Just Need Some Opinions and Feedback from This...

Updated on July 21, 2009
T.S. asks from Dallas, TX
66 answers

Okay so as most or some of you may already know, my husband and I are new parents to a beautiful 7 week baby girl named ALMA ESPERANZA "HOPE" SOTO. She arrived on Tuesday, June 2, 2009 at 6:29 PM weighing in at a healthy 6 pounds 14 ounces!!! She has been such a JOY in our lives!! We cannot imagine life without her!! My husband did/is still doing very well with her!! I thought he would be scared to hold her, afraid of the labor, not wanting to deal with diapers and crying..but..to my pleasant surprise, he did wonderful...it came totally natural to him!! Well, he recently went back to work from being on paternity leave, and we recently moved into an apartment. My sister and My father have both recently been diagnosed with cancer and my great grandmother passed away yesterday!! Life has been challenging..well, heres my issue, Since my hubby works nights, of course, i have Hope(baby)at night while hes working and again during the day so that he can sleep. While i LOVE my darling daughter to death and she brings me so much JOY!! It DOES take a toll on me. I hardly get any sleep, let alone a decent meal, or a shower for that matter. My husband gives me about an hour and a half when he gets home from work in the morning. In other words, he will be with Hope while i get things done, well in one hour and thrity minutes i have the choice of either a. taking a nap b. eating breakfast c. taking a shower d. housework or e. washing baby's bottles, clothes, getting her stuff ready for the day etc, etc....well which one do YOU think i do??? Of course, i always opt for bottle washing and getting baby ready for the day. Since my hubby has three days off during the week, i hand baby off to him those three days. Meaning, he takes completely over with her. Feeds her, bathes her, changes her, plays with her, washes and prepares her bottles..everything. After all, that is my life day and night for the rest of the four days of the week. Dont get me wrong, i dont just dump the baby on him and leave and ignore my daughter for three days, i am there too with him just in case he needs help and i do hold my daughter and occaisionally change her or feed her during this time. Well, lately, my hubby has been making me feel guilty for this. He says he doesnt mind taking care of her, he loves her, but he feels like i am punishing him in some sort of way by putting the baby off on him. In other words, he feels like i think the baby is a total punishment to him. That is not the case at all. What i want to know is, should i continue doing this, taking turns with the baby between my hubby and i? Or, am i still being harsh on my hubby by making him take completely over on his days off AND work 40 plus hours a week to support us. Should i just suck it up and not make him do all of the things i do when i have baby alone or should i continue letting him know what i go through when he is working? I am totally confused! I understand my husband works very hard to support us and thats why in some small way, i do think that i am being a little harsh but at the same time, i resent him when i am sitting up at three in the morning, feeding Hope and getting her back to sleep while i have not had a shower that day, let alone a meal, and chores are waiting to get done!! It is always at THAT MOMENT when i am having a hard time that i decide to be harsh towards him. Help, what should i do?

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So What Happened?

For those of you who read my prior posts,I will update the MIL issue, MIL has found a full time job and it looks permanent, also, she is very clear on the fact that we will no longer be 100 % responsible for her finances. As of now, we have agreed that if she pays all of her bills and still needs extra cash for food, gas, leizure etc... we will give her a set amount every two weeks.Or if she finds that she doesnt quite have enough to cover all of the bills then we will cover the remainder.I do not oppose to helping someone who is helping themselves. She seems okay with it and so far so good! As for the recent post regarding our parenting, well, MIRACULOUSLY, Hope HAS been sleeping through the night for the past four nights!!! WOW!! That has helped tremendously!! Also, I sat my husband down and we had a long talk and came to a compromise with the responsibilities. He no longer has full and total responsibility for Hope on his days off. we agreed that we would allow for each of us to have one day to ourselves. For example, one day that he is off, I go run errands, grocery shop, get my pedicure, visit with my sisters or friends etc,etc....whatever we wish to do with our free time even if it is sleeping all day while the other takes care of Hope. Instead of THREE days, it is just ONE and we BOTH get a day to ourselves. The other days, we will share the responsibilities. I have tried putting Hope down for a few minutes (20-30) at a time during the day while i get a few things done, including lunch! The problem was that she was not used to being put down anymore, she wanted to be held all of the time and she would cry whenever we tried to put her down. Dont get me wrong, she didnt start out this way, from the night that we brought her home, she was independent in the sense that she would sleep in her bassinet at night and would be okay while being put down during the day,whether she was asleep or awake. During the process of us moving, I had her sleeping on my chest for appr a week because our apartment didnt have all of our furniture moved from the house yet, including her crib. She grew out of the bassinet. (literally!!) It seems as though after we became situated and i began to put her back into her routine, she refused and would become fussy after being put down. Thankfully, it didnt take much to get her used to it again!! Phew!! In other areas, as i have mentioned, we have moved into an apartment. My husband took a part time position with the complex and therefore, we receive a disount on rent which means, free rent for our one bedroom. We decided to take it for a couple of reasons, first, we would like to do some major renovations to the house and this way, we could make those changes without having to be in the way, secondly, since we do not pay rent,we could save a little money to begin Hope's savings.Although my husband has a house already, my father in law still resides there so really, we werent alone at the house, we had my father in law there as well. My FIL passed the house down to my husband. It is kind of an old house so it does need a little work that we can finally get done. For the most part, things are not BAD! I guess it was just transitioning and adjusting to the change that was hard. Now that we are settled, we can move foward. On the down side of things, I am dealing with my sister and my father's cancer diagnosis. It has been challenging, add to that I just said Good Bye to my Great Grandmother today, she passed last week. May she rest in peace! I know that this is just that thing we call LIFE and that its all part of growing up and becoming wiser and stronger!! So, that is the plan, to move on and stay strong!! Thank You for all of the many wonderful words of advice and opinion. I took everyones suggestions into consideration. Thank You Once again!! I shall return!!

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H.D.

answers from Dallas on

I have 4 children and my husband has always worked nights. I have always done everything. It is hard at first but you will get a routine down and it will all fall into place. I think it is ok for him to help on days off but don't push it all on him. Remember when it comes to chores around the house you are not superwomen and some things aren't going to get done. This was a hard one for me to accept cause I had always kept my house spot less. We can only do so much in a day. I hope this helps you and it will get better.

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S.T.

answers from Dallas on

To me, it sounds like you are punishing him. Stop trying to be super woman. You don't have to get everything done.

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C.C.

answers from Dallas on

Well, I've tried this twice and lost it each time, so I'll try this time and if it goes, it goes. (Maybe I'm trying to say too much)

Yes, it sounds harsh and it seems like you are punishing your husband. Maybe punish is not the right word....maybe penalize or teaching him a lesson (i.e. English Dictionary: make somebody understand something) by 'letting him know what i go through when he is working.'

opinions & feedback: I'm sorry, T., but I feel that his complaint is valid.

Please consider the following:
- how many moms would trade places with you in a minute to have a husband who worked 40+ hours a week so they could stay home with their new baby.
- how many moms get little or NO help from their husbands.
- how many moms have to go back to work & leave their newborn with someone else.

What I glean is: your husband works 40+ hours a week-I'm assuming it is a 4-day work week, 10 hrs a day (since he's off 3 days); So, after his 40+ hr work week, 'he takes completely over with her: Feeds her, bathes her, changes her, plays with her, washes and prepares her bottles...everything for 3 days' (72 hours), since 'After all, that is my life day & night for the rest of the four days of the week.' So, he has 72 hours responsibility to your 96, correct? ....PLUS his 40+ hours at work -(PLUS his 1 1/2 hour every morning when he gets home.)

T., you don't say what you do during the 3 days you 'hand the baby off to him' except that: 'Dont get me wrong, i dont just dump the baby on him & leave & ignore my daughter for three days, i am there too with him just in case he needs help & i do hold my daughter & occaisionally change her or feed her during this time.'

It appears to me that YOU actually have more 'down time' than HE does.

I'm confused about the no shower/no meal thing. Most babies at 7 weeks sleep the majority of the time unless they have colic or something. I do not understand why you would not have time for a shower and a meal. I mean, yes, it's a 24/7 responsiblity, but your baby is not going to be awake/up/demanding your attention the whole time!

Yes, you may have to get up once or twice a night to feed/change her. This is NOT a permanent situation. Before long, Hope will be sleeping through the night. You will STILL have the same situation of keeping her quiet so your husband can sleep during the day.

May I suggest that when you're up at 3 in the morning feeding Hope and getting her back to sleep, instead of feeling resentment for your husband, gaze upon the face of your precious little girl & remember the love that made her & thank God for her father & his dedication to you & to your daughter. Sleep when she sleeps.

I'm no psychologist, T., but I think you have a lot of things going on here. You've had 5 MAJOR issues recently: birth of your baby, moving into new apartment, husband going back to work after paternity leave, father/sister diagnosed with cancer & great grandmother's death. Any single one of those things would be a lot to handle in just a few months and you've had them all.

I'm feeling that you're overwhelmed with all of it & probably depressed. Some of the main symptoms of depression are: feeling overwhelmed with life, resentment, anger, change in eating/ sleeping habits, change in hygiene. We usually take out our frustrations on those closest to us. Obviously you can't blame/resent Hope, so hubby is next in line. Just try to remember that it's NOT HIS FAULT. He's doing the best he can.

I'm wondering if, on his 3 days off, you guys could share the responsibilities - not just the baby, but the cooking, running the vacuum, etc.

Better yet, why don't you plan an outing. Get a sitter or leave Hope with a friend/relative (a lot of churches have a 'mother's day out' drop-in program. Have a nice lunch/dinner, go to a movie, go look at antiques - whatever you like to do together. Take a nap together. Take Hope to the park. Put her in the stroller & go for a walk in the evening & watch the sunset.

I'm concerned that your "A little about me" statement is going to go from "SAHM, happily married, mother to 7 week old baby girl! First and only!" to "FTW Single mom with beautiful baby girl"

Don't let that happen. Don't let resentment build in your heart toward your husband. Please - talk to each other. Spend some time together. Share concerns and frustrations. Be tender with each other. He's experiencing all of these things too - because he loves YOU. So, what hurts/bothers you, hurts & bothers him too. If he didn't care, he wouldn't be there. Oh, and try to remember at 3 in the mroning when you're resenting HIM .... that he's probably at work, exhausted, wishing he could be home with you & Hope.

Good luck!

Prayers!

Been there/done that! (Single FTWM is HARD - you don't want to go there!!!)

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A.C.

answers from Dallas on

When we had our son, we were new to Texas and had no friends or family at all, so there was no support system, except each other. You need to remember that you are a TEAM and to work together, not against each other. Yes, your husband is probably feeling pulled in the fact that he doesn't want to leave his 2 great loves, but he also knows he has no choice and must provide, and work towards a better life. Not only did I have to get up every 3 hours for all but ONE feeding (on long work days, my husband only did a 9pm feeding because that's the only one he was home for-I went to bed at 8:50 on those nights), but my son was in the NICU as a preemie for a couple weeks so he was spoiled to the bottle (but it was important to me that he eat breastmilk in the bottle) so I had to get up extra early to pump, THEN feed, then change, then clean up the stuff and prep for the next feeding. I really was only getting to lay down for about 90 minutes until time to get up and start the process again. Sometimes, I know I was so tired I'd just want to cry (especially in the night b/c I'm not a night person). Hormones, body changes, learning the baby, setting the routine, your family stuff, and the pressure you feel as a first time mom add up to be a lot on your plate so I DO sympathize with you.
There's a few suggestions I have, but first let me say that you are being too rough on your husband, even with all you've got on your plate. The three days that you're off baby duty: are you getting up, showered, dressed for work, and WORKING (family income) 10 hours a day? And don't forget to give him a 90 minute break to do whatever he chooses after you return from a full day of work. Otherwise, it IS unreasonable to expect him to do your full job the days he's off. You're blessed, even if you're feeling tired and overwhelmed. You've got a man who wants to be a team player. Don't nag him and push him away from time with the baby.
Make a list, maybe one day while your husband is home---while he's feeding the baby you can be discussing this together and writing the list out: what needs to be done every week, and others that are every day. Then figure out how you'll work together to SHARE those baby duties and chores on the 3 days your husband is off, and the others are what you do as a stay at home mom, period. It is the job. We lived in an apartment for our first baby and my husband took out the trash, cleaned the bathroom, and sometimes mopped the tiny kitchen. I would dust, vacuum, and windex the 2 mirrors. I did take care of all the bottles and stuff but I'd have it all prepared and then my husband could do the feeding when he was home. I would give the baths and do the fingernails, and we shared the diapers (basically whoever was closest at the time). I did the cooking (except on Sundays, when my husband cooked a nice breakfast), and we worked as a TEAM to clean up the kitchen afterwards. Same for making the bed on laundry day-we both put the sheets on the bed and chatted as we did it; it would take about 2 minutes at the most. The chores got done, at least once a week, and were all done before lunchtime with the 2 of us working together. (Except laundry, which was ongoing...and we helped each other fold clothes if he was around).
I would suggest (from experience) that you get up and take a shower (either while the baby is asleep, or put a baby einstein video on-I'd pick these up from the library for free once a week) and let your baby swing and watch this video while you take a quick shower. True, you're not going to have nice leisurely showers unless your husband is there (and you should let him have one too because that's teamwork) but realistically, most don't take long showers everyday even without a baby in the picture. Do that asap so that you feel more energized and aware that you're "on the job" now. Get dressed, in clothes not pjs. Brush your teeth. Frankly, it takes discipline. You won't feel like doing it, but if you do, the day does go much better, and it really wouldn't take more than 20 minutes, about the length of the Baby Einstein video, to get showered, dressed, and teeth brushed. (Not suggesting you try to do anything fancy, but now you're at least presentable and feel good about yourself, and comfortable).
We had a baby bjorn (similar to a sling, so I could carry him on me, hands free) to do basics like washing off the counters, making bottles, sterilizing, etc. I'd put the baby in his infant carrier and place it on the table top so he could watch me and I'd chat to him while paying bills, writing thank you cards, or do dinner preparations like chopping vegetables and stirring stuff in the mixing bowls. It could be completely random stuff like "these are onions; you're gonna be in trouble in this house, if you don't like onions" or asking about their nap, or whatever. It's just precious time that you'll miss later---getting to chat and watching the facial expressions change as they try to understand or mimic your tones. Give the baby a little toy to hold or shake at you while you do this. It's quite pleasant. Then when it's time to do the actual cooking on the stove or whatever, you will put the baby in the swing or bouncer with a happy little CD to entertain the 2 of you. I would play a different genre of music every time, to keep things different, and now I'm glad for that because he's got a huge appreciation for all kinds of music.
Naps are for NAPPING. Your baby surely naps A LOT right now. Use that: you wash the bottles right after they're used so they are super easy to wash/sterilize. During naptime, you NAP, read, journal, or do laundry. Reading, journaling (or baby book), and napping are vital to rejuvinating yourself. When you feel ok with taking your daughter around other children, join a moms or mops group for support, grown up talk, fun, and sharing ideas. Also, take a walk around your complex or to the park with the baby because the exercise helps you feel better physically. When your husband comes home, give him a hug/kiss and thank him for working all night long for you guys. Remembering to nurture your marriage will only add to the security and happiness that you want for your daughter, as well as you guys. And when someone feels appreciated, he'll be encouraged to continue helping. That's just human nature.

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G.W.

answers from Dallas on

Dear T.,
All of us reading your request are going to absolutely know how you're feeling. Babies are precious but never are we really prepared for the shock of how much hard work it is taking care of them.
That being said, I find myself agreeing with your husband. While I certainly sympathize with all the work you do so he can rest and go to work (I had twin boys that I would feed back to back twice a night while my husband slept), this really is temporary, it will end sooner than you think if you are persistent with a schedule. On the days that hubby is home, you should be sharing in the duties. Obviously, he should be kind enough to take the night feedings when he can so you can catch up on rest but during the day you should work as partners to care for your little angel. If bottles need washing but baby is crying, then one holds while the other washes, it's just that simple. If diapers need changing, then take turns, afterall, it only takes two minutes to do it. Trade off on the bath times or better yet, do it together, it's a sweet bonding time for you as a family.
I guess I'm just saying that you sound pretty lucky to have a husband that is willing to help you out, some women on this site sound like they are married to lazy bums. You created this little girl together so work together with happy hearts to care for her. Believe me when I tell you, life is very fragile, we almost lost one of our twin boys last Sept. He spent 99 days in the hospital with an illness that nearly killed him. Things like that have a way of helping you realize that dirty bottles and changing diapers aren't such a big deal, in fact, they are really a privilege because it means you have a healthy baby to care for. One thing I like to do when I feel irritated with my husband is look at 1 Corinthians 13- the love chapter. If you read that, it will help you remember what it looks like to really love your spouse. It will help you with some of the resentment you're feeling.
You're still in the early stages of parenting, it's all new and you're both trying to figure out the system that works for you. You're in this together, you're not enemies, you are on the same side and want the same thing. It's not about who does the most. You just have different roles and being a stay at home mom, you're going to be doing more to take care of the baby, plain and simple. Try to nap when she naps which should still be quite a lot. You don't have to hold her every single minute, put her in the swing in the kitchen and sing to her while you're washing bottles. Believe me, you can multitask with a newborn, you just gotta figure it out.
Hang in there, it'll be ok, don't be too hard on your hubby, he sounds like a prize!

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L.B.

answers from Dallas on

I'm leaving for work so I have not taken time to read all your responses. Please forgive me if I repeat what has already been said.

I realize that it has been 31 years since I have had a baby to take care of, BUT . . . hon, a baby does NOT take 24 hours in a day!! Does she never sleep? You should have plenty of time during the day to at least take a shower and eat. I know they are high maintenance, but it sounds like you are holding her 24/7 ?? Just lay her in her crib and take a shower. Babies need some alone time too, just like us.

As far as your husband, I have to agree with him to a certain extent. What you have described is this. He works 4 days a week and takes care of the baby 3 days a week. You take care of the baby 4 days a week and have 3 days a week off. Does this sound fair to you? I think a compromise would be that he works 4 days a week, takes care of the baby 2 days a week and gets to have at least 1 day a week for himself. And you take care of the baby 5 days a week and have 1 day a week for yourself. Doesn't this sound more fair to you?

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A.A.

answers from Dallas on

Dear T.,

Let me first of all say that it is normal that you are out of wack and will be that for a while. Given the fact that you have just given birth, your hormones are not yet in check. Also with the family situation with Dad and sister, it does not help.

However going to the issue at hand, let me answer your question.
YES you are being resentful and unrealistic.

You should suck it up, take care of your baby which should be your full time and only responsibility right now. When baby sleeps, you can sleep. When baby is fed, put her down and feed yourself. When baby is napping, take a quick shower. When baby is fed, put her down and wash bottles. At 7 weeks what do they do but sleep, eat. You talked about getting her stuff ready for the day. What is that? Get hubby to do that part. Please do not turn him off from his darling wife and baby. Let it happen naturally. There is a reason why you have breast for baby and not him. Time will come when they will be inseparable. For now this is your duty.
Remember that when he goes to work he cannot hand you his job? Remember that he cannot decide to not go to work. Do you think he loves leaving his 2 favorite people home? But he must do it to take care of you all. He is the man and you are his wife. Do your parts to make things work. Do not assign things to him. If you married a decent man, then trust him.
Set up good routines for you and your baby and things will be sorted.

Good luck

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K.W.

answers from Dallas on

I am in the same situation now. You really need to suck it up. This won't be a popular answer, but his job right now is to monetarily provide while your job is to take care of baby. You said he also takes care of her totally for three days plus works 40? So that leaves you with taking care of her for one more day than him (4 days) and you don't have to work a 40 hour work week? You've got a good man. As they get older, it becomes easier. You won't be feeling overwhelmed in a couple of weeks.

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B.S.

answers from Dallas on

Disclaimer, only my opinion :-)

In my opinion, I think that you guys hsould do what you enjoy. I think on hubby's day off, since he's there, let him take care of Hope whileyou "catch up. Like on showers and any chores that you'd like to get done. Then you guys just divey the rest of the chores like yard work, running errands etc. I know how you feel about the getting up at 3 in the morning. I did all the getting up till my son was about 1 1/2 yrs old.

Division of labor- it's difficult for it to appear "fair."

One person is bringin' in the bacon while the other is getting up 3 times a night and taking care of the life of a newborn.

You need both to make it work.

For me, I think the Most important, is that you guys (husband & wife) continue to take care of each other and your reltionship with one another first. Focus on serving each other and helping each other, and the rest will iron out relatively smoothly.

My girlfriend told me about 5 years ago, to, "Stop, Pray, Make a List!" In that order. It helps to do that at least once a day :-)

Good Luck. It get's easier. My sons are 3 & 10 now, and although Juan wasn't usually the one to get up in the middle of the night and he changed 20% of dirty diapers. Our roles have shifted a little and he's the one that plays with the kids and plans little acivities with them :-)

Remember, take care of each other first... Hope will be happy when both of you is happy. :-)

Just my 2 cents :-D

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C.R.

answers from Dallas on

I've been married 36 years to my husband, and we have ten children, seven biological, three adopted from the foster care system. I've always been the caregiver for the children. Since I breastfed, there was no handing them to hubby for feeding.
It's a little hard to get the hang of it when your first baby is new, but with all the children I've had, I can't see why you can't care for a baby and still manage to get the other stuff done, too, at least most of it. For the first few weeks, your not going to get much sleep, and that's just that. But you will survive. If my husband came home and gave me an hour and a half (which never happened) I'd opt for the shower. Get a sling for the baby if you can't ever put her down, and get your housework done while baby is nestled on your chest.
I don't think it's fair that you make hubby do all the care on the days he's off. As a stay at home mom, that's your job. To be honest, I loved caring for my babies so much, I wouldn't even have wanted to do that. Have him help out when he's willing, but when hubbys off work, you continue to be the stay at home mom, and praise God that you have a husband that's okay with that, and makes enough money for you to do it.

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C.S.

answers from Dallas on

T., you should be careful putting too much info on the internet for your safety and the safety of the baby.

Also, no. It's not fair to hand over baby - you should be working as a team.

Try reading "Baby Wise" and put your baby on a schedule. It works so wonderful. It puts baby on a schedule, gets her to sleep all night and give you a peace of mind so you can have time to take care of yourself.

Once you have time for yourself, you will have time for your husband and he for you and baby raising will be more enjoyable.

Join a moma's group too so you are not dependent on his company and you will be happy when he is at home.

If you are feeling too overwhelmed or too sad, go back and visit the doctor and talk with him. ALso , don't be afraid to ask the help of family.

God bless your new family, C.

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H.B.

answers from Dallas on

I try not to laugh as I am reading this. I think every mother goes through this. My husband works out of town and comes home one weekend out of the month. I can give you some ways that I cope with a new baby(I've had 3) on my own. I nap when the baby naps. I let the baby sleep with me so that we don't have to go through the routine of waking up and getting out of bed-we just nurse in bed. It's a lifesaver. I did not do it with my first daughter and it would have saved me a lot of tears. I would bring the baby seat in the bathroom with me and the baby would sleep/be calm while I showered. I ate a lot of ceral, pick a healthy one. If you don't have a baby swing, get one from freecycle or craigslist, another lifesaver. It sounds like you have an awesome husband. Most husbands do not take over completely when they are not working.
You will find a groove that works for both of you. It just takes some time to adjust. One day you will look back at this and think, one baby is a walk in the park! LOL

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L.S.

answers from Tyler on

Count your blessings that you have a husband. I chose to be a single mother and so I had my babies (2) at home by myself for three months before I went back to work. You CAN take a shower anytime you want. You just need to put the baby in a the bathroom with you so you can see her. You CAN nap when the baby naps. You CAN wash bottles when the baby is on the floor playing by herself. You CAN do all of these things. The baby is 7 weeks old already, so you will start feeling better soon. I felt better starting at 9 weeks with my first baby and about 8 with my 2nd. Sleep will start getting better too. The best thing you can do for yourself is to establish a routine.

I personally don't think you need to dump the baby on your husband on his days off. But, if you DO need a nap when he is home, then you need to take it. That's the best part of having someone else in the house with you is getting that extra nap.

-L.

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M.W.

answers from Dallas on

My baby is nine months old & there are still times I go without showering or a hot meal. :)

Your husband sounds like he's very involved in helping you with the baby. You're very lucky to get an hour and a half every day, plus three days a week that he'll be solely responsible for Hope on top of a full weeks' work. Infact, I'd say you're asking a bit too much of your man.

Rather than feeling resentful towards him, try to remember that he'd probably rather be at home with his girls. He's a great man for working hard to support his ladies and could probably use a bit more recognition for that. I think we mommas get so stressed and tired and caught up in our day to day things that need to get done but never seem to that we take a lot out on our men. Try to have a different perspective and see if you feel a bit less resentment.

I know that when you've been home all day with a crying, demanding newborn, it's sooo easy to feel pissed at him for being able to go out into the world and talk to grownups. But, that attitude will only cause problems. Show him love and respect for his hard work; tell him how proud you are of him and thankful. He'll want to help you even more if you're sweet to him.
I say, give him a break with the three days of nonstop Hope-having. Enjoy those days as a family as much as you can. Hope will grow up so fast!

You're still very very early in the mommy game! It'll get easier, you'll get more sleep and Hope will get even cuter and cuddlier. Give your man a break. He sounds like a good, involved daddy. :)
Oh! I wanted to add: get yourself a sling or wrap to keep the little one in during the day. She'll benefit from the close contact and you'll benefit from being able to get things done! Also, TAKE A NAP when your husband watches her for that hour and a half. TAKE A NAP! SLEEP!

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A.M.

answers from Dallas on

You've gotten great advice so far, so I will just say, we have all been there. Newborns are difficult and you don't get much sleep or time to yourself. It will get better. But, don't expect Hubby to do your job on his days off unless you are willing to go do his job on your days off ;-)
I'm a SAHM with two boys, 2 years and 9 months. My husband only gets two days off, and on those two days, we are equally responsible for the kids and the chores.
I know this isn't in your question, but I really recommend you join a mommies group. If nothing else, for support of other moms in these difficult times. I started Stroller Strides when my first was 5 months old and it helped so much. Check out meetup.com for a group near you.
Good luck,
A.

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W.L.

answers from Dallas on

You have just had a baby so your hormones are in control and you are possibly not thinking straight. If you were working on the three days that your husband was not than he should take care of the baby while you work. You are probably sleep deprived so when your husband comes home hit the bed. You can get a lot done with a 7 week old because they are not yet mobile, Put your daughter on the floor of the bathroom in her bouncy seat or in a stroller and get in the shower or bathtub while your husband is at work. A little sleep and relaxation will make you have a better outlook. Find a mom's group, you need to talk to other women in the same stage of life. Part of parenting is working together to raise and enjoy your child, if you are each resenting each other neither the marriage or the child rearing will go very well. It is not unreasonable to want a break when your husband is off of work but it is to make him take over completely. While he is there take that chance to go for lunch with a friend, see a movie, have a manicure, visit the library, read a book, do a craft project or sleep but limit the time because he needs time to decompress too. You have had a lot happen in a very short job but be happy you have a husband who is willing to help. I had a friend with a 1 and 3 year old whose husband would not watch the children at all, even if he was home she had to hire a babysitter if she wanted to go to the grocery store. Good luck with your little bundle of joy and ease up on hubby, he is probably not getting enough sleep either.

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T.M.

answers from Dallas on

Hi T. S. this is T. M. and after reading your message I would like to make some suggestions. First I would like to say that I am sorry to hear about the passing of your great grandmother and the illness of your sister and father. It can be very challenging taking care of a newborn and handling other life issues with little help and sleep. I would try napping at night and during the day when Hope is sleeping, I know it may not be for long but little power naps go a long way when you need it. Also you can try putting Hope in a playpen while she's napping in front of your bathroom with the door open while you take a long bubble bath for yourself. This way if Hope starts to cry or wake up you can see her in the playpen from the tub. This could help a little on the days that your husband is working. On the days that he is off you can take a few hours for yourself to enjoy some good sleep. I don't think that you are being harsh with your husband because parenting is a two way street and there is no such thing as a DAY OFF WORK when you have children. Sacrafice and compromise is a huge part of marriage and parenting and both you and your husband should have equal parts in both. One persons job does not out weight the other. Your husbands job is very important because the bills have to be paid but your job in taking care of Hope and your home daily is equally important. I HOPE THIS WILL HELP.

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J.H.

answers from Dallas on

T.,
Remember this...This too shall pass. Your baby girl will grow so quickly during the first three months of life. Before you know it, you will be out of this stage. Take a deep breath and enjoy every minute of it. My friends told me that time would fly bye when my son was born. During those hard times, as you mentioned, I didn't believe them. But it did! Now I wish that I could turn back time and enjoy those late night feedings, to sit and rock him as often as I want, and not worry about the chores. My suggestion is to keep snacks with you at all times and bottled water. Let the chores go, they will still be around when your baby and you have had the time to adjust and get to know each other. If the chores not being done bother your hubby, he will eventually help out. Your baby needs your constant care and bonding time. A great book to read that really helped me was The Happiest Baby on the Block. This time will fly bye so quickly! Enjoy every minute of it!

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K.M.

answers from Dallas on

Hi T.:

Boy - reading your letter reminded me so much of when our 3 year old son was born! My husband starting complaining, too. When he would get home from work, he would pick up the baby and basically end up taking care of him for the rest of the night so that I could; cook, do laundry, clean the house, etc.

Imagine a husband getting upset because his wife is doing chores!

I basically just ignored him and he stopped complaining! At that point, I couldn't be responsible for his happiness while I was responsible for a newborn, a 6 year old and myself!

One hint. I used to put both of my babies in a bouncy seat in the bathroom while I showered. That way you know they are safe and you can still talk to them to keep them calm while you are out of sight.

I hope some of this helps, in any small way!
Good luck and Congratulations on your new Hope!

T.V.

answers from Dallas on

Have you considered getting some help. If there are no family and friends available maybe you could get a postpartum doula. A doula would provide the time for you to eat, shower and nap and while you are resting she will take care of your daughter and help with all the other things housework, washing baby clothes, washing bottles. refilling diapers, babywipes, etc. Many doulas will come in for just 3-4 hours a day. his would provide the rest and help that both you and your husband need. If you would like more information on a postpartum doula please let me know.

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L.D.

answers from Dallas on

Hi, T.-
Well, first of all, I do think you are being a little harsh on your husband. As a mother of nine, I have been in your situation 9 times. When you decided to have a baby and agreed to be a stay at home mom, that became your full-time job. Your husband also has a full-time job. When your husband has time off, you should at least split the time with the baby, not dump it ALL on him. You also need to be good to yourself and sleep when the baby sleeps, even if it is during the day. You can relax a little on the housework for a month or so, while you regain your strength from the 9 month drain your body endured. My daughter is in a similar situation as you are, where her husband does shift work, and their agreement is that any time he is home, they take turns on everything with the baby (changing diapers, bathing, feeding bottles, rocking and soothing the baby, making meals and doing the laundry). It has allowed them to negotiate, such as, "I know it's my turn to care for the baby, and your turn to make dinner, but how about a trade?" I think this situation will give you a lot of options such as, he can play golf for 6 hours on Saturday, if you can have 6 hours of free time on Sunday, etc. And remember, every day that goes by, it should get better. You will start to regain your stamina and feel better within a couple of weeks, and the baby could (I say should) start sleeping all night within a month or so. Those little changes will make a world of difference in your outlook. And remember- Motherhood is not for wimps!! Sometimes you just have to suck it up!!

PS- If the baby is not sleeping through the night within a month, email me. All of my babies slept 10 hours by the time they were 6 weeks old. I have a very good system. (or you can ask me any mother advice!) [email protected]____.com

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J.C.

answers from Dallas on

T.,

It sounds like you and your husband need to really sit down without the baby around and talk! If you guys can't communicate and talk about how each of you are feeling...this is NEVER going to work. I understand what you mean about resenting him, but you need to put that aside because your baby can really pick up on that. You baby is your JOB...don't worry if the house work doesn't get done, it will start getting done once the baby gets on a better routine. It is very hard to be a mommy, but oh, what a wonderful job it is! I love it!!! Maybe your husband can do the house work on his 3 days off and you take care of the baby. Just a thought...or maybe put her in mothers day out 2 days a week and give yourself sometime to get things done.
Good luck and enjoy Hope.

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L.V.

answers from Dallas on

Wow, you have gotten TONS of great responses! You probably don't need mine, but I'll give it anyway. =)

I remember when my daughter was born, it was very difficult to adjust, and my husband and I were constantly is Survival Mode. It was every parent for him/herself! It's easy to get that way when there isn't enough sleep to go around and when hormones are going crazy, and it seems like there's not enough time in the day. I, too, stayed at home at first, and I would hand off the baby when my husband got home from work just for some sanity.

Well, what I didn't think about at the time was that he had just spent all day being responsible for the well-being and discipline of 150 kids (teacher, of course), many of whom didn't even want to be there, and he didn't want to do any more of that right when he got home! So, we worked out a deal. He got an hour (sometimes more if it was a bad day or something) when he got home to de-stress from the day and watch TV or exercise (and sometimes cook dinner) or whatever he needed to do, and then he took over with our daughter. He also did most of the child stuff on weekends and that allowed me to get a break as well.

So, on your husband's days off, maybe you could work out a schedule that lets him do the majority, since you definitely need a break, but it still allows him to have some time completely off from his week (and his child) that he needs. He is adjusting to the new situation just as much as you are, and he is probably under just as much stress, even if he's not good at expressing his feelings. You have to constantly communicate your needs and listen to his. Guys are sometimes emotion-dumb. They don't know what you need unless you tell them.

There is some good news, though. It does get better. Right now is the hardest time as far as stress goes. As soon as your girl starts sleeping through the night, life gets so much better! Hang in there! Good luck!

Oh, one last thing. My cousin and I both did this when we had kiddos. If you have a time when you're feeling overwhelmed, and it's when your husband is home, arrange a specific sentence for the both of you to use (in case he needs it too) when you're getting too stressed to handle being a parent at the moment. We used, "Honey, I need to you to take the child immediately." That was our code to know that our partner was feeling overwhelmed, and it was our time to take over and take care of our child and our spouse. It helped us a lot since our girl had horrible reflux and has asthma, and so she cried A LOT until we got everything regulated. Hope this helps!

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K.V.

answers from Dallas on

My daughter and her husband have the same schedule. On top of the infant, she also has a 2 1/2 year old VERY active boy. 3 1/2 nights a week he is working. The other days he is home. On the work days, he is up for about an hour after work to eat and play with the kids. He then sleeps till 3-4 in the afternoon. When he first went back to work, I tried to go help her on the days he was sleeping so she would get a break. On the days off they spend time together, but let's face it. For her husband to be on his schedule (and probably your husband too) is much like being a new mom of an infant. You are always tired! Much of that just comes with the territory for a time.

The best thing I would recommend is to sleep when the baby sleeps! That is survival time! The housework, etc. will happen when it really needs to. You are better off hiring someone or asking for help from your church to do the household duties. You can also look for a postpartum doula for help at www.dona.org. They even work a night shift if that is what you want. Then you could get a good night's sleep knowing that your baby is well cared for.

What your baby needs most is HAPPY RESTED PARENTS! She will never know about the bathroom or any room that did not get dusted or the unfolded laundry in a basket. Her future depends on your love and care of her. THAT is what she will remember. Take this from a woman who has raised 3 daughters who are now married and having their own children.

This too shall pass; but your relationship with your husband and baby is the most important!

Hope all goes well for you, T..

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R.C.

answers from Dallas on

Do you have anyone in your family that you can ask to help you? If not, do you know anyone that you could pay to be a Mommy's helper? During the summer and children are out of school you might be able to find someone who lives close to you to help. Just an idea.

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K.S.

answers from Dallas on

It is very overwhelming right in the beginning, especially with your first. I can understand where you're coming from. However, I think it is awesome that your husband is willing to give what he can. I remember not getting much help at all and not having the option to receive help from my hubby, as his load was already immense. I would have cried tears of joy if my husband had the option of even helping out a little. Try to encourage him in what he can do. Share your feelings with him and let him know how much you appreciate him.

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R.W.

answers from Dallas on

Now I've been married twice, neither time did I have help with the babies and so if you don't want to heed my advice, I'd understand, but in hindsight I wish I would have given him more opportunity to help. He really liked coming to my aid before we married, and then I didn't have him do anything. I even did the lawn work. He jumped to it if I ever had car trouble. I just want you to know that sleep deprivation changes you!! Just make sure you take care of you. Say, I'm going to take a shower, could you listen for Hope? Don't just put her in his hands. If she cries he's coming to her rescue. Let him do some chores while you do things, then both of you relax together when you have the chance and laugh and have fun. Don't let it overwhelm you. If you have girlfriends or family in the area, I'd suggest hanging out with them with Hope because they'll take turns holding her and give you much needed socialization time. Oh yeah, and sleep when she sleeps, let the other stuff go for a while. Chin up girl! You're not alone!

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L.C.

answers from Dallas on

I have a 5 year old and a 5 month old and am preggo with number 3. Let me tell you what works for me. first thing in the morning put your little one in her swing or bouncer while you prepare breakfast/coffee and start a load of laundry. at lunch time switch the laundry and make a quick turkey and cheese sandwich...can make the food in less than a minute. nap when your darling little one naps!!!! get at least one nap a day! the reason you feel so unhappy is because you are exhausted. i wouldnt have specific days that only your hubby watches the kiddo. give him an hour and a half on his days that he can totally have to himself. have dinner be something simple to heat up. remember you do not need to hold your little one all day. put her bouncer in the bathroom and take a shower everyday. invite friends or family over (one at a time and space them out all month long) to start socializing more. meet up for lunch at least once a week. get out of the apartment. make a simple list that you can accomplish everyday so you can check off as you go. perhaps you are upset and angry more at yourself...and projecting your feelings toward your husband. they usually get the good and bad of us all. (sorry hubbys) sorry for just rambling and throwing out random thoughts but hope this helps.

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D.S.

answers from Dallas on

I would recommend picking up healthly sleep habits, happy child by Dr Mark Weissbluth. It sounds like you little one isn't napping well. You should be able to grab a shower and get some stuff done while the baby naps. I usually shower and clean up while the little one naps. I was a single mom with my first kiddo and he was horribly collicky so I understand what it is like to do it all by yourself and it was really hard until my little one starting taking good naps.
I am married now and my husband and I have two little ones. We try to do a 50/50 split on his days off. For example, I am nursing the newborn so he changes all the diapers and keeps the 2 year old entertained in the morning so that I can nap.
Don't be too hard on yourself or your husband. A baby is a life altering event and taking care of a baby sucks most of the time (but it's totally worth it).
Hang in there it will get easier :)

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C.H.

answers from Dallas on

I am in the same boat right now. My husband is a firefighter and so he works 24 hours and then he's off 48. Well the last few weeks he has been working overtime since I do not have an income right now. So he sleeps at work one night, sleeps with me the second night(when he's not working overtime) and sleeps in the guest room the third night so he can get a good night's sleep before work the next day. But I am up every 2-3 hours with my 3 wk old son throughout every night. Sometimes I am very stressed as well. There just never seems to be enough time in the day! My advice would be to sleep when your daughter sleeps. I really try to do this for at least a few of my son's naps throughout the day. One of his naps, usually around mid afternoon, I shower and do a few things around the house. My hubby helps out by cooking when he's home so that there are healthy leftovers full of protein and fiber so that I can have the energy to take care of our son. You Have to take care of yourself so that you can be at your BEST for your daughter... physically and emotionally. Try to have somewhat of a schedule and try to stick to it while still remaining somewhat flexible. On the days my husband is off, we go grocery shopping and run errands, so I can get out of the house. When he's home, I still do mainly everything for our son, but my husband helps out with other chores around the house.
Remember you are a team and you have to work together to find a balance that works for your family. Best of luck to you all.

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L.F.

answers from Dallas on

I am probably going to have a completely different point of view than most other people because I breastfed both of my kids. Therefore, I did everything and hubby didn't do much (no bottle washing, etc). I envy you to get him to do so much. I have a 2 and 3 year old and think a 7 week old is much easier. When you have a baby, lack of sleep is hard. Your hormones are also taking a toll. Not to mention, I am so sorry to hear about your family.
To take showers, put the baby in a vibrating chair and you can see her while you get ready. That worked wonders for me. For me, I personally think my job is to take care of the kids because he goes to work. On the weekends, I still do baths, etc. I know that sounds so old fashioned, but I do enjoy it. Try to give him some slack. Chores are going to get done more in a few weeks. Newborns are an adjustment, but take advantage of how much they sleep. You can do things then.

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A.D.

answers from Dallas on

The first thing I want you to know is that this is perfectly normal. Having a new baby is one of the most difficult times in your life, but also the most rewarding. (Who can resist a cute, lagging little one!)
The first thing to remember is that you & your dh are on the same team. You both want the same things and are really working together. There will be sacrifice from everyone until your child is much older. Maybe sit down and talk together (at a quiet time when baby is sleeping or something) about how you can divide the responsibility so no one is overwhelmed. And you can be thankful you have such a helpful husband. Many hubbys put in very little baby time.
Next you can make strategies for getting things done and taking care of YOU. Do you have close friends or relatives in the area who could help out here & there? Even just an understanding ear is priceless!
Some suggestions: sleep when the baby sleeps. Really. Take naps, it helps a lot to get some rest.
Try taking a bath with baby. I know, it sounds weird but it works. It's not as nice as getting a by yourself shower, but it gets you clean and that feels soooo good!
Get a baby carrier!!! It sounds like you could use some time with free hands. My little one took his morning nap in the carrier while I did other things like eating, dusting, etc.
Mos of all, hangin there! Before you know it she'll be off to school and you will be wondering where's my baby! So if things are dirty and messy now, oh well, let it be, it will get cleaned eventually. My rule is to take care of people before things.
Good luck!

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D.C.

answers from Dallas on

I suggest you follow one very important rule. SLEEP WHEN SHE SLEEPS. Don't worry about whether there is laundry to do or bottles to clean or dishes etc. Sleep when she sleeps. Then you will have the energy to get what needs to get done done. Its hard, but it will only be for a short while, then your baby will start sleeping thru the night and you will feel more rested etc. etc. I promise you it will all pass.

Good luck! No one is going to care if the house was messy 50 years from now, so let it go until you get back to feeling 100% rested (OK maybe 80% rested) .

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M.B.

answers from Dallas on

T.,

After so many responses, I am not sure that you will even take the time to read this. I know you have already been told many forms of "this is normal, you will adjust, don't punish your husband, motherhood is 24/7."

However, I just wanted you to know that you will adjust. You will find normalcy and start getting showers again someday. It will take effort on your part, but honestly you are getting through the toughest part of motherhood: The first two months. If you can survive this you will make it the next 18 years.

I know this because for the last two years my husband has been on night shift and been taking full time MBA classes. During these two years I found out that I was pregnant with our second child. She's now just over a year old. We've also lived through my son's first emergency room visit (9 stitches to repair the corner of his mouth), intense fear of all unexplained noises, and aggressive behavior. We have survived! AND I am still learning that everyday requires a good attitude and elbow grease.

My biggest advice for survival is get a shower every day. Even a ten minute rinse off is enough to make you feel human. Set a timer when your husband gives you that time, then you will still have time to wash a few bottles and prepare for your day. You will feel so much better if you use even a tiny bit of that time to pamper yourself.

Use a timer for other things. Pace yourself. Clean for 15 minutes at the beginning of each nap, then take a power nap.

Also, i just found a website that I love the ideas about keeping up with the house. Try the baby steps first and then modify the ideas to fit your house and family. Flylady.net is great for stepping you slowly through using timers and getting organized. I know a few of her baby steps would really help you with a few of your specific complaints (bottles, shower, etc).

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C.T.

answers from Dallas on

Your husband may work 40 hours a week, but it sounds as if you work 24/7. Both parents should take equal responsibility for a child when they are at home. You are working while he is at work, too. Then, when he gets home, he just wants to get some sleep and not help out at all! He needs to shape up and take on his share of the responsibility. My husband always says that he can't understand why a father wouldn't want to do their share. It is hard work, but it is totally worth it in the end because you have an unbreakable bond that lasts a lifetime. Just playing with the baby for an hour or 2 a day doesn't cut it and it isn't fair to you either. You need to have a talk with your husband before resentment ruins your relationship. I'll say a prayer for you. Congratulations on your new baby!!

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S.L.

answers from Dallas on

1. yes, you need "me" time if only to shower and maybe check email or call someone. sanity is important.

2. the house can wait. sleep now.

3. he should help on his days off, yet also get time off. maybe on one of the days off, he disappears for the morning, then he watches the baby while you disappear for the afternoon. and by disapearring it can mean for a nap or cheap pedicure or a trip the grocery store by yourself or for a cup of coffee....whatever!

4. please do date times! find a sitter that you trust and go out as a couple and enjoy each other. it helps when you'd rather throw a dish at him because you are cooking yet another meal and he's sleeping during lunch time madness.

5. yes, time passes quickly, but it doesn't mean you should let him off the hook either. he's a parent 24/7 too, even if he works.

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A.

answers from Dallas on

My first answer is TAKE A NAP for that hour and a half in the morning. No matter what else has to be done, you should enjoy some sleep first. That will help you take the edge off some, and maybe even prevent some of harshness towards your husband. I do disagree though with you making him do the majority of the work on his days off. That said, however, you obviously need his help too, so some compromise is needed. Maybe what he could do that would help you more could be the chores like bottle washing. Honestly, she is 7 weeks old, so he should be able to wash the bottles and get the baby ready for the day while you are asleep. I have a 2 week old newborn, as well as a 2 yr old, 3 yr old, 6 and 9 yr old, and I can assure you that you can find a way to get it all done!! Is she not still sleeping a good bit of the day? Grab a shower, even if you feel like you have to take her in the bathroom with you, while she is sleeping. Set up a routine for yourself, and it may help too..like when you will do specific things. Mondays you do bathrooms, Tuesdays..mop..even down to when you will wash bottles, cook food etc. You are still new at this, but someday, I promise you will wish you had the kind of time you have now. And, for sure, get outof the house and go hang out with some other mom friends..sometimes that is all it takes!! Good luck ~A.~

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P.C.

answers from Dallas on

Sounds like my husband has the same schedule as yours. I too was left alone to care for my TWIN girls at night and during the day since he had to get his rest. We had no family to rely on! We did it all alone. I was severly sleep deprived and breastfeeding:O My twins are 18 months now. It has not been easy but he is very helpful. I quit teaching to stay at home with my girls and I cannot complain. As much as i hate that he works at night, it has allowed me to stay home. It will get easier...trust me!

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S.P.

answers from Dallas on

Do you have a bouncy seat or swing while you take a shower or do laundry? You need to utilize those things so you can function. Then you can also use a sling or a baby born to have your hands free while you are doing stuff around the house. You can't let her consume every minute so you don't feel like you can get anything done. You need to sleep when she sleeps... Your husband needs to share- you are not taking advantage of him but the first few months are consuming. Enjoy her but take advantage of the nap times.

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D.C.

answers from Dallas on

When my son was 7 weeks old, I felt totally overwhelmed with him and some other family issues going on in my life. At the time I didn't realize that I was dealing with mild post-partum depression. But now I see that I was! We all think we are going to be Super-Mom and take on the world, but then reality hits. Your husband should continue to help you, but you are asking a little too much of him. Let the chores go!! They will still be there in a couple of weeks or months, but this time in your baby's life will have gone-by already. So take the time to enjoy it. I felt guilty if I tried to take a quick nap or shower while my son was sleeping but then I realized that the best Mom was a happy refreshed Mom. It's not a competition between you and your husband. Don't keep tabs on how many diapers you have changed or how many bottles you have washed...it will drive you crazy!! I know because I was in the same boat. You are both working parents, he works outside of the home and you work in the home. When you are both home, share the duties. But most of all, love your beautiful daughter and loving husband!!!!!

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L.D.

answers from Dallas on

T.,
Welcome to motherhood! It isn't easy and it won't be for the next few years. I never dumped my kids on my husband they way you describe your situation. Your husband works to support you all and you shouldn't be so demanding of him on his couple of days off. You are the mom. Be reasonable for the sake of your marriage. Good luck.

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W.R.

answers from Dallas on

T.,

I think you will get a huge variety of responses, so I'll keep my comment short. Right now, your sweet baby is very needy and demanding, so of course you are exhausted. Please remember, she won't always be this way, gradually you will find more balance in your life. I would suggest that on the 3 days your husband is off, you try to share responsibility for the baby. See this as true family time with a give and take. Maybe you could arrange to meet a friend for lunch or just take a long nap on one or two of those days, but other than that remain involved in the day-to-day care of your baby even when your husband is home. You are very fortunate to have a husband who can provide for his family and you are able to stay home with your baby during this season of your life. Pray for a grateful heart, and focus on the blessings in your life. One day soon, you will get to sleep again!!! It would certainly be helpful to have a friend to talk to since you are carrying so much stress in your life related to illnesses and death in your family, so reach out to someone and decompress.

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A.G.

answers from Dallas on

Dear T.,
This is a hard time, but I promise it is only a season. It WILL get better and easier. You are so exhausted and have so much else going on besides a new baby. I understand that too-- my dad passed away from cancer when my second was 3 months old, and my girls are just 17 months apart. It sounds like your husband really is helping you as much as he can. He must be tired too, as I am sure that even though he is sleeping during the day his sleep is not a regular good sleep when he hears the baby crying. Do you have any friends or relatives that are able to help you? Maybe bring over a meal, or come stay with the baby for an hour so you can rest? I would recommend that you let the chores go as much as possible-- eat on paper plates and do some laundry, but don't worry about the rest. Enjoy your baby and rest when you can so that you are able to enjoy her. When you are feeling resentful at 3 AM, I suggest that you try to really think about all of the things you love about your husband. If you have faith in God then pray and thank God for him-- that he has a good job that provides for you and your baby so that you can be home with her during this time, all the things you love about him. It will get better-- I promise!
Sending you hugs and wishes for rest,
A.

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J.B.

answers from Dallas on

You have gotten some very good advice. Mine is no different, so I'm only writing to let you know that adjusting to life with a newborn is very hard. I was tired and hormonal while my body got used to not being pregnant. My husband and I fought more than during my son's first few months than we ever had. I really think it had to do with sleep exhaustion.

I completely agree with the suggestions to sleep when the baby sleeps!!! My mood changed completely once I was getting the rest I needed.

I, too, would take the bouncer seat into the bathroom and put it in front of the shower while I showered. I could see my son and he could see me. There were no problems for me to get my daily shower. My mood sours quickly if I can't do that each day, too. As he got older, the Baby Einstein Videos/DVDs were a blessing! It was 30 minutes worth of fun for him and free time for me. I don't know if you've got a sling or a baby carrier. You might try one of those at home while you do some things around the house, but my babies were generally content to be anywhere as long as we could see each other. Maybe you could see if your husband would do the morning feedings for you on his days off so that you could get a little extra sleep. Then you might feel rested enough to pitch in and help out more on those days.

Trying to divide the chores is hard to do. Something that helps me around the holidays when we entertain both sides of families, is that I put a list on a wipe off board on the fridge with everything that needs to be done. House work, picking linens for the tables, cooking, shopping, kids and school projects. My husband will see it and pick something off of the list and do it. We have common goals to get the house ready for holiday guests (just like you two do with raising a newborn). Maybe if your husband doesn't feel punished and realizes that each day is a long list of things to do, he'll jump in and help willingly. It sounds like he's good about that. Even if he does four things on the list of twenty, be glad that he did some. The less pressure he feels from you, the more he might contribute.

Good luck and enjoy that sweet baby girl. She's only this little once.

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E.S.

answers from Dallas on

First off, I'm sorry you've got so much stress on top of having a new baby, I know that's hard. My daughter is nine months old, so I remember those early days, and it will get better. About your husband, keep in mind he is working hard too. I know it's hard on you, you feel like 24/7 you're running a marathon, but he feels the same way because he works all night and when he has days off to rest he's the one running the baby marathon. I completely understand your resent though, not telling you that what you feel is wrong, just saying he probably feels the same.

About a solution, have you tried to take naps with your daughter? I know that doesn't sound like much, but a half-hour curled up with your baby sleeping nearby can do wonders! Remember I've been there and done it too. Second, don't try to do everything while your husband's gone. On the days he's not there, just do whatever you have to to get by. When he's there, do the housework, wash the bottles, etc. That way he feels like your helping, because you're cleaning up, but the rest of the time your not dying from your marathon running.

Do you have a bouncy seat or something like that? I used to put my baby in a bouncy seat on the bathroom floor and take a shower, she would usually sleep, and sometimes play, but the warm air would relax her also. So I would get a shower, and a lot of times that shower would be the reason I felt good enough to do everything else.

I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. It will get better and easier. You'll find yourself, your baby and your husband in a better routine as she gets older and you CAN be in a routine. Try not to stress and enjoy these baby days as much as possible.

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K.P.

answers from Dallas on

Yes, you are being unfair to your husband. It sounds like he works hard 4 days (at least 10 hours) and then has to work all day on his 3 days off so you can get 3 days off. Instead of him taking over completely, maybe have him take over for 4-6 hours so you can get a good sleep and shower. Set up a schedule that works for him so he can get his sleep and rest on his days off as well. I'm sure he wants to spend time with his daughter, but he also needs some rest as well.

Learn to nap when your daughter naps. My daughter wouldn't nap in her crib, so I would lay down and we would nap together. I would put her in her swing and take a shower. I learned to feed her with one hand and eat with the other. You will get into a groove. Also, you will learn to let her cry for a few minutes so you can finish doing stuff. I know when my daughter was first born I would drop everything as soon as she started to cry.

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T.A.

answers from Dallas on

My suggestions are just like everyone else says: Sleep when the baby sleeps. Take the phone off the hook and put a sign on the front door that reads DO NOT DISTURB - Baby Sleeping. I still do this sometimes when I am super exhausted when my three year old daughter takes a nap.

Put your cell phone on vibrate if you have one and just REST even if you do not sleep!

If you do not have a bouncy seat then ask if someone has one you could borrow or look on Craigslist for one. I put my daughter in it and took her in the bathroom while I took a shower. I let her lay on a blanket with some toys when she got older while I did household stuff and I also did a lot of things at night while she slept especially since I took naps during the day.

I agree with all the others who say establish a routine.

She would wake up and I would check her diaper and change her and then feed her. She napped from 10 to 12 and I would eat a quick breakfast and then take a nap. She would wake up and I would change her diaper and feed her. I would eat a sandwich or something quick and easy. She napped again from 1 to 3 p.m. and I took another nap. She would wake up again and I changed her and fed her then I would take her to the bathroom with me and take a shower. Then I put her in the swing or on a blanket and would do other things around the house. Around 6:00 or 6:30 p.m., we ate dinner and then I would give her a bath, feed her and check her diaper then she usually fell asleep for the night. She started sleeping through the night at 2 months. If I felt like doing something then I would fold laundry or load or unload the dishwasher.

As your baby gets older then the routine gets easier and easier.

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S.M.

answers from Dallas on

New babies are very demanding and it's hard to get into a routine with one, but that is what you must do. There is no reason you should not be able to take a shower on a daily basis with a new baby around. I think you are very lucky that your hubby is off 3 days a week and it willing/able to completely take care of her, but it sounds like it's not a deal you guys made together, it is a form of "look what I have to do, so you do it now" vindictive (sp) behavior. Just to give you some perspective, I am a full time stay at home mom now, but when my first 2 were little, I worked 1/2 day. My hubby NEVER woke at night with the kids, he just didn't hear them, if I tried to wake him to take care of them at night, he REALLY didn't wake up (it look many years to realize this was not an act, but he truly sleeps that hard). Anyway, I took complete care of them day & night with him only doing minor things when I asked, he never took complete control if I was also home. Even now, I am a full time stay at home mom, so I feel like I need to let him sleep during the night so he can be fresh for work, so I do all nighttime stuff, and then when it's time to put the baby to bed, I do that too... I guess what I'm getting at is MOST mom's (stay at home ones) do 100% off the baby stuff with hubby just helping when he can. I don't think most hand the baby off for dad to do 100% when he is off regardless of if he's off on Sat/Sun or if he's off during the week. So, here is my suggestion. Pray that you will not have a spiteful heart so that you can get hubby's help without being spiteful. Then, work on a schedule for the baby. See if you can plan your day around her naps and/or feedings. What worked for me was to take a shower at night after the baby went to bed, but if that doesn't work for you, then put the baby in the infant seat outside the shower and sing/talk to her while you shower. I used to clean house with the baby in the infant seat and just move her from room to room so I could get things done. Maybe you feel like you have to be holding her and/or entertaining her while she's awake, but it's ok for her to just look at the fan, or mobile in her bed. Finally, maybe you are putting too much pressure on yourself to get things done. It's ok if the laundry isn't done every day, it's ok if you haven't swept/mopped as often as you used to, you have another priority now. Tell hubby how you feel, be honest and say you think you have been being a bit spitefull, but you feel overwhelmed. Maybe he could help do laundry on his day off, maybe he could go to the grocery store with the baby on his day off so you could have 1 less chore and a break. Oh, and you've got to sleep when the baby sleeps. I ALWAYS had a hard time with this, but if you are feeling this overwhelmed, you are probably very sleep deprived, and the only way to fix that is to try to lay down when the baby naps.

Good luck! I can also tell you that it gets better (usually around 3 months), you'll get more sleep and you'll be able to get more done. Can you go get some prepared meals so you don't have to cook? That may help too.

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L.T.

answers from Abilene on

Everything you are feeling is quite normal for having a 7-week-old baby! Time will solve a lot of your "problems" as you learn how to get the necessities done while your baby is quiet and happy. You are fortunate that your husband works so you can stay home with her and that he is willing to help -- make sure he knows how much you appreciate him working and allowing you to have a little time to yourself on his days off.

See if you can find a Mothers of Pre-schoolers (MOPS) group nearby; go to MOPS.org and search for a local group. These groups give moms a chance to meet, sit around and visit, and learn from each other and mentors while their children are well cared-for. It's been a true lifeline for many young mothers.

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M.G.

answers from Dallas on

T.,

I also thought you were going to A) take a nap! Nap whenever Hope will let you! I understand your problem. Your husband MUST take care of Hope the majority of the time on his days off. If he resents doing that, then he isn't ready to be a dad. Your husband needs to grow up and take on the responsibility of caring for his own baby. You are exhausted and need help. All your husband has to do is go to work. You have a 24/7 job that deprives you of your sleep. Your husband has it much easier than you do right now. When Hope starts sleeping through the night, you will see the light at the end of the tunnel, but until that happens (probably in 3 months), your huband must step up to the plate and care for Hope most of the time on his days off. He needs to know that a baby changes EVERYTHING - your lives are changed forever. He MUST care for Hope on his days off and give you a break, or you will literally collapse. Sleep deprivation is the WORST. Please have him read this. Best of luck, and hang in there for the next few months b/c it WILL get better!

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E.C.

answers from Dallas on

First of all do not feel guilty for the way you feel. I think all mothers feel overwhelmed; and a little human being can challenge your emotions. My husband and I go through this all of the time; however, I work full time as well so our situation is a bit different. I work all week and I am 100% responsible for the kids most of the time including weekends. My husband is a hard worker not just for his employer but at home. He does the dishes, laundry, etc. However, there is something about caring for the kids that it just does not come natural for him and he has expressed to me that I do it better. So my point is maybe he can help you in other ways and maybe he can take care of your precious baby for a 2-3 hour period during his days off to give you a break. Maybe you can also hire someone - like a 12 year-old for a few bucks an hour to help you around the house just to take some of the pressure off. That way you are not really paying for a babysitter which is expensive; however, you have a little help to allow you to take some of the pressure off. It is amazing how much pressure is lifted to just have an extra set of arms! Anyway, good luck!

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H.T.

answers from Dallas on

I thought you were going to pick A) take a nap LOL.. that's what you should do!!

Yes he should help you when he is off... When are your days off?? Doesn't sound like you have any.. This is just a REALLY hard time right now. Sleep deprivation will make you crazy!!!

Stop worrying about your house.. Seriously eating sleeping bathing and being sane is far more important then a clean house.

I am telling you, you are acting that way because your body and brain needs rest. Sleep,, let your husband help and remind him that taking care of HIS OWN baby is not a punishment it is a gift!

Good luck and take a nap!

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J.N.

answers from Lubbock on

Dear T.:

I know that you are exhausted. I am sure that your husband is too!

I agree with the advice to sleep when your baby sleeps. You must figure out a way to take care of yourself! You can put your baby in a carrier in the bathroom while you take a shower. You must eat. If your baby cries when she is put down, so be it. Just like when you are on an airplane and you put on your oxygen mask first, if you are not well, you will NOT be able to take care of your child. Since your husband is willing to take over for an hour and a half each day, you can get a lot done in that little bit of time. The hardest part is getting used to this new normal when life is so demanding.

When your husband is home, you need to share parenting duties. He needs a break too. I can tell you that things will get better. When my boys were little, I did virtually everything. I became so exhausted that I grew ill - so ill that my life was in danger. I couldn't even get my husband to watch the boys long enough for me to get a haircut and he kept throwing out my "old" food when he finished eating while I fed the baby. Thankfully, now that the boys are older, my husband actually does more with them than I do.

This is a time that your family needs to take care of each other! Watch your husband for signs of exhaustion and take over for him if needed, even when it is his turn. Let him know how wonderful he is and that you appreciate his help.

Good luck!
Jen

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S.M.

answers from Dallas on

T., you already know that you are being more than a little harsh and unreasonable toward your husband. It sounds like you had your child before you were really ready for the responsibilities that go with being a mother. Yep, newborns are a lot of work and you won't get much sleep at first, that goes with the territory. However, babies do sleep each day so come on now, you can work in a 5 or 10 minute shower and eat a sandwich or a bowl of cereal. You can even nap when the baby naps and most chores can wait. You've received some excellent advice from some of the other mothers on this site so do yourself, your baby and your husband a favor and take it. It is not fair for your husband to have to work outside the home four days a week and be totally responsible for the baby for the other three days while you get three days "off" each week. If you went to work somewhere else on those three days then it might be fair but you don't. Why should he have to work seven days a week and you only four? More than all that, I wonder how you can just separate yourself from your little daughter for three days except for "occasionally" holding, feeding or changing her. It sounds like you might also resent your baby. Grow up and start acting like a mature adult. Accept your responsibility and be a full-time mother to your baby every day of the week before your husband grows to resent both you and your daughter. I'd also try treating him with the respect and kindness he deserves before you totally mess up your relationship. Believe me, there are lots and lots of women who would jump at the chance to be in your shoes.

T.F.

answers from Dallas on

I am by far no expert on this..... my daughter is 14 now.

I also know it is HARD to adjust to a new baby. It is a HUGE blessing but also puts a hardship emotionally on you and your hubby as well. I had NO family around and I had a nurse come in for the first couple weeks to help me. It was a GREAT help for us.

I will say the 1 thing hubby and I agreed on when I was pregnant was to never stop our date night. To this day....we have date night once a week or more if possible. It is imperative to keep your relationship with hubby thriving....

My husband works a LOT, from home or from airport, hotel, etc 3-4 nights a week since our daughter was born in 1994. He specifically makes his schedule according to what our daughter's schedule is as far as parent meetings, shows, etc. I maintain the home (inside).

As far as getting a shower, eating, etc. USE the bouncy seat to get a shower, use the swing to make dinner, in time let her play on the floor with toys while you do your "chores".

Nothing is "wrong" with you. It simply sounds like you need to figure out a routine and "system" of maintaining your routine. There is no reason you go all day with no shower or no food due to your baby. Your baby needs down time and you take advantage of that.....naptime is a biggie for new moms.

My hubby has always been the provider for our family. I would and never have thought of putting our daughter off on him to take 3 days for myself. Your hubby is working hard...Treasure these days.... they go by SO fast. My "baby" is 14 now and I see how fast the time has flown by I think back and recall so many times that I was doing chores etc when she was right there with me. I had a specific cabinet in my kitchen that was "hers" whenever I was working in the kitchen, when I did dishes, etc, she was in her bouncy or swing so we made eye contact while I worked.

You can do this.........right now is the toughest adjustment. Hang in there.

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R.E.

answers from Dallas on

It's only been 7 weeks since the baby is born, and it sounds like you are still adjusting. Adding the first child to the family for us was the biggest shock! You go from being able to come and go and do as you please to being on call to someone else 24/7. It sounds like you both need to work out a schedule of some sorts you can both live with. Use your time wisely. When the baby is napping, you nap. I put my baby in the car seat with some toys hanging from it and set it right outside the shower while I took my shower. While you make bottles, put the baby in a bouncer or the high chair (mine had a seat that reclined) and talk to her while you do that. Or, put her in a pack and play with toys and let her amuse herself for a bit while you catch a bite to eat. It's good for her to get some alone time too. I remember taking naps in the recliner while I snuggled my baby too. My husband and I also worked out a schedule for nights that worked well for us. I'm a night person, so I'd stay up until 11 and do the last feeding of the night while he went to bed early, and since he was a morning person, he could feed the baby the early morning feeding and I could sleep until he had to leave for work. I'd generally do the middle of the night ones Sunday-Thursday and he'd do Friday and Saturday. Not sure how it would work since your husband works nights though, but I'm sure you could come up with something to that effect. We also played on our strengths with the baby care too. He preferred feeding and I preferred the bathing. I totally remember everything you're going through and how stressful it all seems. When I had my second son, I'd think back to how frazzled I felt all the time with a newborn when my first was a baby, and laugh at myself. With baby #2, the newborn was the breeze! You just need to find your groove! Maybe on his days off don't give him 100% baby duty. Split it down the middle. He gets one night of feedings while you get an uninterrupted night's sleep and you do the same for him.

And no, I don't think it's crazy to expect him to help with the baby on his days off. The way I see it . . . my husband has his job he goes to. My job is doing the housework and running the house. I don't do his job, and I don't ask him to do the majority of the housework (he's responsible the cars, yard, and trash though). However, we are BOTH parents, so when we are there with the kids, it's 50/50 all the way! Anyway, my advice to you is to sit down with your husband and spell everything out that needs to be done and decide together who will be responsible for what. For example, you could cook dinner, while he feeds the baby, then you give the baby a bath while he cleans up dinner.

I sincerely wish you good luck! These times will pass and one day you'll look back on it and realize it really wasn't that bad after all. Having a baby, especially the first one, is probably the biggest transition I remember in my life, but also probably the best one!

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K.S.

answers from Dallas on

I think you should get your baby and yourself on a schedule. This will require purposefully keeping your baby awake sometimes. The book Baby Wise can help you know where you can be with a schedule.
Sounds to me that you and your husband need a weekly date. Do you have a friend or family that could watch Hope for a few hours on a planned day of the week? This is a difficult time (infant stage) in marriages, and you want your marriage to remain strong.
Plan a time with him watching the baby, that you can have to yourself everyday, for maybe 1 hour.
Your baby can sit in a bouncy seat while you take a shower (even if she cries.) You should make showering a daily priority, as it will help you feel sooo much better.
I think handing your baby to your husband when he gets home is fine, BUT I think you should ask daily if he has anything he needs to get done for himself or the house. Then be sure to give him attention throughout the day. It's probably a good idea to work together some (even if it's for 1 hour) with the baby during the day, even if he is willing and able to take care of things.
I too feel guilty at times for dumping the responsibility of children onto my husband, but I remind myself...I love the kids, but I also love a break from the kids.
If you think you might be having some depression, talk to your doctor or health retail store professional.
You are not alone. I think many of us feel the way you are feeling...just don't forget to make a priority loving communication with your husband into each day. (could be a hug, verbalize appreciation, do something to serve him (meal, iron, car to get an oil change,) small gift for him if he's into gifts, or something he would consider quality time.)
Take care!

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J.D.

answers from Dallas on

First of all the first two to three months can be a hard time. But, I have good news for you. You are getting closer to when your daughter can sleep all through the night. There is "hope" that Hope will soon change and eveeryone will feel better.

"Think" about getting her on a schedule soon. My babies (3) were all sleeping through the night by 10 weeks. Babywise is a good book to follow to help her get started to sleep through the night.

Concerning your family. I don't think you are going to be able to help them right now. You can call them, encourage them, listen to them and pray for them. Be at peace that everything will be ok.

Your husband is very hands on. You need to let him know genuinely how much you appreciate him helping. He probably feels the same way you do, he never gets time off. Make it a team effort. PS Your hormones are going wild and our minds can make us think things are worse than they are. It will get better now go give your hubby a hug and work together.

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L.B.

answers from Amarillo on

This is a part of the what to expect manual that isn't in there. The way both of you feel is normal. He probab;y feels displaced. Yes he should help with the baby, but he also needs for you to "hold it togeather"- easier said then done on 2 hours of sleep. There is a reason you are told to sleep when the baby is sleeping! Decide with your husband what things can be let go of temporarily- can use disposable (if your worried they have eco friendly) dishes for a time. Since she's not crawling does it matter if the vaccuming and dusting get done. If there aren't health issues your baby is old enough to go with you to a friends house, womans group something. If your family is not to ill from treatments maybe they could keep her for an hour and half while you rest, spend time with your spouse, bathe. He may also frankly is probably wondering when marital relations are going to return to normal an open honest talk will be awkward but may help ease the tension. Everybody talks about how the woman needs to feel attractive after a baby, but few talk about the changes men go through. There is much more riding on his job, and most often if they matter to their wives anymore. They need to be told same as you. This does not let him off the hook for helping you, but how you approach him will make the difference.

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C.H.

answers from Dallas on

From what I'm hearing, you get three days off to do most anything you choose. Meanwhile, he gets zip. Parenthood is exhausting.

+ Consider asking your husband to do every other night's feeding -- or the night feedings on the weekends. (If nursing, you can make an extra bottle for him.) But he needs some time off from those 3 day's he's off from work.

+ Make sure that otherwise you're getting quality sleep.

+ Are you understandably depressed from your family's health that cause you to be even more tired all the time.

+ Have you had a physical to make sure that your health is good? Low hormones? Low thyroid? (Also, if your father and sister have cancer, you could be at risk at some point as well.)

+ Do you have a trusted relative or any room in the budget for someone to come in as either a Mommie's Helper or to let you -- or both of you -- get away regularly?

Your husband sounds like he is more helpful than most. Don't be harsh with him. You certainly don't want to end up a single mom having 100% of those responsibilities plus earning an income too. Make some changes and put your marriage and health on a very high priority.

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V.T.

answers from Dallas on

i just wanted to let you know that we have all been there! this is a tough time and we have all wished that our husband would help us more in this time. but i also want to reasure you that this time will pass! i know it's hard to think about right now but everyday it gets easier.
you also learn to handle more. i remember it being so hard to just get my first baby dressed for the day. but things will start to come easier for you and you will find time during the day to take a nap or clean the bottles, and don't be scared to put your baby in her swing while you take a shower. she will be perfectly safe and if she cries a little and you don't hear her that's ok too. it will be good for her lungs. : )
but as far as your husband i know it is importnant for him to help out as much as he can and share these new responsibilities with you, but at the same time it is also important for his sanity to have some time off. just vegging can be something that men really need to recoup from a hard week of work. maybe you can work out a schedule where he takes one full day and then you share the responsiblities the other two days. (one gets mornings, one gets afternoons or something like that) without his time off your husband may be just as likley to break as you are.
you might also need to remind yourself and your husband that you are very emotional after having a baby. it may take you a while to feel like yourself again. it's takes a huge tole on your body and your emotions. but be patient and life will come around to (a new kind of) normal again.

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M.A.

answers from Dallas on

I am so sorry about you grandmother, sister and father. On top of being overwhelmed I sure this is hard for you too. Everyone has lots of great advice here. I just want to add that you should try to get out the house some. Join a mother's group, go for walks or anything else that you are interested in doing. Having a support group even if it is only one other mother is a great thing to have. Also, it is possible to integrate all your daily needs into the day with a baby. I have twins and it wasn't easy, but it is possible. You can do it! Have faith in yourself. Give your hubby the same break you need too because he needs time too. My hubby and I try to take turns leaving the house alone to shop, run errands or hang out with friends.

Hang in there! You will find a balance.

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K.M.

answers from Dallas on

Just curious, does your baby nap during the day where you could do some of these things while she is napping? Surely, she does sleep most of the time right now or at least two naps a day. Also, have you tried putting her in a swing while you put a load of laundry on and/or make her bottles, etc. As a consolation, this time will pass quickly so, I think the ideal thing for you to do is sit down with your husband and come up with a compromise. Work out a schedule that works best for the both of you. DON'T let this ruin your marriage. I worked the first four years of my daughters life (taught school) and we worked together taking care of her but, I had the majority of responsibility since I was home during the summer and earlier during the day. My concern is that you both are going to start resenting the other and that is not healthy for any of you, including her. I pray the best for you and you have received so much good advice. I know it is difficult to organize your day with a new born, but in very short amount of time, things will change and it will get easier. You also may want to consider a "Mother's Day Out" program at your local church when she is old enough. That will give you a few hours one of two days a week to get things done and some time for yourself. Also, give yourself some time for your hormones to get back on track and don't get stressed out and exhausted.

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C.L.

answers from Dallas on

Wow! You've gotten a huge response to your question! I think this is something every mom can relate to which is why we all have advice on this. First off let me start by encouraging you that things WILL get easier. The first six months to a year are so time consuming and you do feel overwhelmed with how much work such a tiny baby can be. Your baby is still so young so please try to remind yourself in those moments when you are totally sleep deprived and worn out that your baby will be sleeping through the night soon. Once that happens then you'll be getting the proper amount of rest too and the days won't seem near as difficult. Also keep in mind that your hormones are still on a roller coaster ride right now and it will take some time for things calm down. Babies grow so quickly and before you know it you'll be able to put the baby in a bouncy seat or a swing while you take a shower. It's amazing how much a shower can change your outlook sometimes.
All that being said, I do feel that both parents should work together as partners in taking care of the baby. It is so hard to find the right balance and not feel resentful towards one another. Maybe instead of you doing everything for 4 days and then him doing everything for 3 days you could try splitting up the responsibilities on a daily basis. Everyone needs some downtime in order to fully enjoy being a parent. Maybe if you can agree for example on you giving the baby a bath each day while your husband washes the bottles and having him give her two feedings a day while you are responsible for the rest....whatever works best. Also, do the same with some of the household chores. Have a discussion about which things you are better at doing (maybe cooking and laundry) and which things he is better at doing (maybe doing dishes and grocery shopping) and try to divide up some of that responsibility. I think everyone will be much happier if you both participate in the childcare on a daily basis rather than one person having all the responsibility for several days in a row. Good luck to you and your family!

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A.S.

answers from Lubbock on

FIrst of all you sound like you feel guilty for taking a break.Dint!Being a mom is a hard job!Your husband probably like every other husband in the world thinks since you stay home you have it easy while he is off working.they all seem to think we sit at home and put our feet up and watch tv all day.Husbands will be husbands.Pass your baby off to him so you can take a break that is fine he is her daddy.But expect to hear this is my day of yada yada yada!My husband is a great father and very good at coming home and playing with our son and spending time with im but he just doesnt get it.Most husbands dont so you have to choose to listen to the grumbling and get your most deserved break or to not have to grumbling and not have a break.That at least seems to be the case for me.Dont get me wrong my husband is great but men can be retarded when it comes to seeing the challenges of being a parent!Good luck you are not alone!

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S.W.

answers from Dallas on

Hi T..

Don't be so hard on yourself or your husband. Hope is very new and it is a big adjustment. You will all three fall into a schedule soon and you will be able to get more sleep. It does get easier. As far as "dumping" the baby off on your husband during his days off is concerned, I belive that it is easier when you work as a team. Don't forget that he is working while you are at home (which I know is hard work as well). My question to you is, What are you doing on the three days that your husband takes care of her? Do you get three days a week off? That means that your husband is getting no days off. You do need a break sometimes, but if you work as a team, you are building a strong family foundation for your daughter. Maybe you should take one of those days to do something for yourself, but use the other two days as family time and enjoy it. Don't look at it as a job. And remember, it is an adjustment so it does take time. Your daughter will grow up so fast, and you will soon miss those nights at 3 AM feeding and snuggling with her. Try to enjoy it.

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