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Old 07-30-2014, 05:02 PM
Location: DFW/Texas
922 posts, read 1,111,277 times
Reputation: 3805


So far, this has been a very hard summer for me. I am a SAHM with 2 children under the age of 5 and it has been HARD- and not only for me but for my husband, too. I am with our kids all day, every day, and throughout the night when they want me. I don't have a babysitter with the exception of my MIL and that's sporadic at best. I have told myself and my husband that I need to find us a reliable babysitter but I'm having a VERY hard time trusting someone who isn't part of our family to watch our children. So, I don't get any relief from our kids and my patience is wearing thin. I have a list of crafts that we're going through (I made a lemonade stand with them the other day, great Pinterest project) but it's hard to keep both of them entertained all day, every day. I only allow them to watch an hour of TV per day so that's out. They are just so used to being with me and they follow me all around the house getting under my feet while I'm trying to clean, do laundry, cook, etc. It's driving me nuts! Keeping the house in order is important to me, it makes me feel better and more efficient but it also is a ton of work while taking care of 2 small kids who need constant attention, touch, listening, etc.

I feel guilty for even thinking about taking time to myself and the times that I have gone out without them I end up rushing back so I don't "burden" the person watching them, and that includes my DH. Which brings me to another point: my husband began a new job last month and it's been a big adjustment for the 2 of us. He's up a lot earlier most of the time and goes to bed a lot earlier, too. He's one of those people who HAS to sleep as much as he can or else he can't function, so he's in bed by 8:30 pretty much every night and up at anywhere from 3:30-5AM. I totally understand his need to sleep in order to do his job and do it well (he takes a lot of pride in his work and strives to be the best) but his schedule has cut out any alone time that we have together as a couple. Our kids are in bed by 8-8:30, so, as you can guess, by the time we get them down for the night, my DH heads to bed himself and we haven't had any time alone.

I am overwhelmed and pissed off and just a bunch of "blah". What should I do?
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:06 PM
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
49,932 posts, read 59,927,052 times
Reputation: 98359
Find an accredited preschool or Mother's Day out they can attend 2 or 3 days a week from 9-2 or even just 9-12.

You and your kids will benefit.

Otherwise, you should get recommendations from a friend for a teen or college student who can sit with them while you do what you need to do.

This is a VERY hard age for moms, and you HAVE to have reliable help.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:35 PM
43,011 posts, read 108,030,943 times
Reputation: 30721
Surely short periods of time with a non-relative babysitter has to be better for the children than a stressed out mother who gets no breaks.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:59 PM
1,638 posts, read 3,831,215 times
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Join the YMCA! They have childcare. I know women who joined just to get a break. They'd drop the kids off and go read a book and take a leisurely shower in the locker room. Whatever gets you through!

Little kids are pretty easy to entertain. For one, you must have an afternoon quiet time. I made my kids "rest" from 12-2 for years. That didn't mean they had to sleep, but they needed to find a quiet activity (reading, watching a movie, etc) so I could have a break.

I am also a big believer in early bedtimes. I put my kids to bed at 7 for years, because we had no one to help us with the kids and it was the only time my husband and I had to be a couple. The older kids would play quietly in their rooms. The trade off was having kids up at the crack of dawn, but that was ok, because I'm an early bird, too.

McDonald's playland, or the playground, were always easy places to chillax while the kids burned off some energy.

Mine are all teens/preteens now. It goes by fast!
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:00 PM
1,638 posts, read 3,831,215 times
Reputation: 3502
Also, stock a lot of art supplies. Playdough, paper, scissors, stamps, crayons, stickers, glue, glitter, pipe cleaners, you name it! Sure it's messy, but my philosophy always was, if the time they spent entertained was longer than the time it took to clean up the mess, it was worth it
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:25 PM
Location: Ohio
5,624 posts, read 6,842,185 times
Reputation: 6802
Local Moms Group on Meetup

Personally MOPS would be my number 1 option. They meet monthly from pregnancy to age 5 (1st grade) and there is AM or PM MOPS (mostly AM). They talk about mothering issues and there is childcare. They usually meet starting in Sept but there are year round meetings. They also have playdates and moms nights out. Once you age out there is MOMSNext. Theres even Teen MOPS and Military MOPS.

Im a SAHM too and have been for 9yrs. It is hard but its such a blessing too!
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:48 PM
Location: Denver 'burbs
24,012 posts, read 28,452,372 times
Reputation: 41122
Consider finding a friend or neighbor child who is not quite babysitting age and hiring her as a "mother's helper" to supervise the kids while you are home but could use some uninterrupted time. Bonus is that you are grooming a future babysitter who you and the kids are already familiar with.
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Old 07-30-2014, 08:52 PM
2,547 posts, read 4,227,961 times
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How old is the youngest?
Try to get out of the house! I know me and my son both went nuts when he was younger if we were stuck at home. Indoor playspaces or tot-friendly playgrounds are great, and you can catch a bit of a break. Also find some activities where the kids are entertained by someone else even if you're there - I loved mommy and me classes, storytime at the library, Gymboree, whatever you can find where it takes the pressure off you for a bit. Until DS was about 3.5, I would even just stick him into a stroller and go for a walk, to the store or to grab a coffee, but the stroller provided some peace and quiet - I miss it now that he's 4,5 and we no longer use it, lol!

At home, try to find activities that will keep them occupied on their own for a bit. Set up a bowl of water with bubbles and toys for them to splash around; keep a box of 'real' objects, not toys, that they can play with - for some reason kids tend to be fascinated with those so much more: plastic dishes, containers, measuring cups and spoons, old remotes, phones, and cameras, old magazines, envelopes, ink and stamp pads, etc etc. My son could spend hours with an old keyboard, lol. You can make 'theme boxes' - 'post office', 'grocery', 'doctor', etc, and pull them out at different times. Also rotate toys and keep some hidden to pull out for those times when you need to get something done.
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Old 07-30-2014, 09:14 PM
5,989 posts, read 6,778,896 times
Reputation: 18486
You need to get out of the house with the kids, to be with other adults and their children. Screw the housework. Live with a dirty house. Go to the library, playgrounds, children's museums, aquariums, amusement parks. Join a mom's club. If you had friends with young children to get together with, you and the other parents can visit and chat while the kids play together. It will be better for your children, and for you.
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Old 07-30-2014, 10:58 PM
Location: DFW/Texas
922 posts, read 1,111,277 times
Reputation: 3805
I belong to my local chapter of MOMS Club and while it has been great in some aspects, it's also been bumpy a lot, too, with our former leader (we have elected positions) making a mess of the club in several ways. She's gone now, though, so the club is getting back on its feet. We do have play dates scheduled- for example, we're going to a local museum this Friday- but since we're such a small group (there are only 5 of us) it seems to be easy to have plans fall through a lot and then things get cancelled, etc.

I have a ton of art supplies, play-doh, paints, glue (although my DH has banned glitter from the house, lol) and they love to color and paint, and we'll have some funny talks while they're crafting. And they like to go outside and play in the garden and such and have water fights with the hose. It's still hard, though, as their attention spans are pretty short and they want to go and rush off to the next thing.

The idea of a mother's helper is something that really intrigues me, as it would allow me to get a break now and then and still be able to be here. My DH told me tonight that I HAVE to take the initiative and do things for myself and not allow things to get to such a low point. He's right and even though I agree and KNOW it, I still can't seem to wrap my head around doing such things without feeling guilty. WHY do I feel as if I don't deserve to take care of myself? I want to be the best mother I can be and I know that I can't do that if I'm feeling stressed and resentful. It's a catch-22 and I hate it.
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