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Stuck in house alone every day with 5mo baby. Help.

(80 Posts)
Miffster Fri 20-May-11 18:34:10

It's a bit of a nightmare to be honest. Came here so DH could work fewer hours and see baba, ( our 1st) but so far the hours are almost as bad - he's been working evenings, weekends and public holidays.

I have no friends here yet (arrived late March) and slim chance of making any as stuck here indoors - although have met a couple of women with babies at the communal pool, but they all have older kids too and are very busy. I only have 20-30 mins each day to try and 'socialise' at the pool though, since the pool is in full sun until 4.30pm, and later than 5.30pm DS gets vexed and needs to have bath/bedtime. I think I come across as exhausted and terribly anxious and stressed when I talk to new people as well. Because, well, I am. I am so tired I can't even think of small talk any more. I can't even think straight.

I have no car (yet). It is too hot/humid/sunny to take DS for walks after 8am and before 5.30pm. It is only going to get hotter.
I have a pram with a sunshield thing but it is so hot and stuffy underneath and he just cries if I take him out in it, plus I run with sweat after 5 mins and there are few if any pavements here.

All the advice on 'what to do with a 3/4/5/6 mo baby all day seems to be: get out, go for walks, attend M&B groups, go to cafes, etc etc. None of which I can do here, at least, not yet. I feel so trapped.

He is a bad sleeper and at the moment it's especially bad, 3 nights ago he got trapped in his hammock so since then has been cosleeping with me on mattress on floor. He is BF and kicks/bats/clambers on me all night for food. I have had almost no sleep this week which added to my sense of boredom and isolation and misery is making me feel dreadful.

He is a lovely little baby but I am so tired and it is just me and him, on our own, for 12-14 hours a day, not including the 20-30 mins in the pool, where sometimes I see other people, often not.

I can feel myself becoming more and more anxious and sad, and the thought of trying to make friends and keep going and putting on a happy face is very challenging. DH is stressed with the workload and can't really cope very well with me being so exhausted and tearful when he gets home.

I miss my life in the UK, the first 3 months with baby were very hard as he had reflux, but I had managed to make a small group of mum friends and there were parks, the cinema baby & parent film showings, streets to walk in, coffee shops, baby my friends and family.

I think this place where we are is great for small children who can swim and run about in the fresh air and play but crap for small babies, who can't go out in the sun.

I just needed to rant. And I could do with some ideas.
I can't lie down and have a sleep while he sleeps either; until DH manages to get away from work to buy a cot DS is back in the hammock for naps, swaddled and requiring constant vigilance in case he rolls again.

Has anyone else been there done that and got some advice?

Barmcake Fri 20-May-11 18:41:50

Where are you Miffster??

Portofino Fri 20-May-11 18:48:10

Babies can go out in the sun! You just need to be sensible. How old is DS now?

Miffster Fri 20-May-11 18:50:12

A bloody Caribbean island, at which point everyone goes 'but how marvellous!' As if my life is one long round of rum cocktails, scuba diving and lobster dinners on the beach.

My life is: me, bouncing off the walls n a small condo with a staggering aircon bill, and a bored small baby, for 14 hours every bloody day, then DH comes home, I cook fish and rice and go to bed at 9pm, before being woken at 11pm, 1am, 3am, 4.15am and up at 5am.

Ironically, the baby is trained to go to sleep to the sound of lapping waves on a CD, ha ha, as we live oin this island and have yet to go to the damn beach.

mumblechum1 Fri 20-May-11 18:50:29

Can't you order a cot online? Why does your dh have to buy it?

I realise that's not your main problem, though. Does your dh's HR dept have any sort of support help for families?

Miffster Fri 20-May-11 18:53:11

Babes cannot go out in this sun, it is roasting and have been told: no sunscreen til 6mo. He screams if walked about in the pram, under a blackout shade - is wringing with sweat after 5 mins, the humidity is high and getting higher as well as the sun Honestly, I would LOVE to leave the house and go for a walk but how???

Portofino Fri 20-May-11 18:54:41

I don't understand why you need to stay indoors all day? Yes you need sunscreen and / or hat / parasol etc but you should certainly be able to go to the pool/beach/for a walk. Are there any expat organisations?

mumblechum1 Fri 20-May-11 18:55:00

How do the Islanders manage with their babies? Are there any indoor places to go at all?

Miffster Fri 20-May-11 18:56:04

No, there is no internet shopping here, sio I cannot order a cot online, it would take 3-4 weeks to ship from the US and DS needs a cot now, he has nowhere safe to sleep!.

I cannot buy it because I have no bank account here, and no car.

DH's work talked a good game about work life balance before we arrived. Heh <sarcacastic bitter laugh>

Portofino Fri 20-May-11 18:56:23

UV suit and a hat, and go to the pool?

Portofino Fri 20-May-11 18:57:21

Do they not sell cots anywhere? What do the locals do?

dittany Fri 20-May-11 18:58:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

allhailtheaubergine Fri 20-May-11 18:59:00

My sympathies. It sounds awful.

It will get better though.

1. Are there taxis? Can you get a taxi to do things? If not can your husband organise a work car and a driver?

2. Is there an expat women organisation? There usually is if there is an expat community.

3. If, as above, there is an expat commiunity - all these busy women you briefly see have been where you are now. You probably need to TELL THEM you are struggling.

4. Have you got any neighbours?

5. Your littlie will get much easier quite quickly from here on. I moved to the Middle East with a 5 month old and he was very quickly enjoying the pools and the beaches.

6. Have you got a sun tent? Very useful.

7. Is it hot and humid season? Can you look forward to a cooler season?

dittany Fri 20-May-11 18:59:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Francagoestohollywood Fri 20-May-11 19:00:05

Oh you poor thing, I do sympathise, as I certainly know how lonely it is to live abroad with a small baby and how tiring it is to have so little sleep.

You really need to meet other people, and to be honest, I really don't know what to suggest as I have no clue what is the social life on a caribbean island like.

Is there no small town at all where you live? (gosh I would go crazy!).

Anyway, I come from Italy so I am used to hot weather: you can take babies to the beach. Slap him in suncream, pop him under an umbrella, stay until 10.30, or go after 5.30. Perhaps yuo should try to delay his routine iyswim... later bedtime so you can stay outside for a longer time once it is less hot.

Miffster Fri 20-May-11 19:00:38

I have been told babies cannot wear suncream here and should not go out in the summer sun here til 6mo. I have been told that by everyone here including the paediatrician.

It is also hideously humid. It is basically a hostile enviroment for small babies and I say that as someone who was walking her 3 day old baby in the snow in the UK and took him out every day, rain or shine. I am indoors all day because it is too hot and humid to go for walks and I have no car.

There is a playgroup, yes, but I would need a car to get to it, it is 3 miles away. I cannot take a 5mo baby to the beach! He isn't going to just lie there in the shade, ( what shade) he cries because it is so hot. I do go to the pool, from 4.30pm, but nobody uses the pooe day, it is too hot and sunny. UI would get horrified looks taking the baby out ion a pram in the sun anyway, nobody does it, it is just not safe. They all drive everywhere.

Portofino Fri 20-May-11 19:01:21

Sorry - I sounded a bit abrupt. You sound very, very down. I realise the sleepness won't help, but do you have a GP you can talk to?

Francagoestohollywood Fri 20-May-11 19:01:53

Of course babes can go out in the sun/hot weather (with precautions) otherwise us Mediterraneans would be extinct by now!

Cies Fri 20-May-11 19:03:01

You sound really stressed and bored and isolated. Sorry sad. Life with a small baby can be tough anyway, and being cut off from your support network makes it even harder.

Is there any way you could be brave enough to give your phone number to one of those people you see at the pool and say please, I'm really lonely, I haven't met anyone yet, would you like to come for a coffee tomorrow?

The truth is they have probably been in the same boat, but have just forgotten about it.

Also, some things you can do with your ds at home, that you may or may not have tried already are:
dancing to different styles of music, really go for it, headbang, waltz, jive etc. This always cracks my ds up, and helps me burn some calories too.
playing in the bath/ with water
surfing youtube to find pictures of babies - this always made my ds excited

Re the cot, it doesn't sound ideal. Could you not put ds down to sleep on the matress on the floor, instead of the dodgy hammock?

allhailtheaubergine Fri 20-May-11 19:04:25

Is the pool cooled? I have never heard of no sunscreen before 6 months. Every baby I know is slathered in it from the minute they are too old to be either sleeping the shade or on the boob.

Full length sun suit, hat and an hour in the pool? Even take a beach umbrella and prop it so you can splish in a shadey spot?

Honestly, I do sympathise. It gets to over 50 degrees where I am now and horribly humid too.

How hot is it where you are now?

Othersideofthechannel Fri 20-May-11 19:04:55

It's tough being stuck at home with a little baby and no friends. I'm not surprised you need a rant. Thank goodness for mumsnet for some chat to keep you sane!

Practically speaking, unless your baby is spectacularly mobile for his age, he could sleep in anything with sides eg a drawer or similar (on the floor) until you get a cot fixed. At least you'll be able to catch up on sleep then.

dittany Fri 20-May-11 19:05:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

allhailtheaubergine Fri 20-May-11 19:06:19

Can you contact the organiser of the playgroup and ask if anyone coming from your direction can give you a lift?

Cies Fri 20-May-11 19:06:21

Good idea of using taxis to get around if you don't have a car yet.

Miffster Fri 20-May-11 19:07:26

They do sell cots, yes, and DH needs to get away from work, where he is under huge pressure, and find an hour to drive to the shop to buy one, then get home before 8pm and set it up. That will happen.

I have a suntent, it is like a small oven unfortunately, as is the sun shield for the pram.

I do need to meet other people. I try, there is only the pool, I do go there every day but how can I tell the women there how much I am struggling with just one baby when they all have 3 children including a baby? I am scared that if anyone asks i will just break down in sobs like a basket case and who wants to befiriend someone who looks like she has PND? I don't think I have PND, I am just on my own all bloody day with a baby and trapped. I think it would send anyone slightly mad, with the sleep deprivation as well.

I am sorry to be so negative on here.
I don't see how I could take DS to the beach at the moment: he would hate it. But all of this will be easier in 18 months or so.

I just think, OMG, 18 months.

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