Does anybody love or feel fulfilled by parenthood most of the time?

(31 Posts)
BerstieSpotts Tue 22-Oct-13 12:24:04

Starting to get a bit jaded following recent threads on here. It seems like a lot of us are struggling and finding it hard. Just wondered if we could have some hope!

If you really, genuinely, enjoy it and love it most of the time, please tell me about it! What age are your DCs, anything you think makes it easier, anything in particular you love.

gourd Tue 22-Oct-13 13:05:55

Nope. It's really, really hard work. Luckily I am so focussed (out of neccesity) on getting through each day, getting to and from work, working, remembering and then doing most of the things that need to be done, packing the things that need packing for the next day, sorting out the bills and payments that need sorting out, buying/cooking the food that needs cooking for next weeks meals, and 100 small admin tasks (and forgetting people's birthdays since LO was born) that I cant feel sorry for myself or wish i hadn't done it.. LO is lovely and wouldnt be without her, but most days I am too busy and often too stressed to notice or to feel what a great time I am having. All normal I think.

kelda Tue 22-Oct-13 13:13:21

I do. I have other stresses and worries in my life but it's my children who keep me going. I look forward to seeing them every day after school. I look forward to the holidays when I can be with them more. I didn't see the children all day yesterday and that made me sad.

I wouldn't say they are the easiest of children - the girls (9 and 8) fight like cat and dog. Ds aged 5 wakes up crying most nights.

They are what gets me through the days (and nights...)

MolotovCocktail Tue 22-Oct-13 13:22:53

Parenting is hard. My dd's are 4.8yo and 18mo and I'm dealing with aspects of their development that is all new to me and fairly tricky (dd1 having just started ft school; dd2's toddler tantrums).

It can be exhausting but the realisatio of how much I love them catches me by surprise sometimes - moments I least expect - and I become overwhelmed by the strength of the loving, benevolent feelings I have for them. I'd do literallly anything for them.

And I remember how much I wanted them. I remember how very fortunate I am to have them.

BanjoPlayingTiger Tue 22-Oct-13 13:28:47

I love it! My kids are 13 and 10 and I love it. I love the debates we have around the dinner table and the games we play on an evening. I love seeing them develop into people with their own thoughts and opinions on life. I love hearing them play their musical instruments and listening to them sing together as they wash up after tea.
When they were tiny I found it extremely difficult but the older they have got, the better it is.

MolotovCocktail Tue 22-Oct-13 13:35:59

That's a lovely post, banjo. Lots to look forward tosmile

Mintyy Tue 22-Oct-13 13:36:34

Yes, I am very happy about being a parent. Of course I don't find parenthood totally fulfilling, I am about more than just my children.

My dc are 12 and 10 but I honestly think I have felt like this more or less all the time I've had them, apart from when they have been ill for long stretches (those early winters with never ending coughs and temperatures) and when I was sleep deprived. And of course there have been some horrendous days when I felt like running away, but those never stretched on into weeks or months.

When they were much younger the children had a routine (not Gina Ford-like) but a fairly consistent routine, which made the days a bit samey but manageable at the same time.

Also when they were younger I was a sahm without money worries, so from age 1 upwards they went to a childminder for one day per week, then 2 half day sessions at playgroup (without me) from age 2 and then school nursery from age 3.5. I also had a good network of local friends (thanks NCT) and live in London where there is plenty to do, even if its just a bus ride to see the sights. If I had had parental support in addition and been able to do a part time job I think that would have been perfect!

But I wouldn't say I am the most maternal person and I never had a great urge to have children. I assumed I wouldn't until I suddenly got broody at 36/37. Perhaps I have found it relatively painless because I was older, had a good hands-on partner who actively enjoys spending time with his dc, a comfortable house and enough money, good playgroups and friends within walking distance, and children who slept pretty well (because we were not afraid to sleep train them at 10 months).

I realise that I have been very lucky.

Meglet Tue 22-Oct-13 13:37:55

Nope. It's gruelling 99% of the time. I'm in survival mode.

Habbibu Tue 22-Oct-13 13:39:40

I do. They are 4 and 7 and really nice wee people. They're kind and funny and cuddly and they make me laugh. And I'm really proud of them because they are turning into decent little humans who I can learn from. It does help that DH is also ace, does his fair share of everything and we really are a team. I'm really, really lucky, I know.

Eletheomel Tue 22-Oct-13 13:46:27

I love having my boys (4.5 months and 4 years) and am loving maternity leave just now so I can spend time with them (I started working part-time when I had DS1).

My 4 year old is a very affectionate boy and for all he can do my head in at times, everyday he does something that just fills me with smiles (yesterday he told me he was writing 'i love mummy' in his magazine - so sweet as he can't write anything other than a letter A :-)

My 4.5 month old isn't sleeping the best recently but his smiles first thing in the morning lights up my day (as do his giggles when you tickle his ribs).

We were ttc-ing for several years with no success and had started to think we'd never even manage to have one child, so to have two still amazes me.

My husband is very hands-on and he's a great support to me and loves spending time with the boys and us, so we all love weekends so we can spend time as a family. In all honesty, having kids is the best thing I've ever done, I just wish I was younger and didn't suffer such appalling morning sickness as I'd definitely have had more, whereas as it is, I've reached my quota.

SleepyFish Tue 22-Oct-13 13:49:40

I do. Does'nt seem to be the done thing to admit that on here though. I'm a single parent, work and am studying for a degree so life not exactly stress free but there's no one in the world I'd rather spend my time with than my 5 yr old ds. He's just great company, admittedly he has a lovely nature, never tantrums and pretty much does what he's told
That's not to say some days aren't testing but generally I really enjoy motherhood and I didn't even want children but he has such an infectious enthusiasm for everything I genuinely feel blessed to have him in my life. There, I said it.
You can all stop being sick now. wink

elQuintoConyo Tue 22-Oct-13 13:50:26

DS is nearly 2, so it's earlish days, he started sleeping through about 4 months ago - that was a great turning point! He's just started nursery 4 hours a day, after a month he's just settling in, it's been harder for DH than for me, he was really effected. I started back at October, so life has really changed in the last month.
However, DS is a funny, bright spark made of spun light and unicorn giggles! <boak> he is very affectionate which warms my heart and helps forgive him for being a whiney whingepants at times!

Life can be a drudge, but I'm delighted with our LO.

(Sorry that was waffley, does it at least answer your question?!)

SuperiorCat Tue 22-Oct-13 13:51:32

I do. It's not always easy as I have a big age gap and one of each, one who has minor LDs so they don't have much in common, but twee though it sounds, they bring me such joy each day and I love spending time with them.

I'm looking forward to half term next week so I can be with them.

siblingrevelry Tue 22-Oct-13 13:52:56

I love it - have imagined the children I would have, the things I would do with them since I was very little, having children was always going to be on the agenda (health permitting).

My children are 6, 5 and almost 2, and hand on heart I can say it hasn't been as difficult for me as we are led to believe. I went back to work (already pg with planned baby no 2!) when eldest was one, then promptly got made redundant and have been a SAHM since.

I sometimes feel like I'm chasing my tail, especially now we've just started beavers/after school activities, so there's a bit of rushing to get tea done/homework done etc, but I would much rather be at home with my kids than anything else; I worked in various fields from age 18-30, and being a SAHM is much easier than paid employment! We struggle financially, but in general the lifestyle we have suits our family.

We have bad days when I turn into shouty fishwife, but generally I think we're a happy household and I don't find parenting stressful.

I also don't understand this thing of 'parental guilt' people talk about, as though it's automatically triggered once you become a parent. I try to do my best, and make many mistakes but don't automatically feel guilt as I only act with their best interests at heart, so if I do screw up it's never intentional.

I'm sure the passing of time helps give a rose-tinted view, and I can vaguely recall the hell of sleep deprivation, and struggling to bf etc, but I have been very lucky in having 3 children who I can tell already are going to be amazing people as they grow.

MrsBennetsEldest Tue 22-Oct-13 14:00:54

Mine are grown up now ( all but one) and I have loved it, in fact I often wish I could turn the clocks back and do it again. Not to do anything different but to have that time with them. Yes, it's been exhausting, yes, I have cried with utter bloody frustration but they have made me who I am today and I hope I have shaped who they have become. Children grow up when you are not looking. It was always the little positive things that helped like comments from strangers about their good manners or that they were/ are a credit to me. When I look at them now I am still bowled over with love/pride. I am a soppy idiot I know but I think they have turned out rather well. ( off to find a tissue, bloody hormones).

elQuintoConyo Tue 22-Oct-13 14:04:43

DH was affected jeez Lousie, wouldn't think I'm an English teacher blush

JemimaPuddle Tue 22-Oct-13 14:14:09

I find it very hard but would not change it. It's easier now youngest is nearly 2 (oldest is 3.5) and find not having time to myself very difficult.
I read a poem on here once that I look at most days to remind me to enjoy the now. It's soppy but here it is:

To My Grown-Up Son

by Alice E. Chase

My hands were busy through the day,
I didn't have much time to play
The little games you asked me to,
I didn't have much time for you.

I'd wash your clothes; I'd sew and cook,
But when you'd bring your picture book
And ask me, please, to share your fun,
I'd say, "A little later, son."

I'd tuck you in all safe at night,
And hear your prayers, turn out the light,
Then tiptoe softly to the door,
I wish I'd stayed a minute more.

For life is short, and years rush past,
A little boy grows up so fast,
No longer is he at your side,
His precious secrets to confide.

The picture books are put away,
There are no children's games to play,
No goodnight kiss, no prayers to hear,
That all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands once busy, now lie still,
The days are long and hard to fill,
I wish I might go back and do,
The little things you asked me to.

MolotovCocktail Tue 22-Oct-13 14:23:17

Jemima, that poem has just made me cry a little sad

Glad you posted it though smile

JemimaPuddle Tue 22-Oct-13 14:29:43

It makes me a bit teary too Molotov, I hope it keeps me mindful of how quickly this time will pass.

happyyonisleepyyoni Tue 22-Oct-13 15:07:39

It's an absolute crazy roller coaster, but I treasure cuddles with my 2 year old so much. I also have 11 and 13 yo and they are great, but I can't believe how quickly they have grown out of the little kid stage.

AlfalfaMum Tue 22-Oct-13 15:28:18

I agree it's easier as they get a little older and everyone's getting enough sleep etc. When my dc were small, it seemed like someone was always sick or crying or angry or being assessed for autism.. hmm there were moments of pure joy to carry us through too of course smile

My favourite moments are when they all play nicely together. DD2 and DD3 wrote sweet little love notes to each other last week smile
We've just started getting DD1 to babysit and that has brought out the best in her as a big sister. She could be quite mean competitive with them despite being a lot older, but we can finally see a more good-natured big sister persona developing.

Also, days everyone can wipe their own bum and I hardly know myself!

AlfalfaMum Tue 22-Oct-13 15:28:50

these days!

yes I love it. today has been the hardest 18mo and I have d&v, dh had to go to an important meeting and the newborn won't be put down. everyone keeps crying and I just want to lie down in a dark room on my front without my boobs leaking but I keep looking at their little faces and love them. I don't want them to grow up!

WestieMamma Tue 22-Oct-13 16:42:43

The only time I don't love it is when he's been up lots during the night and I've not had enough sleep. But this time round is immeasurably easier than last time. DS is the happiest little baby I have ever come across. He literally never cries, just grizzles a bit when tired but stops immediately on being picked up. My DD, 20 years old now, made me think 'never again'. She was hard work.

BerstieSpotts Wed 30-Oct-13 10:27:59

Ooh gosh, sorry, I started this ages ago and then got caught up in other things and was too busy to come back to it.

Thanks for all your responses. It's really interesting and heartwarming to read smile I've been feeling a bit crappy recently but have perked up in the last few days and am enjoying DS more. I've been more able to see that his sometimes annoying traits are just that - sometimes annoying and not a reflection of his whole personality. (And mostly due to his age.)

Alfalfa what are the age gaps between your three? DS is 5 and will probably be 7 or 8 by the time we have another, but then we want a more usual age gap between that and the next one (I do frequently think I must be insane...)

siblingrevelry I thought it was interesting what you said about guilt. I tend to feel guilt when I know what I should have done in a situation but I was too tired/grumpy/the situation was too quick for me to think about it, or at times when I feel I should have been able to predict the future and prevent a situation from occurring - confused Who knows where that one comes from. I do try to act in my child's best interests but I feel that as humans we are not always capable of doing the thing we know is right all the time. Perhaps I just have too high standards?

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