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Three five and under is hard work?

(51 Posts)
Sparklycurtainpole Wed 05-Oct-16 19:40:17

Just wondered if anyone else with three small children (or more) is just beyond exhausted?
Mine are 5,2 and 4 months old.
5 year old is a great sleeper. 2 year old has multiple night terrors (upwards of 6-8) EVERY night and 4 month old breastfeeds every 2 hours round the clock. Partner works away for a fortnight at a time then home for a few days inbetween.
Am absolutely exhausted. Health visitor is supporting with early weaning as baby is huge and constantly starving (no probs with feeding or milk supply; he's just constantly hungry!)
Getting all three up, dressed and out the door for the school and nursery runs (25 min walk there, school starts @ 8.45) is no mean feat and organising house and general 'life' is just non stop. I literally don't sit down all day and am only getting about a total of 3 hours broken sleep per night. I've started feeling faint and dizzy lots of the time and actually bumped the car last week I was so tired. No one injured, just a scratched wing. Anyone else struggling with little ones and finding it just ruddy hard work? When not on maternity leave I have a professional and very responsible job which is very high pressure. How come I can do that so easily but having three little ones is breaking me?
I'm not in any way depressed or complaining. I do get lots of offers of support from family so im not alone in this. I just want to know I'm not the only one feeling overwhelmed by tiddlers!

cestlavielife Wed 05-Oct-16 19:42:15

Of course it's exhausting. Get some regular help if ypur p is away for days at a time.
Get paid help.

MrsHathaway Wed 05-Oct-16 19:42:40

I had very similar ages. They're now 8,5,2.

I wish I could tell you it gets easier.


cestlavielife Wed 05-Oct-16 19:43:32

Either get family in to help few hpurs per day or pay. The next car bump could be v serious. Sleep deprivation accumulates

Elllicam Wed 05-Oct-16 19:43:37

Oh dear I'm watching with interest, I'm going to have a 4 year old, 2 year old and newborn come January.

MrsHathaway Wed 05-Oct-16 19:46:32

Sorry, I wasn't helpful.

It isn't suddenly going to get easier, so take any and all help offered, particularly anything that will get you sleep.

mintthins Wed 05-Oct-16 19:46:38

Mine are now 12, 14 and 16. It gets much much easier. I can't remember when though... 🍷helps... I think when the littlest gets into a bed time routine. DH was away a lot when mine were that age. It really did nearly break me. I think I tried to nap when the baby did in the afternoon before school run - set an alarm though! Also get a cleaner.

Ellieboolou27 Wed 05-Oct-16 19:47:48

I have 2 under 4 and I'm sinking blush
My cousin had 3 under 5 with only 13 months between the two youngest, it put me off having kids for a good ten years!

Selfimproved Wed 05-Oct-16 19:49:54

I have similar ages and my husband works away during the week, only home at the weekend. He's about to go away for a month shock
It's hard but it's wonderful. My house is a mess, a drink gets spilled every single meal time, and sometimes I can't believe we are all still alive.
I know exactly what you mean about the car. This morning I was so aware that I was too tired in the car, I really had to concentrate.
The mornings are the hardest part of my day. Getting them dressed and keeping them resalable clean til we get out the hosue is a joke.
A colleague with one teenage daughter was telling me how I was being ripped off letting my eldest eat in the canteen at school and it is terrible low quality food blah blah blah. When she suggested I prepare him a packed lunch every evening like her husband does I didn't know whether to laugh, cry or punch her.
I am firmly on the path of least resistance.

When it's going well it's brilliant though!

SmileAndNod Wed 05-Oct-16 19:51:38

I had three 5 and under. They are now 9, 6 and 3. I found it bloody hard then and I find it even harder now. Definitely get some help if you can. Go easy on yourself. flowers

Laiste Wed 05-Oct-16 19:52:57

Mine are 18, 20 and 22 now. (Oh and another wee one - 2.5).

My advice is routine, routine, routine.

XH was no help with eldest 3 when they were little. (partly hy he's an x) I got into a routine which suited all 4 of us and stuck to it come hell or high water. My outlaws were always hmm about my strict bed time routine - but i always thought fuck 'em, it's me doing the graft, it's me who'll decide what happens when.

Sparklycurtainpole Wed 05-Oct-16 19:57:14

Thank goodness I'm not alone! Was beginning to think I was just somehow making a bit of a fist of it and making it harder work than it need be. 😀

Marynary Wed 05-Oct-16 20:03:01

That is inevitably going to be very hard work. As others have said, it would be a good idea to get some help from family and if you can afford it I would employ a cleaner.

arethereanyleftatall Wed 05-Oct-16 20:07:13

Goodness that sounds tough. Your littlest should only get better and better at sleeping through, especially once starts solids. You must be exhausted.

TinklyLittleLaugh Wed 05-Oct-16 20:10:18

My older ones are 22, 20 and 17 now. From what I remember it was routines that got us through, I was lucky that they were good sleepers though.

Take all the help you can: DDs used to have a couple of hours a week being wheeled around by doting elderly relatives while I had a doze caught up. Free nursery hours are a godsend too; my nursery allowed me to roll them together into a couple of full days, which was nice.

Yes it gets better; having three primary aged schoolchildren is a joy. Three teenagers? Well perhaps best not to answer that one.

miniplaty Wed 05-Oct-16 20:11:53

I had three under 5 at one stage, a husband who worked long shifts, many weekends and no family nearby. It's tough, I feel your pain! But I survived and can actually say I enjoyed it
Although we couldn't really afford it at the time, we scrimped and saved and sent the 2 year old to nursery two mornings per week. The 5 year old was at school and when I put the baby to sleep it was wonderful, kept me sane. Could you do something like that?

Coffeethrowtrampbitch Wed 05-Oct-16 20:16:26

Mine are 9, 7 and 5 now.

I am aware that at one point I had a three and a half year old, a two year old, and a newborn, but I don't think I remember any specifics before youngest was 3 due to lingering sleep deprivation.

It does get better, I found after the youngest sleeps through the night is the start of recovery from crisis mode, it took me about two years though to become normal again instead of a sleep deprived drone.

If it helps, they ran round the garden with friends for an hour today after school, and all had a brilliant time together. And because I have had 3 under 5, I sat and read a book instead of doing any housework ;-)

wonderingagain21 Wed 05-Oct-16 20:22:18

I had 3 under 4. It was hideous. I was always exhausted, lurched from disaster to chaos and felt like I was alway failing at everything, despite my previously demanding professional job. Be kind to yourself. If you need to, lie on the sofa (or the floor if the baby prefers) and just throw masses of biscuits & juice cartons on the coffe table. Put on kids TVs and doze. The older kids will eat themselves happy & you'll get a rest. I had a friend who swore by disposable plates & cutlery when it all got too much. Keep going and don't aim too high!

CinnamonTwist Wed 05-Oct-16 20:26:30

I'm one of 5 children, and when my youngest siblings were born (multiple birth) my mum had 5 under 5. I still don't know how she did it, as my F was/is completely useless and never really helped out. It gets easier as they get older - we all entertained each other and put on made up plays for her etc when we were 5-10ish and helped each other with homework. It was a great childhood, but I don't know how she coped when we were small!

Dinosaursgoboo Wed 05-Oct-16 20:31:38

I have a 5 year old, 2 year old and 6 month old. It's unbelievably hard work with moments of sheer joy. My housework standards are low low low. I'm hopelessly disorganised. I keep thinking what have I done. Then I see them enjoying each other's company and am glad. Until someone stands on another person and tgen someone shouts. And repeat, repeat. No nusery for another 11 months here...

Ohtheterribletwos Wed 05-Oct-16 20:34:12

Wow OP, only 2 DC here, I have a 2yo and a 1yo and I thought I felt run ragged at times! I take my hat off to you. Firstly grab every bit of help you can, also grab every chance to just sit/lie down, look after yourself food/energy wise, conserve your energy for the essentials of looking after DC and yourself. Sorry if this sounds obvious. flowers

TinklyLittleLaugh Wed 05-Oct-16 20:40:21

In some ways I think I actually coped better when my DH was working away because I could completely work things to the kids' timetable, cook food just for them, have more room for them in my bed etc. Not that DP wasn't great when he was around.

YouTheCat Wed 05-Oct-16 20:47:34

My mam had 3 under 2. She had very lovely Greek neighbours who helped a lot. Must have been exhausting though.

BackforGood Wed 05-Oct-16 21:22:32

Of course it's exhausting.
I would certainly try to get some help - either family you could ask, or try to find the money in your budget, even if it's a 'mothers help' for 2 hours a couple of times a week.

Musicaltheatremum Wed 05-Oct-16 22:16:20

I was taught 3 under 5 was always a risk factor for depression. I had 2 under 5 (only 2 kids) and I used to admire those who had 3. You will revel in it when they are wonderful young adults. Well done though

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