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overwhelmed, lonely and tired

(26 Posts)
chocoreturns Sat 28-Sep-13 19:05:46

The title sums it up really. I have a house that is desperately in need of attention, everything from taking the bins out to shampooing the carpets is now obviously in need of doing. (And when I mean obviously, I really mean it - not that my bins are overflowing, but my laundry pile is, my paperwork is, and my baked bean orange cream carpet is disgusting. Why oh why do rentals all have fecking cream carpets?

I went to see a friend today and she asked me what would help. The only thing I could think of was not being alone would help. Which made me cry. I just feel so bloody exhausted, mentally and emotionally. I don't want to have to be the only one who does everything, from all the night wakings to sorting out the baby handmedowns and clearing out all the 0-12 month gear I'll probably never get to use again.

Can anyone help me get a grip and start sorting this chaos out? How do you all do it? Seriously, when and how do you get your laundry done, your kitchens cleaned and your bathrooms sparkly in between everything else? My DC are 1 and 3 by the way, and I work from home (self-employed) 3 days and 3 evenings a week. They see their dad e.o.w 9am Sat to 5pm Sun. I'm often feeling so low on those weekends I just sleep through them sad I'm getting to the point where I just don't know where to begin to clear the backlogue. I do the necessary and then just can't get past that point - we're not sitting around in filth I promise - I just feel like I'm at groundhog day! And I'm sad, and tired of it all.

Tips and encouragement please x

iwantanafternoonnap Sat 28-Sep-13 19:23:37

My house is only superficially clean and my laundry gets done but never ironed. I might make the recycling every 6 weeks so it is huge and makes me look like an alcoholic when it does go out. My rubbish just gets taken out when I go to work. I drink too much vino on a weekend. If my DS saw there dad EOW i'd sleep through it all too if I had 2 very young children. He doesn't see his dad though so I end up being a shite parent who is knackered all the time and put the tele on on a sunday morning so I can go back to bed for an hour!

You are not alone, find other single parents and join a group and you'll soon see that. Ask your friend to come round and entertain your kids while you clean. Chatty and clearing up is much nicer especially when drinking wine. Ask your friends to come over and stay with you.

I cook my friends sunday lunch so that Sunday isn't lonely. My life has significantly improved the older my DS has got as we can do more. Just hang in there and keep thinking soon they will be in preschool and you will get a break. Huge hugs.


chocoreturns Sat 28-Sep-13 19:50:58

thank you so much for your reply. My littlest isn't settling tonight and they share a room, so my DC1 is up as well, wanting more stories and milk and to have another fireman sam DVD, this is why I also get nothing done - the little time I might have energy in the evenings is taken up with pinging up and down the stairs dealing with lost dummies, legs stuck in cot bars, blankets that have slipped off etc. My eldest comes in with me almost every night some time between 1am and 5am. I always take him back to bed, he comes in regardless. So no sleeps through the night for me! I'm sure this is normal for two so young, but it's a killer anyway.

I'm so glad I'm not the only one who just feels like it's head down, keep walking, wait for a slightly easier day that should be just around the corner... I have a few other single mummy friends but by and large I am the only one with more than one child (I only know one other single mummy with two and hers are a fair bit older). What this means is that I'm confident to watch their extra single child with mine, but no-one is really confident to go from a single 3yo to having three kids for a few hours, one of which is still a baby. So it's been a tad one sided with the favours. They would all want to help, but just through circumstance it's not always easy to be able to offer.

I'm glad the DC see their dad, but he's also the cause of most of my underlying stress, anxiety etc. Again, not exactly uncommon on this board! Sometimes I wonder if I'm depressed as it can all feel so hopeless, but then I think just pull yourself together and do it... it's not the worst thing in the world. Sometimes it just feels like it! Sunday lunch at my parents tomorrow though so at least we'll have some company and a morning off cooking for the day smile If I can just pull my finger out and clean up between now and then I may even get to relax tomorrow night... xxx

iwantanafternoonnap Sat 28-Sep-13 20:21:13

I found citalopram helped me lots! grin

Your ex is a wanker by the way I would gladly run him down!

Why do you put your eldest back to bed? I used to be one of those people that would never have a child to sleep in my bed until ex left and then changed my mind once he left. My DS used to get in my bed every night and I just let him, now its first thing in the morning most days and the nights he comes into my bed he will come in or a cuddle and then go back into his own. Some things just aren't worth losing sleep over. Ge sleep anyway you can and if that means kids in the bed so be it.

I don't do anything past 7pm night time is my time. Stop being so hard on yourself. I have stolen my mats DS for the weekend as he is same age as DS, nearly 4, so I get an easy weekend. I would happily have his siblings to give his parents a break for a weekend as they have a 1 year old and a 2 year old so ask your friends you never know what they will say.

I am strict and wil say one story only so choose and I also say that I am saying good night now and if they have to say say it now as I won't be coming back in. Do not be guilt tripped in being everything for you children as it's impossible to be everything. I'm a mum and I do the best. I am happier now i have got to grips with that and so is DS.

It gets better it really does and this is from someone that had PND and PTSD from having DS. Be consistent and let them know that no means no x

chocoreturns Sat 28-Sep-13 20:29:27

thank you Iwantanafternoonnap for some reason your post made me feel a bit teary. I definitely need to sort out what's going on emotionally for me right now, my parents are commenting on it and I know I'm not myself. I saw the GP and he said it's due to ongoing abuse/manipulation (although only emotional now) and referred me to CBT. Honestly I can't see myself having the time or energy to do it though right now, when I can barely summon the motivation to clean my loo!

I do let him sleep in sometimes, but he's a jiffler and I get kicked and wiggled on a lot. Plus, he doesn't sleep well in with me and often if I try and leave him, he'll wiggle about for an hour then sit up, poke me and demand to have me come lie in his bed instead. So now, when he comes in I just pick him up, cuddle for 5 mins and then plonk him back in his. He barely wakes up that way, and I realised it's the least painful option. I'd actually quite like some cuddles!

I've got them down at last (both of them) so I'm going to sneak out for an emergency cig (I wish I didn't but it's the lesser evil these days) and then crack on with the kitchen. I'll do a hygiene clean and everything else can wait. Rock on for Saturday night, hey? smile

Thanks again for replying, I am taking your advice. I will try and stop being so hard on myself and figure out where to start asking for more help x

girliefriend Sat 28-Sep-13 20:40:07

Its bloody hard work looking after kids let alone doing it on your own and adding work into the mix!!

I didn't do any housework other than the bare minimum until dd started school grin

Maybe use the wends your ex has the kids to try and catch up on some of the housework/ jobs etc. If you went on a mission on one of those wends I bet you could get loads done and it would feel much better. If you are feeling generally depressed maybe speak to your g.p.

Don't be hard on yourself like I said it is bloody hard work!!

WithConfidence Sat 28-Sep-13 21:29:13

Same here.

I've been to the GP with chest pains. They said it's not surprising after I went through all the bollox going on at the moment. And basically, I'm doing the right thing, just accept a lot of it is not going to go away and get on with it.

I do an hour or two of housework when ds is with his dad on Sundays. It is amazing the amount you can get done without small people moaning, interupting or the need to be quiet and creep around. Put on some loud music and see it as nesting for your babies coming home.

wavesandsmiles Sat 28-Sep-13 21:41:14

I'm not really getting "stuff" done at all.... My youngest is 9 weeks old today, and his dad has seen him with me but not alone as he's still breastfeeding and not remotely in a routine. My elder 2, especially DD are having a mutiny regarding bedroom tidying. Even my car is disgustingly filthy inside and out.

I started crying about 10'days ago and haven't stopped much since then (first proper crying since the marriage kind of fell apart earlier this year). So I am managing less and less and laundry mountain is getting bigger, and the boxes of recycling scare me. Every day I have a list of about 10 things to do, and manage a few on a good day. But you know, just those few are a few less to do the next day, or the day after.

Ironing doesn't happen at all. That helps. As do emergency cigs (also regretful of those but how else would I cope?) And lists. Sort of helps to see things being crossed out, even if the list looks big to start with.

YippeeKiYayMakkaPakka Sat 28-Sep-13 21:46:47

I saw this in active convos and just wanted to give you a virtual <hug>. I'm not a LP, but I have a 3yo and an almost-1yo and I barely manage to keep on top of things. I take my hat off to you, really. My only advice would be go easy on yourself. In a few years they'll be a bit less dependent on you, and they'll be at school, and you'll have more time to yourself. So what if the house isn't as clean as you'd like for a few years? It gets on top of me as well, and I feel guilty when things need doing, but I know I need some downtime too or I'd implode.

lizzie479 Sat 28-Sep-13 21:50:37

Hi Choco, I pretty much feel the same as you (I have children the same age) Its been a year since the split with my ex and I feel I have hit a wall of exhaustion and sadness. My relationship was EA and he is still punishing me for leaving him by being really nasty. I worry about the kids, I worry about money and I am exhausted and currently sat here in a house reeking of cat pee because the neighbours cat has been climbing through the window and peeing by our tv (and yes I have febrezzed it, got professional cleaners in etc and to no avail) Wher the hell am I going to get money for carpets??? And we do it all on our own. Have a glass of wine tonight and breath in the frsh air of your living roomand think of me ;)

Handywoman Sat 28-Sep-13 22:26:37

Oh choco Not surprising you are overwhelmed, broken nights (normal, yes, easy, NO) plus part-time job with such small ones? OMG please go easy on yourself. I would set aside the next daddy weekend to blitz some of the jobs (goodness me it's amazing what you can do with out small children hanging off your leg). I have two older kids and a full time job. STBXH has the kids e.o.w and I too am exhausted but the idea of broken night's too.... can your XP have them every weekend? Or every Sunday, so you are not slogging for 14 days straight? Sending you wine and a hug

chocoreturns Sat 28-Sep-13 22:53:23

gosh thank you every one for the encouragement and kind words - I really appreciate it. I've had a really good chinwag with my friend tonight and feel much better. The kitchen is sanitary (at least!) and the breakfast table is cleared, so I feel ready to go and excavate my get into bed. The piles of laundry can wait until we're all out of pants...

No wine for me, I find it makes the depressed feelings SO much worse it's not worth it. Chocolate on the other hand is a godsend. There's not much to do except soldier on, and make a big fat list of things to do. You're right, the essential things always do seem to get done. Eventually once my butts against the wall

I will keep my fingers crossed for a relatively unbroken night and report back when I feel less miserable, thank you again!

chocoreturns Sat 28-Sep-13 22:55:41

ps, I also trawled MN for some funnies and anyone who is feeling as pants as I am right now needs to read this. It's quite possibly the funniest thread I've ever seen, had me laughing out loud! over here ladies!

God bless MN, one and all smile

ProtectiveMother Sat 28-Sep-13 23:53:38

Choco I think that you should not worry about the house and do something for you on a weekend. Take yourself off somewhere. Anywhere. For a night with kids, to a friends or a day trip. Go window shopping, try on gorgeous dresses, take a bath, do some exercise (always makes me feel great). I would say do things that make you feel good and then you'll be in a better position to tackle the housework when you're ready to. :-)

PleaseLetsGoToSleep Sun 29-Sep-13 10:55:46

I think it's about just surviving Choco until your dc get a bit older, that's what I suspect most of us are doing, absolutely including myself.
Very much agree with Protective Mother, schedule something for yourself for your next free weekend, preferably away from home. I always find it helps rejuvenate me a bit,plus it's something to look forward to.
Have you got Homestart in your area? I can't recommend them enough for how much they have helped me, and your visitor will def help out with housework if needed. Barnardos may be an alternative if not Homestart.
Hope you had a better night last night. X

ProtectiveMother Sun 29-Sep-13 11:32:56

That's right it's survival. When ppl come to my house its never as clean as I would like it to be and often far from it! I've stopped beating myself up about it and if ppl stop and think about my life at the moment, they won't judge me for it :-)

ProtectiveMother Sun 29-Sep-13 11:36:04

Someone once said to me that you would be crazy to do housework in your child-free time. I kind of agree. I get my kids to help me w housework more and more. My son is good at hoovering and tidying (6) and my daughter (3) good at hanging out washing and drying dishes. They enjoy helping. :-)

ProtectiveMother Sun 29-Sep-13 11:45:16

Oh and my son takes the recycling out :-) Its not a lot of help at all but it makes us feel like a team and makes me feel less alone

WhoKnew2010 Sun 29-Sep-13 18:15:00

Thank you so much for that link chocoreturns. I was having a difficult day with my three but have been crying with laughter at the <immac the baby's head> thread. Can go and start cooking now. Your post was exactly what I needed smile

bluebeardsbabe Sun 29-Sep-13 22:57:41

I am at home with 11 month old dd and on my own with her most of the day. I realise when she goes to bed at 7 how exhausted I am. I never get a break (or rarely through friends and family). It's been like this for nearly a year now so I can't really remember any more what it was like sleeping through the night, or having a lie in, or relaxing, or spending a day doing stuff just for myself. I love her to bits but realise I need to reclaim a bit of my own life too. I find any time when she is sleeping is spent frantically doing laundry, cleaning, putting things away etc etc as unforunately I am one of those people who finds it hard to relax in an untidy house...crap I know, I should just be able to sit in a tip and relax in the evenings!

I have no answers, I just keep going. Yesterday dd slept in the pram as I did the food shopping. When we got back I prayed she would sleep for another 15 mins or so to allow me to unpack and have some lunch but no, she woke up, and I had this moment where I just thought, 'I can't do this anymore' but you do, and you survive. Dd is at the age where she can't be left unsupervised for a second as she is into everything, climbing stairs, furniture etc. I never switch my brain off!!

Sorry just realised I hijacked your thread and went off on my own pity rant. I have no answers but I do know you can and you will manage, like all of us. I actually managed to sit on the sofa for a while and gaze at dd and think how amazing she is. That is something I rarely feel I have the energy to do crazy as it sounds. Must do more of it.

The lonely bit is hard too, I can't remember the last time I went out of an evening. Weekends are lonliest as everyone else seems to be doing stuff with partners. I have a few single parent friends luckily so we meet up occaisionally but I find most people wrapped up in their own lives. I try and go out everyday, if even just for walks or to play groups. Just a bit of human contact smile

chocoreturns Mon 30-Sep-13 14:34:27

hey bluebeardsbabe don't feel bad for hijacking, we're all in the same boat here! I'm so tired you could barely scrape me out of bed this morning and am wandering around with two eyes so heavy I look like I've been punched.

Still, at least the laundry is my only major task for the afternoon - beds are changed, washing up is done. Could do with getting on with some batch cooking but we'll see! I went for a walk at lunch time and it felt good to get outside and get some fresh air.

I also consciously try to enjoy my boys, they do some really adorable things at the moment and despite everything being a bloody hard slog they are worth it, of course. A few more early nights are on the cards though!! Roll on the stage when they can help to tidy up like yours do protectivemother smile

princessx Tue 08-Oct-13 16:11:31

Hi choco,

Sounds from your last post that things are getting g better. I just wanted to recommend the flylady website, it's basically a self-help website for people who struggle with housework.

I signed up for the emails a few months ago, and it's definitely helped my mindset around an overwhelming amount of housework. It's big message is just do something for 15 minutes, then stop and have a rest, even if the task isn't completed.

The link is

Hedgehog42 Mon 14-Oct-13 22:30:09

Hey, much sympathy, I'm on my own with a 2 year old, its bloody hard work, so with 2....stop beating yourself up!

can i please urge you to go for the CBT, i was referred as my ex was a manipulative shit who destroyed my self esteem, and it was the best thing i did. Will make you view your life from a different perspective.

Don't get hung up on what you see as the right thing to do (cleaning, sleeping etc). Sleep when you want, have the kids in bed if they need it. They need comfort too, and might be picking up on your sadness. In years to come they won't remember how clean the house was, just do what needs doing, that is enough. I turn cleaning into a game with my son, it helps that he is obsessed with sponges and bubbles so he is a bit messy but it means i can have a go at the bathroom/kitchen and he thinks he is helping!

There's a book called "good enough mother", cant remember author, sorry, but if you can get it from your library it would be worth a look.

I'm sorry its so hard for you now. Take the pressure off yourself by just doing what's necessary for a bit until kids are older, please.

chocoreturns Tue 15-Oct-13 09:49:38

thank you guys, I just saw the latest replies. Life has been a bit crazy again - my boiler was condemned last week, so me and the kids have been staying with my mum and dad to avoid freezing. The workmen are in today replacing it.

I've made a decision to relocate to a local city about 45 mins away, which will make a huge difference to us and help me to be more connected in the long run with work opportunities and friends. Right now though it's another worry, as I am house hunting and looking for a primary school for next year... and DS1 told his daddy we are getting a new house, so I had the ex on my doorstep yesterday wanting to know what is going on sad

He has said he'll be emailing me re: the move. I know it's stupid/only an email, and it's not something he can prevent happening, it's just one more thing I was hoping to avoid. I really, really don't want him sticking his oar in at this stage. Schools are catchment based so there's nothing to discuss really - where we can afford to live is where DS will go to school. Obviously I'm trying to live near a nice school but I don't want the ex to try and dictate where that is!

He has also tried to tell me that he wants DS1 to go to the primary in HIS catchment. He spends 36 hours a fornight with the boys at the moment. There is no way I am going to apply for DS to go near him, I'd be driving 20 mins each way from my current address, nearly an hour each way from the new area. And the only way it would work is if DS1 was resident with him over my dead body surely? I hate the anxiety I get from dealing with all of this crap.

I'm starting the CBT tomorrow. I hope it helps

Glowbuggy Tue 15-Oct-13 10:35:33

De-lurking here choco! Just wanted to tell you that you sound like such an amazing strong woman and your ex is just an utter utter cunt...again and again. Many aspects of your posts help me with parts of my coping processes and I wanted you to know that, so thank you.


I now have a huge bone to pick with you. Remember the link you posted above 'for a laugh'? Well I'm now writing to you with an ice pack between my legs. That's right, I veeted my lady garden. All of it. It's not smooth, or silky or even HAIR FREE. I'm so fucking itchy that even my ears are sweating. My lady garden looks like a spotty 15 year old boys face with acne, random bum fluff and smells like cheap aftershave.

So thanks. grin

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