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Why do I find being a mom so hard??

post #1 of 53
Thread Starter 
I have a 3yr ds and a 9mo dd and everyday is so hard for me. DD is always in arms and nursing day and night and ds is just so active and trying. I try so hard to be patient and loving but I fail everyday. I wake in the morning with a mantra Patience/Peace/Presence....I have great intentions on being patient with the ongoing whining from both of them and the constant "Mommy mommy mommy" but by 8am I am already gritting my teeth and getting angry. I want to be that zen mom but I can't and everynight I go to bed feeling like such a failure. How can I be so bad at mothering when I love them with all my soul??? I don't know how to be more patient and peaceful...what can I do??
post #2 of 53


I only have one DS (13mo), but I can say that being a mom is so so so hard! It's the best job in the world, but its still hard.

Can you find some time to yourself each day? Once a week? That might help!
post #3 of 53
A 3 year old is definitely a toddler, and a 9 month old is a baby limpet trying to learn how to be a toddler. And toddlers will make you pull your hair out and running screaming into the street.

The question is not so much why you're in a position where you feel like you're a bad parent (which you aren't) but what brand of chocolate is good enough to have kept you from needing to vent about this before?

What is your support system like? Could your 3 year old go to "camp grandma" or "camp auntie" a few hours a week? Do you have a dp who could step up the amount of direct parenting s/he's doing? Any chance of doing a baby-sitting trade off with another mama?

Could you afford a "mother's helper" from time to time?

I don't know, something so that when your 9 month old actually naps you can have a kid-free break at least sometimes.
post #4 of 53
I personally am not a "Zen" mama. I can't just be calm and collected. I only have one 14 month old , so I can't relate to having two, but I can tell you what helps me with one. Whenever she's wild I just get wild with her. I chase her around the house, act silly and rough house. I don't mind a little chaos. It's when I try to be a calm mommy that I get frustrated. If my dd is driving me up the wall I get really silly and say"You're driving me up the wall!" then I tickle her or something. My house is not going to be peaceful, but it can be fun!
post #5 of 53
Thread Starter 
Sapphire Chan...the thing is is that I do get breaks. I go to bootcamp twice a week for an hour and on the weekends I usually do a 2-3 hour grocery/mall shop while dh takes the kids. I feel great while I am out and miss them terribly but as soon as I walk in the door the whining and crying starts and the calmness disappears. They are both just so hard right now and no matter how many breaks or glasses of wine I get, the minute all hell breaks loose I loose my cool. I feel so drained and sad right now. I don't want this time to go away, and I want to enjoy it but everyday passes so quickly with so much anger and stress
post #6 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by kdescalzi View Post
Sapphire Chan...the thing is is that I do get breaks. I go to bootcamp twice a week for an hour and on the weekends I usually do a 2-3 hour grocery/mall shop while dh takes the kids. I feel great while I am out and miss them terribly but as soon as I walk in the door the whining and crying starts and the calmness disappears. They are both just so hard right now and no matter how many breaks or glasses of wine I get, the minute all hell breaks loose I loose my cool. I feel so drained and sad right now. I don't want this time to go away, and I want to enjoy it but everyday passes so quickly with so much anger and stress
I am right here with you on this. My 3 yo is crazy smart and he is driving me insane! My DD is 12 months now- at 9 mo she was very, very clingy all day- turns out she was hitting a milestone and teething, and it did get better- but it took a while! I am also expecting number 3 and I have NO idea how I am going to cope- I hope he loves the wrap and to be carried all the time- cause I don't think we will make it other wise. I am looking into a local socialization/group activity program at the rec center for 3 yo DS, so that some of his intensity is directed at other people than just us all the time.
post #7 of 53
Because it is hard. It can be a long, thankless slog a lot of the time. Hang in there.
post #8 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by zinemama View Post
Because it is hard. It can be a long, thankless slog a lot of the time. Hang in there.
Yes, that's it right there. Constant patience and presence (forget the peace) for two under 5 IMO requires an enormous amount of emotional and mental energy. Even good days can leave me feeling like a wrung-out sponge.
post #9 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by kdescalzi View Post
Sapphire Chan...the thing is is that I do get breaks. I go to bootcamp twice a week for an hour and on the weekends I usually do a 2-3 hour grocery/mall shop while dh takes the kids. I feel great while I am out and miss them terribly but as soon as I walk in the door the whining and crying starts
that can't possibly be helping you relax while you're out.

Whining is one of the worst sounds. I have no idea how we survived as a species with our young producing that noise. (Or why so many singers whine and mumble through their songs, I'm looking at YOU Kings of Leon (but I digress...))

What you might find helpful for your returns home anyway, is to take a bit of time before you walk in the door to try to center and accept the moment to come. Sort of "when I walk in the door I will be needed, I love my children and I will be there for them". 5 more minutes away won't make them any more clingy, but might make you better able to handle it.

And laying with your face in a pillow and screaming is also remarkably soothing.
post #10 of 53


If it was easy, it wouldn't be worth doing.

I don't know the answer. I am not a very zen person. I am not patient and loving all the time and if I expected myself to be I would be insane and crazy. I am making a conscious effort to be honest with myself and with DD about what my boundaries are. When I am angry I express my anger, but I do make an effort to communicate in a constructive and respectful way. I'm trying to teach DD to do so as well; she is a smart and loving girl and fully capable of being co-operative member of the family.

Parenting is a marathon not a sprint....it's supposed to be a tough job, if rewarding. Don't beat yourself up for not being Mary Poppins 24/7.
post #11 of 53
I hope this comes out sounding right...kinda hard through internet speak....but I read a sad story when I get into that mode. I was just reading a blog about a little girl who is dying of cancer.

http://laylagrace.org/

"Towards the end of a pregnancy, a mother will wake up to go to the bathroom every few hours. I think this is the body’s way of preparing you for a newborn and the sleepless nights that come along with it. Layla now spends most of her days sleeping. 30-45 minutes after she wakes up, she is ready to lay down and sleep a...gain. Is this God’s way of preparing me for all the quiet time that is coming soon?"

I was having a bad day that day, when someone emailed me Layla's story. I had a good bawl and then curled up w/ DD and hugged her tight.

Saying "this too shall pass" a thousand times a day sometimes helps, too.
post #12 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
Whining is one of the worst sounds. I have no idea how we survived as a species with our young producing that noise.
I think I want to frame that and put it on my wall. So true.

OP, mine are 3.5 and 6 months. It's HARD. I'm not zen either. I've recently started taking fish oil, and I think it has me lossing my temper less. Of course, it hasn't stopped the whining.
post #13 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by kdescalzi View Post
Sapphire Chan...the thing is is that I do get breaks. I go to bootcamp twice a week for an hour and on the weekends I usually do a 2-3 hour grocery/mall shop while dh takes the kids. I feel great while I am out and miss them terribly but as soon as I walk in the door the whining and crying starts and the calmness disappears. They are both just so hard right now and no matter how many breaks or glasses of wine I get, the minute all hell breaks loose I loose my cool. I feel so drained and sad right now. I don't want this time to go away, and I want to enjoy it but everyday passes so quickly with so much anger and stress
It is the same way here! You are not alone!!!! My sons are 3 and 10 months and its so hard some days...Dont really have any advice, just want you to know someone else feels like you do.
post #14 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nina_yyc View Post


If it was easy, it wouldn't be worth doing.

Parenting is a marathon not a sprint....it's supposed to be a tough job, if rewarding. Don't beat yourself up for not being Mary Poppins 24/7.
So well said! You are not alone, and somehow, things do get better. I have no advice, other than to not be too hard on yourself.
post #15 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by kdescalzi View Post
I have a 3yr ds and a 9mo dd and everyday is so hard for me. DD is always in arms and nursing day and night and ds is just so active and trying. I try so hard to be patient and loving but I fail everyday. I wake in the morning with a mantra Patience/Peace/Presence....I have great intentions on being patient with the ongoing whining from both of them and the constant "Mommy mommy mommy" but by 8am I am already gritting my teeth and getting angry. I want to be that zen mom but I can't and everynight I go to bed feeling like such a failure. How can I be so bad at mothering when I love them with all my soul??? I don't know how to be more patient and peaceful...what can I do??
I read your question and then the bolded part and there's your answer. 3 is /hard/. 9 months is /hard/. Together must be very hard (no experience here).

Keep trying, but be kind to yourself. It will get better. Also, do you get breaks?
post #16 of 53
The only "zen" parents I know are either really rich or live near a lot of extended family. And even then, I bet they act more zen than they feel.

Don't worry, you aren't alone. As far as advice goes, I have none. Except be nice to yourself. It is okay to be frustrated, to not always like being a mom, and to dread walking in the door because you know whining and clinging is coming. And it doesn't mean you love your children any less.
post #17 of 53
I only have one so I don't know what it's like caring for two. Not that I would describe myself as zen, but I do really want to be present for DS- I want to go along for the ride with him. So, while I certainly have to do stuff, get stuff done, I try to not get worked up about the things that don't matter, get silly with him and when we are playing something (no matter how boring it might seem!) I 'try' to be as involved as I can. Sometimes watching him play out stuff can be very enlightening.

When I find myself getting irritated/annoyed, I 'try' to remember to take a deep breath, remind myself that this is DS's childhood- he is figuring out the world and also there is always a reason for behavior. If I can remeber to stop and think for a few secs, I can usually get back to how I want to be. But, sometimes, I don't take the time to think and get upset/overreact...and end up feeling terrible about my choice.
post #18 of 53
my DD was three when my DS was born. At first I felt like you but after watching my cousin with five kids I learned a few things. Also life experience showed me too that all planing does is set you up for failure and dissapointment. All that worrying about petty things does is make you crazy. Let your kids be kids. If that means doing things that make you cringe look the other way if it's safe and the only negative outcome is a mess to clean up. At the end of the day when the kids are sleeping and can't make a mess behind me that's when I undo the chaos of the day. You will learn how to tune out the whining. If your kids get no reaction they will eventually give up. I just let my kids know that I don't speak whining language and have no translator available. Teach them to entertain themselves. Right know your kids are a bit young and it's hard. That won't last long though. Pretty soon they will be relying on eachother for entertainment not you. Don't sweat the small stuff. In order to do this you have to muster up all the faith you can and know that everything is what it is and thats just fine.
post #19 of 53
It made me laugh to see all the references to whether or not we're able to be "Zen" parents. I actually practice Zen pretty seriously (with daily meditation, going to occasional retreats, etc) and my 10mo is still driving me up the wall lately. I guess having a personal meditation practice does help, at least for me, but motherhood is still HARD!
post #20 of 53
I'm just going to throw this out there. Maybe it's stupid, maybe you've tried it, maybe this doesn't fit at all. But it''ll be out there in the universe and it may help someone. Leave your expectations and schedule at the door. Easy right? Harder than you think. I have 3 little girls 9, 5, and 2 and I am single. Sound hard? It is. But I get breaks and their dad is really understanding and appreciative of the hard work I put in with them surprisingly enough. But the thing is, I am a type A personality and it's not compatible with AP parenting. I try to schedule my kids and keep everyone on track and micromanage them. And it's not right. I find that our easiest days are the ones when we eat when hungry, sleep when tired, play, lounge around all day, and have nothing to do. When I am not thinking about when I have to do this or that or toss in a diaper laundry or get to the grocery store or squeeze in some exercise between snack and nap, etc. Those are the good days. When I am literally in the moment all.day.long. And it's harder than you think. But when you are focused on nothing but the kids and their needs, they are better behaved, you are more relaxed, and when they do get a nap or dad comes home and takes them to the bathtub, you will enjoy it more. You won't get that whining screaming moment when they come back to you that makes you freak out. I think it's just all about leaving the expectations of the day behind and letting everything flow. I will never be that "zen" mama that you want(and I want) but I have learned to control my temper at least 80% of the time and sigh and let go when I see the grocery shopping trip go out the window even when we are basically scrounging for food.

It's not easy. This is the hardest job in the world with the WORST bosses in the world and it doesn't get easier for many many years. But it's oh so worth it!
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