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Overwhelmed (kind of long)

Ok, I have two kids ages 4 and 1.  I love my second child with all my heart, but I must admit, baby #2 is really tough. I work a strenuous full-time, Monday-Friday, 9 hours a day job. 

Its too much and I feel like I can't handle it sometimes. I am also attempting to run a small business out of my home office p/t. Or shall I say in my spare time, which is never.  I really need a reprieve. My husband is great, and helps out where needed, but he also has a busy schedule with work, community activities, etc.  And we all know whether you have a mate or not, the majority of the cooking, cleaning, bathing, laundry, grocery shopping, lunch packing, bottle making, & feeding is on the mother. I hate to admit this, but I am OVERWHELMED.  I am TIRED. I need some rest.  I feel like my full-time gig is taking up all of my time. By the time I get home, get dinner ready for the hubby, feed the two kids, get ready for the next day, and put the kids to bed, its 10:00PM and I am kaput. This leaves little or no time for myself or to run and expand my business. And the time that I do manage to find, I am so tired that if there is a bed in site, then I'm in it!!! 

I would love to quit work or work p/t, but we just can't afford it. I make a pretty good salary and with one income, I am afraid that we might suffer financially.  My son is getting ready to start private school and there is still the issue of my daughter's daycare along with a mortgage and car payment.  Because I haven't had the time to dedicate to my business, it has generated little income. 
 

I need some serious advice or encouragement, I can't be the only one in this situation.

Signed,
Overwhelmed and Frustrated

«1

Re: Overwhelmed (kind of long)

  • And we all know whether you have a mate or not, the majority of the cooking, cleaning, bathing, laundry, grocery shopping, lunch packing, bottle making, & feeding is on the mother.

    Why do you assume this to be the case?  If you think that this is just how it is, then sure, that's how it will be - but there is NO REASON it has to be like this.  Talk to your DH.  Show him this post.  TELL HIM you need more help.  You can't do it all.  These are his children too - he needs to step up and help out.  And you need to TELL HIM to step up and help out. 

     

    "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
    ~Benjamin Franklin

    Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
    DS dx with celiac disease 5/28/10

  • "My husband is great, and helps out where needed, but he also has a busy schedule with work, community activities, etc"

     How come your DH has time for community activities when you are dead on your feet. He shouldnt be "helping out" but taking a full share, he is part of the problem.

    Also have you thought that you might be suffering from post partum depression?, it doesnt always happen immediately.

     And while private school is nice, I think your son would appreciate a mom who wasnt on the edge more than a private education.

  • I sympathize with how overwhelmed you sound.  But I ask you to re-read your post.  Out of all the many things on your plate, what you are complaining about is your second child.  As a parent you need to prioritize your life.  Maybe it is time to eliminate some of the other things for a few years until you are in a better place.  And so that your child doesn't grow up feeling like an intrusion.

    Put your small business aside for 2 yrs.  Really.  It isn't going anywhere now, so just put it on hold till you have more time.  Your DH needs to look at his "community activities, etc" and eliminate some of those things. 

    Then you need to examine how much you are doing of the child/house/food stuff.  Why isn't your DH stepping up to the plate more?  Give him more to do.  Let go of more stuff.  And where you can afford to hire it to be done, spend the money to gain some time back in your life (like housecleaning, yard work, grocery delivery--Giant Peapod for $7, etc). 

    Also, rethink your spending.  Car payment?  Private school?  Maybe if you didn't have these expenses and many others you don't think about, you could consider part time work. 

    You and your DH really need to reexamine your lives, how you spend your time and your money, and make a new plan.

  • I agree with the PP that your DH needs to cut out a lot of his activities and help more around the house.

    Don't blame baby #2 for this - blame your DH.

    Also, you may seriously need to rethink the 2nd job. I get that you want to do that, but you may need to wait a year until the kids are a bit older (or however long) in order to do that.

    Skipping the private school might be an option. There is a Money Matters board on the Nest. They could review your budget and help you find ways to feel less financially stressed.

    Good luck.

    Hope is not a strategy.
  • Well, your DH doesn't "help" enough if you are this overwhelmed.  WHY is the majority of the feeding, laundry, diapers, etc. falling to you?

    He should not be "helping"... that is what you hire housekeepers and nannies for.  He should be PARENTING.

    I have to agree with the pps as well... why now for starting a business?  I would put that on hold for a while.

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • Ditto the others.

    The cooking, cleaning, child care, etc should not all fall on your shoulders.  Your husband needs to step up to the plate and do his fair share. 

    Send your kid to public school if you can't afford private school.

    Cut back on your second job and your husband's community activities.

     

  • I get the "busy schedule" and "community activities" things, and I don't doubt they're important to your husband, but right now at this season of your lives, you BOTH need to sacrifice and prioritize your family needs.  You can't be a good wife, a good mom, a good worker, if you're so strung out and overwhelmed that you can't function.

    I also heartily disagree with the proposition that the bulk of housework and childcare falls naturally to the mother.  DH and I hired a housekeeper to come in and do the heavy cleaning when we found out we were expecting #2, right about the time I went back to work full-time, but otherwise it's a fairly even split.  I always take DD to daycare and almost always pick her up, but that's because it's on my campus.  DH washes diapers, does laundry, cooks dinner, goes grocery shopping, takes care of the dog, picks up around the house, plays with DD and bathes her and puts her to bed just as much as I do the same things. 

    You just have too much on your plate right now.  Can you put the small business on hold for the time being?  Can your husband curtail his activities outside the home and pick up some of the slack?  Can you cut your lifestyle back so that you are living on one income and banking the other to give yourselves a financial cushion?

    "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." Lilypie Fourth Birthday tickers Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
  • I agree with everyone else. You and your DH need to reassess your priorities. He needs to step up and pitch in--by assuming that all the housework will "naturally" fall on the mother, you're giving him permission to slack off in that department. You both need to set aside some of your work (your p/t small business, his community activities) and it sounds like you also need to reassess your financial situation. Do you need to send your son to private school? Can you cut back in other ways? And if your p/t job is bringing in little income but taking up your time, you need to set it aside for now. It also sounds like you might be suffering from postpartum depression, so you might want to visit your doctor to talk about that.

    It seems like you feel that you have to do it all, but when you stretch yourself too thin your relationship with your children and your husband will suffer. 

  • image EastCoastBride:

    And we all know whether you have a mate or not, the majority of the cooking, cleaning, bathing, laundry, grocery shopping, lunch packing, bottle making, & feeding is on the mother.

    Why do you assume this to be the case?  If you think that this is just how it is, then sure, that's how it will be - but there is NO REASON it has to be like this.  Talk to your DH.  Show him this post.  TELL HIM you need more help.  You can't do it all.  These are his children too - he needs to step up and help out.  And you need to TELL HIM to step up and help out. 

    This, bolded for emphasis.

    My H is more than willing to do any housework, but I have to ask him to do it.  Not because of some antiquated gender assignment, but because his standard of neatness is different than mine and he doesn't realize that (eg)  the laundry needs to be done until he's wearing his second pair of swim trunks.

    Have you asked your H to take any of the housework off your plate, or do you expect him to read your mind?

  • 1. Housework and child-raising is not solely a woman's responsibility. Your H lives there too and he did his share of the baby-creating.... therefore he should be carrying half of the weight. It's time that he cuts out his extra activities so he can be there for his family.

    2. Do you really need to send your son to private school? If it's a problem with the area, I can understand. Otherwise it sounds unnecessary.

    3. If your part-time job is not yielding any income, it's time to put it on the back burner. Take time to raise your kids and you can start the business up again in a few years.

    4. Don't take any of this out on your defenseless daughter. She didn't ask to be born and you cannot make her responsible for your irresponsibility. If you weren't ready for a second child, you shouldn't have had one. Don't make her take the blame for your unhappiness.

  • You are complaining about your child?  In all of this you really think that the blame falls on your second child creating too much stress in your life?  Well the easy solution would be to put the kid up for adoption.  Then you can do all the other things you have priotized in front of your family without the guilt. 

    Here are 5 solutions that would reduce the amount of stress in your life without putting the blame on your children.

    You have two jobs, one of them doesn't bring in much money at all.  Why not drop the second job? 

    You are afraid to suffer financially, well don't send your kid(s) to private school.  Public school is free, and it doesn't totally suck.

    You could quit your job and save on daycare, it would probably reduce the amount of stress in your life and give you the time to take care of more stuff around the house and re-connect with your husband.  (I agree that the husband should be doing his fair share around the house)

    You could sell your car and home to get something more affordable.  Then you don't have to worry about the mortgage and car payment.

     

  • Wow. Both of you need to drop some of your other commitments. Your first priority is to be good parents. You can't do that if you're constantly stressed out and/or never home.

    You need to talk to your DH about what commitments you can drop. I def agree that you need to put your business on hold for now. You can always pursue it later, when you have the time and energy. Your DH also needs to reassess his priorities and spend more time helping you out. It's great that he wants to give back to the community, but his first priority needs to be your family.

    "Keep on dreaming even if it breaks your heart."
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  • image Hoodlum90:

    I sympathize with how overwhelmed you sound.  But I ask you to re-read your post.  Out of all the many things on your plate, what you are complaining about is your second child.  As a parent you need to prioritize your life.  Maybe it is time to eliminate some of the other things for a few years until you are in a better place.  And so that your child doesn't grow up feeling like an intrusion.

    Put your small business aside for 2 yrs.  Really.  It isn't going anywhere now, so just put it on hold till you have more time.  Your DH needs to look at his "community activities, etc" and eliminate some of those things. 

    Then you need to examine how much you are doing of the child/house/food stuff.  Why isn't your DH stepping up to the plate more?  Give him more to do.  Let go of more stuff.  And where you can afford to hire it to be done, spend the money to gain some time back in your life (like housecleaning, yard work, grocery delivery--Giant Peapod for $7, etc). 

    Also, rethink your spending.  Car payment?  Private school?  Maybe if you didn't have these expenses and many others you don't think about, you could consider part time work. 

    You and your DH really need to reexamine your lives, how you spend your time and your money, and make a new plan.

    This.

  • I see your future as a divorce single mother of two.

    Sorry but you sound like me about two years ago. Except my STBXH added alcohol in the mix. Parenting is a two person job. This includes helping in ever aspect. No where does it state that the house and children are a womans job to solely take responsibility of. That is bullshit! Screw the community. Take care of your family first. And that is exactly how it would come out of my mouth.

    Dont you dare make this out to be a burden on your second child. That is not fair at all. You need to grow up take a look at what your real priorities  are. 

  • imoanimoan member
    10000 Comments Eighth Anniversary

    And we all know whether you have a mate or not, the majority of the cooking, cleaning, bathing, laundry, grocery shopping, lunch packing, bottle making, & feeding is on the mother

    This part of your post made me want to throw  up.  We all don't KNOW this... because it's not true or fair.  What kind of azz-backwards time warp do you live in?!  It took 2 to make those babies, so why is all the work falling on one person.  I am disgusted that in this day and age... a woman thinks it's alright to have to do all the work associated with the kids and the house. 

    You're doing a disservice to all women with this attitude.  Tell your husband to do his fair share.  He should know to do it on his own, but I digress.  If he refuses to help- well, then you know you have a major marital problem there. 

    image
    Currently Reading: Don Quixote by Miguel De Cervantes
  • H def does help out and when possible he tries to take 4-yr old with him to community activities to help me out. But it still a lot since my little one requires ALL of my attention.

    But I will def be talking to H about household chores, asking him not to wait until I ask for his help but to jump in and help everyday.  Maybe a posted weekly schedule of household chores will work. I hate to be so structured with DH, but in order for me to be sane, I might have to do this.  Nanny, maid -- don't think it is an affordable option, but then again...I will check out some prices

    The talk about him cutting back on extra curricular activities will be a bigger task since he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things. I also don't want him to be unhappy and feel like he can't do things because of me.  I have to get him to see that its for the greater good of the family. 

    On the fence about putting my business on hold since its my passion, but maybe I will re-think the approach. 

    I so wish it was, but public school is a no-go in my area. Not a bad place, but the public schools def do not meet our expectations.  Believe me, we've checked them out.

    genevievea...
    I love this comment....its so true.

    It seems like you feel that you have to do it all, but when you stretch yourself too thin your relationship with your children and your husband will suffer.

    Thanks all for the advice, its been very helpful. Would still love to quite my job and go f/t with the business.

    Aah maybe next year. lol
  • image sweetdisaster:

    Dont you dare make this out to be a burden on your second child. That is not fair at all. You need to grow up take a look at what your real priorities  are. 

    Yeah, I love how you're placing all the blame on a child that didn't ask to be born instead of on the two people who chose to create that child.

    By the time I get home, get dinner ready for the hubby, feed the two kids, get ready for the next day, and put the kids to bed, its 10:00PM and I am kaput.

    Why the hell can't your H fix dinner for himself and the kids? Have his arms been amputated? Why can't he put the kids to bed?

    But with one, we were able to at least juggle life, spend time together, go on dates nights, and have a little fun, I really miss spending time with my husband.

    Boo-hoo. You actually thought your lives wouldn't change at all when you added a completely helpless, dependent infant into the mix? Seriously?

    You chose to be parents, now BE PARENTS. It's not all about you anymore.

    fiizzlee = vag ** fiizzle = peen ** Babies shouldn't be born wit thangs ** **They're called first luddz fo' a reason -- mo' is supposed ta come after. Yo Ass don't git a medal fo' marryin yo' prom date. Unless yo ass is imoan. I aint talkin' bout chicken n' gravy biatch. Then yo ass git a all-expenses paid cruise ta tha Mediterranean n' yo ass git ta hook up Jared Padalecki on tha flight over while bustin yo' jammies. But still no medal.
  • he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things

    But he has no problem saying "no" to you (if not literally, then at least figuratively as he's too busy to help you)?  And is he not deeply involved in his FAMILY?

    I get that you want to be supportive of his interests and hobbies.  I get that.  But when they become a true BURDEN and keep him from being a 100% active member in your FAMILY - something needs to go.  It's that simple.  If he doesn't want to give any of this up then he shouldn't have had children.  But as he did- you and your kids need to be his FIRST priority.  

    "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
    ~Benjamin Franklin

    Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
    DS dx with celiac disease 5/28/10

  • Maybe you should do a wife swap and let your husband see how strenuous your life is. I?m sure then he will appreciate you more and be willing to help out. Cleaning, cooking, ect is not a one way street. All chores need to be divided equally by you and your husband. You both work hard so you should both share the household work.

    By the way don't ever say "I wish I didn't have my second child". It?s not the children?s fault. Sometimes we like to think that way because it makes it easier to blame someone else. But if something happened to your children you would be heartbroken.

     

  • imoanimoan member
    10000 Comments Eighth Anniversary

    May I ask why taking care of his own children is considered "helping you out"?!  He is their parent!  Cooking their dinner or watching them when you have to do something isn't HELPING, it's PARENTING!  I am so appalled by your line of thinking.

    Also, I think it's funny that you said asking him to give up his activities will be tough because he has a hard time saying no to people.  Well- I think it's LOVELY that he can't say no to other people, and is willing to help them... but when it comes to his own FAMILY- he has no problem just letting you fend for yourself.

    Your H is an azzhat and you're enabling it.  I'm amazed that a grown azz woman who didn't grow up in the 20's thinks that a man taking care of his own children is "helping" the mother out.  This is unbelievable to me. 

    image
    Currently Reading: Don Quixote by Miguel De Cervantes
  • image esh:
    But it still a lot since my little one requires ALL of my attention.

    And the 4-year-old didn't require ALL of your attention when it was a baby? This is nothing new to you, right? Or were you seriously expecting #2 to pop out potty-trained and able to walk and feed itself?

    The talk about him cutting back on extra curricular activities will be a bigger task since he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things.

    But saying no to you is okay? 

    I also don't want him to be unhappy and feel like he can't do things because of me.  I have to get him to see that its for the greater good of the family.

    Again, you both made the choice to have a family. Families aren't a part-time gig, or shouldn't be. That's not fair to the kids who didn't ask to be created.

    fiizzlee = vag ** fiizzle = peen ** Babies shouldn't be born wit thangs ** **They're called first luddz fo' a reason -- mo' is supposed ta come after. Yo Ass don't git a medal fo' marryin yo' prom date. Unless yo ass is imoan. I aint talkin' bout chicken n' gravy biatch. Then yo ass git a all-expenses paid cruise ta tha Mediterranean n' yo ass git ta hook up Jared Padalecki on tha flight over while bustin yo' jammies. But still no medal.
  • image esh:
    H def does help out and when possible he tries to take 4-yr old with him to community activities to help me out. But it still a lot since my little one requires ALL of my attention.

    But I will def be talking to H about household chores, asking him not to wait until I ask for his help but to jump in and help everyday.  Maybe a posted weekly schedule of household chores will work. I hate to be so structured with DH, but in order for me to be sane, I might have to do this.  Nanny, maid -- don't think it is an affordable option, but then again...I will check out some prices

    The talk about him cutting back on extra curricular activities will be a bigger task since he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things. I also don't want him to be unhappy and feel like he can't do things because of me.  I have to get him to see that its for the greater good of the family. 

    On the fence about putting my business on hold since its my passion, but maybe I will re-think the approach. 

    I so wish it was, but public school is a no-go in my area. Not a bad place, but the public schools def do not meet our expectations.  Believe me, we've checked them out.

    genevievea...
    I love this comment....its so true.

    It seems like you feel that you have to do it all, but when you stretch yourself too thin your relationship with your children and your husband will suffer.

    Thanks all for the advice, its been very helpful. Would still love to quite my job and go f/t with the business.

    Aah maybe next year. lol

    Um.  You clearly aren't hearing what most people have said:  when you have children, sometimes you have to put your "passions" aside for awhile.  If your DH can't say no to people (other than you when you ask him to do housework apparently) and you want to build a new small business, then the two of you should have postponed children.  But you didn't.  Now you have them.  So you have to make them a priority, especially in these first couple of years.  So quit your bitchin' and buckle down and do it. 

    You don't get to complain about how busy you are if you won't actually stop doing anything.  And it really looks like you've made your whole lives and all the fun things you want to do a higher priority than your youngest child.  You really need to take a harder look at your life--both you and DH--and make some real changes.

  • H def does help out

    I stopped reading right here.  You're not getting it.  Your husband shouldn't be "helping out"!  He should be COPARENTING YOUR CHILD and BEING AN EQUAL CONTRIBUTOR to your household.  When a friend or family member comes over and watches the kids for a couple hours, that's "helping out". 

    Good lord, no wonder you're miserable. 

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • image EastCoastBride:

    he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things

    But he has no problem saying "no" to you (if not literally, then at least figuratively as he's too busy to help you)?  And is he not deeply involved in his FAMILY?

    I get that you want to be supportive of his interests and hobbies.  I get that.  But when they become a true BURDEN and keep him from being a 100% active member in your FAMILY - something needs to go.  It's that simple.  If he doesn't want to give any of this up then he shouldn't have had children.  But as he did- you and your kids need to be his FIRST priority.  

    100% this
  • I agree with most of the advice of the pps. ?You need to pare down your life for a time to reconnect with your family. ?Getting a housecleaning service to do the heavy cleaning every two weeks can take a load off your shoulders and make your second child feel less like a burden.

    But I also wanted to suggest that you could be suffering from post partum depression. ?You are feeling physically worn down, negative and drained. ?There might be a physical cause for some of this stress as well.

  • image esh:


    The talk about him cutting back on extra curricular activities will be a bigger task since he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things.

    He apparently doesn't have a problem with the word "no" since he says it to his family all the time. He might not say it out loud, but his actions show it. And he might be deeply involved in many things, but he should be deeply involved in his family. Screw the other people. He didn't say vows to them.

    image esh:

    I also don't want him to be unhappy and feel like he can't do things because of me.  I have to get him to see that its for the greater good of the family. 

    But it's ok for you to be unhappy and for your children to not have an active father? Tell me how that works again...

  • Stop being a martyr. Tell your H he needs to step up and take care of half the chores around the house, he needs to make or bring home dinner half the week, and he needs to start putting the kids to bed if you take childcare when you first get home... you guys can swap off.  And then, if he doesn't do the chores your way or take care of the kids exactly the way you would, let it go and try to get some enjoyment out of your life while he learns.

    Because right now, I imagine you're not just making yourself miserable, but your family too. You don't have to do it all to be a worthwhile human being, you know - a lot of women seem to think that.

    And taking care of the crap around the house and the kids is not solely a woman's job. My dad worked F/T to my mom's SAH, and he still took childcare 50/50 whenever he was home. You know why? Because he loved his kids and being a dad means spending time taking care of them!  DH and I don't have kids, we both work, and we split all the chores 50/50... because being born a woman didn't make me a martyr who had to put my happiness on the back burner to cater to his needs.  You need to open your eyes and realize there are other ways to live your life than the path of misery you're going down now.

  • image esh:

    The talk about him cutting back on extra curricular activities will be a bigger task since he has a problem with saying no to ppl and since he's deeply involved in many things. I also don't want him to be unhappy and feel like he can't do things because of me.  I have to get him to see that its for the greater good of the family. 

    It sounds like you and your H are thinking about this in the wrong way. When your husband can't say no to other people, he's essentially saying no to his kids (and you). And you're worried that he'll be mad at you that he can't do things? Did he not want to have kids? Taking your 4-year-old every once in a while does not make him a good father. 

    You're both parents but you're doing all the parenting. 

  • I also don't want him to be unhappy and feel like he can't do things because of me.

    If he can't do things, it's not because of you but because he chose to be a parent too!  Everything you write screams that you feel you should make all the sacrifices but that his life should be the same as before.  Why are you trying to caretake your DH and be a martyr instead of insisting he face his own responsibilities as a husband and father?

  • image imoan:

    May I ask why taking care of his own children is considered "helping you out"?!  He is their parent!  Cooking their dinner or watching them when you have to do something isn't HELPING, it's PARENTING!  I am so appalled by your line of thinking.

    Also, I think it's funny that you said asking him to give up his activities will be tough because he has a hard time saying no to people.  Well- I think it's LOVELY that he can't say no to other people, and is willing to help them... but when it comes to his own FAMILY- he has no problem just letting you fend for yourself.

    Your H is an azzhat and you're enabling it.  I'm amazed that a grown azz woman who didn't grow up in the 20's thinks that a man taking care of his own children is "helping" the mother out.  This is unbelievable to me. 

    Ditto

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