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s/o parent expectations: NOW what do you say to ttc-er's? - Page 2

post #21 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Musubi View Post
We have a few friends who are TTC and we completely tell them the truth. That while we sometimes miss going out, we don't regret trading the bar for babies.

We also tell them to be prepared to be "outed" everywhere you go. lol The first time DD yelled "mommy! mama!" in the middle of Target we quickly looked around to see who had heard. We realized that we needed to be completely okay with that, and to react would send the message that having two moms was not okay. Sometimes I still hush her in my head.
Until I got to the "having two moms" part and checked your signature, I actually thought that you were uncomfortable with people knowing you were a parent. I thought that your DD was using two different words for you.

And I know a family locally that has the same arrangement, and I had a discussion with one of the moms about how she's had trouble with the grandparents not getting it.

So, if you are a bit uncomfortable about being "outed" to everyone, you can be reassured that it isn't necessarily happening.

Unless, of course, your dd is actually hugging the parent in question while she says mommy or mama. Then, yeah, I think everyone'll pick up on the family arrangement.
post #22 of 36
TBH with you - I wouldn't have a clue!

Looking back, I wouldn't even know what to tell ourselves!

Its live changing all right. More so than I ever would have imagined. And I was already a stay-at-home-woman! lmao... Its just so personal! Because everyone has a different way of life I guess!

But - I have also never been asked....then again, I don't know anyone TTCing for the first time! lol Most people I know whom find themselves having their first, wern't trying! lmao So usually I just hit them up with practical advice (links/books on safe co sleeping, why not to CIO, best play to get a sling, etc)

I must have done and be doing something right though - I always get the comment that DS can't be my only/first as I am way too confident and relaxed! lol
post #23 of 36
Is there a glossary somewhere for ding-dongs like me? What is TTC and EC?

I am assuming that DTD means "doing the deed" (LOL!) from the context I see it in, but boy do I feel lost half the time.

Thanks
post #24 of 36
You can't be perfect. Don't even try. Don't lose your own identity in the identity of "mommy". It is tough, but worth it. There will be times when you wonder why you ever bothered to have kids and others when you can't imagine life without them. Nurture friendships with women (men if you are a guy) at different stages of life/parenthood. What seems show-stopping, end-of-the-world right now is merely a small bump, and someone with older children can show you that that stage ends (and you get another). Remember that the majority of parents love their children and are trying to do what is best for them, within the confines of what they know, and raise good, moral, upstanding people. Oh, and things usually don't go as planned. Learn to roll with it.
post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by NellieKatz View Post
Is there a glossary somewhere for ding-dongs like me? What is TTC and EC?

I am assuming that DTD means "doing the deed" (LOL!) from the context I see it in, but boy do I feel lost half the time.

Thanks
TTC- Trying to Conceive (unless you are in toronto and it is the Toronto Transit Comission )

EC- didn't see the context but usually seen as Elimination Communication
post #26 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by NellieKatz View Post
Is there a glossary somewhere for ding-dongs like me?
Yes, in the Questions and Suggestions forum. It's in the top section of forums on the main page, below the introductions forum.
post #27 of 36
i tell my friends that sometimes i just want to scream and pull my hair out, but then my little girl smiles at me and it makes all that go away. i think thats a pretty good description
post #28 of 36
I really wish someone would have set me straight on the sleep deprivation. I could've used a professional momma mentor too as I may have continued to work if I hadn't been so underwhelmed by daycare choices.

I do try to tell people what it's like. Especially young people who have time to properly plan.

I always advise that they save up as much money as possible for things like babysitting/part-time nanny--how many times have we seen maxed out mommas on MDC who needed some help but didn't have family or money to hire help? Too many times. I wish I had known to save more $$$ than we did (and I have/can afford mother's helpers!).

And that the biggest indicator (imo and ime) of parent quality is how well individual parents perform under extreme sleep deprivation. If you can function on 2-3 hours of sleep for months on end, you will have the energy to be a great parent, kwim?

Then I urge everyone to get 5-6 crockpot meals down before kids. It helps to be able to dump stuff in one pot and retrieve a nice dinner 6-8 hours later.

And I tell people to ask for help. I was just talking to my 20 something cousins and advising them to just have their mom move in for the first 8 weeks, esp. if they BF and let her baby them and the baby. Then grandma needs to come back at the 6 month mark for some more TLC b/c it seems that's when the sleep deprivation really starts to hurt.

As for the emotional life of a parent...gah, I don't go into it too much. There are so many days where I feel like a failure, not just as a parent, but as a human being. DD finds my fault lines and stresses them until I do something to 'heal' them so to speak. I find myself doing a lot more personal work on myself than I thought I would.

The thing that is hard to express is the absolute takeover of your life by kids. There is just no breathing space. I routinely am running flat out for my life from 7am through midnight. Taking care of DD, cooking, working, more working, more DD--I don't even clean on a regular basis and I'm still not able to get everything done.

I basically tell this anecdote to drive the point home "I was having an anaphylactic reaction to an antibiotic and even though my throat was swelling shut and we had to call 911, I still took care of DD." I mean, even if you could die, you're still mom, kwim? I don't know that anyone gets that until they have kids.
V
post #29 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nansense View Post
Great thread about our expectations pre-kids. SO now that reality has set in, what do you say to friends & family who ask you about the realities of parenthood? Do you cover up and say it's totally wonderful & fun OR spill about your really hard times and that it's much harder than you thought?
I tell the truth, which is that it has been so much more fun than I expected/imagined!

I think I was prepared for it to be hard - and it is - but not *harder* than I expected, and it *is* more fun/rewarding than I could have had the capacity to imagine.
post #30 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girlprof View Post
Love the iron-clad sense of humor idea.

A friend of ours has the best description. He always tells people - it's like climbing the highest mountain in the world. It will be more tiring and difficult than you can imagine, but the views can't be beat.

I like and agree with this. It is waaaaay more tiring and difficult than I could have imagined considering I had nothing to compare it to, but it is better than anything I have ever done before and makes me feel more alive, more capable, more womanly....more sleepy!

I tell the truth about the good and the bad.
post #31 of 36
Violet. I'm still so tired, will I ever get some rest? DS#1 is already 15...
post #32 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by KarenEMT View Post
Violet. I'm still so tired, will I ever get some rest? DS#1 is already 15...
Lalalalalalala I can't hear you. Where's the smilie with their fingers in their ears?

I don't wanna know that I will be tired for the next 2 decades.

I know for sure we get busier as they get older. More and more stuff to do.

V
post #33 of 36
How often do people ask? Seriously. I have seen a few folks ask on here, mostly laying out their expectations about one thing or another and then asking if their expectations are realistic...

but IRL ("in real life" for those asking about abbreviations), the folks I know who are pregnant (and sometimes the folks who are TTC) are already getting a ton of unsolicited advice and don't feel the need to collect more opinions. I've noticed that the majority of parents-to-be also have tons of their own opinions about things, and are already sure that things will go this-way-or-that-way if they do this-thing-or-that-thing.

I think that's the biggest thing that parents-to-be do that is unrealistic. They'll acknowledge that perfect parenting, etc. isn't possible, but then they'll go on and list a bunch of things that they are going to do with their kid. And that's not a bad thing...it's good to have thought things through. But the biggest reality check that happens is when you can't do everything you set out to do with your kid, or be the exact parent you set out to be, and then--and only then--are you able to really process what that is like and the grief, guilt, or feelings of failure that sometimes comes with it. Of course on the flip side, there is also the elation of finding what is positive but unexpected.

I just don't hear ttcers and pregnant folks asking all that much. I mean, I have a friend who asked me a lot of specific questions while pregnant, but I think for her she wasn't asking for a "reality check" as much as for very specific advice on particular preparations. If I would have taken that opportunity to dose her up with reality checks, I think she would have stopped asking.

I don't think you can rush the process of transitioning into the realities of parenthood. Everyone is going to have their own process, and folks aren't usually able to fully *hear* certain things at certain points in the process. I try to be honest about the specific things people ask about, and also helpful in terms of specific advice. When ttcers and pregnant folks are talking about their various expectations, I never "correct." That's part of the process. I nod, smile, and provide a listening ear, and every now-and-then throw in a story of my own parenthood or two for balance but not as a direct contrast to what they are saying.

And then I wait for the day to come when they are "in the trenches" and need my support, which often times is in matters unexpected/unanticipated by me.
post #34 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drummer's Wife View Post
I definitely remind them that it goes so quickly! so enjoy each moment (even the crazy ones).

I don't say things that were said to me like, "sleep now while you can" -- b/c 1) often times pregnant women have a hard time sleeping at the end of pregnancy anway, and 2) my babies, while they nursed frequently at night, I was never lacking sleep like people assumed. I quickly learned to nurse while going back to sleep (plus my first baby slept through the night at 10 weeks -- not so much the next 3, but I was never up with a screaming baby for hrs at night).
Those blanket generalizations drove me absolutely nuts. For the back half of my pregnancy, I was sleeping about 3 miserable, restles hours most nights. After birth, it was heaven. The sleeping between nursing was bliss, pure bliss and I felt 100x better then when pregnant.

I don't offer advice because 98% of the advice heaped on us was rather negative and not welcome or requested.

Why is it people seem to want your experiences to be as miserable as theirs was? Or maybe it is a reflection of the type of people I know?

So many people predicted doom and gloom because we were married for more than 10 years prior to DS. Like his arrival was going to shatter our world.

The reality was the first year or so of DS's life was the best ever for both DH and I. It was like a dream. I think back about how we would take walks and DS would be strapped to DH. (DH was a baby-wearing fool, he loved to wear DS)

I talk honestly about how BF was such a challenge in the beginning and how I wished that I would have had a better support system in place for those first few days. And how absolutely wonderful it was once we got going.

And this...

Quote:
Originally Posted by mambera View Post
I tell the truth, which is that it has been so much more fun than I expected/imagined!

I think I was prepared for it to be hard - and it is - but not *harder* than I expected, and it *is* more fun/rewarding than I could have had the capacity to imagine.
post #35 of 36
My standard answer...and the truth...is just a general comment about how motherhood is both much more wonderful AND much harder than I ever expected.

If someone asks specific questions, and I get a strong vibe that they want to have a more in-depth conversation about certain aspects of birth/parenting, etc., then I will give more detailed answers. I try to be honest and realistic, and therefore I try hard to not paint either a glowing picture or a horrific one.
post #36 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caneel View Post
Those blanket generalizations drove me absolutely nuts. For the back half of my pregnancy, I was sleeping about 3 miserable, restles hours most nights. After birth, it was heaven. The sleeping between nursing was bliss, pure bliss and I felt 100x better then when pregnant.
Right on. I was SO HAPPY not to be pregnant anymore. SO HAPPY. And postpartum sleep was, as you say, bliss.

Someone had told me that having an infant was worse in terms of sleep deprivation than 30-hour shifts at the hospital. But it was so not. Not not not, not even close.
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