I Need A Fresh Outlook About S.N. Son - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 11:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am posting this here because I am at that "ground down" place we mommas of Special Needs children are familiar with. I told DH the other night that I didn't put in for this kind of "hazard duty" and that I'm ready for my nineteenth nervous breakdown. (Love that song!) Anyway, I'm just wondering what do the rest of you do when you are tired of caretaking and of putting your own emotions under lock and key so that you don't lose it at the expense of your special needs child?
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#2 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 07:29 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by calgal007
I am posting this here because I am at that "ground down" place we mommas of Special Needs children are familiar with. I told DH the other night that I didn't put in for this kind of "hazard duty" and that I'm ready for my nineteenth nervous breakdown. (Love that song!) Anyway, I'm just wondering what do the rest of you do when you are tired of caretaking and of putting your own emotions under lock and key so that you don't lose it at the expense of your special needs child?
When my son was ten weeks old I handed him to a neighbor(best friend) one breezy November day and didnt see him for ten days. I left with my husband and daughter and went one direction and she took him and left in another. I was at one of those points in my life where I couldnt take the high needs, screaming, withdrawing from drugs and alcohol baby anymore. That was a big breaking point for me and a revelation that has made me take stock in what I can and cannot do. I am not super woman. I cant do it all. I cant be a perfect mother, and I will have those bad mommy days. I wish I could say in the past two and half years that I have never lost it. I have more than I ever care to admit here, but it has happened. It comes at times when I am spent. I havent taken time for me. Time I now demand from my husband, time I seek out, time I ask for from family and friends and sometimes I have just told my husband "I'm leaving" grabbing my keys some change a few cds and getting in the car. I may be back in twenty minutes or two hours. I am still learning how to keep my own anger and frustration under wraps, to be patient, and to see my son for who he is, beyond what disables him.
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#3 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 08:21 PM
 
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IMHO the best way to deal with these types of breakdowns is to avoid them altogether. (Much like the tantrums that many of out children have- preventative measures are worth their weight in gold)
I take time away regularly, develop my own interests, and leave BEFORE I am about to explode. I also meditate or a regular basis, and try to keep my spiritual connections strong. All of these thigns help me to be a better mother to two very demanding children, as well as a model for how to take care of yourself.
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#4 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 10:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think no matter how hard the mother of a special needs child tries to avoid feeling overwhelmed, it's inevitable. Having a high-maintenance child or children isn't the same thing, although that is depleting as well. Leaving my special needs child to take care of my own emotional needs simply isn't an option because it is extremely difficult to find a caregiver who will take him on. Taking care of my own needs sounds really good on paper (computer screen?) but it doesn't always work that way in the real world.
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#5 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 11:03 PM
 
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calgal,
Both of my children have special needs- I just wanted to clarify that. I know it's extremely difficult to find caregivers, but I feel very strongly that if you do not take care of yourself, you cannot take care of your child. My caregiver is my husband. I literally trade time with him, to be able to meet my own needs. He also has his own night off, which he greatly deserves. We are much happier as a family for it.
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#6 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 11:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sigh -- DH takes ds with him on Saturday afternoons for several hours so I catch a break then. I am always free to go out in the evenings, after 8 pm when DH gets home from his job. By that time I am ready for jammies, not for going out! I think the reason I got a little defensive at your post, khrisday, is because of not wishing to acknowledge the truth of it. Sorry if I sounded snarky. Blessings to you!
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#7 of 9 Old 04-04-2003, 11:52 PM
 
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to you, calgal
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#8 of 9 Old 04-06-2003, 03:12 PM
 
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wow.

on the fence, your words are really powerful. thanks for that.

~sb
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#9 of 9 Old 04-07-2003, 03:11 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by calgal007
I think no matter how hard the mother of a special needs child tries to avoid feeling overwhelmed, it's inevitable. Having a high-maintenance child or children isn't the same thing, although that is depleting as well. Leaving my special needs child to take care of my own emotional needs simply isn't an option because it is extremely difficult to find a caregiver who will take him on. Taking care of my own needs sounds really good on paper (computer screen?) but it doesn't always work that way in the real world.
Have you tried getting respite care through the state or tried to see if any agency such as March of Dimes or the sort could help you. I too know what it is like to not have someone care for your child with special needs. It can be done. You may have to search far and wide but I would highly recommend this for your own peice of mine. Yes taking time for ourselves does sound and look good on paper but in our worlds, the breaks are needed for our own sanity.
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