How do you stop being resentful of your partner's social life?

(82 Posts)
Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Jun-14 11:36:45

I have an 11 week old DS who is exclusively breast fed. This obviously ties me to him but that's absolutely fine as it's my preferred method of feeding.

My DH is wonderful, I'm not complaining about him at all.....but sometimes I feel so resentful that he gets to live his life whilst mine is halted.

It's not even that I want some 'me time' as I absolutely love being with DS, I hate being parted from him (I have left him someone for 30 minutes and it felt awful) but sometimes I just wish that when I am stuck at home I didn't feel so jealous of my DH's freedom.

He's just left now to go and play Zorb Football and then go out for a meal whereas I'm sat at home with a sleeping baby listening to it rain heavily outside and know I'm destined for another day indoors.

Pre-DS we always did things together and now DH still does the same things except I'm normally not there anymore.

I don't begrudge it him, I would never stop him doing anything and he is brilliant with DS and the care of him is shared....but sometimes, I just want to scream at him and say, "Don't you realise how f**king lucky you are!!" when he takes it for granted how easily he can just jump in his car and have his free time.

whereisshe Sat 07-Jun-14 11:38:17

You're being far too nice. I'd begrudge it (if it were a regular occurrence!). Why isn't he at h

whereisshe Sat 07-Jun-14 11:38:31

Oops!
Why isn't he at home helping you?

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Jun-14 11:49:29

I don't need help at home - he's really good with all that. He cooks most nights, does the house work, will get up with DS in the night etc despite having to go to work in the morning so he doesn't leave things to me and constantly tells me to relax during the day and not think I have to get all the stuff done around the house just because I'm at home as opposed to being at work.

I'm just jealous that he can still have his 'baby free' time, visit his friends and indulge in his hobbies etc when I can't. It sounds so petty.

melissa83 Sat 07-Jun-14 11:51:39

Cant you leave him with baby?

itiswhatitiswhatitis Sat 07-Jun-14 11:55:01

It's not petty at all and it is very hard work being tied to a breast fed baby. But it sounds like your DH is supportive and when the time comes and you can leave baby for longer you will have the opportunity to do so. I guess you just need to tell yourself it's a short term thing and maybe change the way you socialise a bit, meet friends for coffee, have friends over for take aways whilst your DH looks after baby upstairs.

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Jun-14 11:55:16

Baby is breast fed and like I said, I hate being away from him smile
I suck it up when it comes to my lack of freedom as I know it's through my own choices, but at the same time I'm still jealous of my DH. There's no sense to it, I know.

melissa83 Sat 07-Jun-14 11:56:09

You can still go out if they are breastfed? Dont really get the problem if you dont actual want to though

itiswhatitiswhatitis Sat 07-Jun-14 11:57:42

Depends on the baby Melissa, ds2 never had a set feeding pattern and sometimes went 2 hours between feeds sometimes 30 minutes.

melissa83 Sat 07-Jun-14 11:58:28

Can you not give bm in bottle though?

BertieBotts Sat 07-Jun-14 11:59:09

I don't think he should be going out so much. It's natural that you'd feel resentful/left out if his life hasn't changed at all whereas yours has changed entirely!

Practical support is great and it sounds like he's doing his share. But emotional support is important too! It's sad that he's going off to do things without you. He sounds nice, why don't you tell him how you're feeling? Say you don't begrudge him getting to do things but you'd like to spend more time together like you used to.

11 week olds are portable, you can go out and do things together - okay probably not football, but a meal, wandering round places, visiting friends, even drinks and lunch in a family orientated pub.

There will be time later when you feel happier leaving your DS and that is the time to take turns and go out alone but now it's a really special (and short) time where they're tiny and you can do loads of stuff together while juggling this tiny amazing creature that you two made.

BertieBotts Sat 07-Jun-14 12:00:26

I totally get that you don't want to go out and it is a confusing feeling - not jealousy but it's more about being left out or feeling like your priorities/life has changed and you're quite alone with that. I'm sure he's not meaning to make you feel this way, it probably hasn't occurred to him. Talk to him smile

Lanabelle Sat 07-Jun-14 12:00:33

What about expressing and trying that, just for a bit freedom - not as a permanent thing or anything just to give you a bit of a break and time to see your friends? just a suggestion

Viviennemary Sat 07-Jun-14 12:00:53

You have made the choice that you won't leave your baby for longer than half an hour. It's a free choice and doesn't have to be this way. But you exjpect your partner to do the same. Don't you go out together with the baby. Sorry I am not quite getting this.

BertieBotts Sat 07-Jun-14 12:03:37

I guess you will get quite a split response... but it's okay to not want to leave your baby but also feel a bit resentful on some level that your partner doesn't seem to have to make that choice. It's not always about the pre baby life - I mean, if you wanted the pre baby life you wouldn't have had a child, right?! It's more about feeling that you're in it together, I think.

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Jun-14 12:12:35

It's not that I can't go out, of course I can, but it's just not as easy anymore.

I went out for a family meal last week but had to leave after 10 minutes because DS was so upset (it was late in the day and he'd hardly slept). I have a MIL who is very sick in hospital that I can't go and visit because I won't take the baby on the ward, I've had to withdraw from going to a friend's wedding because they've said it's child free, I can't just go out and socialise with friends because by the time they get in from work I'm starting DS's bedtime routine. I can't just on a whim decide to go and do something and just drag DS with me.

It's like feeling I'm in a baby bubble, where everything is centred around the baby (which is obviously fine, I love the bones of him) wand I'm looking out at the rest of the world that just carries on as normal.

QTPie Sat 07-Jun-14 12:18:39

I exclusively breastfed too, but at 7/8 weeks old started back at the gym/pool (couple of times a week) and DH started sports again (couple of times a week) - he would go after bath time which DH always did (I had a C Section - so it was too awkward for me - and it was DS/DH bonding time).

So time to follow your own interests is good - for BOTH of you. Don't begrudge DH doing a couple of things, but get organised so that you can do a couple of things too. BFing does not mean that you can't do things! Have you spotted any regular patterns in feeding? I encouraged regular patterns and took advantage of those. But the basic idea is give them a BIG feed, then dash out and be back for the next (gives you a couple of hours). You can do it!

Maybe worth looking at expressing the occasional feed (you need to get your baby used to it, regularly). It does/will give you more flexibility if/when you want it. If you have family/friends locally, then maybe you can go on a date with your OH (time it well, but leave an expressed bottle).

Also, you need to chat to your DH: things DO change when you have a baby - you need to start looking for things that incorporate all 3 of you. Meals put still happen, but look for somewhere that you can ALL go to - a nice pub lunch, a cafe etcetc. And sometimes maybe DH can bring back a nice take away instead of eating out.

It is all about balance: everyone needs to feel it is working for them. I, like you, loved breastfeeding and being with baby all the time, but regular me time, family time, couple time and DH having his own "me" time helped us to keep sane and keep resentment away smile

possiblyprecious Sat 07-Jun-14 12:18:44

Can you go out and take baby with you? I use slings/wraps quite successfully for this.

ILoveCwtches Sat 07-Jun-14 12:19:15

I completely understand how you are feeling, OP. I'm glad it wasn't just me. I exclusively breastfed my bottle refusing dd. I didn't want to go out and leave her and I didn't want DP to stay home rather than playing football once a week or going to the cinema, on his own, to see a film I wasn't interested in. Yet, I still felt an emotion, which I could only describe as jealousy.

I agree with BertieBotts, though. Looking back it was a very emotionally confusing time and it was more about adjusting to a new life. DP is also very helpful, supportive and great with Dd. We had a chat about how I felt and it did take some explaining as he couldn't understand what I meant, at first. Once he understood, though, I felt this odd emotion less and less. It was as if voicing it made it easier to deal with.

I also discovered that he was a bit jealous of all the quality time I got to spend with Dd. Talking helped, loads.

Try and make the most of your portable baby. Talk to your DH and make sure you get to go out (with baby, if that's what you prefer) and do some nice things. You will both adjust to how you all fit together in your new family.

whereisshe Sat 07-Jun-14 12:20:38

Honestly I think it's fine to feel slightly resentful of your partner for going out. I would have been if DH had been doing that when DD was 11 weeks, and I would have asked him not to. But babies are very portable at that age, I just moved all my catch ups to lunchtime and asked people to come to me. So you can still do things, just not spontaneously as you pointed out.

QTPie Sat 07-Jun-14 12:26:07

It is about making a "new normal" that you can be happy with. Don't look out in the world, start building your own new world. That new world will be centred around your baby (for a few years at least), but you can drive it.

Do you do any baby activities (like baby sensory, Waterbabies)? Do you do any "mum and baby" activities (baby yoga etc)? Do you have other mummy friends (go meet at a cafe or each other's houses)? If you don't, then joining baby activities will help you make some (be proactive and make the effort to get to know them)?

Having things like classes and play dates and even regular walks helps to structure your day. Initially hard to get out to, but you get better at it and you feel better for getting out and achieving things.

Keep trying and don't give up. If you take DS to cafés/pubs, then he will get used to it. Take toys and books, take turns to walk him around. Go places that serve quickly (so you can have a nice meal without bring there forever).

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Jun-14 12:27:57

Thanks everyone for all your support, advice and suggestions. It helps to just get it out.

ilove - I think my DH probably is a bit jealous of the quality time I get with DS. DS is far more comforted and settled when he's with me as opposed to DH and he has said a few times that he'll never have the relationship with DS that I do (when he's a baby anyway).

It makes it easier to think both parties are resentful of the other in some way.

I hate the freedom of dh deciding at 5pm to go for a beer with work mates. My life has altered. My priorities. My beliefs. And so has dh but to a different degree.

It gets better as they age. Life now with a 3ur old is different to a newborn. You will find your way but you have to both work at that.

BrunoBrookesDinedAlone Sat 07-Jun-14 12:58:47

What the fuck? No. This is all wrong. For your DH, too - who has said as much!

Your baby is 11 weeks. You shuld BOTH be enjoying him and sharing the work. BF makes no difference!

Why, for example, isn't your DH going out to football, then coming home, you all get ready and get out for a few hours in the sunshine with your DS, wander round a park, go for coffee, he pushes the pram around for a bit while you get the chance to nip into a few shops for 2 minutes and get a few minutes off without having to leave your baby?

That's what new parents are SUPPOSED to ENJOY doing. It's fun.

It's supposed to change in lovely ways for the both of you. Not neither of you really getting the best out of it because one of you just carries on as they did (slightly depressing really, why bother?!) and the other one feels the strain but not the good bits because they're doing it alone?

' I can't just on a whim decide to go and do something and just drag DS with me.'

You could on the weekend if your partner was actually making the transition into a dad!

He's right about one thing - at this rate, no he isn't going to find he has great memories of the early days to look back on, and no, your baby probably isn't going to bond so closely with him right now. But that's his fault, not the way it needs to be!

What a waste.

BrunoBrookesDinedAlone Sat 07-Jun-14 13:00:10

'I think my DH probably is a bit jealous of the quality time I get with DS'

Well he could be having some great quality time this lovely Saturday, the only one where his tiny son will be 11 weeks old, but he'd rather go to football then out for a meal.

His rather depressing choice!

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