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Which is harder, being 8 months pg and taking care of a toddler, or having a newborn and toddler?

(55 Posts)
naturelover Thu 06-Aug-09 20:31:21

I'm hoping the former is harder, because I'm really struggling!

I'm a SAHM with no real help with DD Mon-Fri, and 3 weeks after the baby is born I can realistically expect to be completely alone Mon-Fri with TWO to take care of. I admit I'm daunted.

Right now I've reached the point of looking forward to not being pregnant anymore (nature's way I suppose of making us look forward to the birth). I have a sore back, feel enormous, have piles, restless legs, can't sleep and just generally find it bloody EXHAUSTING running around after a two year old! To think that last time, I had a month off work before the birth to rest and nest. This time I'll be lucky if I get a half-day respite from DD in the next month...

Sorry for the moan. Am hoping others are in the same situation so we can give each other moral support.

PS any tips on managing with a newborn and toddler would be much appreciated!

Laugs Thu 06-Aug-09 20:36:22

No advice, but I'm hoping it's the former too. smile

RhinestoneCowgirl Thu 06-Aug-09 20:38:39

Although the first couple of months are a bit of a fuzzy blur now - I'd say it was definitely harder being heavily pg with a toddler than after no2 was born. DD is now 7 months and things are pretty good.

I was in same position, back in the old todder group circuit with DS when DD was 3 weeks old. A good sling helps!

Breizhette Thu 06-Aug-09 20:40:33

I found it harder after the birth, sorry. DD was 18 months when DS was born and the first year was hardcore.

mrsgboring Thu 06-Aug-09 20:41:27

pg i8s horrific. you'llbe fine

puddinggirl Thu 06-Aug-09 20:41:49


DS1 3yrs DS2 3 weeks. I would say I am probably just as tired now as at your stage, but it is different. Its great not being pregnant but its amazing how it all comes rushing back about how full on looking after a newborn is. However it will be easier this time around as you know what you are doing.

The biggest difference between now and being heavily pg is that the days and weeks go sooo fast, compared to the treading through treacle that is the last few weeks before the birth.

Also it is lovely having a little baby and finally getting to meet him etc, so overall, though just as tiring, I would say more enjoyable. Plus getting nearer to the holy grail of sleeping through the night as every day passes!!!

Hope you can have some fun times with your LO before baby arrives

Best of luck grin
Puds x

hellymelly Thu 06-Aug-09 20:42:11

I found it easier afterwards.Aside from juggling the needs of the two of them!

mummypig Thu 06-Aug-09 20:43:55

I found it much harder afterwards, although one bonus was that it was easier to walk around.

tulip27 Thu 06-Aug-09 20:45:06

I had 14 months between my two and my dh went back to work a week later, no family near by and my dh refused to help at night. It was a lot harder when dd was born (sorry) so all I can advise is plan well ahead. I made my lunch the night before and put it in the fridge so that if I had 5 mins the next day for lunch it was ready to eat,I limited to no iron outfits, changing bag always ready, made a plan of 14 meals that I could cook with minimal preparation and rotated them. Activities for the toddler play dough, drawing,painting, anything which I could help one handed with. Oh and join lots of toddler groups. I would carry dd in a sling and play with ds whilst making friends and not having to worry about the mess I would have to clear up if ds was playing at home.

It is tough to start with but now they are 3 and 4 they are the best of friends and I now feel redundant most of the time as they play together so beautifully.

llynnnn Thu 06-Aug-09 20:46:52

I feel for you I have a 3 year old (just) and a 7 week old dd, and i can honestly say that being pg with a toddler is harder in my experience!

even with the sleepless nights i have found it easier than the exhaustion of being pregnant.

dont get me wrong there are times when i dont know which way to turn first, but in general i have found it easier than i thought it would be.

i have just been showering dd1 with loads of attention so she doesnt feel left out. When baby doesnt NEED attention she has been happy to sit in her bouncy chair etc and already is happy watching her sister playing. i do feel a little guilty sometimes that dd2 doesnt get as much attetion but she is perfectly happy and gets lots of attention in the evenings when dd1 is asleep.

i have also been allowing dd1 to 'help' as much as she can and really tried not to keep saying no to her all the time, even when she gets a little heavy handed! also cbeebies has really helped a lot too!!

i hope everything goes well for you

tassisssss Thu 06-Aug-09 20:50:29

for me it was definately easier once the baby was born! i'm also a SAHM, dd was 20months when dd2 was born (and my ds was 5). I found it really really hard being in the late stages of pregnancy with a toddler. Even thinking about it I could cry! I had mild SPD but was just so sore around the hips and even stooping to pick stuff off the floor (let alone picking up dd) was such an effort. And then my precious baby was born and I instantly felt physically well and was absolutely "loved up" (apologies to those who hate the expression). Now I was only tired, and I can live with that.

Good luck!

babybugs Thu 06-Aug-09 20:56:12

got to say this makes me feel better, I am37 weeks pg and have 2yr ds and have been panicing over what I am going to do once baby is born. I am so tired all the time and feel really guilty bc cannot sit on floor to play or run round after ds ( really bad spd ) nice to know am not the only one!

katendmom Thu 06-Aug-09 21:28:14

Oh you're SO not the only one! I am 7 1/2 month along with a 3 1/2 year old who goes to daycare full time and I am still tired! I give all of you SAHM all the credit in the world! You're heroes in my book! I also had a horrid morning sickness this time around... so given all the experiences... I just cannot imagine that having a toddler and a newborn will be worse than this grin I just sure hope to God he doesn't prove me wrong shock

babybugs Thu 06-Aug-09 22:15:48

thanks katenmom! Have only just started posting and am overcome with support from fellow mn x

Toppy Thu 06-Aug-09 23:41:01

Naturelover - I could have written your post. Am also SAHM with no help, am around 8 months with 18mo DS and am hating this pregnancy. I have all your niggles and the restless legs have kept me awake every night until 3am since around 28 weeks. I sometimes imagine I might get more sleep even breastfeeding a newborn ! I can't wait for her to be out but am slightly in denial about the reality of having 2 to manage and no help. DS is on waiting list for a nursery place which is moving nowhere fast. These posts have been quite reassuring so I will be watching with interest.

Peabody Fri 07-Aug-09 00:11:02

I definitely found it easier once the baby was born. I got more sleep with a newborn than when I was pregnant, and it was SO much easier for me dealing with a toddler and a baby outside of my body than dealing with a toddler whilst heavily pregnant.

Seriously. Once the baby was born everything became so easy.

hmc Fri 07-Aug-09 00:18:06

I found the latter much much harder

hmc Fri 07-Aug-09 00:19:28

Breizheite and mummypig seem to agree.....

ready2pop Fri 07-Aug-09 07:51:52

I'm in the same boat here too. DS is a very active 17 month old and I am 36 weeks with number 2. SAHM and DH works really long hours so am on my own pretty much all the time.

I loved being preggers last time but have struggled all the way through this time. Finding it very difficult to deal with the heat especially.

I've been too afraid to think about how hard actually dealing with a baby and toddler might be so am reassured to see some of your posts.

HuffySpice Fri 07-Aug-09 08:11:05

I found being pregnant with a toddler impossibly hard. It really was dreadful. My sympathies.

Having a toddler and a newborn was a breeze in comparison. I am also a SAHM and had no help at all. Everyone's experience is different, but I know which I preferred. I even slept better once the baby was born - he wasn't a particularly great sleeper, but at least in between feeds I was comfortable and could get an hour or so of sleep at a time. I just mostly ignored the new baby except for feeds and cuddles, and got on with looking after my toddler with the baby sleeping in the pram or in a sling, wherever we were.

Good luck!

WoTmania Fri 07-Aug-09 08:13:01

Things get so much better once the baby is born I promise.

girlsyearapart Fri 07-Aug-09 08:27:39

dd1 was only just 1 when dd2 was born and wasn't walking so I had to carry her whilst heavily pregnant. Definitely better once baby is born. Hectic but good but then I'm not one of life's shiny happy pregnant people! Good luck you'll be fine. Thread a while ago about having close age gaps and there was loads of good advice see if you can find it. There's always someone willing to watch your toddler/cuddle your newborn at playgroups so get out if you can to some of them.

WoTmania Fri 07-Aug-09 08:50:31

Oh, and, do you have a sling and do you/would you consider cosleeping? I found these invaluable. I had a 17 month gap and DS1 was a 5am(or earlier) riser cosleeping meant I got a little more sleep and the sling made things nice and handsfree.

RFCMummy Fri 07-Aug-09 12:40:32

Definitely better when baby arrives!!! I have 3.5 dd, 2 yr dd and dc3 is due October. I am hating pregnancy, being slower on my feet, tired all the time etc. Roll on arrival of baby when you can start to build a life rather than spending your time waiting for baby to come

naturelover Fri 07-Aug-09 13:05:08

Thanks for all the replies. It's good to know I'm not alone.

I didn't and don't co-sleep with DD so would worry that she'd be jealous if I co-slept with DC2 - this is my main reason for not planning to. Although obviously I'll be sleeping alongside DC2 in the early months while bf at night etc.

I should probably investigate slings. I used a Bjorn with DD but not for long as she got too heavy and I already have back problems. But I think other slings might be better for my back.

My main concern with two is tea-bath-bedtime. Lots of friends have advised me to keep toddler's routine as normal as possible. But if DC2 is like DD and has her hellish colic "hour" between 5 and 7pm, it will be challenging to feed, bath and put toddler to bed during that time! Fortunately DD outgrew the colic by 3 months as most babies do, but while she was in that phase you could set your clock by her! For two hours a day I just had to hold/rock/sing/feed/swaddle etc to calm her. I'm pretty worried that the new baby will need the same and I won't be able to give DD the time/attention she needs before bed. I'm not too worried about the baby being bathed or put to bed by a specific time by the way, I'm inclined to follow his/her lead and bf on demand in the early days.

Any advice/experience would be very welcome!

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