I cannot be bothered with my newborn

(51 Posts)
jacinta1 Fri 08-Nov-13 12:12:10

My beautiful baby boy was 3 weeks old yesterday. I love him more than anything, I would die for him. But, I just can't be bothered with him. I love to give him a cuddle for a few minutes a day but that's all I want. It may be because I am very tired, and I am sure this is a big part of it, but I just want to be on my laptop, watch tv, meet up with friends for coffee etc. I have had a lot of help since having the baby and so there's always someone who wants to cuddle him but on the rare occasion that I have to have him I just try to get him to sleep so I can put him down again and if he won't sleep I hold him near my side so my other hand is free to go on my laptop or eat etc.
Since he's been born I've been really upset at my attitude towards my baby. I am not depressed, just lazy! And I'm not a lazy person. I worked up until 40 weeks pregnant, have worked hard all my life to achieve good qualifications and live an active life (before baby I was never bothered with tv or the laptop). I just have no time for my baby and it makes me feel very guilty. I always considered myself very maternal, and in many ways I am a good Mum (baby is clean, fed and comfortable). Baby is not neglected, but is it normal to feel this way? Howe can I grow to enjoy looking after my baby?

fairylightsintheautumn Fri 08-Nov-13 12:22:07

newborns are pretty boring. I did what I needed to do for mine but didn't really enjoy it properly for months. There's just not much you can do with them. There's nothing much wrong with sushing them with one hand and doing something else with the other at this stage, they won't know! It gets a bit better a couple of months in when you start to get some kind of response.

Thurlow Fri 08-Nov-13 12:28:26

Firstly yes, babies aren't that interesting to everyone. I never had that 'stare at them for hours' thing some other people will have. DD was very content to just lie in her playmat for an hour or so from a very young age, and I'd just let her do that. They can't respond or interact and that's not interesting to everyone. I was always happier out at baby groups or other mum's houses than just staying in with DD when she was very little.

Secondly, you've just had a baby and a massive change to your life, so it's not unusual to feel quite shocked by it all and need time to adjust. And you are of course exhausted!

But thirdly, it is good that you've recognised this and can talk about it, it's probably a very good sign. Just keep an eye on it. PND can come in so many different shapes and sizes and it can creep up on you. I'm no expert at all, but if you are still struggling to connect with your baby in another few weeks time I would be tempted to talk to a HV or similar about it.

I was like this with my first one but grew more interested in him as he got older. I love playing games with him now, at 2.4.I enjoyed DS2's baby days more because I knew (as in, emotionally really understood) how fast he would change and how much good stuff was coming up. Since I knew better days were ahead, it made me appreciate the good bits of newborn-ness more, if that makes sense. You're not alone in feeling this way, basically. It does improve grin

I also think part of my feeling of detachment was linked to shock at how much my life had changed in such a short time. You've spent your life to date living in one way; it's a bit much to expect you to dive into a new life full-on with no reservations!

It will get better. Congratulations on your baby flowers

noblegiraffe Fri 08-Nov-13 12:39:41

Babies are dull and newborns can't even smile. They get more interesting as they get older and when they start laughing when you do silly stuff there's far more incentive to play with them.

Nobody here is wrong. All this ^ said though be mindful of yourself. This is a massive change for you mentally and emotionally. Whilst you may feel fine, you might find you feel more fine in a few months and in hindsight wonder about pnd. I was in a weird place til 6mths. I never sought help. I do wonder sometimes if I should have. This place helps, post whenever and someone's always ready for a chat!

Madlizzy Fri 08-Nov-13 13:10:16

Yes, do say mindful as Minnie said. Your behaviour has changed and your life has changed. PND comes in many guises.

NotCitrus Fri 08-Nov-13 13:21:24

3 to 5 weeks is the hardest - after that if nothing else they get more interesting and the shock of birth starts to wear off. Look after yourself as much as you can and the baby will be fine whether you gaze at him all day or not. Best wishes.

Just wait till he smiles at you...
Congratulations grin this is normal

Teaandflapjacks Fri 08-Nov-13 14:01:32

Oh I had this - I had a shocking delivery which didn't help, and was unable to breast feed. When I got out of hospital the second time (retained placenta) I felt out of step really - i just wanted to sleep forever, then my parents came for two weeks and I was really glad. Because anyone could feed her, I felt a bit redundant and not required!

Anyway, it was when she started smiling at me it all changed for me - I got some feedback from her (first semi smile 4 weeks, full smiles 6 weeks with her) and she's eleven weeks on sunday and I get gurgles now, smiles all day long and some tiny chuckles. It has changed it all round and I do just sit with her on my lap making her smile all day and have a little cry at how cute she is occasionally (!).

I spoke to people and lots of people said they LOATHED the first 6 weeks because they are really very boring and it is a period of time to be borne - afterwards things get better and better. I fully concur with this to be honest (and didn't really believe anyone this was true until I found it out for myself).

I also implemented a bedtime routine around 4 weeks - more for me than her but it gave the day structure and this was much needed for me.

PND - yes keep an eye if you feel like this in 12 weeks or so IMO - because prior to that you are recovering from delivery and your hormones need to settle - its a massive shock to the system. And if you have a tricky birth talk to someone about it - if you felt it was hard then that is the case and worth acknowledging etc upfront.

DIYandEatCake Fri 08-Nov-13 23:54:41

Getting out of the house as soon as you're able might help... In the days when dd would sleep in a sling I used to wander round the shops for an hour or two, and going to baby groups is good as you meet people and feel less isolated. And try to use nap times to do something you enjoy sometimes... It's a big adjustment, going from working to suddenly being stuck at home with a strange and demanding little creature who doesn't really interact. I admire your honesty - there were many times I felt as you do.

lockie1983 Sat 09-Nov-13 08:39:54

I wouldn't wait another twelve weeks to talk to someone. PND comes in all forms and so does the treatment, it doesn't mean anything is wrong with you, it doesn't mean it will be straight on to medication. And if anything, getting it out there helps to process how you are feeling.

Please confide in your husband, he should be propping you up right now.

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 09-Nov-13 08:47:56

I have a theory that the reason why babies don't smile until 6 weeks old is that is the point where the birth hormones have worn off; the novelty has worn off; and the tiredness is really wearing. So at the point where (in days gone by) we might have abandoned them in a forest or a cave because they are just such hard work, they smile at us and cement the parent / child bond.

OP, you are certainly not the only one who feels / felt like this about their baby. It doesn't help when pretty much every film, TV show, magazine is full of mums gushing over their newborns the second they arrive.

Personally, I felt very detached from DS when he was born: he was prem, stayed in hospital after I was discharged and it was 11 weeks before he smiled. I loved him very much, but felt I was going through the motions with him in terms of his card. But something kicks in and they do become more interesting and interactive. Sometimes it does just take time.

BlingLoving Sat 09-Nov-13 08:59:35

Op you are very brave to admit how you feel. And like every other poster says, this is normal and ok and you shouldn't blame yourself. It will get better. The first 6 weeks are hell and the next 6, while better, are still hard. I agree that you should monitor yourself for pnd but I suspect your dr would tell you what mine told me when I had a chat with her about how I was feeling - she said that I was doing all the right things ie asking for help, sleeping when I can, acknowledging the problem. She said if I still felt that way in a few more weeks to come back. But by then I was feeling a bit better.

I will never forget taking ds to a friends house when he was about 3 weeks. I was miserable, tired, bored, and couldn't understand why I had fought so hard to have this baby. She took him from me and stood in her kitchen holding him and singing and dancing and clearly having a great time. I was gob smacked. I simply could not understand what could be fun about playing with my awful little baby...!

Ds is now a delight and I wouldn't send him back for the world. But I admit, I worry about having a second, even knowing it will get better.

You are doing great!

MiaowTheCat Sat 09-Nov-13 10:46:07

Not everyone is a newborn person. I'm not - I went through the motions with both of mine to meet societal expectations of how I should be gooey eyed and besotted.

I'm much much more of a toddler person - once they hit the 7 month+ stage they're soooo much more interesting and fun to be around - I regard those snuffly newborn months as the boring grindy bit to get to to get through to the fun stuff!

TheCountessOlenska Sat 09-Nov-13 15:29:49

I felt exactly like this. Like bli ng lover I was confused when people would seem to have fun with dd - i just found her overwhelming and spent all her awake time wishing she would go to sleep blush I felt fiercely protective of her but not interested, charmed or "in love" sad I thought i was fine but looking back the first year was hard for me - i really wish i'd had the self-awareness that you have OP and questioned my responses to her and my mental health a bit more.
Having dc2 has really brought it home to me that i was missing out with dd as with 2nd baby i have been fascinated by his every gurgle smile . See how you feel over the next month but don't ignore your feelings like i did, you deserve to enjoy your baby.

LostMarbles99 Sat 09-Nov-13 22:51:50

You say you would die for him but then in the next breath that you can't be bothered with him- that's definitely not normal. I would speak up as soon as possible about how you are feeling.

I would not let this go on if I were you.

tiktok Sun 10-Nov-13 09:15:41

I agree, this isn't normal....all the posts reassuring the OP that is is normal and things will get better in time are so misleading.

OP, you have described a situation which needs help. Most mothers of newborns want and need to be close to their babies more than 'a few minutes a day'. I don't understand how people can normalise this and I think they are not reading your post properly.

You know yourself this is not right as you feelings upset you.

You can speak to your health visitor and share just how sad and dismissive you are - this is not your fault, it's not you being lazy, it's a disconnect from your baby and you need proper help.

I hope you get the right support to have the sort of relationship you want and know you and your baby deserve.

trish5000 Sun 10-Nov-13 09:21:56

A few questions. Do you think that you may have had too much help, and so you now see him as a bit of an inconvenience?
Are you sleeping well [I know, bit of a silly question with a newborn]
How do you feel about other parts of your life?
Was the birth pretty straighforward?

dozeydoris Sun 10-Nov-13 09:25:19

Is it struggling to adapt to losing your freedom - it is such a change to not being able to do what you want when you want but having to put boring baby first all the time. Then you feel some resentment at the tiny person who has turned your life upside down.

Ime the love grows, can you not hold baby or put baby in a sling whilst on laptop, or watching tv? Are the visitors stopping you from watching tv etc so making you more bored, there is only so much you can chat about with a new baby if you aren't doing other thngs too.

trish5000 Sun 10-Nov-13 09:30:09

Are you strugggling to do other tasks too?

QOD Sun 10-Nov-13 09:34:15

I do know what you mean but you do seem to be a bit cold about him. Look up PND questionnaire and see how you score?
Dd bored the crap out of me for a long time, I felt lonely when alone with her

TooTabooToBOOOOO Sun 10-Nov-13 09:38:19

Just wanted to add that you may not feel depressed but that doesn't mean that things are well.

I've been feeling detached and anxious for a few months but was fine because I wasn't feeling down.

The change came on hard and fast, when it hit and last week was horrific. I made myself speak to GP even though I thought I'd be told I was just tired (8mo, 9yo, BF, sleep issues) but she diagnosed me with PND and I'm on a low dose of ADs.

I actually feel ok again this week. Im relieved I contacted GP when I did or things could have spiralled beyond my control.

Newborns are boring BUT you shouldn't be as uninterested or as detached as you describe, please speak to someone - HV, GP, MW, just so they can catch you should you fall.

You are not failing your baby by feeling like this, it is happening to you am

TooTabooToBOOOOO Sun 10-Nov-13 09:39:16

And you can feel different with the right help and support flowers

juneau Sun 10-Nov-13 09:43:22

I'm sorry, but this is not normal and all the posts saying that it is are wrong. Your boredom and disinterest in your tiny son are a clear indicator that you could well have PND. It's true that newborns aren't that exciting, but I never felt like you did about my DSs. I felt exhausted, yes, utterly sleep-deprived, weepy at times, struggled with BF-ing, etc, all of which is entirely normal. Complete disinterest in your DS? No, not normal. Please speak to midwife or HV about this immediately and get the help you need.

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