Struggling without DH(17 Posts)
My DS is 3 weeks old today. He's brilliant. He is a very happy baby and I'm really enjoying being a mum. He is mine and my partner's first child.
DH works every other day and every other weekend. This week he has worked sat, sun, mon and will work weds and fri with the weekend off.
His hours are super long. He starts at 7:30am and finishes at 10:30pm - usually earlier but only by an hour or so. He commutes into London and that journey takes about 1hr 30mins so he leaves at 5:30am and gets home at around midnight (if the trains are behaving!).
So this weekend has been his long weekend on. I did saturday on my own with much success. It only really went to pot when it came to my dinner time and DS wanted feeding just as my dinner was ready - so i ate with my left hand with the plate on the sofa next to me whilst nursing with the other (he is EBF)!
Then Sunday afternoon my DM came down to stay and cooked and cleaned for me, which was so helpful but she was really getting on my nerves! I dont know why and I do appreciate her help as I was able to have some tasty food and eat it like a normal person without worrying about DS!
Towards the end of the day I was feeling tearful and just wanted DH home. When he came home I cried on his shoulder... This is so unlike me!
I'm also feeling quite anxious about going out and the feeling isn't getting any better. We have horses and a dog so I need to be doing stuff with them more regularly now, but am struggling to want to get out the house as everything we can possibly need is here... Warmth, warm water, comfort...! I had an ECS so I'm only going up to the stables to look at my horse and see my friends but I'm so scared that my DS is too cold or too warm...
Mum just left and now I'm just sat here crying. We dont have family nearby and we didnt meet any parents on our antenatal classes as there was only 2 classes and no one really spoke. Is this going to get easier? How on earth am I ever going to manage to eat and shower on those long weekends unless I have help around which I dont really want?
Apologies if i've posted in the wrong place... I wasn't sure where to put this!
Sorry to hear you're struggling OP. I completely get it, it can be totally overwhelming to begin with, even with a DH who's around more.
First, don't feel bad about crying, it helps with the stress!
I would suggest trying to get your baby onto some kind of routine. It doesn't have to be rigid at only 3 weeks old but it will help you see windows of time when you can eat/wash/sleep. Unfortunately I wouldn't count on getting a hot cup of tea any time soon though
And don't beat yourself up about not making it out to do other jobs. You need a bit of time to spend at home acclimatising to parenthood!
Good luck, things will get better x
Thank you RoLoh. I'm not sure how to do a routine currently... The only mink routine we have is first thing where we doze til 8am and then he has a feed and then goes to sleep in his moses basket whilst i get dressed and put some make up on and then carry him downstairs. The rest of the day is a bit of a lottery - sometimes he'll sleep on and off but some days he insists on staying awake 10am til 4pm!
What's a mink routine?! I think I meant vague... The only vague routine...!
I felt exactly the same when dc1 was the same age. I promise you it gets easier. I went on to have 3 more!
Ask your health visitor about mother and baby groups - they are a lifesaver. I used to go to them most days. They get you out of the house, give you other women to talk to and ask advice from if you're stuck.
It's tough when your OH works long hours in those first few weeks. I remember hating the evenings a lot too, trying to get DD to sleep when DP was out. I have to admit I put DD down on her own in a bedroom at a very young age as I just needed a few hours in the evening.
Take it a little bit at a time. Try and get out a little bit more each day, even if it's a walk around the block. Make sure you have food in the house like pasta or something that can be quickly reheated so you can feed yourself in the evenings, and not live on biscuits!
Once you're ready, you can try baby groups if you want to. I also made friends through MN and NM (sorry!) so I had people to meet up with occasionally.
Even with DH home l ate one handed with dd1 for a long time (dh would cut up my dinner )
It's tough in the first few weeks trying to find your stride. You'll get a system in place soon and it will get easier.
Thanks for the replies.
I'm concerned that where I used to be out and about all the time, i really am worried about going out now. Is this normal?
I managed lunch and dinner without holding DS today so am very pleased (although am possibly suffering a bit of indigestion lol)
Your baby is so small and the whole world is new to him. You have gone through a massive physical change, a mix of hormones and your body getting over pregnancy and birth. To be honest if you get through the day with everyone fed, and no major/minor injuries it counts as a win. You are allowed to feel overwhelmed it's normal.
A lot of mums use a sling to get some hands free time. My DH works long hours too, and I'm on the coal face with our little ones for about 14 hours a day. Once you are more confident try going to baby groups to meet other people and to help break the day up, even walking up the road and back can help.
I haven't gone out much in the early months with both my dc. I just didn't want to and didn't understand what the big deal was. Baby groups etc are for the mum's and if it's not your thing (and they're definitely not mine!) then don't go
Your baby is 3 weeks old, there's no hurry to go out unless you really want to. At that stage I'd take my dd for a daily walk but only visited the baby group when having dd weighed as they were on at the same time. I started going to groups properly when she was 8 weeks as that was when I was more confident being out and about with her and desperate for adult company. If you're thinking of baby classes have a Google for some in your area, new terms will be starting in January (but you'll most likely be able to attend a free taster session part way through a term). Do you have a local children's centre? I met some nice mums on a baby massage class run by my centre.
My dd is ebf and cluster fed in the evenings. I don't think I ate dinner or lunch with two hands until she was about 10 weeks. I would have struggled without my DP. DP would batch cook lasagne/cottage pie so id have something to just chuck in the microwave if he was working late or abroad.
I found lunch the hardest and would often walk to the shop just to buy a sandwich as it was almost impossible to make one.
I wouldn't get too hung up on a routine at this stage unless that's what you really want especially if you are demand breastfeeding - in my experience it would be difficult.
With showering I actually found that the easiest thing with a baby. In the morning after I have breakfast I put her in her bouncer and bring her into the bathroom with me. Even if she was crying the sound of the water calmed her and my hairdryer often puts her to sleep.
Good luck, the first few weeks are tough
Wow 3 weeks? You sound like you are doing great! Second the suggestion for the sling as it really helps you feel you've got some freedom with you arms free at least!
Hi OP, I can completely sympathise, I felt like you did with DD1 and now feeling it again with DS1 who is 8 weeks - as a PP said it is a really overwhelming time, and totally normal. I Have a few suggestions which helped me:
From about 5/6 weeks you can start taking baby to eg baby massage or baby sensory classes. This is more for you than baby at this point! It will get you out of the house and you will likely meet similar parents. I know staying at home can seem tempting but I bet you will feel a lot better and also more confident with the baby getting out, especially mid morning - if not classes yet just to a local coffee shop, baby will likely sleep and you can have a coffee/cake and check Mumsnet in peace!
Babies change so much in the first few months - it may not seem it now but in a few weeks your baby will be different again, may even be finding something of a routine themselves, oh and will likely be smiling!
With DH being away - get yourself set up on Netflix or iplayer etc for the evenings feeding and alone - and go shopping in the day for easy to make and eat food. I've just stocked up for the week and with snacks etc and I feel a bit better about things just knowing I have some food in the house I can eat quickly and easily or if all else fails , snack on!
Ummm and post here! You will get through it OP I promise!
Thank you everyone.
There is a local baby group about a 15min walk from me but am a bit stuck for when it comes to shopping as I'd need a car to get places and cant drive for 6 weeks (3 weeks to go!).
My worry about the baby groups is meeting other mums... I dont know why, but it scares me... I'm really sociable but it's in my work and horsey circles... And i'm a bit awkward in situations that i'm not confident in... I guess it'll all get better as I get more confident with DS.
I've stopped beating myself up about not going out on days when DH isnt here. He's home today and has stocked up on tasty treats and ready meals for the next few days He's also taken DS out for a walk with the dog!
We have a sling but DS is so long that i'm worried his legs are getting squished or that he cant breathe! I'm better when someone else is around to check i've done it right!
I've also gotten over my fear of nappy changes this weekend, yay!
Baby groups are a bit scary at first, but remember you do have a topic of conversation already supplied - what's their name, how old are they etc Compliment their babygrow if you have to!
I found remembering that a lot of people might be as nervous as you are in this new situation can help. If there's someone who you can sort of make awkward conversation with, they might be feeling as awkward as you are. After a few times seeing them, you can always ask if they'd like to pop by for a coffee one afternoon. Sometimes you have to be the one to make the first move. I found it terribly embarrassing (how British!) but actually of the few people I braved asking, almost all said yes and now we're still friends a few years on.
Can I recommend a sling library if it's something you are interested in. DS3 is 8 weeks and I love ours. You get to meet other mums and to learn how to babywear properly. There is also a facebook etc to go on between meetings. But 3 weeks with a first DC is early days. To echo a pp, if everyone is alive, fed and watered at bedtime you have made it that day!
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