to ask if this is as good as it gets?l(17 Posts)
*Massive first-world problems claxon warning before I begin...*
I was a very successful professional before first DS 5 years ago but ultimately couldn't afford childcare and have no local family (we moved recentlay) so now DS2 is 3 I've been at home for years and feel totally divorced from my profession and who I was before kids. I now feel on a treadmill of housework and school runs (DH does long hours so it's just me and the kids during the week). Every week is the same. I feel I have nothing interesting or intelligent to say to anyone as nothing new happens in my life so I keep myself to myself, I tend to avoid seeing old friends because I don't feel like I have anything to contribute. I started anti-depressants before Christmas but they disagreed with me so I'm trying some others. I feel like my life is stretching ahead of me, like I'm looking at years of the same thing, the same treadmill. We struggled to conceive DS1, this was all I wanted at one point, I feel so awful that I'm not enjoying not my life but is this as good as it gets?
No love, it will get better, honestly.
I felt the same just before my youngest went to school full time, I'd been in the sahm drudge for 8 years in total, and it's HARD!
Can you carve some time to get some exercise, maybe at a class? Or do another class? Just as a way to ease yourself back into the world?
It won't be long now until your days are your own again, and you'll remember how it feels to want to get out there.
It is definitely not as good as it gets.
I did similar, giving up a busy, professional career to be a SAHM and felt like you describe. It was really mind numbing and soul destroying a lot of the time. (Just glad I had MN...)
When DD started nursery I began working a few hours in a totally different field. It's unskilled but I work with the public and I had adult chat again and something to talk about other than children.
Now DD is older and I work while she is at school. It's not the life I had before but it's a good balance between work/being me and home/being mum.
See your friends and just listen if you don't think you have anything to say. You will soon find something to contribute. If you force yourself back into social situations the first few times, you will find it easier as you go along.
I can totally relate! Mine are in Y3 & Y1 and I've just gone back to work p/t. It's not a great salary but it's back in a related profession, keeping my hand in until I have the energy to step up again.
Can you find something else to do around the boys childcare?
Thanks all, I think I feel guilty because we struggled to conceive like I said so our eldest is all we ever wanted, and it's like I've woken up 5 years later a totally different person. I do feel terribly lonely, I do make the effort chatting to Moms at the school gate but my youngest isn't in any childcare and without family help locally I can't meet for coffee etc cos my 2 year old can be a nightmare. Anything just for me, like getting my hair done or an evening class, I do hesitate over cos I'm not contributing to the family financially and everything costs money. But on the other hand, we've no serious money worries, both kids are happy & healthy & I feel like I should be enjoying this more
It sounds to me like you need to get some form of work or volunteer to give you some sense of self back. Ds2 is now towards his free 15 hours of childcare and heading towards school age, so you would only have to pay a small amount of childcare for the youngest? could you look to do something during those times that are just for you. It may not be back in the professional career you used to have but may give you more balance and less of a feeling of the treadmill, plus if you found a job you would have income which you wouldn't feel guilty spending on treats for yourself.
Darling, you are absolutely contributing to your family, I'm sure you're dh wouldn't begrudge you some time out would he?
How about something like coursera OP? It wouldn't get you out of the house like an evening course would, but it's free, and there's loads of courses they run.
I've been where you are, and in some ways I still am, and although having a family is all I ever wanted, I struggle with feeling taken for granted and left behind and lacking skills/ability/a future away from home.
I've worked freelance from home since DCs were tiny but they're both in school now and I feel stifled, lonely and pretty sad. DH is wonderful but works away, often overseas, most weeks.
I've had a few interviews recently but am either over qualified or my skills are a bit out of date as I haven't been in formal work for so long. It's all a bit demoralising.
It's so hard sometimes OP hats off to you. When does your DS turn three ? Is there any chance you could pop him in pre school just for one morning a week before then ? Otherwise could you carve out some time for yourself at weekends - what DH and I used to do was he got Saturday morning and I got the afternoon to do whatever we wanted (within reason!) child free. I used to get a book from the library sometimes and go and sit in a cafe with coffee and cake and sad as it sounds it used to really rejuvenate me. Then some evenings I used to go for a run. You need to prioritise yourself a bit more but it is soul destroying at times the sheer drudgery of SAHMness (and I didn't even have a particularly rewarding/interesting career beforehand!)
Posted too soon! I guarantee you ARE contributing enormously to your family and it sounds like you need a bit of a break, to do something just for you. Can you get to a gym, or an evening class?
Again thank you all for enraging words... DH is very good and helps when he can, but it's like a vicious cycle, he probably works more because we've only one wage coming. He wouldn't resent me any time to myself at all, it's just making sure I make time for it I suppose. By the evenings, I'm so tired I just want to crash on the sofa. But the days are starting to feel like a treadmill of housework & caring which can be exhausting at times (2 year old in particular can be pretty challenging at times!). I feel awful saying it all, we're all healthy, I'm not under pressure to work so I feel like I'm being a miserable git but it is like Groundhog Day most weeks!
I've been exactly where you are now in near identical circumstances. I booked myself on to an evening course which we couldn't really afford (had to get a babysitter as DH doesn't get home til 9/10). It was madness when I look back at it - getting things organised to do it felt like a uphill battle and was stressful. But I met loads of nice people and felt I had something to talk about again. Contributed hugely to my confidence boost. Do look in to finding something that's just for you.
Read how to do everything and be happy. I did. I do more, and am happier.
I really would not worry about being boring and having nothing to say. You sound lovely, and I'm sure you have plenty to talk about with like minded people. My friends who are the best company haven't lived the most exciting lives but we find lots to talk about and they are funny, insightful and entertaining friends. In contrast, I've met people who have travelled extensively and appear to live fantastic lives but make dull company.
I could have written this post several times over. DC are 2 and 5, DH works long hours and away a lot. I completely get the treadmill feeling and also the guilt about not contributing financially (as ridiculous as it is).
I had a bit of an epiphany 18months ago after bursting into tears at the hygienist. That actually it's ok to do things/have time for yourself (go to the hygienist ahem) you just have to make a real effort to carve it out.
Shortly after that I got a Saturday job waitressing. It was only a short shift but I really relished doing something productive by myself and felt less guilty leaving DC with DH. After 6monthsish this gave me the confidence to apply for some freelance work connected to my field. Now I do that at weekends and occasionally in the week. Even though I am overqualified and earn 1/10th of what DP does it keeps my self confidence ticking over and gives me something to say when faced with the dreaded "what do you do?"....
Does your younger DC do any nursery sessions? Mine started "mornings" which is only 2.5hrs a day this year. I make a concerted effort to use this time to do something I could never do with him around NOT housework.
Having never been sporty I have joined a ladies running club and also taken up yoga. The running club lady had us running up hills in the rain last week and we were all laughing about how we would rather do that than face the washing up/hoovering/ironing pile etc etc again. Having initially scoffed at it I also find the mind clearing and breathing techniques from yoga really helpful. They have definitely helped me calm down.
I also try to do things like listen to podcasts when I am doing the housework and try to read more I use the kindle app on my phone a lot rather than just endlessly check MN, Facebook etc.
I hope this helps. Not trying to say you must run and read and yoga etc but just try to find something/anything that you enjoy.
Heartened by those who say it gets easier. My two year old is relentless at the moment.
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