When will I feel less overwhelmed with having a baby?

posted 2 months ago in Babies
Post # 31
342 posts
Helper bee

I just wanted to add one more thought. In the first few months, slash realistically most of year 1 of your first baby’s life, not sure if it’s due to hormones or what, but everything just feels SO FROUGHT. Like if you do one thing wrong your kid is going to be fucked up for life. If you give them formula rather than breastmilk, they’re going to have life-long health problems. If you spoon feed them a puree rather than do baby-led weaning that’s it, they’ll never be a good eater. If you put them in the swing to sleep, their head will turn flat and they will never be able to sleep in the crib. If you don’t stimulate them all day their brain will turn to mush and they’ll be dumb. 

I’m just here to say none of these things are true, and if they were, the human race would have died out a long time ago. You got this mama! 

Post # 33
880 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2019 - Turkey

I’m not a mother I just came here to read comments about how life my look like when we have a baby in the future. 

I send you a bit heart ♥ to all of you moms. 

Post # 34
3721 posts
Sugar bee

So I think one of the main reasons the first is so much harder than the second child, is because the parents relax more with the second child. You may think you’re relaxed, lord knows I thought I was, but you’re not. Can’t be in the swing more than 15 min? Constantly worried she’s bored or needs something from you? Trust me, she can be put down (but in your view) more than that! I think one of the reasons kids get easier the older they get is because we do let go a little more. It happens gradually, and certainly as they grow and are more self-reliant, but it does happen. My best advice is to try to do whatever you can think of to give yourself more time. Wear her while cleaning up, bring her swing in the bathroom so you can shower, watch a tv show while she’s eating, and work on her napping independently from you so you can have a better break. It sounds like the nap part is your biggest issue. Is she really only napping if you hold her? My son was like that for quite a while, but I would always at least try to get him to nap on his own before giving in…even if that meant in the swing which was perfectly fine supervised. There are lots of resources and methods for making those naps better, and I think that trying out some different ideas might give you some precious personal time back! 

I swear it gets easier, and you are doing awesome. 

Post # 35
2357 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

pockster :  for us, it got better at about 3 months old (hopefully you’re feeling that way a bit?), and then better again at 5-6 months old when he started sleeping pretty well and being more predictable. Then it gets better AGAIN at like 8 months old when they get super interactive and fun! My son is 11.5 months old now and honestly, it’s pretty easy.  He doesn’t cry randomly all the time, he’s fairly content playing by himself when we need him to, and he sleeps through the night about 95% of the time. 

Hang in there!!  Do you have new-mom friends that you can go on walks with, or get together for a cup of coffee/tea/wine?  That really helped me.  Check out library baby events or similar community events and be shameless about asking other moms if they wanna hang out sometime!  I made a bunch of friends that way 🙂  Everyone is looking for more connections during such a tumultous time.

(of course now we are having another baby so it’s time to throw everything back into Crazy-ville…)

Post # 36
1044 posts
Bumble bee

I’m new at this too, my baby is 5 months now. I’m assuming you dont work right now?

Sleep during babies longest stretch of sleep. We were putting LO down at 9 and I would to to sleep too so I could get that 4-5 hour stretch of sleep. 

When LO was 3 months, I would let him sleep his first nap of the day on me where I would enjoy my morning coffee and watch TV or play a video game. It was my favourite part of the day. Me time with baby snuggles. Now he sleeps in the crib for naps but I still enjoy that first nap as time to myself. (Even if it’s only 30 min)

LO has only been sleeping 30 min naps which is tough. But I try to balance it with “me” time for 30 min or cleaning time for 30 min. 

It’s tough sometimes. Some days I’m so mentally exhausted. I get it. Just try to take some time for yourself.

Post # 37
145 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

Honestly it never gets easier it just changes. I think when they become mobile it’s worse bc u can’t leave them anywhere unattended. My second is 9 months old and I just went back to work and pumping is HARD and I really miss him. I found breastfeeding easier and faster than pumping but weanibg tKes time. Our first was a good sleeper and 2nd is up every 3 hours at night so trying to function at a new job is mentally hard. Plus with 2 under 3 you can’t have husband help because we each have a kid to watch. Just the truth if you want more than one close in age. It’s exhausting and we have grandparent help with the toddler on weekends! 

Post # 38
121 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

My best advice would be to make sure you leave the house at least once a day. Plus this no showering or even five minutes to yourself thing is BS – you need to fix that or you’ll go insane. It’s just so unnecessary. Even if you put bub on a blanket in the bathroom with you just do it – they’ll be absolutely fine. Mine’s never been a great sleeper, he goes for stretches of about 4-5 hours now first thing but after that he wakes up constantly (he’s 15 moths now). Don’t get too attached to the idea of ‘sleeping through’ as not all do. We started co-sleeping after his first early night stretch at about 5 months in and it was a lifesaver – I was finally getting large stretches of sleep and it changed my world. I was (still am) breastfeeding though so didn’t need to get up and do any messing about with bottles/formula etc. 

The other thing that changed my whole world was going to the gym every day and putting bub in their creche. If this is something that is available and affordable for you to do I would totally recommend it. You can hand over bub to some lovely care givers for an hour or two, go do a work out (or sit in the cafe as I do sometimes) and just de-stress. Think about nothing baby related for a little while, get the adrenalin pumping and give yourself a break. It has truly changed my whole outlook. It sounds as though you’re suffering with a bit of anxiety so some exercise and and a short time away from baby would do you a world of good. Goood luck! I promise you it gets easier (a little bit anyway), the first four months are definitely the hardest. 

Post # 39
224 posts
Helper bee

whitums :  You literally took the words out of my mouth! 

Hang in there OP you’re doing great and it will get better in this aspect. 

Post # 40
1158 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

We worked with a sleep consultant at around 3.5-4 months to help get LO on a better sleep routine. She would only nap being held or in her rock n play (before they were recalled) and night time sleep was a DISASTER. I had already gone back to work part time at 8 weeks pp and the other days my husband has ricidulous hours so I basically do all the housework/childcare/everything and I was at my wits end. I, like you, felt I could get nothing done because she always wanted to be held and napped so poorly. 

We got LO on a schedule, she took consistent naps 3x a day at that age and finally started sleeping at night instead of just screaming for hours on end. I could use those nap times to shower, pick up the house, prep some food, take a nap myself or just zone out on my couch. Night time was such a relief because once I finally knew she’d go down without a fight, I had my evenings back. She was much happier too because she was finally getting good quality sleep many hours a day. 

At the very least, you can secure your Dear Daughter in some type of safe baby device (a bouncer, swing, mamaroo whatever) and bring it in the bathroom while you shower. I have never once missed a shower since the day she was born because I simply need them to feel human. I can 100% see how some moms just can’t get it done but it’s one thing I MAKE a priority – so baby would come in the bathroom with me, or I’d bring the monitor to set on the sink while she’s in the crib during nap time. 

Take advantage of a crockpot to help make dinners easier (plus fall is prime crock pot season!) or when your husband is home, get him on board to help you prep a few meals to stockpile in the freezer. 

Post # 41
487 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: City, State

It’s hard to answer exactly when, as I’ve found it happened gradually. My son is 10.5 months now and things like a routine, increased mobility and longer naps have all definitely helped. I wouldn’t latch on to any one of those things as being the one thing to lift the fog though. They all help you feel more and more like yourself again. Also my son only sleeps through the night about 50% of the time, despite sleep training, so don’t get too hung up on 6 months = sleeping through! Hang in there, it does get easier.

Post # 42
413 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I honestly have way less anxiety about our second baby coming now that I know it’s normal to feel like you’re floating through a fog for the first six months. My son will be two next month and I’d say I started being able to cope a little better around six months, and then I started feeling like a human being again when he slept through the night at 13 months. He was sleep trained at five months but he still struggled occasionally with naps and woke up at least once to eat until he was weaned at a year. A routine is a lifesaver, at least it was for us since we figured out that our son thrives on a fairly strict schedule.

I still showered every day even when he was small because I would feel even more foggy and in the dumps if I didn’t…I just put him in a bouncy chair or on a blanket in the bathroom and put music on, and he was usually fine long enough for me to freshen up a bit. I plan to do the same with our daughter too. We also started encouraging short periods of “independent” play very early, mainly by putting him on his activity mat with toys and letting him squirm around and figure out his body without our interference for a few minutes at a time. He can now play happily on his own for 30min-1hr without asking for anything from me, and I can get so much more done!

Post # 43
4426 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

pockster :  Those first 4 or so months were tough. I went back to work at 6 weeks (ugh), but Darling Husband stayed home while finishing his degree (actually finished in the spring and job hunting now). Staying at home with a kid is a tireless, thankless, exhausting job. From my perspective, things began improving emotionally and mentally closer to 5-6 months when more of an emotional response can be seen. It’s hard when they’re so little because you don’t get a lot back for all you’re putting in. Darling Husband loved when our son could communicate more (1 year+). He’s 3 now, 4 in December, and besides the terrible 3s, there’s so much communication-sassy communication-it makes things so much easier. 

Follow PPs advice-put baby down for a nap/rest at the same time(s) each day. Make sure to follow a quick routine to establish it’s rest time (quick book, a song, then down). Then, go do something you want. Read, watch a show, sit in utter, precious silence, whatever. Don’t clean. Don’t shower. (Unless you really want to.) Baby can hang out somewhere safe while you shower. Once closer to 6 months, the jumpers are amazing. Before then, we’d strap him in the seat that could be detached from his swing, give him a sensory ball, and shower or make dinner or just relax a bit while he explored. You’re doing great even if it doesn’t feel like it. 

Post # 44
1802 posts
Buzzing bee

Hang in there mama, we all go through this. I was you 11 months ago and here I am pregnant with my second. My daughter sounds just like yours except she had colic. What swing do you have? It took some time to find out our swing actually moved in both directions (back n forth & side to side). She was good with the side to side. I did tummy time outside since it was new things to see. I think being cooped in our home made both of us crazy. For me, I didn’t start feeling myself until I got back to work and she went to daycare. I’m still not my old self but I’m so much better than I was a few months ago. Having a child is so hard! Especially when Darling Husband doesn’t help out as much. It feels like forever but it’ll get better. pockster :  

Post # 45
35 posts

Everything you’re feeling is totally normal!  My daughter is 14 now, but I still remember the infant and toddler years like they were yesterday – she was a decent napper, but a TERRIBLE nighttime sleeper!  In any given day I went from being the best mom ever to sobbing on my knees next to her crib begging her to sleep.  It does get better and easier over time, and you are not alone! 

I did return to part time work after 3 months of leave and was lucky to have my mom there to care for her when I was working, and I found that returning to work those 3 days a week really was such a wonderful balance – by the 3rd day working I was missing her terribly, and by the 4th day of being home with her, I was dying to get back to the office lol!

I would say that you definitely need to find time, even if it’s just moments, to care for yourself.  There’s nothing wrong with popping her into the swing or bouncy seat for 30 minutes so that you can take a nice long shower, for example (bring her into the bathroom with you so that she can see you and you know she’s ok because you’re able to see her too!)  I also found that following a really good schedule kept us all saner – outings were scheduled around her naps and meal times to keep her in the best possible mood when we did go out – and I liked that structure and routine for myself too.

When the time came that I couldn’t handle the sleep deprivation anymore, we did do the cry it out sleep training and it worked like a dream.  Through age 6+, she still was a kid who routinely woke up during the night calling for me (night terrors and such), but my life improved dramatically once we got her simply falling asleep easily and on time without the big ordeal it used to be.

In a few more months she’ll be ready for the exercauser (best thing EVER) and more engaged in toys and able to spend longer periods of time in the playpen, etc.  Another thing I used to do, when she was a little bit older than yours is now, was baby proof her room, put a baby gate on the door and locked us both in for some free play time…then I’d lie among her stuffies and take little power naps while she rolled around on the floor and played.  We do what we must to survive the early years lol!

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