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Help me get thru this week alone with kids

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
dh is leaving tomorrow for four full days. with dd being SO colicky these days from late afternoon until 11pm... sometimes it's hours of crying unconsolably... and ds trying my patience with his need to be in control of everything and throwing tantrums and being basically disagreeable to EVERYTHING and showing me the same things over and over and over 35 times a day and NEVER wanting to leave the house without a kicking screaming fight.... I am really nervous about being left alone. I'm ready to run away by 6:45 when dh gets home every night and now I won't get a break for four straight days. I'm going to lose my mind! We have lots of books and puzzles and crafty things, but all ds wants to do is play with his thomas the train while i watch (i'm not allowed to play *with* him), or watch tv, which i'm just not going to let him do for more than an hour or so. He won't play independently but won't let me do anything either.

I'm not sure what i'm asking for here. Ideas for coping maybe? How to not lose my mind? How to listen to a crying baby for 5 hours? I just don't know if there are answers to those questions. Any suggestions?
post #2 of 10
Hmm, trying to think of the things I do to keep from going crazy on "stuck in the house" days...do you have any new toys or videos stashed in the closet? You could bust 'em out when things get rough! Or how about asking a girlfriend to come over and bring dinner, or ask a trusted mama friend to take your older one for a little playdate somewhere? Let's see....find the classical music station on the radio? Dance/sway with the kids with the music on and the lights off?

Hang in there mama! If I lived in your town, I'd come over! I know that trapped feeling.
post #3 of 10
All good ideas...sling that baby and go for a walk if possible, sleep as much as possible, and just hang in there!
post #4 of 10
For me this is the time in life that too much TV was made for. Better that and you feeling calmer and more able to deal than you at the end of your rope.

I would make it clear this is a "vacation" and that reg TV rules will go back into effect the next week.
post #5 of 10
Get all the help you can. Beg if you need to!

I'm less stressed about my kids if I have another grown-up around for company, even if they're not especially helpful- would it be better for you to have visitors in the evening?

(I actually got my mother to fly from NY to Seattle when my son was 4 months old and my husband left for 4 days. So clearly my own coping mechanisms suck. )
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
I know. I really feel like there's something wrong with me if I can't cope with my own kids for four days by myself. I mean, I think about all the single SAH parents and mothers and fathers whose spouses are in Iraq who have no help. I shouldn't complain, but I just know my limits and my patience is tried every single day these days. Life is just not a cakewalk right now and I am definitely NOT the most patient person.

Dd is in the sling almost all day. That's great, but it's also making me tired! I'm going to be using that baby swing the next four days a few times. I hope the weather is nice and we can go for a walk or something, blow bubbles, etc.

I went to the library and got a few videos for ds to watch when I need some decompression time. That's a good way to think about this: as a vacation!
post #7 of 10
Order food! Don't cook! Relax about a video or two. Get outside if you can, or make sure you get out of the house at least daily. Sometimes if i get super bored and just can't take another minute, we go for a car ride. Maybe stop somewhere for ice cream. go easy on yourself, you'll get through it and be stronger than you thought possible.
post #8 of 10
I would only suggest getting out of the house as much as possible, and then, when you're inside, letting things GO. Like, maybe you could get the kids into bed with you with a bunch of books and puzzles and lounge, baby LOUNGE. I'm actually serious here. I've found that when I worry too much about my DH being away (or just working extra late, which he will be tomorrow and I'm already worried about THAT, let alone 4 days!), it just gets worse. Like, just give in to the mess and absurdity of it all. Just today, I was feeling like crap, and there was still a full 6 hours of time before Dh came home. I got into bed with a load of books and read, then dozed off with them. Best wishes to you. Before you know it, your DH will be home.
post #9 of 10
Yes - I agree - think of this as a vacation! My husband travels a lot and when he's gone my kids hear "we're going to do things the easy way" all the time

The easy way means - no dishes, simple meals or pizza, etc. Sticking to a schedule that gets them into BED Did I mention no dishes? I just don't stretch our schedule in any way - I don't stay late at the park because then dinner is late and then bedtime is late and nobody to help with the bath, etc etc.

And the vacation part is for *me* too - I'll look at a movie on the computer after the kids are in bed or check out a good novel and I always have a chocolate stash to look forward too when my husband is gone for long stretches

I focus on the essentials and let everything else drop away.

Good luck! I have to say one last thing - I have noticed a *significant* decrease in the amount of cleaning I need to do when my husband is gone. Wiping the toilet less, less laundry, etc etc. So that lightens the load a little too

~Eve
post #10 of 10
Hey there. I'm right there with you. Dh just flew to CA (we're in the UK) for a week and I'm alone with a 4 yr old and 1 yr old who never sleeps more than 2 hrs at a time. In the first 24 hrs he was gone the car died and both kids got sick. It's been quite a couple of days and 5 more to go.

BUT I have to say it's been easier than I would have anticipated. I have been easy on myself and reminded myself I have nothing to do but take care of my children. I've been making sure to nap when the kids do. DS seems to have risen to the occassion and has been in generally good spirits. There is definitley less cleaning and I don't have to worry so much about meals as when it's for all of us. And overall I'm proud of just getting through and finding what resources I have.

I've managed to get out each day which helps me SOOOOO much and I have evening phonecalls with friends to keep my sanity. And yep, chocolate to look forward to after bedtime.

Let us know how it's going and be easy on yourself.
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