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large family

(13 Posts)
pammy6 Wed 14-Sep-11 10:35:47

Hi,
I've got six children ,five my own and one step son.They range from 14 years to 6 months .Is there anyone else out there struggling to cope ?
I'm finding it really stressful .There is so much to do and the baby doesn't let me get on with it,and the older ones all argue .There always seems to be someone crying over something trivial or someone hurt themselves or each other .Husband is good but I'm still barely coping somedays.End up shouting and then feel guilty .Also is there anyone out there who has a big family and does it well and can give me some advice ?

ragged Thu 15-Sep-11 10:07:34

I've only got 4 and they overwhelm me.
MN is my excuse of "no-brainer down time."
I think I drink too much wine to cope blush (not huge amounts, just closer to advised limits than I'd like, ideally).

The best mum of many I know is unflappable; she says she gets cross and she does tell them off, but really, she doesn't seem to ever be tearing her hair out. Very cheerful nature, quite good-natured kids who don't seem to ever try to kill each other.

How much time do you get away from them all, Pammy?

pammy6 Thu 15-Sep-11 11:29:03

Time away from them? Well the baby is with me all the time because I'm breast feeding her ,so I don't have any time just me .The others have just gone back to school after a long summer holiday and my four year old has just started in the morning ,so maybe things will get easier .
I do feel vastly outnumbered and overwhelmed.Thanks so much for your reply ,sometimes you look at all the other mothers at school and think everyone else is coping ,why aren't I ?

Jdore Thu 15-Sep-11 12:28:53

They are probably not coping as well as you think they are, who knows what goes on behind closed doors!. I've got 4 , Ds1,12, Ds3, 3, DD1, 3, Ds4 6mths plus a live in mil who has dementia. I sometimes think I shouldn't be a mum, I shout, bribe and on occasions beg! Then I look around everyone smiling and happy and I think yeah its ok. Don't be so hard on yourself. I think I read on here once that instead of shouting at our children we should whisper so they have to really listen to us, my lot just looked at me as if I was mad and carried on!

narmada Fri 16-Sep-11 21:19:18

To be honest, I think if you're managing to keep everyone fed, clothed and this side of dirty you're doing a fantastic job. I only have 2 and I'm worn out by bedtime (theirs, not mine).

That's probably not at all helpful but I just wanted to say you have my admiration smile

confusedperson Fri 16-Sep-11 21:25:58

I look at mums with 3+ children with admiration, but I am glad I got stuck with only two!..

naturalbaby Fri 16-Sep-11 22:13:56

I've (only) got 3 and am tearing my hair out struggling to cope and eyeing up the alcohol! I've had 3 under 3, dc1 just started nursery so a bit of light but baby has a meltdown if i show him a bottle so 'me' time is 1hr a week if i'm lucky and organised. I think that's the only thing that can keep me vaguely sane so am trying to get at least 2 1hr sessions away from the house and kids each week, but have failed this week so far.

i've been racking my brains trying to come up with a magic solution but think i just need to chill out and desperately try to enjoy it more, then chill out some more! our daily routine is a nightmare at the moment and all change with the start of the nursery run so am trying to get that sorted at the moment.

BBwannaB Sat 17-Sep-11 15:46:29

Pammy have you thought of contacting your local Home-Start office, they may have a volunteer who could come and help out for a few hours each week. www.home-start.org.uk/homepage
Maybe teatime/bedtime to give you a chance to 'divide and rule' occaisionally? Someone to chat to and offer friendly advice, non-judgemental help.

Or if you can afford it maybe you could employ a local student/older teenager to come and help with homework/reading/evening activities for a couple of hours once or twice a week.

sunshinewanted Sat 17-Sep-11 17:05:04

I always made a point of asking anyone with 4 or more kids for tips when I had my third and I got some very useful advice in RL. Not sure I can offer any advice to you with 5 but I have followed the advice given with great success so it is certainly worth asking.

pammy6 Sun 18-Sep-11 08:17:39

Thank you so much to everyone who replied to me ,you are very kind and what you say makes me feel much better ,it's nice to know that other people find motherhood hard work too and I'm not just completely useless .
To naturalbaby similarly my baby won't take a bottle ,none of mine did, so 'me' time is impossible .I guess we'll just have to hang in there until they are weaned a bit more .Keep up your 1hr sessions!
To BBwannaB I think I will look into the home start thing.Thanks that's really useful.
I guess the reality of being a mum is just far different from what we are led to believe beforehand by the Tv ,movies ,magazines ,etc !
Thanks for your support .

zaphod Sun 18-Sep-11 08:29:55

Don't worry' I have five, eldest 17, youngest 8. They fight and bicker constantly, and are generally horrible to each other, shattering my view that large families get along with each other. I tell myself that they are preparing each other for the big bad world cos if they can survive the constant name calling and put downs at home, they can survive anything!

hayesgirl Sun 18-Sep-11 20:37:19

I come from a large family, 2 brothers and 3 sisters (I'm the oldest at 29 and youngest is 12) - it was and still is slightly chaotic but in all honesty we all loved it as kids and now when we are all together it's really nice - we all bicker and fight on occasion but that's half the fun. Don't know how the parents felt about it though!

pammy6 Mon 19-Sep-11 11:24:26

Thanks Zaphod ,maybe my children are just normal then ,sometimes I was thinking 'why are my children so nasty to each other? What did I do wrong ?'
What you say is reassuring.Hayesgirl -thanks for the long view ,coming from a small family ,what my children have is a completely different world to my childhood .It's nice to think that maybe they will grow up and remember all the chaos and noise as a good thing!

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