Sleep deprived or something more?(2 Posts)
I'm a new mum. My son is 11 weeks old. He is amazing. I love him more than I could ever have imagined. I'm just finding it so hard. In front of everyone else I put on a brave face. I'm not the type of person to open up to others and cry. My son is very good. He has slept 6/7 hours at night from about 8 weeks, but I can never sleep straight away so it takes me an hour sometimes to sleep. The only problem is that in the day he only sleeps for a maximum of 20 minutes so I can't even nap in the day. I'm so scared of mentioning it to anyone as I don't want people to think I'm an unfit mum but when my husband is at work and my son has his little cat naps I'm in tears. Mainly because I am so tired and I know he will be awake again in 20 minutes and I can't get to sleep in that time let alone have a quick cat nap myself. This has taken me every strength in my body to write but I also miss who I used to be. Then I cry more because I feel guilty that I feel this way when I have such a precious little boy who I wouldn't change for anything! Am I feeling this way because I'm sleep deprived? I'm so scared if it is anything worse as I don't want anyone thinking I can't cope.
Firstly congratulations on your new arrival. Mine are 17 & 12 but it seems like only yesterday. And I remember vividly how with my first one I felt exactly like you. She too was a good sleeper ( eight hours by 6 weeks) but I felt like I had been hit like a train. Nothing and nobody quite prepares you for how it turns your life completely upside down, and no matter how much you love them, you yearn for sleep & 'normality' to return.
Looking back, and because I did it better the second time around, I would try the following;
1) If your husband is happy to do so, would he do the last feed on a Friday night and the first one on a Saturday morning so that one day a week you get a really good, uninterrupted nights sleep?
2) Try not to think about the things you're not doing - don't worry about housework/shopping. As long as you go to bed each night & everyone is safe and fed you've done really well. It will never say on anybody's gravestone that their house was dust-free!
3) If the house really bothers you, could you afford to pay somebody £20 every few weeks to spend a couple of hours cleaning for you? I did & it made me feel so much better.
4) You tend to think ( I did) that nothing will ever be 'normal' again - but believe me, you blink & they're at secondary school. This phase is such a short one. I know it doesn't feel like it at the moment.
5) Do you know any other mums who could help out? I had a friend who had a baby herself & she would look after my daughter for a couple of hours once a week so I could sleep/get my hair done. I reciprocated the favour.
6) When you're out with family or they are visiting, make sure your son is passed around - they are then so much less clingy & by the time my daughter was three she would happily stay over at her cousins house which meant we could have the odd night out.
7) If your husband is keen, suggest he takes your son out for a walk in the buggy for a couple of hours on a Sunday afternoon - and have a doze in the bath.
Finally, if you are still feeling down in a few weeks, do go & see your GP. You may have mild PND. I did & had a course of AD's for six months which was enough to see me through.
Apologies if that's a bit of a ramble - but it happens to loads of new mums, you are doing brilliantly and you WILL get through it & feel loads better. I promise. Sending big hugs x
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