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to feel miffed at friend with new baby

(177 Posts)
DonnaHayward Thu 13-Jun-13 00:18:57

I have namechanged (even though I'm not a prolific poster) because I know AIBU, and I'm ashamed to be feeling this way. I'm hoping MN can talk a bit of sense into me. Apologies for long post.

My BF and I have known each other since school, been close for 15 years, she's one of my favourite people in the world. We've supported each other through a lot of things. She had her first baby, a little boy, in Sept. I am afraid I've started to feel resentful about how our relationship has changed since her DS was born blush.

In the first few months, I was totally sympathetic to how much her life had changed, and tried to be both supportive and unobtrusive. Went to visit when invited, trying to make sure she knew I was always available with practical help without being demanding of her time etc., and completely happy to fit everything around her and her new DS. My problem is, I still feel like this is expected 9 months on, and I'm starting to get a bit fed up.

Her DS has routine which means she can't do anything after 6pm, including having people other than her and her DH in the house (as it is their family bonding time). I think this it lovely that they prioritise this, but must admit that it rules out almost all social activity, and is getting on my nerves now DS is 9 months old and not a tiny baby. My only opportunity to see them is weekend afternoons (I work FT), and with weekends being busy for both of us this means I've only seen her half a dozen times since DS arrived, always in or around their home.

I totally know, in this stage of her life, DS and DH come first, but I think what's upset me enough to post here is birthday plans. We are both 30 this year, and idly chatted lots in our 20s about having a big joint event. Obviously that couldn't happen in the way we'd fantasised when younger. She was unable to come to my birthday meal last month, as she can't be apart from DS in the evenings. Hers is in August, and plan is for a group of friends to get together in the park so 'we can all spend time with DS'.

Childish bit now - I want to say 'I'm not that fussed about time with DS, I want to hang out with you!'. I've been through a fair bit in the last 9 months (made redundant, splitting up with LTP), and I've really missed her - both as support and as someone to have fun with.

So... I know I'm being unreasonable, but as I don't have children, hoping you can show me some things from a parent's perspective, and help me to stop resenting a 9 month old baby blush

Mummysaysno Thu 13-Jun-13 02:17:16

Read this while feeding 2 week old DC4... could have cried! Yes, perhaps your friend is being a bit precious, but for her she is only trying her best, and trying to be a good Mum... I think I was the same first time around.

I just wanted to say that you sound like a wonderful friend...please do carry on with your understanding and everyone could benefit from unconditional friendships. You are so understanding of her situation...hopefully with time your friend will come out of her bubble a bit, or have number two, and then be even more home-tied, but either way, you are a real bonus to her life, and a real example of what true friendship means!!

burberryqueen Thu 13-Jun-13 02:29:21

what you have described might sound a bit 'precious' but also she could be
very tired or have a slightly abusive partner like mine was who basically told me that with babies, my social life was over.

spatchcock Thu 13-Jun-13 02:56:31

YANBU. But it sounds very isolating for her, I wonder if there's anything else going on. I would find that kind of lifestyle claustrophobic, but that's just me looking in from the outside, of course.

Love your name, OP!

Morloth Thu 13-Jun-13 03:01:01

I guess you just don't really know what is going on with her/the baby though.

If he isn't much of a sleeper then she might be shattered. Imagine 9 months without a full night's sleep.

Friendships change over time, I have friends who I was really close to years ago, fell out of touch with and who are now becoming good friends again as our lives bounce back towards each other.

Stay in touch and invite her to stuff, one day the fog will lift.

rundontwalk Thu 13-Jun-13 04:01:01

Spatchcock beat me too it in their post above! Exactly what I was going to say. & You do sound like a lovely friend by the way-it's nice to see smile

fuckwittery Thu 13-Jun-13 04:31:40

I couldnt leave my two in the evening for more than a couple of hours, lots of milk, wouldnt take bottles, screaming if no boob. This was til 16m and 18m. I missed loads of social events but was absolutely at pains to explain to childless friends why and suggested day time things instead. And repeately said how gutted i was to miss the event. Your friend is putting an odd spin on it if she really cant go out in the evening but she may be trying to put a brave face on as others have said. Must say, my relationship with my bf only recovered when she had her first child and lost some friendships altogether.

MyShoofly Thu 13-Jun-13 04:36:15

Well I don't socialize much because I work FT and that means every minute I'm not at work is full on family time. I don't think that's precious and I wouldn't apologize for it. generally I make lots of time for friends....if they accept that DH and the kids will be coming long too. that is just us now. That is how I like it. our priorities have completely changed.

I am on my second mat leave currently but DH is not...that means we still only have weekends for really good family time IYKWIM? Besides, being the parent left behind with the kids while the other goes out, can feel tiresome....even though you know everyone needs alone time - they may still as a couple be grappling with that. DH and I do 3 years in.

not everyone handles the huge life-change of having kids the same.

MyShoofly Thu 13-Jun-13 04:41:28

I should add though that She was unreasonable if she really didn't make a massive effort to make it to your birthday celebration though. I can see why that upset you.

RubyOnRails Thu 13-Jun-13 04:42:16

Even with the best baby in the world, a toddler who gets on famously with his dad, a husband who gives me all the freedom and support and friends who understand, I've only just started getting any semblance of a social life's exhausting having a baby if its your first. I have to say by nine months I was back to craving a social life...but certainly the first few months fly by in a fog of sleep deprivation

RubyOnRails Thu 13-Jun-13 04:44:05

Also, things change quite drastically...a week ago my three month old was sleeping through....I'm now being woken twice a night...given the chance of a good keep and seeing my mates, I know what I'll be doi g this weekend..

aldiwhore Thu 13-Jun-13 07:29:56

I was going to say YABU because relationships change, and I haven't seen my best friend for about 6 months (she has no children, mine are 5 and 9). Babysitters are a huge cost and a huge problem, she's not interested in seeing me with my children and my DH mostly works away over weekends, so I feel stuck... probably the reverse to you!

YANBU though, because it grates on me that my friend can't be more accomodating, or just a little flexible in her social demands (she will only meet in one venue, one that I cannot justify the cost of).

My sister has just had a baby, I never know when to ring, whenever I do I get told off for disturbing the baby, so actually I DO understand.

So I don't think it's so much the circumstances, but rather your friend's lack of flexibility and effort to see you.


cory Thu 13-Jun-13 07:35:57

In the case of a clingy/difficult baby, I would probably have suggested bringing him to the night out- but that would depend on how precious the rest of you were about your girly time wink

Pilgit Thu 13-Jun-13 07:46:18

I have to admit I'm a bit weirded out by the 'so we can all spend time with DS.' Just because you think the sun shines out of their arse doesn't mean the rest of the world does! I have never expected my friends to want to spend time with my children - it has been lovely that they have and want to, but they are my friends not my DD's and it is fine to want to spend time with friends without the children. It may be that she is just exhausted and doesn't want to admit it.

pinkr Thu 13-Jun-13 07:47:14

With my friend I go round in the evening sometimes and take part in the bedtime routine...we bath, read a book and then I go downstairs and set up tea whilst she settles the baby on bed....could you not suggest that? Maybe she's not wanting you to see her bf-ing our something? Its quite odd! Yanbu!

Dilidali Thu 13-Jun-13 07:55:21

You sound like a really good friend, OP, it's lovely to see.
As the others said, it can be a bit tough in the beginning, patience is the key.
Perhaps a quick lunch would be ok, meet in town and grab something to eat together, with the baby? Or a coffee?
I had one of those babies for which routine was paramount and she would scream her head off if not in bed/fed in a calm environment etc at exact hours, I couldn't think straight if she screamed. And I did not set out to be a regimented mother, trust me, I used to be pretty easy. Now I go out more, attend parties and girlie days, it is somewhat easier, but sometimes I still have to cancel, not because my friends aren 't important, but I'm really needed at home.

noblegiraffe Thu 13-Jun-13 08:00:16

There's no way in hell I could have gone out for the evening when my DS was 8 months. He was bfed, I couldn't express, and he wouldn't have settled for DH all evening with no bfing.

I also wouldn't have wanted friends around because it would have been a waste of time trying to entertain them while running up and down the stairs tending to the baby all evening. We couldn't even watch a film without a good few interruptions. No chance of watching anything on TV without a pause button. It was awful.

But if she has a baby who sleeps 7 till 7 perfectly and she can express and leave a bottle for emergencies and just doesn't want to socialise, that's different.

Forgetfulmog Thu 13-Jun-13 08:08:13

Well I think YABU. My dd is 9 mo & ebf - still feeds every 1-2 hours & won't take a bottle. Her sleep is a bit shit so we've instilled a bedtime routine that starts around 6 & as she can be a nightmare to settle (& still bf) I can't take a night off. I'd love to, but can't.

You have no idea what type of baby your friend has, maybe your friend would love to take some time apart but can't simply because of the reasons I've outlined above.

SolomanDaisy Thu 13-Jun-13 08:09:02

I didn't have an evening apart from DS until he was about a year. He fed more in the evenings and I fed him to.sleep. I took him to other people's houses and had people round here, but he was a late sleeper which made it easier. Anyone who.couldn't understand that this was how things are for me for what is really a very short period of time isn't worth bothering about.

Lots of people find having a new baby overwhelming, it's only on mumsnet that you get this competitive 'it's easy and I was out drinking a bottle of tequila when he was 5 days old'.

Osmiornica Thu 13-Jun-13 08:10:13

I probably wouldn't have been able to go out at that point either as I was also breastfeeding and the baby wasn't sleeping through the night (nowhere near).

However, I did invite people round in the evenings - this was my lifeline. I couldn't express anything worthwhile so that wasn't an option and isn't for lots of women.

So I'm not sure if yabu or not.

lljkk Thu 13-Jun-13 08:15:49

Snurk at mandatory daily "family bonding time". What a load of hooey.

It's an 8-9 month old baby, I should hope not exclusively breastfed any more.

I guess you'll have to accept new boundaries to the friendship, OP. I don't blame you at all for feeling hurt.

YoniBottsBumgina Thu 13-Jun-13 08:21:18

I would say either her baby is an utter nightmare in the evenings and/or her partner is not supportive. You say she hasn't been apart from the baby for longer than to have a shower? Does this include with the baby's dad? That seems bizarre if so, and I was very protective over DS in the early days and didn't really want to go out.

PicaK Thu 13-Jun-13 08:24:26

You sound like a great friend. Everything else has been said but just wanted to reiterate that bit.

vvviola Thu 13-Jun-13 08:27:47

Iljkk - did you read the posts from those of us who had babies of that age that couldn't be left? DD2 was still pretty much exclusively bf at that age - in that she refuses bottles, was allergic to most formula and had pretty much stopped eating after 2 months of pain from undiagnosed allergy issues.

I barely got a moment away from her, she certainly wouldn't have settled for anyone else. I would have quite liked to go out in the evening if I'd had any local friends to go out with, I was a new emigrant

But do you know, for the most part, the sympathy for sleep deprivation stops at about 4 months (when they "should" be sleeping through) and by 8 months people seem to think you should have everything under control. And when, it's your second... So I didn't tell people how unbelievably hard I was finding it. Even my best friend got "it's great! She's not the best sleeper, but what can you do?".

I didn't tell people I was so tired I couldn't sit down during the day when DD was awake and playing on her mat, as I was afraid I'd fall asleep. I didn't tell people that I wouldn't come out for coffee some days because I was so tired I couldn't trust myself not to crash the car. confused

You (as in the general you, not you personally) can have no idea what is going on in someone's life all the time, and sometimes what might sound like a dreadful excuse is a combination of pride and just trying to hold it together because if you admit how hard you are finding it, you might just totally fall apart. confused

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Thu 13-Jun-13 08:30:48


Yes, things change when babies come along. I don't think anyone really expects things to carry on as before and make allowances. The problem is that sometimes some mums can go over the top spending every waking minute with their child to the almost total exclusion of very close friends and then a couple of years down the road find they have lost their friends and don't understand why. Friends understand to a certain point but there is a line where they can feel completely pushed aside and it does feel a bit hard done by when the mum suddenly decides years later that they can pick up where they left off.

Yes, priorities change, but friendships are like plants - they do need a bit of feeding and attention to stop them dying.

We're not talking about A friend, we're talking about BEST friends for 15 years. If this baby is particularly difficult to leave (which is possible), I would have thought the friend could have told this to the OP, who is her best friend. I would feel a bit hurt if my best friend couldn't have even turned out for an hour to my 30th birthday do.

pigletmania Thu 13-Jun-13 08:36:54

Yanbu at all. Her baby is 9 months not a tiny baby, for one blooming evening in a while she can have you round, or her dh can look after te baby and you go for a meal or whatever. She is being very precious and alienating her good friends with her behaviour. Life does not stop because you have a baby!

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