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Harder being a mom than I thought

(36 Posts)
Americanmom35 Mon 27-Jul-15 18:57:27

Hi there - I have a 2.5 week old and I'm finding this all so hard. She is lovely and sweet but I don't feel emotionally connected to her yet and am just so exhausted from the constant cycle of eating pooping and sleeping - I just want to be able to take a break, and climb into bed in my pajamas and sleep for 12 hours. Right now I'm so anxious when I finally get her to bed I can't always sleep and often just cry. I also don't have my mom for support as she died from cancer 4 years ago and I miss her advice and support tremendously. Does it get better? I'm scared I'm not going to be a good mom because I'm finding it all so hard when I thought you were meant to be in bliss with your newborn loving every second and feeling this bond and joy. I just want to feel happy about being a mom so I can be the best mom I can be. Anyone else go through this? Any tips?

Nolim Mon 27-Jul-15 19:02:35

Oh yeah. The first months are hell. I guess the reason humans are not extinct is because we tend to block the memories of that period.

Do you have a partner or support network that could give you a break?

violetlights Mon 27-Jul-15 19:16:07

You're a brilliant mum already, you're just right in the deep end at the mo. Such early days. The months ahead will have up and downs but it'll get easier and easier.

It took me nearly six months to really believe this squirmy screechy bundle of loveliness was actually mine! Didn't feel connected at all the first few weeks. It's totally normal. It must be nice to be one of those "I fell in love at first sight" mums but it doesn't happen to everyone. Hang in there. flowers

violetlights Mon 27-Jul-15 19:17:38

And yes, it is bloody hard work and I have no idea why no one tells us that!! We deserve medals - and cake. cake

captaincloud Mon 27-Jul-15 19:23:08

Hey, I have a 3 week old and I feel the same. So tired and I feel quite miserable and cry a lot. I don't think it's PND because I do have ok times but last night I was so tired I was shaking and almost delirious. I thought my baby was an alien!
I have no idea what I'm doing and I think I'm putting a dampener on my husbands experience of his perfect baby by crying so much.
However, I met someone yesterday who has an older baby and she doesn't know me but she looked at me and said 'it does get better you know' in such an understanding way that it really helped. I also felt that overwhelming love feeling today which has helped. My husband has had it since day 1 and I thought there was something wrong with me that I hadn't had it so much or so strongly. I think though that it is so much physically tougher for the mum that it can take a while to get over the birth etc.
I read somewhere that it gets easier at 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months and 6 months so try and hold on to that. I see people sitting in parks or walking with their kids and wonder if we will ever get to that stage.
Are you breastfeeding? I'm finding that really tough going but aiming for 6 weeks then will see.
Sorry for the long post, hope it does get easier for you soon.

Teeste Mon 27-Jul-15 19:55:11

Newborn bliss - I'm convinced it's all propaganda. DS will be 6 weeks on Wednesday and I'm bloody shattered! And that's with a very supportive DH and family, and FF. It's relentless. He's a classic Purple crier, every day from 4 or 5 to 9 or 10 he hates everything and shouts at it. Occasionally, like today, we have cranky mornings too. Then there's the growth spurts...not even thinking about teething yet!

I'm told the 3 month mark is when things might get better, so holding on to that. Other than that, do you have a partner to help? Someone who can give you a break? It's amazing what even a quick battery recharge can do.

And yes, the emotional bond will come in time. If nothing else, they start 'rewarding' you with smiles between 6 and 8 weeks apparently! Having a newborn is just immensely overwhelming, the little blighters darlings don't come with a manual and an off switch, unfortunately. You're on a learning curve, essentially, and it's a steep one. Stick with it and take a break if and when you can. You definitely need to look after yourself too!

daisydalrymple Mon 27-Jul-15 20:01:14

It really does get easier, but there are always difficulties at each stage smile you just learn to cope with them as you go. Do you have an understanding health visitor? ( they often get a bashing on here) I've found my hv a real life saver to chat about how I'm feeling.

Don't be frightened to ask for help, it is very overwhelming at the beginning, you're sleep deprived, recovering from labour and still recovering from 9months hard physical and emotional work. What you're feeling is perfectly normal at this stage, but equally it's good you're aware of this now to keep a check on your feelings incase they escalate to pnd.

I always find it helps to get out for a good walk to clear the cobwebs. And maybe try something for you in the evening, eg a bubble bath or box set, whilst DH can tend to your baby's wakings. (Run the bath straight after a feed so you know you won't be needed for a half hr!)

It really really does get better, and in the meantime accept any offers of help or visits that might make you feel yourself again and not just all baby. Congratulations xx flowers

tatumsfunkychicken Mon 27-Jul-15 20:04:22

flowers just keep going, the first six weeks are hellish, sleep deprived blur of crying, confusion, anxiety and irrational thoughts. It gets better, it gets easier and the good news is that it just kinda happens on its own, keep going and your little one will set the pace. Naps will change (and hopefully lengthen), feeding will become more regular and easier, everything slowly becomes slightly more predictable. Your mind and body will settle and regulate and eventually you'll realise one day that you aren't exhausted and overwhelmed.

Make it to six weeks, that's a massive milestone. Then at six months life will seem like a walk in the park by comparison. By the time little one turns one, you'll wonder how things ever seemed so bad.

Honestly, just one step at a time. Breaking up the day into small chunks, keep going, you're doing great.

tatumsfunkychicken Mon 27-Jul-15 20:05:55

I second that advice - reach out to HV. I inundated mine with questions and worries, they were fantastic.

museumum Mon 27-Jul-15 20:10:16

Have you got a partner? Are you sharing the load when he's home from work? I was bfing so did all the feeds including nights but my dh made our dinner and did ds bath and looked after him 8pm-12pm so I could sleep.
It does get easier but it's MUCH easier with help.

Roseybee10 Mon 27-Jul-15 20:14:58

I was one of the few who had the newborn bliss with my first baby. I was totally blissed out and on a high. Never hit the baby blues etc.

Boy did I get a shock with my second. Found it hellish for the first 8 weeks and then felt even worse because I hadn't found it as bad with first baby.

I think it was a combo of hormones and dd2 being a much harder baby. You sound like you're doing great. It's such hard work but I promise it gets easier.

Lucy61 Mon 27-Jul-15 20:20:22

Hah! The early days bliss, I'm convinced that is a myth. Those early days are tough, op. I didn't have my mums help but my friends in the 'baby group' did. It's so much harder when it's just you and dh; there is no break!

I did, however, find out (2 yrs later) that the hv can arrange for someone to come and offer you some support eg. be with baby while you have a shower, come with you if you have to run a few errands etc. They are volunteers, I think. I wish I knew about this at the time. When my dh went back to work after the 2 weeks paternity leave, I didn't even manage to get in the shower before midday, some day not at all. confused

neversleepagain Mon 27-Jul-15 20:21:31

I didn't like having newborns, I hated it in fact. I love my dc with every part of my being but there is no way I would ever have another one!

Nolim Mon 27-Jul-15 20:23:07

If nothing else, they start 'rewarding' you with smiles between 6 and 8 weeks apparently!

Yes!! It is great to receive positive feedback. As babies get older they become more interactive, more human iykwim.

ninetynineonehundred Mon 27-Jul-15 20:53:28

Bless you. This is such a hard and exhausting time and a real shock to the system .
You are having to look after the constant 24hr needs of a baby after going through the most physically demanding thing you've ever done. And you are missing your mum. It's a very bittersweet time for you flowers
No tips other than to tell you that everything you are feeling is normal and often doesn't last . If it does you haven't failed you just need to talk to your hv.
I didn't feel the love for ages after dd1 (about a month ) and slightly longer with Dd2 and we are extremely close now.
They are not damaged by the fact that I was so spaced from two hideous births.

Your baby is still a stranger to you .You only met her for the first time 2.5 weeks ago! You will both get to know each other I promise .
You are doing so much better than you think .
Congratulations on your lovely squidgy one smile

Casper27 Mon 27-Jul-15 21:23:40

I lost my mum to cancer a few years ago too & I think about her all the time. I take comfort in the fact she would be so proud of me & she would absolutely adore my little one. I sometimes say that out loud to him & give him an extra snuggle.
Congratulations on the arrival of your baby girl. Please just take one day at a time & don't stress. Every days different & you're just getting to know each other. You're body is recovering and breastfeeding is bloody tough. It did get easier for me at the end of week 3 / 4. Well done for the last 2.5wks, You're doing amazing & your mum would be so very proud of you too. Sending hugs.

polkadotdelight Mon 27-Jul-15 21:27:36

It does getter better, I promise you, just hang in there. Life will be normsl again. I have a 10 month old and now it is awesome.

BlacknWhitePanda Mon 27-Jul-15 21:31:53

When ds was a few weeks old I posted the same thing. The first couple of months are hard but it gets easier. It took until he smiled to feel any love at all in honesty. But you are a good mum and when your hormones settle and you get used to each other it gets easier

MrsNuckyThompson Mon 27-Jul-15 21:34:37

It does get easier. The first couple of weeks, up to about 2-3 months I think are super hard.

But gradually it does get easier. You will start to get a bit more sleep, your baby will take less time for each feed and your hormones will calm down. I promise it gets much much better.

FaFoutis Mon 27-Jul-15 21:35:53

Your first baby can be a massive shock, I didn't feel anything for mine for about 3 months. It got so much better after that.

My tip is walk. Put her in a sling / buggy and walk somewhere pretty every day.

ohthegoats Mon 27-Jul-15 21:41:14

My tip is also to walk. And then to come home and give in to it... watch a lot of telly, read a lot of books (buy a kindle or a tablet, it's a worthwhile investment). I think that the quicker you accept that this is 'it' for now, then the easier things are. It's horrible getting over the hurdle though - 'it' seems so bloody tedious and overwhelming.

9 months on and I have some days where I long to be able to put her in a sling, go out for a long walk with her asleep, stop for a coffee and cake while I feed her, then more walking and sleeping, followed by Pointless and an evening of cluster feeding to avoid the screaming. She won't let me do any of that now.. apart from that she loves the Pointless theme music and countdown - if we've I've had a knackering day, on it goes.

squizita Mon 27-Jul-15 21:42:23

Yes it gets better. If you really can't sleep do see the gp as it can be a sign of anxiety.

Try to go to some baby clubs/sessions ... For you more than baby. Honestly having loads of other people also tired and covered in milk spit somehow makes it less painful.

I've found it easier and easier as mine gets more like a little person with opinions etc. Several naysayers people swore it was easy when they're newborn then gets hard but for me, a robust little thing who yells along to Peppa Pig and grasps for her fruit pouch is easier to understand/placate/care for than a tiny, unfocused, sleepy new born so delicate and small.

squizita Mon 27-Jul-15 21:45:11

Goats mine let's me have Costas if she can have all the yolks out of their egg sandwich, leaving me with rocket and white in granary. wink She likes to charm passers by with her eggy, eggy face...

badg3r Mon 27-Jul-15 21:49:46

So many people feel exactly the same as you, it's completely normal!! I do also think that becoming a mum yourself makes you revisit your relationship with your own mum, and you are of course going to miss her even more at this time. I'm sure she'd be so proud of you and that you're doing a fab job. You know exactly how to be a good mum, she's already taught you.

tobee Mon 27-Jul-15 22:15:20

To paraphrase Dr Spock, you're doing better than you think. How do I know? You've managed to put a perfectly sentient message on mumsnet about how you're feeling. Most of us couldn't string two words together at that stage. Let alone work out how we were feeling. Please don't be hard on yourself. Give yourself a break. Don't forget your hormones are absolutely all over the place. You've gone through a massive physical change. You've gone through a massive mental change. Things will shake down soon and you won't remember how you thought like this.

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