Page 9 | To not understand how children bring anyone joy?

(240 Posts)
Bluerainbow86 Sun 26-Sep-21 10:26:23

I know, I know, no other love like it. But that’s not especially positive is it? Because it just leads to worry and stress.
One of my children has additional needs, which likely doesn’t help, but how does anyone ever enjoy anything with their children?
The only way I can see it is possible is if you have one child, NT, hands on partner, plenty of cash.

No other situation seems to lend itself to anything particularly positive.

OP’s posts: |
TheVolturi Sun 26-Sep-21 18:20:40

Chicchicchicchiclana

*We all know as parents to any children that the joy thing is not true. They might bring you a tiny scrap of joy now and then, but the rest of its just bloody hard work!!*

I just don't think this is a given that all parents agree on? At times it has been hard work having children but 95% of the time I feel like it's been great, honestly.

I'm not saying people are wrong to find it joyless, just not everyone.


That is what Paddy mcGuiness said. I didn't say it. He was being truthful, it must be hard. I only have one with Autism but it's not a walk in the park.

JoborPlay Sun 26-Sep-21 18:22:01

I admit I never really understand these 'god i hate being a parent' posts but I can only assume you have some huge stressors involved.

Some people just don't enjoy parenting. Regardless of how lovely/ easy/ wanted etc their kids are. In a similar way to some people don't like certain foods - an ex of mine imagined he'd absolutely love sushi, he likes cold rice, loves fish, like Asian food and soy sauce. But when he tried it, he absolutely couldn't stand it. He couldn't put his finger on what exactly, but he knew he really didn't like it. Unfortunately unlike sushi, you're kind of stuck with you kids once they're here regardless of how much you like parenting, or don't.

RoseMartha Sun 26-Sep-21 18:22:15

Sending a hug 🤗

I understand. 🤗🤗 How tough it is.

One of my teens has asd and other problems and now been referred back to paediatric consultant for other mental health issues. She is physically violent and verbally abusive. I am not well off and divorced and have my dc 99.5% of the time as my kids cant cope being with abusive ex and he cant cope with them. I also have limited support network and no respite.

I just take one day at a time.

I dont think there is an easy answer

Are there any support groups in your area?

TheYearOfSmallThings Sun 26-Sep-21 18:24:54

What do you want payback for? Raising her? That was your choice.

I think it is reasonable to hope that all the love and effort you put into raising your child will reap the reward of a loving and friendly relationship when they grow up. Most of us hope for that if we are honest.

TheGrumpyGoat if your DD is still a young adult she may return to you once she matures a bit, and especially when she has DC of her own. I always secretly thought I could do better than my parents until I had DS and realised they were and are awesome parents.

Realowlette Sun 26-Sep-21 18:27:26

frogsbreath

My son has several disabilities. When he was 3 years old and we were realising the impact of these on himself and our family our health visitor asked me, "but do you enjoy him though"?

I realised no, I hadn't been finding any joy in being his mum.

I live every day with the mantra of finding joy in the small things now. I told him to put some clothes on and cover up last night and he put a cape over his butt and wiggled it at me. Hilarious, a small funny moment.

I sometimes feel jealous of families with neurotypical children who seem to find everything so easy. Their days aren't filled with looking for problems before they arise and settling down problems you couldnt avoid.

But I still find joys because I changed my attitude into letting the moments come to me.


I totally agree with this.

SafeMove Sun 26-Sep-21 18:32:43

I wasn't really thinking about payback when I had my DC. I was thinking about the adults they become and the individuals they are and try to parent from their point of view - I don't really see them as mine, a reflection of me or the parenting I do as transactional or what I get out of it. I didn't have them for myself. I chose to have them yes, but I have always thought they are my life's work and if its tough or joyful that is a bi product of what the purpose is. I want them to be contributing adults. I listened to my biological clock and was driven to have them because of, well nature.

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Phineyj Sun 26-Sep-21 18:42:46

It's obvious why people have more than one DC with additional needs without factoring the resulting work, isn't it? They don't know about the additional needs until after that decision is made. We got out diagnosis at age 7 (and that was private -- no doubt we'd still be waiting for the NHS). Not many people plan a 7 year age gap, do they?

And it can be hard to tell additional needs from general toddler behaviour, especially if it's your first.

Phineyj Sun 26-Sep-21 18:49:07

I've just read the rest of your posts and that sounds awful, truly awful.

My DD does behave like that to me but only when she is feeling really awful, jealous or overwhelmed. I got a lot of it in lockdown. She used to hit us and spit a lot too but that phase seems to over thank God.

She is also mostly fine in school and is never mean and horrible to anyone other than me and DH.

I highly recommend NVR (Non Violent Resistance) if you haven't tried it already. We found it really helpful.

flowers.

rhonddacynontaf Sun 26-Sep-21 19:30:54

Phineyj

It's obvious why people have more than one DC with additional needs without factoring the resulting work, isn't it? They don't know about the additional needs until after that decision is made. We got out diagnosis at age 7 (and that was private -- no doubt we'd still be waiting for the NHS). Not many people plan a 7 year age gap, do they?

And it can be hard to tell additional needs from general toddler behaviour, especially if it's your first.


My DS was diagnosed prior to me deciding to have another.

Cait73 Sun 26-Sep-21 19:37:11

Having one isn't the answer you either find joy or you don't

Rugsofhonour Sun 26-Sep-21 19:42:10

“The only way I can see it is possible is if you have one child, NT, hands on partner, plenty of cash.”

You’ve described my family dynamic and I enjoy my child a lot. It’s exactly why we’ve decided not to have a second child. Life would be much more difficult and expensive, especially if said child turned out to have additional needs. I know a LOT of people who chose to stop at one child. I live in London and it is extremely common.

Phineyj Mon 27-Sep-21 09:43:21

rhondda we wouldn't necessarily have been put off either (we were too old though) but it is very common for people to have DC two years apart and it is very common for SEN not to be diagnosed till primary or even secondary. I teach sixth form and it's not unknown for SEN in able DC to be diagnosed then, at the point their cognitive and social load becomes intolerable and the coping strategies that have served them up to that point start to fail.

There needs to be a lot more practical support and a lot less judgement.

LukeEvansWife Mon 27-Sep-21 09:54:57

I think people are just surprised that if people have an ND (diagnosed) child who is exhausting, then why would they then choose to have another child to add to the work and stress.

LukeEvansWife Mon 27-Sep-21 09:58:47

I should add that I don't judge in that situation because it is nothing to do with me!

megletthesecond Mon 27-Sep-21 16:34:02

Phin I'm starting a NVR course this week. It looks promising.

elliejjtiny Mon 27-Sep-21 16:45:55

Yanbu. I've got dc with additional needs and it can be relentless at times. There is some joy but a lot of the time it's mainly hard slog. "Phases" that last a few weeks with NT children last years with my dc and then there is the constant fighting with professionals to get the support they need and the constant fear that what you do have will get taken away. Not forgetting the friends and relatives who cheerfully tell me that I'm lucky my dc isn't "properly disabled" like their postman's, nephew's, hairdresser's child.

BlackeyedSusan Mon 27-Sep-21 16:51:49

Two disabled children, single parent, was short of money. yes they bring joy.

There is a lot of the usual parenting slog. (Washing, shopping, housework school runs etc) often more difficult and more of it. Sometimes parents have the same disability they have passed on.

Finding joy is sometimes an active choice and some days it is difficult.

As this is hanging round on the internet forever, I shall just say that you got off lightly with your kids comment. wink

Try to remember that they are speaking out of overwhelming emotions. They abuse you as you are their safe person. Try not to take it to heart.

BlackeyedSusan Mon 27-Sep-21 16:53:25

...and there is always bedtime even if it is 2am

BlackeyedSusan Mon 27-Sep-21 16:56:48

Oh and sympathy flowers because I forgot about the times when you get a long period of difficult days (did I mention 2am bedtimes which really effect ones memory)

But it does get better for some periods.

Buttercup54321 Wed 29-Sep-21 00:56:28

Have you considered boarding school for rude, unpleasant child who is with you all the time? I would.

Ledition Wed 29-Sep-21 01:33:23

Teeny tiny moments of joy interspersed between the vast swathes of tedium, noise and stress IME.

When they were toddlers I asked the same question as you over and over and literally couldn't understand how anyone enjoyed being a parent. Genuinely couldn't wrap my head around it and figured everyone must be a lying gobshite grin. Yes they're cute and say the occasional cute/funny phrase but how was that worth it?! The sacrifices seemed waaaay disproportionate to the "joy".

However I'm finding more and more joy as they get older and whilst I still find parenting immensely irritating, the shit/joy scales are starting to level out a bit. My youngest is 3.5 and she is being a pain! She was my easier child too, a doddle as a newborn and the most pleasant baby. Surprisingly her sister who was a very high needs baby, really intense and clingy has become quite a carefree and pleasant to be around 5yo - I never would have thought it! I think in another year and a half I might actually enjoy them a considerable amount of the time 🤞🏼

rhonddacynontaf Wed 29-Sep-21 10:30:03

Buttercup54321

Have you considered boarding school for rude, unpleasant child who is with you all the time? I would.


You're talking about a disabled child here.

Tangledtresses Wed 29-Sep-21 10:51:15

Yep teenagers can be utterly vile sometimes... but see yourself as a mirror He's just telling how awful he feels about himself ?

I went through very similar with my now 17 yr old

I stopped taking him on day trips.. left him at home! Can't be pleasant stay at home
Fighting picking on his brother... we left the house.
Etc etc

And when he eventually was pleasant he got lots of attention....

He needs a goal a hobby anything! What does he enjoy doing? What makes him smile? Ask him

ancientgran Fri 01-Oct-21 12:24:50

Ledition

Teeny tiny moments of joy interspersed between the vast swathes of tedium, noise and stress IME.

When they were toddlers I asked the same question as you over and over and literally couldn't understand how anyone enjoyed being a parent. Genuinely couldn't wrap my head around it and figured everyone must be a lying gobshite grin. Yes they're cute and say the occasional cute/funny phrase but how was that worth it?! The sacrifices seemed waaaay disproportionate to the "joy".

However I'm finding more and more joy as they get older and whilst I still find parenting immensely irritating, the shit/joy scales are starting to level out a bit. My youngest is 3.5 and she is being a pain! She was my easier child too, a doddle as a newborn and the most pleasant baby. Surprisingly her sister who was a very high needs baby, really intense and clingy has become quite a carefree and pleasant to be around 5yo - I never would have thought it! I think in another year and a half I might actually enjoy them a considerable amount of the time 🤞🏼

Your description of how your children changed made me smile. I was a HR manager and I can't tell you how many mums I've had come back to work and tell me how awful they feel as everyone else seems to have a perfect baby who sleeps, eats, smiles and is no trouble. I always told them to hang in there, it's a marathon not a sprint and in my experience lots of the angelic babies turn into little (or even big) monsters at some stage and lots of the hardwork ones become lovely. Don't know how true it is but I think it gave some of them a bit of hope.

ancientgran Fri 01-Oct-21 12:27:03

Cait73

Having one isn't the answer you either find joy or you don't

But one does tend to be easier. I couldn't stand the squabbling and they can't squabble if theres only one.

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