not enjoying being a SAHM these days - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 06-04-2010, 09:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have a 3.5 yo DD and 1 yo DS. Sometimes I work from home for a few hours a week on projects for my former employer, but have mostly been a SAHM since DD was born. For the most part, I have really enjoyed being a SAHM and felt blessed that our family was able to make it work. Lately, however, I find myself wishing I could out of the house and away from these kids. I just feel burned out, tired, and like I have no energy or patience for this. Most days I feel like "What am I going to do with these kids all day?"

It has been really rough since DS started to walk about a month or two ago. DD is often unhappy, whining, having tantrums, and demanding my attention constantly. DS needs constant supervision or he is climbing on something dangerous, eating things he shouldn't, etc. Neither one plays well independently, they're not really old enough to play together, and I basically get no break during the day because DD doesn't nap and gets hysterical if we try to have her do "quiet time."

It doesn't help that we don't have any family in the area, so it is tough to get a break from the kids. They have a hard time being left with anyone they don't know really well, so I am with them practically all the time. What do other mamas do when you feel like you need to re-energize and make it fun again?
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#2 of 7 Old 06-05-2010, 03:59 AM
 
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I'm a single, SAHM, so it's all me, all the time, so I understand how you are feeling.

I have become quite strict about bedtimes. I accept that during the day it will be all about the kids, but I make sure they're in bed on time (6.30pm for 2yo, 7.30pm for 4yo).

I find often when the kids get whiney it's because they're bored. Do you guys get out much during the day? I would organise it so you have one thing to do everyday. And if they kids start going nuts, just going for a stroll round the block looking at sticks and stones can be enough to calm everyone down.

Do you do TV? The kids watch a couple of cartoons at 3pm and I find it awesome. Usually they're starting to get a bit tired and it gives me a bit of down time before we start dinner, bath and bed etc. Maybe you could put on a DVD for your DD while the baby naps each day and that can be your 'quiet time'. You can read or go on the internet while she watches a movie.

I don't know if you're artistic at all, but I actually find craft time can be great sometimes. You can set up a task for the little ones (making 'stained glass windows' with cellophane on that sticky stuff you use to cover books - not sure what it's called where you are - is an easy and fun craft for little kids) and you can create something of your own. Or crack out the paints, put down a tarp and just let everyone go nuts. For days that I really can't handle the mess I use Crayola Colour Wonder pens and paper. They are clear until you use them on the Colour Wonder paper so there's no mess but the kids can draw.

Also, sometimes you need to weigh up 'me time' vs 'clean up' time. What I mean is sometimes it's worth opening a pack of dry pasta and getting some bowls and kitchen utensils out for the kids to play with because it can keep them happily entertained for a while so the clean up is a trade off. Sometimes you need to weigh up how much me time you need and how much clean up you're willing to do.

This got a bit long and rambling, I hope it makes sense and is helpful to you!

It's complicated.
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#3 of 7 Old 06-05-2010, 11:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for all of the suggestions--all great ideas. Things do go better when we get out more and have more planned activities, such as crafts. An earlier bedtime would definitely help. DD's late bedtime is part of the problem. She often is up until 9 or 10 pm and then I feel totally exhausted and like I have no time for anytime. Tonight DD went to bed by 8 pm, which is very unusual, but I feel much better. How do you get your kids to go to bed by a certain time? Bedtime is an area I feel I don't do very well.
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#4 of 7 Old 06-05-2010, 11:58 PM
 
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Originally Posted by flatstanley72 View Post
Thank you for all of the suggestions--all great ideas. Things do go better when we get out more and have more planned activities, such as crafts. An earlier bedtime would definitely help. DD's late bedtime is part of the problem. She often is up until 9 or 10 pm and then I feel totally exhausted and like I have no time for anytime. Tonight DD went to bed by 8 pm, which is very unusual, but I feel much better. How do you get your kids to go to bed by a certain time? Bedtime is an area I feel I don't do very well.

I don't know why - but I have ALWAYS been very strict about bedtimes........even with my full-time stepdaughter when I started taking care of her, I implemented it right away!

I'm not sure what I do......I think at first maybe have a schedule. EVEN if it is just a quick bath and then bedtime - they will know that it is bath and then bed.

Another good thing to do for your older one is to let her know an hour or even an hour and a half before bedtime that it is "almost" bedtime. That way they have time to get used to the idea.

The last and most important piece of advice is that you just have to MAKE them go to bed. I don't mean you have to let them them sit and cry and make them stay locked in the room. I just mean, really, they are going to bed.

I'm not sure if that is helpful But I have been successful at getting all of my 3 kids to go to bed at a reasonable time ever since they were young babies 8 or 9 months old.

Feel free to PM me with certain questions or what happened and I will be more than happy you help you out

I don't know what I would do without that time at night to myself..............I honestly think that is the thing that kills me the most when I have a baby is that I don't have the night to myself for almost a year!!!!!

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#5 of 7 Old 06-06-2010, 12:08 AM
 
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yup mine are just over 3 and 1 and i have been telling dh i am at burnout stage and he needs to be a SAHD

mama to one '07 and one '09
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#6 of 7 Old 06-09-2010, 06:42 AM
 
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I agree with Annie, that is pretty much what I do with the kids to get them to bed on time. That's just when they go to bed. There is no negotiation about it. I don't leave them to cry or anything, I think that because they go to bed at the same time every night their bodies are just used to it and start getting tired.

Also I find that with 2yo DS that it pays to only let him nap for an hour. He still needs a nap but if I wake him up then he's ready for bed at the normal time. If I let him sleep for a couple of hours he's more likely to have trouble getting off to sleep at night.

4yo DS goes to bed by himself, which helps too. I lie down for 15 or 20 mins with him and then get up. I think I just started that by saying I was going to get up for five minutes or whatever and then would come back until he was comfortable going to sleep by himself. Also, he sleeps with me, but he knows that if he gets up after he's gone to bed or wakes up his brother he goes into his own bed in his own room.

It's complicated.
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#7 of 7 Old 06-09-2010, 01:16 PM
 
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I agree about having a bed time!! I wanted to add that I loving just going outside. No matter the weather....cold weather we still go for a walk. Even if it is around the corner. Getting out and get fresh air/getting engery out. For me it is a good break.
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