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Young mum, struggling, don't know if it's my marriage, or me(4 Posts)
DH is a workaholic in a job he loves. He often leaves the house at 8am and gets back at past midnight. The rest of the time he is exhausted and mostly sleeps. He lives and breathes work and makes good money. He never takes the DCs by himself, only sees them at the weekends, I get up with them at night too, and when he does see them I am always present and naturally take the role as the primary caregiver.
I am currently a SAHM. It is an option I resorted to because of my fears. DC are 6mo and a 2 yo with both SN and auto immune disease. I am OCD and germ phobic and terrified of the DC getting ill, not helped by 2yo's autoimmune issues. I feel that nurseries and childminders is where they catch everything and she gets so ill every time she is in environments like that. Colds turn into pneumonia, stomach bugs turn into weeks of DD not eating and hospital visits. If I did not have this fear - or DD did not have auto immune, maybe I would not feel as panicky about illness as this.
The DC also do not go to any groups, mainly due to where we live (there aren't many) and partly due to my OCD and dd's issues. They do see other children, but it is hard for my 2yo with SN to interact with other children her age.
I'm reaching a point where my loneliness, tiredness and isolation with DCs by myself, plus my fears of illness are ruining my mental health. I have no one to speak to in the days or the evenings to offset my anxiety or to get perspective, so the fear gets out of control and I am on the verge of panic attacks. I really feel that if I was part of a supportive community and could talk through my fears regularly then they may be better. Family are supportive on the phone but hundreds of miles away. Friends are all abroad.
I am also rather embarrassed of my fears as I feel I am just a parent like anyone else and it's what everyone else is going through but I'm the one who can't cope. And other people have more than two DC or have two DC with SN.
I try to talk to DH about this but he insists the situation is just temporary and "part of the journey" to get us where we need to be as a family, financially. That and we both need to make sacrifices and i need to overcome my fears. He doesn't want to deal with my anxiety on top of the stresses he is under. He says his time away from DCs and being at work all the time is his sacrifice and torture enough for him, but I don't know if I believe him.
TBH, I wish I was him. I could go to an office, talk to people, not have to be there with the DCs for all the hard things and things I fear - like illness, SN problems, loneliness, hospital visits and feeling out of control. But he earns much much more than I would earn so it makes more sense that he is the one who works.
I feel stuck. I can't see the wood for the trees. I think maybe I project the blame for my fears and anxiety and situation on to DH and I over-idealise his experience of work. He is exhausted. I think we are both exhausted. I just don't know anymore. I know that he would not block 2yo going to SN nursery if I really insisted, but I am so fearful about her getting ill I Can't bring myself to do it. DH is not controlling. He also doesn't control money - I have enough to pay for some childcare if I wanted (we have a joint bank account,) but it is my fear holding me back. DH says get a babysitter and do what you want. But it is not as easy as that. Dd's needs are very complex - it is not a case of just "getting a babysitter." But of course DH doesn't understand that, as he is not around to see the reality of her issues.
Is it him or me or both? What practical things should I do to help myself? Do I just need to woman up?
You are both exhausted. He doesn't sound like a bad husband to me but all these issues combined are ammounting to more than you can both cope with.
I don't know if you have, but please speak to someone about this, your GP. This is taking over your life. DH work is taking over his life. You don't seem to be a team and neither can understand one another. Before you reach total breaking point ask for help.
It sounds like he tries to find solutions but they aren't what you want - is this because any solution will not work with your OCD? I really urge you to talk to a professional.
Oh love, you sound at the end of your tether!
Are you being treated for your OCD? Either with anti depressants or CBT/counselling?
I had anxiety and OCD after my first baby was born. I then went on to have twins who have a very rare genetic condition and developed verybsevere OCD, PND and anxiety, so I kind of understand where your coming from.
I am now on - an admittedly very high dose of - antidepressants and have had counselling, but I feel much better. I'm still a stickler for certain rules though and will not let any of them out of my sight!
Please speak to your GP, Health Visitor, Nurses or Consultants your DD sees. My DTs consultant has referred me for more help than my GP has because she understands the complexity of the issue and knows I need more support.
Are the any FB support groups or forums you could join to speak to parents who's children have the same condition as your daughter? I found this support invaluable when my twins were born. You can rant/ask advice/cry as much as you like and these people KNOW how you feel.
Don't compare your situation with others. If you break a finger you don't leave it untreated just because other people have broken arms. And even people living a life of luxury can get depressed and need help. Stop telling yourself not to moan and be a bit kinder to yourself.
In any case your situation sounds pretty dire to me ... and your husband is not helping. Is that because you are minimising your problems, perhaps? Or is he just rather selfish? Telling you to just pull yourself together is the classic unhelpful and insensitive response. Maybe he would take it more seriously if you were getting professional help?
How do you think you would cope with getting a babysitter/Au pair? Not just so you can go for counselling but also so you can spend time with other adults. You need to get some distance from this situation - you are constantly in the middle of it now and can't see the whole picture.
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