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Motherhood comes with its challenges, and there are times when, despite all the love, it feels like everything’s turned upside down. In this discussion, we’ll explore 15 reasons why moms may unexpectedly feel unhappy or lost, along with actionable steps to bring joy and fulfillment back into their lives.
1. Motherhood Doesn’t Meet Your Expectations
You entered motherhood with rosy expectations, but the challenges come as a surprise, like messes, crying, and an endless to-do list. When reality doesn’t match expectations, managing life can get tricky. When you become disappointed and frustrated, remember that it’s normal, and to deal with it, focus on taking breaks and learning to adapt to the new reality.
2. You Have Unceasing Responsibilities
Being a mom means you’re needed all the time. Something must always be done, whether feeding, changing, or comforting your baby. It’s hard to be needed 24/7 without a break, even for a quick meal or a bathroom break. It’s natural to feel like you’re going crazy after all this. Ask for help from family or friends and create a routine to handle the constant mom duties.
3. You Have No Control Over Your Time
It feels like you are losing control over your time or you’re always on a tight schedule. Spontaneous outings and last-minute plans become a dream as you have to plan everything around your child’s needs and schedule and hope they cooperate with you. To regain some control over your time as a parent, be flexible while planning, which can help with unexpected moments and reduce stress.
4. Your Body Doesn’t Feel Like Yours
It can be distressing when you can’t use your body freely and have to focus on your child’s needs. Your br*asts might leak, you’re always tired, and you carry extra weight. However, things can improve with self-care and accepting that your body has changed, but it’s still a source of strength and love for your baby.
5. You are Not Financially Independent
For many mothers, becoming a stay-at-home mom means giving up financial independence. Relying on someone else for money, even with a supportive partner, feels like you can’t spend as you please and must be mindful of every penny. But open communication about finances with your partner and budgeting can help you maintain some financial control and independence.
6. You are Sleep Deprived
It’s unimaginable to function when you’re so sleep-deprived; you feel hazy and exhausted. Your patience wears thin, and you snap at your loved ones more than you’d prefer. Despite craving sleep, it often feels out of reach. You can get through this phase if you try to get help from your partner or family for nighttime duties, take quick naps during the day if you can, and remember that it gets better as your child grows.
7. You Feel Alone
It’s hard to go out and relax with friends when you have a baby to worry about. Sometimes, it feels like your friends are distant, or your relationships have changed since becoming a mom, making you feel alone in this phase of your life. Making friends with other moms can help you feel less lonely because they understand what you’re going through.
8. Mom Guilt Makes You Frustrated
You feel guilty for various things: working or not working, spending time with your partner, wanting rest, or taking a break. You feel like you are making a mistake for wanting more than being “just a mom,” and you’re a bad mom because of it. It’s tough to enjoy life when you feel like you’re being selfish. Remember, you are a human first, and being a mom doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your own needs and desires.
9. It Seems Like Your Kids Are Particularly Difficult
Feeling like your kids are more complex than others can be physically and mentally tiring and make you doubt your mommy skills. While kids often push boundaries and teens rebel, some children have genuine disabilities or behavioral issues that can make motherhood incredibly challenging. Getting professional help and support from other parents in the same boat is essential. Remember, you’re doing your best, and that matters a lot.
10. Losing Your Own Identity
Before having kids, you likely had your own hobbies, interests, and dreams. But once you become a parent, it’s common to shift your focus entirely toward your children or feel pressured, leaving you feeling lost. Try to understand that being a mom is only one part of your identity, not the whole. Find time for your hobbies, interests, and what you enjoy so you won’t lose yourself while being a mom.
11. Dealing with Postpartum Anxiety
Caring for your baby or child is challenging when you struggle to care for yourself. Studies show that 1 in 7 women experience postpartum depression, so you’re not alone. If you’re facing these challenges, know it’s normal, and it’s important to talk to your doctor for support and guidance.
12. The Pressure to Be a Perfect Mom
Constantly comparing yourself to other moms and feeling like they’re doing a better job can make you hate motherhood when you think you can’t measure up. To overcome this, focus on being kind to yourself, having reasonable goals, and seeking help and encouragement to feel more confident in your role as a parent.
13. The Traditional Gender Roles are Draining
Moms often deal with societal expectations that confine women to traditional roles and stereotypes. You sometimes feel compelled to be the perfect, self-sacrificing caregiver, ignoring your desires and interests just because you are a mom. It’s crucial to break free from these expectations for your sanity.
14. Kids Might Strain Your Relationship With Your Partner
Becoming parents often changes the dynamics of a relationship, and not always positively. You both are tired and busy, leading to taking each other for granted and feeling overwhelmed. Unmet expectations about parenting roles can strain the relationship further. Share with your partner what you expect of him as a father, and try to spend quality time with him whenever possible.
15. Maybe You Weren’t Ready to be a Mom
If you never wanted to have children in the first place, motherhood feels even more daunting. It’s not that you don’t love your children, but rather grappling with a role you never desired. You may feel stuck or having made a mistake may surface, leading to constant questioning and a sense of resentment towards motherhood. Open communication becomes essential in handling these emotions and leading a normal life.
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