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Feeling isolated / sad / alone / friendless.

(30 Posts)
SomethingsAmiss Fri 07-Mar-14 13:40:29

I feel like the worst mother in the world. I can't wait to go back to work. My baby has been through so much and deserves a better mother than me, I just upset her, I think she hates me. She would rather lie in her cot or play in her gym than be held by me. She won't take food from me.

I dread getting up every day, I live for going to bed but even that is tinged with dread at the thought of getting up. I cry through most days. I feel so isolated and alone. I feel like I don't know what I'm doing.

It's not even as if I'm a new mother, but my older daughter hates me too. They are both closer to my husband. I try so hard with my older daughter to do lovely things with her, but it is him she runs to and wants to put her to bed.

I have very few friends. I struggle with confidence and self esteem and rarely reach out to people, and deep down I always hoped that actually my acquaintances were friends and would be there for me when the chips were down. When my baby was born she was very ill for a long time and in intensive care, I too was admitted with the same illness, and yet in the 10 weeks we lived away (she in icu and hdu, and me in hospital then B&B) only 3 people visited us and 2 were my parents. This was after I had reached out to people, so I was right they are just acquaintances and nobody cares. People rallied round my husband and older daughter at home carrying on with their lives. Our 'best friends' have not contacted us since she was born - these people we have holidayed with numerous times and have so much history and they don't even care.

I am struggling to get over what we went through last year. When I think about it I break down. I didn't take the psychiatric help on offer at the time and it's too late now. My daughter has as yet unspecified disabilities (time will tell) and is certainly blind, I don't feel I can cope with it. I see my doctor regularly for other (physiological) issues, and she used to ask me 'how's your mood?' But doesn't any more. The postnatal period has passed and I should have got over the trauma of last year on my own.

I was prolific on Facebook (because I'm so isolated) but last week I deactivated my account. It seemed so shallow, people making empty promises and faking concern. I don't want to see photos of everybody else's healthy babies all developing normally. I don't want so-called friends knowing what is going on in our lives when they can't pick up a phone and show concern. Now I have truly isolated myself but I don't want to be on there any more.

I know people judge me for returning to work, they act shocked, how could I leave my disabled baby with a childminder? How can I? She is better off with a CM who stimulates her. Life with me is boring. I don't know what to do with her, my heart sinks when she wakes up. I'm not a baby person. I love doing things with my toddler (I struggled on mat leave with her too) but I find the baby so boring hmm I worry constantly that I should do more with her and I have lots of equipment to use with her but when I try she just screams. I'm sure other mothers would do the right thing by their disabled babies to push them on, and I'm holding her back if anything.

I have one true friend but he is male, my husband does not like me being friends with him and I have faked a fall-out and now we meet in secret (very rarely as I have the baby all the time - we have met about 5 times in a year) and communicate by text. I know this is terrible but without this friend I would have nobody at all.

We were virtually housebound til December due to feeding issues - she vomited constantly and I dreaded a group situation. In December I steeled myself and joined baby swimming and sensory but I find it an ordeal. I'm friendly to people but they don't seem to warm to me and I never make long term friends from these groups. I don't understand how to make friends like that.

We have no family around and DH and I haven't been out as a couple for 3 years. We haven't had sex for over a year. He is wonderful but works a lot and I do not get any 'me time'. I look and feel a mess, most days I don't get properly dressed. If it wasn't for all the hospital visits I would've spent my entire mat leave in my pyjamas.

I don't know why I'm posting this really, I just am having a particularly bad day - I did something terrible earlier and upset my baby by trying to get her to eat, and now I'm struggling to forgive myself for it. I think I just need some help but I don't know what sort or where from.

twentyten Fri 07-Mar-14 13:47:09

You poor thing. This sounds so hard. Please don't feel guilty- you are not a bad mother. Please try and be kind to yourself. Health visitor or gp? You need help with all this. Have a cuppa. Get outside even for a few minutes. Good luck.

twentyten Fri 07-Mar-14 13:47:47

You poor thing. This sounds so hard. Please don't feel guilty- you are not a bad mother. Please try and be kind to yourself. Health visitor or gp? You need help with all this. Have a cuppa. Get outside even for a few minutes. Good luck.

JennyOnAPlate Fri 07-Mar-14 13:53:52

My love you are not a bad mother, you are depressed. The dread if tomorrow and of your baby waking up ring so many bells with me...I had PND.

please speak to your gp or hv. You don't have to feel like this, really.

FrankUnderwood Fri 07-Mar-14 13:57:04

You have so much on your plate at the moment. Be kind to yourself.

I also recognise the feeling of PND - it's not too late for help, just pop along to the doctors.

SomethingsAmiss Fri 07-Mar-14 14:04:01

She is 9 months old so I don't think I can have PND. My DH thinks I am depressed but I'm embarrassed to speak to my doctor about it as I have feigned how 'fine' I am for months now and made out I am coping so well in the face of adversity.

All I can focus on is returning to work and feeling like me again, one day, hopefully. Then I feel terrible that I'm so un maternal. Everyone else seems to be so maternal and have lots of friends. I don't know how it has come to this with me. I normally hit the ground running with challenges but motherhood has me beat hmm

Thank you so much for your lovely replies.

You poor thing, I know what it's like to feel so low. It's never too late to get help, you definitely sound depressed. Please see your gp. I have struggled with depression most of my life and know how hard it is to take the first step to get out of the slump. Things will get better once you speak to your gp and tell them just how you're feeling. flowers

I wasn't diagnosed with PND with my second child until he was a year old. It doesn't always appear right away. Lots of people put on a brave face for a long time, you have nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of.

twentyten Fri 07-Mar-14 14:25:55

Please go and see your doctor-and let them know how not fine you are. Write it down if it helps-you write so clearly and movingly.

For many of us being a mum is the hardest thing we ever do-and you have got it tougher than most.Especially if we are used to being able to deal with stuff.

NiaceGuidelines Fri 07-Mar-14 14:46:41

Oh my gosh. Dear you. For goodness sake get back to work and don't feel even a tiny bit of guilt. (easier said than done!) You have given your DD 9 months of full time you. Just because she has a disability why should you extend your maternity leave? She is after all, firstly and foremostly an ordinary child, before she has disabilities. The disabilities she may have are additional and the world around her will learn to adapt.

Those groups are a bloody ordeal. The most friendly group i found was the NCT group and TBH the only friends i have found since becoming a mum are people who were already in my network. That is two people basically!! And i have had to do a degree of initiating to get those friendships going.

Keep going to stuff and just chat to people, if you dont make any long term or even short term friends dont worry, at least you are getting out.

PND is shit. I had it a little and going back to work has helped me. I love my dd and dont feel guilty anymore.

If I were you I'd have a look and see if there are any groups for families with children with additional needs in your area. there is a brilliant one where I live and even though parents arent all life long friends it is a great source of support. You and your dh have been on a journey you wernt expecting. Be kind to yourself.

Not everyone has loads of friends. It just appears that way when you see people chatting in groups.

skyeskyeskye Fri 07-Mar-14 14:54:02

Go easy on yourself you poor thing. You went through quite and ordeal and it does sound like you have PND. There is no time limit on it, just because it's 9 months later doesn't mean it's not PND. Please do go and talk to your doctor about how you feel, he won't think you are mad, just be honest with him.

Don't beat yourself up about going back to work either. If it helps you to feel a little better and to cope with DD and life in general then do it. As you say, DD is happy and stimulated with the CM.

Is there a local toddler group near you, nothing too planned, just a drop-in kind of thing?

Is there a Sure Start Children's Centre in your area? They offer all sorts of help, they have baby groups, free counselling service, courses, and also can provide Home Start home visitors to help you with DD.

There is a lot of help out there if you know where to find it.

Quitelikely Fri 07-Mar-14 14:58:34

OP

Please do not keep suffering in silence. The things you are describing sound very much like PND. You can ring your surgery right now and ask for an emergency appointment. Hopefully you will get prescribed something useful.

Believe me you do not have to feel the way you do. There is help out there. You can also ring your health visitor.

I am also sorry that some of your so called friends have disappeared but there are ways and means to meet other people via groups or city socializer ( I think it's called that).

Good luck OP

iggy155 Fri 07-Mar-14 14:59:45

Hon, you definitely sound like you have PND. I convinced myself I was fine and it took having a minor car accident because I wasn't concentrating to make me ask for help. I didn't get diagnosed with PND until my DD was 8 months old. I was on meds for a couple of years and now life is pretty good. Be kind to yourself x thanks

nerofiend Fri 07-Mar-14 15:06:41

Motherhood is hard OP. It's not all rosy as you see on tv or on facebook. I know that feeling of dread in the mornings very well in the baby stage of both my sons.

I also found the baby stage a real challenge. Take one day, one hour at a time. Be kind to yourself and don't put so my pressure on your social life at the moment.

Making friends as adults is not that easy, even when you try and give the best of yourself. People are busy, live far away, have their own day to day crap to deal with so don't blame yourself.

Deactivating facebook is a good thing as what you see there is not real lives but a silly made up world where people seem to happy all the time. I don't want friendship to be reduced to that.

It might take time but you'll meet people and be out there again. Just give it plenty of time. You're too busy now looking after two small children.

Big hug thanks

Gintonic Fri 07-Mar-14 15:55:17

Please go to your GP. Don't worry about what he or she will think, they have seen it all before. Just go and tell them you are depressed and want help.

Does your DH know how low you are feeling?

handfulofcottonbuds Fri 07-Mar-14 18:03:27

Sweetheart, you are not a bad Mother.

Can your DH go with you to the GP? Sometimes it's so hard to say what you need to when you get in there but maybe having the support from your DH will help. I'm sorry that your GP doesn't recognise the signs when you say you are 'fine'. Is there another GP in eth clinic you can see? Might be easier to let it out when you are not familiar with the person.

You had such a bad start with your DD and your health and with the loneliness too, it's not surprising you feel this way.

I second skyes advice, I work in this field and there is support and company out there for you.

"I dread getting up every day, I live for going to bed but even that is tinged with dread at the thought of getting up. I cry through most days. I feel so isolated and alone. I feel like I don't know what I'm doing."

I absolutely know that feeling and I suspect many, many other people reading this, who have experienced depression, are thinking "yup, that's exactly how depression makes you feel." These feelings are a symptom of something that is happening to your body: they are not the real you. Hold onto that, and for the sake of the real you, call your HV or GP and make an appointment. Take a print-out of your post and show it to them. You are not weird, or bad, or weak, or unmaternal, you are ill. And they are there to help you heal.

I had relatively easy pregnancies, easy births, delightful and easy babies and a lovely OH: PND nearly destroyed me first time round and was not a whole lot of fun the next time around either. So depression can happen to anyone, in any circumstances and means pretty much nothing - it doesn't mean you are weak, it doesn't mean you are a bad mother, it doesn't mean you can't cope, it doesn't mean nobody loves you - it means you have had rotten luck. That's all.

Get help and be very, very gentle and kind to yourself. You deserve it as much as either of your children: you are as precious as they are. It is going to get much, much better, trust me.

handfulofcottonbuds Fri 07-Mar-14 20:57:30

Lovely post theancientmarinator flowers

somethingsamiss - I'm sure if you even just say a few words about how you're feeling the GP/HV will understand and know how to help you.

MarvellousMabel Fri 07-Mar-14 21:19:16

Just to say I had crippling pnd that didn't surface until my baby was 10m old. I broke my finger in a rage smashing it against a wall.

The doctor said he's surprised more people didn't get it, and that it defiteky wasn't too late to get pnd.

MadBusLady Fri 07-Mar-14 21:27:40

You are massively, massively depressed, that's all there is to it. Please just let go of any ideas about it being "too late" to seek help. I suspect it is obvious to everyone around you not just your DH that you are struggling.

What about printing off this thread and giving it to the GP

SomethingsAmiss Fri 07-Mar-14 21:52:11

My doctor is lovely, but young and beautiful. I feel like a whiny teenager. I worry they might not take me seriously and might think I'm just looking for an easy solution. I'm not, I've tried so hard to cope on my own with everything.

My daughters are beautiful. My baby is sunny natured but hard work - she is still on a lot of drugs and has feeding issues. I just feel like I'm failing her so badly. I can't get over what has happened to us but I know I am lucky she survived. I think I need to make an appointment.

I'm really grateful for your replies, thank you so much, it might just push me towards sorting this out before I RTW

rabbitlady Fri 07-Mar-14 21:55:36

you aren't bad, you aren't the only one, you've had/are having a hard time, you need help, you know what to do.

GuineaPigGaiters Fri 07-Mar-14 22:00:34

I felt like this after the birth of my first. I has always been such a natural with kids I couldn't understand WHY I was struggling to much. I also had no friends and no support network. Second time around I found it much easier because I had both.

Fwiw I don't think you have PND, but I do think you are (quite understandably) depressed because of your current circumstances and isolation. Are there any Mn meet up groups near you? You also need to go to your doctor, and explain to him/her just what you have to us. There is nothing wrong with struggling due to a baby and isolation, there is nothing wrong at being better at the toddler stage than the baby stage, and there is absolutely no shame in getting help when things are too much. Things will get easier, and every day is a day closer to you getting back to who you are. Take them one at a time and when your having a shit one remember there is another chance to have a better one tomorrow.

Sending you an un-viperish hug.

GuineaPigGaiters Fri 07-Mar-14 22:04:15

Oh and stop looking around thinking everyone else is loving motherhood and being the perfect parent. They are just good actors. Stepford wives/mothers don't exist, they just fake it better than everyone else. Most people I know have struggled with mother hood at one or several stages. It's just most of us don't admit to it because we're too busy tying to convince the world we're ok!

FolkGirl Sat 08-Mar-14 08:40:30

Oh Something flowers

I didn't have PND (I don't think...) but I hated maternity leave. It was one of the worst times of my life. Days and days of isolation; relentless and thankless chores; and despite all my best efforts being shouted and screamed at by the person I was doing everything for (baby).

A thoroughly fucking miserable time...

You are not alone!

Don't feel bad about going to the GP. You won't be the first person to fake feeling fine when you don't. Everyone whose ever been on anti depressants has done it!

Just go. You deserve to feel better. It will make so much difference.

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