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Do you get lonely at home as a SAHM?

(32 Posts)
girlygirl Mon 27-Jun-05 15:57:14

I do, although I've been doing it for years. I really miss the company of work. Does anyone else feel like this?

Nemo1977 Mon 27-Jun-05 16:00:48

i feel like this too..ive been home for 20mths and am expecting no.s in dec so have a few years ahead of me and it is very very isolating unless u can find someone else in similair position

nailpolish Mon 27-Jun-05 16:05:19

i was extremely lonely, and i worked for 2 days a week for a while!

we have moved 80 miles back home to be beside our family and friends again just to feel part of life. i used to sit in the house (which was in a very small village) feeling there was nothing to all day except go to the same crap swing park. it was worse in the winter. used to cry every day.

now i dont work and i see my family and friends most days (some dont work, some are off during the week, and lots have children too) and i dont work, poor dh travels 4 hrs a day on the train to his work but he says its worth every second (and penny) to see me happy not sobbing when he gets in every day (bless him)

do you have anything to do or anyone too see during the week, girlygirl? where abouts are you?

Fio2 Mon 27-Jun-05 16:08:05

yes i find it very isolating. has got worse since we moved tbh as i dont really know anyone, only a few friends and thats it. its hard isnt it?

Nemo1977 Mon 27-Jun-05 16:17:07

very hard fio and even harder to make friend via toddler groups i find

nailpolish Mon 27-Jun-05 16:18:20

omg toddler groups are the hell on earth. torture torture torture imo. why do we have these things? AARRGGHH

Nemo1977 Mon 27-Jun-05 16:20:14

pmsl NP

nailpolish Mon 27-Jun-05 16:20:40

does it get easier when they go to school i wonder

Fio2 Mon 27-Jun-05 16:22:28

I have one at school and no, it doesnt get easier!

nailpolish Mon 27-Jun-05 16:24:18

nope i didnt think so

girlygirl Mon 27-Jun-05 17:36:05

I've got one at school too and I've got lots of friends round here with kids, but none of my before children friends have got kids. The friends I've made round here are nice but I feel I'm on a treadmill, same places, same conversations etc etc. I need a job, but have noone to collect or help with kids and I couldn't afford to pay childcare.I'm stuck in a rut and feeling really bored and lonely today

nightowl Tue 28-Jun-05 01:34:11

i was very lonely after having my dd. i lost my job whilst on mat leave but during those months i was unemployed i actually got to know my neighbours and now the weather is nice we sit outside nearly every night and have a good gossip. i also got a job 16 hours a week which keeps me sane. my life is so much better than it was now. if you really want to go back to work then keep trying, some employers will be flexible with hours, i was cheeky with mine. I attended the interview then when i got the job i asked him if i could change the hours slightly (was part time anyway). he was great about it. no problems whatsoever.

Catsmother Wed 29-Jun-05 15:17:53

I'll put my hand up to feeling like this too. It's dreadful because apart from actually feeling lonely, you also start to lose confidence in yourself as well. I've not worked now for almost 2 years since going on maternity leave. Don't get me wrong, I love my daughter to bits but feel very trapped .... there are only so many places to go locally and though I may be shooting myself in the foot, I too, baulk at mum & toddler's groups (having received less than entusiastic welcomes when I did try them years ago with my first).

We moved 6 months ago - for affordability reasons, there really wasn't a choice and I don't know anyone here, though TBH, didn't really have much to do with my neighbours where I used to live either. However, back then, I was working f/t (before baby) and had friends, or at least friendly social interaction with the people I worked with. The ideal - for my own sanity, and for extra money - would have been for me to go back to work p/t, but the distance & childcare expenses involved would have meant a very small net return, one which just didn't seem worth all the stress. Unfortunately though, local jobs are much more badly paid and as I held quite a specialist position before, would probably have to set my sights a lot lower locally and end up just as poorly paid ..... it's terribly frustrating all ways round. My immediate neighbour here seems lovely, a very gentle woman, but would guess she is late 50s, she works, and I can't therefore realistically see us striking up an intense friendship. My other neighbour is a middle aged guy we've only spotted once or twice in 6 months. So ..... right now, any social interaction I have is limited to brief exchanges with people in shops !

While my daughter has her daily nap, I come on the net and look here (only found the site quite recently) for reassurance that I'm not "the only one" (in all manner of ways!) I also join in the message boards on a couple of other sites which interest me - a general knowledge question site and a music site, but even then, feel frustrated because I can't get as "chatty" or "talk" in as much depth as I'd like with other people simply because I don't have the time to properly interact once baby is up and about ! Very annoying 'cos I could talk about books, music and lots of other stuff for hours if given the chance.

Dunno what the answer is .... I keep coming back to the dreaded mum & toddler groups but feigning interest in other people's potty problems for very long just isn't my forte ...... then again, I get terribly guilty for maybe depriving my daughter of other children's company now she's getting bigger ....

Sometimes I think this is just something I'm going to have to grit my teeth over and put up with until daughter goes to school and I can then at least p/t for some noticeable return, and get to know people that way. Doesn't help that DP doesn't get back from work each day (due to long commute) until just before 8pm.

Dunno why I posted this really as re-reading my post it sounds a bit depressing with nothing constructive in it ..... just wanted to say I know how you feel I suppose.

motherinferior Wed 29-Jun-05 15:22:54

Catsmother, would it really not be worth the stress - I'm genuinely asking?

I would get lonely, I know.

kama Wed 29-Jun-05 15:27:46

Message withdrawn

aaliyahsmum Wed 29-Jun-05 15:32:55

i get very lonely it wasnt so bad when i lived by my family. my dd starts school in sept i have met some of the parents and i dont seem to fit in with any of them, i am going to get a puppy to keep me sane

starrynight Wed 29-Jun-05 15:51:53

I have been a SAHM on and off for the last 10 yrs and its had its moments! I have never made a friend or more than passing aquaintance at toddler groups or outside the school gates.

I moved to a new area 5 yrs ago where I didn't know anyone and started going to NCT coffee groups - I had to go a few times before I felt really comfortable but it was sooooo worth it. I have a huge support network now, see friends most days and am rarely bored or lonely (but it still happens.) When you are in someones home you tend to chat as it is more informal but at a toddler group - I agree hell on earth.

Not everyone likes them - but I think its worth a try. You have to persevere for a bit though or try a different group if you don't like the people.

Catsmother Wed 29-Jun-05 16:26:51

MI .... I said what I did about it (going back to work) not being "worth the stress" in all seriousness. Unfortunately, the moment has long passed and I doubt I'd get my old position back after all this time - maybe I'd get something, but that'd be lower paid. While I was ummmming and aaaaing about going back, found that my net pay after travel, childcare, wear and tear on car etc would be close to £200 pm. for f/t ! That would have entailed putting my daughter in childcare of some sort from 7.30am to 6.30pm, or possibly longer now we've moved further away. My old job is now 40 miles from where I live ... and with both of us out the house for so long, I think the everyday struggle of doing housework etc., and feeling like I'd spent any time at all with my daughter would have been very stressful indeed. Not to mention 3+ hours of driving, much of it stop-start traffic jam type driving to boot.

Prior to baby, I did that journey - albeit slightly shorter for 6 years. My son spent his entire life - so it seemed - in childcare, though he was older and could understand to an extent that I had no choice. Like many mums wondering if they should go back to work, I think the thing that swung it for me was the very very little return, which, one way or another me & DP figured we could make up elsewhere. Before I started looking into it I had thought that I might still be entitled to some rebate on childcare, but our combined incomes would have meant not. I know that sounds like prospectively we would have had a lot of money, but not when you're mortgaged up to the hilt, are spending £800 pm on travel between you, and have to pay maintenance to DPs ex. All in all, we couldn't see much practical benefit in me going back - wouldn't have been like we'd have got fancy cars or holidays as a result ! But - I was very aware at the time that this decision might potentially leave me feeling isolated .... but really felt in a Catch 22 situation. The benefit for me going back to work would have been the opportunity to use my brain, see my friends, feel like yes, I was intelligent really, but the downside was that I'd have been very very tired, the house would have been a tip, my baby would be with a stranger, my teenager would have been in and out of the house on his own for a lot longer than I'd have felt happy about and so on and so on. With such a dismal return, we were also conscious of the effect on my car and how we'd afford a new one if the need arose.

I think things would have been very different if a) we could have afforded to live close to where I worked (and closer to where DP worked) and b) we had a close relative willing and able to lend a hand with p/t childcare. Guess my dilemna is a modern one which must affect many others too. It's incredibly frustrating because there is absolutely nothing remotely equivalent to my old job in terms of fulfilment and/or wage close by, when it would have obviously been more feasible then. I feel washed up on the shore sometimes at the grand old age of 40 and with a 1st class degree - just useless ........ but logically, I do know deep down it's circumstantial.

To hear me "speak" you might think I was very career minded but I wasn't - I have always said I'll do anything if the money's right, I'm not snobby about it, but on the other hand I'm not going to work for a net pittance at the expense of my baby - there has to be some sort of balance. I know it has to be this way ... I know that practically, to go back to what I was doing is just never going to happen now .... but I do really regret the resultant lack of social life (even a "working" social life) that being a SAHM has meant for me personally. I was a single mum for 9 years till me & DP moved in together when we had our baby so never had much of a social life anyway but was respected and liked (I hope) at work. It's amazing how quickly people lose interest in you when you leave though ! I email some former colleagues but am increasingly feeling it's like getting blood out of a stone to get any sort of response back and have decided really to call that a day. Guess we have moved off in completely different directions now ......

Starrynight, I may well check out the NCT idea - I have absolutely no objection to meeting and chatting with other mums, hell no, if I did that'd make me a bit of a hypocrite , but, even with an eye on the kids milling about, I want to feel free to talk about anything and everything, and not just "child-related" stuff. I went to a couple of mum's groups years and years ago when my now teenage son was small but found it very cliquey - I know that saying that in itself is a bit of a cliche, but IME, found it to be true. Can remember standing in the middle of the room ('cos all the chairs were taken, some of them covered in other mum's bags ) with this stupid smile on my face and no one even had the grace to smile back, or move their stuff. You'd have thought that an organiser would have introduced newcomers to the rest but no ..... strange to say I never went back !

snafu Wed 29-Jun-05 16:29:17

Yes, hugely lonely, often boring, often frustrating and terribly isolating. Roll on September when the majority of my time will not be spent with obstreperous, yelping toddlers.

Can you tell I'm not having a good day?

motherinferior Wed 29-Jun-05 16:29:30

I completely see your point, CM, and I thought it would probably be the case. I would have made the same decision as you, I think.

I work based from home, which has its own drawbacks (you get very isolated) but many advantages (the children are not very far away).

motherinferior Wed 29-Jun-05 16:30:02

No, you'll be dealing with obstreperous yelping pregnant women, snaful

snafu Wed 29-Jun-05 16:31:29

Oh, bum. Forgot that bit, MI

charleepeters Wed 29-Jun-05 16:43:23

I get really lonley find it so hard to make friends and theres no mother and baby groups around.

starrynight Wed 29-Jun-05 17:08:58

Catsmother - its worth a shot and we talk about lots of stuff - but some is child-related. However we also have a book club, go to cinema/pub regularly, and having a walking club if thats your kind of thing. Shop around til you find some women you like. Good luck.

Catsmother Wed 29-Jun-05 17:31:12

Oh God - have just re-read my last post and I know it sounds really whingey. I appreciate that lots of women have to work (to pay the bills) and would love to stay at home. I do know I am lucky to be able to do this with my daughter, but guess am frustrated by the fact there seems to be no middle ground, for me at least, with my particular circumstances. Basically, I'm with her 24/7 and it would just be so much easier if I could sometimes interact with other people who are interested in me. Find it very hard when DP gets home and I struggle to find anything worthwhile to say about my day, other than a list of housework, baby duties and "cute" things she's done today. I sometimes think that "me" - i.e. an intelligent, interesting and attractive woman in her own right - has become completely invisible.

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