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2nd baby - does everyone find it easy?

(23 Posts)
DontShootTheDog Sun 17-Jul-11 10:50:15

DC2 is 3 weeks old and everyone seems to say it is so much easier with 2nd etc. I don't think it is!

I adored having DC1, the whole newborn stage and every stage since (now 3 years). I thought I was 'a natural' so am surprised at how different I feel now. I am wishing new born stage away, don't feel hugely bonded to DC2 (I am not depressed, I do like new baby, just not the passionate adoration I felt for DC1 immediatly). I am tired and stressed and find it hard to be unable to put baby down to get on with things as I had got so used to dc1 being so easy and fun to be with.

I feel very nostalgic for how life was, so easy and fun spending time with dc1. Does anyone else ever feel like this and will it get better soon? I feel bad that I am not loving every second as I thought I would sad

DontShootTheDog Sun 17-Jul-11 10:51:15

I also feel desperately sad that DC1 hasn't got me to himself anymore, though he seems fine so think that is my problem. Oh the guilt!

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 17-Jul-11 11:06:54

So sorry that you aren't finding this easy, but please be assured that what you are feeling seems normal.

If you are finding it hard putting LO down, have you got a sling? You may find that after a feed and nappy change they will sleep in the sling, giving you time to spend with DC1.

Are you managing to get out too and are you getting any support?

The NCT has a helpline where you can talk through your feelings in confidence, please give them a ring, I think you would find it helpful here.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 17-Jul-11 11:11:09

Thought I would just add that I did baby massage with DC2 and found this a good way to focus on DC2 whilst DC1 was been looked after by MIL. Your local Children's Centre might run baby massage classes.

DC1 also went to pre-school too, which helped enourmously. Does your DC1 go anywhere? I'm assuming that if they are 3 you will be entitled to free funding.

camdancer Sun 17-Jul-11 14:10:39

When DD arrived I felt very much like you did. I was almost resentful of DD because she was taking time away from DS. Then I'd feel guilty about feeling resentful. All that on top of feeling guilty for changing DS's life so much. It was quite overwhelming. I had to keep reminding myself that I love having siblings and that is why I wanted DD so close in age to DS.

So what helped?
1. getting out every day. Preferably somewhere that DS enjoyed.
2. having time with DS. People kept being helpful and offering to take DS out but what I really needed was time with him. So I explained that to DH and he took DD into the garden or just held her while I played with DS.
3. time. Once DD could be put into her bouncy chair then I could spend time with DS. Once she slept properly in the afternoon it was great.
4. acceptance. Realising that I'd never have so much time with just DS but that is ok because he has a sister and that will eventually be a good thing.

It is hard but it gets better. Sadly it doesn't get better quickly and it is a bit up and down. But after 6 months life was easier. After a year even easier. They are now 2 and 4 and great friends. They play together, which is wonderful. It must have become easier 'cos I've just had DD2! It has all started again with me now feeling bad for both DS and DD1. This time though I know it'll get better.

susiesheep2 Sun 17-Jul-11 17:19:57

lovely post camdancer smile

Loopymumsy Sun 17-Jul-11 20:01:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PorkChopSter Sun 17-Jul-11 20:31:53

I found the leap from 1 to 2 the most difficult. DS had ruled our lives, sort of grin, whatever we did had him in mind - eating, drinking, sleeping, activities etc. I was also working FT until the day before DD was born. The first 8-12 weeks were hell because whatever I did, one of the children had to come second. I had to pick one of them! And my heart said DC1 because he needed his routine and I was so worried about upsetting him, and my head said DC2 because she was so tiny and was relying totally on me.

In the end I realised that
1. both were going to have to wait, sometimes, for something
2. it is possible to muddle through, things don't have to be perfect everytime
3. DC2 is never going to get the same first few weeks of bewilderment attention as DC1 did

How many first time mothers are still unshowered and sitting on the sofa in a dressing gown at 3pm surrounded by litter and still in the middle of a 3 hour feeding session? And second time round you are expecting yourself to have you and two children up, dressed, fed and at toddler group at 10am shock

PorkChopSter Sun 17-Jul-11 20:33:06

Not entirely sure what the point of that ^^ is hmm but just to say, been there. 2-3 and 3-4 were far simpler transitions grin

sparkle1977 Sun 17-Jul-11 20:33:27

I too found it extremely hard going at first when I had DC2. It only lasted for about four months tho and then I felt like I was on top of it all again (if you are ever really on top of it all that is!) and that I could cope with two and things slowly by slowly got easier. It will get easier for you too, just give yourself time.

Like someone else said plan to do things most days so you are not sat about moping about how hard it is. Get out and about as much as you can, it will get easier.

CharlotteBronteSaurus Sun 17-Jul-11 20:39:11

no. dd2 was a much more difficult baby than dd1.
they were equally shite sleepers, but when dd1 was small i napped in the day. dd1 cunningly gave up napping as soon as i was pg with dd2. we did have a really bad spell when dd2 was about about 4 mo when i was so tired and irritable that it was starting to affect my relationship with dd1.

things have got better in the last 2 months, when dd2 could sit up steadily and entertain herself with a toy, or even play a bit with dd1. i am now really enjoying having them both. they adore each other and that's just the best thing ever. I would still sell my soul for a good 8 hr sleep though.

z123 Sun 17-Jul-11 20:42:58

There are some really encouraging posts here, for me especially porkchopster and camdancer. I don't have a second child yet, but am TTC and crossing my fingers while already worrying about how I will manage and how DD1 (now 10 months) will cope/feel about it.

I am glad I have recently 'found' MN!!!

runningmonkey Sun 17-Jul-11 20:44:57

You are definitely not alone! (dc2 is 9 weeks tomorrow)
I agree with all of the advice but would like to add that you shouldn't feel guilty if you don't make it out of the house - I have been killing myself to get out with both dcs every day but realised that was stressing me out too so now we have one day where we don't go anywhere. We usually have an indoor picnic on the living room rug, read lots of books while I feed ds, and of course watch beebies together. I don't try to get anything else done apart from maybe a load of washing. Seems to be working so far smile

eversoslightlytired Sun 17-Jul-11 20:48:52

I have a 4yo DS and a 4 month DD. I was absolutely heartbroken after having her that I had turned my DS's world upside down and that he was no longer the centre of my attention. I cried for the first two weeks, not with post natal depression or because of the baby but because I felt so guilty that I had changed DS's life is such a (what I thought) dramatic way. I explained all this to DH who spent the majority of his parental leave doing things with DS whilst I seemed to be constantly stuck on settee breastfeeding. I did however try to give him his bed time story.

I do still feel the same way now as you can guarantee that he will ask me to do or play something with him just as I have to feed DD.

HOWEVER, I also feel guilty that DD is not getting my attention enough as I have been so concerned about the amount of time DS was getting but it is now starting to get a bit easier to entertain them both at the same time. It does help that DS and DD are besotted with each other!

happywheezer Sun 17-Jul-11 20:53:13

I am finding it difficult too.
I had terrible guilty feelings through my second pregnancy because I'm an only child and I had a lovely life- why would I do that to my beautiful boy and ruin his life?
I feel better now DS2 has arrived.
But it is so much harder than I thought. I didn't like my DS2. He is not any easy baby, won't be put down etc. It's better now too he's smiling and DS1 likes his new brother. DS2 is 9 weeks old.
It's so hard to get out of the house with two small children though on my own!

DontShootTheDog Sun 17-Jul-11 22:17:18

goodness, been away from MN most of the day; so lovely to return to these encouraging responses. thanks so much to you all, I feel much more positive now and not like such a failure or a weirdo for feeling like this. Everso I feel like that and DH keeps suggesting I am depressed but I knoew I am not (have been before and would know), just guilty and sad for beloved DS1.

Great to know it gets better and, as porkchop said, "How many first time mothers are still unshowered and sitting on the sofa in a dressing gown at 3pm surrounded by litter and still in the middle of a 3 hour feeding session? And second time round you are expecting yourself to have you and two children up, dressed, fed and at toddler group at 10am" Wise words!

thanks so much, here's to a new week, closer to things getting easier smile

Goldenbear Sun 17-Jul-11 22:43:25

Another one finding it hard. I have a 4 year old DS and a 4 month DD. I adore them both but it is hard when you just simply cannot give all the attention to the one. My DS's behaviour is pretty bad at the moment i think because of the changes. He has a meltdown nearly everyday - one in the shops over an icecream that had sold out lasted 15 mins, the baby was upset too, i could've cried with exhaustion and a feeling of dread in having to deal with yet another emotional scene! .........However, things feel better than they did when DD arrived in that i dont feel every day is yet another one gone by where i've failed to Meet either child's needs.

plantsitter Sun 17-Jul-11 23:15:14

I found/ am finding it difficult too. DD1 is 2 and 5 months and DD1 is 7 months. Things have improved drastically since DD2 could sit up on her own and DD1 seems to quite like her now. But you are definitely not alone.

In the first weeks I thought we were doing well if only 2 of us were crying at the same time!

LuciaLyca Sun 17-Jul-11 23:23:21

A baby and a toddler at once is just ... so difficult to cope with, don't be hard on yourself, you may know more of the practicalities and have some experience, but I'd be surprised if anyone finds it "easy"! I've never found having a baby "easy" ... It does get a bit easy-ER tho!
Best of luck

superjobee Sun 17-Jul-11 23:28:20

ive got all this to come .. DD is 6 and has been pretty much perfect from birth, fed well slept well teethed without problems barely cried she was honest to god a poster child for having kids, im so worried that DS is going to be a nightmare! DD wanted a wee sister so ive let her down there, i dont spend enough time with her as im always sleepy/moody/generally feeling ill. OH is away working and i feel so guilty for DD as this is the last time we have just mummy daughter time till the house goes mad when OH returns then DS is born sad i feel terrible for her and so worried i wont cope. OH and i have our plans sorted for dealing with 2 kids but even tho DD will be at school i will more than likely end up in a crying mess on the floor at 5 to 3 begging OH to pick her up because i dont want to shower or go out .. a friend asked me the other week what i'll do when i have DS i turned to her and said ''i'll get OH to take DD to school then i'll sit at home with my depression'' its practically a given in my mind that i will end up with pnd as i had it with DD sad

im so glad there are positive tales here it makes me feel a bit stronger for when the time comes that if i do feel overwhelmed it wont last forever!!

superjobee Sun 17-Jul-11 23:29:09

oh my god that ended up a massive rant im so sorry OP ive blimmin hijacked! blush

TheBreastmilksOnMe Sun 17-Jul-11 23:39:52

Hi- I've got a nearly 3yr old DS and a 6mth old DD and I have felt all of the feelings people describe- the guilt, the worry, the anxiety. But- it does get easier and I absoloutly adore my two children.

DD is so different to DS and I love them both to bits. They adore each other too and DS is the only one who can make DD laugh the way she does. It is the best gift we can give them as parents- each other- because when DP and I have gone, they will still have each other and all the wonderful memories of growing-up so when I am wracked with negative feelings I try to think of the psitives that have hapened during the day, realise that it is stressful but that's normal and that they will hopefully gow up with a strong bond and a happy childhood together. It's all we can do.

Linnet Sun 17-Jul-11 23:48:49

I found it harder with dd2 than dd1. the main thing that bothered me was not seeming to have the time to spend with dd1, who was 6 when new baby arrived, the way I had before I felt she was just getting pushed to the side as the baby needed fed,changed put to bed etc

Lots of things were easier in that I knew what to expect but dd2 was a totally different temperment from dd1 who was very easy going and dd2 cried constantly for the first 6 months, didn't want put down and like you I felt I just couldn't get on with anything.

It did get easier the older dd2 got and dd1 was able to play with her a bit and once dd2 was able to sit and move about it was better.

It's early days yet give yourself time it does get better.

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