What's for lunch today? Take inspiration from Mumsnetters' tried-and-tested recipes in our Top Bananas! cookbook - now under £10Find out more
Hate being alone with baby(30 Posts)
Hello all I'm looking for advice really. I have a lovely 2 month old ds i love being his mum but I find the days/nights when I'm alone the hardest, infact I'm really not enjoying it and I hate to admit it! I'm lucky that I have a husband whose working but he out the house from 730-630/45 five days a week and on sundays he sees his friends from 4-10pm. Twice a week i go to mum and baby groups which break up the day, and every day i pop ds in the sling and walkthe dog for at least two hours (ending up bf in the park!). I just can't stand being in the house alone esp when his colic starts i feel like he really hates being with me when i cant settle him.I used to paint, read and watch tv/craft but now it seems pointless and/or I can't concentrate on them long enough. I feel terrible as I'm so tired some days that I just take us both to bed and housework has started to slip. When he was first born I used to sling him and get housework/baking done, read etc but that initial energy and positivity has gone completely. Will it get better? I feel terrible as my son was so wanted after several mc and i have been looking forward to being a mum. Help!
I found exhaustion was worst at 3 months as the relentless disturbed sleep took its toll. After that Dd started sleeping for longer at night.
Housework should be the last of your worries. Get DH to do the dishes when he gets home, and Hoover/clean bathroom on the weekend. Everything else can slide.
You're effectively working a night shift and a day shift. Give yourself a break.
Do you get any time alone without your son? Does your DH look after him sometimes allowing you to go out for a couple of hours to do your own thing? (I think you need it.) E.g. you could alternate Sundays.
It is quite isolating to be alone with a baby.
My DD is 18 weeks old and when DP went back to work from paternity we had an agreement that every saturday/sunday he would "have" her so I could rest. Obviously we were together but he took over the feeds and changing, and get up with her in the morning and I could have a lie in, put my feet up or get anything done I wanted to. Doesn't really work like that now that she's a bit bigger but if I'm knackered he will get up with her still, and I can always hand her over to him if I want a bath or do something relaxing. Get DH to spend a full weekend with you? Do alternate sundays with friends for a while. Do you have any family that could take him for an afternoon or morning? MIL is always so keen to have DD, like with DP it's nice to let other people enjoy having her for a little while and it gives you a break. You can't do it all on your own you'd go mad!
I wouldn't set your expectations as high as having hobbies, I don't do any of the things I used to do unless I have a spare hour in the evening but that is part of being a parent- you do give up things you loved to do before. You can't have it both ways!
Ignore housework and whatever else until things have settled down. Concentrate on resting, maybe take him out for walks or join a relaxed baby group? I did exactly the same as you and put so much pressure on myself but you just need time to adjust and start getting the right balance of doing things and not doing anything while you get used to being a mum.
Thank you for your replies! No I don't have any time away from ds and as hubby works I feel he needs the break/lie in on the weekend. However hubby is good and will take him off me so i can shower/eat during the week just some days i feel like i could do with a whole day away just to breathe. I feel abit bad handing him to family as i feel it shows that I don't want him. I'm feeling abit pressured to keep up with housework my family visited last weekend and commented on 'the state of the place' its made me feel a little down but thank you for the reassurances - its nice to know im not alone. I wasn't expecting being a mum to be so lonely and relentless- I'm so glad that it's 2015 and I have access to mnet!
You need to find a way to get the same amount of "me" time as your DH. why does he get 6 hours to himself each weekend and all the lie ins? Why do you feel he needs more rest than you? What does he feel? You need to be splitting rest time with him. And when he gets home in the evening he needs to take over with baby so you can do something else. Even if that something else is getting on top of the housework (if it makes you feel better when the house work is sorted, it does me). Your DH may not realise how hard it is looking after baby. So he needs to try it himself.
Asking for help from family is not the same as saying you don't want the baby, or are not coping (which is exactly what went through my head with my first). If they are decent people they'd be mortified that you'd thought they'd think that of you. And get them used to helping! Because once you have more you'll need their help even more, and the novelty of your child(ren) will have worn off!
We are on dc3. DH was a huge help with our first. A total twat with our second (I'd had a shitty pregnancy, an early, refluxy baby and pnd), and has been much better with our third.
Ok, dp does not get a 6h session weekly with his mates every weekend or two weekend lie-ins for starters.
These things should be shared.
My dh does one night shift at the weekend and one lie in-same as me.
But yes it can be isolating. Sounds like you are mostly doing the right things though- look into what's going on at your local sure start centre, I know they're patchy but mine ran an "early baby days" group which was a lifesaver in terms of meeting other very local mums.
I agree that you should split the lie ins.. We each have a day and we get until 10am. Our son is nearly 4 and we keep to if religiously!
Also when my son was old enough that I could function but not really moving I used to take him to a sewing class. It was something I really enjoyed before having him and it really felt like I had a bit of me back again. He sat in a bouncy chair next to me for a couple of hours and I felt brilliant!
And amyone who wants on the state of a new mum's house can follow that wise mn saying and fuxk off to the fat side of fuxk.
Firstly, go easy on yourself. Looking after a baby is relentless. You should not be doing this by yourself.
DH and I have always done shifts at night - DH did until 12, then I'd do any further wakings and get up with him. (I do appreciate this is harder if he's waking for a feed). We each have a lie-in/rest day at the weekend, and no way would DH be spending 6 hours of his 2 days at home out with friends. He's a father now!
He takes the baby to let you eat/shower?!? How gracious of him You need to sit down with him and explain the reality of the situation. 'DP, I know you work hard and are tired, but this is what life is like for me
I am even jealous that you get to go to the toilet by yourself. We need to work out how I can get some rest before I become ill'.
I'll say it again - looking after a baby is relentless. The good news is, very shortly that little bundle of responsibility will start giggling for you, and giving you cheeky smiles whilst causing mischief, and it becomes less of a chore and more of a joy to spend time with them. Although at 7 months DS hit a stage where he'd whinge from waking for his afternoon nap at 3.30-ish until bedtime at 6-ish. We went on lots of pointless walks, and he went from 2 baths a week to at least 4.
If someone offers to take him for a couple of hours - let them! It's not about not being able to cope - you can and you are. But take some time for yourself. The more rested you are, the better mum you will be. It's hard to enjoy your baby when you're sleep deprived!
As for those family members making comments about your house - if you ever let them in again, hand them the hoover and point them in the direction of the laundry mountain and washing machine. Cheeky bleeders.
Elley you sound as though you're doing a great job. You have one lucky baby. I think you're doing more than your fair share though, I know your DH is working but your job as a full time mum 24/7 is very demanding and tiring too - you need down time as much as DH, whether it comes in the form of lie-ins, soaks in the bath or time with your friends. It's not just important for you, but it's also for your DC's benefit - you can't give your child the best of you if you're close to exhaustion. You'll never get this time back so take a break so you can enjoy it while it lasts. I know how you feel though, I can't wait for DH to come home everyday so we're not alone, I feel the pressure of having to keep him entertained lift and DS always perks up when someone else comes in, he obviously gets bored with one person for all that time! I'm past bothering about the state of the house, keeping DS happy is more important than keeping the house gorgeous and if it bothers anyone they're free to help out!
It's absolutely normal how you feel. Unfortunately modern life makes it incredibly lonely sometimes having a small baby. I felt the same even on my second one. The fact is you are exhausted so of course it's hard to enjoy normal things but I promise it will get better !
Once your baby is a young toffee crawling about then walking you will feel transformed as you will enjoy their company and they are more fun.
My advice is to be completely accepting that it is lonely and make sure every day you try to meet other adults. Find something every single day. You need friends with babies and you need to find them anyway you can.
You also need a break. Your husband is being very selfish !!! Please tell him you are struggling and are desperate for time away from the baby. It's normal to want and need a break.
Tell him that Saturday mornings or whenever..he is in charge and you are going to go and sit in a cafe with the paper ..or meet a friend. It will make you feel so much better.
You also need one lie in!! Why do you think he deserves a break and uou don't? ?
Also please tell your family that you are struggling and need help. It's very thoughtless of them not to offer you help with the housework !
I'll echo previous posters and say that your DH should be shouldering more of the burden, especially at weekends. My DS2 is 4.5months so I have very real and current experience of the kind of tiredness you are feeling. My DH works the same hours as yours, but at weekends he does his fair share. We each get a lie in, and there's no way on God's green earth that he'd ever get away with being out from 4-10 every Sunday. It's not even that I wouldn't allow it (though i wouldn't!) - he wouldn't DREAM of taking that much time out in the first place as he'd know it was grossly unfair.
Now, I'm not going to judge your DH unfairly here - it's entirely possible that he genuinely doesn't realise how hard it is for you. From his perspective, he's gone back to working FT and then helping look after a baby when he gets home too. He may well be feeling tired. What he may not understand is that you are JUST as tired as him if not more so! You need to sit him down and clearly communicate to him that spending all day looking after a newborn is like working a full time, physical job, but without the perks of a guaranteed lunch break, toilet breaks when needed, enjoying adult conversation or having time to think. Tell him that you need leisure time AT LEAST equal to his, and work out for yourselves what that will look like. If he's a decent chap he'll realise that your needs matter and will work to rectify the current imbalance. Good luck
Just to add
I was working part time in a busy and demanding job when my baby was 9 months old and working was a holiday compared to being at home ! So don't forget all the things about working life like adult company, stimulation and simply time to yourself that he is getting. A day on his own with the baby will make him see what you are going through.
I see others have posted exactly what wanted to come back and post - that so what if your DH works, so do you!! You have a full time job with no breaks, no adult company, none of the downtime or socialising that comes with most types of work. You absolutely need a break - more than him I should think - so please split your 'time off' and lie-ins much more equally.
As for your family commenting on 'the state of the place' - how dare they!! What do they think you are doing, just sitting around?
What everyone else said!
1. You and DP get one lie in each.
2. You and DP get equal time off at the weekends. Looking after a colicky baby is harder than working IMO (unless he is negotiating peace in the middle east or something)
3. Sod the housework, do the bare minimum, and anyone who criticises can be handed a mop
4. Colic is often overtiredness - is your DS getting enough sleep in the day? If not, long pram or sling walks should help and also will get you out of the house.
5. More baby groups and getting out. Whatever you can find. Ask local libraries if they have a 'rhyme time'. ask HVs about any local breastfeeding groups. Google local playgroups and one o'clock clubs. Hang out at friendly local cafes - make a coffee last. Walk in the park with buggy, you might meet someone else doing the same. Etc.
6. You are at the low point. At 10 weeks things will be a bit better, 12 weeks a bit better again and by 16 weeks your baby will be so much more fun - promise!
My DP works similar hours and every other week,or so, is our from lunchtime with his friends on Sundays so I know the feeling!
I found weeks 6-10 quite hard. The relentless breastfeeding and dd being somewhat colicky was getting to me. DP was quite reluctant to be with dd alone at that point because she always wanted to feed and he couldn't help her.
Once my dd got to 11 weeks she became much easier, mostly because the cluster feeding ended and she started feeding roughly every 3 hours. Her naps regulated and she started sleeping better at night.
At that point I 'suggested' to my DP that he bathed dd in the evenings. That way I get 20 minutes every other night to either tidy or just sit and drink a tea. I wish Id suggested it earlier!
Now on the weekend DP takes dd for a walk alone for at least an hour. One day, usually Sunday mornings he sits with her in the living room whilst I go back to sleep (if dd permits it!).
I find the hour they go for a walk so strange but I need some time away from my dd. Sometimes I just sit in front of the TV for that hour.
Ellybear, I'm in exactly the same position! DD was much wanted after a couple of miscarriages. DH is out of the house from 6.30am - 7.00/7.30pm, 9pm on a weds as he goes climbing.I feel like I achieve very little & I'm constantly shattered. The house feels like a s#!t tip (despite being lucky enough to have a cleaner for 2hrs a week) and I feel like all I do is wash, clean, change nappies & feed DD. I love her to pieces but I'd love to just have some time to myself to do something for me, the most I get nowadays is 30mibs in the bath if I'm lucky I feel like it's never going to end as DH is quite keen for be to breast feed for 6 months, I was but now she's arrived I find the prospect of that really daunting! Plus I've suffered from PND and have a HV who's constantly trying to get me to go to groups but they're all about 9am and we're never ready that early! Sorry for the rant, just wanted you to know that you're not the only one! If you're in Yorkshire let me know, I don't know many new mums & we can both chastise each other for having messy homes
I can't believe this - I had my DCs in the late 70s and believed as my DM had that DFs worked hard outside the home so I do all the baby care.
OMG - can people really believe this still? Looking after a tiny baby is the hardest job i've ever done! DH swanning off alone in the peace of the family car to the social life that is work is a walk in the park compared to 24 hour baby care.
I suppose me and my DP have a rather old fashioned set up. He works, I look after the baby and the house. That said, he cooks a lot (he cooked every night for the first 11 weeks of dds life) and will tidy up unprompted.
For us this works. I'm very much in the ' if you want something done properly do it yourself' brigade so I prefer doing the cleaning (plus I oddly find doing the laundry and ironing relaxing).
But DP enjoys looking after dd. He'll change nappies, dress her and play with her. He just can't breast feed so at this stage his ability to be alone with her for long is limited (dd is quite reluctant to take a bottle from him).
My baby is nearly 4 months and I found that everything improved a lot from where you are now at 2 months to now. I'm on my own way out in the countryside without a car and like you, the sling and dogwalking is my main outing.
I think you should show this thread to DH. I really don't think they get it until they spend at least a few hours doing what you're doing. Preferably without you in the house.
Are you bf or ff? Cos if you're bf, you should try now to introduce a bottle if you haven't already.
Hello sorry for the late reply! Thank you so so much for your replies. I've been scouring mumsnet and tbh I'm not sure if I'm suffering with pnd or I'm just down! I'm feeling low most days, and the past few weeks I've been struggling to get back to sleep during the evening- my minds constantly racing. I'm just so fed uo and today its now nearly 12 and we've just sat on the sofa the poor dogs not been walked in three days. I'm going to have to snap out of it somehow.
Until I read you mentioning he does take charge of DS for short bursts in the week, I was indignantly thinking your husband would probably say to anyone who asks, "No my life hasn't changed at all since our son was born". So he's not a completely selfish article! But he could do more. How come he thinks he can just carry on being out with his pals every Sunday for so long? It really is all hands to the deck at this stage of life.
I am glad you at least get some fresh air every day and occasionally go out to mother & baby groups. Are you seeing a HV? She may have some useful ideas regarding colic. . It's natural to feel at a loss when he doesn't settle. You don't have all the answers but who does, we all wing it from time to time.
Well making yourself snap out of something isn't easy.
But leaving the DC with your DH and meeting up with friends/ having a night out/ whatever / could make you snap out as it will show you that the world is still there and you can be part of it.
Just mooching round the shops/ library/ swimming pool etc on your own whilst DH has baby for an hour a couple or three times a week will be a start.
Hmm feeling down every day isn't normal ...but then again being lonely with a baby is also not natural in terms of how humans evolved.
Do you feel able to talk to friends family or your husband about it?
Is there a local nct coffee morning in your area or a sure start ?
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.