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Love my son but missing my old life before motherhood

(14 Posts)
kaykeets Mon 29-Sep-14 19:10:02

I have a beautiful baby boy. He is now 2 years old. I love him whole-heartedly and would never be able to live without him, but sometimes I wish I could just run away. I wasn't ready when I found out I was pregnant at 24. I just graduated university (actually gave birth 2 days after graduating). I was excited to finally have my own time but my boyfriend (now fiance) believed having this child was best. Its been two years and I do love my son, but I'm still unhappy. I miss my old life so much. I miss seeing my friends when I please, just having time to be lazy and do nothing. My fiance is helpful in some areas but overall, he works odd hours and it's always my son and me. I work full-time and fiance works every weekend so there's no family time and limited "ME" time unless I plan with my mother or fiance mother.

I guess I'm seeking reassurance. I'm scared that this gloomy feeling doesn't go away. And to be quite honest, I'm unhappy with my fiance. I've debated leaving him for almost a year but the fear of being a single mom is even more crippling of an idea than anything else. I'm not in a happy and loving relationship so I assumed that had something to do with the feeling of missing my old life? I have no idea but I never thought I would feel this way when having a child. I always wanted children and wanted to be a mother. And now that I am a mother, I miss everything I had-especially my freedom.

sad I just want to know I'm not alone in this battle. I do everything for my son but I just can't help feeling down.

prettywhiteguitar Mon 29-Sep-14 20:02:34

I honestly think this has a lot to do with your relationship, you don't share that family time together which makes being a family fun.

I would post this in relationships and you will get some great advice.

Sorry for the rushed post, children in and out of bed !! Will post more in a bit

morethanpotatoprints Mon 29-Sep-14 20:07:53

I think you need to look at your work /life balance and feel its nothing to do with having a child.
I have always done what I wanted to through 3 dc, sometimes the impossible is just put on the back burner for a while.
You obviously don't want to be with your fiance but are staying because you don't want to be a single mom, this is your problem.
I never understand when people talk about freedom, what do you mean? Freedom from what?

kaykeets Mon 29-Sep-14 20:37:56

The idea of "freedom" is quite generic. From my own experience, it's the idea of being able to pick up and just go grab a coffee with a friend or spend a day to myself or have the ability to make last minute plans. Everything right now has to be planned in advance and has been for a while. Guess I miss the "spur of the moment" kind of days/events.

DIYandEatCake Tue 30-Sep-14 00:20:46

I understand what you mean. I dream about getting up at 10 at the weekend, doing a bit of leisurely clothes shopping, going out for a child-free meal... I just try to keep a long-term view that in a few years (I have a 3yo and a 9mo) I'll be able to do some of those things again, it's just a temporary thing.
Do you feel like you've just lost the connection with your fiancé, or are there deeper issues? Babies can put a real strain on a relationship, and it sounds like you don't get much time together to really talk and remember why you fell in love in the first place. How do you think your fiance's feeling about your relationship and about fatherhood? Have you talked about how you feel with him (maybe not the leaving bit...)
As your son gets older, it'll get less demanding and you might get moments of feeling almost human again. Last week I took my two to soft play, baby was asleep, 3yo ran off to play by herself, and I drank a cup of coffee while it was still warm, and read a magazine (well, for 10 minutes til ds woke up but it was such a good ten minutes!).
You're not alone in having the feelings you have, but it sounds like you and your fiancé need a real good heart-to-heart about how things are and how you want the future to be.

DIYandEatCake Tue 30-Sep-14 00:25:57

Oh and you can do 'spur of the moment' still with a toddler. Some of our best days have been like that. Take him on a train or bus somewhere, have lunch in a cafe, go see somewhere you might both enjoy.

minipie Tue 30-Sep-14 12:59:00

I think a lot of this boils down to your and your fiance's hours. Is there any chance he can change to a job with more normal hours so you can see each other at the weekends and also so that each of you can get a break from DS and do something by yourself? It's very tough looking after a baby/toddler with not even an hour off at the weekend and IMO this is something he should change if he possibly can if he wants to have a good family relationship. Appreciate however that it may not be that easy.

Freedom - well that's something all parents lose to a large extent, but for you it's worse because you don't even get that hour off at the weekend.

Your son is 2 - that means it's not long until he will start to be a bit more independent and you can get a bit more freedom (not as much as before - but more than you have now). At some point he would be able to do activities without you at the weekend (if you have the money...) and you will get some time to yourself that way.

I would say don't make decisions about your fiance right now. It may be that your dissatisfaction (which is totally understandable) with life in general is being focused on him, and when your DS becomes more independent, you will feel happier with your relationship too. Or if DF can sort his hours that would also help.

Thurlow Tue 30-Sep-14 13:15:06

It sounds like there are 2 things going on here.

The first is the lack of freedom to do things spur of the moment. I actually think this is quite normal, particularly if you don't have a partner who is in most evenings and weekends so you have to pretty much double-plan everything you want to do. It means you do a lot of solo parenting. It's difficult.

I get what minipie is saying about changing things but it's not that easy. We do it, both working f/t and doing different shifts, and it's fucking hard sometimes. I can get very resentful of other friends who can just do things at the weekend, or go out in the evening, because there OH works sociable hours. I really do understand what you are talking about there. Every now and again it gets to me and I feel rubbish for a while because it's hard work.

BUT it very much does seem to tie in with your second problem, your fiance.

I can say, working from a very similar set up to you, that while I find it hard to have very little time where I'm neither working nor being mum, while I find it hard that I don't see my OH as much as I want to - I don't mind, because I am happy with him, so we make it work.

It sounds like you aren't in love with him any more. You say you're "not happy". Coming from a similar perspective, I can say that isn't how I feel about my OH purely because of the hours and the difficulties of tag-team parenting. It sounds, very simply, that you aren't in love with him any more.

I agree with some of the comments above that as your son gets older you will gradually start to get a little time back. I'm lazy; if I have DD alone all weekend then one day she gets a film on and I just lie on the sofa with her a read a book, rather than doing housework. Also at nearing 3 she is old enough to go off and explore on her own at soft play, and at 9am on a Saturday morning ours is just quiet enough to sit and enjoy a coffee alone. It's not much, but you have to grab what you can! And then as he gets even older, there will be playdates with friends to consider where you might be able to leave him for a few hours.

It sounds like you need a good bit of "me" time very soon to try and start sorting yourself out. If your OH works at weekends, does that mean he's off during the week? Can you book a day off work and go and visit a friend because your OH can look after your DS for two days? Or as your mum or MIL to have an overnight so you can get some time alone?

kaykeets Tue 30-Sep-14 13:53:50

Thank you everyone for the input...

Yes I agree with almost each of your points. Problem is I resent my fiance for not being more attentive and not havig a normal job and as a result, I believe it causes me to resent my life as a parent in certain moments. Yes he is home twice a week during the week. Generally I can get some time to myself then so it's not so much the time alone that I'm lacking. I'm truly missing that "family" feeling. With my fiance gone most of the time, I feel trapped at times. I have to depend on my mother or my fiances mother to watch my son.

And you're right Thurlow, I believe I have fallen out of love. It's been evident for a long time but I keep hanging on to some hope that it will get better or things will change as our son gets older. It's an odd feeling some days. I'm almost resentful at the fact that things didn't turn out the way I planned. I know how ridiculous that sounds and maybe even selfish, but I pictured a happy home when I envisioned having children. I spend most days crying because my fiance just doesn't seem to understand at all. He was not very supportive throughout my pregnancy and yet he's the one who truly pushed for having a child. I don't regret having my baby, I really don't. I just feel alone a lot of the time and seeing all my friends enjoying their late 20s just makes me feel worse. I think if I was genuinely happy with my fiance, I wouldn't feel such confusion about becoming a mother? I guess that's what I assume.

It's just all been a lot harder than I imagined. Every mother I spoke to before I had my son praised motherhood and how much she loves her children. No one really told me how alone it can make you feel sometimes. I knew very well I'd lose some freedom and time to myself and spur of the moment days, but I guess I assumed I would be accepting of that. Seems I'm not. And I feel SO GUILTY for feeling this way. My son is such a beautiful young boy and he's so sweet and yet I feel so down sometimes.

Thank you everyone for your input. It's helping to talk about this out loud. I come from a very European family so this is not a topic I can discuss with my family (my mother was raised with the mentality that women stay home and raise their children and don't complain about it basically).

violetlights Tue 30-Sep-14 14:13:12

Oh geez... I feel the way you do at the moment and I don't even have the excuse of a crappy relationship. My son's 2 yo as well - and although he is everything everything everything to me, I just want to build a time machine and have two weeks of my old life back. And go and lie in a beach and think of nothing. To not have to think about every mealtime, negotiate every nappy change. I'm pregnant and TIRED. And although my DP is amazing, I'm still lonely. Friends and family very rarely visit and when they do it's not to help. Doubtless with some babies and toddlers you can continue your lifestyle to a certain extent - but not mine. He hates eating and isn't a good sleeper. Restaurants, cafés, museums etc just aren't the relaxing places they used to be. It will get better I'm sure but I've lost sight of who I am and what I'm all about. Sorry for the moan but just wanted to say you're not alone. Not today at least.... thanks

kaykeets Tue 30-Sep-14 14:38:23

Violetlights, thank you for that. It's a huge relief to know I'm not the only one who feels this way sometimes. It's exhausting almost always. I've imagined having a week off to just relax on a beach and then reality sets in that the idea is not possible (for many more years at least). It's hard and the only thing I hang on to some days is the hope that it will get easier and feel better with time

violetlights Tue 30-Sep-14 19:51:26

Glad I'm not alone in feeling this too kay. I know some people don't find it exhausting but I do. We'll get our week on the beach one day, and it'll be brill! My sister said to me once, if you're doing parenting right it's nearly always exhausting. So at least hang onto that! And I hope it gets better with your DP too.... Hey look... I found a tardis emoticon. Pack your swimsuit and I'll pick you up yesterday! tardis

iPaddy Tue 30-Sep-14 20:00:52

I felt like this and my DH was faultless in his support of me.

Small children are lovely but it can be boring and tiresome to be constantly at the beck and call to one.

There's nothing wrong with you to feel like this.

Lindz24 Sun 26-Feb-17 16:02:01

Just reading this from almost 3 years ago and am wondering how people are feeling now? My LG is 6 months and I've just had this conversation with my oh. I miss everything about my old life and wonder if I made the right decision. I love her dearly and actually wouldn't change her at all (despite her crying and neediness). I fell pregnant early on, we aren't yet living together and I'm due to return to work soon. I suspect I'll not return, despite it being an amazing job opportunity. I also need to make a decision about living arrangements but feel my life is over as it's no longer mine. What decisions did you all make (those that felt the same) and how are things for you now?

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