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MoMs (Mothers of Many) Summer '11

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi, I am new to this group, hope you don't mind me starting a thread, I didn't see a recent one.  I had posted to the last one I could find which was the winter one.


Forgive me for the sour introduction to the thread, I'm losing it a lot these days, this is what I posted in the other thread:



Hi everyone - I've gotten about halfway through reading these posts but I'm running out of time and have to post something....


I'm new to this tribe...just had my 4th babe who is almost 10 weeks old.  I have 2 girls and 2 boys, ages 7,5,2, and 10 weeks.  I have always wanted a large family and I love my kiddies so much, however I am finding myself unable to cope lately with such business.  It's just nonstop from morning till night.  I am just about keeping things moving and everyone fed and bathed but I feel like I'm crumbling.  It's too much.  I am so upset, I feel like a failure as a wife and mother, I can't give enough attention to the older kids and I just feel like a slave.


My dh helps a lot but he has a chronic illness/is disabled and cannot always do as much as he would like to.  Since I stopped going to church last year I lost all but 1 friend who lives locally.  She has helped but she actually lives about 45 minutes away.  I have NO support.  I dread getting up in the morning...it's just going to be another day of slavery.


I'm glad this tribe exists....does anyone else ever feel like this?  What am I going to do????  My dh and I want to have another baby someday but I just don't know if I can handle it.  I can't handle 4.


Thanks for listening mecry.gif

post #2 of 12
So funny, I actually came here to search for some MOM threads because I need some reassurance, some help, some "been there, done that" kind of stuff... So, I probably could have written your post exactly. I just had my 4th child - she's just turned 9 months - and for some reason I just cannot seem to catch up or feel like I'm even remotely on top of things. I am constantly forgetting things, and running late and my house is a perpetual disaster. It isn't that my life with 3 kids was super organized or that I never felt overwhelmed, but this time it has just gone to a new level of chaos! My husband works long hours, travels and is also enrolled in an accounting program online, so it's almost as if he doesn't exist 80 percent of the time. It's almost always overwhelming. I do find myself feeling like a robot, a slave, just constantly meeting demands. I don't like that - it's not how I want to parent. I am afraid of becoming some martyred, resentful person who my children will hate. I was hoping to get some ideas about setting boundaries - firmly, but lovingly - because my old way of parenting just doesn't seem to be working anymore. For example, we Homeschool, so I am really lax about bedtime, but now I feel like there is just NO time that I don't hear "I'm hungry or thirsty or will you play with me or read to me?", etc.... I think this is burnout? So, I haven't helped one bit, but if nothing else, you now know that you are not alone. And, though you can't quite tell from everything that I wrote above, words can't describe how rewarding it is to see them growing up together and being part of a largish family. I actually do think we will have more, but that's what makes it all the more important to learn how parents of many parent and stay sane, lol! So, I'll be watching this thread...

post #3 of 12

I also have 4, and mine are:  turning 7 in October (boy), turned 4 in January (girl), will be 3 in November (boy), and 8 months in just a few days (boy).


I can't really help much either--my mom moved in with us shortly before DS2 was born (age almost 3).  That's a whole 'nother barrel of fun sometimes--other times she's actually very helpful.  (things like it never occured to me back in our first summer in this place that I would actually have to TELL my mother that you need to get up and follow a 2 and 4 year old around and supervise outside.  It's not a house with a private yard, it's apt. complex with many kids.  Hence, since I was unaware for awhile exactly what was going on, they've gotten accustomed to a LOT of freedom.  They're generally pretty good kids, they've got limits and stuff, but try re-enforcing boundaries, ugh)


I agree that the 4th baby is a whole new level of overwhelmed!  And we don't homeschool, but bedtime has gotten totally lax and is now weird because DH just started a night job, so he leaves when they are settled in their rooms but not asleep (Ideally!)  So they know he is gone, and that's led to crap like tonight where FINALLY they were all asleep at MIDNIGHT.  Add to that having had a baby bedsharing the entire time we've lived here pretty much, and both my little boys were cluster nursers at bedtime and crabby right when I need to do everyone else's routine and it just makes me anxious and crazy to hear the fussing and the whining and bargaining from the older ones...yeah.


add to that that I FINALLY got control of some PPD just in the last few months really from DS2 that just got worse after DS3 till recently and yeah, there's a whole lot of fun here....

I too would like to hear how some others do it!

post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by taralv View Post

It's almost always overwhelming. I do find myself feeling like a robot, a slave, just constantly meeting demands. I don't like that - it's not how I want to parent. I am afraid of becoming some martyred, resentful person who my children will hate.....................................but now I feel like there is just NO time that I don't hear "I'm hungry or thirsty or will you play with me or read to me?", etc.... I think this is burnout? So, I haven't helped one bit, but if nothing else, you now know that you are not alone. And, though you can't quite tell from everything that I wrote above, words can't describe how rewarding it is to see them growing up together and being part of a largish family....




OMG I could have written this too lol.  I love having all of these kids, they bring me so much joy and I love them so much, celebrate their individuality and marvel at their togetherness.  I just wish I could show it more instead of feeling like a slave.  


Things have been a little better the past few days...I managed to catch up on some housework, although it is FAR from tidy at any given moment.


Thanks for posting, both of u, I'm sorry that you are having a tough time too though!


post #5 of 12

I just had my 4th as well. I've got 8y DD1, 4.5y old DD2, 2y DS1, and then newborn DS2. I'm done having babies, our house, budget, and sanity level are maxed! I don't HS anymore so I can't comment on that. My issue with schooling is that the girls attend an alternative school 20 minutes away, so no bus service and just doing morning drop off eats an hour out of our day, not to mention the hours we spend in the car going from one thing to another. My Dh works a lot, he sees the small ones less then an hour a day usually and when he is home, he is often is working from home. 



Right now my sitter has been helping out some, I do work part time but will be out of the clinic for a while, I still do some work from home. I have her booked to do the school morning and afternoon run along with the after school activities a couple days a week for a a little while this fall. I'm mainly using my sitter here and there to keep her for that when school starts in 3 weeks. DD1 is on several teams and hours of practices after school isn't the greatest with a new baby.



After reading these posts, I have to say a little scared! Life hasn't resumed to normal after DS2, only a week old. I was super organized with 3, on top of things, and I was hoping the addition of #4 would only throw us for a short while before I got on top of it. Crossing fingers!



post #6 of 12

I don't know what it is about that 4th baby... but, yeah, I've kind of been in a tailspin since I had her. I was talking to my mom, asking her about how my grandmother managed the household when she was growing up (my mom is #2 of 13 kids), and she said that my grandmother was super organized, lots of routine and lots of rules. And of course, EVERYONE had chores and helped with the babies, etc... So, she said that she talked to my grandmother about what I was asking, and my grandmother said, "But she only has four!", lol. I also feel so much less support from friends and family - actually, I feel a complete lack of support and in some cases hostility - in regards to continuing to have children. That's hard. We recently switched churches, and dh does not attend with us (long story), so I go with the kids alone. Sometimes ds(6) or dd(3) will stay with dh, but for the most part they want to come with me. It hasn't gone over well in the new church. I actually chose this church because they have a very family-friendly attitude, they are welcoming to chidren during the service, etc... but apparently, four children is just a little too many. I don't think of four as being a lot of kids, but I get a "you've really got your hands full" or "are those all YOURS?" at least once a day. So, maybe that's what is making me feel overwhelmed. I like to read large family blogs because then I just feel like a normal family with normal chaos, and a normal mom dealing with normal issues of raising kids. So, I guess it's all perspective. Anyway, as I said before, I don't think we are totally done. So for now, I've decided to accept the mess and the disorder and just focus on hanging out with them and enjoying their childhood. And giving myself a break to rest with the baby when I'm exhausted, that helps, too.



post #7 of 12
Hi, everyone! I have 5 kiddos. My oldest is 10 and my youngest is 9 months today. I would have more kids, but dh is DONE. Yes, in all caps. This makes me sad, but it's not my choice to make for us. I can't really complain too much about 5 wonderful kids, right? lol.gif

I feel your pain with a lack of support. We are definitely a larger family than any others we have met in our town, normal for my family (states away), and freakishly large for dh's side of the family. I'm trying to work out a good routine for us lately so that I have enough one on one time with each kid and get enough baby time in. It's hard. Especially with trying to maintain a rigorous homeschooling education for my kids.
post #8 of 12

Is this the newest thread?  I hope we can revive this tribe, because I really need some support!  I have 8 kiddos, 14 yo ds, 12 yo dd, 9 yo ds, 7 yo ds, 5 yo ds, 3 yo dd, and 6 mo twin dds.  DH works full time, with a 1hr commute each way, plus is in school full time.  My kids do not see their father from Sunday night until Friday afternoon.  It's just me at home.  I have no friends in this town.  Lots of acquaintances, but no one that I could call up and just chat about my day or grab a cup of coffee with.  I'm really introverted and feel forward to try to create that kind of relationship.  Plus, this town is one of those types if you aren't from here, you're never from here, ya know?  We've lived here 8 years now, and we barely know anyone.  I got ahold of a plat map from 150 years ago, and the same names of landholders then are alive and well today.  It's really weird and isolating.  I had joined a Moms group at one time, but I got tired of being the only one to show up to things, or only one person would show when I hosted.  I finally quit because it just made me feel more isolated and lonely.  My family all live states away.  My dh has relatives fairly close, but the only one of our generation is his brother who is immature with anger management issues and no kids (thank goodness).  His mom lives only 15 min and is great about watching the kids when we need it.  We try not to abuse that privilege.  My dh and I are truly best friends and have a wonderful marriage, thank goodness, cause I think the loneliness otherwise might kill me.  


We are planning to try to sell the house and move to the same city dh works in, but I'm trying not to freak out about how to sell a house with 10 people living in it.  We have no storage in this house and it's rather a nightmare.  I'm considering moving and then putting it on the market empty.  We would qualify for rent assistance and we'd probably be able to swing the rent plus mortgage for a few months.  There's a realtor who has a sell in 3 mo or we buy your house plan.  I don't care how much we sell for.  We owe little enough that we should be able to recoup our investment.  I just need to get OUT of this town.  Plus, we would save money on gas and dh would be home earlier and wouldn't have to leave at the crack of dawn.  


I'm really quite happy with our family otherwise.  The kids are wonderful for the most part, though I could use some ideas to deal with 12 yo dd.  Such a difficult age.  Also, my house and the storage problem totally stress me OUT.  There are whole rooms I just avoid for perhaps a week at a time because I can't handle the work that needs to be done.  The twins keep me up most nights so I am just too exhausted to deal with a lot of housework.  Even if I wasn't, I'm nursing constantly.  I do have chores that the kids are in charge of so basic things get done.  I have a set up where they can earn extra spending money by completing anything on a long list of items, too.  I just always feel behind and mortified if someone were to drop by the house. (Just a moment ago, our Principal stopped by to drop off extra venison hot dogs she couldn't eat just as I was typing this.  Oy.)  I am one who cannot feel relaxed in the midst of chaos, so when it is too bad I retreat to my room, and the kids make it worse.  Yikes.  


Sorry for the big vent, but I just need somewhere to share my struggles and perhaps brainstorm solutions to the unique challenges of having so many children with such a wide span of ages.  I'm also wondering if there are enough people who still are interested in this tribe to perhaps look into a Social Group so we could expand threads on related topics in a useful way and get to know one another better. And I really need some adult conversation!!  :)

post #9 of 12
It's good to see some people posting on this thread. Kittywitty, I also struggle with finding time to give to each child individually, especially now tht our summer break is over and we are starting school again. I feel committed to homeschooling, but it certainly is a challenge, and sometimes I worry that I'm not doing "enough". Mylilmonkeys, I can absolutely relate to the isolation that you describe. We moved two years ago from a very small town that was a lot like the town you are living in. It was like pulling teeth to try to make friends! We also lived in a mountainous area on a dirt road, so it was almost impossible to get to know our neighors. And DH had an hour long commute to work as well. I was relieved when we were moved to Texas (although the heat this summer has jut about done me in), so I think a move might help in your situation as well. We are in a city now, and the kids really love being able to go outside and ride their bikes with other kids in the neighborhood. Of course, we had to trade some of the privacy of rural life, and I do miss that sometimes, but I feel a lot less lonely here. So, good luck with the move. If our experience has taught me anything, it's that it is much easier to sell a house once the kiddos (and all the stuff) is out. That will probably be your best bet.

post #10 of 12

Thank you, Tara!  It's nice to 'meet' you.  How many kids and what ages do you have?

I appreciate the encouragement about moving.  I think we will just pick up and leave at the end of this school year.  I have faith that the details will work themselves out.  I can't keep the place picked up suitably to sell while we live here.  The hard part will be finding a rental that will accept 8 kids.  But, we'll deal with that as it comes.  

post #11 of 12
Hi, mylilmonkeys. I have four children, ages 10, 7, 3, and 10 months. I can only imagine that your stress load is about twice what I have? I have said before that I don't feel like four is "a lot", but then I look at my house and I think differently, lol. I just found out that my daughter's girl scout troop will be meeting in the parents' houses this year instead of the community center, and we will all take turns hosting the meeting. That puts fear into my heart! But, what can you do? I'll clean up as bet I can and that will be that. So, anyway, I really understand your dilemma with the upcoming move. I had a lady from our church when we were living in New Mexico tell me that she had six children, and whenever they had to move she always moved out first and then put the house on the market. At the time, I only had one child, but I have never forgotten what she said. We have had to move several times with my husband's work, and each time it has become more challenging. Of course, we are able to get corporare housing for a month or two, and that is so helpful. Otherwise we would have to find a temporary rental for sure. One that accepts dogs. When do you plan to move?

post #12 of 12

It looks like we will be moving in June.  The current plan is that we will move out.  When the school year is over, my dad (who is substitute teaching now) will ride out and help us finish drywalling, painting and whatever else we decide to finish before listing, and we will put the house on the market as is.  I'm not concerned about maxing profits or anything.  I just want to be out of here and pay off first and second mortgages, which should be perfectly doable even if the house is unfinished as we have it.  Dh is nervous that we won't be able to afford a rental, but I think it'll work out.  I have already checked into rental assistance, we'll just have to apply next spring.  We shouldn't have to pay more than our current mortgages, really.  It's incredible how much better I feel since I have a more concrete move out "date".  


Dh was over at a coworker's house last week.  He's helping him with a school assignment.  There is a 4-bedroom for rent next door that would be really nice.  Too bad we couldn't move now, but I don't want to interrupt the kids' school year.  

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