A place for stay at home mums and dads to discuss life as a full-time parent.
A place for stay at home mums and dads to discuss life as a full-time parent.
I HATE BEING A SAHM!
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 10:33
I hate it, I hate every minute of it. I wake up and I want to cry, I want to cry all day and then I go to bed and I can't sleep, I toss and turn for hours because I'm dreading waking up again.
It's not because I don't love my children, believe me they are everything to me. And I know I should feel 'greatful' as my MIL tells me repeatedly and scornfully. I know I've been given a life so many women would love. But I don't. I can't, no matter how hard I've tried to.
If I could change my circumstances I would in a heartbeat, the harrowing truth is, I can't. My DH works 40 hours a week. His wage isn't great and we have a lot of debt we are working through. Money is more than tight, it's fairly non existant. The only way we'd be able to improve our financial situation is for me to work, which I'd love. I always worked until health issues blighted me during my second pregnancy. The problem with working, is that I'd have to work at LEAST 60 hours a week. And even then, we wouldn't earn enough combined to pay for childcare as well as rent, council tax, utility costs and food. Never mind clothing, school dinners etc. We have no family willing to help, it's hard enough getting their grand parents to see them more than three times a year (all of them live ten minutes away, if that!) and neither of us has any friends anymore.
I hate the endless struggle of running a home, a family, a relationship and budgeting. I find it mind numbing! I wake up any time between 5am and 6am depending on when the youngest decides to start the day. My DH gets up with us, but he showers and eats before heading off to work for 7am. I have two children with additional needs, DD has aspergers and ADHD and is in CAMHS for suspected depression (can you believe!) due to years of bullying. DS1 has aspergers, ADHD and ODD. Plus the toddler and all three mixed means all out war. And I don't mean they nit pick and argue, I mean they batter each other. Even if I separate them, they find a way to annoy the other so much, that they turn into the hulk and frankly, I wouldn't be surprised if a person shaped hole was left in a solid wall. Combine this with the 3 hours sleep I've had a night for years...... You are looking at a mother crying into her coffee daily. I get attacked all the time, I'm constantly covered in cuts and bruises from splitting up fights. I never have time to even brush my teeth or hair and I refuse to wake up half an hour earlier, I'm not waking up at 4.30am/5am and having even less than my allotted 3 hours. I stumble out of the house at 8.20am to do the school run, I always look sick. My body aches every day, I have had a headache for 6 months. No kidding. Its there every day.
After the school run comes the mammoth task of cleaning up the mess from the night before and the morning. I tend to be in and out of micro sleeps between 5pm and 10pm. But as soon as my head hits that pillow, my body is ready to party and my brain decides its going to plan a stop to world hunger and the meaning of life in general. I can't relax, baths just annoy me. I've tried lounging but it's impossible. I think it's an aversion due to my mother getting drunk in the bath for hours every night. So I shower, provided I'm not so exhausted I'm slurring my words, which isn't unusual.
I clean for hours a day, u pick the kids up from school and nursery. Which by the way is three different schools. I come home, I clean some more, I break up the boxing match, I clean some more, I clean up the cup that just got smashed even though is was meant to be shatter proof plastic, I make them a snack, I down my 6th coffee of the day(I tried a few days without to improve my sleep, but I was out like a light at 12pm 😦), I prepare dinner while stopping the toddler from licking the cat again, I stop another fight that just broke out because "Minecraft Is well better than Mario", I clean some more, I put dinner in the oven, I wipe the remains of cat food off the toddlers face, I move cat food, I clean up yet another mess caused by a fight, I locate toddler, I serve dinner, I stop them stabbing each other, I clean food off window, and so on and so on.
When DH comes home, at 6pm, he always says yo me..... "What's the matter? Why you so stressed?" which is usually the time I decide to sit in the toilet for ten minutes to save me being the one who left the person shaped hole in the wall.
And I feel a little better now I have ranted. My apologies mummy's and daddy's.
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 10:39
Oh I eventually brush my teeth by the way.
HateSummer · 29/01/2018 10:46
You need your dh to do his share of work in the house because he’s not doing much. Sorry but 40hrs a week isn’t much at all. My dh does about 60 a week and still manages to do a few school runs a week and cook some nights, tidy bathroom/kitchen.
I work 25 hrs a week in the evenings only, so a lot of the day tasks are left to me but I wouldn’t be able to do them properly if I didn’t have help with other things. You really need to get your husband to step up to stop you stressing out.
You have my sympathy, having a job and talking to different people really helps me relax and wind down after a day with kids. I’d try to get out a bit a meet some people.
IWishYouWere · 29/01/2018 10:48
Hi remember to be kind to yourself your doing a great job even if it might not feel like it.
Are you entitled to any dla for the kids with additional needs and could you nap when the kids are at school/nursery the housework can wait or get your husband to tidy at the end of the night.
idontlikealdi · 29/01/2018 10:55
You need your husband to help. 40 hours a week is a fairly standard ft job - he needs to step up at home.
Why would you need to work 60 hours - is that to make enough to cover childcare?
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 10:58
I know 40 hours isn't a lot, he'd work over time if it was on offer more. He's usually exhausted himself though, his job is very heavy manual labour and he had a horrific accident years ago with head injuries, so he still gets tired. He does help a bit, he does the bedtime routine most nights and will do some cleaning during the weekends. If his mother found out her son wasn't being treated like the man of the house and getting his rest she'd give me hell. And I'd rather avoid the added stress of her. She's good at turning up a lot more if I'm not being the dutiful wife and sending texts to my DH about how awful I am and how I need to be more grateful for him.
WTFIsThisVirus · 29/01/2018 11:00
Can you work part time or term time? I'm confused, sorry if I missed something, but are you at home with the toddler all day? What does your OH do in the evenings and weekends?
MyDcAreMarvel · 29/01/2018 11:06
I am confused, how old are your dc and who is at home in the daytime?
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 11:08
Not entitled to DLA/Pip for the kids. Because they are getting very strict about who gets it and who doesn't. My sister had her sons stopped about a year ago because his autism doesn't affect his daily living. I'd have to work 60 hours a week just to break even. We get some tax credits, obviously no help with rent, CT etc. But what I'd earn wouldnt cover childcare as well as bringing out debt down. We got into a lot of debt after my DHs accident, wuthering legal costs and rent or council tax not getting paid. It completely slipped my mind and he stopped getting paid full for months (on statutory sick pay)
We'd need the childcare with us not having family willing to help or friends.
Almostthere15 · 29/01/2018 11:11
Of course you hate it. It sounds super hard.
Do you have little ones still at home in the day? If not I would prioritise an hour's sleep after the school run. Having those microsleeps is probably impacting on your night time sleep.
What work did you Do? Could you pick up any freelance? Even for a couple of hours to keep your toe in the water?
HateSummer · 29/01/2018 11:11
Your mil isn’t part of your family set up. You and your husband need to make decisions and do things that suit both of you. If he agrees with his mum, then tell him to go back and live with her. Why is she having a say in what’s happening in your household? And why does she have the authority to make things stressful for you? Your husband needs to address this with her so she stops making digs.
As for working, I thought there was a certain threshold you had to reach before you stopped getting benefits? (Sorry if I’m wrong). Even if you worked a few hours a day in the evening or weekend, it would help your self esteem and take you out of the monotony of daily life.
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 11:20
My toddler goes to nursery 2.5 days a week. DD is 12 and in secondary school but I need to take her and collect her because of her difficulties. DS1 is 10 he's still in junior school, again I need to collect him and take him because of his difficulties. DS2 in nursery. Sorry I think it because I said three different schools but it 2 different schools and one nursery.
DH since his accident, which he also isn't entitled to any help for, gets tired still. He's like a totally different person after the head injuries. He was in a coma for three weeks suffered two heart attacks during said coma, recovery took two years, so he lost his job after 6 months and he was on JSA for a year, then he got a little job in a shop working 16 hours a week before getting the job he has now, 2.5hrs a day he commutes. At night he does help with bedtime and believe me it can take hours for our two with additional needs to even go asleep at night(it has been known to be midnightish) , which keeps the youngest awake or wakes him up a few times and its a real struggle. Then he collapses into bed. I do help him out too, I'm not just leaving him to deal with all three.
greeeen · 29/01/2018 11:23
It sounds like you you have a DH/MIL problem. Does your DH address how rude and disrespectful his mother is to/about you? I agree that DH should be doing more at the weekend so you aren't doing hours of cleaning a day. That and being treated with respect by your MIL could at least take the edge off. Sorry you're feeling this way, I hope some people can offer better advice but those are the two things that stood out to me.
Needingsomeadvice · 29/01/2018 11:24
Hi OP and
I really do feel for you. My DD is diagnosed ASD (since toddler age) and my DS is on the pathway to an assessment for possible ASD himself. Both kids have completely different challenges and needs. I don't even have a toddler on top like you do, but I am still not in employment due to how much time and energy it all takes.
I agree with others, that your DH really needs to step in a bit in the evenings, although if he does bedtimes that is really good (mine doesn't, and I have had years of mine not sleeping, only recently starting to show improvement).
Are you totally sure you can't get DLA, because my DD gets MRC and LRM, and it makes a massive difference to us? I can claim carers allowance, and tax credits get the disability element which bumps it up loads. I would seek advice if I were you - Cerebra are great and not just for that reason - they run lots of free courses on things like sleep and mindfullness.
Are you involved in any support groups? I couldn't manage without mine - plus events for kids with additional needs can often be a good way to find other people in your position.
Mumagain2017 · 29/01/2018 11:29
I fully respect people who can be a SAHM but it's not me
I hope you find a resolution xx
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 11:31
My MIL don't get me started on her. She's just nasty. She's the reason we got into so much legal debt, when DH was in hospital after the accident she started getting in touch with solicitors about claiming 100k if he died (it was an accident at work). I didn't know this until after. Then when I wasn't at the hospital and he was awake she started telling him he needed to sue etc which he, unwittingly and confused did. When I found out I went crazy, but she said because I wasn't married to him (at the time) I had no authority over her son as she was still next of kin. She didn't get cm very far with her claims though as he was a grown man and all the solicitors where confused and amused that she thought she could claim for someone else's accident. Anyway a legal battle and a job loss later we were in thousands of pounds worth of debt.
DH doesn't agree with what she says about me. He has told her on more than one occasion, but she refuses to listen. She thinks I'm controlling him. He tries to keep it amicable.
Sumo1 · 29/01/2018 11:32
I went to doc with anxiety, unable to sleep and she said for people in your situation (Home life issues) I often prescribe ADs. So perhaps see GP to see if they feel they can help.
BlueBooby · 29/01/2018 11:39
It sounds really, really hard op. I hate being a sahm too btw. I only have one dd (also with suspected asd) and she started a couple of day a week at nursery a few weeks ago. I have found being a sahm the last 4 years absolutely relentless and I don't have anywhere near as much to deal with as you.
I'm not surprised you feel the way you do. You sound run off your feet. It can't be easy with your husband's medical issues on top of everything else.
I'm trying to think of something to suggest. It sounds like you need something for yourself. The days your youngest is at nursery, is there anything you can do? I understand money is tight, and I know from looking myself how hard it can be to get a paid job when you only have limited hours to work in. I'm thinking of looking at volunteering somewhere, just to give myself a sense of purpose/identity back, until I am in a better position to be able to find paid work. Is that something you can do....it would be adding to your workload though of course but maybe worth it if it gives you a sense of self back. Or maybe some kind of hobby. I joined an online feminist book group on Facebook which I've enjoyed taking part in. It's very relaxed and even if I've not had time to read the book I still enjoy reading through the discussion and just seeing adult conversation.
Sorry if my ideas are useless op. The one thing I can suggest with certainty is ignore your mil. You are the one living your life, not her.
Namechangeforthisasashamed · 29/01/2018 11:43
I sometimes think that my MIL is the way she is because she is in such an abusive relationship. Not physically, although my DH has suspected it during his life.
They are very archaic. He worked as much as he wanted, no matter how much she needed him at home. He would and still comes home, takes his work boots off, puts his shoes on and goes to the pub every night till late. Then he's gone by 5am. Every weekend he went fishing. He was considered the boss at home, and what he said went. DH said he hardly ever saw him and he said he questioned his mum all the time, but she'd always tell him his dad deserved it because he was a hard working man keeping a roof over their heads. Even though she worked too.
DH was an only child and his mum says he's the apple of her eye. Although I see it as bordering more on the abusive controlling side. Even if he gets a cold she's all over the place telling him to come home so she can look after him. After his accident she tried to take him back to her house so he could recover even though we had a home and two kids.
SleepingStandingUp · 29/01/2018 11:43
Depending on how high your debts are, have you looked at any debt clearance solutions? Bankruptcy? Restructuring so it takes longer but you can afford to live a bit easier?
Could you earn more than DH and swap roles?
If youngest is only in nursery 2.5 days, you need to try and catch up on sleep or rest crap telly and a sofa. The housework will still be there.
Could you look at a weekend job just to get out and meet adults?
If you still have a Hv might asks be worth a chat with her
MaverickSnoopy · 29/01/2018 11:53
Well done for writing it all down and getting it out of your head. You're getting some good advice here. I have a few practical thoughts.
I wasn't clear on if your sleep deprivation was caused solely by an overactive mind or if it's also due to children's night waking too? If the former I would seriously consider some herbal nytol to help break the cycle and get some sleep into you. If the children are keeping you up then your DH needs to step in for a night at the weekend. When things got bad for us I slept on the sofa one night a week so I couldn't hear anything. I never knew how heavenly a lumpy sofa could be!
You say you spend your mornings clearing up from yesterday. So you're always dealing with yesterday's battle as well as today's. I refuse to go to bed until everything is done so that I'm not at a disadvantage the next day. At some point the day before you need to bulk make packed lunches (either when kids are at school or after bedtime). Make two days worth in one go and keep things simple. Batch cook for dinners once a week either in the evening or at the weekend, or get DH to do it. When I worked full time we used to spend a day at the weekend once a month making chilli, bolognase, curry and casserole. We'd make enough for three meals a week for a month and then also have simple dinners like jackets, pizza etc the rest of the time. It really helped.
When your toddler is at nursery, sleep. It also sounds like you're constantly cleaning. Cleaning around children is impossible because they just undo it, do I wouldn't bother doing too much, just save it until after bedtime. I have one housework job a day and rotate through everything over a two week period. It's mostly clean and tidy with some chaos with this system. Doesn't work for everyone though.
I will freely admit I'm not familiar with your children's disabilities so my advice her may be useless. Would you be able to put up some visible house rules with consequences? We also use a reward chart from time to time. An interesting alternative a friend does is have two jars - one for good behaviour and one for bad. There is one set of jars and the children have to work together to fill the good behaviour jar, rather than the bad behaviour jar. She just uses random buttons or pennies. Each jar has a line they have to get past to either get a consequence or reward with a trip out somewhere. Do they get pocket money? If so then can you link it to housework? Just basic chores like laying the table/emptying the bins/dusting. If not then what about a movie night at home or that sort of thing as a reward.
It sounds like you're stuck in a really awful rut and struggling to see the wood for the trees. Being a parent is hard and even harder when you're dealing with the challenges that you are! I work 3 days a week but I have to be so organised and work like a robot to pack it all in and I constantly feel like I'm drowning so it's not a wonder you feel like this.
oncountdowntospring · 29/01/2018 11:53
I don't think you need the pressure of going back to work until you have a few more ducks in s row, sleeping at night being 1. MIL butting out being 2.
Have you had any help with your debt? There is only so much an individual can negotiate, if you get a proper debt charity to help you then they can sometimes negotiate for you and make you debt more manageable. I can't remember what all the debt charitys are now but CAP seem to still be going and have a good reputation.
I've also have a child who has been violent in the past, eventually I managed to get some help in the home with behavioural techniques etc, this was through the school. I had to be honest about how dreadful things were though. Homestart also helped for a while (they were amazing) you may qualify as your youngest is under 5.
It's very hard, but sometimes you need a bit of help. I think I may well have sunk had I not taken it (tbh there are still days when I think that I still might, it's not all perfect yet by any means).
Small steps op. And pat yourself on the back for actually getting them to school and nursery!
Umakemefeellikedancing · 29/01/2018 11:58
for you OP. I would suggest getting involved in your local community when all your children are at school, be it volunteering or perhaps getting a term time part time job, or could you maybe do a little job when the kids are at school a few hours a week to get a bit of extra cash? Also, you need some rest and do not feel guilty for lying down for an hour's kip or just putting your feet up when the kids are at school/nursery. Sod what your MIL says, she sounds like a cow.
wannabestressfree · 29/01/2018 12:54
Off the top of my head....
Drink less coffee... will stop your mind racing.
Ask the doctor for ad's/ sleeping pills.
Reapply for DLA. It's common to be turned down the first time. It's a gateway benefit so could make a real difference to you. Then you can apply for caters allowance.
It sounds as if your husband could apply for pip In his own right.... have a look at it.
I think you need to manage home better before you look for work. I don't mean that negatively but just take one day at a time
Request early help at one of the schools?
MyDcAreMarvel · 29/01/2018 15:42
There have been no changes to the criteria for childhood dla and autism. It would be the expception not the rule for your child not to be entitled to dla.
Sumo1 · 29/01/2018 16:36
Tell DH not to repeat what DMIL has said to him. You don't need to know any more of her conniving than what she says directly to you.
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