New to mumsnet.. need to talk to someone.(15 Posts)
I'm new to mumsnet and this board. So hi! I really need to talk to someone and I'm going to warn you, I need to say some things which go against the holy grail of parenthood.. I hate being a mum. I hate being a lone parent. I hate how trapped and suffocated I feel ALL the time. I hate how dominating my daughter is. I can't stand the tantrums, the constant demands, the clingyness. I can't stand the fact that I don't have ANY freedom to choose the things that make me feel content in life. I can't even watch something on the tele without it turning into a battle of power and wills. I can't leave the room without her following me. She stands next to me when I'm on the bloody toilet. She is four and a half and I thought by now she'd be starting to get a bit more independent. But the separation anxiety is just as bad and she's frantic about getting things her way all the time. If something doesn't go as she wants she freaks out. On the train to meet her dad the other day she had a half hour tantrum becuase she dropped her crisps. This involved screaming ear shattering screams, kicking, hitting, scratching my face. All I could do was hold her and keep telling her to calm down (I also confisgated her tablet for the weekend as punishment) and then hug her for the next half hour while she got over the tantrum. She is really hard work all the time. She argues with everything and is reflexively obstructive to all requests made of her. And I have never done anything other than caring, understanding parenting. I'd understand this if I'd been cut off and uncaring but I'm a big believer in positive parenting. Admittedly, we have moved recently so we can be closer to my parents and this has taken her further away from her dad. But he's never been that much help anyway so not much has changed in terms of her contact with him.
The thing is, I love her very very much. But there are times when I really regret having her. My life is reduced to nothing. She's so much hard work, and so stressful through the week that by the time I get 'time off' at the weekend I'm so exhausted all I can do is sleep and watch tele. I've lost touch with all my friends. I have literally no energy left for anything else and my life is utterly worthless. I have fantasies about going back in time and stopping myself marrying a man who turned out to be a total waste of space. And setting my life in a different direction. But of course I can't do that. So I'm stuck here, with a child who makes my life hell and nothing else. I'm so tired all the time. I just want it all to stop.
I'm not sure what I want from telling you all this. I just thought if I didn't tell someone I'd explode. I guess it'd be nice to know if anyone else has felt like this. And if it gets better? Or what they did about a child who is so demanding and bullying. ANY help gratefully accepted!
I have no advice apart from virtual hug and hand holding, and I wanted to tell you that reading your post I felt like reading about my life and my son. He is also 4.5 and behaves in exactly the same way as your daughter, word for word. It is bloody hard and I hope it will pass because I am also on the brink of nervous breakdown.
Is your DD's dad properly involved? My ex husband is useless and can't even keep seeing our son every two weeks. I have notice some of my son's violent behaviour comes from feeling rejected and he takes it on me.
I hope someone comes along soon and offer good advice how to deal with it.
If you've moved recently, quite a distance from the sound of it, I'd guess you're BOTH feeling exhausted, isolated and a bit scared. I do get how overwhelming the clinging can be, and how much energy it takes. It is very hard work. But it absolutely will get better. If she is 4.5 she perhaps has anxiety about a new school too?
My similar age LO finds a picture calendar helps - marked off bit of the fridge with the days of the week, and blue tacked pictures of all the places and activities we do regularly including home. We put the pictures on together in the morning for that day, so LO knows exactly what to expect that day, and we go back and look at it whenever there's a wobble.
Take care of yourself, that's loads of change for you both lately
Hi welcome to Mumnet...You have moved to be closer to your parents are they giving you any support?
At this age children ( whether from separated parents or not) are learning their own opinions and really don't want to do things you way.
They are exhausting years.. I can tell you as a mum of an 8 year old it does get easier. You start having more conversations with you.. they don't want to watch the same program over and over again. they can do simple things that help.
Moving is stressful for both you ..Don't expect too much too soon
Thanks for the replies ladies. It really helps to just get it out. Today was a particularly bad day and not all of them feel this desperate. Most of the time I can muddle along. It's just that occasionally I feel like nothing is ever going to get better and I fall apart.
I know moving will have unsettled her a bit and that 4 is a difficult age. I've done visual timetables for her before and they've definitely helped so I'll knock one up again. And yes, she's probably nervous about starting school soon. It's all change for her at the moment and she's not able to understand the anxiety that might cause her.
My folks are giving me more support but it doesn't seem to be helping my stress levels. I'm not sure why. I just wish I wasn't so tired all the time.
Do you have a TV in your room..At that age DS would come in my room in the morning and watch tv while I dozed.He was a terrible sleeper...Do you think you might be a bit depressed as that can cause tiredness...Anemic? it may be worth eliminating anything physical...
Also be aware your DD is picking up on your emotions too. Not that it stops you been tired or stressed i just can have a knock on effect
I know Starlight. It's a vicious circle. She always picks up when I'm stressed. I do sometimes suffer with depression. It rears its ugly head every so often. And I'm in the process of setting up a new business so I've been very anxious and stressed anyway. I think I've spent the last 3 years constantly stressed and I've completely exhausted my adrenal gland. I know kids are super sensitive to stressed parents. And the more she acts up in reaction the more stressed I get. I just have no idea how to stop the cycle. I'm now so constantly anxious I don't know how to be any other way. I can't afford counselling and the 8 week wait for 6 weeks of NHS counselling is so tedious and in my experience utterly useless. I keep telling myself I have to just get on with it. There's really nothing else I can do. All I can do is wait for a time when she's less challenging and i might find the energy to improve life in other ways.
You poor thing. You really are going through it right now aren't you
It sounds very tough and like you both need a break .
One thing that has helped my (just turned 5 year old) with arguments and tantrums has been to help her express the emotion verbally
E.g you seem really cross and tired. You normally seem cross when you are hungry /tired .Can I give you a hug /something to eat to make it feel better ?
She can now tell me she feels hungry and cross before losing it (sometimes )
Or she hugs me and pours all the cross into me while I pour happy into her.
I also have zero tolerance for speaking disrespectfully. She has to express herself politely which means that instead of 'i hate you !' she will say I'm feeling really jealous of (sister )'
I'm sorry if you don't want suggestions .It's ok to just rant if you want .We've all been there
Thanks ninetynine.. all suggestions VERY welcome! It's a good one. I've done that before and it does work. Sometimes when I'm really tired I forget and don't have the presence of mind to put good tactics into practice. I know deep down how to deal with my daughter. I think the bigger problem in my head at the moment is how restricted my life is and how lonely I am. I just have no idea how to change that.
Another one who didn't want to read and run. I'm afraid I've got nothing to add other than maybe see if there's any local mumsnet support.
If you were near to me I'd happily bring wine. In the meantime have this one
Sorry I meant nothing useful to add.
My lo is only 22 months.
Currently experiencing sleep regression which is testing my patience. All good practice!
ha ha. Thanks so much Puggymum! I'm quite tempted to get a real glass now. Unfortunately I'm on a low carb diet so I can't! boooooo!
Hi op I'm in London if you are anywhere near
ah, thanks ninetynine. Not near london I'm afraid.
confiscating tablet for whole weekend probably just makes your life difficult if that is what she uses for down time. so don't do things that make your life harder...
reactions to negative behavior need to be immediate and meaningful.
positive reinforcement is good.
longer seek out some local parenting courses if you can just for running thru different strategies.
in short term get some support, get your parents to take her for few hours.
think one day at a time.
one hour at a time.
plan some nice things with her to look forward to.
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