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to feel miffed at friend with new baby

(177 Posts)
DonnaHayward Thu 13-Jun-13 00:18:57

I have namechanged (even though I'm not a prolific poster) because I know AIBU, and I'm ashamed to be feeling this way. I'm hoping MN can talk a bit of sense into me. Apologies for long post.

My BF and I have known each other since school, been close for 15 years, she's one of my favourite people in the world. We've supported each other through a lot of things. She had her first baby, a little boy, in Sept. I am afraid I've started to feel resentful about how our relationship has changed since her DS was born blush.

In the first few months, I was totally sympathetic to how much her life had changed, and tried to be both supportive and unobtrusive. Went to visit when invited, trying to make sure she knew I was always available with practical help without being demanding of her time etc., and completely happy to fit everything around her and her new DS. My problem is, I still feel like this is expected 9 months on, and I'm starting to get a bit fed up.

Her DS has routine which means she can't do anything after 6pm, including having people other than her and her DH in the house (as it is their family bonding time). I think this it lovely that they prioritise this, but must admit that it rules out almost all social activity, and is getting on my nerves now DS is 9 months old and not a tiny baby. My only opportunity to see them is weekend afternoons (I work FT), and with weekends being busy for both of us this means I've only seen her half a dozen times since DS arrived, always in or around their home.

I totally know, in this stage of her life, DS and DH come first, but I think what's upset me enough to post here is birthday plans. We are both 30 this year, and idly chatted lots in our 20s about having a big joint event. Obviously that couldn't happen in the way we'd fantasised when younger. She was unable to come to my birthday meal last month, as she can't be apart from DS in the evenings. Hers is in August, and plan is for a group of friends to get together in the park so 'we can all spend time with DS'.

Childish bit now - I want to say 'I'm not that fussed about time with DS, I want to hang out with you!'. I've been through a fair bit in the last 9 months (made redundant, splitting up with LTP), and I've really missed her - both as support and as someone to have fun with.

So... I know I'm being unreasonable, but as I don't have children, hoping you can show me some things from a parent's perspective, and help me to stop resenting a 9 month old baby blush

ladymariner Thu 13-Jun-13 00:23:06

Actually, I don't think YABU, she sounds very precious tbh. Yes I know our babies come first and ds always has and always will, but not at the exclusion of everyone else.

Kleptronic Thu 13-Jun-13 00:27:37

Eh? Your friend is the odd one here. She missed your 30th birthday meal because she couldn't be apart from her 8 month old for one evening? She can't have anyone round after 6pm at night? That is a odd. YANBU.

angusandelspethsthistlewhistle Thu 13-Jun-13 00:28:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

angusandelspethsthistlewhistle Thu 13-Jun-13 00:29:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SirBoobAlot Thu 13-Jun-13 00:29:12

I don't think you're unreasonable to be upset. And I'm intrigued as to what exactly goes on in the evenings if they can't ever have people over. That, however, is not something that you are going to be able to change.

Unfortunately sometimes friendships just drift apart, be it because of children or otherwise. I also don't think it's childish to want to spend some time with your friend without her DS there; Jesus, I love my DS more than life itself, but have no shame in admitting that sometimes I just want to see my friends without having to pretend to be a dinosaur wink

Honestly this sounds like a lot of her behavior; she couldn't join you for a meal? Why? Even if she is breastfeeding, she could feed baby, put him to bed, make sure he's settled, and still join you for part of the meal, then be back in time for the next feed. Not having people over after 6pm because they're 'bonding' every night is simply odd.

Think you might have to accept that her life has changed a hell of a lot, and she is no longer the friend you want her to be. I know that sucks.

WestieMamma Thu 13-Jun-13 00:29:26

I don't think YABU either. My baby is 8 weeks old today and I can't wait till Friday when my husband is off work to look after baby so I can escape for the day with my friend.

YANBU, IMO. I've recently 'lost' the friendship of my best friend of ten years due to her meeting a new partner and having two children in quick succession, meaning that our plans, interests, and time off never gel together any more. It's not easy.

I think it depends on her - is she the kind of person who you can be a bit blunt with and say 'hey, your baby's great, but god i miss YOU, can you get a night off?' If not, it might be time to search out new friendships.

DoJo Thu 13-Jun-13 00:31:46

YANBU - unless she is not with her son's father then there should be no reason why she can't leave a 9 month old with him and go out, or even have people round in the evenings every so often. Have you told her explicitly that you want to spend some time with her on your own?

PrincessOfChina Thu 13-Jun-13 00:32:11

YANBU. I would feel very sad over that situation. I hate the way some women feel they have to give up their whole lives when they have children.

YANBU, although don't resent the baby, he's 9 months do and not making the decisions, resent your friend for being so ridiculous about it all.

I cannot stand people who act like having a baby is this sort of miracle event that must be all consuming, and that they are apparently the only people on the world ever to have had a baby, EVER. I've had 5 babies and they are really not that hard and aside from quite extreme special needs, they really do not mean that from 6pm you can have no contact with anyone else.

Sounds like you're friend is being unreasonable, I think it's pretty shocking that she missed her best friend's birthday for an eight month old baby. You will of course never be able to raise this with her as you don't have children and that is all she will say. I think you just need to accept that having a baby has made your friend an arsehole!

WilsonFrickett Thu 13-Jun-13 00:36:27

Well I think the term PFB was coined for this situation. And I dont blame you for feeling upset about it. But she will come out of this phase eventually and probably be mortified about her PFB behaviour.

The question really is - do you tell her how you feel, do you cut her off, or do you wait for her?

DonnaHayward Thu 13-Jun-13 01:05:54

Thanks so much all - it actually made me feel better typing all of this out, and even more so having responses that don't make me feel like a monster!

I know that if I raised any of these feelings with her she would be very upset - she really is a lovely person - and I feel that one of the reasons our friendship has lasted so long is that we're always supportive of each other. I really don't want her to feel I'm not supportive of her now. Conversations with mutual friends have hinted that we all feel a bit similarly, but we're not the type of group to bitch behind each other's back (another reason we've been close for so long).

I really know nothing about and am not that interested in babies, which is one of the reasons I wanted opinions on here. I expected her to be totally focused on the baby for a while, but thought that after 6 months or so she might be able to have a few hours away in the evening. She does EBF, and BF on demand - he feeds a lot in the evening, which is why she doesn't like to leave him. She has not been apart from him for longer than a shower since he was conceived, and I can imagine how hard the idea of leaving him for even a few hours must be (I was fretting and asking for photo-messages the first day I left my dog with the dog-sitter blush)

Her parenting decisions are entirely her choice, and I do admire her utter devotion to DS - but just looks like I might have to wait a bit longer for her to feel able to spend time away from him. (Must admit glad to hear I'm not awful to be a bit hurt by her not coming to my birthday sad).

Sounds like it might be okay to gently suggest a girly night as he approaches a year?

DonnaHayward Thu 13-Jun-13 01:07:16

She is the first in our close group of friends to have a baby, btw - one of the reasons I feel awful is thinking that she must be feeling excluded in different ways too.

BergholtStuttleyJohnson Thu 13-Jun-13 01:08:10

YANBU to feel that way but it may be that her baby us very clingy or difficult. My ds1 was si easy and quickly in a routine, I could leave him with dh and go out or have people over in tge evenings and he'd just sleep in his cot upstairs. It was great!
Then I had ds2 who fed hourly over night until he was 10 months old when he started going 2-3 hrs, he would only sleep next to me and nowhere else (believe me I tried) so I went to bed at 6.30 every night. He is now 15 months and I have just managed to get him to sleep in his cot but he's still waking too often for me to leave him and go out and he feeds for an hour before bed and doesn't settle until about 8.30. I have no time to myself ever and it's really hard. Her baby is still quite young and may be challenging like my ds2. If she's still behaving how she is when he's two then it may be a problem but for now try not to be resentful.

RikeBider Thu 13-Jun-13 01:10:42

Priorities change when you have a baby - for her spending time with her ds and partner is the priority now not socialising with friends.

Seeing someone 6 times in 9 months doesn't sound that bad to me either.

Neither of you is particularly being unreasonable, just different things are important to you now.

HullMum Thu 13-Jun-13 01:15:30

YABVU.

Her priorities have changed and she is doing what makes herself happy. She isn't being "precious" or anything. I she were with you and not enjoying herself because she is doing it only to make you happy, would you really want that?

You are welcme to say really I need more form a friend and look elsewhere but equally she is entitle to not want to give more;

HullMum Thu 13-Jun-13 01:17:14

Sounds like it might be okay to gently suggest a girly night as he approaches a year?

Nothing wrong with suggesting but equally nothign wrong with her turning you down

BergholtStuttleyJohnson Thu 13-Jun-13 01:18:31

Just read your latest post. You say that she hasn't left him longer than to have a shower and he feeds lots in the evening. It may be that she can't leave him longer without him screaming his head off. She may have loved to have gone to your birthday but couldn't leave him because she needs to breastfeed him. Not everything we do as parents is our choice, sometimes we just do what works.

HullMum Thu 13-Jun-13 01:19:59

People just don't realie that everyone don't care about their children as much as they do.

NO but not everyone cares about your birthday as much as you do either. If the friend isnt havin people over after 6 there is either a very good reason for it or she wants to cool things off with the friend.

vvviola Thu 13-Jun-13 01:35:35

Just to give you a different perspective:

DD2 is 22 months and I haven't been out after 6:30pm since she was born. She is breastfed (allergies meant my great plans of weaning by a year didn't work) and will not settle at night for anyone but me. Up until 2 months ago she was waking at least 5 times a night.

I haven't got many friends here (we emigrated a year ago) but I have had to turn down a few invitations out.

When DD2 was 6 months to about 15 months I would probably have said something about family time after 6pm, but it would have been code for "I'm so blood tired by then that I am incapable of speech", but I was too proud to admit just how hard I was finding it.

(I do leave her during the day, as I'm studying part time, but even that was hard until she hit a year)

It probably isn't personal, and I don't blame you for feeling a bit put out, but I'd suggest cutting her a bit of slack. Even my very closest friends didn't know how hard I was finding it. And DD2 certainly isn't a PFB (although I will admit to occasional flashes of precious-last-baby)

cranverry Thu 13-Jun-13 01:36:24

YANBU I didn't like being away from my babies in the evening before they were around 9 months as they were bf and tended to be more fussy in the evening. . But I would have made the effort for a froend's 30th. I would also have made plans to meet you for a few hours on my own during the day for a coffee, lunch ect and I'd have invited friends over in the evening. I'd be quite concerned about a friend who was acting similarly to your friend.

My baby screamed unless held, BF every 3-4 hours round clock until he was almost 18 months. I was off my head with sleep deprivation and stress. He would not settle for anyone else and I was so exhausted I used to hallucinate. He needed a strict routine or became even more distressed and BF even more and screamed even more. Daily life became a case if coping hour by hour round the clock.

He was later diagnosed with autism.

Sometimes you just can't do anything except cope with your baby and adult social life and non baby life things just get put on hold.

It will pass but she may not be able to do any more than she is doing right now - she may not be able to talk about it either.

Nobody knew I was barely coping and there wasn't time to explain. I was so exhausted and frightened that even if they'd asked I would have said I was fine. I didn't have the resources to cope with people as well as DS, even ones wanting to help.

I hope it's not like that for her but go easy on her: the all-consuming responsibility and helpless need a baby had for you can be pole-axing, even if the baby isn't high-need/special needs.

DonnaHayward Thu 13-Jun-13 01:55:16

I've really welcomed all responses on here - YANBU and YABU. Those of you explaining about how demanding your babies were at that age have reinforced my suspicion that I am blissfully ignorant (blithely thinking 'surely by 8 months you can feed, express, settle with dad and go out for the night'). I accept completely that may not be the case!

Am off to bed now with lots to think about - glad the majority feel I'm not unreasonable to be struggling with the adjustment in our friendship, but being reminded that I have to think about all the factors of which I have little understanding. Especially will keep reminding myself of TigOldBitties comment - I have been feeling very guilty about occasional feelings of resentment towards the baby, as I do believe that mine and BF's friendship will continue past this stage and I want to be able to bond with him too. Of course you are right that he isn't making any decisions.

Good first AIBU experience - thank you all smile

DonnaHayward Thu 13-Jun-13 01:58:44

And ... some of the experiences you describe sound so difficult - I'm in awe of what you've been able to cope with, TrucksandDinosaurs, vvviola and others. You are amazing.

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