This is impossible! How does anyone make this work??

(188 Posts)
Haddock73 Mon 02-Sep-13 14:17:34

As soon as I get ds1 (2) down, ds2 (9days old) kicks off. I've been up since 2am and frazzled! Ds2 won't sleep, he's been up for hours now and I physically don't know how to do this without dh being here!

Ds1 feels neglected, haven't bonded with ds2 because I feel resentful of him crying and crying and CRYING all the time nd taking me away from ds1, then I hate myself for feeling this way.

Crying and crying and feel like I can't cope and made a huge mistake.

When will it get better??

crazypaving Wed 04-Sep-13 12:58:55

oh Haddock, big hug. You poor thing, the early days and weeks are so hard.

Mine are now 11m and 2.10, and the early days are now (thankfully) a blur. It is so much easier now, and the beginnings of a relationship are so wonderful to see with my two.

The anticipation of your first trip out is always worse than the actual event. Yes, there will be times when it all goes completely, disastrously wrong, but you know, I'm a tougher person now than I was then as a result of it! You learn to brazen it out. I remember carrying a kicking, screaming DS1 across a carpark with a kicking, screaming DS2 in the Moby. Christ it was awful, but I didn't look at anyone and walked with a slightly manic smile on my face to the car and manhandled them both in.

There are days when everything is awful - you're tired, they're badly behaved and you just shout a lot. And then there are the days when everything goes smoothly and you feel brilliant and love them both madly - hang on to those days, and forgive yourself for the others!

In terms of bonding with #2, to my mind it's normal to feel like you'll never love number 2 like number 1. You know number one, you've been buddies for a while and he can chat to you and you have a laugh together. New babies are just bundles of need. You will get there and you will love this new baby madly too. It may take some time.

In the meantime, planning is your friend. Aim to get out in the morning and the afternoon as I find both DCs behave better when out. And are more tired as a result of it. Find baby groups, go to your local children's centre, go to the library, go to the park. Or just go to the shop to buy a pack of wipes. Whatever. But try to get something into each slot so the week doesn't feel insurmountable. Any interaction with adults is good.

Things will get easier with your oldest. I remember just feeling so unbelievably guilty that I'd wrecked his life. My babies have both been screamers (little darlings). He won't remember this time and before long DC2 will be his number 1 fan.

Speak to your HV about how you're feeling. They will have heard it before and they will not think you're an unfit mother. They will want to support you.

you are doing brilliantly. It is so hard. Another big hug.

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Wed 04-Sep-13 13:47:54

Yes, definitely tell the HV. They can tend to ignore 2nd time mums a bit, as they think we've been there and done it. Tell her what you've told us about how you feel, esp needing to lock yourself in the bathroom. You need some help OP, they won't guess unless you tell them.

They do go through questions looking for PND. Be honest. Help is there to direct at people who need it. They'll keep a much closer eye on things for you but they won't think you're an unfit mother. How could you be when you care so much.

Keep posting if it helps. So many mums have been where you are now, you'll always find virtual support here, you just need some in RL too.

Haddock73 Wed 04-Sep-13 14:29:34

Hearing all your stories of the early days and how things have I improved makes me feel aload better.

How's this for a realistic routine?:

Mon am - ds1 nursery
Mon pm - supermarket to buy dinner, ds1 to help

Tues am - ds1 nursery
Tues pm - library

Wed am - ds1 nursery
Wed pm - get ds2 weighed at HV every other week,

Thurs am - playgroup (play and stay session)
Thurs pm - supermarket to buy dinner

Fri am - soft play
Fri pm - park (too ambitious??)

DS1 in his room with a stairgate on. It matters not if he sleeps. He can play until he does.

As soon as he is in his room, feed ds2, in your bed. Have a rest. When he is done, DP to take him away for some DS-DF bonding, bringing him back the next time he needs a feed. Every time he cries, you feed, but inbetween, you rest.

btw, DP has baby until midnight every night whilst you sleep, being brought only for feeds (and do feed every time you hear a cry or a wind up to a cry) and then from midnight you take over.

I think you might need some breastfeeding help too as crying like that all night isn't usual unless the baby is hungry. Do you give the baby two or three sides each time?

I had 21 months between mine btw. I KNOW it is hard. And you are not a failure for finding it so because it IS.

But it is doable. Your parenting is judged much much later than now, and if ds1 stays up until midnight and has rice-pudding for his dinner you won't even remember then, and nor will it be the make or break of him.

crazypaving Wed 04-Sep-13 14:45:39

Looks like a good plan! But if you don't stick to it, don't feel like you've failed. Sounds daft but try to relax and go with the flow. And cbeebies as much as you need. Every day is an accomplishment!

dizzy77 Wed 04-Sep-13 14:57:31

Haddock sounds like you are doing really well. Ds1 is 2.3 and ds2 3mo and things are already much, much better. I also second getting out - park and a sling works well, even though ds1 climbs up things/runs further than i can chase especially when I'm feeding ds2. Even toddler groups and soft play (to a point) is possible with baby in sling. Ds1 is still at nursery 1 day a week and I find that a massive help for my sanity as it breaks up the week and gives him different company. I remember with ds1 trying to find a "shape" to my week took time - with the activities you've outlined above sounds like you are getting there really fast. Each time you repeat a new thing it gets easier and you learn how to make it work better (getting them both in the car! Tip: strap toddler in first then come back for tiny in car seat as the tiny cant move! tiny will be screaming no doubt so commiserate with toddler when you put them in ).

Already those first few hellish weeks seem a long way off. I would definitely mention to the HV how you're feeling - they may even invite you to groups especially designed to help.

Haddock73 Sat 07-Sep-13 14:03:08

Things aren't getting any better. Cried uncontrollably all morning amd shouted at ds1. Dh thinks I have pnd. Feel very low.

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Sat 07-Sep-13 14:13:19

I think your dh is right. Please speak help, there will be a weekend contact for hv or there is the crysis line. Did you talk to your hv? Did they offer help?

Get to the doctor on Monday, preferably with dh aol he can tell them what's really happening. Or if that's not possible, write it all down with examples like you have on here so you can't accidentally down play how you're feeling.

You need help and professional input op. And is your mum around and able to help? Even if it means a trip of hundreds of miles. Look for help from every avenue. Do it today. Don't let this get worse.

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Sat 07-Sep-13 14:24:10

Also, have a look at the Edinburgh postnatal depressionn scale. Sorry can't link. I think it'll prove to you how much you need to get help.

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Sat 07-Sep-13 14:37:38

crysis website and their helplines are open now if there is no way to get local help.

shamble Sat 07-Sep-13 18:12:14

sorry you're still struggling. here's a shortened version of the Edinburgh PND test - it's obviously not a particularly detailed one but might be good to have a look at. Another hug for you.

Haddock73 Sat 07-Sep-13 18:29:49

I did the Edinburgh postnatal scale online and scored a 20...am assuming that means I'm pretty likely to be at risk of getting pnd. I have a midwife appointment on Monday and a HV appointment on tues so I will tell them how I'm feeling then. I'm petrified they will think I'm an unfit mother though. I love my children I just feel so low at the moment.

NeopreneMermaid Sat 07-Sep-13 18:54:04

Haddock, I really feel for you and totally empathise. My two have the same age difference and I could not do that first year again if you paid me (they're now 3.6 and 1.6). We had weeks on end of hourly wakings EVERY night

Best advice I got was from my best friend who had her two just before me: All you have to do is halve your standards on what is acceptable parenting. grin

You sound like me with the constant entertaining and I admit I'm only starting to accept this advice seriously now.

Other things that really helped me:
1. Sling
2. Childminder for dc1 9-3pm 3 days a week
3. SureStart Centre - gave me advice on sleep, referred me to a counsellor, got me on a parenting programme (Incredible Years) and to a Stay & Play group (and made me see walk the music classes, etc I was doing were just exhausting me and weren't actually enjoyable for me or the DCs)
4. Moving DC2 into his own room at 10 weeks stopped the hourly wakings from the first night
5. Doctor: upped my usual dose of antidepressants and added beta-blockers for the anxiety I developed after DC2. Now had pnd confirmed.

You will find what works for you. The fact you're even concerned you're a bad mum suggests you're not! smile

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Sat 07-Sep-13 19:08:12

Of course you're not an unfit mother!

You're an amazing mother because despite feeling so very dreadful you are still feeding, clothing, caring for and even playing with your dc!

Tell your mw tomorrow, write it down first or just print your posts from this thread. You'll feel so much better just offloading a bit and she will help you. Try to leave dc1 with someone if you can.

Good luck haddock, let us know how you get on when you're feeling up to it.

BeachComeRainOrShine Sat 07-Sep-13 19:12:31

I haven't read to the end of the thread but Haddock I am in tears reading it just at the memory of life when my ds was born. There are 21 months between my dd and ds, all my ds did when he was a baby was cry, my dd pretty much got ignored.

I struggled for a very long time and although I knew I had to look after my ds and did so, I didn't love him. Life was so bloody hard & exhausting dh & I were in marriage counselling by the time ds was one.

I can honestly say by the time ds was 2 life had improved massively, I loved my ds with all my heart same as my dd and dh & I were back on track. Ds is now 8 and dd almost 10 and life is good, but just the memory of those days has reduced me to tears.

It is bloody hard haddock I know the only advice I can give you is that there is light at the end of tunnel but no one can tell you when you will see it. So in the mean time do whatever you need to to get through every day, ask for help from anyone & everyone, and definitely don't worry about other people's opinions.

HPsauceonbaconbuttiesmmm Sat 07-Sep-13 19:14:09

And yes a score of 20 suggests depressive illness is likely but you need to discuss it with a doctor of course. Over 10 is a red flag and maximum possible is 30.

bigkidsdidit Sat 07-Sep-13 19:14:54

Haddock, bear in mind PND is INCREDIBLY common. You will probably be the third mother that day they see with it. They might have had it themselves, or their sisters, or friends. It is very normal. They will not bat an eyelid, just talk to you and sort you out and get you he help you need. They most certainly will not think you are unfit, I promise.

Best of luck x

nextphase Sat 07-Sep-13 19:41:43

Haddock
Sorry to hear your struggling.
Yes, please speak to your HV. They may not do anything more than keep an eye on you for a few weeks, with a couple of extra visits. They will NOT see you as a bad mother - the fact that you are even contemplating a schedule as you typed above is a sign of how much you feel your letting your kids down, and want to change that.

We had the most success with stay and play - confined space, so DS1 couldn't go too far, and enough eyes to keep an eye on whichever child needed it, without there being so many everyone assumes someone else is doing it.

Park was hard work, as DS1 was determined to start climbing (2 year gap, practically to the day here), and it was impossible to keep up with him.

Our stretchy wrap was my saviour (I never got on with the ergo and new baby). Have a look when your local sling group meets up - that can be an afternoon's activity.

I felt better getting out once a day. Twice was sometimes too much, but see how it goes.

Good luck, and keep talking here if it helps.

nextphase Sat 07-Sep-13 19:43:05

Oh, sorry, and if you don't think you'll be able to get your feeling across without masses of tears to the HV or GP, write things down in advance, or print off your first message from here.

thanks

Mumzy Sat 07-Sep-13 19:56:11

When ds2 was a new born was ds1 at nursery/ play group from 9.30-12.30pm ( lunch at nursery) then I'd pick him up and take both to the local 1 o'clock club until 3.30pm. Ds2 would nap in the pram for most of this and ds1 was entertained for that time while I could sit, have a cup of tea , play with ds1 for a bit and chat to other mums. Ds1 was knackered by the time we got home at 4.00pm and would watch tv while I cooked tea, fed ds2. Then tea, bath and bed by 6.30pm for ds1. I think getting out for at least part of the day is crucial. Entertaining a toddler is so much easier outside as there is always something to see: people, animals, traffic, cranes. Also babies tend to drop off quicker when rumbling in a pram and being outside in the fresh air just lifts the mood. I made some great mum friends at 1 o'clock club and various toddler groups which kept me sane during the early years

Mumzy Sat 07-Sep-13 19:57:33

'My routine was ds1 at nursery'

Haddock73 Sun 08-Sep-13 03:38:58

Thank you everyone. Dh and I had a huge sleep deprived row last night and worried he's getting fed up of my tears and feeling low.

I'm going to speak to HV on monday I can't continue feeling like this.nits horrible and lonely.

Thank you for giving me somewhere to talk when I've been feeling horrendous.

boysrock Sun 08-Sep-13 03:58:16

You poor love. 18 mo age gap is horrific when they are that age. Mine are 8 & 9 now and it is a lovely gap when they are older. You have the good bits to come!

Fwiw I think you are completely sleep deprived. It sounds as though the only support you have is your dh and hes knackered too. Although not as tired as you. You are trying to recover from giving birth too. Try and be kind to yourselves. Give yourselves a treat tomorrow and adopt a bunker mentality grin

Only advice I can give is to get dh to give ds a bottle of bm or ff (whatever suits) for a night at the weekends so you can sleep that night at least. Also get him to take two of them out so you can have a complete rest. At some point you may have to return the favour!! We still do that mow and it gives the othet one chance to recharge and do something in other. Or sleep

Wouldnt worry about routine at this stage either
It's survival.

Finally have you considered silent reflux? If he takes ages to feed and back arches whilst feeding its a possibilty.

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