Struggling with a baby and toddler(10 Posts)
Ds is 7 weeks. Dd is 2.5 years. I feel that I'm doing such a bad job of it and neither is getting the attention they deserve.
Dd goes to nursery 3 days a week, which I feel guilty about (reduced from the full 5 days she did when I was working). She enjoys it though. When she is home, I go to baby and toddler groups in the mornings, but I find it hard to look after both if the baby awakes. I try and talk to the other people, but I often can't talk for long. I never went to them with dd before and was so surprised how many grandparents go them. I'm so jealous as my parents and MIL are not local. Although I have had 2 days help from MIL which I was grateful for.
Ds is now resisting naps and will now only do it in the car seat at the weekend when out and about (when Dh is home - I have a license, but developed a fear of driving) and in the pram. With dd I had all the time to rock her, but now I don't. I managed to get 20 mins doing sssh and pat, but I just need him to sleep in his basket by self settling (fine at night). I feel guilty that dd has just dropped her nap and I stick a film on each afternoon she is home as I have little jobs to catch up on like bottles to make. Ds doesn't like a sling and dd gets jealous and demands to be picked up and hugged.
I get frustrated and take it out on my Dh in the evening. Dd was refusing to let me brush her teeth last night and I swore. She then kept on repeating it during her stories. I felt so bad.
Sorry. I didn't mean to go on for so long. I just needed to get it off my chest.
I found it really hard too mine are now 2 and 4 its still really hard but way more fun. You are giving yourself much too much a hard time nursery is great a film for chill out time lovely. If you get stuff out of toddler group grand if you dont maybe wait until little one can at least lie / sit with a few toys to go back. Dd will be ok with pottering at home. Soon (I really hope) it will be warmer - you can get them outside walk a bit more. If baby settles at night try black out blinds and white noise.
Oh and I had days when I took this sort of advice and lots of rubbish shouty days too. So love being back at work.
This will be me shortly when i have DS but we dont have the luxury of nursery. What does your DD enjoy doing? Could you set her with an activity whilst nursing DS e.g nursing her doll or colouring in?
This will be me come September! I know it's going to be tough and can't afford for ds to keep going to childminder when I'm on mat leave so will have both of them 5 days a week! My plan is out every morning to group/soft play have lunch then chill. A film afternoon once ds drops his nap will be very frequent! As will lots of walks! Your doing a good job just keep going
I have a 19 month age gap and ds is now 2.3 and dd is almost 8 months. It gets easier. I promise!
I found 2-6 months hard, mainly because of naps, or rather lack thereof. I'd struggle to get dd to nap during the day then she would become an over tired scream machine by 5 o clock and I couldn't really settle her properly until ds went to bed at 7.30. It was miserable. I perserved for a long time trying to get her to sleep in her bouncy chair and had some, limited success. I also used the sling a lot. I was/am lucky that ds naps well during the day as that was the only time I only had dd (ds didn't go to nursery, no willing gp).
Can you go out in the buggy in the morning so the baby sleeps and then let him nap on you in the afternoon whilst your dd watches a film and has some quiet time?
I've been there. It's just shit and all I can say is it gets better .
Please try to let go of any guilt you have about watching TV etc. It's really important that you have a break in the day for your sanity and when they drop.the nap it's grim.
And definitely let go of guilt about nursery . I also had it but now looking back it was crazy to feel guilty. Everyone benefits and you can spend the day testing to look after them better.
I'm sure you're not doing a bad job, its just a really tough job to be doing at the moment hence you feel you aren't doing well. I have a similar age gap and I found it really challenging and seemed to feel continually guilty - guilty that I wasn't playing with my 2.5 yr old so much, guilty that I wasn't taking as many photos of the baby as I had with my first, guilty that I wasn't taking baby to as many groups as I did with my first, guilty that messy play for toddler was on hold as I couldn't supervise and look after baby... you get the idea.
But, it really does get better and now 2 years on they do actually entertain each other some of the time
when they are not fighting
And definitely don't feel guilty about nursery - my toddler carried on with his pre-existing nursery pattern as I felt this provided stablity/continuity for him, was stimulating for him and was good for baby as baby had some one on one mummy time.
When DS2 was a baby and ds1 was 2, it was my hardest year of parenting by far. Go really really easy on yourself. You're doing a great job. Here's some things that got me through it...
1) baby in a sling. Especially when going out so you're not having to wait to go out when the baby is napping and you have hands free for your toddler. Also it crams in your snuggly time with the baby as their head is so close to kiss!
2) careful choice of place to go together in the day. I found visiting friends and playgroups the best places to go in the day, and the park.
3) easily, my worst days were ones that I didn't have adult company. Make sure you talk to adults in the day otherwise just conversation with small ones that won't see you looking tired or sad will be really grating.
4) take any help with your DD. It sounds like she loves nursery so don't don't don't feel guilty. As soon as my ds1 went to preschool things got a lot easier.
5) forget everyday baths, just do them when they need them.
6) do easy meals, especially early on ds1 and I ate stuff that went straight from the freezer to the oven to the plate!
Hope that helps... Good luck and keep talking to mumsnet and your mum-friends.
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