Why are we here?

by Katrina on March 8, 2010

“How do you do it all?”

I used to get that a lot. From other moms at my son’s preschool. From parents at the Y where my daughter took swim lessons. From coworkers at the web consulting agency where I managed a team of designers. From the editor at the publishing company that offered me a contract to write a design book. Even from my husband.

I was a 37-year-old mother of three* and somehow, my kids, my marriage, and my career were all thriving.

Then, one Saturday afternoon in the spring of 2009, while driving to Target to buy diapers, I broke down. Not my car. Me.

photo by Natasha Mileshina

I pulled over to the side of the road, my hands shaking, barely able to breathe. I called my husband and sobbed, “I can’t do this anymore.”

Thus ended my career, and thus began a journey into crippling depression, anxiety, and insomnia; medication, meditation, and therapy. As I learned to heal my body and my mind, I searched for answers to one question: What the hell happened to me?

At first, I thought there was something wrong with me. After all, I had a loving husband, a supportive boss, healthy kids, a good income. If I couldn’t manage a career and a family then how were other women doing it, women who didn’t have all those advantages?

I started talking to my friends, my relatives, my housekeeper, my doctor, my babysitter. I wanted to know how were they managing it. Guess what? They weren’t. They suffered from panic attacks and depression, heart palpitations and hives, migraines and mysterious coughs that won’t go away. Some of them took anti-depressants. Others took anti-anxiety medications. Most of them fantasized about quitting their jobs. They were barely getting by. I had no idea. Like me, they had been putting a brave face on their suffering. Like me, they all assumed there was something wrong with them.

There are dozens of self-help books telling women they can do it all—succeed in demanding careers and still be good parents, good partners, and even happy, fulfilled people. But my experience and that of the women I know tells a different story.

I decided to start this blog as a place where I could organize my thoughts and connect with others who are thinking deeply about this issue. And so, dear reader, we find ourselves here, on an auspicious day, International Women’s Day, at the beginning of what I hope will be a fruitful conversation about why raising kids in the U.S. is so ridiculously, head-achingly, heart-breakingly hard, and what we can do about it.

If you have a story about raising kids and working or watching other people do it, I want to hear about it. If you’re a researcher or a policy maker and care about this issue, let’s talk. If you have a wild or brilliant idea for how to make this better, I want to hear about that, too.

Leave your comment here, or email me privately at katrina@workingmomsbreak.com.

*NOTE: I have two kids of my own and a stepdaughter on the weekends. I never know if I should say I have two kids or three. I usually say three because there are three children I love and care for on a regular basis.

{ 186 comments… read them below or add one }

Mel

I am so run down. The house is always a mess… there are always dirty dishes and the floor is littered with toys which i clean up daily. I work night shift so i am exhausted, drag myself up to make the kids breakfast…i spend my morning on the laptop while they play or watch tv. Afternoons they go to childcare where i am about to pick them up from. We don’t even eat very good meals anymore, i don’t really have much energy to cook and i think more of a problem is finding time to go to the grocery store as we share a car and i go to work not long after he gets home. I can’t really do this anymore but we need the money… i decided i will take the kids to the park on the way home today as i am realizing that they don’t get QUALITY time with us, not enough of it at least. I feel miserable and working in fast food has made me put on so much weight that i am no longer healthy and that is rather depressing too. I don’t feel i get any help around the house, i used to at some point but with his job being so demanding i no longer do.

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ashley

mel im doing the same thing…one car he works days I work nights I leave right as he gets home…I don’t even enjoy my time home most days…I often look forward to going to work…not so much lately tho…me and my other half constantly bicker about everything and anything…my kids attitudes r getting worse…now my oldest (2 1/2) needs speech therapy…another thing to add to the list of having to move by march…share a vehicle keep my job…I feel this job has made all worse but we need the money….I don’t know how much more of this I can take..im tired of being so angry and sad all the time its never anything else..

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Janet

I’m struggling with the intense mom guilt I feel for working outside of the home. I find myself weighing the pros and cons of seeking a career constantly throughout my day. I want my children to eat healthy food, have a roof over their head, go to excellent schools (right now my daughter is in a Chinese immersion class at a very innovative international school), and have money for college. I want my husband and I have to have money for retirement and to travel. But I also want to cook dinner for my kids every night, read them stories, and be a part of their day, play with them, run with them, teach them and watch them learn new things. I think social media ends up being my downfall a lot of time..I feel stressed that my pleasure in enjoying the moments I have with my children are not deemed to be enough. If I am not with my children 24/7 I am all of a sudden not considered to be parenting them, and then I think that is where most of my Mom guilt comes from… Then I wonder, is it fair to stay at home parents to say I am as much parent as they are when I don’t stay home, but is it fair to me to say I am not as much parent because I work… Thanks for your blog, I am looking forward to subscribing and finding support. I am the mother of 2 young children. I worked with my daughter for about 18 months, and then stayed at home with her for 6 months. Then I went to work full time and sent her to day care. When she was 3 I had my son, but with him I went back to work when he was 3 months and he went to day care for 3 months. Then I quit my job, and am now attending law school full time on a scholarship while my son is now watched by my husband and Mom, and my daughter does part time preschool and has my Mom too. My school schedule often allows me to spend additional time with my kids compared to my 4o hour work schedule, but I worry about the career path I’m working towards.

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map carptek cool bag tags

Yes! Finally something about web design company video production.

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Jessie

I am a mom of a three year old little girl. I have my own business and I live with my daughters father ( my boyfriend ) I am so burnt out!! Between running a business, working out, cleaning the house running to nursery school and ballet. I’m just Exhausted!!! I want out of my relationship he is useless and I’m pretty sure he is cheating on me while I run our house hold. This is not what I thought it was going to be. He is demanding and a fool but I don’t want to leave because of my daughter … I don’t know what to do. Please help me.

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Ann

Leave him.

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Gary

Leave him, you will have a better quality and peaceful live :)

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kav

I am solo mother to two beautiful boys. I work full time teaching ontop oF traveling to work which is 2 hours away in busy traffic.my day begins at 4am in the morning and doesn’t end till after thr kids r asleep which I’d around 8-9 pm.and than ontop of that I do my teaching planning assessments marking etc etc.so i would on average get around 3-4 hours sleep maX. luckly i am grateful to have my parents help who help drop my older boy to school and my youngest travels with me.sometimes i forget to give myself credit at how hard I work and that I am a great mum.luckly i have 2 best friends that do that for me…..i am very greatful for thEm.i try and embrace everyday as a new day and smile and tell my boys i love them everyday. EVEN though financially it it hard especially with all the long hours bills keep coming and it can get hard at times.I keep reminding myself to stay positive and i make sure I pray before I go to bed…

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pookagt

wow. Im glad i found this. I am a full time student and have 3 kids, (10,5 and 2) Im trying to get through school as fast as i can cuz i got a late start and want to be able to support my family. I live with my boyfriend and he is a dream, but I want to be self sufficient. I am on aid and have been since my youngest was born, but it’s no way to raise a family. Because of this I find myself taking 18 units so I can transfer next semester (Fall) and because I have no money, and a divorce left me with horrible credit my only option to pay for tuition is financial aid and scholarships. I maintain a 4.0 which means I am always doing homework. Well not always I also have a family and they require a lot. I try to divy myself evenly between my kids so no one gets “neglected” and try to spend enough time with the bf to keep a healthy relationship. At times I feel like super woman juggling my school, my kids school (volunteer work), errands, food, laundry, dr’s, and my family and then one day out of no where I can barely get dressed. I have the cough that never goes away and have a hard time dealing with all three of my kids at one time for more than an hour or two. I get stressed out and have the urge to run away sometimes. I felt crazy and ashamed like I should be able to do this without so much effort and sometimes it is easy, but the gas runs low at times and i freak out. I keep dusting myself off and getting back in “the game” until the next time i have a mini melt down. I have the support of family and an amazing man but sometimes it feels like im doing it alone. idk, it’s nice to vent. :)

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thekgi

hi, i am a single mother of two toddlers, a full time employee and a student and i do not have a live in nanny. every morning i wake up, bath the kids, feed them, drop them off at the nursery travel 200km to and from work, rush back to fetch them, cook, feed them, bath them, play with them, read them a bed time story and put them to bed. I rest for like 30 minutes to an hour, take out my books and start studying. I am completetly worn out. i am tired. i forgot what i loved to do in my past time. i have lost alot of friends because i do not have time. my life has become a vicious circle, a fulltime job of giving myself unto others. I have put on this super mom cap that is starting to feel heavy on me. Tonight as i am writing this i was thinking of just how tired i have become how lonely i now feel. maybe some of you can help

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Roxanne

Hi…I know how you feel…I am a full time working mother of 3 kids ( my ex husband started using drugs and started hitting me and being abusive so I got a divorce after 13 years). I drop my youngest off at daycares, then go to work for average of 10 hours a day ( sometimes more) to a very demanding job where I am on call as well 24\7 as I am a manager in healthcare…then rush to pick him up before day care closes, come home to cook, clean up after everyone, check homework and if they have sports this can’t even start til after baseball or football at 8-830 at night. My current boyfriend I am slowly realizing is not there for me financially or helps me with bills or housework or any errands,etc. I have if I am lucky 1-2 hours after all of this to get anything done. On top of this I get multiple calls from work with problems I need to answer to. I have no nanny or help from family. I have minimal time for any social life and often feel too stressed to really feel like I am good company. I am jealous of other mothers who have a better quality of life with their children…just am so depressed and exhausted, lonely….there has to be more to life…and I am over my head in debt due to exhausband! Please help!!!

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Ann

Hi,

I am a successful manager, married mother of 2. On the surface I have been doing a pretty good job of appearing that I am handling the endless meaningless grind of waking up at the crack of dawn, pushing my two girls out the door to before care, driving for an hour in bad weather to go to a job where I am so overworked that I usually work through lunch, leaving at 5 only to drive at least another hour, get home where my husband has not likely done too much, so then I start making lunches for the next day and supper, eventually flopping into bed exhausted yet again. I am cranky at my children, they don’t deserve this. This week I finally started to crack at work and push back on the ridiculous workload, of course by this point of course it’s not coming out right, after years of this cycle, I guess I am only just human…

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Michelke

Ann…I feel like I’m in the same boat as you. I am a nurse manager of icu. I never tell my boss no. I do all the work and all my staff knows it. I don’t want to say I can’t get it all done because about a year ago I moved to this position, not in pay or title, but just the work load. I went from 3 13 hours shifts a week, one weekend a month, and three holidays a year. To 4 days a week. I always start at 0630 and leave anywhere from 4-7. I’m now off on Fridays, no weekends, no holidays, so I feel if I say anything about the workload I will have to go back to bedside car and work weekends and holidays, but on the same token is my sanity worth it. This week my mental health issues, not being able to handle my life, has presented as a physical illness. I feel like I am going to faint in any position other than lying flat. I don’t know whatbtondo

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Kay

I’m glad i found this thread. I’m married and i’m a part-time nurse with a 2 year old and a 3 years old. My husband works night and i work days flexibly. Kids attend nursery for 3 days in which my husband brings and picks them up 2 days and i do one day when i’m off work. I feel lucky to have him but at the same time, he waits for me to come home to get them ready and dressed for bed, tidy the toys, cook the dinner sometimes and prepare their clothes for the next morning. He also tends not to help on the days i’m not working and gets upset if i try to discuss it. I do feel though that im being unfair to him as night work is difficult especially when everyone else is awake in the day. He keeps saying its tough on him and i dont appreciate what he does for the kids but i feel like he also does not appreciate that i also do alot.

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Karen

I am a single mum of 2 girls, I get no help from my ex husband so I do it all. I work full time, I am the only parent, and I pay all the bills. My job has been stressful and required long hours at times, I have recently moved within the same company and my current job is fantastic. But at home… my youngest daughter is agressive at times, she is now refusing to go to school saying that she is ill. She says there is nothing wrong at school and the teachers confirm this. And I am at my wits end, I don’t know what to do for her/with her and at the same time I am under pressure to keep earning to provide for us. When I am at home it doesn’t appear to make any difference to her, so giving up work (even if it was an option) wouldn’t be enough. Everywhere I turn there appears to be another brick wall.

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rubi

Both my girls went through a faze where they just refused to go to school. I could not believe they thought it was optional. The older daughter and I argued about this everyday for months until I realized she was upset about other things and this was a call for help/attention. I tried to set aside other time that was just for her and she was mostly grouchy but I think it helped her to know I was trying. Eventually, it just went away.

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Amanda

I am a single mother of a beautiful funny very demanding 6 year old. I am also a partner teacher of 44 preschoolers. I rest my case. I am burnt out beyond on going back I think. I cant sleep. I have to force myself to cry, because sometimes I think if I could just get it all out scream and shout that would make me feel better! I lost my appetite, I am loosing weight. I do not have suicidal tenancies. But I am lonley. If I had someone good to share the load with I think I could step out of it. I am a positive and very optimistic woman. I want my life back.

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rubi

I work with senior citizens and they tell me this is the time in life you just have to keep going and it will get better. I try to find one nice thing to look forward to each week…ben and jerrys ice cream, new seeds for my garden, a new craft project. They are small and silly but nice to think about. I have a sitter come sat eve and am taking a dance class now. It helps provide some immediate fun. Maybe you could plan a summer trip or weekend away? Hope this helps.

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Lauren Millard

I’m a mother of 3 and have a great husband.
After 16 years at home I’ve just started a full time job.
My husband has been struggling to get a job and is fighting depression.
This job just happened, I’m a funeral director and I’m so overwhelmed by the job itself but the full time gig!
Respect to all for doing it, I cry heaps and sometimes at work (I know classy hey)
The paperwork thats part of the job is really full on.
Has anyone got any tips to keeping calm, focused and moving forward!

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Farah

I’m so happy to find this post. I am indeed inneed of help. I am an international student studying away from my home country. I have my husband and my son with me. My husband is also a student but he also works online as a website designer for several companies. My son is about 22 months old and is very clever and healthy. Every other parts of my life is good. We gain good income that could support us throughout our lives overseas, I’ve always got a good grade before that I finally made it to a medical school. So I am , now, a medical student, to be exact, a 4th year medical student. If I go around the lecture theatre at my uni and asked if there is anyone there a mother and also a medical student, I would not find one. Being a medical student is like the one of the toughest and busiest lifestyle ever, and in my case, I add my married life on top of that. I found myself very teary and weak these few days. I barely wake up every morning feeling ‘great.. can’t wait to start my day today!’. Every morning I wake up to weird feelings.. I feel like I don’t want to do this. I feel like I don;t want to do anything today..

My son is growing and of course, he needs a lot of attention, but I couldn’t do it anymore… I am so exhausted juggling with everything. My husband has been supporting me alot but he is too juggling with his stuff and I can’t depend too much on him. Sometimes I was too exhausted , I got angry and I shouted at my son and I felt really really bad and guilty about that. I really wanted to be the best mother for him, I want him to be happy, I want him to see me happy but it has been a few times when I cried and sobbed in front of him because I just couldn’t face this anymore.

I know I need help but I really have no idea where should I go.. I don’t even have time to think about it. While writing this, I’m fighting a dilemma on whether or not I should keep writing because I have a lot of things to study and assignments to be done.

To anyone who read this, please make some prayers for me. My only wish is so that I can graduate next year and that I could always be a good mom to my son.

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stephalexa12

I’m so happy I found this blog. I am a 24 year old full time student,mother of two little girls (6 months and 3 years old). I work full time and not to mention single mom. Ever since their father got out of the military he decided his priorities are his friends and family. This does not include me or his children. I love my children but feel so lost and as if I’m going to lose my mind. The lack of sleep, no help, not having enough time to do homework or anything else besides watch the kids has left me so stressed out. I don’t honestly think people understand how hard it is to try to do everything with minimal help. Raising kids working, going to school, and trying to do your daily routine can honestly drag a person down. there’s days where I’m at home and after hours of the kids crying I just feel like locking myself in the bathroom and crying. I left their father for a better future and you knew it would be hard but didn’t think it would be this difficult and mentally draining. I look back four years ago when I was 20 years old, no kids no stress, gym junkie and makeup artist and don’t even know who I am today. My life has changed so much in the short four years. I really appreciate blogs like this because on days where I feel alone and to my breaking point I know that there’s other moms out there in the same boat as me.

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Michelle gold

I am also a career mom who is insanely overhelmed at times w my 3 and 6 year old. I have an extremely helpful husband amd yet sometimes I break down In tears from exhaustion.

Three things have helped heal me (besides my faith in a higher power)

1. I’ve decided to homeschool my kids. No more rat race this way to and from school. We go to the YMCA a few times a week where I get 2 hours to myself and they get social interaction.

2. For weekends and since homeschooled, on weekdays, there is quiet/roomtime. We started this when they outgrew naps.
Everyday they get an hour and half mandatory quiet/room times where they play in their rooms and I get quiet. whether I use that time to nap and eat or write a song, it’s heavenly!
(When I first instilled this they tried to fight me on it but I threaten to take away TV provelages or iPad time if they don’t stay in room) They have tons of great toys to play with and lots of good books.

3. I have limited activities to once a week dancing school and 2 times YMCA. Weekends are completely open always unless I am doing a concert somewhere and i often don’t bring them cuz I’m cuddling with them or cleaning up after them all day

I’m not sure how single moms homeschool (guessing they work some nights??? Or have family helping) but I will tell you that it’s q financial sacraficw to work less.

4. I enrolled in the daveramsey.com financial peace program which allows me to work less and live on a smaller budget. I now have more time for my family and for rest.

Still ain’t easy. Sometimes Im completely wired and can’t calm down for bedtime. But at least I get a 15 min nap each day if I need it. At times, I’ve had to visit my women’s support group to cope. Being a mom totally is the most exhausting challange of a lifetime.

If u are reading this and feel depressed, find a free anonymous meetig near you. http://Www.alanon.org

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Heather

I swear, I start to think things get better but then we take a downward spiral. We filed bankruptcy and we are surrendering the house. I am embarrassed because it is awful the house is a money pit. When we moved in it was great, then the child support was raised to over double then we added another teenager to the mix. Then my father in law got sick, we lost him in 08′ then things were looking up child support stopped we were getting ahead and finally could start fixing the broken house the plumbing and septic and the list went on. Then the papers came you are be sued!!! Back to child support and loans and payments of more support and lawyers that don’t do a damn thing. So then you add more debt, more house, more child support and the teenager is still at home and one that needed to be in college that is still home. Then the mother in law is sick badly. We lost mom two weeks before Christmas. We then added a dog to the mix. We finally file and things are ok. Then the dog is sick and we put him down this week. My husband is very depressed not that he would admit it. Now he gets in these moods that he needs something and it is 90 miles an hour to get it right now and if I say something negative toward it I am a bitch and he goes and sulks for days. He is thin, he smokes a lot. He tries to quit but he becomes an ass. Now at 43 he thinks he needs HGH human growth hormones to help him feel better. Seriously we are losing this house because of his child support and lawyers and loans and now I can’t get $500 to fix my fricking car because I hit a deer and he don’t care that it is wrecked. It is crap well duh if we fix it it won’t be crap. Get up and do something he sits and sulks and is crabby and won’t do anything to get ready to move. I do all the house work and cooking and laundry and the boys and husband do nothing. We are losing our house get out of your funk and do something. I seriously want to run away!

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Amy

I’m 38. Have 2 children 12 & 10, boy and a girl. A husband whom I’ve been with for 15 years. I work part time and 3 days a week watch my 2 month old nephew. My house is always a mess. there’s always laundry. My kids argue all the time. My husband never seems to be interested in what I have to say. I make chore charts for my kids to help out, which lasts about 3 days. My husband works A LOT. I am happier when not at home because all I do is clean up, cook, taxi the kids, and yell all the time. I’m on anti depressants, anxiety meds, sleeping pills, and muscle relaxers for my jaw. I’m in constnt pain from muscle spasms in my jaw and have been for almost a month. I seriously can not take it anymore. I am not suicidal. I would just rather be somewhere else other than home. I watch as my husband and kids relax and play together, while I do everything around the house. I am aware I have aided in my kids doing nothing for themselves but, it’s just easier than yelling when they won’t help me.

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Julia

I am happy to read that I am not the only one. Was a single mom of two. I work ft and clean pt to make ends meet. I am a bad chooser of men so no support. I actually survived my oldest and got her in to college with lots of aid and loan but I am still proud! Unfortunately she hardly speaks to me because she has new freedom and seems angry I cant pay for her school and car. She refuses to get additional job, just victim mentality. Pretty upsetting since she had a strong hard worker as a mom but hoping someday she realizes NOTHING was given to me. My son is in hs. Doing well. I am a new wife but seriously still single mom, just realize I gained another kid of sorts. Thought it would be better, financial better, and not alone. I feel like a nightmare. Im always easy to cry and angry more than ever. I am tired. I want to see light at end of tunnel but I feel so lost and desperately disappointed. I thought I found mr wonderful but when I am tore up, tired and crying he just gets angry and says I make everyone miserable. I don’t want to medicate, or start drinking. … just trying to run the dogs and feel better through exercise a few days a week when I can SQUEEZE it in. Ugh!

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Sad mom

What do we do? I have two boys 11 & 9… Can’t get them to help around the house. I am blessed to work part time-20 hrs a week… between all of the housework (which right now I’m boycotting because I hate doing it), kid shuffling, meal making, grocery shopping, laundry. & all the yard work… I’m done. Im not happy.. I yell a lot.. Now I just ignore because what’s the use?…. I hate coming home from work.. I’m eating in parking lots because I know nothing will be made for dinner and the house will be a mess… It’s not where I wanted to be at age 40. Now I understand why mothers fake their deaths and go missing. It sucks to be female theses days… Just sucks

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renatha

My story is one you probably won’t here to often as a single mother of three kids. I served my country in the army for over 12 years while with my three children. My best friend has helped me out along the way for majority of my military time. Going to college wasn’t an option for me the whole time I was active duty so 12 years later I am enrolled in college. Balancing college deadlines, medical appointments for the kids and I, raising a teenager, spending family time, organizing, cleaning the house everyday, working a part time job which is going to turn into me working another job as well, and doing so many other things in my life makes my head spin. I have read so many articles about juggling it all but most of them (no offense) are people who have husband’s. I will say this I hate that the husbands act like they can’t do one or two things to help out when a mom and women has to do and will do 25 things or more. When I see people who have husband’s I am like wow they are lucky because they will work as a team. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem like the case and they are doing the same thing a single mother does who isn’t married. I hope and pray that more husband’s will step up. As far as my kids and I we work as a team somedays are better then others but it’s a juggling act. When I first started college I stayed up til 3 or 4 am n the morning studying and reading my work after two weeks of doing that I just crashed. I had to reorganize everything even now. I am undergraduate college for pharmacy tech then pursuing graduate school for pharmacist. I have a long way to go and ita already a bumpy ride. Too many distractions from haters, family who are supportime of my dream bc they went to college first. GOD has a plan for each and every one of us if we all followed the same plan then how would we be different people they achieve different things. This is my story and one day I wil write a book already have the title but it’s a working progress as of now. Good luck to you all. Continue to pray, have faith in GOD, and let your haters be your motivators.

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Laura A

WOW. I truly have mad respect for moms who can handle this for even a short amount of time. My mother was a single mother of 2, with a house, full time job, college on the weekends and I have no memories of the house ever being messy, of not spending quality time with her.
I look up to her like you have no idea and if I can do half as good as she did I’d be lucky.
Now I’m 30 years old, I don’t have kids yet, getting married in a month, I have 2 jobs and try my hardest to keep my house presentable and my marriage to be thriving, planning the wedding and talking about kids already but I still have mini break downs from time to time when I feel I don’t have enough time to do it all.
I have to admit this has helped me see how strong and brave I really am and my husband to be has forced me to learn that it’s OK if not everything is perfect nor will it ever be but that I should always prioritize my happiness :)

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emily

I am a full time working mom of two!! I have a soon to be 5 year old drama queen, and a rough and tumble 16 mo old boy! my husband is currently in his 4th year of school and works 3rd shift part time. We have gone from living in our own home to renting that out while living with his parents and now mine!! We’ve downsized, switched to cheaper daycares, sold cars, etc. although I thought living with my parents would bring more help I think it has actually added more work and stress!! I end up watching my nephews occasionally (when my parents volunteered to keep them) helping my sister whom is a newly single mom, helping around my parents house, running to ballet class my mother signed my daughter up for. and cleaning up after my loving but slob of a husband who has recently slipped into his own little universe! I work in a medical office that is undergoing ALOT of changes and work with a few VERY unpleasant women!! my stuff is in boxes at my parents house and at his!! in addition my husband recently failed a class so he would like to take on fewer work hours to increase his study time. I know I should be more supportive of this but I’ve already cut back and budgeted to the extreme and he still lectures me on my spending!! I feel like my life is a sinking ship steadily taking on more water every day!oh the chaos!!! any suggestions, advice, motivational speeches?! lol

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Beth

I am so glad I found this blog. I started to feel like I was so alone. I am a full time working mom. Granted I work from home but I also take care of my son full time. His dad is in the picture but works the day shift as well as myself at home but doesn’t offer much help. He continues to say, well I told it was going to be hard. It wouldn’t be so hard if he helped out more.

I love the fact I work from home so I can see my son grow but I really wonder how much quality time he is getting. I break down crying at least once every other day about how stressed I am with balancing my son, my job and our house. My fiance does help but, I pull the brunt of the work. If our son gets up in the middle of the night, most nights I’m getting up to take care of him and then I have to be up with him early the next morning. My son is 3 months old, so there is no sleeping through the night yet. With all of this it’s starting to take a toll on my relationship with my fiance. Both of our families live an hour away so it’s hard for them to help us.

I worked very hard to get this new role, which I did a month and half before I went out on maternity leave. So this is all new to me, so I’m learning my current position on top of taking care of my son. Some days I just want to quit my job so I can focus on being a mom and raising the best little boy I can. Other days I find myself resenting my son because I have worked so hard for this role at work. We need the money I know but, I can’t believe how much stress I feel by trying to do duel roles. Not only that since I just had my baby 3 mths ago I haven’t lost hardly any of the weight. I couldn’t breast feed because my milk never really came in. I tried to pump for as long as I could which turned out to be a month. I was so exhausted pumping, getting up with my son and trying to function during the day I chose to formula feed him. Of course that’s more money on top of everything we have to pay monthly. Its just a mess right now.

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rubi

just keep going. it gets easier. i worked at home with my first daughter. it was very hard to balance the roles. i learned to plan work for when i knew my daughter would generally be sleeping or quiet. by about 8 months she was more interactive and i sent her to daycare part-time so i could have some defined time to concentrate on work. you can do it- be patient with your self.

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Allison

I’m 33 work in a very stressful banking job where I hate the work culture, hate the high demand and crazy off the wall expectations- crazy demanding bosses, And crazy demanding clients day in day out. I drive 45 minutes to and from work every day as well. I make good money, but not good enough to not still feel tight all the time. My daughter is 9, and I have been a single mom for 7 years. Had a few dead end stressful relationships along the way. Now I have a great boyfriend who I’m living with, but who works out of town and is gone for 3 weeks of the month. I have 2 dogs on my own, and have acquired his big, who is very high needs, destroying my house… I can’t stand to look after this dog essentially on my own. My daughter is amazing and relatively an easy child, good natured and helpful and supportive– but the dogs, the work, and dealing with the loneliness from the boyfriend being gone just make me feel like I could snap. I wake up almost every morning with anxiety, and try to just numb it out emotionally. I try to stay positive, and busy but also try to relax- but it’s hard! I can’t stand this dog, I can’t stand my work, I can’t stand how long my boyfriend is gone for, and I can’t stand that I’ve been doing this on my own for this long. I keep hoping just around the corner something will make things easier, but it never happens. I feel guilty too, feel like my work life takes so much out of me that I don’t have the energy and right attitude to show my daughter- I just always feel like I’m mucking my way through things.

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rubi

There’s a literay quote, ‘we build our own prisons.’ Maybe its time for a change.

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Lacee

Hi ladies,

This is great just reading how I’m not as insane as I’m feeling. I work full time at an adoption agency. I get so caught up in making families that it’s hard to think of doing anything else…until I think of my own family. I get so jealous of these adopting moms wanting to take in a dozen kids- and doing it well. I can’t even think of going to the grocery store much less having a moment to myself that lasts more than 5 minutes. But yet somehow I manage to go to the store and the petstore almost every single flipping day. Never get everything I need. Never. I won’t even go into when the last time I had my hair cut. I neglect going to the Dr. too, which is really bad! When my kids aren’t yelling “MOMMY” my husband is. Even though my husband makes a good living, even with me working full time, we barely make ends meet. I have no idea what I would do if I was single. I hope I’m not offending anyone, but seriously. How on Earth is that even possible? I really don’t know how they do it. If I didn’t work I would feel like my kids would not get to do the extracurricular things, you know music, sports, etc. they need. It’s so expensive. But, then again, I feel like they miss out on having two stress-free parents who have time to be patient with them. I feel like we yell waaay more than necessary, just because we are always in a hurry. I hate it. Thank you for listening!

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Amanda

Hi I need help! I am a married mom of four . I work all day and rush to get my seven year old twins from school. Only to rush home to take my 13 year old to ball practice an hour away almost everyday. On the weekend I travel with her ball team. My husband works second shift so he is never home. I just need to find balance. I feel like I never stop and I’m always in a dead rush. I’ve gain twenty pounds in three months. I am really going crazy . My house a mess, my car trashed. Cooking that’s out of the question. Mean while the kids fight more and more. I can’t make anyone happy. Going to the market has even become difficult since my twins throw tantrums anywhere I go. What’s frustrating is hearing ” single moms” get so much credit. I have realized all moms should be viewed equally.

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Maribel

Hey there Amanda,I’m so sorry you’re going through all this,I’m by no means an expert,I’m also a mom so,I feel you!!
I don’t know what to call this,you name it,advice,opinion,etc.There’s so much going on in your daily life,have you considered asking your kids how they feel about their routine? Maybe they too feel overwhelmed and wished they could just give up some of their afterschool activities,sometimes less is more and that could give you all more time to connect as a family!!blessings!

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jennifer

Good news, I want to use this opportunity to thank the great man Dr Mutuma who really made my life a pleasurable one today. This great man Dr Mutuma brought my husband back to me. I have two lovely kids for my husband, about four years ago i and my husband has been into one quarrel or the other until he finally left me for one lady. I felt my life was over and my kids thought they would never see their father again. I tried to be strong just for the kids but i could not control the pains that torments my heart, my heart was filled with sorrows and pains because i was really in love with my husband. Every day and night i think of him and always wish he would come back to me, until one day i met a good friend of mine that was also in a situation like me but her problem was her ex-boyfriend who she had an unwanted pregnancy for and he refused to take responsibility and dumped her. she told me that mine was a small case and that i should not worry about it at all, so i asked her what was the solution to my problems and she gave me this great man’s email address. drmutumahouseofsolution121@gmail .com. I was doubting if this man was the solution, so i contacted this great man and he told me what to do and i did them all, he told me to wait for just 48 hours and that my husband will come crawling on his kneels begging me just for forgiveness so i faithfully did what this great man asked me to do and for sure after 48 hours i heard a knock on the door, to my surprise i saw him on his kneels and i was speechless, when he saw me, all he did was crying and asking me for forgiveness, from that day, all the pains and sorrows in my heart flew away, since then i and my husband and our lovely kids are happy, that’s why i want to say a big thank you to Dr Mutuma. This great man made me to understand that there is no problem on earth that has no solution. if you know that you have this same problem or any problem that is similar, i will advise you to come straight to this great man. You can email him at: drmutumahouseofsolution121@gmail .com “He always keep his word”

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Rose

Hi moms,
I feel released that I am not alone for feeling anxious and worn out at work and at home with 2 boys (1 & 3 year old) and a husband.
I don’t have time for myself not to mention spending time with my childless friends liked I used to in my previous life. I am thinking about joining some support group or doing something without kids and husband around but I can’t find the time or the motivation to do it. I am hoping that many of you will share with me how you overcome a feeling of guilt for leaving with some friends (my husband and I have no close relatives around) and make time for yourself Our boys demand all of my attention morning and night, going to work is a break from them when I can go to the restroom peacefully. Lately, I don’t find joy in working much, and I think it is time to find a new job. I know a new job comes with so many unknown and uncertainty. At least I know that I know my current job well enough that I don’t find it challenging, fear of leaving my comfort zone but living in a silent desperation.
I’m not sure what will make me energetic again.

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Hi, I was a stay at home mom for 7 years, I have 3 girls. I’ve been back to work for 2 years. I’m now working full time and I’m starting to lose it. I’m yelling at my kids all the time, I can’t keep up with housework, laundry and cooking. My kids eat crap, their behavior sucks and I can’t get them into sports because I can’t leave work to take them. My husband is self employed and he has to work. I want to tell my boss that I want to reduce my hours, but we are just now getting successful and making money. (I’m an assistant in the
Mortgage business). I’m more concerned that I’m losing my family. Help!!!

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Tash

HI everyone, I feel so relieved to have read this post and all respective comments.
I am a full-time working step-mum in Australia and I feel like I am drowning is all sorts of negative feelings and thoughts. From my partner to his daughter to work and all the way through to living in general.
Working full time I’m up no later than 6:30am getting myself ready for work and when miss 4 wonders out (if she isn’t already awake from 4am and refuses to go back to sleep) I don’t even get a good morning just grunts, whining and crying, I have learnt to not ask her ANY questions in the morning, no how did you sleep, no what would you like for brekkie or to even put her slippers on. All of this before I am even showered. I have been “mum” for the past two years, I have never met BM nor has she attempted to even have contact with miss 4 in that time. SAHD I must say he has evolved to the role in leaps and bounds, now I can come home to no dishes and a tidy lounge room, the bed may not be made but the living are is tidy, So why am I so unhappy? I miss out on the best part of their days that’s why. I am always at work and then on weekends I try to catch up on the ‘bigger house chores’ like cleaning the bathroom, doing the washing and sweeping/mopping the floors throughout the whole house. Miss 4 refuses to listen to me and is very defiant towards me, hits me on regular occasions and randomly bites for no reason. Daddy jumps to her defence with – “she is only 4″ “she doesn’t know any better” “lighten up your over reacting” but he does not stand beside me in combat, assisting her in breaking ALL the house rules ie: no eating in the living room, cleaning toys up before bringing more out, not tidying toys in her room or playroom, not eating dinner, getting snacks as she pleases (while I am in the kitchen cooking dinner) trading shoes in for slippers when they get home or after being outside. I feel like daddy is setting me up to fail with his daughter (I have seen her as and treated her as my own for the time she entered our home full time) He has recently made comment (unintentional – I hope) ‘my daughter’!! not ‘our daughter’ or even ‘Miss 4′ I work full time to support them both, come home from work at 5pm and the first thing I HAVE to do is cook dinner and swallow what ever my day was like and replace it with trying to keep my $#!t together. I’m not sure if its for my own sanity or because I feel like a failure for not being around or having a daughter that seems to hate me for it. I feel like I will never get out of this revolving door :(

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Shalinda

Hi everyone! I’m so glad I am not alone in my situation. I am 28 years old and a mother of 3 girls (1,3, and 9). I work three 12 hour shifts a week (Mon, Wed +Thurs) and 1 half day (Fri) as a nurse 40 miles away from home and my husband sells cars so that means a lot of hours. I’m up by 5am and home around 8:30p. I have been feeling so overwhelmed lately and a majority of the time I get very little help from my husband because he is never home. Between the cooking, cleaning, hair days, laundry and errands I have no time for myself We purchased our house 2 years ago and converted our 2 car garage into an apartment. It was a great investment. I was hoping with the extra income I could stay home with our children temporarily but my husband isn’t taking me wanting to stay home too good. For the most part he just thinks I complain too much! I’ve explained several times that 100% of the household responsibility falls on me! I mean he never ever cooks and rarely bathes my 2 youngest kids! And he always tells me he has no patience to assist the kids with homework or school projects! I dread the school year. Now I’m going to have 2 kids in school and 1 still in diapers. I’m ready to pull my hair out now! Running away sounds even better…..I am physically and mentally exhausted…..

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