losing myself in becoming a new parent…

posted 6 months ago in Parenting
Post # 2
361 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

Kslim13 :  oh gosh, I’m sorry you are going through this. Take what I say with a grain of salt because I do not have children but this is NOT normal. You both made this baby and you should both have the responsibility of taking care of him/her. If you have yet to do so, sit your husband down and discuss what you’ve written here. Does your husband like hiking? You guys can definitely still do these things with the baby, I have plenty of friends who start the baby in and head out for a hike. How old is your baby?

Post # 3
573 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

I’m so sorry you are going through this. While I haven’t been through this situation, the way you describe your husband’s actions is somewhat concerning. He goes out weekly, while you can only go to the store alone? Also, he doesn’t seem to want to “watch” the baby for a long time? Maybe this warrants conversation with your husband. Now, I don’t know your marriage, but if he hears how you feel, maybe he can take a look at his actions (or lack of there of). 

Since I’m not a new mom, I can’t say what is “normal”. 

Post # 4
871 posts
Busy bee

Being overwhelmed as a new parent is normal, it’s generally a gradual process getting back to a balance where you’re a great mom but make time for yourself as well. 

The issue here is your husband, he seems to be making demands on you but doing little to help you. You’re a mom but he’s a dad! You should be overwhelmed and finding your new balance together. Why is he going out on his own twice a week yet complaining if you’re gone too long when you’re out on a wild and crazy adventure at the grocery store buying food for your family? 

For you to achieve a balance in not losing yourself, your husband needs to be more supportive. A serious sit down discussion would be a great start. Tell him how you’re feeling. Instead of him going out two nights a week on his own, could he go out one night a week on his own and the second night the two of you arrange for childcare and have a date night? Even just a few hours and an inexpensive plan. Or could the two of you go do something fun on the weekend you could take the baby along with you- a picnic or trip to the zoo for example. 

He needs to be a full-on partner in all of this, not acting like he’s doing you a favour when he looks after his own child for a few hours. It seems like your life has changed a whole lot since  having a baby and his has changed very little. And he’s pouting he wants more attention while letting you do most of the work. Dude needs a Come To Jesus talk. 

Post # 5
1671 posts
Bumble bee

Kslim13 :  how old is babe? As they get older and more independent it gets better. That being said, your husband needs to do more and not complain. Also, maybe plan a night out for yourself once a week with friends or family. As far as hikes, get yourself a good baby carrier and hit the trails.

Post # 7
712 posts
Busy bee

A new baby is hard!! And it’s hard on a marriage too, because it requires a lot of adjusting. It’s not going to be a smooth transition, your husband/partner won’t always automatically split the work. It could take some long, hard talks. And a lot of scheduling to make sure you are both pulling your weight as parents. 

As a breastfeeding mom, I am constantly made aware of how ‘unequal’ this early phase of parenting seems. My husband offers to help, but I do the lion’s share of baby related work since so much of it just involves sticking my boob in her hungry little mouth multiple times a night. He handles all the home cleaning, laundry, washing my pump stuff, etc.  If you’re not breastfeeding, this makes it a bit easier for an equitable split to be made. He’s a parent just like you are and his ‘me time’ isn’t any more special than yours. Talk to him about that. You will both end up with far less time for yourselves than you did pre baby, but it gets easier with time.

And you can totally hike with the baby. I’ve done this many times both on trails near home and in Yosemite. I believe our babies are about the same age? I use a Bjorn, works great!

Hang in there mama! 

Post # 8
1724 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

You have a husband problem and not a new mom problem. Your husband is being a child and needs to grow up and step up. You should be able to go out without the baby for however long you want and your husband should be perfectly fine managing his own child. I would have a serious talk with your H and get this situation figured out because I think you’re not losing yourself because of your baby but more so because you have to take care of essentially 2 children right now. 

Post # 9
129 posts
Blushing bee

I’m a first time mom to a 3 month old. At first I felt like I had lost my whole identify. In the beginning my husband wasn’t helping me out much. He was waiting for me to ask and I was expecting him to look around and help out, as I was obviously struggling. 

Once he started helping more with the baby and got more confident in watching him I was able to go out and feel more like me. I definitely think you have a husband problem. If you have already expressed that you need him to help you out and he isn’t then that’s an issue.

Post # 10
6231 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2016

The issue, OP, is that your husband is being a tit for tat piece of shit. Sorry not sorry. If you two were working together, things wouldn’t be feeling so hard.

There are many ways to do this arrangement- some couples tag team so they strive for somewhat equal time and service to the baby (she nurses, he changes diapers. She’s home all day, he takes the night shift). Some couples do a more “traditional” arrangement where she does the bulk of caring for the baby so he does the bulk of everything else INCLUDING caring for her. Whatever arrangement, the two of you need to be working together.

This thing where your immature shit of a husband thinks he is “owed” some kick it time after YOU grew and birthed a whole ass human from your body would piss me right the fuck off and I probably already would have ripped his head off and devoured it like a female praying mantis.

Hopefully, this is just a step learning curve for him and not a sign of further issues to come.

Post # 11
479 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

First of all, yes the adjustment is hard. And yes you feel like you will never get time alone again. If you are only 3 months in, that’s still super early and you will continue to adjust, and certain things will get easier. 

Since it sounds like you are both at work, baby stuff should fully be split when you are home (I know some stay at home moms feel like the baby is their ‘job’ 24/7 and they shouldn’t take time off, but that just makes you crazy). You definitely need to have a talk with your husband about division of child work, and legitimate time off equal to his (grocery shopping for your family doesn’t count unless you love it. Watching tv alone, going out with friends, or just to some ridiculous place to window shop if that’s your thing). I think it’s hard sometimes for dads to get how trapped we feel by having to be the one who has all the answers (and all the food/soothing ability if you breastfeed) when we are trying to recover and figure it all out. I was home for 9 months (Canada), and while my husband was great about letting me take off at night and get alone time, now that he has taken the last 3 months of our year leave himself, he has said multiple times how he didn’t fully get before how exhausting it is to be ‘on’ all the time even if you are just at home. And he acknowledges he has by far the easier part of the year haha. 

Having gone back to work myself now, I get how you can come home tired and not want to have to take care of a baby, but that needs to be a shared responsibility. Maybe you alternate nights ‘off’, of you feed the baby and then take 2-3 hours ‘off’ before bedtime a few days a week. Or get to go out after the baby goes to bed. As an introvert, I really struggled with NEVER having alone time. To me, watching a baby monitor doesn’t provide that time. Even if you need to draft a schedule for now to get through the next few months, you need to work on dividing free time more so that you can reset and get some alone time (or fun time with friends, or whatever you need to recharge)

Post # 12
9223 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

My son is nearly 15 months old and I have a husband who does the lion’s share of anything baby-related (other than breastfeeding) and it’s STILL hard. So while I agree with PPs that a big part of why you’re feeling this way is because your husband should help out more, even if/when he does, that’s no magic solution to suddenly getting your full, pre-baby-self back. Having a baby is a huge adjustment, and yours is only 3 months old! You’re just now hitting the end of the fourth trimester. At the 3 month mark, I was still barely sleeping and googling “when do babies get easier” every couple of days lol. As the months go by, you’ll rediscover yourself more and more and regain a life that’s not completely centered around baby, it just takes time. And hopefully your husband can speed that along by helping more and letting you have your “me time” when you need it.

Post # 13
368 posts
Helper bee

I recommend talking to your OB about PPD to rule it out. I have gone through this. Parenting is hard and (for me) it was hard for awhile. My husband helps a lot. Family vacations helped us. It gets much easier as they become more independent but it takes what feels like forever. This stage will go quickly. Enjoy the baby cuddles while they last.

Post # 14
47 posts

Hey mama. I really think your story is common among new mothers and my gut instinct says it will get better and easier. You and your hubby are both adjusting to this totally different life and people respond to change differently. Stay open in your communication, be patient, but most of all be kind to yourself right now. Reach out for help from your circle of support all the time. You are doing great! 

Post # 15
712 posts
Busy bee

So in the spirit of keeping it real, working out an equitable split of time wasn’t easy for us. It took some fights and disagreements. He wanted me to ASK explicitly when I needed help. That pissed me off no end. Finally, we are starting to work more cohesively. This comes naturally to some folks but it didn’t come naturally to us. This is our second child, I’ll add. 

BUT, my husband didn’t make any demands on my time. Our sex life is non existent for now and that’s okay. Frustrating, for sure, but can’t be helped. I was never this situation where I felt guilty about not giving him any attention. He’s an adult FFS.  

I wouldn’t feel at all amorously inclined to my partner if he wasn’t pulling his weight with the baby and if I didn’t have my needs satisfied. You need to explain that to him in crystal clear terms. 

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