Parenting & Family

Is parenting going to suck forever?

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  • Jan 10th, 2018 12:13 am
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Newbie
Dec 16, 2017
2 posts
3 upvotes

Is parenting going to suck forever?

After several years and two heartbreaking pregnancy losses, I am now the mother of a gorgeous 5-week-old boy. Unfortunately, I am finding myself becoming more and more miserable every day and I am starting to think that I've made a big mistake and that I am not cut out to be a parent at all. I think part of the problem is that breastfeeding has gone poorly from the very beginning, due to a number of different factors. He is about 50% breastfed right now, which is not the end of the world but not at all what I had planned on or hoped for. But even aside from our nursing struggles, I am finding that I just do not enjoy taking care of him and I'm not sure I really love him like I am supposed to. I spend all day alternating between boredom and frustration. Everyone said it would get so much better once he started to smile at me, but he started smiling for real this week and...it's cool and all, but it doesn't make me feel any better the other 98% of the time. To add insult to injury, my husband is adjusting marvelously, is totally in love, and always knows just what to do for the boy. I find that I am counting down the days until I go back to work and put my son in daycare. I really don't think I have postpartum depression--I have been depressed before, and this doesn't feel like that. I just think that I really have made a bad mistake and that I am too selfish and rigid to be a parent. What can I do to make this better? Will taking care of my son ever be less of a drag?
33 replies
Deal Addict
Aug 17, 2008
3823 posts
760 upvotes
Sask.
You need to discuss this with your doctor asap, could very well be post partum depression which is not the same as clinical depression.
Hoping things get better for you soon, congrats on the baby!

Btw, there is no shame in stopping breastfeeding, you being less stressed is better for both baby and you.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jun 8, 2008
3719 posts
1167 upvotes
Toronto
Its tough, and yes it does get better. I also had a tough time breastfeeding but my midwife got me linked up with a lactation consultant which helped immensely. Your feelings are not unusual, but please do go see your doctor. I was diagnosed with PPD after my second, suspect I had it with my first too but a toddler and a colicky newborn is not an easy combination.

Your child sounds like he's thriving and loved, whether you breastfeed him all the time, half the time or none of the time, it doesn't determine how good of a parent you are or what your relationship will be. He needs food and care, you and your husband are delivering that, so give yourself a little break, congratulate yourself on that and keep going. Please do go see your doctor though. PPD is not at all unusual. Take care of yourself though.
Sr. Member
Mar 7, 2011
782 posts
106 upvotes
Toronto
Sounds definitely like PPD to me. I had my second baby 7 months ago and even though it is very stressful at times, it does get better as they grow. Of course having a baby changes your life forever, but I’d say firvthe better. Of course, you kind of lose your freedom, you can’t just pack up and go somewhere without getting ready for hours earlier, but as you see your baby grow and learn new things each and every day, it’s gonna be the best feeling of accomplishment ever.
My baby is also only being breastfed 50% of the time and I will never understand why women feel so pressured to breastfeed their baby exclusively. You do what you can and as previous poster said before, the baby seems to be happy whether you give it breastmilk or formula. It doesn’t matter as much. So don’t feel pressured! Enjoy your little boy as he’s the best present you could have gotten this year.
Newbie
Jun 11, 2006
92 posts
94 upvotes
Hi

I'm not really a huggy person, but I really do wish I could reach out and give you a hug! The newborn days are tough.......and hardest when its your first. Lack of sleep, constantly changing diapers, a fussy baby who doesn't always sleep, that's already hard. Add to that nursing issues (which I also had and always had to supplement), which can make everything feel worse. I remember wishing that my husband could stay home and I could go to work!

But...it does get better bit by bit. There's no harm in talking to your doctor to see what he/she thinks. I think it's important to get other perspectives, I was so obsessed with my nursing issues, it really helped to talk with other people who have been through the same thing. It's easy to not think clearly when you are in the midst of it all. I also don't think everyone falls in love with their baby right away, but it'll come!

Also, if you have family around, take advantage of every offer of help :). If you can, get out by yourself when you can even if its just to walk to the mailbox. A few times, I'd go out to Walmart for an hr, just to have some time for myself! Also, do you know any other new moms? I found the support of other new moms invaluable, we are all in this together!

Best wishes to you!! Hope things get easier soon!
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2011
17107 posts
5395 upvotes
Ottawa
It doesn't get easier I'm afraid to say.
Children are a lifetime of responsibilities and is exhausting; but I wouldn't trade it for anything.
Please seek advice from your family doctor for a referral to see a psychiatrist.

Ask your parents or in-laws to stay with you for a few days a week; until you feel better.
Newbie
Sep 20, 2012
17 posts
12 upvotes
Etobicoke
It does get better! Try to get out every day, bundle up baby and go for a walk and get some fresh air, look for mums groups in your neighborhood to have some social time. I loved my local mums groups it was so nice to sit and have a coffee and commiserate about the sore boobs and sleepless nights. It does get better - you’re in the weeds right now and this too shall pass. Hang in there!
Deal Guru
Aug 2, 2001
14296 posts
4732 upvotes
I agree with others that you should discuss this with your doctor and find out if there is a new mothers support group to join. Perhaps it would help to talk to others in your same position who are going through similar struggles. I would also be open and honest with your husband/partner about your feelings so they can help as best they can. It could be as simple as watching the little one while you go for a walk alone to clear your mind.

While I am a new parent, I am confident in saying that your child will go through many stages. You will not like all of the stages the child goes through but that does not mean you are not cut out to be a parent. Surround yourself with people that love and support you (and it sounds like your husband / partner is a great support) to help you get through these times. Then when the child progresses to another stage perhaps you will feel like "Hey, this whole parenting thing is pretty awesome now that I can share my love of art with this 4 year old".


About breast feeding - there is nothing wrong if you feed your child formula. "Breast is best" does not mean that formula is crap. Many babies are not breast fed - and the fact you have already run out of colostrum means you have given the baby one of the most important things (immunities) with breast feeding.
Jr. Member
Apr 8, 2011
192 posts
38 upvotes
Another option instead of your doctor is public health. They have nurses or other health professionals who can help with nursing issues or self-care or even just to discuss parenting questions via phone or in person.
After my first I attended a "transition to parenting" group through public health. Really helped to know there were others who were struggling too and also not finding parenting to be as fun as expected. Just having something regular to attend every week actually helped.
Also having a newborn in the winter is tough as it can be more challenging to get outside or to have more sunshine (vitamin D).
The first couple months are tough because babies don't show much personality. You just little glimmers of it between all the sleep deprivation, feeding, diapers etc.
Deal Addict
Jan 2, 2015
1013 posts
385 upvotes
babystrollerlab wrote:
Dec 24th, 2017 4:29 am
After several years and two heartbreaking pregnancy losses, I am now the mother of a gorgeous 5-week-old boy. Unfortunately, I am finding myself becoming more and more miserable every day and I am starting to think that I've made a big mistake and that I am not cut out to be a parent at all. I think part of the problem is that breastfeeding has gone poorly from the very beginning, due to a number of different factors. He is about 50% breastfed right now, which is not the end of the world but not at all what I had planned on or hoped for. But even aside from our nursing struggles, I am finding that I just do not enjoy taking care of him and I'm not sure I really love him like I am supposed to. I spend all day alternating between boredom and frustration. Everyone said it would get so much better once he started to smile at me, but he started smiling for real this week and...it's cool and all, but it doesn't make me feel any better the other 98% of the time. To add insult to injury, my husband is adjusting marvelously, is totally in love, and always knows just what to do for the boy. I find that I am counting down the days until I go back to work and put my son in daycare. I really don't think I have postpartum depression--I have been depressed before, and this doesn't feel like that. I just think that I really have made a bad mistake and that I am too selfish and rigid to be a parent. What can I do to make this better? Will taking care of my son ever be less of a drag?
What you are feeling can be TOTALLY normal. Especially because you tried for several years and some difficulties, when you finally have the child you so dearly wanted when things don’t go as envisioned it’s even harder. You may feel torn that you should love ever moment of the sleep deprivation for a lump that seems to just poop, suck off of your boob, and even that is hard, and cry. You are exhausted, you wanted to breastfeed, but that isn’t going as planned, and you wonder if why you did not feel the unconditional joy that you should feel. You may feel isolated because as cute as a 5 week old is, they don’t offer much for stimulation.

You said youdon’t know if you are loving you son the way you SHOULD. I don’t think there is one right way. As long as you are caring for him, and tending to him, it will come. Don’t worry that your husband seems to be anamoured with him. That’s great, but he also doesn’t have the same demands that you do. Don’t be so hard on yourself.

This being said, please get out and do some things such as go for a walk either outside or at malls. Get out in to baby groups, and most importantly, though what you feeling can be totally moral, talk to a doctor or public health. Each person is different.
On a 'smart' device that isn't always so smart. So please forgive the autocorrects and typos. If it brothers you, then don't read my posts, but don't waste my time correcting me. If you can get past the typos, then my posts generally have some value.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Aug 16, 2010
4120 posts
592 upvotes
Aurora
It doesn't necessarily get better, or worse. The current suckage will most definitely go away ... to be replaced by new suckage. And then more new suckage to replace that. But amazing and wonderful experiences are equally building up with time. Can't have one without the other.
Sr. Member
Nov 13, 2013
815 posts
268 upvotes
OTTAWA
DiceMan wrote:
Dec 26th, 2017 7:08 pm
It doesn't necessarily get better, or worse. The current suckage will most definitely go away ... to be replaced by new suckage. And then more new suckage to replace that. But amazing and wonderful experiences are equally building up with time. Can't have one without the other.
I don't know I think it has to get better, at least in the medium term. Nothing is harder than a 4-10 week old IMHO at least in terms of the feeling of total exhaustion and being overwhelmed. Babies are cute and everything but I much prefer older kids and feel much more bonded to them than a baby. Even if my four year old's attitude makes me long for a docile baby some days.
Sr. Member
Mar 10, 2010
916 posts
105 upvotes
The first months are definitely the hardest. As others have said it does get better, and also as others have said, please seek help for post-partum. My partner had PPD after both children and it was extremely hard on both of us.
Sr. Member
May 14, 2010
536 posts
73 upvotes
Mississauga
Yes and No.
There will always be moments that suck but then there are moments that are so utterly amazing that you just deal with the suckiness.

But the most important part is to talk to people, I found the early months has me feeling so isolated and lost. Sharing and expressing and validating those feelings is very important.
Moderator
User avatar
Jul 5, 2004
22336 posts
2188 upvotes
I felt the same way when my little guy was very young. Considering I'm the father, I clearly didn't have PPD. We had a very high needs, difficult baby. Breastfeeding didn't work, bottles didn't go well, solids didn't go well, there was 7 weeks of colic, etc. It truly was a nightmare for the first year. I told numerous friends that I wondered if I was even cut out to be a parent. Then things changed. He developed more of a personality. He become more like a person and less like a helpless leach (if I can be blunt about it). The first year of his life all I wanted to do was go to work. Staying home made me miserable. Now, I can't wait to leave work and see him and spend time with him.

The stuff I'm saying sounds bad and a lot of parents could never understand what I describe, but it was my reality. I've realized that I didn't enjoy the infant stage at all and as a person, I wasn't cut out for it. As a result, I don't want a second child because I can't imagine going through the infant stage again. For me, it got 100 times better. Of course there are still challenges, and there are frustrations. Those will never go away, they will always be there, but I absolutely cherish spending time with my son now. Perhaps you're just one of those parents who isn't cut out for the infant stage. Or perhaps you're dealing with PPD. Or maybe it's combination of different factors. Either way, you should go speak with someone. What you're feeling isn't abnormal though
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