advertisement
Question
Posted by: R | 2012/08/16

Tough times

Hi CS, my first time here, altho I think I always need some sort of help but never seek it.
Its been a really tough year. Had my second baby in December 11, mother fell sick and having a 4.5 yr old (best child), sick mother and unemployed hubby all taking away attention from myself and baby.
Baby was troublesome right from the start, and now at 8 months, falling into routine is very hard. I have not slept in over a year as I suffered insomnia during the pregnancy. Well, I do catch some sleeps at night, but due to baby''s frequent waking, not much.
Finally hubby has work. But in another province, which suits me just fine as things were getting too much hvaing to put up with his constant cry for attention and the things that really frustrated and annoyed me, and then the now 5yr old and him always having some sort of fight, or son often getting hurt in rough play and coming to me crying.
Dealing with it all, and a crying baby, became too much, so I''m not regretful h''e''s gone. Its a few days now, he left on Monday, and as time goes I start to worry over new things.
The 5 yr old asks for his father and each time i find he''s more emotional. I do not show negative emotion in hubby''s absence (that i''m missing him, etc), and I do talk about his father and they talk on the phone everyday, but I''m afraid how this will affect him.
I reminded him his dad also worked away until he was about 3, and he doesn''t remember this, but I''m trying to reassure him that everything will be ok. My heart is breaking for him, even though he said on Tuesday at least daddy is not there to shout at him.
He''s a really lovely child, has the normal cheekiness and naughtiness of a 5 yr old, completely controllable as he is obedient most of the time, but his father just has no clue how a child''s mind works, so often it became a burden just waiting for when my son would cry, and always trying to hold back as he needs to learn to deal with his father without intervention from me.
I''m not sure if it would be a good idea to invite people over on the weekend just to be busy, so he doesn''t miss his dad too much? Or would it be better to just be together this weekend and get through this phase?
As for me, I have a lot more structure at home on seeing to the kids now. I work full time and need to make time for everything. I''m hoping baby will fall into routine soon as I''m exhausted and inside just crying for some time out.
I don''t have any support in terms of close family or friends, so taking time-out by myself is out of the question.
Hubby will be coming home monthly and I''m afraid too how this will affect the older son, the in and outs...

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Welcome, R.
Unemployment is a common and distressing problem, but at least it should mean that the unemployed husband should have far more time and energy available for helping the mother with household chores and child-care, somewhat lessening her burden. He should not himself have been demanding attention and expecting to be a focus of attention when there was a new child and a sick adult in the household.
Some babys are indeed more restless and readily upset from the start, and I think some kids pick up tensions and worries in the family and respond by being this way.
Let's see what other experienced moms on the forum have to say here. I'd expect the older child to adapt to the father's absence before long - maybe he grew used to having dad around all the time during the unemployment, so the contrast is greater in his experience. I wouldn't expect him to be negatively impacted by this. Just continue to take it calmly, and remind him of why this is happening, and how it will benefit all of you in the longer run.
Yes, he probably wont remember how things were when he was 3 - children's capacity to form and access memories reliably doesn't form properly until nearer 4 or 5.
Remind the boy that he is loved by all of you, and that its none of his fault that dad had to go away for a while for work. Children can indeed form the view that somehow such family events may be their fault, especially where the absent dad used to shout at him.
These are very early days in his adjustment to the changed situation - try spending more quality time with him, maybe call in some family if it seems useful. Prepare the boy for the monthly visits by dad, to help him understand both why dad is coming back for a visit, and why he'll be going back away again.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

1
Our users say:
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/08/16

Welcome, R.
Unemployment is a common and distressing problem, but at least it should mean that the unemployed husband should have far more time and energy available for helping the mother with household chores and child-care, somewhat lessening her burden. He should not himself have been demanding attention and expecting to be a focus of attention when there was a new child and a sick adult in the household.
Some babys are indeed more restless and readily upset from the start, and I think some kids pick up tensions and worries in the family and respond by being this way.
Let's see what other experienced moms on the forum have to say here. I'd expect the older child to adapt to the father's absence before long - maybe he grew used to having dad around all the time during the unemployment, so the contrast is greater in his experience. I wouldn't expect him to be negatively impacted by this. Just continue to take it calmly, and remind him of why this is happening, and how it will benefit all of you in the longer run.
Yes, he probably wont remember how things were when he was 3 - children's capacity to form and access memories reliably doesn't form properly until nearer 4 or 5.
Remind the boy that he is loved by all of you, and that its none of his fault that dad had to go away for a while for work. Children can indeed form the view that somehow such family events may be their fault, especially where the absent dad used to shout at him.
These are very early days in his adjustment to the changed situation - try spending more quality time with him, maybe call in some family if it seems useful. Prepare the boy for the monthly visits by dad, to help him understand both why dad is coming back for a visit, and why he'll be going back away again.

Reply to cybershrink

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
advertisement