How do you know when it's PND?

(6 Posts)
LeafySuburbs Wed 04-Jul-12 12:08:56

I have a 14 week old and a 5 year old. I'm on maternity leave and the plan is to return after Christmas. I don't like my job and I planned to form some kind of long term plan to change careers while on maternity leave. I was also supposed to be sorting the house out!

So far I have made no progress with either of those things. I am shocked by how little I achieve each day. I feel the school run hems me in at either end of the day and I've been taken aback by how short it seems to make my days. It seems to take up all my time just keeping on top of laundry, dishes, cooking, shopping and the most basic of cleaning. There seems to be no time for anything else. I keep thinking, if I can barely keep on top of having two children now - how on earth will we manage when I am back work?!

I am dreading going back to work, but wouldn't want to be a full-time SAHM even if that were financially viable. I feel like I am never going to achieve anything very much with my life and can just see myself being hemmed in by children for the next two decades. I spent most of my twenties, after I graduated, not achieving much because I was waiting to have children, now I've realised I will be in my fifties by the time they leave home and I'm wondering when I'll ever do anything for myself. I wish I'd had children younger or got my finger out and worked and played harder when I was younger.

My husband has limited patience to talk about how I feel, he just says things like 'I don't want to hear about problems, only solutions'. But I can't see a solution to how I'm feeling.

So, my question is who do you know whether this is PND or not? As my husband pointed out, I feel miserable and short tempered quite a lot when I haven't just had a baby. I am dressed with make up on every day, the baby is lovely and not at all difficult, I'm getting enough exercise walking with the pram every day. But I do feel lonely, frustrated and worried about the future.

mumof4sons Wed 04-Jul-12 17:13:58

I can't say whether or not you have PND, but I can tell you that most mums feel this way at some time, I know I sure did. At one time, I had 4 DSs 7 and under.

Sometimes I think we mums put such high expectations on ourselves. We are bombarded with images of women who supposedly have it all. We see some celebrity with her designer baby on her hip jetting off here there and everywhere looking perfectly groomed and a shiny clean baby. What we don't see is the nanny, the maid and the PA who helps her have it all.

It is early days for you with 2 small children. A 14wk old baby is hard work, and you are still trying to find your feet. It does get easier. Don't worry about the laundry, the cooking, the cleaning - it will get done when it gets done. Set yourself small achievable goals each day, but remember there is always tomorrow. Try to make a small amount of time for yourself every once in a while too.

Our children are only with us a short amount of time, enjoy them. I know you are thinking you have another 20 years of this, but you don't. When they hit their early teens you will become surplus to requirement.

Speak to your dr or health visitor about your feelings. Speak to your friends about the way you feel - I'm sure you'll find out that you are definitely not alone.

PS - I was so glad when the supermarkets started delivering, now couldn't live without it.

LeafySuburbs Wed 04-Jul-12 18:46:37

Thank you for response.

I know it's important to enjoy my children - it seems like yesterday my five year old was a tiny baby. I know it goes very quickly!

Honestly, I'm not at all house proud - when I say I do the most basic of cleaning, I really mean it! DH does a lot of tidying and cleaning as he is tidier by nature, I do most of the cooking and laundry. I make time for myself, the baby is very easy and sleeps a lot during the day so I do MN and read.

I think the problem is largely around work. The baby was planned and at the time, we agreed that 9-12 months maternity leave would give me some space to decide what I would like to do, and make a plan towards changing career in the longer term. I've been unhappy and under performing at work for a long
time. i haven't made any progress there, and feel i am wasting my maternity leave.

In a lot of ways I probably have too much time on my hands - I am getting things out of perspective and start convincing myself I'm a failure. I know what you are saying about celebrity mums, but I compare myself to old school friends who are managing several children and a career.

LittlePoot Wed 04-Jul-12 20:22:40

You sound like you spend quite a bit of your time on your own with baby and child. Maybe try and find other people with babies to hang out with each day? Baby groups aren't everyone's cup of tea, but if you can find ways to hang out with others with young babies, it might help you see that what you're going through is not unusual. If you live near a city or decent sized town, they often have things like cinemas screenings for mums to take baby along to where it doesn't matter if they sleep or cry or feed. Can be a really lovely way to pass some time. You do sound a bit down and your husband seems to be giving you a very manly answer! so other women-friends, other mums, health visitor etc could be a really useful sounding board. It's a good idea to set yourself little tasks for each day-write a list and make sure it's easily achievable. Ticking things off a list can be very therapeutic and can help give you a bit more structure. Please take it easy on yourself though-you're stuck in a rut-that doesn't mean you've failed at anything. Just maybe that you need some more inspiration. xx

davidtennantsmistress Wed 04-Jul-12 20:41:55

sorry you're going through this atm,

for me, the depression first time around came about when I sat in the drs office & cried my eyes out, telling him I wanted to harm my child & to take him away, (ds was 2 at the time) this time around, i've acted quicker, but the common theme for me is it comes on when I am more snappy, and I mean literally 95% of the time, constantly tired, anxious, keep thinking i'm not doing enough, rushing about everywhere, basically mind always racing, they're all triggers for me that one thing stops/fails and it's major melt down. Again though for me tablets have really helped, first time was 4.5 months, this time i've only just started again but am thinking until xmas.

It's such a taboo subject really in a lot of ways, yet nothing to be ashamed of at all, but if you wake up each day with a sinking feeling of hopelessness, and can't enjoy your children, with the little things - ie when they giggle, or do silly things, then it may be time to speak to someone about how you're feeling.

remember not to compare lives with anyone - on the face of it I can put on a front of coping smiles and always cheery, but inside my own home it's a totally different story, so things are not always as they seem.

<pictures are a good idea, as are sure start centres if you can get to a nice one?>

LeafySuburbs Wed 04-Jul-12 21:10:44

I used to do a few groups with my oldest and made some lovely friends. They all had much smaller gaps between children and we are still in touch but they have moved on - back at work full time, kids all at school now, etc. I probably need to make some friends with babies. I'm very near a surestart and recently started baby massage there. Nobody seemed interested in talking to me though!

Cinema sounds great, I used to that with my eldest - great way to relax if I remember rightly!

What I really need is a lottery win, then I won't have to go back to my horrible job wink

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