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general parenting anxiety - does anyone else get this??

(7 Posts)
tidyupandeatyourgreens Tue 04-Feb-14 09:29:49

That's it really - I've got dd1 who's almost 6 and a 6 month old but I'm finding that I'm far more anxious about a lot of things this time around although not others things....I feel anxious about feeding (breast, bottle, mix, is she getting enough milk?), weaning (I'm spoon feeding but have read about BLW and wonder if I'm not doing the best for my child?), discipline etc. and the list goes on!

I don't check on dd2 all the time when asleep like I used to with dd1 but I feel far more bombarded with advice and peoples' opinions this time and wonder whether it's because of looking at more on the internet, reading more books and feeling like we are forever told what we should be doing?

I feel pressure to lose weight, be a perfect mother, breastfeed as long as I can, feed nutritious food but not overfeed, ensure my children don't become obese, keep a tidy household, manage the finances and soon start working again!

I've had a lot of anxiety and insomnia this time around although last time I had severe PND which I think I've escaped this time despite a few close calls....I'm bipolar too (type 2) but have decided against going back on long term meds.

I just wonder if what I feel (often overwhelmed, exhausted, fed up!) is just normal or maybe more a sign of my 'condition'?

nibbysmum Tue 04-Feb-14 09:51:12

I definitely feel terribly anxious since becoming a mother. I've always suffered anxiety which I've never done anything about but now it's so much worse. I worry myself sick that lo will get ill, hurt, pick up bad habits, misbehave, not sleep, not feed. I've started to have the same nightmare every night that I have got up in night to feed him (he's 4 months) and brought him to bed and suffocated him ( we never bring him to bed). I wake up hot and feeling sick everyday because of it. I'm going to docs on Friday because it seems abnormal and it's getting my partner down (as well as me). I want to enjoy motherhood but I don't trust any decision I ever make...down to the brand of milk I give my son. Iconstantly doubt myself. I'm not depressed as such but I do feel down that I can't just enjoy my son without the worry that something is wrong ALL the time

tidyupandeatyourgreens Tue 04-Feb-14 09:56:38

oh nibbysmum that does sounds awful! It sounds a bit different to what I went through with my first - I take it ds is your first? Although I had pretty horrible obsessive thoughts (which was the PND), I managed to feel a lot better by 4 months because I was taking sertraline by about 2 weeks post birth and had CBT. You may need some medication to get a handle on your anxiety as it sounds like it's really taken over and you also have the benefit of not breastfeeding so you won't need to worry about it affecting your lo. I think motherhood really does exacerbate things if one already has a tendency to anxiety/depression/mental health issues. However, I do know that there's help out there and I've been through a lot worse and got through it! You're not alone and it does improve and I promise you'll enjoy motherhood at some point. Despite me starting this post, things aren't as bad as they have been in the past so there's hope! I'm just interested to see what other mothers feel.....Good luck x

tidyupandeatyourgreens Tue 04-Feb-14 09:58:17

sorry I didn't mean that I've been through a lot worse that you (I would not minimise what you're going through at all!), I meant that I personally have been through a lot worse than what I'm feeling/experiencing at the moment...just wanted to make that clear!

nibbysmum Tue 04-Feb-14 10:24:26

Thanks hun. I didn't mean that to be a woe is me post (reading it back it sounds that way). Just wanted you to know I'm anxious too!! I have lots of good days but on the bad I feel so very alone as I feel like I need someone there to say 'he's okay!!!!'

RebeccaJames Tue 04-Feb-14 10:37:40

You are describing me, OP! I am a bundle of worries and feel it's stopping me enjoying DS2 (8 weeks). I don't remember it being this bad first time around.

I worry about whether my breast milk will run out now that I'm topping up, whether formula contains anything I should worry about, if I'm creating bad sleep habits, how to lose the baby weight when I'm running on carbs and sugar, when I can exercise, whether DS1 is watching too much TV, about the state of the world, illnesses, how I will keep my boys' attitude to the opposite sex healthy once they start seeing porn despite my best efforts... Oh my goodness, everything! Last night I asked DH whether we should use bottled water for the baby's formula to avoid excess fluoridation (answer: we should). And he said "do you Google "potential problems with babies and just I through page after page of results, looking for the next thing to worry about?!". Obv I don't but my mind doesn't stop casting about for danger.

I think worrying is part of the furniture with motherhood but some of us have a mind set where it gets out of control. I certainly do.

So I have no advice as such, but you are definitely not alone!

tidyupandeatyourgreens Tue 04-Feb-14 12:29:13

nibbysmum - don't worry it wasn't a 'woe is me' post at all!! Anxiety is awful and having experienced a whole load of crap such as depression, PND, bipolar 2 and anxiety, I don't think that any are better or worse than the other 'disorder', they are all hard to deal with! However, things that really can help (and which I do try to do but not always) are meditation, CBT, medication (sometimes just to take the edge off!), yoga, talking to friends about how I feel, trying to get support where I can (although difficult as I have no family close by and so can only rely on friends), eating a good diet, avoiding alcohol (hard!!), some exercise even if it's just walking around with the buggy which I've done a lot (with baby in it of course smile). But sometimes despite our best efforts, we have to get the help we need so going to your GP is a great idea, I have a great one and also have had a mental health worker this time which has been great.

RebeccaJames - you do sound a lot like me smile I have been mix feeding since about 2 weeks old. Breastfeeding all the time except for the 11pm bottle and then since about 5 months I've been doing 2 bottles (one at bedtime and one at 11pm) and now that she's dropped the 11pm feed, it's just a bedtime one and 2 breastfeeds in the day. I've also worried that my supply has been dropping too much and she won't be getting all the milk she needs! However, she's been weighed today and all seems well according the health visitor so it's nice to have that reassurance. I also worried about giving formula having not given as much to dd1! And you're right, the access to the internet is a big worry, one that just wasn't around when we were kids! I worry that my dd1 watches too much TV also, plays games on the tablet and on the computer and sees my DH on the computer a lot which I can't seem to be able to control! Basically, I think there's a control issue going on too - there's so much we can't control as they get older and it's trying to let go of that control somehow that's hard.....the amount of rubbish they eat at kids' parties is one and not giving too many treats which is so hard!

Oh my goodness, I know I'm not alone and it's great to hear from you....

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