I feel like I'm failing!!

(6 Posts)
Zena87 Sun 28-Feb-16 10:34:53

Hi, me and my partner separated last October, we have 3 little 3 boys 4,2 and 1. In the beginning when he left I was managing fine, I almost felt liberated by the change and had every faith in myself that I could manage on my own and I was doing a good job for my boys. These last few weeks tho iv started to struggle, I feel like I have no control over them, they constantly fight and hurt each other, they hurt me hitting and kicking, they destroy the house always making a mess and I can't keep on top of the housework there is too much to do. If I tell them no theyl do it anyway, it seems like I'm always telling them off. My youngest wakes up in the night and then wakes the others up so all of us are deprived of sleep somedays.

Ive always had a good routine which I try and stick to but I feel that's slipping. They have marble jars to try and encourage good behaviour but theyv lost interest in those. I struggle to find time to do activities when we are at home because the house is always a tip there is no space to do anything with them, by time I tidy one room and move on to the next they've made a mess again. Yesterday I sat down and told them if they played nicely and let me clean up the kitchen which is normally a 20min job we would all make cakes together, and get the play doh out afterwards, it took me 4 hours to clean the kitchen because everytime I left the room they would start ripping chunks out of each other and make a mess. I was pushed to my peak yesterday, I locked myself in the bathroom and rang my mum telling her I can't cope. I can't do everything with my 1 pair of hands.

There dad sees them twice a week but he's living in emergency housing and he's not allowed to take the boys there so he sees them here, he will mostly sit on his phone asking for cups of coffee, so it's not like I get a break or a few hours to catch up on the basic things that need doing in order for me to spend quality time with them. Ive tried asking him to take them out to his mums or something but he can't afford the petrol apparently.

I'm up at 5 most days, I was in a routine of getting bits done in the evening when they go bed at 7 but recently I just don't have the motivation. Ive been comfort eating and have put on a Stone since Christmas, I'm beginning to despise myself. I don't know what the difference is now I was doing well but I just feel like a failure somedays, I'm always stressed.

I spend some time out of the house doing school runs, shopping and visiting my only friend, I can honestly say they are great if we are out of the house, they behave and are a pleasure people compliment me on how well behaved they are and tell me I'm doing an amazing job but behind closed doors it's another story. I know they get bored sometimes but I have to get stuff done in the house before I can occupy them.

My youngest is very violent, the eldest two are weary of him because he will attack them hel hit them with anything he has in his hands. Hes always in the cupboards and drawers pulling everything out, he doesn't want to play has no interest in toys. Even if I try and sit down with him to play or do activities he loses interest in 5 mins and goes back on destructive mode. Ive obviously done something wrong for him to be this way.

I know I sound selfish and horrible but I'm really struggling to cope atm, there's no balance. I can't go on like this I need to regain control and get back to managing. I would appreciate any advice or tactics that you might have that could help me get back in the driving seat. I sometimes wonder if I'm depressed, I don't know if I've dealt with me and their dad breaking up really. Ive honestly tried putting the kids first. I'm always skint, I'm paying off debts here there and everywhere, he gives me 100 a month cause that's all he can afford. I'm always worrying about where the money's going to come from to do this and that. Ive been to the job centre recently and we done some calculations to see if me going to work would be possible and the woman said I would be worse off financially, that was truly a kick in the gut because I'd like to go to work my ex would never hear of it but now it's up to me I would like to have my own thing to get up and do, mix with other people, learn new things and all whilst supporting my children.

So yeah, how do you all cope with everything? How do you keep kids organised so you can get on in the house, how do you stop them hurting each other and screaming the roof down? Thanks for reading xx

Claraoswald36 Sun 28-Feb-16 12:02:39

Is the middle one entitled to me too nursery funding? That was my first thought.
Secondly when your ex comes over go out - even if you just go for a walk or do food shopping - unless you don't trust him in your home. Don't make him coffee!

You sound like you might need more formal behavioural support with the youngest. Please ring your health visitor and ask her to visit you at home for a chat.

Also what free/very cheap activities are there near? Is there a children centre you can access?

You sound overwhelmed but you can get back on track x

Claraoswald36 Sun 28-Feb-16 12:04:39

Lastly I would contain them in one room. I frequently ban mine from going upstairs - I want mess in one room only!

Oldladyfish Sun 28-Feb-16 14:45:14

Wow. Zena... it sounds like you're doing INCREDIBLY! three little boys is unbelievably hard work... you're a star. You deserve a medal. Locking yourself in the bathroom and calling your mum sounds like a very sane response! Don't believe the lie that the Little Voice tells you: you are NOT failing. You're heroic.

ohforfoxsake Sun 28-Feb-16 16:10:38

What oldladyfish said.

You are doing brilliantly, you are aware, organised and more on top of things than you think. PP mentioned free nursery places. Is that possible?

Seems to be that you are indeed overwhelmed.

I don't really have any solutions (I feel much the same) but wanted to show some support. I think you are doing really well.

Sallyhasleftthebuilding Sun 28-Feb-16 16:24:17

Your X may be in emergency housing - but he could take the kids out for tea or a walk in the park - or ball pit his parents etc for a 2 hour slot

You need to get him to take the kids out - he can't chose!!

Next - have a day off from the house work once a week - just clean and fed kids - it's no extra effort to tidy two days to one day -

Then work out a rota - so bathroom gets cleaned when the kids are in the bath - kitchen quick once over plus one night a decent clean -

Agree see if any free childcare about some offer from age two

Stop worrying - it's really is fairly short term

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