Chandon Fri 24-May-13 07:58:59

Fine, I won't then.

I generally avoid angry people anyway.

But angry people can get quite lonely.

2beornot Fri 24-May-13 07:59:13

I have never admired lp as much as I do now I've got dd. it's not necessarily the doing - I could do that - like you say it's the responsibility. Do I give Calpol or not, or if ur struggling with bf who's there to support you in the nights and that's just two examples!!

Not all married mums thinks its the same as having a DH who is away temporarily!!

ExcuseTypos Fri 24-May-13 07:59:27

I do sympathise. It must be very very hard to be on your own. However not all married fathers have very much input, so I can understand where people are coming from.

I have always been married, so I do have a DH. However I can imagine whats it is like to be a single parent. DH often worked away when dc were younger, and was so knackered when he was at home, that he was next to to useless. When we first had dc he was a farmer, so worked 7 days a week, 52 weeks of the year.

So whilst in name I'm not a single mum. As we had no relatives near by at all, I practically brought them up single handed. I'm sure there are many married mums who live like this. Armed forces, Drs, shift workers etc etc.

Tee2072 Fri 24-May-13 07:59:53

Is your daughter not a human being then? I think you mean another adult. To be pedantic.

But I agree. You are being competitive. And you sound very jealous, no matter what you say.

What else needs to be done? 8 month olds are very portable, so port her, take her out, to appointments, for a coffee. etc etc etc

If your life sucks? Change it.

MrsLouisTheroux Fri 24-May-13 08:00:08

Yes it's hard. You are entitled to feel sorry for yourself sometimes. Non of us 'get' how hard other people find their lives. People have different pressures and they come in all shapes and sizes.
Being lonely in sole charge of young DC is one pressure, living with grief, disability, illness, unemployment, mental health issues, difficult job are others to name a few.
So, none of us 'get' what it's like to be you but I bet when your friends say its hard when their DH go away, they are trying to empathise with you.

cory Fri 24-May-13 08:00:16

I think what other posters mean is you don't know what challenges your well meaning friends have in their lives. It could be that while they are saying "I know how hard it must be for you" they are secretly thinking "she has no idea what life is like for me". Some people who look totally enviable from the outside may be having a dreadful time in some way that doesn't show.

It's difficult to know how to express sympathy because different people are irritated by different things: if you read MN it is clear that there is no way you can express your commiseration without offending somebody: if you say "I know how hard it is" that's wrong for one person, if you say "I have no idea how you cope" that's wrong for another (have often seen posters complaining about this one), if you try to suggest there is a silver lining that's wrong for many people, if you say nothing you are unsupportive, if you make suggestions on how to improve the situation- well, very few people like that.

Most people do mean well but there are so many stumbling stones.

What I find easiest in these situations is to give people hints on what I would like them to say. Sometimes I am totally blunt and tell them "what I actually need you to say in this situation is X". With my mother this approach is often needed or I would end up smarting for hours.

In your case,all I can say is I hope your situation improves, that your contact arrangements are sorted out smoothly and in the best way, that your financial situation improves and that you find a way of meeting more people and making new RL friends. Loneliness is a very hard thing indeed. Have some flowers

agree with tee

acceptableinthe80s Fri 24-May-13 08:06:25

Have to say as a single parent I've never really came across comments like this except jokey ones from friends saying how lucky I am not to have a manchild to deal with which I completely agree with.
Saying that I think the secret to being a happy single parent is getting a break and having a bit of time for yourself.
Can your parents not babysit say once a week or so?
8 months is still very young, I remember that stage being particularly draining. It really does get easier when you get past the toddler stage.
Whilst I agree parenting alone is harder than parenting with a supportive partner, I do think it's easier than having a useless partner.

2blessed Fri 24-May-13 08:08:32

Yanbu op! I've got a friend who has consistently said this over the years. I would tell her I found it offensive as child who was raised by a single parent and she doesn't have a clue what its like to be the sole breadwinner, decision maker etc... Dp and I live together and have a ds and although dp annoys me sometimes I would not say I feel like a single parent.

You have my sympathy, it must be hard, but I think you are milking it a bit as you claim not to have another adult to speak to even though you live with your parents, because they work long hours.

You do live with them though, so they are there to watch your dc when they are at home. Many people have partners who work long hours, travel for work, or are in the forces so probably have less adult company than you do. Not a competitive misery thing, just pointing out your situation although not ideal is not as isolated as you might think.

I'm lucky, I have a partner who is there for his child, but like your parents he works long hours, and he travels, so I can go days, sometimes weeks without speaking to another adult, and I have noone to watch dd as my family live overseas. I also never get to go to the loo in private, or eat a meal without either a baby latched on or squealing at me. I am better off than you, yes, but company wise I probably have less than you do. It's how life is these days, the culture of a 9am-5pm job is pretty much gone.

Try looking at the positives. You have a child, you have your parents, you have somewhere to live, and you have the lovely MNers to chat to. Life isn't so bad. Other people's lives may seem better, but you don't know what their life really is like behind closed doors. One of my best friends has the best of everything, money, career, a nanny, gorgeous twin boys, loads of friends, expensive holidays... the works. I know she's rather have her mum, who died last year.

Thank you to the kind posters.

Just feeling really shit right now. Working so hard to change everything.
Dd been up all night, parents whinging.

Im not jealous of her life but even if I was I think I'd be entitled too!!

I mean I think it would be understandable If I was jealous. I couldn't get the right wording out

Wishihadabs Fri 24-May-13 08:11:56

YANBU OP. I sometimes think this for literally 5 seconds when DH is away/working late. Then I snap out of it and realise it is not remotely the same.

Even if DH is not physically present he is still giving me emotional support and contributes financially, he is another pair of ears to bounce ideas off. It is not comparable and anyone who says it is is being insensitive and unimaginative.

I fail to see what this has to do with SN TBH.

Aw makeitup, I'm so sorry you are having a bad day. Big hug. Kids are hard work, and exhausting.

meglet Fri 24-May-13 08:15:39

Yanbu.

I had to listen to someone telling me they had to do all the driving to Cornwall as their DP was injured. Um, I have to drive it with 2 small kids in the back to do regular toilet stops for.

I forget how lucky other people are sometimes, I have such a crap time it's beyond me that there are people out there who get to relax and enjoy life a bit.

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