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me and the kids struggling with this...

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Daddy has been gone since June 2011.  I can say that I am very happy with my decision to end our relationship, since I realized I was not in love with him and that he will never make me happy.  I stayed in the relationship because of my girls, they are both daddy's girls and I thought I could do it for them.  Not so much, I love my kids but I also love myself and know I can do better.  We had some problems, since my ex, is addicted to gambling so it was the perfect excuse for me not to hurt him by telling him I don't love him.

We told the kids that mommy and daddy decided not to live in the same house, because we were not getting along, but that they will always have mom and dad as a family that do not live in the same house.  They didnt say much, probably because they really dont understand at their young age.  We have had some difficult nights where they cry for daddy but for the most part I thought they were handling it well...  not so much anymore.  They have changed their behavior greatly, they cry and whine all day long over anything(not daddy related) and my oldest(4yo) is scared of everything. She wont go the bathroom without asking her sister(2 1/2yo) to go with her.  She wont go anywhere in the house without me or her sister. She claims to be scare of the "wolf" and also thinks her toys may come alive (Thanks Toy Story).   They both sleep with me, and every night we argue because they both want the middle, they both want my ears, someone always have some sort of bed related issue.  Well, my patience is running low.  I know this is super hard on them, and feel all the behavior (even though age-appropiate) has to do with our separation (no divorce since we never married).  He visits often, not on a regular schedule, but at the very least he seems them 3 days every week.  They have had 2 sleepovers at his house, but its more of me having let go issues.  My struggle is that they are whining, crying, not listening and acting like brats, and I want to be patient, but I am not...  I am turning into the mother I dont want to be, yelling and loosing my temper, I hate to be this way, and my kids dont deserve it.  I pray to God I can stop being so irritable all the time, I dont know what is wrong with me lately.  All I do is cry, because I'm not being the mom I want to be.  In all honesty I am not enjoying my time with them, they annoy me and I need help.  Its not fair to them, that I have a short fuse...  I pray for PATIENCE!!!  

I am in school full time, the kids have been in daycare since I started school 2yrs ago and my mom lives with me.  Her constant criticism as far as how I'm ruining my kids relationship with me, is really bothering me, she has stepped up and is helping me with the girls a little more.  Sometimes they prefer "abu" over me, it breaks my heart.  I wonder if I'm depressed even though I feel happy.  I dont want to be with him, that is for sure.  He keeps wanting to come back to the house, but I am 100% of my decision.  

 

Thanks for reading this far, I really needed to get some thoughts out of my head, and maybe someone out there, can advise me of how to help me be a happy mom again and how to help the kids cope with our new situation better, and maybe we can all be happy campers again!!!  

 

post #2 of 9

I relate to so much of what you have written. My 3yo has a lot of those fears going on right now, so I'm not sure if it's the situation or just the age. But she cries for dad a lot. That's really hard. But I admire how sure you are of the decision. I wish I had some great advice and I will be watching to see what others offer.

 

I pray for patience all the time but it was soooo hard when they were that age and doing it alone can be so hard. Also, i think them preferring a grandparent doesn't say anything about you. Actually it may say mor eabout how grandma is not in the parenting role. I always loved being with my grandparents and grandparents don't have to be enforcers the way we do so it's a more rosy relationship (often).

 

It would be horrible to have your mom criticizing your parenting while being there all the time. I think that's what would get to me the most. It's so hard to handle as it is and what you need is support. Is there any way to change the living set up?

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Sometimes I feel it would be better to go live on my own with the kids, but she does help with bills and makes our dinner every day. We need to stay with her until I finish school in two years.  

Thanks for replying, I'm sleepless tonight and looking for ways of handling my anger and bad temper.   I need to find an alternative to yelling, because is making me miserable....  

post #4 of 9

Sounds like SUCH a hard time...so hard to stay strong.  I am in the midst of a terrible custody fight and lose my patience entirely too much.  I have found making time for myself essential.  Hard to do with the kiddos and my job and the law suit, but I have managed.  What are you doing to take care of you :) ?

 

You may not be depressed, but you are going through a terrible time.  Your children are going through a confusing time too, but they will get through it and on the other side they will be strong and happy.

 

When I was too tense to meditate, one thing I did was make sure I was distracted (books on tape, etc.) so that I couldn't spin.  Might that help you?

post #5 of 9

A good friend who has had to assume custody of her young niece told me that children grieve on a different time frame than adults, experiencing a sort of delayed reaction.  So it can seem like they are adjusting well and then sometime later they start to fall apart, usually while the adults have already started to climb out of their own hole.  And it does seem to match the experience with my kids so far. 

post #6 of 9

Oh, also what about exercise? It is always the first to go for me, but when I do get some (even walking 1-2 miles fast) I am way less likely to yell. My 3yo even said today when I was pissed that my 10yo ranted about what was for dinner, "do you want to go walk to be happy?"

post #7 of 9

homeopathics really help me and the girls...rescue remedy does wonders!  and pulsatilla helps whining.  my girls also fight over me and are clingy...and they didn't really like their dad nor do they mention missing him.  they see him once a week for 2-3 hours.  but it may be true that children need the positive attention of more than one adult.  my girls are 5 and 8.  they take turns on my lap when they wake up in the morning.  sometimes they both get on there!  until 3 weeks ago they both slept in my bed, and asked for alternating snuggles.  i just told them, over and over again, i have two arms and two girls...and now they battle over me less (it's been a year since I kicked him out).  also....kids the age of yours need to know what to expect.  so try to get a regular arrangement going with your ex, so you can put it on the calendar and talk to them about when it is.  these fears your daughter is having are developmentally appropriate.  you can get her involved in what will help....sometimes you can draw pictures of superheroes to scare the wolf away, she can wear wonder woman bracelets to scare the wolf or toys away, she can learn a magic chant to ward off the wolf and keep the toys quiet.  ask her which she would prefer, but only engage this idea when she is in a good mood.  if she is in a negative mood she will reject the idea.  when she chooses, you can help her make the bracelets or posters or chant, and then remind her of her power to do this when she mentions the bogeyman.  if these don't work, a child therapist will have other ideas (similar ideas came from a counselor my kids saw).  also....you need to have a talk with your mom.  criticizing you has to stop.

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

You are all so awesome!! Thanks for replying and I love your ideas.  

I do run 3x a week, and love how I feel after! I'm starting to realize that the worst times are in the weekends when we dont have school and daycare, so obviously the constant whining and not listening to mommy is non-stop.  This week I've been applying using some great tools I got from a yelling thread over at the gentle discipline forum, and the week went a lot better.  But oh my, this weekend, MUST COME TO AN END~   May I dance the happy dance???  Both kids are finally sleeping.   I dont want to love their bedtime, but this momma needs a break.  Today big sis chose to not go potty because I didnt take her and her lil sis told her she was taking her either.  She cried, fussed and refused to go on her own. So, my question is, do I enable her fears by taking her, or does she snap out of it.  I really dont know if I should just take her, hoping is a stage, or should I make her go or pee her pants??    

 

provocativa.....  LOVE  your ideas and I am definitely giving her magic powers tomorrow!!!  thumb.gif  We are also starting counseling this week, hoping to get some answers!

 

Thank you, Thank you!!!!

post #9 of 9

Oh, yeah. I forgot to mention our trick: monster sprinkle. I told her about monster sprinkle and how it transforms monsters. I did a silly impersonation of a monster and told her to throw sprinkle on me and when she did I did a full body wiggle and changed to a happy face silly voice saying, "do you want to play with me?" It works a little. She holds out her hand when she goes to sleep to get the invisible monster sprinkles now. 

 

Not a perfect solution but maybe one of many?

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