AIBU to *really* hate mornings? (Sorry - post is both long & ranty)(59 Posts)
Have namechanged for this as worried about being outed. Long-time member, penis beaker, naice ham pom bears etc – promise I’m not a troll / Daily Fail journo.
For background, I’m a single parent to 3 kids – their dad isn’t really in the picture. I work full time and sometimes I feel like I’m herding cats. Looking at this logically, mornings should go something like this:
06:15 get up, sort self, get kids breakfast, straighten hair and leave at 7:15 so I can drop kids with our awesome and long suffering childminder for 7:30 so I can get to work for 8:15 ish so that (a) I get a parking space and (b) I can leave at 16:45 ish to get back to said awesome childminder on time as she finishes at 17:30.
The reality? It goes something like this:
06:15 Get showered and changed. Try and ignore DC3 banging on the door saying she needs to be let in because she’s lonely and she needs me.
06:25 Pick up DC3 & wake up DC2 and DC1 using best Mary Poppins voice. DC3 at this point has calmed down and is now sulking over perceived lack of cuddles (she gets loads). I give DC3 a kiss and we play the “love you more game” DC2 refuses to get out of bed initially, so I coax him out by telling him the day will be awesome because he’s my hero. DC2 will stomp down the stairs and go back to sleep on the sofa. DC1 will start to faff saying that she’s tired and she hates mornings. I tell her that she may hate mornings but she loves walking to school with her friends so she needs to get up. DC1 still faffing so I tell her she’s amazing and I’m proud of her but she needs to move.
06:35 All 3 kids sat at the breakfast table. All three will moan about the choice of cereal despite it being what they chose when we went to ASDA at the weekend. DC2 will then want crumpets. DC3 will demolish cereal, fruit, toast and a yoghurt and will still claim to be hungry. DC1 will pick at her cereal like it’s something out of a bush tucker trial from the jungle / I’m a sleb. All three will complain that their orange juice either doesn’t have enough bits in it or has too many or that they want apple juice instead.
06:50 I tell all 3 kids that they need to get dressed into the nice clean clothes that I got out the night before all ready for them. DC3 will get dressed but will say she can’t put on her socks. DC2 will sit in his batman pants til we’re due to leave the house. DC1 will spend the next 30 minutes faffing about and finding stuff to moan about. There will be at least one sock related emergency.
06:55 I start trying to straighten my hair and put on make-up so I don’t frighten the horses.
06:56 Blood curdling screams from the direction of the kids’ bedrooms so I abandon hair straightening and make up. Separate kids and try and figure out who was attempting to kill who.
07:00 Remind all 3 kids that they need to clean their teeth and brush their hair. DC3 will refuse point blank so I will have to do it for her. DC2 will moan about the taste of toothpaste. DC1 will claim that she can’t find her hair brush / bobbins / clips despite being laid out for her the night before. At this point I’m wishing I could give up pretending to be an adult and go back to bed.
07:05 Give kids 10 minute warning and ask them to put their shoes on. Take out lunch boxes from the fridge and hand them out. Both DC1 & DC2 will then both decide they hate everything in them and want school dinners instead. World War 3 ensues when I tell them to suck it up. I drop the Mary Poppins act and start using my Batman voice.
07:10 Give kids 5 minute warning and tell them to put their shoes and coats on. Try and locate my shoes that should be in the shoe box but usually end up in DC3’s toy box.
07:15 Tell kids to get in the car. None of them are ready, DC1 is faffing with her hair, DC2 is probably still in his pants and DC3 is refusing to put on her trainers saying she wants sparkly princess shoes instead. Reiterate the importance of Mummy getting to work so she have money for useful things like food, clothes, toys and paying the mortgage.
07:20 Tell kids to hurry up. Threaten to drop them off directly to school in current state i.e. shoe-less / batman pants / not enough make up.
07:25 Start losing will to live.
07:30 Finally get all 3 kids in the car.
07:40 Drop kids with childminder wishing her good fucking luck. All 3 kids complaining about “ mummy being stressy” Do usual handover stuff including who’s doing what that day, who has a doctor’s appointment, who has after school clubs and deal with ongoing saga of ex-H (he doesn't deserve to becalled ex-DH) being a gobshite.
07:45 Get back in car. Try to find inner calm.
07:55 Start driving to work. Attempt to find inner calm / enter zen like state a complete failure.
08:10 Stress levels at DEFCON 1 level so decide to give mindfulness app a go.
08:20 Give up on mindfulness. Decide fuckloads of coffee is the only way forward.
08:30 Screech into car park, nabbing the last available space and sprint into the office so I can leave at a reasonable time so I can do the whole shitstorm again at the end of the day only in reverse.
09:00 Catch sight of self in loo. Still not wearing any make up and have mad hair that’s only straightened on one side.
Seriously – does anyone else find it this hard or is it just me? Sorry for the epic post, just needed a rant.
Craic that sounds tiring to say the least. Some practical suggestions that may or may not help. Do a keratin treatment on your hair or permanent straightening to cut out the battles with the hair straighteners. Try to set the children's body clocks back a bit (earlier bedtimes?) so they don't struggle to wake up. This is easier to achieve in the winter than summer due to darker evenings. If you need to then reset the clock to trick then into thinking it's bedtime. Make then have school lunch? Sounds like you are doing an amazing job though with three and working too so make sure you treat yourself sometimes.
Your kids are tired that's why mornings are awful, getting young dc up at 6.25 is too early.
Why can't you wake dc up at 7.10 lift them into car in pjs and they eat/ dress at childminders.
That sounds horrendous.
How old are DCS?
Could you perhaps introduce a rewards system/element of competition?
A lot of kids I've looked after will turn from 45 minute faffers to 5 min speed dressers simply due to the introduction of a stopwatch/hourglass.
Collecting stickers on the charts (getting changed in five minutes, not complaining etc etc) earns rewards. They don't even need to cost anything; who gets to choose what movie to watch on Fri evening etc
That sounds bloody awful
Can you get up 15 mins earlier, or get the kids up 15 mins later so you can do your hair and make up first?
If it's any consolation, I only have 2 and am a SAHM, and I always end up screeching at them to get ready. You are a hero to me
Arf @ Batman voice
Mornings are a pain the the arse OP you have my sympathies. The only think I can suggest is trying to make more time by you getting up early and getting sorted then waking kids?
The only thing that leaps out at me is that you're getting the kids up way too early
I'd get them up last possible moment and take straight to childminders for her to feed and dress them. I'd discuss this with her and offer her more money to do this - of course I don't know if this is an option
You've written it in a humorous story type way though so it's hard to decipher if this is really an issue for you
I agree with AndNowItsSeven, you might need to change your routine or try to get them to bed earlier. They're getting to your childminder so early anyway, there has to be time for them to get dressed and have breakfast there. My mum was a childminder and used to do it for some of the kids.
Plus am jealous - you have to wake up your children!!!! My dd has NEVER slept past 6 am.
In a perfect word, you could leave them asleep whilst you do a morning yoga session, followed by a super healthy breakfast, then carry them asleep to the car. Deposit them at cm with belongings, and serenely drive to work
In the real world, self medicate with coffee and count down til they leave home.
No advice OP, but I love your writing style
I agree with possibly looking at getting the kids up later.
I find when I have over an hour to get DD ready, it's a nightmare. However on our breakfast club mornings there's so little time to muck around it tends to go better. I get up at 7 and have spend twenty five minutes showering, putting make up on etc. Then DD gets up at 7.25 and I get her dressed straight away, quick drink, teeth cleaned, hair brushed and face washed. If she's good at this she can have 5-10 minutes in front of the TV while I finish things off, and then we leave at 7.50
If the kids are being dropped at the CMs at 7.40 then there must be room for her to do breakfast, even if it costs you more? It could be worth it. Kids up about 7, then dressed and washed and into the car. Maybe with a few days of finding some sort of 'punishment' if they faff too much.
I might be strict but surely any child old enough to attend school is old enough to understand the basics of "we need to be out of the house at X time". Obviously most kids aren't going to naturally get it, but they can have the basics explained to them and rewards etc for getting ready quickly.
This sounds like my house. My only hope is that because it happens every morning at some point it will all click and the DC will know what is expected of them.
My only other suggestions are to get yourself up 15 mins earlier so you are ready when you wake the DC (I.e. So you can supervise putting shoes on as they wont do that without constant nagging) and timers (I.e. 15 mins to eat breakfast then it goes away).
OP I am might impressed at your mornings! It may be a nightmare but each morning you are managing to get three fed, clothed and washed kids out the house and only have to go as far as Batman voice. I have two kids and when they were young I ended up shrieking at them every morning. Sounds like you're doing a great job to me although I appreciate mornings are super stressful!
Soon as they wake up, they need to get dressed, brush teeth, brush hair, and get school stuff together before they have brekkie. This works for my 3dcs, I'm single mum too so I know it's fucking hard. But you need to not be so chatty either in the mornings, no constantly telling kids how proud u are/they're you're hero etc... It's wasted words, just tell them to get up n dressed "NOW"
I'd get them up last possible moment and take straight to childminders for her to feed and dress them. I'd discuss this with her and offer her more money to do this
^^ What I thought too.
Then you can leave, serenely.
I hear you OP. Our mornings are similar except we walk to school so it ends with me jogging and dragging my three younger DCs while DD walks as far in front of us as possible because we are SO embarrassing.
You are only allowing 1 hour to get yourself and 3DCs up, dressed, breakfasted and out of the house - which includes you being 'work ready' not just 'school run ready' (ie doing your hair nice).
You are allowing no where near enough time - as you can see!
Get yourself up at 6am, if you can switch your shower and hairwash to the night before, even better, then you just need to do a fast 'tidy up' of hair before you leave the house.
I allow 1hour 45minutes to get me and 2DCs up, breakfasted, dressed and out to school, and even then that can be a rush sometimes.
1 hour is going to be hell.
oh and agree, if you are dropping at the childminders before 8am, I would assume they would do breakfast, can you ask her if she'll do breakfast?
I would definitely get up a little earlier, get myself ready first then focus on kids.
You're doing an amazing job though
I only have one and I have to get up at 6 to be out the door by 8! AND I don't wear makeup or straighten my hair. You're some kind of superwoman!!
Sounds just like my house and it is true that the more time you give them, the more time they need. I don't go near mine until I'm completely ready - if they wake up before I'm ready (dressed to shoes, coat, makeup and hair), I shove them in front of TV with Weetabix and grapes then once I'm completely ready and bags in car do I help them get changed, wash face, do teeth and hair ( all done downstairs in cloakroom toilet so no running up and down stairs.)Then shoes, coat and out. The actual getting ready part takes 10 mins max - they are 6 and 4 - and sometimes are so stunned by the sheer speed of it all, they just comply! We are out the door at 7.15am.
Good luck for tomorrow and if all else fails, treat yourself to a muffin with your coffee!
Thanks all – for the advice and all the helpful suggestions - I was terrified of getting flamed. I love them so much but holy Christ it’s hard sometimes. I wouldn’t change having them for the world but it’s so relentless. That’s why I try and see the funny side, if I didn’t laugh or try to I’d cry!
Kids are 11, 6 and 4. The 11 year old is starting the whole tweenage angst thing, the 6 year old is going down the CAHMS route. They’ve made an initial diagnosis of complex needs but still investigating if those needs sit on the autistic spectrum, the behavioural spectrum or something else. We’re still at the initial stage where he does play therapy once a week and they observe him and figure out a plan over time. The 4 year old is stuck between the older two – just trying to get attention any way she can. She’s normally awake from five o’clock every morning so the challenge is to keep her contained until it’s time for everyone else to get up. I’ve tried black out blinds, gro clocks, night lights nothing seems to work. I thought when she started pre-school that might tire her out but clearly not! Maybe she’ll need more sleep when she starts primary school next year.
Keratin treatment sounds like a plan – would that not wreck my hair though? Or turn it orange – I’ve loads of highlights – god only knows what my natural colour is underneath it all – suspect grey.
Brilliant idea about the timer / hourglass and stickers. I will pop out on my lunchbreak and pick up some stickers and paper so I can make a chart to stick on the fridge.
You could be right about them being tired, I’ll have a chat with the childminder tonight to see if dropping them off in their PJs and having breakfast at hers is an option.
The 10 minutes of tv as a reward if they’re ready on time is a great idea – will try that in the morning – first child ready gets to choose?
My God, that sounds totally exhausting. Hats off to you. I was in awe even at the time you get up in the morning! Disclaimer: I only have one child and am a homeworker.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.