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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I don't know the best place to put this, but this seemed the most logical.<br><br>
I hit my toddler today and I want to crawl into a hole and die. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"> Today has just been a horrible rough day, and I took it out on DD1. She kept hitting the baby in the head and thought it was funny when I repeatedly told her to stop. Then she kicked me HARD while I was changing her diaper. All of the years of my grandmother hitting me as a reflex came out in me, in one big slap across DD's thigh. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"><br><br>
I had to call DH to come home because I just could not handle it anymore. DD1 nursed for a while and seemed back to normal, but I feel I have scarred her forever. DH did come home from work early to help me out, and he now has the kids while I take some major cooling off time.<br><br>
This has just been a sucky week -- yesterday, I found out a childhood friend passed away and her funeral is this Saturday. Last I talked to her was 2 months ago and I didn't "get" that she was terminally ill...I just thought she was sick. I vowed that I would bring the girls up to see her, but I never did. I was a miserable friend to this girl, and she *loved* me so much, like a sister. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> On top of this, my MIL is recovering from thyroid surgery, but cannot come over to see the girls (and I can't bring them over either) because she had to take some radioactive medication for her scan tomorrow. I miss her being with the girls, and I have to admit I selfishly miss the break she'd give me.<br><br>
Sorry to ramble on so long, I don't know exactly why I'm posting this, but I guess I just needed to get this out of my system. Thanks for reading if you got this far.
 

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Mama, you didn't scar your babe for life. You made a mistake. Apologize/explain what happened to your DD, get some rest, take care of yourself until this horrid week is over, and then move on. We're all trying our hardest to be gentle, but sometimes learned behaviors just come out.
 

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Please don't be so hard on yourself. Your dd isn't scarred for life. You've done the responsible thing - recognized you needed a break and made sure that happened. explain to your dd what happened - she might not literally understand everything you say, but she will in her heart. You're having a justifiably hard week - you're not selfish to recognize you need alone time and you're not a horrible person because you snapped. It happens. The significant act isn't that it happened, it's that you've recognized it and are amending for it.<br>
take care.
 

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Wow. it sounds like you have had an amazingly difficult week. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
I am too lazy to quote, but I loved this from the above poster: "The significant act isn't that it happened, it's that you've recognized it and are amending for it."
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for the replies. I did apologize to DD immediately after it happened, but I still feel this sinking feeling. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Lately, I've been struggling with family members telling me that they fear my DCs will be out of control because I choose not to spank. So naturally, I feel, well, like a hypocrite for spouting off to my family about not spanking, and then going and doing it! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/angry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="angry"><br><br>
My grandmother hit me as a child out of anger, and I think about it every freakin' day, and now here I go continuing the cycle. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"><br><br>
I'm sorry to continue rambling. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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I am guilty of the same. Yesterday I slapped my ds on the cheek after he hit me hard in the stomach. He was climbing up and down the sofa really rough and I kept telling him to stop; then when I made him sit down he slugged me. He's not himself lately because he just had a slight cold, but I was so mad. I couldn't believe that I did it, but I also apologized right after. I also felt bad because he was quivering after I did it, like he was scared. I feel like a bad mom. I had a miscarriage two weeks ago so I'm fragile and more easily pissed off lately. I feel betrayed and sad.<br>
I also felt like I scarred him for life, but I hope he forgot about it already.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> I totally know where you are coming from. It is SO hard when you are so stressed having a toddler and being a calm mama all the time. It's made so much harder when you came from an abusive home yourself.<br><br>
I yelled at my dd for the first time the other day. She wouldn't go to sleep and was whining and whining and I yelled, "Lucy! Mommy is getting PISSED OFF! GO TO SLEEP!!!!" She immediately burst into tears. OMG, I felt like the worst mama. I came from a yelling/verbally abusive house. I totally flashed back to my childhood....getting yelled at all the time. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I immediately and profusely apologized to dd, hugging her and kissing her. She was asleep within 2 minutes of this. I kept thinking how I should have just done that in the first place, and how I had royally her [email protected] up.<br><br>
I still feel <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/guilty.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="guilty">.....<br><br>
I don't have any real words of wisdom for you, just <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">.....
 

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I'm guilty of it too! I had been trying a new bc pill (in the garbage now!) & my frustration tolerance & stress levels were awful. DH was working, working, working & DD was teething & being very needy, clingy & then nasty on & off. After shaking her milk around my bed (lovely), while changing her diaper, she kicked & kicked & then dug her toes into my foot (on a very bad scar that's always a little sensitive). I freaked, snapped & slapped her foot!<br><br>
It was awful & i cried for about 1/2 hour after she went to sleep. she, of course, was over it very quickly but that was the end of that pill, & the restart of working towards a kinder, gentler mommy. I was also raised being hit for everything, so it's a lot of unlearning!<br><br>
good luck & don't beat yourself up! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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I haven't been there yet--dd has just turned one, so I haven't had to deal with the frustration and defiance. I feel for all of you. I just wanted to mention that once in a while my mother really lost it and hit us, probably one or two times a year. When I think about what has screwed me up in my life, the spankings and face-slappings never occur to me. They weren't part of a consistent pattern. If you slipped up but you are a loving and caring, trustworthy parent, I think your kids will be fine. Really! You are smart enough to realize when you've lost control, and probably next time you'll know before you lose control. Take care of yourself! I'm sorry about your friend.<br><br>
Yours,
 

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Yikes! I've also been there. Rather than go into it, what I want to know is how do we get beyond abusive upbringings and find a loving calm to parent from? It blows my mind how often the response of spanking/hitting comes to my mind and I just cry, thinking about how awful I think hitting or yelling at a child is. Often, I will just walk out of the room and go scream, but then I just have a sore throat and feel bad for screaming. What do you all do? How do we unlearn our upbringings?? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll">
 

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I get really frustrated too and say things I shouldn't. Dd will be talking soon and she understands the gist of what I'm saying, even if not the words... so am also feeling rather guilty. I was up for two hours in the middle of the night last night and just lost it... got so upset.<br><br>
I think a large part of it is not living in the moment. When I really loose it in the middle of the night it's often because I'm thinking about what I have to do the next day; what I should be doing is thinking about the fact that my dd is going through something and needs her mama. When I loose my temper during the day it's usually because I'm trying to do too much at once and not focusing on this beautiful child who needs her mama.<br><br>
When I can somehow step back and remember that my most important job is "mom"... it gets easier somehow.<br><br>
Donno. It's not easy and we all have bad moments. Sounds like you handled it really well by getting some help and taking a break.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/grouphug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="grouphug"> Mamas<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>HotMama</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Rather than go into it, what I want to know is how do we get beyond abusive upbringings and find a loving calm to parent from? It blows my mind how often the response of spanking/hitting comes to my mind and I just cry, thinking about how awful I think hitting or yelling at a child is. Often, I will just walk out of the room and go scream, but then I just have a sore throat and feel bad for screaming. What do you all do? How do we unlearn our upbringings?? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"></div>
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Oh, how I'd *love* to know how to quickly unlearn the style of parenting that I was brought up with! In the past, I've been successful with redirecting DD1 and getting her involved in something else, and saying in my head "she is just wanting attention and I *cannot* allow my anger to get the best of me". Sometimes it works, sometimes I am too stressed out to keep my feelings in check and I will yell or...well, yesterday happened. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
Does anyone avoid their family members who choose to spank or hit? I think I need to do this, but it is so difficult because sometimes my family can be pretty great. However, they are very casual about hitting... Just the other day, my aunt was trying to get her 2 y.o. DGD to say "I'm gonna spank your hiney!" to my grandmother! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll">
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">s BTDT! I am very overtired and stressed this week. Baby is teething and both my younger 2 who used to sleep until at least 8 am have been up later at night but also up much earlier in the mornings! I have been up between 6:30-7am every morning for a week plus even if toddler goes down for bed at usual time baby is still up late so I am loosing sleep both at night and the morning <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">. I'm a wreck and ds has been really mouthy lately, I think it's diet related we are trying to cut out dairy with him but I know it takes a few days to see the difference.<br><br>
So on top of an older kid being mouthy etc, toddler is whiney, baby is whiney, dh is a total useless, not helpful but full of complaints jerk and I'm not getting sleep well you can see where this is going right? I've yelled and spanked this week <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I feel horrible and I don't want to do this. I grew up in a screaming, yelling spanking house and I don't want that for my kids but I can't seem to figure out another way that actually works for more than a few days.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Oh, how I'd *love* to know how to quickly unlearn the style of parenting that I was brought up with!</td>
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Unfortunately, I do not believe there is any "quick" way to do this. It is something that you fight every day (or nearly). Sort of like an addiction. Or at least it feels that way to me. I have found that what works best for me is to physically walk away when my children hurt me. If they hit or kick (or scream in my ear or pull my hair or whatever I can't tolerate), I put them down and walk away. That way I can't react violently and they learn that hurting mommy doesn't get them any attention. I have left my toddler naked (OK, so after that I had to clean up a puddle, but I didn't hit her), I've left my preschooler covered in chocolate syrup, whatever. But I've walked away and so far I have never hit either of them. For me, this is a major victory. Looking at it, it also uses some of the same strategies that addicts learn to cope with temptation.<br><br>
I think its also super important for those of us with this sort of history to take care of ourselves and get the breaks we need. I don't know about you all, but my problems always come when the week is going badly, when I'm stressed, tired, or hungry, when its late at night, that sort of thing. I am blessed with a supportive DH who will take the kids whenever I say "I need a break for a while" and several friends who will do the same. Build that sort of support network for yourself because it really makes all the difference in the world. You do NOT have to do it all alone. And don't let the "I never need a break / want to leave my child" people here make you feell bad if you do, in fact, need a break. We are all different and we all do the best we can. Sometimes I have to ask myself, "OK, what is going to do the most harm in the long run -- leaving my toddler in a less-than-perfect childcare situation for an hour or two or losing my cool and hitting or screaming at her?"
 

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I feel so relieved reading these posts, you all have NO idea. I too have smacked a bottom more than once in a heated diaper battle - actually those are the only circumstances i have ever felt driven to do so, because she normally is a pretty good and easy to live with person. I felt like something i would scrape off the bottom of my shoe <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:. But as someone else here said, 90% of my mothering is gentle and udnerstanding and without violence; i have to believe that that is what she will take with her into adulthood. I do take those VERY RARE opportunities to teach her about apologizing and admitting when mommy has been wrong. My parents always did this with me when they lost their cool, and it impacted me very much; i am very quick to forgive.
 

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Mom2AliKat, thank you so much for your post and for your honesty. I know how much it hurts to feel like you've lost control over being the kind of mom, or the kind of person, you want to be. Sometimes I lose my patience and just YELL. It makes me feel awful, and reminds me of my father who has a very short fuse.<br><br>
What I think I can do, though, is to not only apologize to my DS or DH when I've been an utter b**ch, but let him know it has nothing to do with him. DS is not quite 3 so I don't know how much he gets, but I want to be in the habit of letting him know I am willing to take responsibility for my behavior. I hope that he will learn to feel that way about himself too.<br><br>
The really horrible memories of growing up with my single mom are all about the times she either hit me, pushed me, threw something at me, or yelled at me (or gave me the silent treatment) and then later acted like it never happened and there was something wrong with me for continuing to be upset. I have such an enormous capacity for forgiveness but the thing that hurts the most is the absence of communication.<br><br>
I think it's important for us all to forgive ourselves too, and accept that when we interact with other humans there are always going to be a few bumpy spots. I don't think we are far enough removed from the animals to expect otherwise, but we all also have the ability to hug, and apologize, to say "I love you", and to admit our own mistakes. Kids are full of love and forgiveness - they just come made that way, right?<br><br>
I don't think you've scarred your DD. And though you've probably shocked yourself enough that you'll never react physically again, there will be fights as she gets older and you'll feel guilty again. We all will! It's OK!! We are all learning how to be different and better parents than our own parents were, and our kids will do an even better job that us.<br><br>
We also all know what our own limits are as far as need for personal time, sleep, eating right, etc. It's important to meet those as best we can and never feel bad about asking for help! MDC is such an important place for that!!<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/grouphug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="grouphug"> to everybody!
 

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I'm sorry you're having such a horrible week. You made a mistake. We all do. Just apologize to your daughter and try to move on. I found myself in a very similar situation on Saturday. Ds would not lay down for a nap and I wanted a nap as well. I found myself being very rude to him and yelling at him to lay down. Sometimes even not so nicely laying him down when he refused. Finally I stopped myself and took his little face in my hands and told him I was sorry and that I should not have acted so badly to him. Then I held him and kissed him. He seemed to understand (even though he's only 17mo) because he cheered up and hugged me back and fell asleep shortly after that. It made me feel better as soon as I apologized to him. I did beat myself up over it for a few days but I also learned from it. Big Hugs to you.
 

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You're human.<br><br>
Any parent who says that in the entire time they were raising their children they never once did anything harsh are lying to you.<br><br>
Don't beat yourself up about it. Learn from it instead.
 

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i think we have all been there.<br><br>
point is you know you made an error and i am sure from reading this you are working to improve...etc<br><br>
that is all that counts. that we are trying and doing our best.<br><br>
everyone is human
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/grouphug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="grouphug"> I just wanted to give everyone another hug. You all have no idea how much better I feel knowing I'm in the company of mamas who understand, and who have been there. I kinda thought I might get flamed, but I *so* needed to talk about what happened. Thank you so very much for listening and responding. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
BTW, today was MUCH better because I forced myself to get out, so I wasn't sitting around dwelling on what happened. I think we are all better for it (including the baby, who loves to people watch :LOL )<br><br>
Again, thank you, mamas. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 
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