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Why isn't he smiling at me?

(27 Posts)
JazzieJeff Mon 29-Nov-10 10:48:57

My DS is almost 7 weeks. He has shown no signs of a smile yet. I'm not entirely surprised, because I may be the worlds worst parent, so smiling at me probably isn't top of his to do list.

But God I'm finding this so bloody hard and all I need is for him to show me I'm doing it right for him. All I need is for him to recognise me in some way, because I am really REALLY struggling now.

Goingspare Mon 29-Nov-10 10:54:06

Any time now.

A friend of ours, whose first child was a few weeks older than ours, said when his DD smiled for the first time, that it was 'not a moment too soon'.

Go easy on yourelf. Babies are really hard.

BuckBuckMcFate Mon 29-Nov-10 11:00:20

Ah JazzieJeff, are you ok? The last part of your post sounds like there is more going on than just wanting him to smile?

FWIW, DD grinned all the time and would smile at passing strangers. DS2 always looked seriously unimpressed about everything and all singing all dancing entertainment would only raise the tiniest smile and I remember thinking he didn't like me.

JazzieJeff Mon 29-Nov-10 11:14:32

buck just finding it hard. And feeling guilty, because DS is the easiest baby ever; he sleeps through already and lays under his playgym for an hour kicking and cooing. He's such a little dear but I can't really connect with him and I don't know why.

I'm constantly leaning on mn for help and I feel like such a whinger when people have is harder than me!

lollipopshoes Mon 29-Nov-10 11:17:15

If you don't feel that you're properly connecting, it is possible that you have a touch of PND. Have you got a decent HV you can chat to?

(and agree with the others who said that he'll smile when he's good and ready - any time now)

JazzieJeff Mon 29-Nov-10 11:31:07

Lollipop I feel rational about it all though. I'm ok about not connecting with him. I do love him, but it feels a bit buried somehow.

I feel a bit odd, but not sad. Not anything really.

I look after him and meet all his needs, I just want him to be happy with me that's all. I hope I'm doing it right.

BuckBuckMcFate Mon 29-Nov-10 11:34:52

I agree with lollipopshoes, speak to your HV. I had PND and remember feeling guilty because, in my mind, I didn't have enough to be depressed about, great family, lovely DC, really supportive DP, no money worries and I still wanted to leave my life as I was convinced they'd all be better off without me. Please speak to your HV or GP. I didn't tell anyone for months and it was posting on here that made me realise that it was ok to feel like that and that I could get help.

Keep on posting here. Don't beat yourself up, your DS sounds lovely and happy so you are obviously doing something right smile

Is he your first? Have you got family near you? Supportive DH/DP?

eviscerateyourmemory Mon 29-Nov-10 11:41:02

He sounds like he is happy smile

Smiling is a developmental thing, him not doing it yet doesnt mean that he doesnt approve of your parenting. It will happen soon.

JazzieJeff Mon 29-Nov-10 11:55:00

buck yes he is my first, my family live a few hours away though so they do what they can but that is limited. It is pretty much just me and DH on our own tbh.

I'm desparate to feel that rush of love for him because he is a good baby and everything about him is lovely.

I know I'm not a good mum, because that part of me is broken. That part of my brain doesn't work and I don't know why. I don't feel like a real mum should, and I'm desparate to mend it because I'm sure he won't smile at me until I do.

eviscerateyourmemory Mon 29-Nov-10 11:57:23

Do you have anyone that you can talk to about this?

You have said that you are meeting all his needs? That makes you a good mum IMO.

mylifewithstrangers Mon 29-Nov-10 12:00:29

Oh bless you, you ARE a good Mum, your happy and content little son is testament to that. Not everyone gets that big overwhelming rush of love for their kids that some books talk about. I certainly didn't. It's more of a slow burn thing, and it can take a good long while (over a year for me) to feel fully bonded.

I'd have a chat with your HV - have they done the questionnaire for PND? It is hard being a Mum, especially when you feel lonely and isolated. Do you have any local groups or friends to chat to? The NCT might be a good place to meet other Mums in the same position, or your local SureStart centre.

Hang in there, it will get better. And a smile is just around the corner smile

SkyBluePearl Mon 29-Nov-10 12:12:18

you are doing so well and yes it is so hard. nothing can prepare any woman for how hard those first months are. the connecting thing
can take a little while tho sometimes - it wll be like a little seed that grows and thrives. Im must admit that I much prefer older babies and toddlers to new borns. thats just me though.

HeroWantage Mon 29-Nov-10 12:15:34

Ignore the milestone books. DD didn't smile until about 10 weeks. She was a bit of a nightmare baby, and as a result, someone pointed out that she probably hadn't seen me smile very much, either...

She is now a very happy,normal child, so don't worry.

lollipopshoes Mon 29-Nov-10 12:15:37

Jazzie - you are sounding more and more as if you are PNDed.

Please speak to your HV, or if you can't for whatever reason, pop down to your local children's centre and have a chat with one of the nursery nurses (you could also ring them and they'll come to you if you would prefer)

You need to get some help with this - the sooner you get some help, the sooner you'll feel that rush of love that you crave.

Please, please, get some help with this.

cheeseytoastie Mon 29-Nov-10 12:15:58

Ah, poor you, my DS2 also took ages to smile, think it was cos he was early. It's so hard on your own without any kind of interaction from them. I suspect you haven't had your 6 week (or so) check-up yet, please mention how you are feeling when you get it. Also, only good mums worry about every little thing, if you were a bad one you'd not really be caring about this!

I think DS1 was about 9 months before I really settled into loving him etc., was about then he got more active and also not tied to feeding at certain times so I could get out and about properly. So, hang in there!

BuckBuckMcFate Mon 29-Nov-10 12:35:53

Jazzie, you ARE a good mum. You are taking care of all of his needs. Needs that he has no way of expressing to you, other than crying. You are translating those cries, grumbles, grizzles and making him happy. (Happy babies don't coo!) IMO that is the Mummy part of the brain.

Please go to the Drs/HV. Did you have midwife led care? Do you have a birthing centre near? I have contacted mine about health issues with DS3 (2 weeks) and I didn't give birth there but they still helped. There is support out there.

I have found that it helps to spend time with other people who think your DC are fab. So if you could arrange a visit from your parents or ILs and watch and listen to them telling your DS how amazing he is, it helps you to see it/feel it yourself.

Not all mums have an overwhelming rush of love for their DC. I think if you think of what your reaction would be if a dog/tiger/wild animal was trying to attack your DS you would see that you would do everything you could to defend him. That is a primal sort of love. But the loving him as an individual will come gradually as his personality develops which ties in with your desire for him to smile at you.

I've got to go feed DS3 now, and deal with stinky nappy too by all the fuss he is making smile

Keep posting x Have you talked to your DH about how you are feeling?

lu9months Mon 29-Nov-10 17:37:08

my DD didnt smile til 7 weeks, and then smiled at walls, the bed, strangers, anyone except me. I was gutted. now she is a lovely, happy , smiley baby and those days seem a long way off. when they start to develop their personalities and become smiley and funny, they are much easier to bond with. it will happen.

BuckBuckMcFate Tue 30-Nov-10 06:58:24

How are you doing today jazzie?

MovingGal Tue 30-Nov-10 07:34:55

It breaks my heart to hear you say that the mothering part of you is broken!

Don't forget that many of us have been in your shoes.

I didn't think I had any PND at the time but the Community Health Nurse (I'm in Aus) had me take a test. It was just a series of questions - I think it was called "Edinburgh" or something and she commented that she didn't think I would rate so high. I thought it was rubbish at the time but looking back I def. wasn't myself.

I had a strange experience when Ds was about six months old - I woke up one morning and sort of felt like "I'm back" and then my next thought was "yay! I get to play with Ds today"

Looking back I think I did have PND. After that things got so much easier.It sounds like you are going through something similar.

I always think back to that time as one of the best of my life but also the absolute hardest! It is only natural that you would take a while to find your feet - don't be so hard on yourself!

You sound like you are doing great and I'd bet that the rush of love your'e after will hit you when you least expect it.

mistressploppy Tue 30-Nov-10 09:50:33

Oh oh oh oh I felt JUST like you and I still do a tiny bit, but it's sooo much better (DS is 13mo), I really want to tell you that you'll be ok. I totally understand everything you've said - about your baby being really good but you still find it so hard, not wanting to moan etc. My family are miles away in Scotland too.

DS didn't smile until 8-9wks and then it was fairly rare still. I didn't get a sudden rush of love at all, it crept up on me, now I get mini-ones grin all the time. He is such an easy-going smiley child now, everyone comments on his good nature.

I didn't think I had PND because I was so aware of everything, but I think now that I did, and still do, in a very very small way. I felt guilty for feeling so bad for now reason.

Is there another newish mum you can talk to? I really leaned on another girl in our NCT group as she was feeling the same way as me

Ilovedaintynuts Tue 30-Nov-10 10:54:30

Oh my love.

I felt EXACTLY the same way as you. I thought I didn't have PND because I didn't exactly feel sad - I just felt NOTHING
My DS didn't smile until 8 weeks and I was convinced it was me he didn't want to smile at. I didn't 'love' him until he was about 4 months old but I went through the motions of caring for him. He is now a very lovely, 6ft, strapping (sometimes stroppy) teenager

I had PND that got worse and worse until I did start to feel sad but all the signs were there. Please speak to your doctor, it is so common and you can feel so much better with the right treatment.

I've since had two more DC's who both smiled around the 2 week mark and it somehow does make those early weeks easier when you are getting something back.

Good luck and hang in there

Ilovedaintynuts Tue 30-Nov-10 10:55:56

Also keep talking - you are NOT alone

JazzieJeff Tue 30-Nov-10 11:49:38

Hi girls, thanks for all the replies.

On the offchance last night, DH googled my new pill I started on about ten days ago, it's a new one I've never tried before called cerazette which is a mini pill. All this stuff came up (including a link to an MN thread) which said loads of people have suffered with depression as a side effect. DH said he thinks I was fine until a few days after I started taking it. It's a possibility I guess, so I have stopped it and weirdly I do feel a little better today although it could be a coincidence; I'm not sure how much difference one little pill can make tbh! I'm giving it 2 weeks; if I'm no better, I'm giving in and going to the doctors.

DS smiled at DH this morning. He won't do it for me. He just looks away and into the middle distance. I'm trying ever so hard, I really am!

mollycuddles Tue 30-Nov-10 12:02:51

Hi - I remember feeling such a bad mum first time round. It's so overwhelming. I had no reason to be depressed either but PND doesn't make sense. Ds didn't smile at me much but I think that babies still see their mum as so much part of them at such a young age. After all only a very few weeks ago you were the same person. So I guess it makes sense to smile at others but not smile at mum because that's like smiling at yourself iyswim.

JazzieJeff Tue 30-Nov-10 12:04:28

molly that is a comforting thought. Thankyou x

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