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I'm a terrible mother..

(101 Posts)
shish Mon 22-Jun-09 15:51:21

Ds1 just turned 3 last week and ds2 will be 13 weeks this week. Some days (like saturday) I can be quite confident with both of them. Other days, like today, I just want to cry and I feel like everything is just wrong and I can't enjoy ds2 (or ds1!). I shouldn't complain cos ds1 is in daycare and ds2 has settled himself into a routine that fits in quite well around ds1 for the moment until he starts pre-school (far from home) in september.

So why do I feel like this?? It's really not fair on the boys to have a mummy that feels so low. I really wish I could enjoy being a mother of 2 like I did a mother of 1. I just feel like my head is all over the place and my confidence keeps dropping. I thought I would be more settled within myslef by now..

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NorthernLurker Mon 22-Jun-09 15:59:00

Having two little ones is tough! Doesn't matter what help you have or how 'good' they are.

Don't run yourself down - your boys love you and you are their world - that doesn't mean you have to be bouncy tigger super mum every single day!

I agree you should chat to your GP or HV about this - and also your partner? You may need a bit of extra support to help you feel happier right now but that doesn't mean you are failing your boys or doing anything wrong. Sometimes being a mum is harder than at other times, nothing you've done or not done - but this too shall pass.

shish Mon 22-Jun-09 19:57:08

I'm scared of speaking to the GP as I'm afraid they will diagnose pnd and put me on anti-depressents which I really don't want..

NorthernLurker Mon 22-Jun-09 20:01:58

Why don't you want anti-depressants? Medication isn't the only way to treat depression but it is an effective way if managed correctly and your GP will do that. They are NOT going to to turn you into a zombie or a drug addict. It does sound to me like you're struggling with anxiety a bit and just articulating that to somebody else may all you need to get those worry demons to back off a bit.

Chunkamatic Mon 22-Jun-09 20:06:20

But you wouldnt have to take AD's if you didn't want to, would you? I have no personal experience of PND but surely there might be a chance they could point you towards some other support isn't there?
FWIW i'm a terrible mother too today! I've come on MN to try and take my mind off all my failings! It's such hard work and a massive responsibility that it's bound to get on top of you, so try not to beat yourself up, you're human and normal and i'm sure you're a fantastic Mum, otherwise you wouldnt be bothered either way.

shish Tue 23-Jun-09 08:57:07

I'm constantly tired and stressed and it feels like things will never seem right as a family of 4. It's not fair on my family when I feel like this. Dh is very supportive, but I'm sure he's gonna get fed up of me soon.

I can remember feeling very anxious in the early months with ds1 but I thought things would be different this time and I would be able to hold it together - I have to. I have a whole host of different worries this time and I'm finding it so hard to relax at times.

shish Wed 24-Jun-09 09:02:38

weegiemum Wed 24-Jun-09 09:07:58

Speaking from experience sad if you have pnd it is best to get it diagnosed and treated. I didn't really want antidepressants either but it made me so much more functional and able to be the mummy my dc needed.

There are also self-help type things, talking therapy etc. You owe it to your fabulous dc to find out what is wrong and sort it out - it could just be that you are exhausted, and no wonder!

WowOoo Wed 24-Jun-09 09:20:33

I will be in a similar position as you in a few months time and I'm dreading it.

Ds1 who is 3 is already getting bored of me not being able to run, jump, lift him in air and give him constant attention but I'm just going to be doing my best and will prob be on MN like you!

Your little one is so little it's tough anyway.

Can only sympathise and suggest you keep focussing on when things will settle and get easier.

Life isn't fair. but I would try not to feel guilty about it. You're not doing ANYTHING that's unfair on your family. Try talking to yourself in a different way, more positively and assertively. (I'm saying this when I have been telling myself how crap I am at being able to keep on top of housework!blush

Hope you're able to get a bit of help. Could you afford a cleaner, babysitter, a day out by yourself in not to distant future etc etc.

Good luck. i'll be asking you for tips soon.

Tee2072 Wed 24-Jun-09 09:31:02

There is nothing wrong with ADs, if you need them, you should take them. And it certainly sounds like you could use a bit of help.

It probably won't even be for long that you'll be on them. Just to help you get over the 'hump', so to speak.

moosemama Wed 24-Jun-09 09:57:30

Its still really early days for you to get used to being a family of 4. Change always comes with a period of adjustment. I was the same after ds2 was born, we were so used to being a tight knit little family of 3, able to give all our attention and time to ds1 etc that it somehow just didn't feel right having to share myself out. I remember sitting and crying because I felt like I'd let ds1 down and ruined his little world and then I'd cry all over again because I felt disloyal and a terrible Mummy to ds2.

I was diagnosed with depression when ds2 was 6 months and to be honest I wished I'd got help earlier. I did go onto anti depressants, despite initially being very anti, but I also went for counselling, which I feel was the greater factor in my recovery. It was nice to just have an hour a week that completely belonged to me, when I could say anything I wanted and vent if I needed to without feeling judged. I used my weekly appointment as an excuse to put on some make-up, do my hair and dress in something other than 'Mummy' clothes as well. I felt so much better after a few weeks, I really was left wondering why I hadn't done it sooner.

I have now just had dd1 (22 weeks tomorrow) and with lots of help and support (both on and off MN) it looks as if I might be fortunate enough to avoid pnd this time around, even though going from 4 to 5 seems like a bigger jump.

Please go and see your gp and talk through your options. They will probably get you to answer a quick questionnaire to find out how low you really are and take it from there. You absolutely do not have to take ADs if you don't want to. I know some people feel there is a stigma attached, but no-one else needs to know and the end result is worth it imho. Your GP can refer you for counselling or you can go private (you can find a private therapist on the BPS website here.)

Good luck.

shish Wed 24-Jun-09 14:01:35

Thank you all for your support. I'm just really scared. I feel so low and I just want to be happy. I just keep wishing we had stuck with what we had - I'm such an evil person. It's nothing against ds2 but want to be able to feel like I can function. This morning he sicked up milk during his feed at mother and baby club and I just burst into tears.

I have all the help I dould ask for so I really shouldn't be feeling like this.

WowOoo Wed 24-Jun-09 14:09:46

I've been there. Go easy on yourself.
Great that your actually getting out and making the effort to go to mother and baby club too.

I burst into tears when a woman was very kind to me in supermarket carpark when ds1 was teeny. Go easy on yourself. You're bound to have moments of regret, but remember that when your ds's are playing happily together and you can ahve 5 mins peace that it was all worth it.....I live in hope!

moosemama Wed 24-Jun-09 14:20:13

Oh Shish, please don't be so hard on yourself. I had a really helpful Mum and lovely DH who was working from home when I had DS2 and I still got PND. Its nothing you've done or haven't done its an illness and it just needs treating that's all.

I really think you should go and see your GP asap, or if you aren't happy to do that, call your Health Visitor for a chat or to arrange a home visit, as they are also trained to help with this sort of thing and will be able to advise you.

Do you ever get to take a break from being Mum? I know your baby is only 13 weeks but think of that in terms of months and you are overdue for a break, even if its just an hour or so to either go for a walk in the sunshine, go shopping or even have a bubble bath and an early night. You might be a mum to two little ones, but you are still you and you need and deserve time to yourself every now and again. Honestly, it will help you to be a better mum.

It will get better, I promise, but you need to get some help from your GP or Health Visitor and take some time for yourself.

I know and understand exactly where you are coming from with the wishing you had stuck with one child, I've been there myself but your DSs are going to be great friends - a real little team and one day you will be watching them play and realise you can't imagine ds2 not being there. My two boys have a slightly smaller age gap, they fight like cat and dog sometimes, but they adore each other as well and are practically joined at the hip. Having a brother will be such a precious thing to your ds1, someone to share holidays and playtimes with, whisper to after lights out, someone to play board games and football with, a best friend who is always there. Try to keep this in your head and look to a happier future. It will get better, just look at me, 5 years ago I was where you are, now I have 2 gorgeous boys and a beautiful dd.

Please book that appointment or make that call.

Wishing you all the best.

shish Wed 24-Jun-09 15:56:50

Moosemama you have literally made me well up. I have just got off the phone to the doctor's but I can't get an appointment for nearly 2 weeks - which I have taken. I guess I will just have to muddle through in the meantime. I just can't wait to get to a stage when I can relax within myself. can I keep in touch with you please???

moosemama Wed 24-Jun-09 17:01:44

Shish am so glad you made the call. Ridiculous that no-one can see you for nearly two weeks. You could try speaking to your Health Visitor in the meantime though. I don't know what yours are like, mine were useless when I had ds2, but this time they have been great and will book a home visit to come and have a chat if you need one.

Of course you can keep in touch. I don't have a profile page, but am around - usually on the postnatal Jan 09 thread if you need to find me. I will keep checking back here for you as well if you like. smile

shish Wed 24-Jun-09 19:21:42

Thank you so much. I really appreciate that. It really helps to know that I'm not the only one and that you can come through the other end. That's probably one of the scariest things - not being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I'm taking ds2 to be weighed tomorrow so will see which HV is there. Some of them are more than useless - the odd one is ok. I will let you know how I get on x

shish Wed 24-Jun-09 19:23:38

WowOoo how did you come out the other end?? You've all been so kind..

moosemama Wed 24-Jun-09 19:29:30

Will check back tomorrow then Shish to see how you got on with the HV. smile

shish Thu 25-Jun-09 09:00:01

I had become so confident as a mum of 1 (although it took a few months) and just the opposite as a mum of 2. Will that confidence ever come back??

moosemama Thu 25-Jun-09 10:25:53

Yes it will. It just takes time. You are getting to know a new little person and adjusting to a new family dynamic at the moment. It will all come in time. If you take care of yourself and get yourself well the rest will follow.

I was a little bit the same when dd was first born, I couldn't imagine managing to leave the house with a baby, pushchair and two children, after all, before she arrived I had a hand for each child. But, I did get used to it. She is 23 weeks today and we have been all over the place together. Haven't attempted the bus with all 3 yet, but I will during the summer holidays if I'm not going to be stuck in the house for 6 weeks.

I think all new parents, be it a first born or subsequent child, worry and fret about how they are coping or going to cope to some extent. I just gets easier as you go along.

Good luck at baby clinic today, let me know how you get on with the HV.

shish Thu 25-Jun-09 10:37:28

I spoke to the Hv today, but she had a very long que of people waiting and there's no privacy. She says I have some ond and is going to speak to my named HV to speak to me. In the meatime I will have to muddle through until I can see my GP. I really want to snap out of this and I now realise that it may not just go away this time. I keep hitting highs and lows and they seem to go either end of the extreme. She also suggested support groups like Meet-A-Mum-Association.

Dalrymps Thu 25-Jun-09 10:50:34

shish - Glad you spoke to your HV.Is there any way your 'named' hv can get you an earlier docs app? Sometimes they can...

I had some pnd, quite late on actually. I just wanted to say, this really is not your fault! It is a very common chemical imbalance in your brain caused by the hormonal changes of pregnancy and birth.

You are a great mum, the fact you are seeking help for the illness shows that you care massively. Chin up, you will come out the other side, promise.

Oh, I would ask the go about counselling too, AD's work best along side some counselling smile

moosemama Thu 25-Jun-09 11:17:22

Shish if you haven't heard from your named HV by the end of today, call and ask to speak to her yourself. Try to arrange a home visit if you can, as you said, you need to speak to her in private.

Please don't be hard on yourself as Dairymps said, its an illness that needs treatment and absolutely not your fault in any way shape or form.

You will get highs and lows and some days will feel worse than others.

The Meet-A-Mum idea is quite a good one if you feel up to going along to one, if not I found just going for a long walk in the sunshine could lift my mood for a while.

These links might help you find somewhere or alternatively you could find support from other mums who are going through the same thing on their forums:

post natal org uk

rc psych info page and links

meet a mum

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