December 30, 2009,
K.L. asks from Potomac, MD on December 28, 2009
Feeling Sad / Slightly Depressed After Birth of 2Nd Child
I had my second child 4 weeks ago. I already have a 23 month old. I'm feeling really sad (don't have post partum) these days and want to know other Moms' experiences. I am also feeling like my husband and I are not connecting at all and don't know if it is just part of the package or if others have felt the same way...
1 mom found this helpful
M.G. answers from Washington DC on December 30, 2009
I didn't get help until my daughter was more than 2 yrs old. I didn't have post partum depression either but I was depressed, anxious and even went through counseling with my husband because we were just growing apart. I told my OBGYN about this and she referred me to a psychiatrist. Best thing I ever did for myself and my family. I recommend at least getting a consultation.
M.C. answers from Washington DC on December 28, 2009
Congrats on your baby. What your feeling is normal. Trying to add a new set of daily chores to your life is never easy. Even the part about you and hubby not being on the same page. My husbands attitude was 'if you're home all day why is the house a mess. you should've been cleaning during nap time' or 'i can't be the one to get up in the night, i have a job to go to you're the one on maternity leave'... it was alway a no win situation.
Some tips to help.
- keep taking your vitamins. They will help give you needed nutrients for healing and energy.
- take a shower daily, whether its at 2 am or 8pm. I have taken many middle of the night showers. I would even set my alarm for 30m before hubby's so that I could get a quick shower in before he left for the day.
- get dressed into clean clothes everyday. Once you feel presentable, you have options... going to the store, shopping, just staying home and having a friend over.
- pick your battles. if there is a time when baby is sleeping but the toddler is a wake, use that for one on one time with the toddler or light housework. if the baby and the toddler are sleeping, use that for grabbing a shower or a nap yourself. Do not feel selfish for putting the basics before the housework or hubby.
- know that you are not alone, and you are not the first to feel overwhelmed. Set a time for hubby to be in charge. They are his kids too, and he should help you have an hour of down time while he bonds with his kids.
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J.T. answers from Washington DC on December 29, 2009
From my experience, the birth of a second child, can have you feeling overwhelmed, and tired. When your body gets so tired, the sad feelings can feel magnified. My kids are 7 yrs apart, and after my 2nd child was born, I was so exhausted and delirious for about 3 months. I had to call in help from neighbors and family so that I could get things done, and get some naps in. I was breastfeeding exclusively, which is particularly hard. My hats off to you, with a 23 month old, and a new born, you really do have your hands full. I think my best advice is to recruit as much help as possible, set a schedule, and also to try and find time for just you. I know its really hard to just have some mommy alone time, but that really helps, and might help you to feel better. The feeling of being overwhelmed can really trigger sad feelings, I felt especially inadequate after my 2nd son was born, I thought to myself that I used to be supermom, I can do everything by myself, and had everything under control. Its really really hard to ask for help when you have that idea in your head, but for me, it was either ask for help, or lose my mind.
As far as your husband is concerned, after the 2nd baby is born, finding time for just the two of you becomes almost non-existant. One of the kids needs you or both of you around the clock, and sleeping schedules are crazy, so alone time just doesn't fit. However, if you are able to schedule a date night either once a week or once every two weeks, even if its just for an hour or two, this will help a lot. My husband felt very much left out after my 2nd son was born. Having a standing date night really helped.
Once you get into your groove, and when the kids get a little older, it does get easier, and not so hectic.
Best of luck, and this is a great community of mommies that are here to help!
1 mom found this helpful
J.C. answers from Lynchburg on December 29, 2009
That's how I was and it continually got worse, or maybe I just stayed in the same rut emotionally for awhile. Anyways, I got my thyroid checked and was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. I was also diagnosed with a vitamin D deficiency. Now I take two little pills a day and my world is completely different! It was like I was disconnected and living in a fog, and now I have bad days when I'm sick or have a cold that aren't great, but other than that every day is MUCH MUCH better than it was before. Both tests require bloodwork, but you can start buying vitamin D pills at many places that aren't prescription strength. Also, check your diet. There are foods that help your thyroid, even if you don't have a thyroid problem that will also really affect your approach to the day. I remember just feeling so disconnected all the time. There are a lot of things I've done, steps I've taken and things I've changed about my life as far as what I eat, why I eat, how I spend my time, etc that have made a big difference. Please feel free to email me (____@____.com) if you'd like to know more about what I did or if you just want to talk to someone who has been there.
K.F. answers from Washington DC on December 29, 2009
Depression is really normal.....try talking to your OB/GYN about it. Also - counseling could help as well.
I wanted to touch on the marriage part though. I am about your same age and have two step children with my first biological child on the way....it is VERY hard to connect with husband with kids taking all the attention (not to mention your sadness). There are several reasons why this happens - lack of time, money, parenting issues dividing you, jealousy, etc...I had to deal with a no 'honeymoon stage' marriage because I walked into a ready-made family...so we had a lot of issues in the beginning. It was not what I had expected...but for you, it must be even more of a challenge since you DID have time alone with your husband and now you are stepping into a family with 2 children, different roles, and you must notice the difference even more. You really have to make an effort and 'schedule' time together...it will feel like you two are growing apart...having kids is very stressful!! It can drive a wedge into any marriage....but the strong will survive, with a little patience and creativity. Just know you are not alone and especially after the kids grow a bit more and require less time, it will be easier to get into a routine and grow into a stable, mature relationship with dear hubby. :) It may not be the same as before, but you two are parents now and experiencing that together can be very exciting in and of itself. Just try to enjoy the kids while they are young - time goes by quickly...and get a babysitter for an evening alone with DH. Hang in there and keep in touch if you need to talk!
I.C. answers from Washington DC on December 29, 2009
Hang in there!!! It is so early after the birth, it takes time to feel balanced again. I am also recovering from the birth, my second is 3 months now (my first is 2 years older), and I have to say that it took me about 2/3rd of that to feel more balanced emotionally. It has been also difficult for me and my husband to reconnect - we are still working at it. But there is so much to adjust, and with a 23 month old in tow, it is normal that it takes longer this time, you are not having a minute for yourself!!! If you can affort it, get some help or send your first to daycare or kindergarten, even if it is only half the day. He will be more
Hang in there girl, things will get better.
C.M. answers from Washington DC on December 29, 2009
Hi K.L. We're due with our second child in the spring, and I'm anticipating the blues. The mix of feeling out of shape with a postpartum body, having less sleep and more work with two, and feeling down if you've decided that this is your last baby may all add to it. If it has only been a month since giving birth, your body may still be recovering, so any physical issues can definitely affect your mood. Your husband is also still adjusting to the lack of sleep, getting back to work, etc. There's also the post holiday blues some of us feel that might be part of it right now. So my advice is that it should get better with time. If you have family or a reliable sitter, see if you can use them and get out for a break every once in a while. Nap whenever the kids will let you. Look into meditation, a spiritual podcast, yoga classes or anything else that might help you rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit. Take care.
K.H. answers from Richmond on December 29, 2009
ah, post partums... if giving birth in the bathroom doesnt
drive you to distraction dealing with the hormone hell
afterward could.. now, what kind of herbals are you taking
because that could be affecting your mood,and yes i gave birth to my baby in the bathroom. look up the potential
side effects of any thing and everything that you are injesting because your answer may lie there, grasshopper.
S.T. answers from Washington DC on December 29, 2009
it's probably not post partum, but having a blegh period after childbirth is pretty common, and it seems to my (unscientific) observation that it happens more after kid #2. i had huge disconnect from the DH, work and friends after my second, and wasn't as smart as you in recognizing it and working to overcome it so it took quite a while. a newborn and a toddler is a LOT of work, so be gentle with yourself. seriously let the housework go if they both sleep at the same time, and catch up on your own rest. that's the single biggest thing that most young mothers do to deprive themselves, and exhaustion wreaks havoc. rest first and foremost, and pamper yourself a little when you have the chance, whether it's going to a movie (or for a glass of wine) with girlfriends or locking the bathroom door while you have a bubble bath with a good book or a scented candle. have a date night with your husband at least once a month, even if you don't feel like it. and know that many many others are going through or have gone through what you are, you are not alone.