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Loneliness and the SAHM. - Page 2

post #21 of 41
I am. I don't like the neighborhood where I live that much (have lived here two years now) because it's not all that walkable, and even though there's families everywhere, there doesn't seem to be much community. The neighbors are nice but all have more kids and seem to be busy with that and entrenched in their lives. I've found local park district art and music classes for toddlers, but find it hard to meet people. I'm shy, and I like to be alone, but I could use a few friends. Even now that I've made a couple, it is slow going. Plus, I don't always just want to get together with our kids and talk about our kids, while watching our kids. Talking to my mom helps.

Sometimes I think just more time alone for myself would help, ironically, because I wouldn't feel isolated from myself as well. I also think just talking to my old friends in other states helps tremendously, but since I had my first child, they don't seem very interested. I think they're busier, or aren't interested in my life, or think I'm not interested anymore now that I'm a mom. I don't know.
post #22 of 41
Wanted to add that maybe one of the reasons I feel lonely is that I'm really picky (maybe too picky???) about the kind of people I hand out with.
post #23 of 41
Thread Starter 
Hi Mamas,

I'll work backwards here-thank you to everyone who posted. Again, it's always comforting to know I'm not the only mama with these feelings.

Hi TLO : You know, DH just said something to me the other day when I was not picking up the phone when a friend called (I just didn't feel like talking at that moment and let the phone go to our voicemail). He asked if I was avoiding her and I said, NO, I just don't want to talk right now. And he said something about how it's a bit wacky that I'm doing the avoiding considering I have a history of talking about being lonely without many SAHM friends. To him, I guess, things are very fixable. Like, if you're lonely, fix it. Pick up the phone, make a call, go out, etc. And he's right on many levels. Althogh I've realized some things about myself since having kids that aren't wonderful. Like, I can be very picky, sort of judgmental about people sometimes. In fact, when I was first at home with my son almost 4 years ago, it took me a few months to start joining groups, trying to make friends, etc. I think I had some kind of checklist in my head for a friend that I really didn't even know existed. Until I would meet someone and they bottle fed, or they didn't sleep with their kids, or perhaps they worked part time. And they weren't exactly like me, so I would somehow write them off. I know that sounds horrible, but I'm being honest here. I think there were probably a few relationships in those early months and years that could have become deeper and more fulfilling relationships had I stuck with them a little better. Karma is a b&*$th b/c a few moms sort of did this to me, too. Blew me off a bit. At that time, I used to joke with DH that I was "dating" other women. Trying friendships on for size, all the while still feeling very lonely inside. Whew! Was that a ramble or what??

Oh, and TLO-I am already at my wits end with my DH working a more "regular" schedule. He is home at 7pm, and leaves for work at 8:15 am. A long day, but nothing like a physician's hours. I know a few people IRL who have partners where basically they are IT all the time, and that's rough, rough, rough.

wurzel-It's so rough. I'm happy to hear that you've developed some friendships that you are happy with. I think your post is a great example of getting our of ourselves a bit-getting over our *ideas* of the perfect friend, or relationship. Oh, and MDC has been a HUGE, important part of my life now for 3.5 years. HUGE. Oh-and I'm so happy your little one is fine now. AND DS, who had much more minor issues right at birth, had to sleep RIGHT ON TOP OF ME, too. Pretty much for almost 18 months!

alkenny-Thanks again for giving me the extra push to work to connect more with DH. Your posts are encouraging that.

Oh-and another thing here-co-sleeping right now, when we're really realizing how much we miss our own space, our own place for US only, is really rough. I don't think that things are going to change overnight, and at this point (older DS is now almost 4) I realize that he might just be staying put until he chooses to go to his own bed. And right now, that makes me a bit said. There's no place to escape the high-needs and challenges of my son. Seriously. We have tough days, and then I just don't want to be that physically close to him at night some nights. But I guess this is another thread.

afishwithabike-Yes, adult conversation is what I'm jonesing for most days! It has been soooooo nice having DH here a few extra days over the holidays. And I think part of that, besides the obvious part of having the extra hands, is that I can say, "Oh, did you hear about such and such?" Or, "I was listening to NPR this mornign and blah-blah-blah". Can't really talk about the important stuff with a 4 year old and a 16 mos old.

huggerwocky-I can imagine that some of the nuances of this SAHM social interaction is extra hard for you. But keep in mind that from this thread alone (and many others here at MDC) it seems like it's rough for so many of us for sooo many reasons. Are there activities that your DC is involved with that the parents attend? Any other kind of support groups in your area? Something you're interested in during your "free" time?

briansmama-You're reminding me that DH and I used to do these sorts of things all the time. We need to get back to it, really, really do.

GTg.More when I can. Thanks, mamas.
post #24 of 41
I'm a new SAHM (dd is 2mo)
The "newness" hasn't worn off yet, but I can see myself in your shoes!
MDC helps!
post #25 of 41
Thread Starter 
and thanks for your reply. MDC does help- A LOT!
post #26 of 41
I haven't had time to read through absolutely everyone's posts, but I definitely relate. Especially since August. Before that, I worked part-time from the time dd was 2 months old. Then I started my own business and when I quit my part-time job that childcare funds dried up. It has been really hard for me (both to find time to do my work and to not get lonely). Although, I also get bored a lot of the time. I adore my daughter, she charms me in so many ways each day, but it is also a huge challenge many days dealing with a creature who, for the most part, cannot yet be reasoned with. And I don't like playing toddler games all day. I like reading to her and we interact, of course, but I really crave adult conversation and the feeling that you get when you are experience "flow" in your work.

At the job I had right before dd was born, we had daily morning coffee breaks where we'd just sit around and talk about trashy tv, pop culture, play "guess who died" and stupid stuff like that. And I worked at a place where I felt like my coworkers were "like me"--had similar senses of humor, etc. I had NO idea how much I would miss this, but it is the single biggest thing from my former daily life that I miss.
post #27 of 41
Originally Posted by Bearsmama
Hi Mamas,

I'll work backwards here-thank you to everyone who posted. Again, it's always comforting to know I'm not the only mama with these feelings.

wurzel-It's so rough. I'm happy to hear that you've developed some friendships that you are happy with. I think your post is a great example of getting our of ourselves a bit-getting over our *ideas* of the perfect frie nd, or relationship. Oh, and MDC has been a HUGE, important part of my life now for 3.5 years. HUGE. Oh-and I'm so happy your little one is fine now. AND DS, who had much more minor issues right at birth, had to sleep RIGHT ON TOP OF ME, too. Pretty much for almost 18 months!

GTg.More when I can. Thanks, mamas.

Hi bearsmama,

I just came back and re-read this post as I didn't remember exactly what I had written. On thursday I had to realize that I am back to where I had been one year ago :

It's my dds' birthday this week (on Jan.,12) and we had planned on a family get-together on this day and I wanted to rent our family center for saturday to celebrate w/the other moms and their children. I wanted this to be low-key and nothing fancy, just plain nice. Well, daid thursday we met for the first time after the winter holidays and I had to overhear several conversations about b-day celebrations, get-togethers, trips and such all the other made during that time - together! I was sitting there and just tought - 'Well, it seems as if I am *not* that much a part of this group as I felt to be.' Of course it was not always all of them at once but nevertheless I haven`t been asked. And this wasn't the first time! As I wrote in my other post we live right next to the playground. Most of the time some of us often met by incident there but there had been times when I came there just to see a huge bunch of them sitting and chatting there - and no one asked me beforehand if I'd like to come as well : Since I was the newbie I never paid much attention to it. But speaking to my husband on thursday we had to realize that they somewhat like be but that I am not a part of their group.
DD is starting in a waldorf kindergarten tomorrow and will be going there every thursday and friday until we build up to 5 days a week this coming summer/autumn. I hope to find some new friends there who can accept that even a young mom can be taken seriously and that being a bit crunchy isn't bad. Some moms whom I already know have children who also go there and I hope to deepen my relationship to them since I like them both a lot.
I cried for the first time since last year on thursday because the whole thing wore me out a lot!

My husband and my BIL both felt deeply sorry for me and we agreed that my age is really an issue; I am 23, most of the other moms are in their mid-30s or even beginning 40s. And - if I like someone I give all my heart. This was not the first time that I had been saddned by a so-called 'friend' and my husband has witnessed this several times.

But I am happy to say that my dear other friend S will always stand by me! Even when she started working last year and we weren't able to see each other for 3 months our friendship stood strong. We talked over the phone once or twice a month and still felt close to each other. I really : her a lot and I *know* that she does as well because she told me during the christmas holidays

As you said - the perfect friend might initially not exist. But it's worth finding someone who you can talk to no matter what since he or she might turn out to be the *almost* percet one!

Just like you have have to start once again. I'd love to have more contact w/you since a have a feeling that we could be a lot likeminded - maybe wepm each other!?

Hope to hear from you soon,

PS: Of course I will not celebrate dds' b-day w/all the other moms on saturday. It saddens me as I love celebrations but it's simply not worth it. We will meet w/my dear friend S, her dh and their son since both kids are just a day apart and make an after-celebration for the two of them.
post #28 of 41
post #29 of 41
lonliness has been a huge issue for me too. I stay home and homeschool. My kids are to old for playgroups also. We homeschool and there are a ton of local groups but we aren't religious and most of the groups require that you be christians. I did find one homeschool group that I love but I love it mostly for my kids-and even though I really like the moms in the group I don't think that we are going to be close friends or anything most of them are really active and busy and we only see each other at meetings. Actually given time I may become really close friends with them-until then though...
I guess I would just like to find a few women who live close to me who don't get that funny look on their face when I mention homebirth-I am preggo right now so it comes up-or homeschooling or herb gardening. Dh works a lot and even the time we spend together is not what I need-he is actually supportive and understanding about this issue but I need a woman friend or two. I am glad to have found this place-it leads me to really believe there are others out there like me.
feeling whiney and blue because it is winter and raining...can't wait for spring!


ps how do you make those neat little signatures?
post #30 of 41
Lonliness is an issue for me too!!! We moved 400 miles away from our family and friends over the summer. I am a SAHM with our 4 y/o DS. We joined the YMCA preschool and the neighborhood playgroup and story time at the library, etc. I still feel lonely. Most days I feel like I am back in high school trying to break into a clique halfway through the school year!
It really doesn't help I am a mix of crunchy and mainstream. So I am usually too crunchy for the mainstream mamas and too mainstream for the crunchy mamas.

I know how you feel Wurzelkind! I keep waiting for someone from our playgroup to call and invite DS to play, but nobody ever does. There are only a couple kids from playgroup that we get together with occasionally, but I have to do the inviting.

Sorry for the ramble I have the post-holiday blues. I am really glad that they are over, but this is the first full week of my DH back to work and gettingback into the regular routine has been difficult. Also we have not seen the sun in about a month and it is killing me!!! Please let us have an early spring!
post #31 of 41
Lonely here too. 3 kids, family close by, the kids often go to my folks' house on Saturday for the day while dh is at work so I have free time which I spend....reading or resting. I have some help around here, but not like I used to since now my mom babysits my sister's son 3 days a week and I babysit him 2 mornings a week while my sister works, and my inlaws are....well, my mil is "sickly" (long story) and my fil works a lot so they aren't available at all. I volunteer at my oldest dd's school. My dh leaves for work at 8 am and gets home at nearly 7 pm on his regular schedule (Bearsmama, are you sure you aren't me? I feel like I have so much in common with you ), but at least is home Sundays and Mondays. I am picky about whom I spend time with (I really have to 'click' with people, and even then it's hard to take it beyond acquaintanceship, yk?), and I am very shy/introverted. Plus I have always tended to be a little odd or unusual in my thinking (as I perceive it when talking to others-I just see the world a little differently), and definitely my parenting is unusual in this community. I started going to once-monthly attachment parenting international meetings (almost every mom there has just a baby or two, not kids as old as my older two), but the last couple of months either my kids or I have been sick on meeting day. I have a really close friend who lives an hour and a half away, and she just had her 4th baby and works part time so her schedule is crazy and between all our kids we don't often get to talk (and like me, she collapses in exhaustion in the evenings and doesn't think of using the phone).

I guess it's not that I don't have people, but that I don't have much adult interaction most days. And it's hard. Even if you meet up with moms, half the time is spent on the kids rather than actually talking. And that's when you can actually get together between all the kids' schedules and moms' schedules.

Ah, well. At least it's good to know I'm not the only mom who is lonely. Maybe I'm not as freakish as I often feel I must be.
post #32 of 41
I haven't read through all the posts in this thread...but just wanted to offer my commiserating reply...

YES! I'm lonely. Quite lonely. I live in a relatively small town that isn't conduscive to my belief system. Not to mention...my partner's vehicle has been sitting in the garage, broken down...for about a year now. He takes my car to work. So I'm left here stranded in the house with the kiddo. We can get out and walk the neighborhood...but the way this city is layed out...we can't walk to shops or anything. Suburban Hell at it's finest (or...worst, depending on the day)...
There are some groups out here that cater to mom's...but not necessarily their kids. And...I don't fit in with them. It's not a matter of TRYING...it's a matter of...we don't get along. Oil and water. And I would have to be someone I am not to make it work.

Anyway...just thought I'd throw my log on the fire...I wish you all peace.
post #33 of 41
I have a couple of friends who go to the movies once every week---no matter what, they do that for themselves. They also meet for coffee once or twice a week in the a.m. after dropping off the kids at school and I try and meet them for that. It can be lonely staying at home and getting engulfed in that part of life.

Meetings with friends or kindred spirits don't happen so organically anymore. I resisted that so much in the beginning until I realized I just had to organize some girlfriend time into my life or get very very depressed and irritable.

You are worth it, chica!
post #34 of 41
Sarah, we are almost the same age. I find that it's hard to meet older moms.
I have been really lonely the last couple of years--as we are new to the area where we are now living. But after a while, you get used to it--I know, it does sound odd. But I really find myself so busy with every day life that I am not feeling that as much any more.
I used to force myself to talk to anyone with a kid in tow--at the store, at the library, at the rec center, etc., and eventually I made some friends. It almost reminds me of dating--and trying to meet someone. You have to really be on your best behavior and all that, just to meet others.
I have one really good friend now, but even that has its drawbacks because she has a lot of drama in her life. Even though we are close in age, education level, and our kids are close in age (both in our 40s, both PhDs, both with toddlers)...but even with all that in common, it's not that easy lately.
Some other things that have really helped me--taking a class when I can, reading when I can-- and exercising--that's been really helpful. I run with my kids in the stroller.
Look into things that you have always wanted to do, but couldn't do due to money, time, etc. and just read up on and even make a plan as to how you would like to do it in the future. Your kids won't be little forever and eventually you do get parts of your life back. When they are toddlers or babies, being a sahm is all-consuming.
I have always been really interested in falconry (spelling?) and plan to look into hopefully taking "a class" or lessons, or whatever it takes to work with birds of prey. Maybe I can even look into birds of prey rescue.
I think as my kids get a little older, I also get more "into" their lives and that makes it less lonely.
I know this is hard to do--but if you can really focus on the moment and be really present in what is going on, the loneliness really does subside, even if only temporarily.
post #35 of 41
Originally Posted by sarahariz
I've been eating chocolate like crazy to stuff my feelings of loneliness, boredom, anger, frustration, resentment, whatever!
omg, me tooo!! : but, I was reading in the ppd forum, that one naturopath's "diagnosis" was to go and eat as much organic dark chocolate as you want first, then go see him for the next step. I think it was to raise the body's serotonin levels. hmmm, sounds good to me!

I didn't get a chance to read all the replies, but I am : because there are a lot of good perspectives and suggestions in this thread! There has been something BUGGING me for so long now! (since I got pregnant) I have realized that it has been the lack of that something that *I* used to always do. Whether it was school, a job, any worthwhile and fullfilling committment. I mean, ds is definitely a worthwhile and fullfilling commitment and more, but I need that INDIVIDUAL achievement in my area of interest, yk? After reading this thread, I am convinced that my upcoming plans are a very good idea. DP and I are leaving CA, going back "home" and starting our farm there (that part won't be for about 2 years or so though...). I am excited because I am going with ds first, dp will continue to work here for about a month or two. My family is all there, visiting relatives will be there when I get there, and my parents are letting my stay at their house, my mom letting me do her books for her health food store to make money...without having to put ds in someone else's care! What a relief. Then I will begin taking free training classes to do tax preparations this spring. I'm so excited about the new "endedavors" and getting to DO something for myself.

But I absolutely feel the lonliness otherwise!!

post #36 of 41
Thread Starter 
Hi Mamas,
Reading, reading reading, trying to catch up. I'll be back to post soon. Thansk for continuuing this thread and sharing your feelings.
post #37 of 41
I feel a combination of things...loneliness, boredom, and frustration at being constantly in demand. I am lonely in that I wish I had someone nearby who was in relatively the same situation as me - same age, first child (or maybe second), same educational level, similar interests, etc. But I haven't had a close friend in many years, so that's nothing new. It just seems to be more important now. I have met several mothers at LLL and playgroup, but like someone else mentioned (gah, I don't even know if it was this thread or not), they aren't the type of people I'd befriend if I didn't have a child. I wish I could find that person nearby. On the flip side, I used to spend most of my time alone. I used to spend a lot of time online and read a lot of books. I think at some level, I'm overstimulated - though how I can be overstimulated and bored at the same time, I don't know. I adore my son, but I'm frustrated at how little time I get to myself. I know it will change soon enough, so I try not to get too overwhelmed by it all...but it's hard.
post #38 of 41
Originally Posted by GranoLLLy-girl
Sarah, we are almost the same age. I find that it's hard to meet older moms.
Yes, it is. I have a PhD too (clinical psychology) and I haven't met any other moms in that category. I will be 44 on Feb 4 and my dd will be 18 mo old. I've met about 5 moms who are 40ish who also have young kids, but only one has become a friend. I was thinking of organizing a pot-luck for the 40 and over crowd w/ wee ones!

I too go to playgroups, and just earlier this week found something called the Mom's Club http://www.momsclub.org/index.html-I joined out of desperation. A lot of people here go to something called MOPS http://www.mops.org/page.php?pageid=...inklist&src=70, but it isn't my style.

I just wish there was more support in our culture for mothers, children and mothering!

Over the holidays my chocolate habit got way out of control! Now Valentine's Day is coming!

I went to some 12 step meetings recently (alanon, adult children of alcoholics, etc)- they aren't kid friendly, but at least there are adults there talking about real life problems and real solutions. I found I enjoyed them.

I wish all of us who have written in on this forum could get together in person!
post #39 of 41
I think it's just as hard as a 30-something. At least in this town, most women start having children earlier. Women in their 30s have multiple children. I have a master's degree, and one time, I was hanging out with two other women (from LLL) who, as it turned out, also had master's degrees. But one has three kids (oldest age 7, youngest about the same age as my son), and the other just had her third child. Her second DS likes to beat up on my DS, so they're not exactly a good match. <roll eyes> I think that the women saw me as both naive and an outsider, since they'd been going to meetings together for years.
post #40 of 41
Hi mommas. I lurk on this board, but this is my first post.

Do you ever feel like you're living the movie "Groundhog Day?" I do. It's like the same day, over and over and over. I'm so lonely! We moved to our extremely small town over a year ago and I still have not made a single friend. Family is 2 hours away, and there are *no* playgroups/moms' groups in the area - I know, 'cause I've checked.

My older two are in school, and last year I tried to volunteer a lot in hopes of making friends, but that didn't work. Now I'm at home constantly with my 3-month old, who I , but being at home with a babe makes me feel even more isolated.

My dh and I have a good relationship, but I always feel like I have nothing to say. He always wants to know how my day was, but conversation about how I cleaned, did laundry, and played with the baby is not very interesting, kwim? My sister always asks if I've made any friends yet, and I always have to answer, "no."

I feel almost shell-shocked. Before I became a SAHM I was a full-time student and worked part-time. We lived in an area where I had friends and a life. Now I feel like I have nothing of my "own." I can't remember the last time I was happy.
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