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In a dark place :-((78 Posts)
Baby cries on and off all day. He has a few brief happy patches but mostly he cries and grizzles. He's 3months. This morning he screamed for 4hours without a break, after the first hour I was sobbing too. I get so angry and frustrated and desperate. Think it was reflux/colic as he kept vomiting curdled milk. I walked round the house with him in sling until my back hurt, cuddled him, rocked him, bathed him, fed him, tried to put him in cot, changed nappyx3, nothing worked he was just screaming and thrashing and scratching me and headbutting. I got scared as he cried so hard he started coughing. It's the same in evenings, hours of screaming and crying (GP said its colic/reflux but meds haven't helped). Everyone said it would improve by 3months but it hasn't.
I love DS intensely but get so upset with the endless crying. DH works long hours isn't home till around 8pm.
I try to get out every other day as he likes being in sling and usually sleeps when we're out, but it takes so long to get ready we often stay in. When he's crying I can't eat/shower/get ready/dress him and all the baby groups are in morning.
My NCT group are great but I put on a brace face and they assume I'm coping. I always dress nicely and wear make-up to go out but inside I feel like I'm at breaking point.
DH helps a bit in evenings but he has a very stressful tiring job so I try not to burden him or thrust crying baby on him straight away. I have little energy to cook so he gets ready-meals for dinner most nights.
DH says he needs home to be his 'happy place' which I understand but I'm struggling to make it a happy place and cry all the time. He always helps if asked but I feel bad asking him and feel like I should be coping. He thinks he does 'more than most dads' though he doesn't know any other dads so nothing to compare. He says I'm a SAHP while on Mat leave and therefore my job is not just caring for baby but running the household and looking after him. I so want to be a good wife and mother but feel like I'm failing. I can never get on top of housework or laundry and he has to do his own ironing and always runs out of clean shirts because I have a back-log of baby stuff. Even the Xmas decorating is half finished.
My back hurts all the time and I feel sick every eve.
DH will take DS to give me a break but I feel I have to take him back when he cries as DH has been at work all day. I think he thinks I have a great life as he comments how he would love to go to baby yoga and meet up with friends for coffee.
Please tell me it will get easier soon? Everyone said 3months is the turning point but I feel like it's just getting harder :-(
Sorry for the rant.
I think the problem is your DH and his attitude. You poor thing, you need understanding and support and you're not getting it. Do not feel guilty about needing a break; give baby to DH and go out, for a walk or whatever you feel like. You are both parents and both responsible for your baby.
And talk to people, don't bottle it up and put a brave face on. Try and get out to baby groups that feel right for you, or get out for a walk every day rather than every other day.
I think you should ask your husband if he reckons home should be your happy place as well, or just his? It sounds like he definitely isn't pulling his weight, I've done both and working is much easier than being at home with a difficult baby (unless you're a paramedic or something, comparing with office jobs here).
Does any man you know have slightly older kids, so he could have a chat with your DH and give him a reality check (you don't get a fucking housewife package with the baby)?
Could you break down the hours you're 'on' vs. him, and compare?
I had a non-sleeping baby and it was bloody tough (and she was happy most of the time, so no added stress from the crying). I would have cracked if I hadn't been in it with my husband.
You need a break. And your DH needs a kick up the arse
Now in an ideal world where a baby doesn't have colic or reflux, the odd parent on maternity leave might manage to keep the house in order and cook lovely meals. But this is vanishing rare with a young baby in the house and you are not a house elf - you are caring for a tiny baby who is very unsettled at the moment.
Quite frankly, it doesn't matter what job he does - he does not get to decree that home is his "happy place" and in doing so completely ignore the fact that you are at breaking point.
Because no, he doesn't do more than most dads. Because most dads I know with young babies (especially those whose babies have colic or reflux) come home, take the baby, do as much of bathtime and bedtime as they can (depending on breastfeeding), and help with the dinner and the housework.
He needs a day at home alone with your son to see how unsettled he is at the moment.
There's not much else you can do during the day. What you can do is take a bit of time to yourself in the evenings and weekends and leave your DH to look after the baby for a while. After all, the baby has two parents.
It sounds really hard and I remember this time well. I'm a couple of months further on and promise that it does get better - really. I would echo the advice of the pp who said to open up to your NCT mates - in our case sharing the difficult feelings is what brought us closer as a group. It sounds like you really need the support and you may be surprised by how much others are going through the same thing. Would also suggest talking to your HV. They are usually quite kind ladies and have information re other sources of support. Your DH needs to adjust his expectations, but you don't have control over what he thinks and he's adjusting too. Try not let him get to you.
I found regular exercise, hot showers, making sure I ate a big protein heavy lunch and dancing with my baby to music I liked really helped. Basic Pilates exercises and stretches which can done lying on the floor next to your baby help with the back pain. There is a blog called balanced life which has fab free videos.
Flowers and coffee emojis.
Oh that sounds so hard... and more than a bit familiar
My DS spent the first 4 months of his life unhappy. No medical issues, just a bit of a grumpy bum. I spent many a day in tears thinking "what have I done, why did I think I could manage this" etc etc. But it does get better, it really does. My DS literally just woke up one day and was in a good mood - and it stuck ( bar the odd epic tantrum that we get now ).
As for your DH, he needs to realise that its "maternity" leave not "wait on your husband hand and foot" leave. Its for you to spend time caring for and bonding with your baby.
So you're on duty 24/7 with a baby while DH works office hours and nothing much more? Ha!
In SAHM, the M is for MUM, not MAID. Your job right now is looking after the baby - making sure she is fed, kept warm and bathed occasionally. That's a full time job with a healthy bub, let alone one who has reflux or colic. Anything, housework for parenting, after DH gets home should be split 50/50. Otherwise when do you get a break?? And DH doesn't have the opportunity to bond with the baby either.
As for your bubba, I'm sorry the two of you are having a rough time. Have you looked into food intolerances? My SIL had troubles like this with her DD and eventually they discovered she is highly allergic to dairy. She ended up needing a special formula, as even SIL cutting dairy from her diet wasn't enough. She also spent hours and hours and hours each day screaming, couldn't eat and very, very unsettled. Maybe ask your GP if you can get a paed or allergist referral?
I'm sorry you're feeling so down
Your DH is not being fair or reasonable. Your only job at the moment is looking after the baby. That's a full time job. The rest of the household stuff should be done between you where you can, with most of it being done by your DH.
My DH does his own washing. He doesn't like ironing so he buys non-iron shirts and hangs them as soon as they're washed. He organizes the dry cleaning of his suits. He does as much of the other household stuff as I do when he's not at work.
Your DHs attitude is so wrong. I think you need to have a long conversation with him about fairness. Where is your happy place and your time off? Why are you doing a full time job (looking after a small baby) AND doing all the household things as well?
And yes, open up to your friends. I bet many will be trying to cope with the same things you are and are just putting on a brave face for the public. But equally some may be fortunate to have more settled babies and could help - one of our NCT group felt in a similar position to you, and several of us went to their house and minded the baby, once it had been fed, for an hour or so while mum just walked to the shop or had a lie down.
Agree with all of the above.
It is so so soul destroying to care for a crying baby all day. You sound like you're doing your absolute best and I guarantee no one else with a high needs baby is magically gliding around cleaning and whipping up gourmet meals for their OH.
PPs are right- your DH is not pulling his weight. Being a SAHP while on maternity leave means your job WHILE DP IS AT HIS JOB is to parent your baby. That's the P part of SAHP. There is no M for maid in there. If you and DC are alive and reasonably well by the time he gets home then you've done a brilliant job.
Any work thereafter is shared- so he should take the baby to give you a mental health break while you make a cup of tea for example. Then he could get dinner ready while you feed DC. Once baby is asleep one of you tidies the kitchen while the other sorts the washing out.
When one of you gets to finally sit down it should be because the house is ticking over and it's time for you both to sit down.
The mat leave months are a time when things run on an emergency cover basis. Urgent stuff gets done as and when and the priority is happy baby (as much as possible) and happy (if exhausted) mum.
Your DP needs to step up.
You are picking up his slack big time.
Oh, you poor love! You sound emotionally and physically exhausted.
I agree with pps that your DH needs a reality check
and a kick up the backside What he should be doing is coming home and taking baby so you can have a few minutes to breathe. I used to go for a run/walk when DH came home from work so I could have an hour to myself without having a baby clinging to me. If the baby (babies) cried, he had to deal with it. He has a stressful job too but it's just about being a Dad and a supportive husband.
As for his laundry, your DH is a grown adult. He can do his own laundry! Alternatively, take the shirts out and get them cleaned and ironed. It's really quite affordable and takes one more stress out of your life. DH drops his own and picks them up on the way home.
As an aside, keep an eye on how you are feeling emotionally. if you are remotely worried that you're suffering from PND, go and see your GP and get some help. It will make the world of difference.
Thanks for replies, I cried reading them. Was feeling so lonely and inadequate but you've made me feel much more normal.
I know DH finds it hard coping with work and parenthood. He doesn't understand how hard my days are and when I try to explain we end up rowing. He wants me to be happy and calm when he gets in, create a good atmosphere at home etc so he can relax after work, so when I'm crying he gets frustrated and tells me to 'be positive'. He genuinely thinks he helps more than most dads! He manages all finances/bills and does food-shop which he says is usually done by the SAHP.
It annoys me that he doesn't have to get home at 8pm, he could be home by 6pm if he wanted as he can start/finish when he wants. Most of his colleagues do 9-5 but he chooses to work 11-7 so he can sleep-in (he likes staying up late). I do all the feeds etc in night he just likes staying up late watching films. So it's a long long day for me.
How do I get him to help more without causing a massive row? Can't cope with anymore stress or a fall-out at present.
Aaaargh I'm so angry and frustrated on your behalf. Ffs he's acting like a spoilt lazy teenager, not a husband and father. If he's like this now you really need to think about what you can do about it.
Honestly your baby is the least of your problems (I'm not minimising the stress of dealing with a high need baby though)
My ds was very hard work. From around 12 weeks it started to get a bit easier. My dh never expected me to clean during the day. When he came in he was given ds and I would cook. Yes ds would cry often hysterically but I needed a break. This image might be helpful! Even if happy children doesn't feel possible now!
Get your DH to take some leave and be sole carer for a fortnight, whilst you lie in every day and get home late. Then he can see what it is like.
My baby was like this and my dh wasn't such a self indulgent twat. It is not your job to make 'his' home a happy place. It is both your jobs to support each other through better and worse. You are having a worse' and he needs to help.
Your dh needs to follow rule five, ' harden the fuck up',
When do you get a lie in OP?
Just read your update on dh working hours. That is not right. You need to have a serious conversation especially if you plan on going back to work after mat leave. His life needs to change now you have a child. My dh found this hard to accept work wise. If he wants to start late he gets the morning with ds not to lie in!
You also need to get a referral to a paediatrician. They can give you stronger meds for baby. My son had dairy intolerance and didn't improve till it was removed from his diet. You can get prescribed a special formula for this.
Your DH is right - while you are at home, you are a SAHP
That is a stay at home PARENT
PARENT = carer for baby and baby's needs. Baby needs a clean(ish) kitchen with basic levels of hygeine. Anything else isn't in your job description.
If precious hubbykins wants a "happy place" to come home to, tell him to put his hands in his pocket and hire a cleaner - hopefully his stressful job is well paid (or he needs to get a new one).
Oh and he can look after himself - because you are not HIS parent!
That aside, a crying baby is enough to send anyone over the edge. You need to make more noise about this - don't be fobbed off with reflux/wind. Quite aside from the fact that you need some respite, you need to be sure that there isn't a problem with baby. I have heard people on here talking about cranial-osteopathy working wonders on babies that cry and nothing else has worked.
It very much sounds like your DH needs to grow up
Order a baby swing. Seriously - I had twins and remember ordering one in tears for DS praying he would like it and stop crying and it was a lifesaver one like this + Batteries next day delivery. It might be the best money you've spent! Choose one with different seat positions so you can keep him more upright if he's colic prone and with multiple speed settings - be prepared to be amazed how fast they like it swinging!
Really hope it works for you x
Can I just say you sound like a really nice woman ( not like me ) and it sounds like he is taking advantage of the fact that you don't like confrontation.
Just ask him plain and simple - why do you get to only work 40 hours a week when I'm expected to do 24 hours a day 7 days a week? Do you see that as a fair division of time? Did I cease to be a human who deserves a break once I gave birth? Or do you just think that as I'm a woman my role is to serve your needs?
TBH his attitude is horribly old fashioned - he wants a calm atmosphere at home? Then stop acting like a teenager staying up watching films and dossing in bed in the morning and start actively participating in family life and things will be calmer.
Being married/having children is supposed to be about team work and supporting each other - he needs to realise this and fast.
Have some and and look after yourself. You are still a person, as well as a mother, and your well being is just as important as your DHs.
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