Parenting & Family

Is parenting going to suck forever?

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  • Jan 10th, 2018 12:13 am
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Deal Fanatic
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Mar 31, 2008
9676 posts
1291 upvotes
Toronto
They might look like they're smiling at 5 weeks, but that's really gas. They're not smiling at you. That comes at around the 2.5-3 month mark. Don't really have suggestions on how to get better, but the best you can do now is start sleeping training. Yes, this early. Maybe start next week. But really, try to have 3 naps during the day for the baby. And along real sleep. Swaddle and do not co-sleep. Leave alone in the bassinet or crib. By 2 months, they should be sleeping mostly through the night with the wake-up here and there. But stretch should be going 4-5 hrs and longer.

The earlier you do this, and get your private time back, the better it will be for your healing. Continue to try breastfeed but top off with formula. Every new parent especially has a hard time breast feeding.
Newbie
Oct 17, 2013
96 posts
49 upvotes
Ontario
at1212b wrote:
Dec 27th, 2017 4:29 pm
They might look like they're smiling at 5 weeks, but that's really gas. They're not smiling at you. That comes at around the 2.5-3 month mark. Don't really have suggestions on how to get better, but the best you can do now is start sleeping training. Yes, this early. Maybe start next week. But really, try to have 3 naps during the day for the baby. And along real sleep. Swaddle and do not co-sleep. Leave alone in the bassinet or crib. By 2 months, they should be sleeping mostly through the night with the wake-up here and there. But stretch should be going 4-5 hrs and longer.

The earlier you do this, and get your private time back, the better it will be for your healing. Continue to try breastfeed but top off with formula. Every new parent especially has a hard time breast feeding.
Find what works for you, every parent does things differently, every child is different. What works for one person, might not work for someone else. It's those expectations that don't work out, that can be extremely stressful. Flexibility to adjust to your needs is so important, throw the expectations away. Just because sleep training works for someone doesn't mean it will work for you. Life with baby became so much easier when I did start to cosleep and I stopped worrying about what others (and books) expected. It will get better for you, get help, take it one day at a time, and eventually these really rough days will be behind you.
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 31, 2008
9676 posts
1291 upvotes
Toronto
earthygoat wrote:
Dec 27th, 2017 7:21 pm
Find what works for you, every parent does things differently, every child is different. What works for one person, might not work for someone else. It's those expectations that don't work out, that can be extremely stressful. Flexibility to adjust to your needs is so important, throw the expectations away. Just because sleep training works for someone doesn't mean it will work for you. Life with baby became so much easier when I did start to cosleep and I stopped worrying about what others (and books) expected. It will get better for you, get help, take it one day at a time, and eventually these really rough days will be behind you.
We have 2 young ones, both very different (opposite in many fundamental ways) but worked in both cases. You are right that every kid is different but you don't know unless you try and this is the best method to try first IMO since OP is asking for help dealing with 'closeness' issues, so we are here free to provide it. Whatever it takes to get independent sleep and habits is the best way to minimize parenting stress, especially for someone exhibiting Post pregnancy symptons. If it takes a few weeks longer, sure. But I don't recommend it to carry on for months.
Deal Addict
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Mar 9, 2012
1047 posts
332 upvotes
KITCHENER
You might not think you have PPD, but there is a good chance you do. Likely you're tired too, as newborns have an odd sleep pattern compared to adult. Plus you *are* feeding, so that's a drag on your body. I remember our first kid, even at 6 months, I got a call from the wife threatening to toss the baby out of the window if I didn't leave work right then and there.

It does get better, just give it some time, and perhaps go see a doctor for a professional opinion.
Sr. Member
Jan 8, 2009
638 posts
280 upvotes
GTA
My kidlet is in her first year at university and I still remember 1) how I felt like I was in this bizarro twilight zone until the 5-6 week mark when we *started* adjusting to life with a baby and 2) that I had such problems with breastfeeding that even after seeing a ton of lactation consultants it still wasn't working. I stopped breastfeeding, fed formula exclusively, the two of us really bonded as I finally stopped driving myself nuts trying to breastfeed her and she was no worse for wear health or intelligence-wise in the long run. This didn't stop me from feeling intensely guilty at the time around other people about bottle feeding but honestly? It felt so good to stop and I was so happy when I finally held her and just fed her using a bottle and she was getting what she needed and I wasn't feeling like such a failure AND after a while I just didn't care. You have to do what's right for you and your baby.

And how you're feeling is normal for all parents to some extent but yes, you should talk to someone, just in case. My sister had issues with PPD and so did several other friends and it takes lots of different forms.
Newbie
Jan 26, 2014
49 posts
5 upvotes
Toronto
I don't think I was feeling like myself for about 2.5 to 3 years. I would cry easily and even when driving. Simple things would push me to cry that would not before. I have an extremely high needs baby and would not have survived if I didn't have family members helping me at all times. I would travel to get family to help everyday, often travelling to 2 different family members in a day. If you are alone, it can be rough. I don't know if you can find family or friends to help. Ask people in your church or if you can afford it, hire a nanny. I would have been in much rougher shape without my family helping and to keep me company.

My son is easy to manage starting at 2.5 to 3 years old and I feel so much better, it gets much better at the end of the tunnel.
Sr. Member
Apr 14, 2015
508 posts
126 upvotes
Tsuu T'Ina, AB
Not everyone loves babies. Most parents have favourite stages and if newborns aren’t yours, I think that’s not surprising. Newborns are hard work. Three months is more fun. Six months hopefully they are sleeping through the night, which will improve your life more than you think.

I have had four babies and every time, I can’t believe how much better life is when they get to be around three. My advice is to buy a lot of chocolate, binge watch whatever while you’re nursing or rocking the baby, and take a bunch of photos because in five years you will forget most of the awfulness and the memories will seem sweet in a way the actual experience never was.
Deal Addict
May 31, 2007
4650 posts
1768 upvotes
Have 4 years and 8 months. I forgot how hard the 0-3 months are, because of overnight feedings, colic baby, they are not good at eating, etc.

Wife had PPD first time and undiagnosed until over a year later. Not anyones fault- more support is important and needed from spouse and doctor.

It seems having baby is so hard on the body, especially mental state. And to make it worse, you can't recover and sleep. And you still have to tend to the baby like 24/7. Baby's cry instinctively makes you constantly stressed/worried.

Wife couldn't breast feed and that's fine. It was actually so much easier bottle fed. Less stress for her and family. Both kids able to sleep overnight just after 3 months because bottle can really put the weight on. (this is a HUGE relief IMO) In addition, for the first couple weeks, I took vacation days and did the night feedings. I did the same on my days off. It was so hard getting up 3-4 times night. But my wife slept with ear plugs overnight and recovered faster. She was then stronger during the day and I slept in. Win-win.

Like others said, the joys of watching your children grow are incredible and I did forget about many hard times we endured with our first. Trips to the hospital, daycare colds, fussy/ colic baby, trowing up, etc all getting fuzzy now and stronger memories of new experiences having true, loving and heartfelt meaning.
Newbie
Nov 24, 2017
9 posts
2 upvotes
vkizzle wrote:
Dec 24th, 2017 4:06 pm
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.
Not my experience. The first six weeks were pretty tough, but it got quite a bit easier after that. I look forward to picking up my 19 month old daughter from daycare every day, and getting her up in the morning. We've a second on the way, and I wish we could have more, but we're probably too old :(
Newbie
Jan 3, 2018
11 posts
7 upvotes
Your feeling is completely normal. I love all the tips that everyone has given you.

This book helped me feel like somewhat of a parent: The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Problems: Sleeping, Feeding, and Behavior--Beyond the Basics from Infancy Through Toddlerhood
Authors: Tracy Hogg,‎ Melinda Blau
I've given them as gifts to 2 friends and they loved it. Check out reviews on amazon first before buying. Even better, see if you can borrow it from your library.

Your baby is only 5 weeks old. You are still healing from childbirth so go easy on yourself and remember that you are doing your best. Let go of all plans or you are going to stress yourself out more.
I'm a mom to a 2 year old and a 1 year old. With my first born, breastfeeding didn't really start working properly until week 6. He was on formula by week 2 so I was only breastfeeding by 50% of the time until I stop at month 10. With my second child, I start supplementing with formula at week 12. Both children are healthy.

For me, things got easier once my first child could sit up on his own. It got even better when he started communicating. With my 1 year old (second child), she points at her cup when she wants water.

One more thing, if you will feel better going back to work early, do so. I went back to work when my first born was 3 months old and it really helped me. Working is a lot easier and it was nice to have my lunch hour all to myself. I picked a daycare that had cameras which gave me peace of mind. Please do not feel guilty. Some countries have shorter Mat leaves and the kids survive.
Do what works best for you and your child.
One more thing, try to stay positive. For example, listen to positive/funny/educational audiobooks or podcasts when you can. Those help me when I'm driving or doing boring chores like washing baby bottles, laundry etc. Check out your local library for some great audiobooks.
Newbie
Oct 2, 2017
67 posts
34 upvotes
He'll stop sucking your breasts

He'll stop trying to kill himself if you even look away for a second

He'll stop making you spoon feed him

He'll stop waking you up in the middle of the night

He'll stop making you change poopy daipers

He'll start using the bathroom by himself, and feed himself and doing things for himself and being independent and you'll probably start missing all that crap he did when he was a baby because he's getting older and now he's calling you a silly goose and saying things that make you feel really old
Sr. Member
User avatar
Jul 25, 2008
717 posts
203 upvotes
Toronto
I had some post partum issues too... I don’t know if it was depression or anxiety but I was definitely not feeling like myself. I still loved my boy to pieces and took pics everytime he did something cute. Breastfeeding was awful up until 3 months. After that it started feeling good and I looked forward to that time. I breastfed my boy up until 16 months. I did pump and had a lot of spare frozen milk in storage for the trips to the mall or for the growth spurt cluster feeding days and for the 1 feeding my hubby did at 7am so I could sleep from 3am to 9am for the first month. The first 3 months I had a painful pin and needle throbbing feeling most of the time after breastfeeding. It was so painful I couldn’t sleep. Then there was the clogged ducts which were annoying and frustrating, but I toughed it out.

My husband also took the first 3 weeks off work to help me out but after that, he worked long days gone from 8:30am to 9:30pm 4 days a week. I literally wanted to kill myself. Being alone all day with a baby was driving me insane and I felt the day was like some twilight loop.

Anyways, it got better as he started sleeping 8+ hrs straight by 9 months and he was a pretty easy going baby. Now he’s a bit over 2. I do miss the days where he was immobile but it is easier now in general and seeing how much he grows everyday always fascinates me.
Deal Addict
Feb 9, 2009
4939 posts
2481 upvotes
I find when they turn 18 months or so to start being the fun stage -- they are running around, they can be somewhat busy on their own while your in the room with them (colouring, playing with items, etc) and they are starting to learn to talk.

I found when my daughter was an infant, it was pretty boring and I wasn't into it as much as I wanted too (Im a Dad and realize my wife did most of the heavy lifting at that stage) -- now Im even more into it then my wife. I just love her smiles, her cute words, her zest for life -- for me this is where I really found the fun in being a parent. Of course we all love our babies when they are small and cute and cuddly but there isn't much to do either lol... just remember this stage will go and GO FAST... before you know it, your child will be walking, talking and being their own person -- and then you'll truly see the difference and feel the love...
Newbie
Aug 31, 2014
43 posts
16 upvotes
Toronto, ON
I'd caution on the baby whisperer or any of the books/ website/ Facebook Groups that "will solve all your problems". Every baby is different so if yours happen to follow whatever the books/website said to do, great. But don't let them drive you insane.

My boy doesn't sleep in his crib ever. We never can put him down "drowsy but awake" because he's already crankypants and wants to be held after a certain period of awake time. If you put him down he'll just go nuclear. When he was a newborn I couldn't keep him awake after feeding no matter what I tried. I was driving myself insane trying to figure out why I can't do any of these when the book says so, when so and so who recommended the book says her baby can.

And then I'm just starting to accept that my baby is different. He wants to be cuddled. I couldn't keep him awake after feeding, but now that he's older, he stays awake after feeding and actually rarely falls asleep by feeding.

Yeah... On some days I feel that it sucks big time. On other days it feels fine and happy. Take it one day at a time I suppose. For me it usually makes it go by easier if we go out once during the day. When it was warmer it could be walks, and now I try to go out to grab a quick lunch. Baby also gets to see something different whivh sometimes makes him less crankypants. It also gets more fun when they start smiling and laughing, so I try to see what I can do to make him laugh.

Oh and we also had breastfeeding issues... Didn't start to go smooth sailing I'd say until 3.5 months.
Moderator
May 28, 2012
9523 posts
1821 upvotes
Saskatoon
Exhaustion and lack of support are huge contributors to PPD. Societies that have lots of family and/or community support have a lot less of it. The important thing for a new mom is to recognize that you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others. Everyone will be offering you advice, some of it good and some bad...do what's right for you and your family and don't feel pressured to do things a certain way.

All children are unique and some are more demanding than others. I always joked, if I had had the last one first, he would have been an only child! I look back fondly at those "growing up" years but I'm glad mine are adults and can do things for themselves.

There are lots of resources online and in the community, so if you are feeling overwhelmed, check them out.

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