A LOT of the time parenting sucks. It is seriously time we were open about this.

I thought I was a shitty parent. I thought everyone was ‘doing’ parenting better than I was, because NO ONE else was saying one damned negative thing.

I’m pretty honest on Facebook about how amazing AND how shitty my mothering journey has been. And EVERY time I share something less than complimentary (only a fraction of the time, I really do love my children and think they are incredible wee people) I get at least 2 private messages and more as direct comments THANKING ME FOR MY HONESTY. Why is this? Why is it that in a world where more of my peers are parents than not, are we all pretending to each other that it’s high fives, cuddles and sweet dreams 24/7? Why do we only share pictures and stories of the glory and none of the hell?

A LOT of the time parenting sucks. It is seriously time we were open about this.

we're both totally over it
we’re both totally over it

It’s not all tears in my wine glass; parenting is also awesome and no parent I know would give back their child, but being in charge of a baby is the hardest effing thing on the face of the planet. It is not the actual tasks involved in parenting that make it so hard; it’s the absolutely exhausting sleep deprivation that sends you totally insane, and the monotony, and the seemingly unending, repetitious feeding/changing/getting baby to sleep, and the realisation that your own needs are so far down the list, and the sadness and futility and depression that this is your life now.

no glass is large enough
no glass is large enough

It would be nice if a truer experience of parenting were spoken about publicly. How come none of the books or blogs I read told me to prepare for insanity/ hate/ despair? And how come they didn’t say that this was normal?

I thought it would all be lattes and park dates, and a couple of nights where my cute little buttons would stir and I would weave my motherly magic and back to sleep they would go. I went into this parenting lark without an inkling of how hard this would be mentally and emotionally. More fool me, obviously.

Never have I felt SO MUCH RAGE, HATE AND ANGUISH as I have done as a parent.

catatonic with rage about.....?
catatonic with rage about…..?

My first child is a wonderfully spirited little man who would scream as though we were torturing him at every turn (going down for a sleep/ waking up/ waking after every light sleep phase/ couldn’t reach his toy/ lying on his back/ lying on his tummy etc).Whilst trying to resettle him mid-nap or mid-night I would feel a hot fury rising through my body and I imagined the most horrendous things happening to him. I imagined these terrible things and thought that would be a relief, this hell would be over. Then the instant he was finally asleep I would be bathed in warmth and love and look at pictures of him and marvel at what a wonderful creature we had made, how beautiful, how spirited!

happy
personality plus

My second baby is a little bliss ball. She is so sweet and calm and barely complains about anything. Even still I have felt totally overwhelmed at 4am when she won’t go back to sleep, or when her nap is short in the afternoon and it ruins ‘the plan’ for the day, or when she needs attending to at the same exact time as her brother wakes or vice versa. Argh!  And these are ‘normal’ children without any special needs. I can’t even imagine how much more difficult it would be if I were dealing with extra emotional/mental/physical challenges.

I’m glad I was never recorded around 2/3am where I’d say things like “I fucking hate my children”, or “What have we done to ourselves?” Which translates loosely to ‘I really need to be asleep right now, I cannot handle my life’.

I did not realise how strongly and quickly my feelings could turn to blind rage. So grateful I am that my life has been violence free, so that is not my ‘go to’ in desperate times. I have however: slammed doors, yelled, screamed, punched pillows, cried and felt utterly, tragically futile and pathetic.

no caption required
no caption required

My husband has been yelled at, picked at, belittled and complained about/to more than I would ever have imagined too. This is the man who I genuinely think is the best living man on the planet and in a heartbeat would marry again. Yet we have found ourselves yelling at each other and throwing around the idea of divorce in moments of exhaustion and despair.

It can be so incredibly isolating when you have kids. People think you are too busy to hang out, but really you are just a slave to these little dictators and their sleeping routines! There’s a loss of identity that comes with parenting: if you are a person who has/had a career that you are interested in continuing, how do you manage that? How do you ‘stay in the game’ without compromising your children/marriage? How do you manage childcare/work/life balance? These are genuine questions that I have grappled with (no perfect solution ever presenting itself) and I know many other mums and dads have too.

When well-meaning people tell me to “Treasure every moment” I want to scream and punch them at the same time. I try to remind myself that either their own parenting experience was so long ago that they’ve forgotten how long every day can feel, or that theirs are truly the most angelic (and probably boring) children on the planet (right? Don’t tell me I’m the lone asshole here).

I’m not trying to say that my lot is better or worse than anyone else’s life; I’m trying to say that everyone does it tough with young kids, but never in a million years would I trade my children (aside from every second day when I feel utterly murderous).

shhh
shhh

So to all of you who are feeling alone and imagining that everyone else is having the time of their lives, think again! We’re all in this together! In the old days we might have had our sisters/brothers/mums/dads/aunties and whole communities to share the load and reassure us that we are not losing our minds. Today all we have is the internet, and everyone knows that social media only shows us the glistening side of life and forgets the rest; a world of Facebook/ Instagram/ Twitter where everyone’s lives look AHMAYZING!

Here’s an idea: let’s talk openly about the highs AND the lows.

Feel free to share something, anything. Go on. It might make you, me, or someone else feel better….

Like my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/rioandsunday

And for more pictures of the fam:  https://instagram.com/rioandsunday/

125 thoughts

  1. I have read a few blogs now of people saying its not all bells and whistles but you are the first to describe the deep bowels of despair and rage. My partner just says I’m a hot head when i say i don’t even like them anymore and im moving out! It’s always linked to exhaustion but my explosions don’t always seem justified…. such as them talking to me (others have missed that the talking has been without a breath for 2 hours, through the only tv show i watch and with continous responses and concentration required). Very refreshing to read your article

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  2. When people tell me, ‘These are the best days of your life’, I just feel guilty. Maybe some people just do better with older kids. Now that my youngest is three, I finally feel a little of the fog lifting and get a sense that I might actually be a person with an identity after all. They are beautiful and I love them dearly. It’s ok to hate parts of it.

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  3. I don’t know I guess I am different but I found having a child an amazing miracle. Every time something was new to her it gave me a sense of the wonder she was feeling being alive. Everything was new. Similed at things like water on her feet would make her laugh or look amazed. I took her to Stanwell Park Look Out at four and she cryed because “It was so beautiful mummy. She Cryed when she heard Opera at 6. She has a wonderful sense of humor. Could dance natural. Now plays instuments by ear. She draws japanese animation and is sooooo affectionate that I painted a picture of her called “the hug”. Sure its hard but she is my family and that is family life. Living is not a movie and I have had far more challenges than a crying baby. And she still crys and I adore her for who she is. She has taught me to relax more, read book and even be a better person. She’s my world.

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    1. Yep, this was me too, back when I just had one! Every day was awe-inspiring and he amazed me with his new discoveries of this crazy world. Now, though, with two, it’s a whole new bloody ball-game…

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  4. I agree that having children is a challenge, but you could use this article to encourage others to seek psychological help. If you’re constantly in a rage and feel out of control you might need to speak with your GP. Also I don’t understand the need to put down mothers who have well-behaved kids (calling them boring). Why shouldn’t we be able to have angelic kids? We, women do everything right?

    I’ve experienced the sleepless nights, depression and anger after having a newborn and I think it’s the attitude that matters. If you cannot keep you emotions in control then how are you going to do so when you’re kids are older? As parents, babies are not a license to go insane.

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    1. thanks for commenting Rachel.
      I haven’t encouraged anyone to seek psychological help because this article isn’t about people who need professional help; it is about (what I consider) normal parents: People who have a real and difficult experience among the amazingness.
      I’m not trying to ‘put down’ anyone. Maybe try reading this with a slightly less serious disposition and you might see the humour as was intended.
      Great that your experience was so wonderful. Perhaps you needn’t read articles on parenting since you’ve obviously nailed it.
      Cheers.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. You also have experienced the sleepless nights . . . the anger. And that is the point my dear. Yes you love your angels but it was still hard. Yes it is a lot about attitude but it was still hard and that is the point of the post. And even you, with your well-behaved kids had at least a few hard times. If we all lie and say nothing but the glories and never mention the hard times then other new mothers might have these feelings and then compound the problem with shame thinking they are the only ones and they are just doing it wrong. So thanks for sharing these thoughts. It is important to know that anger and frustration is pretty normal and then you can just deal with that instead of also having to deal with guilt and self-doubt.

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  5. I hear ya sister! My kids are twenty months apart and it STILL is brutal. They are currently 4 1/2 and almost 3.
    I joke that I breast fed my second kid so I didn’t start drinking bourbon at 9 am. The thing is, it’s not a joke. My hubby would leave work and I see the bottle on the shelf and all I wanted was to find the bottom of it.
    I went back to work after when the first kid was five months old (My fault. I thought I was a super hero). But I went back to work when kid no 2 was six months old. Why? To get away from those suckers. FYI, if you are doing the working parents and family thing. There is no balance. That’s a lie. Everything is over / under balanced, it just depends on whose direction it is in.
    Those mothers that sit there and talk about how grand their children are and how breath taking every SINGLE WAKING MOMENT OF THEIR CHILDREN’S lives are either full of it, or the most boring people on Earth whose sole purpose in life is to live through others. Bah humbug to that I say.
    I can’t tell you how many times I’ve screamed into a pillow, waked outside to kick the retaining wall or punched the bed when nobody’s looking. After awards, at least more often than not, I realise I’m a bit of a knob, and go find my kids with my tear stained face and play a stupid game to make them laugh.
    Like you, before mother hood I had no idea I was capable of these emotions. I had no idea I could be filled such rage in an instant. I had no idea that a 2 year old peeing on the floor could reduce me to tears on a GOOD day. And I had no idea my heart would burst with love only moments after I wondered if I should go back my bags and head off ’causes this shiz is too hard.
    I once heard the best saying ever of raising kids: All joy and no fun.
    I’m not going to sign off and sign, ‘oh but they are little treasures and they’re the loves of my life’. As mothers we already know that. No mother without a crack problem needs that caveat when bitching about their kids.
    The fact is, this is harder than I ever imagined. And I’m thankful that we have the internet to unite us in this. To your post, I say ‘here, here’.
    Drink up. It’s the weekend. You’ve earned it.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. This is so refreshingly honest it made me laugh and brought back so many cringe worthy memories for me. One that is etched deeply in my memory bank is the time my eldest was approx 23 months and my youngest 2 months, I was mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted. George, 23 months, had always been a light sleeper, my doing, believing I had to tip toe around him during sleep time, no vacuuming, no TV, no radio, no talking, no sneezing….you get the picture, anyway it was 2.00pm one midweek Summer afternoon when we were living in the UK. George was asleep upstairs in his bed, I felt relieved, Harry, 2 months was in a slumber, the house was quiet, I could read and breathe! Within seconds the peace within the house had been disturbed, the doorbell rang! My thoughts, being irrational and unreasonable at the time (lasting 16years) I ran out of the house asking so called intruder of peace, what the hell they wanted at this time of day, did they not have any idea I had a toddler trying to sleep and I wanted quiet time? I was outraged! Then the realisation occurred, I was staring into the eyes of a bewildered elderly lady who was seeking charitable donations for her said cause, not deranged attacks by sleep deprived, emotionally spent mums, racing from their houses screaming “who the hell do they think they are ringing my door bell in the middle of the day”? I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry at my own stupid self, I instead politely apologised and crept back in the house, hoping she didn’t know my immediate family or friends and she didn’t feel the need to call upon social services! Oh the shame I feel now for those out of control moments. Fortunately no harm ever came to unsuspecting door knockers, my sons, my husband or my now beautiful teenage sons and I have have survived the first 18 years of parenthood. Good luck to all who embark on parenthood, it’s a roller coaster of a ride. X

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  7. “every second day when I feel utterly murderous” – haha, you are a saint. with me it was several times every day! It is harder than you thought – human being, meet life. News: there is no balance. And congratulations, you have sussed out another conspiracy of bullshit: Kids are not born helpless, they are born as single-mindedly ruthless survivors and they will test your mettle at every turn. Keeping a step ahead of bloody kids requires all the focus, native cunning, life experience and superior education at you and your partner’s disposal. Bless their little hearts. Its a joint effort,you and your partner need to present a united front against them to civilise them and instil into them a certain regard and consideration for others that is alarmingly absent in them at birth. All while learning to love them and helping them learn to love you. No wonder you are tired and frustrated! PS You do get used to a certain amount of sleep deprivation after a while. And I found it was all worth it, hope you do too. read Sun Tzu http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/s/sun_tzu.html for some more handy hints.

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  8. To the woman who wrote this article, you must be living under a rock as all I seem to hear and read from mothers is how hard it is, how tired they are, how much rage they feel etc etc. What I say to you and women like you is shut the hell up with your complaints!! Having a child is a privilege and you made that decision. YOU!! No one twisted your arm, no one forced you to do it, the decision was YOURS!! Are you really only just realising that you don’t have time to yourself, did you honestly think prior to motherhood it was going to be some sort of Disney movie only filled with cuddles, princess dresses and lattes with other mothers. Wake up! Some of us unfortunately weren’t blessed with the ability to have kids and it enrages me to hear women like you complain about something other women dream of being able to do. And I know you mothers are shaking your head thinking we don’t know how hard it is. Well as a single woman I have my 2 young nieces with me for weeks on end constantly, night after night after night. And everything you’re complaining about above is trivial, yes I’m there for the girls 24/7 and it’s my absolute pleasure. And i think of it, I’ve been in jobs where I only got 2-3 hours sleep every night, felt pressure, dealt with painful managers, was tired beyond belief, had no time to myself but the job, but you suck it up, it was my decision after all to be amongst that environment. And thats for a job! Not another human being. Maybe its a generational thing, my mother/aunts/their friends often talk of motherhood and they all loved every minute of it. Yes theres hard times but they accepted that, they didnt whine about it. So my advice to you and young mothers like you, suck it up, it was your decision, stop the complaints and for god sakes yes cherish the moments. Some of us would love to be in your shoes but unfortunately we werent blessed with having that choice.

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    1. Hi Sam,
      I wouldn’t take back having my kids for anything.
      Perhaps you misunderstood my intentions.
      This is a personal blog that was picked up by a paper. I sure don’t profess to speak for everyone, but I think I’m allowed to speak however I please about my own life.
      Sorry to hear of your own situation.
      All the best.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Hi Sam,
      I’m so sorry to hear that you haven’t been able to have children. As a mum I can’t begin to imagine how difficult that is for you. And I certainly understand your outrage when we parents complain about raising kids and the challenges parenthood brings. Having said that, I feel I must also defend the author’s point of view. It’s simply not possible to feel thankful all the time – particularly when someone has just vomited on you or woken you for the thirteenth time in a night. It’s important to be able to vent – not just about big, dreadful things like infertility, but also about small, constant and dreadful things like sleep deprivation and borderline depression. It’s important for parents to feel that they can ‘say it like it is’. Some parents DO love every minute, and that’s great. But for many people (who dearly love and are thankful for their children), parenthood is close to hell. They’re not saying it’s not worse than infertility – it’s completely different. And if it makes them feel better to read that there are others in the same boat, I say bring on more honest and open posts like this.

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    3. Having nieces for some weeks is not the same as having children. it is not the same kind of responsibility. Motherhood is hard and we should be able to complain. Don’t wanna hear them? Don’t read the article!

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  9. Thank you – I wish I had seen this 30 years ago – but there was no internet then. Totally identify with everything you have written. The isolation, feelings of failure, lack of support, and in my situation a lack of money because if I had gone back to work, I would have only earned enough to pay for child care. There does need to be a balance of how parenthood is portrayed and thank you for this honesty. There will always be smug, judgmental, self righteous people like Peter and Meme, but they were the minority.

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  10. I have certainly felt every single emotion you have described. I wanted a baby so badly and we tried for 4 years before getting pregnant.
    The first 6 months of my daughters life I seriously contemplated leaving my family in secret in the middle of the night. The exhaustion and the crying drained every ounce of joy from my soul.
    Thankfully I stayed and she started to sleep and I stopped fantasising about running away. But that doesn’t mean that things are all sunshine over here, the loneliness, the isolation and the tedium of looking after a baby have still left motherhood underwhelming for me.
    The first assumption is always PND. Well, guess what that isn’t always the case, I saw a psych because I figured there must be something wrong with me. There isn’t, I was told by a pro. Everyone approaches motherhood differently and feels differently about it.
    We just need to unite.
    Thanks so much for writing this blog post.

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  11. Love it. I agree. Real-real stuff is always gold. I wrote a piece a couple of years ago titled “my kids bring out the worst in me” because it’s true. Never have I experieced such a wild range of largely conflicting emotions since I became a parent. And yet they have been the making of me. xx

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    1. Hi Kelly!
      Wondered if you might see this article.
      Some people have chosen to see this piece as a really negative view on parenting, but I think that the majority have recognised the true intention, which is transparency.
      We all have dark days and dark moments, and this doesn’t make us bad parents, or make our children any less loved.
      Love your work too. Always great to see your ideas and thoughts.
      One day we will catch up for that wine and cheese date xx

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  12. Loved it. Refreshing to hear we’re not the only ones feeling this way. People tell us kids get easier at 3. Yeah that’s all well and good but that freaken 1.5 years away! A friend announced they were expecting their first child next December. I wanted to shout “you bloody idiot! You’ve ruined your life” but instead i said “congratulations”. Because that’s what’s expected.

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  13. Isn’t it extraordinary that your parenting ability is gauged by how well your children sleep. Having had 2 girls (neither of which slept through the night until they were about 3 and a half) I was totally sleep deprived for about 7 years. My guilt was huge and I thought I was a failure as a parent. Now I realise just how wrong I was. I am a great parent and my children’s sleep patterns had nothing to do with it.

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  14. I thought ‘here we go, another BS article about raising children’ but to my surprise I found everything pretty much on par, I’m impressed and I find little to impress me most times 🙂
    My 4 kids are well advanced from the little stage now and it doesn’t really get a lot better in terms of what happens under our 4 falls, the parenting morphs from you being the actual doer of tasks to being the motivator, the guider and the focus point of their discord! The energy drain increases because you realise the stakes are greater in assisting your children to help them cement a good path in life, one that benefits society, themselves and the planet. As they age, their individualism rises, which is as it’s supposed to be, I for one certainly don’t want copies of myself roaming this planet, but I do want the best aspects of myself, my partner and the best learning’s of history and great individuals to walk and talk in my children and that’s a hell of a lot of hard work. Society with it’s inherent selfishness and desire for quick fixes and ill-gotten profit at all costs mentality is something you struggle against all the time, from inappropriate images beamed to your child’s devices or through whatever media channel it’s pushed from to wrong harmful ideas pushed through friends who’s parents should know better but don’t, make for a murky world that you as a parent are a participant in whether you like it or not to ensure your child learns from every encounter and understands the subtle influences attempting to push their lives in various directions and to learn how to spot the ones that are harmful to them and greater society from the one’s that are not, it’s a huge task but a rewarding one. Add to this mix grandparents, who are great but who are also mind locked at times into what worked in their generation, often from route and do as you told attitudes rather than from real inspiration, so their attempt to impart their ways onto grandchildren often come across as irreverent at times in a world that has changed dramatically. The African saying that “It takes a village to raise a child” is very true, but we have compartmentalized our lives so much that the village is now reduced to our immediate family and so the workload has skyrocketed. The media tells us that there are pedophiles lurking behind every swing when this is just total BS, there are no more of these twisted individuals than there were before. Parents now reject other parents attempts at discipline and the law has not helped here either, pitting person again person to the point where if another parent even attempts to discipline someone else child, threat of lawsuits abound. In my case, if another parent see’s my children doing a wrong I expect to be told about it and they have my permission to enact sensible discipline on them, I want societies participation in the raising of my children, it actually bolsters their understanding that they are part of it and are accountable to it. Parents need to take back parenting, that is the given right to bring their children up as they want and governments need to be pushed back from this task. I review what my children watch on TV, what they are assigned to read in school texts, I do this not as a policeman but as a responsible parent. My kids know that to the extent that I see them directing their lives as responsible society members is the degree to which I hand over the reigns of governance of their lives to live as they want, contrast this with government who would have you ever in it’s debt of reliance, this is why raising children must be taken back from government and from those who would seek to tell us we are not capable to raise children. Articles like what was posted are needed so that people realise what is really involved in raising children and even though it is hard work, it also has rewards beyond your wildest dream and is in fact what a good and strong society is built upon

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  15. First of all, to the writer of this article:
    Thank you for sharing. No, seriously, thank you so much. I honestly thought I was the only one who felt this way. My two year old son is such a handful and sometimes I really struggle to deal with his high-energy, tendency to fling himself from high places when angry, and general refusal to comply to any request. The worst part of parenting is that it is a job. You don’t get paid, you don’t get breaks, and you don’t get to leave and go home to recharge. You are literally with your boss 24/7. And he/she gives no shits about how you are at the end of your rope and fantasizing about pint-sized straight jackets and duct tape. They just know that they want [insert noun or verb of your choice] and mom and/or dad is supposed to make it happen. So it’s really nice to know that at least one person in the world truly gets that motherhood is guerrilla warfare for some of us and that doesn’t mean we are failing. I really needed to know that I wasn’t alone in that.

    Second, to the “perfect moms” who thought parenting was the best thing since the mojito:
    If motherhood is/was easy for you, then please stop looking down on those of us who struggle with it from time to time. We are not all made the same and what is easy for you might not be easy for me (and vice versa). You are not better than me. I work hard to provide a safe, comfortable environment for my child just like you. I keep him feed and clothed just like you. He gets baths and playtime and I teach him what he needs to know just like you taught your children. I still get up in the night with him. I comfort him when he is sick. I am there for him every time he needs me. The only difference between us is that I’m doing all of that with this debilitating depression, isolation, and yes, even anger.

    Finally, to the women who are offended that I complain about my son because they can’t have one:
    I’m sorry for you. I really am. It must be the most difficult thing for you to have to deal with. But don’t think for one second that you can use your bitterness to make me feel bad about being overwhelmed as a mother. You don’t know anything about my situation. Also, there are thousands (if not millions) of children worldwide that don’t have moms and could use someone to love them. Instead of wasting time flaming someone for having what you want why don’t you go adopt one or two or ten of them and see if it doesn’t make you want to lock yourself in a closet with a candy bar and a flask every now and then.

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  16. Teamwalrus, it doesn’t get easier at three. Just different.

    Sam, I think it’s good for anyone in a situation where they feel so bad, to TALK about it. Pretending to be fine, or not talknig about it, is probably the most stupid thing you can do, because that situation then becomes considered to be the norm. A norm of people struggling but not complaining or asking for help is ridiculous.

    Parenting is tough. It isn’t tough because it’s the hardest job out there: it’s tough because it’s so banal, but never goes away, and you have such high emotion invested in it. Most people will sadly only understand this when they become parents, and very, very few people will admit it.

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  17. Teamwalrus, it doesn’t get easier at three. Just different.

    Sam, regarding your jobs: I think it’s good for anyone in a situation where they feel so bad, to TALK about it. Pretending to be fine, or not talknig about it, is probably the most stupid thing you can do, because being in a situation where you only get 3 hrs sleep a night then becomes considered to be the norm. A norm of people struggling in those conditions would be ridiculous.

    It is dangerous is the way the media covers it up, the way parents feel they can’t talk baout the hellish times because they don’t want to upset all the people in the world who couldn’t have kids. Because when you can’t discuss it, it becomes isolating. When you can’t complain to other adults, you are more likely to bottle it up or blurt it out and damage your kids (because after all, they are the main people we parents share out lives with now). So I’m afraid the author has a point. Those of us who do have children need to feel that they can say ‘I feel rubbish at this’ more, and then they’ll realise everyone is thinking it, and it’s ok.

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  18. Two comments. 1- it gets easier as they get older. Truly. So much easier. So so so much easier. I’d never do the toddler baby years over for all the tea in china. 2 – in terms of perfection and striving I find this interesting because mommy blogs just like this one promote the sense that everyone else is doing it perfectly and with joy and no vomit or poo. So in some ways – are you setting yourself up to compare yourself to others – or for others to compare themselves to and feel inadequate also – just by running a blog about parenting? 3 – (ok 3 things) stop qualifying every honest admission with a “I love them really.” We know that. It almost feels like tempting fate to complain about them and not then quickly reassure everyone/onself that you love them. But you don’t need to. Keep up the good work. They adore you regardless, that much I’ve learned in my parenting years to date (all 14 of them) x

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    1. thanks for your input.
      I have some comments too:
      1. Glad to hear that the older your kids got, the easier they were for you to handle. I’m hoping that as I start to get more sleep and am dealing with two children who are able to communicate with words, it will get easier for me too.
      2. I don’t think that by writing a parenting blog that I am comparing myself to anyone else, nor am I asking anyone to compare themselves to me. If people are doing that, that’s their own making. I am certainly not professing to be an authority on anything here!
      3. I appreciate what you are saying regarding the ‘qualifying’ but I didn’t want my piece to be all ‘poor me, what a hard time I’m having with my horrendous children’, because that is not the case, and for those who do not know me personally, they (you) may not actually ‘know’ that at all. I’m aware that one day Rio and Sunday may well read this blog themselves, and I would like to give them the security of knowing that they are truly my world too.
      All the best.

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  19. through all your struggles, just think positively. you’ve had two HEALTHY babies to a SUPPORTING husband. youve got a roof over your head and food to feed all of you. so your children have some strong lungs and personalities. no offense, but all your complaints sound quite bratty and selfish. like you throw tantrums like your children… i can think of so many others whove got it far worse than you! i get that sleep deprivation can make you a bit mental, (i would know, ive got a 1 year old) but i didnt realize it could make you forget that YOU chose to have a baby. nobody forced you. so if you made that decision, i wouldve assumed youd come to accept all the challenges head on! ESPECIALLY after the first one! so grow some balls, suck it up, and just be the strong MUM youre capable of! dont forget the two children watching you.. monkey see monkey do.

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    1. Thanks for your awesomely judgemental comments and assumptions about my life. Very constructive.
      You’re right, I should never allow myself to see anything but the beauty in life. How lucky I am that you pointed this out.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I was the first of my friends and family to have kids at 25 and It was the hardest thing to do alone. No one understood and EVERYONE had advice on how to do EVERYTHING.
    I openly told people that’s parenting sucked!! I honestly said for the first year of my sons life I didn’t like him. I loved him unconditionally but I didn’t like him (never slept) Everyone thought I was just being a bitch, but I wasn’t I was being honest and years later when my sister or my besties finally had kids they would ring me in tears. My child doesn’t ……… Sleep, eat, poo, drink, play. I hated feeling like i didn’t love my children for openly saying they were the sporran of the devil.

    My kids are now 6 and 4 and I’m faced with new challenges. And it never stops how hard it really is to bring up little humans who have personalities, who are like sponges in the big world they like in. I love this article because you’re right facebook, celebrities, the bloody internet tells parents the good, great wonderful things about being a parent. It doesn’t tell the shit, the hopelessness one feels, the fights you have about parenting with your husband. Thank you for being honest. More people should be like you.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Right. After some awful judgemental comments here, it’s time to tell you that I shared this very tentatively on a FB Mamas Group I’m a a part of here in Switzerland, and it has been met with an absolute BARRAGE of mums saying something along the lines of, ‘FINALLY someone is telling it how it is!’ The wall came down, and instead of the mums sharing stories of potty success, fussy food success, sibling rivalry success, summer holiday success, etc, everyone is having a bloody good whinge, pouring another glass of wine, and finding true solidarity. It’s been awesome, particularly when the expat mama life (that yes, I chose), complete with foreign language and culture learning, can really foster a life of isolation. So thanks for helping me/us to build our community on a more real foundation! ‘Bratty’ my arse. You’re friggin awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I feel this way many days with my 2 year old boy. I get so frustrated with his constant screaming because he refuses (doctors have told us there is no reason he can’t) to talk and it is hard trying to figure out what he wants. We don’t ever go out to eat anymore cause he screams the whole time. Last time we did I left crying too cause we couldn’t even enjoy one meal outside the home. My 4 year old girl suffers because it is so stressful to take Lil man anywhere that we very seldom go anywhere. Lil miss is an angel but lil man…ugh. I totally appreciate this read! Lil man is a terror that I am blessed to have because be was born 16 weeks early (was given less than a 50% chance of surviving) and then we almost lost him when he was 5 months old to a still unknown illness.

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  23. I have 2 under 2 (both sick and not napping right now) and if I was imagining harm coming to my children, having feelings of intense rage, having feelings that I hate my children or throwing around the idea of divorce when fighting with my husband, I would be talking to my doctor and finding a therapist and a parenting course to help me cope. Further, I don’t think the practice of sharing feelings like this to the world at large, complete with pictures of your children (including pictures of your child in a vulnerable state) is what is good about social media. If my mom had shared with the world that she had feelings of hatred toward me, and accompanied that with a picture she took of me crying, I don’t think that I would be okay with that when I was old enough to understand what that meant.

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    1. Sometimes I imagine crashing my car into another one, or saying really mean things to people who are assholes, but I don’t actually do those things.
      That is the beauty of imagination. Doesn’t make me in need of therapy.
      In fact I would call that healthy.
      As for a photo of my son at 2 years old after having screamed for close to an hour, I think he’ll be okay with this as he gets older.
      If this is his biggest complaint in life, I’m doing a great job!
      I attempt to practice peaceful parenting and my kids know they are loved above anything else.
      They’ll be alright. Thanks for your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I try not to be judgemental but it bothers me when others are. I’m glad you aren’t having any feelings of rage but I do have a question . . . how is it that you have 2 sick children who aren’t napping and you are reading blogs and posting comments on the computer? I mean, who is taking care of the sick children?

      Liked by 1 person

  24. I read this post a few days ago, I keep coming back to it to read the ‘comments’ to one women’s story of how life as a ‘new’ mum has been for her.

    Thankfully most have supported her, even applauded her for her outspoken words regarding motherhood. Myself included. And wonderful to see the fathers making comments on here too and taking the time to read her article. My husband laughed as he read it, not because he thought it was ridiculous but refreshingly real.

    Unfortunately with social media though there is always someone there, waiting, to knock you back. I believe the author fully knew this and is strong enough to accept both praise and critism.

    I am so disappointed to see the negative backlash she is receiving though, forever as women we have been fighting for freedom of speech and yet when it comes to speaking out about how one is feeling were simply meant to ‘shut up’, ‘grow up’, ‘ suck it up’ ?? No wonder there are so many women with PND, would you seriously consider saying this to a mum who is suffering from this too?
    I would never say those things to someone who was unable to have children either, you would receive only love and support, understanding and respect.

    Surely as women we should be doing the same for those who are struggling (myself at times included) with being a parent, it’s not hard to say ‘I am sorry to hear your having a rough time is there anything I can do to help?…ie listen, talk, go for a walk, whatever it takes to make the situation ‘lighter’ would certainly help would it not?

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  25. A friend of mine sent me this link jokingly asking if I was moonlighting as a blogger under a different name because this is so similar to the venting I do in her general direction. Thank you for this!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Best read ever!!! I guess I’m not crazy after all. So refreshing to see and read about the ugly side of parenting because thats me 80% of the time.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. I for one applaud you. My mother once said to me “I will always love you, but I don’t always have to like you.” Back then I didn’t get it & thought how rude. Today I get it! I have 2 sets of twins that are only 17 months apart. They are now 3 & 2yrs old. I have days where I want to run. I want to run so far away & never look back. Then I hear “I love you mommy” & i put on my big girl undies & get back to “work.” My 4 are soooo well behaved-in public. I make it look like sunshine & roses, but its a lot of damn work. I count down the hrs to naps/bedtime, i argue with my 3 yr olds, rarely do I win, but I go on loving them. I never expected parenthood to be easy peasy, but come on…..go to sleep, let me eat, clean up after yourself & maybe I will like you for today…but I will always love you on the days I dont!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YES! They are always so perfect in public aren’t they! I mean, I’m glad my kids are great in public (as I’m sure you are too), but it does make us look like liars right?!
      You are incredible to be sane at all with 4 babies at 2 and 3 years old! Honestly, hats off to you.
      xx

      Like

  28. i’ve always been upfront and honest about parenting and i agree – most of the time it sucks. never have i been tested like this – EVER. not even the most gruelling school years, work, working with moronic humans or anything in life has tested my patience like having/raising children.

    i’m sure there are those parents out there who are all rainbows and sunshine when it comes to their kids but come on now, let’s be honest with ourselves – what truly sane person is all lovey dovey with a little human at 3am when their child just refuses to sleep and would prefer to scream instead? NO ONE, that’s who. i don’t know why people are afraid to admit that yes, sometimes you do want to pack your bags and GTFO; that yes, sometimes you do think “wtf have we done”; that yes, sometimes you just wish for another life. does that make you a bad parent? no! it makes you human. that doesn’t mean we love our children less or hate our decisions – it just means that we’re fucking tired and sick of the whining and why oh why, do kids have to repeat things a billion times or never listen when we ask them to do something yet they are quick to hear the goddamn ice cream truck that’s 8 blocks away?!

    so i applaud this honest post about what parenting is really like. my sister had warned me that parenting is one tough journey and i’m glad she didn’t sugar coat anything because at least i was somewhat mentally prepared.

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  29. Yup, I remember. Every single bit of it. Now my little angels ( well not really ) are young adults 18 & 20 and a new stage of sleepless nights, stress and frustration is upon me. Just wait, it gets better….lol.

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  30. All I have to say is, I found parenting much easier when I went back to work. Loved being with them when it wasn’t all day every day. Being at home reading mum blogs drove me insane.

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  31. I can relate to every minute of this. I think about my life and how different it is now.. I don’t get JACK.. and my kids and hubby seem to get it all. HA! Maybe my hubby would say that’s not the case… but that’s the way it feels. But I’ve learned that it’s not all about me or any bit about me anymore… I have two little souls to make happy and ensure they flourish and develop and who I love dearly and have made my life more purposeful and enriching for sure. But those thoughts go out the window on days where pandemonium is ensuing with my two “cherubs”. I think I yell and act like a crazed madwoman more than I’d like to admit. When I had no kids I was the most calm, level headed, patient person.. now? Ya.. so not in the same headspace I used to be…. and I agree it is VERY different with one compared to two. You still have time to yourselves, but with two… your world is turned upside down and you are eternally exhausted. Anyways, I commend you and thank you for your article as I was feeling the same way as you…. thinking I was the only one that is feeling like a horrible parent for privately wanting to take off to a desert island and leave it all behind… but then of course I snap out of it, suck it up and continue on. 🙂

    Like

  32. Reading this makes me want to rejoin FB just to friend you! I got off social media because its nothing but a highlight reel of people’s lives, to which we either consciously, or unconsciously compare our own, and usually end up feeling like we are coming up short. Sometimes we forget that the behind the scenes, bloopers, disappointments, and utter embarassements, of real life are all lying on the cutting room floor, sight unseen. I thought I was going crazy for feeling this way at times. Especially being a single parent. Thank you for being transparent and courageously speaking your mind! I have days when I feel like exhaustion, resentment, and despair are the only emotions I have left after giving my all to ensure my son’s welfare, safety and well being. For me, I have found that motherhood is a painfully effective cure for selfishness and self centeredness that comes from years of singlehood, however, it has gotten to the point where self neglection has become the norm. I’m sure that’s true for most parents. Ultimately, you are right, I wouldn’t trade him for the world! 🙂

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  33. Thank you so much for this article. I can relate to every single point you made and have felt the same way — often! Those feelings always made me feel guilty and like I wasn’t meant to be a mom. I am going to bookmark this in case I ever decide to have another child!!

    Like

  34. I stumbled upon this article today while searching for help with “having two kids sucks”. After my baby was born a month ago my whole life changed from full of love to pure chaos. So thank you for writing this. Nobody talks about the negatives like this and it makes you feel like something is wrong with you when in reality it’s just hard and it does suck. It’s hard and this is normal and we can all get through it together. Thank you again for sharing this.

    Like

  35. Just googled ‘having children sucks the life out of you’ and this came up. I feel squillions and millions better after reading. Thank you! Also double whammy bonus points for recognising challenges of having a child with additional special needs as that acknowledgement made me feel entirely human again and ready to go back to battle. You are a parenting role model super hero.

    Liked by 1 person

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