I really need some help.(10 Posts)
Oh this is so hard to write. I don't even know where to begin. I suppose I'll begin at the beginning..
I didn't want a baby. I have a history of depression and anxiety, I also have emetophobia which I knew would (and has!) make parenting a difficult prospect. I just didn't see it. I got pregnant with ds because I met my dh and I thought he would make a wonderful father, and he is a wonderful father. However I have found being a mother even harder than I ever thought I would.
My ds is 2.1yo. He is the most wonderful, intelligent, sweet and amazing little boy in the world to me. I honestly do love him more than anything.
I found it tough from the beginning though. I struggled to bf, ds was colicky and screamed all the time. I spent most of the first 6 months of his life in a sobbing heap on the floor. I just couldn't do it, whatever it was that makes for a happy mum and baby. I wished I hadn't had him, back then. It was a terrible time.
When ds was 12mo we lost our flat. The LL put the rent up and we couldn't afford it. We decided to move in with my dad and my elderly nan ( he lives with her to care for her, they had 2 spare rooms ) he wasn't going to charge us hardly anything to live there, it seemed a perfect solution, but it has proved to be the start of my nightmares.
Right from the beginning, my nan and dad took over. They would feed him biscuits when I said no, let the dog lick his toys, they would cuddle him and say 'naughty mummy' when I tried to gently discipline him when he had been naughty. Consequently he is never told no. They hogged him, he began to run to them instead of me. My dad more than once called him his son, instead of grandson. Slip of the tongue he said. I began to feel redundant.
As the months have gone past.. I realised I have retreated more and more from my ds. From being his mummy. I don't make any decisions about him. I dont parent him. I've forgotten how. He doesnt run to me. He runs to them, or dh. I feel like I may as well not exist. I can't stand them around me so I spend a lot of time either at work or upstairs away from them. Away from ds.
We've got a flat now. We move out in about a month, its going to be just me, dh and ds again. I really can't wait but I am so scared. I feel like I am going to have to learn how to be a parent all over again. I feel that the thread that once bound me and ds so strongly is so weak now. I feel so awful about it. I so, so want to have a strong bond with my son.
Why have I let this happen to us? How can I fix this? I'm so worried about the future for us. Thanks for reading I'm sorry it was so long!
I really think you need to get some support - I really think Social Services or a Sure Start/Childrens Centre could help - honestly there's loads they could do to help you. You owe it to yourself and to your baby.
Good luck honey.
It is incredibly difficult to parent while living with your parents. Your role as a parent gets muddled up with your role as a child (and most of us regress around our parents) and if they undermine your authority while you are dependent on them it puts you in a very difficult position. This really isn't your fault.
Two year olds adjust very very quickly so long as they have built a secure attachment in their early days (which it sounds like your little boy has). Once you move into your own flat he will very quickly readjust to you as his main carer. If you care enough to worry about your bond with your son, you care enough to be an excellent mother. If you are worried about practicalities or techniques for establishing boundaries it might be helpful to take a parenting class (and cherry pick what makes sense to you for your family).
Above all you need to have faith in yourself and your decisions about your child. So long as you put his wellbeing first you won't go far wrong.
you'll be ok! you will, you will! your son loves you, you love him and without the others taking over you will be able to step up without feeling like anyone is watching over your shoulder.
Being a parent is really scary, it is such a huge responsibility! However, there is a difference between normal worry and fretting over parenthood and depression, feelings of alienation and isolation, sadness and helplessness. If you feel completely lost could you go and see your GP and have a chat? They might be able to help you or refer you for help. If you need help it is not because you are weak or incapable it is because you are human and looking to improve things for your family. This is a show of strength.
good luck OP, hold on in there and congrats on your lovely son
And btw, it doesn't sound like you are in a place for it right now, but one day you might be around these people and be able to stand up to your full height, push back your shoulders and stand proudly and squarely on your own two feet. You are the parent, you are YOU and just fine and dandy for it and you'll be surprised by how good it makes you feel to not be scared or feel inadequate any more (trust me, I did this with my mum which, yes, meant I was kicked out of the family but it felt so sweet for me to, for once, like being me ).
ps I don't know if these people do work to make you feel inadequate but for some reason you do. it could be depression making it feel like you are being treated like this. all the best
Thankyou all. I really needed to hear comments like those, they've helped me feel a lot more positive. The main thing is, I love ds and he loves me right? Thats a good foundation to start from. I've been to see my Dr and he has given me Citalopram, I havent had these before, so hopefully they will help. Am also going to speak to someone about how I'm feeling. We'll get there. Thankyou
There is nothing that you can do about the past and the past doesn't matter. Ahead of you is the future: a fresh start and an opportunity for everyone
Go for it, get out there, develop your own parenting style and start enjoying your son and your family again
How about a bit of background reading to give you some direction and confidence? Jo Frost's (supernanny) "Confident Toddler Book" is a rather nice book.
And don't forget that Mumsnet is here. It may not be easy (adjusting DS to a different lifestyle), but you can do it and longer term he will be a LOT happier (much more mummy time and some firm, consistent boundaries)
Oh I really want to give you a hug ((()))
Look, bloody well done so far. I absolutely know how you felt in the early days (though I didn't have to contend with others taking over) but I felt like I couldn't do it either. Not a clue. Felt detached, like a spare part, fumbling around hoping what I was doing was right. I had not one maternal bone in my body. Plastered a smile on my face and pretended everything was fine, when inside I was screaming "Can no-one see that I'm CRAP at this? I'm totally winging it!!"
I felt no connection with DS. I fed him, clothed him, cuddled and kissed him, told him I loved him...but....I didn't really connect with the feeling? And he deserved more, more than I was capable giving him. Or so I thought.
One day (and I've posted this before on MN) when he was 4, he went to the toilet. For ages, he'd been trying to reach the light pull and on THIS day he managed it. He was elated and came running in to tell me, threw his arms round my legs and hugged me. From NOWHERE, came this...this...TORRENT of emotion that juddered through me. And it was "that" thunderbolt feeling that I'd heard everyone talk about. That feeling of actually feeling "the love". And I held him like I'd never held him before and sobbed my heart out. For about 10 minutes. And he never questioned it. He actually just smiled at me and I knew that smile was saying "I knew you'd get there eventually"
It will all come together. As a previous poster said, kids are incredibly adaptable early on. Start as you mean to go on. Start gently but firmly with the discipline and show him how it's going to be from now on. And have FUN! All the fun things you felt unable to do before for fear of xyz. Want an afternoon getting covered in paint/dough? Then do it! He'll have a ball. Pick your battles and guide him. Ask for help. Read books. Post away on here.
All the very best x
You will be FINE. You've had difficult circumstances but thankfully you're getting out of it. Yes, it will be a bit of an adjustment but imagine you had to stay there for years? You're getting your life back, your son back. And remember, he IS your son. Please don't let latent insecurity divert you from that fact. Grandparents can be wonderful but they have their place. Nothing compensates for real mothering and that only comes from you. I'm so happy for you that you've got this opportunity now. Good luck to all of you.
Have you told your DH how you are feeling? If he can understand a little and support you in getting your place in the family back in place it would really help e.g. In encouraging your DS to ask you for things instead of him all the time, defer decisions to you "let's ask mummy what she thinks". It will pass the message on to your DS that you are to be respected and you know what you're doing.
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