I Don't Even Recognize Myself Anymore - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 05-10-2013, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
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I am not an avid forum poster, but I am desperately needing to vent my feelings. I feel like I have no one to talk to about this, because admitting that I can't handle being a mother would make me feel like a failure. So, where to start...
First, my daughter is now just over a month old. She was very much wanted by me. My husband had some reservations about the whole "parenting" thing, but was eventually on board and very excited for her arrival. My husband and I met as teenagers and have been together nearly 12 years. We knew our relationship would be different by bringing a tiny person into our lives, we just didn't realize how much things would change.
Our daughter is VERY needy. She cries All.The.Time. She also wants to be held constantly. If we aren't holding her "the right way" she cries. We spend all of her waking time attempting to please her to keep her from crying and praying she'll just go back to sleep. I take care of her around the clock. My husband does not get up with her at night, so my only relief would be when he gets home from work. He can't handle her crying and refuses to, in his eyes, bend over backwards to try to make her happy. So when she starts fussing, he can handle about 15 minutes of it, then gets completely fed up and angry and she's back in my lap. I frequently feel at my wits end. I even scream at her out of stress and frustration. This is not me. I am not that person. I don't even recognize myself anymore.
This is taking a HUGE toll on our marriage. It seems like all we do is bicker. We used to have a good marriage and prided ourselves on the fact that we got along so well with each other. Now, we are either arguing or ignoring each other. Both of us are in such an unhappy place right now, that we aren't trying to work together to be parents or sympathize with the other's feelings of frustration. We have both struggled with depression for as long as I can remember. The stress, lack of sleep, and feelings of failing as parents has thrown us both into a deep depression all over again. We have just been going trough the motions of parenthood, but have had very few happy moments with our daughter. We've both had our fair share of crying spells and breakdown moments. Things seem to be declining so rapidly, and I don't know what to do.
I'm just sort of sitting back and watching as my marriage falls apart. I worry what this does to her, in the middle of all this. I feel terrible because I don't enjoy being her mother. And, I wonder if things will ever get better. I think this may be the beginning of the end.
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#2 of 6 Old 05-10-2013, 09:44 PM
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First of all, big hugs to you. You are going through a really hard time. I understand and can relate with all of it. I'm sorry you are having a difficult time.

I promise you that it will not always be like this. Very soon, sooner than you will even believe, your baby will be out of the newborn stage and things will be much easier. As far as your marriage goes, this happens to the best of us. I remember reading somewhere that having a baby is like throwing a grenade into a marriage. All I can say is that if you truly love one another you can make it through this. You just need to try and understand each other right now.

Is there anyone that can help so you can get a break? A relative, a friend maybe? You must care for yourself.

Here are some things that helped me:

Using a pacifier (controversial but saved me from going insane)
Co-sleeping so night nursing is easy
Rescue Remedy (a flower remedy - for me and also you can put two drops on baby's little head)
Having help
Talking to a therapist or support group

When I had my son, I was so shocked at how it changed my life. Suddenly, I had no freedom. I was resentful and had a hard time bonding. Then one day when I was complaining, my husband said, "well, should we sell him on eBay?" Of course he was joking, but I suddenly burst into tears at the thought of losing him. This was when I knew how much I really loved him. I know you love your daughter and you are not failing as a parent. You are just a human being going through a really hard time. It won't last forever. <3

Wife to one amazing husband superhero.gif, SAHM to DS bouncy.gif 10/09, DS babyboy.gif 10/19,  one furbaby dog2.gif, and lots of chicken3.gif!


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#3 of 6 Old 05-11-2013, 10:04 PM
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It is very normal for the marriage to go through a rough patch after the birth of a baby. It's a huge change, you're both tired, you have this tiny person who has constant needs. I know that right now, it feels like things are falling apart. Please keep in mind that this tough time will not last forever and you two will have more time and energy to put into your marriage as your baby grows.

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
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#4 of 6 Old 05-12-2013, 04:10 PM
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My DH and I had a really really hard start too. It seemed like everyone else's babies were these typical sleepy wonderful newborns and ours was just so different! We were torn between feeling jealous of them for having it "easy" and then feeling guilty for not being more contented with our DD. however, she's 7 months old now and things are much better. Still hard, but much better!

Things I learned:
-- Some babies cry a lot. Sometimes there's a cause and other times there isn't. One thing I did to keep from going crazy was constant research to find a cause.
-- Probiotics were a lifesaver!! DD cried for hours every night until she tooted and then she'd pass out from exhaustion. Turns out she needed some digestion help. We use Udo's Choice Infant Probiotics from Sprouts.
-- Cosleeping is not as scary as I thought. As soon as I brought her to bed with me (and strictly adhered to the rules), we all slept much better.
-- It turns out DD had reflux. It took removing ALL trace dairy, soy, citrus, alcohol, and caffeine from my diet and now she's phenomenal. It was really hard to overhaul my diet but so worth it!!
-- I started seeing a therapist to help with what I saw as unreasonable rage--at DH, DD, everyone. Turns out there are pretty major underlying issues that I'm working through. It's really hard but also worth it.
-- troublesometots.com was a GREAT resource for a lot of my sleep questions.

Things really will get better but it probably won't happen quickly. I'm sorry you're hurting in your marriage. It about broke my heart how much it seemed and felt like DH and I hated each other. But the more our baby sleeps, the happier we are with ourselves, one another, and DD. you will get through this and you'll love your baby and DH more than ever when you're through it. I promise you that. Keep going and slowly but surely things will improve.

And I'm sure you already know this, but if you're nearing your trigger zone where you're going to get really angry at baby, set her down in her crib and leave the room until you don't feel so angry. No matter how much she screams from being left, her safety is the absolute most important thing. I'm speaking from experience. You have to get away if you're going to lose control.
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#5 of 6 Old 05-18-2013, 08:18 PM
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big hugs to you, and you are doing the best job you can. I was the same way. Felt the same way. I didn't want to be a mother, I wanted to take my child back to the hospital, and leave her there. But, I can tell you that it does get better. You need help. you need someone to talk to. Probably a therapist b/c at this time your husband isn't helping. and before you can fix you two, you need to fix yourself. I had wonderful support from my father who would come to my house and just sit with me. B/C I didn't trust myself to be alone with my child. once again, you will feel better every day. and i don't know if you said this or not, but being on medicine helped me a lot.

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#6 of 6 Old 05-28-2013, 07:35 PM
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I guess I'm chiming in late here, but I wanted to share my story. My daughter cried all day and all night for her first 2.5 months. Was it colic? Was it reflux? I have no idea. Our pediatrician gave us drops to give her to help with it, but I don't know if it actually helped. She's 20 months old right now and a HAPPY and healthy toddler. WE GOT THROUGH IT AND SO CAN YOU. Here are some things that helped us.


- Car rides. We would load her up at 2, 3, 4:00 in the morning if we had to and just drive. She would sleep and it would give us peace. And, if we were lucky, we'd be able to pick her carseat out of the car with her still sleeping. I know it's hard to believe, but those delirious middle of the night drives were some of the sweetest moments between my husband and me. And believe me, there were lots of other moments of bickering, hatefullness etc.


- We used to walk and walk and walk laps around in our house. And we'd sing to her. Try singing.


- She liked the sound of the shower. It would put her to sleep. AND, it made me feel like a new woman to have had a shower.


- You could also try the hair dryer and vacuum. There's something about the noise that a lot of babies like.


- Find someone who can take the baby for just a little while at least once a day. Go take a walk.


THIS GETS BETTER. I PROMISE. My first month as a mom was completely overwhelming. By the end of the second one, I could see that there was a light at the end of the tunnel. And during the last, sweet month of my maternity leave is when I completely melted, and I began to enjoy my new life as a mother.


You can do it.


You can do it.


You can do it.

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