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help me deal with stress

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I am having an increasingly difficult time dealing with the stress in my life.  I find myself getting into these states of mind where I feel frantic.  When I get this way I lash out at my dh and dds because I feel angry and out of control.  I guess I have always had these issues to a certain extent.  They come and go as life changes from non-stressful times to stressful times.  Right now we are getting ready to move, I have a new baby, we are trying to sell the house, etc.   Most of the responsibilities other than work are mine.  My husband helps out with some things when I ask, but he doesn't take initiative to help.  So this morning, for instance, we had a house showing at 9am, and I had to get the kids out of the house to school, nurse baby, clean up after everyone, pack lunches, etc.  I started feeling really out of control and frantic.  Then I got angry at my kids for making little messes.  Then I feel guilty afterwards for yelling at my kids and acting like a crazy woman, then I feel even worse.  I am so stressed about the move, and my kids well being during such a difficult time.  Yet I feel like all I can do is be mean to them and yell at them.  What is wrong with me?  How can I better deal with my stress.  How can I get out of that state of frenzy when I feel myself getting into it?  Any thoughts?  Thanks.

post #2 of 7
Thread Starter 

As I read others posts, I am wondering more and more if I my have a more severe underlying mental health issue.  It is perhaps triggered by the stress.  But I just don't feel "normal" a lot of the time.  I have been feeling like I am a really bad person, like I can't control my emotions, and really hateful lately about myself and others.  This doesn't sound like a normal response to stress.  I guess I'm not sure what to do.  There are no therapists in town(its a small town), but I have to somehow get through these next few months.  It all just feels like way too much.
 

post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by catinthehat View Post

I am having an increasingly difficult time dealing with the stress in my life.  I find myself getting into these states of mind where I feel frantic. 

 

It sounds to me that you are burned out. You are completely depleted and are losing your ability to cope. 

 

When I get this way I lash out at my dh and dds because I feel angry and out of control.  I guess I have always had these issues to a certain extent.  They come and go as life changes from non-stressful times to stressful times.  

 

I am guilty of doing the same. I lash out of stress. I think a lot of people do that or completely withdraw (my observation).

 

Right now we are getting ready to move, I have a new baby, we are trying to sell the house, etc.   Most of the responsibilities other than work are mine.  My husband helps out with some things when I ask, but he doesn't take initiative to help. 

 

Why is this just your responsibility, especially in your current state? Have you told your DH that you are in no shape to take on this stressful time on your own? His house, his kids, his life too, no? 

 

So this morning, for instance, we had a house showing at 9am, and I had to get the kids out of the house to school, nurse baby, clean up after everyone, pack lunches, etc.  I started feeling really out of control and frantic.  Then I got angry at my kids for making little messes. 

 

While this is not the best way to behave towards our children, we all do that at some point. You are NOT alone! 

 

Then I feel guilty afterwards for yelling at my kids and acting like a crazy woman, then I feel even worse.  I am so stressed about the move, and my kids well being during such a difficult time.  Yet I feel like all I can do is be mean to them and yell at them.

 

I am sorry you are having such a tough time. hug2.gif

 

What is wrong with me?  

As I read others posts, I am wondering more and more if I my have a more severe underlying mental health issue.  It is perhaps triggered by the stress.  But I just don't feel "normal" a lot of the time.  I have been feeling like I am a really bad person, like I can't control my emotions, and really hateful lately about myself and others.  

 

Obviously I don't know you and know your situation personally but I must ask, could this be a case of terrible self-judgment? Are you really THAT bad? Can you be more forgiving towards yourself and maybe that can lead you to be more forgiving towards your DH and kiddos? 

 

This doesn't sound like a normal response to stress.  I guess I'm not sure what to do.  There are no therapists in town(its a small town), but I have to somehow get through these next few months.  It all just feels like way too much.

 

People respond to stress differently. Maybe it is something beyond or maybe you are just under tremendous stress. I wish there was help available to help you sort out which side you fall on.

 

 

In the mean time, if you can:

 

1. Be kind to yourself

 

2. Strip everything down to what you actually NEED to do. Not more.

 

3. Get rid of extra stuff in your home (from toys to clothing-- we just don't need as much as we have). Get rid of them and you will feel lighter.

 

4. Get your DH on board. Make him his own to do list, if you have to. 

 

5. Again, be kind to yourself! Gentle discipline isn't just for our kids you know? 

 

6. Eat well.

 

7. Walk - not for exercise - but for relaxation (a leisurely stroll). Even if it is in the evening after everyone is set for bed. It will give you time to gather your thoughts and take a deep breath for the next day.

 

If you manage to hit 3 or 4 things on the above list daily, things may begin to look a little better. 

post #4 of 7

My thoughts are:  If you're going to move, trying to sell your house, and have 2 young kids and regular house stuff to do that is A LOT on your plate all at the same time.  You're going to act differently when you're faced with several major life stressors like that - and whereas therapy could probably help regardless, it isn't necessarily a sign that you have a mental health issue.

 

I was recently in the position of selling a house, and having a preschooler and new baby and acting very similarly bag.gif.  I felt overwhelmingly responsible for having a perfectly tidy house since that would make the house more likely to sell (which all ended up being primarily my responsibility, not dh's) and had to do it with kids around who, as kids do, tend to get in the way of that goal.  

 

 

How to get out of the frenzy?  I tried to do as much planning-ahead type of work as I could and got rid of as much stuff as I could.  I got the healthiest convenient foods I could for meals (that I also liked a lot).  Got rid of what I could on my list of 'stuff I have to do' (so no weekly classes for kids I had to do, for example).  I played happy, upbeat music loud as I had to dash through and take care of the housework stuff.  I tried to do more stuff out of the house (for the sake of keeping it clean, but also to get out more - hit the park, head out for lunch days).  I also pulled out some books I had that embodied the good person that I want to be, and would re-read parts of those to center myself and remind myself about other qualities that were getting lost in the mess at the time.    

 

 

Sitting down with your dh and brainstorming some more he could take over for you (or some kind of regular non-kid time, to clean and/or relax as needed) would probably help your mental state too.  I think theres another thread about dealing with extreme stress in the mental health part of the forum that has some good suggestions too - so maybe check it out.        

post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

thank you guys!  your suggestions are really helpful, and do put things in perspective- anyone would be totally stressed and having a hard time coping under these circumstances.  i had a better morning today and night last night. 

i think the burden of owning a house and worrying it won't sell is the main thing at this point.  it feels like a ball and chain.  the "what ifs" are just too easy to think about and really scary.  however, my dh and i have decided we will take time every evening after kids are in bed to hash out our worries together.  that will be the designated "stress" time.   dh does usually help if i ask him to do something, but he usually does it "later", and if i feel like i need it done right then, i end up doing it.  so i end up doing most everything. 

i like your idea of reading books about people you admire.  do you mind my asking what books you read? 

i guess i still do feel like perhaps i could use some therapy, but i don't think that is happening in the next few months, so i will take these suggestions to heart and try my hardest just to be nicer to myself. 

post #6 of 7

catinthehat - Right now, that 'will my house sell' is just such a LOADED worry - and that's not just you, there's just the state of things and the housing market and so much more out of your control.  It's really hard - and I really hope that things go okay with it for you.  

 

For us - we had to, or tried really hard, to stay able to think flexibly about it all (what were our plans going to be, what would we do, what if this or that. . .) and that helped a lot.  As opposed to thinking first this, then we do that, then this . . . and getting hurt and frustrated when it didn't go this way or that way (not like we didn't get hurt or frustrated, but it didn't hit us quite so hard and we were able to let go of it a lot easier).  I also really like your plan of scheduling worry/stress time.  Might have to try that out myself when we need it.thumb.gif

 

 

Books:

There are a few parenting books are especially helpful for staying on track and dealing with kid frustrations (unconditional parenting and when kids push your buttons are 2 I've been leafing through most recently).  Just something that deals well with what I'm getting frustrated about with the kids and/or is a reminder of why/how I want to parent.

Also Buddhism for Mothers.

 

The Dalai Lama's How to practice: the way to a meaningful life is another favorite.  I also really like Mary Oliver's poetry (peaceful/nature-based) for escaping the feeling of a 'daily grind'.  Sometimes Alice Walker (We are the ones we have been waiting for would be a good choice of hers).  The This I believe essay series books are another.  


Edited by mumkimum - 5/10/12 at 7:33am
post #7 of 7

i will take these suggestions to heart and try my hardest just to be nicer to myself. 

hug2.gif

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