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After 20 months, I am DONE with SAHMing - help me not hate it - Page 2

post #21 of 30
I just want to add that I am a Work Away from Home Mom and I seriously think that the time away from my son makes the "heart grow fonder".
I am the only breadwinner so I have chosen to remain working rather than explore other options that would be more financially precarious. Perhaps I have prevented feeling "too" resentful at being away from him by seeing the positive side of our daily seperation.
Maybe you could even just get a part-time job? A few hours of week of volunteer service? A class just for you?
Time to yourself (which it sounds like you want) can translate into a lot of different solutions.

Love to you...

post #22 of 30
I just wanted to reiterate what many others have said: that you are in a transition time. You've just had a new baby, are new to mothering two, and that there is a lot going on for you right now physically, mentally, and emotionally. Everything's new for the older one too. I think it's pretty normal to feel out of control right now.

That said, there are different levels of postpartum culture shock. So be honest & keep checking in with yourself. I just met a mom who was sharing that she had PPD after her second child and really was unable to identify it until recently. She didn't feel sad, just angry, and like she was "having a nervous breakdown," and like two kids was too many for her to handle. PPD isn't just about sadness.
That one's children frustrate and anger one is very normal. But "miserable and angry all day long" might be a sign that something else is going on.
post #23 of 30

You sound like you need a break.

I've been a SAHM for 5 1/2 years now. It has had ups and downs. My dd was really, really hard to be around when she was 2 & 3 years old. She also did not want to leave my side and wasn't terribly rational because they aren't at that age. I remember someone telling me that was a fun age when they found out how old dd was and I just wanted to strangle them for saying that because it was a nightmare to me. Dd needed a lot of patience from me as we worked through it. It got better over time. I think it helped me to find out what was normal for her age and change my expectations. I also tried to put myself in her shoes. She was adjusting to a lot of things right then and didn't have the tools yet to express herself any other way. She was also responding to my stress and anger.
I enjoy being with dd much more now. I think it is normal to prefer some ages over others.
Some helpful advice about tantrums and handling anger-

You and your family are still adjusting to a baby and that probably contributes to all this.

Would your dh's schedule permit you to work when he is off so your kids are not in daycare or with a sitter every day? I know families who have arranged their work schedules that way so they do not use outside child care most days but both parents work. It can be done.

Maybe start by finding some time for you each day.
Maybe looking for positive things would help too- sometimes it is easier to focus on the negative and overlook the good.
You could write down 1 good moment with your kids each day in a journal. Maybe plan 1 fun activity to try to do each day together.

Some ideas from http://www.onceuponalife.com/forums/...ead.php?t=5444
Blow Bubbles
Play Hide-and-Seek
Play Chase
Do Fingerplays
Sing a song
Collect rocks in a basket
Make an obstacle course out of cushions and/or furniture
Make a fort out of cushions and sheets
Go for a Walk
Make a Car out of a box
Read a book
Go to the park
Play with Clay-Dough
Toss Bean bags into a Bucket
Play the shell and pea game
Dance to music
Download games for toddlers from the Internet
Practice putting things in and taking things out of boxes and bags
Make a temporary slide out of a table leaf and your couch
Roll a ball back and forth on the floor
Scoop dirt or sand into a child's bucket (or use a serving spoon and bowl)
Practice climbing by stacking boxes on top of each other (only with adult supervision)
Put on a puppet show
Go fishing with a yard stick and yarn
Make a Horseshoe game
Make a Shape Puzzle
Play paper basketball
Run through a Sprinkler
Play with a bucket of water and a sponge (PLEASE WATCH CHILD AT ALL TIMES!)
Make a Drum out of an oatmeal box
Play with a kazoo
Wash windows together
Bang on Pots and Pans with a spoon
Brush each other's teeth
Play dress-up with stuffed animals and your child's clothes
Stack canned or boxed food on top of each other
Let child stack mixing bowls inside each other
Make a playhouse out of a large box
Let child play with a sticker sheet (make sure your child doesn't eat them!)
Put stickers on fingers for finger puppets
Play a musical instrument together- i.e.recorder, piano, etc.
Go on a Smelling Hunt
Frost Cookies
Plant a flower or vegetable plant together
Roll a tennis ball into an empty trash can or bucket
Draw on a mirror with dry-erase markers
Play hide and seek together- trying to find a stuffed animal or other object
Have a splash party together in the bathtub
Put a leash on a stuffed animal and walk around the house
Record each other on a tape recorder (great for scrapbooks or journals!)
Make and try on paper hats
Give a piggie back ride
Play "Horsie"
Talk into an electric fan (it distorts your voice)
Play tug-of-war with a blanket
Collect flowers (felt, artificial, real...)
Make a camera and go on a Safari
Play games with frozen juice lids
Disconnect your phone and pretend to make phone calls to relatives
Leave your phone connected and really make phone calls to relatives- let your child talk too
String large beads onto or along a shoelace
Squirt each other with squirt bottles
Glue shapes onto paper
Make sock puppets
Make paper puppets
Fill an old purse with toys
Use a paper towel tube as a megaphone
Make binoculars and go "Bird Watching" or "Stuffed Animal Watching"
Put snacks in different fun containers (paper sacks, empty canisters, etc.)
Act out a story from a book
Walk on a balance beam- use a 2x4 placed on the ground
Draw with chalk on the sidewalk
Sketch an outline of your child on the sidewalk or paper with chalk
Paint child's palms with tempura paint and blot on paper. Makes a great card for loved ones!
Put lipstick on child and kiss a mirror
Make a puddle on cement and splash barefoot in it
Let child decorate and eat an open peanut butter sandwich
Make a toilet paper barricade for child to go under, over, or through
Do the Hokey Pokey
Make a super-hero costume out of household items
Do Knee-Bouncing Rhymes
Play "Red Light, Green Light" saying "Go" and "Stop"
Make a shoebox train for stuffed animals
Make a pillow pile to jump on (keep it clear from any hard surfaces, including walls!)
Make an easy puzzle with felt and velcro
Make bracelets or collars for stuffed animals out of pipe cleaners and jingle bells
Learn numbers from a deck of cards
Play the matching game with a deck of cards
Make a domino chain
Have a picnic in the park, backyard, or living room!
Play dress up in Mommy or Daddy's clothes
Make a tin cup telephone and talk to each other in it
Make a nature collage
Mirror each other
Make a "Mummy Mommy" with toilet paper
Make a tape recording of short music selections and instructions to move in different ways
Make and walk along a toilet paper trail
post #24 of 30
I HIGHLY recommend reading Dr. Sears' advice on toddlers. It can help you both stay sane during what is a huge time of upheaval for both of you. You may aso want to consider some PPD as a factor as well, that can seriously afect your patience. You may also have set yourself up for failure, so to speak, by thinking that you could not relate to a toddler. If you take the approach of learning how to interact with a toddler, and manage his behavior, just like you'd learn stuff at law school, then it may help you.

Your ds is trying to adjust to a new sibling, which is more traumatic for some kids than others. He is not verbal enough to talk about how he feels, yet he is old enough to show how he feels. If his verbal ability is not great you may also want to start signing with him to help with his frustration level.

With my ds I found this age to be the hardest - he was very impatient, frustrated, needy, and threw many many tantrums. I looked at each behavior as a challenge to ME to learn to help him manage himself and his emotions and behavior. Since he is constantly growing and changing, new challenges keep coming up but in the process I feel like I know him so well that adapting to new behavior is much easier now.

(((hugs))) You can do this - look at it as a learning experience, like in a classroom, and it may help a bit.
post #25 of 30
I encourage you to remember back to when your toddler was a baby and how your hormones may have helped you fall in love with your new baby.
I see many newly pregnant mamas wonder about how their new baby will take away from their older child, but by the time the newborn arrives, their thoughts have changed. Now they worry about keeping the baby safe from the toddler.
I think it's very normal to go through a time when you fall out of adoration with your toddler and fall into infatuation with your baby.
Combined with some cabin-fever and bored feelings and some OMG - Law School around the corner feelings, it sounds rough.
Hugs to you and the little ones,
post #26 of 30
It's definitely hard with one small child, and add an infant to the mix, and it triples. A toddler has to adjust to a new rival for your affections when you add a baby to the mix. They need "alone" time with you so they know they are still special to you.

Maybe it would help you to do what I do...try to remember a toddler isn't capable of rationalizing, so what seems "irrational" to you is just a toddler acting normally for their age. They act, and react. They don't sit an think about what they're doing and the consequenses.

I find it helps to give them choices. Would you rather wear the green shirt or the blue one? Would you rather watch the Elmo or the Cookie Monster movie? Would you rather have water or juice to drink? Do you want green beans or peas?

That gives them some control of the situation instead of just being at the mercy of whatever you decide they should do or eat or wear, and usually makes for a much more pleasant interaction.
post #27 of 30
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Apricot
I think it's very normal to go through a time when you fall out of adoration with your toddler and fall into infatuation with your baby.
I think this did happen, but I now seem to be over it. I have had a good run of days with ds1 and actually missed him last night when we went to a fancy dinner. He is getting closer to talking so that helps.

Originally Posted by DanAbimytwomiracle
If you take the approach of learning how to interact with a toddler, and manage his behavior, just like you'd learn stuff at law school, then it may help you.
Yes, this helps. I have to look at each day proactively instead of annoyedly reacting to his needs.

So is there a Dr. Sears book called toddlers, or is it just in the Baby Book?

Thanks for everyone's help.
post #28 of 30
His website, www.askdrsears.com, has some great tips on toddlers. They were my guide for my son when he hit around 15 months on up.
post #29 of 30
Lilli, bless you and any other mama who has two who are that close in age, or twins! I don't know how you do it. Mine are 28 months apart, now dd is almost 4 and ds is 18 months. I have days where I feel like driving myself off the nearest cliff. It's just craziness around here. I was feeling so overwhelmed that I started seeing a therapist. She has taught me some relaxation techniques and has really helped me in dealing with my frustration. I'm much happier, and nicer to the kids now too. I remember when ds was a baby, and I thought, "it will never get any harder than this." Who was I kidding? It seems like it's only gotten harder since then. Some days I think that I can't wait until they're both in school. Most days, though, I think about how dd's first day of school will be the hardest day of my life! It's a crazy run of emotions that our children put us through!
post #30 of 30
SAHMing is the hardest freaking thing ever. I'm so glad you shared your frustration, seems like you got lots of ideas and it helps me, also, to know that what I am feeling is normal.
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