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moms of larger families, does this ever bother you? - Page 2

post #21 of 100
Maybe it feels like you're telling them not to complain by "one-upping" them? There's nothing more annoying than the person who responds to venting with the equivalent of "you should be grateful you have it so easy!"

That said, I'd never whine to a mama of many about my lack of down time.
post #22 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by momo7 View Post
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. It depends. It irks me sometimes that a mom who works a full time job will still send her child to day care even on the days she has off just to hang out and go shopping or get a nail appointment then complain in the same breath they never have time to do ANYTHING.
Maybe that mom works for my cousin's boss, who is a stickler about all employees looking perfectly groomed and perfectly dressed at all times, if said employees want to keep their jobs.
post #23 of 100
Ummmm..no. I am using a specific example from personal experience.
post #24 of 100
To answer the first question, no it wouldn't bother me. Each person is entitled to their own experience. I can't imagine the ladies' complaints were a slight on you. No need to try to one up them.

I had a very difficult time with my first two babies. I just never seemed to be able to find the right daily rythym. With three and four, we never missed a beat. They were no more trouble at all. With 3 or more little ones, things are logistically more difficult but IME day to day life is much easier now that we have 4.

Mothering is a hard job but very rewarding no matter how many children you have.
post #25 of 100
I never intended to have more than 2 kids and nearly only had 1 because he was, and continues to be, so challenging. I am such a small family oriented person that the idea that people would actually choose to have more than 2 kids always bends my mind. I think you are all amazing!!!!

OP: Personally, I would get irked by comments that I didn't have a right to vent about a rough day or even a rough period of my life simply because I had chosen a certain path. I tend to get different sorts of comments because triplets don't usually look like a choice, and I do get irritated by the people who think that they have no right to complain about their one kid when they see me with my four.

I usually try to take the "I'd be tired if I were you" kind of comments as a form of sympathy. I find that people who are overwhelmed with one or two kids (and I was one, so I totally empathize) just can't grasp the kinds of changes that go into making life possible with more, so they don't have enough understanding to empathize.
post #26 of 100
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heavenly View Post
Well, I have 3 kids, which I don't consider a large family but I did want to add one comment. You are talking as if all moms of more than 2 kids don't get time to themselves and that their lives are consumed by children. I think that is a choice. I make a choice that my ME time is of just as much importance as my time with the children. I go out by myself at least a few times a week or I would go nuts. Even if it is just to go wander the mall alone and pick up a few items or go to a movie with a friend it regenerates me. I know not everyone has a partner but I believe a lot of moms (especially AP moms) martyr themselves. That is not necessary to be a good parent IMO.
I'm just talking as a mom of three whose military husband is frequently gone for periods of time that have exceeded a year. Try being alone with three kids under five for months on end. You don't know much of anyone nearby because you just moved for the fourth time in as many years, your nearest family member lives more than a thousand miles away, and even though you have posted want ads and put up flyers everywhere you still have yet to find a babysitter. You can "think it's a choice" to spend all my time with my children and not "go out by myself at least a few times a week" but not everyone is lucky enough to have the option to get out. I can't express how much I would enjoy getting out to "wander the mall" but I just don't get to. Even when DH is home I can seldom leave since he has to stay nearby in case he's called in. Plus, he's in training and needs time in the evenings to study.

Not all attachment parents are martyrs, as you say, some of us just don't have the luxury of time that you seem to.
post #27 of 100
I only read a few of the replies.... but I'll just add that we all have our challenges, and each of our lives are very different because of it. I'm a single mom of one, and because of my personal circumstances there is a lot more to deal with than what one might assume. I agree that we should not try to play the "oh I've got it worse" card because we each only have our own experiences that we actually know. It doesn't matter what is more difficult because in reality there is no way to measure this unless you factor in everything.

Is parenting more than one child more difficult than parenting 2,3 or 4? I'm sure it is. But what about the joys of parenting 2,3, or 10? Each of us has made the choice to parent the number of children we are (not to be insensitive to those with angels) and comparison isn't helpful in any manner. What is helpful is to show compassion, and to not take it personally. I like the idea of the poster who suggested turning the conversation into a positive direction. If a mom of a single child complains, it's valid in her world. You can always say, "You should have seen DC1 and DC3 together this morning, it was so adorable when....."
post #28 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
I'm just talking as a mom of three whose military husband is frequently gone for periods of time that have exceeded a year. Try being alone with three kids under five for months on end. You don't know much of anyone nearby because you just moved for the fourth time in as many years, your nearest family member lives more than a thousand miles away, and even though you have posted want ads and put up flyers everywhere you still have yet to find a babysitter. You can "think it's a choice" to spend all my time with my children and not "go out by myself at least a few times a week" but not everyone is lucky enough to have the option to get out. I can't express how much I would enjoy getting out to "wander the mall" but I just don't get to. Even when DH is home I can seldom leave since he has to stay nearby in case he's called in. Plus, he's in training and needs time in the evenings to study.

Not all attachment parents are martyrs, as you say, some of us just don't have the luxury of time that you seem to.
ITA. I'm also a military spouse, with four boys ranging in age from 10 to 2, very few friends nearby (and no family around either), and my DH is deployed. The only reason I have any alone time is that I was able to find a part time sitter who comes to my home two mornings per week so that I can get out for doctor appointments, grocery shopping etc. (through SitterCity, which is now a free service for military). I constantly hear the "you have your hands full" and "how do you do it?" types of comments, which get to be pretty irritating because I both enjoy my kids and am managing quite well. I also find that having a larger-than-average family is somewhat isolating because I'm always busy with either the kids or household cleaning/management and thus do not have many socialization opportunities. I try to take it all in stride and remember that being able to have so many kids is a blessing in and of itself.
post #29 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tizzy View Post
I really and truly believe that one child is a LOT more work than two or more.
My kids spend a lot of time entertaining each other and playing together. But when I just had one, all he had was mom to keep him entertained. And he is even a very independent child who would play by himself a lot! So I can't imagine having a normal to needy child without any live-in playmates.

I also believe that complainers tend to run in groups. And once one person starts, the rest just follow and it's contagious. With my group of friends, we actively try to not complain about our husbands or children. We all have wonderful partners and children, there is no reason for us to have a whine fest whenever we talk to each other. Sure, we'll vent on occasion, but we do not spur each other on, instead we offer supportive words and actions. But not all groups are like that! It's really easy to get sucked into.
I agree with this. I grew up in a family of 11 and honestly, I felt it was easier with more kids. My parents often said the same thing. Especially as the 1st set gets older, they are able to babysit while the parents go on dates for example.

Having one kid is killing me. DD and I can't stay at home for more than an hour before we want to go at each other's throats.

I also think you should either get in there and complain away or recognize that 1 kid might be harder than all your kids combined. I've seen many temperaments...and some kids I wouldn't wish on even the strongest mamas!
post #30 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by claddaghmom View Post
I agree with this. I grew up in a family of 11 and honestly, I felt it was easier with more kids. My parents often said the same thing. Especially as the 1st set gets older, they are able to babysit while the parents go on dates for example.

Having one kid is killing me. DD and I can't stay at home for more than an hour before we want to go at each other's throats.

I also think you should either get in there and complain away or recognize that 1 kid might be harder than all your kids combined. I've seen many temperaments...and some kids I wouldn't wish on even the strongest mamas!
Thank you for that perspective. I feel bad sometimes if I complain because I am a mom of 1. I always assume that it is more difficult with many. And I'm sure for a time it is. But it is hard being my DD's everything all the time too, and the only way I can get a break is for her to nap (which I don't really count as a break cuz I have to be quiet and can't do things that I want or need to as a result), or hire a babysitter. Otherwise it's all me all the time. Not to derail the thread, I just wanted to say I appreciated what you said.
post #31 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Theia View Post
Thank you for that perspective. I feel bad sometimes if I complain because I am a mom of 1. I always assume that it is more difficult with many.
I find it more difficult with many, but there are a lot of factors involved. My sister and I never fought until I hit puberty. I honestly don't remember a single squabble, and neither do my mom or sister. DD1 and ds2, otoh, play together really well sometimes...and are at each other's throats other days. DS2 is honestly more work than the other three combined, in many ways. I'd totally get any parent who had just him and complained about how hard it was, yk?

OTOH, I had a completely unplanned 10 year gap between one and two...so I've almost always had a "built-in babysitter" (we do try not to abuse the privilege...and he gets paid for some of it). In that respect, I have it much easier than many parents of one child, because I can go out on my own if I have to...at least at certain times of the day, but those times are less restricted than if I only had dh to spell me, yk?

I think anyone who is having a hard time is entitled to vent. Rearing children is hard work...and can be incredibly emotionally draining.
post #32 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyndmamaof4 View Post
I agree with a lot of what's been said on both sides of this discussion.."I did this to myself"...etc yeah, yeah, yeah..whatev...I have 4 kids, one after the other..4 kids in 6 years ...just because I chose to have a larger family than some, doesn't mean that I can't have a bad day too...everyone needs time to vent and have a bit of sympathy for themselves.
Yup, I've heard that before. You can't be unhappy or struggle with your children because you wanted them. I'm an IVF mom of twins and because my children are wanted I've never struggled a day in their lives. Never been frustrated with them, never had a messy house or an unbalanced meal. My children are always neat and clean and well dressed and socially acceptable. They never fuss or whine or have different needs than mine.

Oh wait a minute- that is my fantasy life. My ivf kids are just as wonderful and awful as my non-ivf kids and the need to admit that frustration is just as strong!
post #33 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumm View Post
Yup, I've heard that before. You can't be unhappy or struggle with your children because you wanted them. I'm an IVF mom of twins and because my children are wanted I've never struggled a day in their lives. Never been frustrated with them, never had a messy house or an unbalanced meal. My children are always neat and clean and well dressed and socially acceptable. They never fuss or whine or have different needs than mine.

Oh wait a minute- that is my fantasy life. My ivf kids are just as wonderful and awful as my non-ivf kids and the need to admit that frustration is just as strong!
I am not an IVF mom but that is totally my fantasy too. Doesn't hurt a mom to dream! Life is messy and loud and completely wonderful (most of the time)
post #34 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumm View Post
Yup, I've heard that before. You can't be unhappy or struggle with your children because you wanted them. I'm an IVF mom of twins and because my children are wanted I've never struggled a day in their lives. Never been frustrated with them, never had a messy house or an unbalanced meal. My children are always neat and clean and well dressed and socially acceptable. They never fuss or whine or have different needs than mine.

Oh wait a minute- that is my fantasy life. My ivf kids are just as wonderful and awful as my non-ivf kids and the need to admit that frustration is just as strong!
But see, that is such a lame excuse! As the OP mentioned, she feels she can't complain b/c she has 3 kids, as opposed to 1 or 2.

Well, does that mean all those mamas who had 1 or 2 had unwanted or accidental pregnancies? Otherwise they have to shut their traps, too, as they asked for it, right?

lol!
post #35 of 100
I think parenting is hard for everyone. I think some people are natural complainers and some are not. Sometimes you catch people on good days and sometimes you catch them on bad days.

I don't think my friend with one severely physically and developmentally delayed has it easier than my friend who has three kids. I know parents of 4+ kids who find parenting relatively easy and fulfilling and parents of one who struggle just to get through every day.

Personally, I would just offer sympathy and an ear to a mom who felt overwhelmed, and not worry about who has it "harder" than anyone else. Every mother's struggles are real and valid to HER.
post #36 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soul-O View Post
I constantly hear the "you have your hands full" and "how do you do it?" types of comments, which get to be pretty irritating because I both enjoy my kids and am managing quite well.
I love reading this board because everyone's honest posts really open my mind and heart and make me rethink so many things.

I only have one child, but even before I had children, my sister already had 4. And was very involved with her church. And was studying to be a pharmacist. I have to admit that I am sure I said to her on more than one occasion something along the lines of "you have your hands full" or "I don't know how you do it," though I NEVER meant it in any other way that "OMG, you're freaking awesome and strong" because I simply assumed having 4 children would require a lot of time and strength and ingenuity and balance and on and on. Does that make sense? The comment was really a reflection of me thinking I would never be as qualified to do all of that and in praise of the amazing woman I think she is.

It never occurred to me that I was somehow de-valuing what she was doing or how she was doing it. I can only hope she didn't take it that way I guess.
post #37 of 100
I am expecting #3 in in four years, and I have lots of friends who have four or more. Interestingly enough, (don't hate me), but I do kind of think that having more kiddos voids your right to complain as much. Honestly, I think that first or even second kiddo is so difficult that most moms know that more then that would make life VERY hard which is why they choose not to go there.

I have one friend who has four under eight. She is always talking about how "crazy" things are and about how she never has a moment to herself. It just irritates me a little. I always think... "Well, duh?!" I mean, she totally knew what was going to happen, and it is like she just wants everyone else to know just how hard it is.

I figure that if you have a bigger family it is because you must love the business, craziness, and selfless life a little bit more or you would not have made those choices. It is kind of like I don't want to hear anyone who owns a huge SUV complaining about how much gas is takes or someone who takes on too many responsibilities in their social life complain about how they are so busy.
post #38 of 100
Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
I'm just talking as a mom of three whose military husband is frequently gone for periods of time that have exceeded a year. Try being alone with three kids under five for months on end. You don't know much of anyone nearby because you just moved for the fourth time in as many years, your nearest family member lives more than a thousand miles away, and even though you have posted want ads and put up flyers everywhere you still have yet to find a babysitter. You can "think it's a choice" to spend all my time with my children and not "go out by myself at least a few times a week" but not everyone is lucky enough to have the option to get out. I can't express how much I would enjoy getting out to "wander the mall" but I just don't get to. Even when DH is home I can seldom leave since he has to stay nearby in case he's called in. Plus, he's in training and needs time in the evenings to study.

Not all attachment parents are martyrs, as you say, some of us just don't have the luxury of time that you seem to.
Thank you for saying this. I am one who really doesn't seem to want time away beyond the hour laying in bed watching lame TV with my sleeping kids (and I certainly don't consider myself a "martyr" and really dislike people saying a mother who doesn't spend time away from her children is martyring herself) but really, my dh is military as well. He was gone for 75% of the last year (and it was a non-deployment year) and when he is "home" he is working at least 100 hours a week. I do have two friends who I can leave my boys with if I need to, but I certainly wouldn't ask a friend to watch all four of my kids once or twice a week so I could go be alone. I mean, it's great that some people are able to just go out and leave their children a few times a week if that's what they need, but it is truly ridiculous to assume that all mothers are able to or even have the desire to.
post #39 of 100
Quote:
I'm just talking as a mom of three whose military husband is frequently gone for periods of time that have exceeded a year. Try being alone with three kids under five for months on end. You don't know much of anyone nearby because you just moved for the fourth time in as many years, your nearest family member lives more than a thousand miles away, and even though you have posted want ads and put up flyers everywhere you still have yet to find a babysitter. You can "think it's a choice" to spend all my time with my children and not "go out by myself at least a few times a week" but not everyone is lucky enough to have the option to get out. I can't express how much I would enjoy getting out to "wander the mall" but I just don't get to. Even when DH is home I can seldom leave since he has to stay nearby in case he's called in. Plus, he's in training and needs time in the evenings to study.

Not all attachment parents are martyrs, as you say, some of us just don't have the luxury of time that you seem to.
I don't think that anyone is saying that your situation would be easy. I think you might have misconstrued the *choice* folks might think about you having. You certainly do not have a choice in you effort to find a sitter, but you did have a choice to have three kids CIA (which makes life a lot harder). You also did so knowing what you situation could be. I think that is all people are saying.... folks make choices to make their lives a certain way (in this case the more work and less free time that having three little ones brings) and then complain about how difficult it is.

I think that someone complaining about 1 or 2 really could be having a very difficult time because maybe they didn't *get* just how hard it was going to be, but a mom of three kids CIA really can't complain too much. You can't buy a big house and then complain about the money and time it takes to clean and heat it (or if you do people will wonder why you bought the house in the first place and might be annoyed by you complaining about it).
post #40 of 100
There is so much variance in expectations and experience. There are so many areas to experiences these variations: external support, wilingness to ask for help when it is needed or wanted, employment, partner participation, child behavior, our own desires and needs, financial/emotional/physical reserves going in, and more. It really is hard to judge another's experience no matter how similar it is to our own. What matter is how one perceives their own situation.
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