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Am I just a crap wife and mother?

(11 Posts)
SleepyintheSouth Wed 09-Mar-16 11:30:31

I am on Mat Leave and DH is working full time, 1 DC, 9 months old, who has been ill or teething since December.

I am so tired, I am bursting into tears for no reason. I can't actually remember a time when I wasn't tired and when my eyes weren't stinging with tiredness all day.

I do 95% of the night wakings as DH works full time. He sometimes does the weekends or takes DC in the morning so I can go back to bed for a couple of hours before he leaves for work but he rarely gets up in the night and if he does, is too tired to do things the next day.

We have no family living near who could help us and TBH I don't want my ILs to come and help even if they offered as all I would hear about all the time from ILs is about my 'poor, tired DH' and how they are 'worried he isn't getting enough sleep', how tough MIL had it when DH was young and 'how women these days have it so easy but still can't handle it' etc.

I have been feeling really down for the last few weeks and initially I thought it was my period and hormones but I can't seem to snap out of it. I have had depression and anxiety before and I am fighting it off as hard as I can as I know I have no time for that now and my primary responsibility is to my DC and DH.

My DH is a really good husband and father and does loads more than most of the other dads I know - I can't complain about him at all so I guess that just leaves me, right? Am I just a shit mother and wife?

I feel so ungrateful - I know there are loads of people worse off than me and loads of other mums who would love to have the support I get from my husband so maybe MIL is right and I just can't handle it after all?

StringTheory Wed 09-Mar-16 11:34:15

Sounds to me like you're a normal wife and mother with a young child. Definitely not shit. Perhaps speak to your HV about possible PND as it can come on when babies are a bit older. You wouldn't nessecarily need to go on medication but they will be able to help with some techniques. This weather won't help either. I really struggle with my son when the weather is cold and wet and we're stuck in doors. Try not to be so hard on yourself, parenting is hard.

StringTheory Wed 09-Mar-16 11:34:43

Also if your DH is supportive talk to him about it.

NewNameNotTheSame Wed 09-Mar-16 11:36:53

Please go and see your GP. Postnatal depression doesn't discriminate, it doesn't just happen to people with no support network so please don't think that you should be greatful for the small help you do get an just put up and shut up.

Your priority should be yourself, if you aren't okay then how can you look after others effectively?


PunxutawneyPhil Wed 09-Mar-16 11:46:12

Ignore your MIL. Tell your DH to step up. So what if he works full time? He has a 9-month-old child. His life doesn't get to carry on as normal while you get pushed to breaking point and beyond.

And so what if he does loads more than most of the other dads you know? That just means you know a lot of shit dads. You need sleep. Urgently.

tkband3 Wed 09-Mar-16 11:48:10

You are most definitely not a shit mother and wife - having a teething baby is really tough. What you are is tired...bone tired...tired to the very core of your being. Sleep deprivation is not used as a form of torture for nothing and going through long periods of broken sleep can undermine everything you do, meaning that the slightest thing can make you feel completely overwhelmed and emotional. I totally understand and empathise with you - my DTs were terrible sleepers as babies and it was a really difficult and trying time.

I would recommend going to see your health visitor or GP, just to chat about how you're feeling and see what they think. If you do have a touch of PND, there is no shame in having a bit of help to get through what is a really tricky time.

And your MIL is wrong - you are handling being a parent and wife, you're just going through a rough patch.

PunxutawneyPhil Wed 09-Mar-16 11:49:38

Sleep deprivation is torture. It is literally torture.

I can't believe your DH is 'too tired to do things' the next day on the odd occasion he helps with the night wakings. How does he expect you to function day in day out?

Choceclair123 Wed 09-Mar-16 12:30:02

Why are you doing all the night wakings? You still have to look after little one the following day. Just because you're not being paid doesn't mean you're not working. Sleep deprivation is so damaging. Your DH needs to share the load with you.

Skiptonlass Wed 09-Mar-16 13:13:24

You're 'just' tired.

I am too and it's breaking me. Go easy on yourself.

Your dh needs to do a bit more. If you go back to work the night wakings need to be 50:50.

Ignore MIL. Or whack on a cheery tinkly laugh and say "oh yes, it's SO much better these days. Must have been an absolute nightmare back then with women being Seen as second class citizens and failing to have any other purpose in life than child rearing. Must have been dreadful to be so unfulfilled. Of course men nowadays do so much more. I mean DH does nothing like as much as so many men I know, but .." Best passive aggressive hat on!

It's so tough managing on so little sleep. flowers

Skiptonlass Wed 09-Mar-16 13:15:19

Yes it's amazing how men are too tired to cope isn't it?

Buy him a copy of 'wife work' and make him do his fair share!

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 09-Mar-16 13:41:28

Oh love it's overwhelming right now, you're both pedalling hard to stand still. First things first, are you finding time to eat and drink, do you see anyone outside the home who's also going through this?

He is looking to limit engagement and you're looking at him to share the burden. If he is pitching in with house hold stuff, good. The normal housework is made harder with a baby especially if you are short on sleep. But it's hands on care of the baby that provides a real break. Please don't feel guilty if you want time to yourself.

It's not difficult to cook a meal or do the shopping or vacuum - it's the fact that you have to do it multiple times a week, over and over. Appliances and foodstuffs aren't breathing and demanding your attention. He must have forgotten that you do all this, fatigue and all, and he needs to help.

I know we don't get medals for endurance. I too hated the thought of hearing, "Ah well, in my day...." If DH has contact with his parents it is not necessarily disloyal to you if he lets slip life has got tougher since having the baby. As far as PILS go, if it simplifies a week having them help, don't pay heed to any remarks, do what you need to see you through this stage.

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