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Need Advice: How to Manage Life as a New Mom

I'm a new mom of a three-month-old baby who is struggling with trying to balance my marriage, baby, full-time job, and the house and its myriad responsibilities.

I realize this is an age-old struggle that moms have been trying to tackle for a very long time, but I'm desperate for some advice.

How do you moms do it all? I can't even find time to make dinner anymore! After I pick up my daughter from daycare, I feel incredibly guilty if I don't spend every minute with her until she goes to bed ... thereby avoiding any household chores. I even feel guilty taking her out on errands with me when I could be playing with her at home.

Am I crazy?!

And dare I ask if I should ever expect to have time to myself again?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 9:24 AM on Apr. 27, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (12)
  • She is 3 months so you shouldn't feel bad. your providing for your family. You need to make time for you and the things you want and need to do. Have you thought about maybe pre-making things so all you have to do is put them in the oven? That is what I did when I had my baby. On the weekends I would make up freezer friendly foods so all I had to do was toss them in the oven so we still had home cooked meals. You can sit your daughter down and vacuum really quick or clean up the kitchen. Your guilt is going to consume you and soon your house will too. She is not aware of how much time you spend with her at night as she is to young. It will get better and you still need you time. Put her down early and take time out to relax. Its always hard when you have a plate full but start out small and then on your days off do the majority of your house stuff while she is asleep. Don't feel bad for wanting time to yourself.

    Answer by brailynsmama08 at 9:29 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • You need to relax, hard I know. I use to put the baby in a snuggly or sling and wear her as I did household chores or ran errands. You don't have to spend every moment with her but if you feel like you have to this might help you . You can also sit her in the kitchen with you as you cook dinner and just talk to her, she will enjoy just being near you. You will find ways to make life easier for yourself, you are s till very new at it so give yourself a break and try to enjoy this time with your baby.

    Answer by BusyBeesmom at 9:31 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • I'm a SAHM, and the problem you're having is why I am... I'm not telling you to not work, I'm just saying I couldn't do it.. I babysat out of my home for a few yrs and still felt guilty so I stopped doing that. I came to the conclusion that I had our boys and made a commitment to them. They didn't ask to be brought into this world so it's my responsibility to teach them everything they need to know in order to be strong people.
    Your feelings are normal, it comes with loving your baby with everything you have inside. Don't kick yourself for doing what you have to do, maybe just try to change things around a little.. Maybe, if you have an SO, OR Hubby, he can help. Sit down and make a plan, then you can be freed up and not feel like your world is closing in on you...

    Answer by 4x4mum at 9:32 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • Try not to do it all alone.
    I make sure my DH does his fair share! I do dinner but DH does a lot of the cleaning and the dishes... we both do laundry.
    Also carry her around in a sling or carrier... you can spend time with her and get things done at the same time.
    Now that my son is older I will pull up his highchair while I cook and talk to him while I make dinner. Or let him "help" do laundry and give him a sock or something to play with while I fold the clothes.

    Answer by AmiJanell at 9:33 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • Its not easy! You are not crazy or alone. If you are not careful and don't s;ow down you're going to overload your mental and encourage baby blues!!! Set a schedule, make a timed list and stick to it! Your relationship with your daughter won't be ruined until your first arguement. If you can't play with her at home because of errands, find ways to bond with her while your together. Even just holding her and reading or singer to her is all she needs right now. You don't have to be with her every waking moment!!! KUDOS for wanting to do it all and then some! Again don't over do it and ask for help when you're over whelmed!!!! You're a new mom so no one expects you to be wonder woman!!!! As for marriage tlc. Send your hubby sweet inuendo's and make time for him when YOU aren't exhausted, keep informed of everything your feeling. You have a lot on your plate but it can be managed. Good luck and enjoy being a new mom! STOP STRESSn

    Answer by ladyd6280 at 9:37 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • I understand completely, I have three kids and two are twins and I worried before I had them that I would not be able to bond with them as individuals. Here are some suggestions that i thought of while reading your question. Errands can be a great bonding time. I love taking my daughter to the grocery store. I will play games with her, talk to her, teach her things as I would pick them up and tell her new words. Even when they are infants, just seeing your face having that interaction is what they love and need. I would talk to my infants and say things like..."I am thinking on spaghetti tonight, what do you think?" At home my 18 months old help with with dinner and chores. They love it! When they are infants they got to spend time with daddy while I cooked and I didn't feel guilty because they need that time with daddy.

    Answer by AmyLynn5398 at 9:38 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • It is hard, no doubt. I a SAHM too and I still have a hard tome accomplishing everything in a day. My hat is off to you for finding a way to make it all work while working full time. Are you able to work fewer hours a week?
    I let house work be the last thing on my plate. Ofcourse things are not disgusting but I'm not anal about everything being picked up. Me and DH are trying to find time and have understanding for the lack of relationship we have right now. Not that we're giving up on it, just trying to work on it a little each day.
    I've asked him to help out with things around the house on his day's off. I've also asked him to take over the finances, he's yet to do it.
    I got into a soup making frenzie a little while back. I found some home made soup recipes that can be frozen and are chalk full of everything healthy! On a night when I know time will be tight I pull out one of the soups or stews I've made.

    Answer by AmandaH321 at 9:39 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • As far as doing chores and running around with your little one, it's something that needs to be done. Make it fun for her. She's so young at this point that you don't have to do much, but my kids love coming to the grocery store with me. They've gotten to know names of stores now and have their fav's.

    Answer by AmandaH321 at 9:40 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • Are you a single mom? It's never possible to do it all... every day you'll have to decide one or two things to let slide and be ok with it... maybe one day you won't sweep the floors, another day you won't lie around with your baby watching her play on the floor, another day you'll spend some of your work day sneaking in some on-line shopping... Don't be afraid to ask people for help or to accept it when it's offered. Don't feel guilty if you need to do things around the house.. just get a good sling or wrap and bring baby along... she feels close to you then.. The "me" time is really important, and I think most of us know that and struggle to find out how to get some... I still haven't. We have 2 kids and my husband is a very hands-on dad and great husband, but still both of us find it hard to take any time just for ourselves... But try. If a friend offers to watch your baby for a couple of hours, say thank you and go!

    Answer by EmilySusan at 9:42 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

  • You and your spouse need to have a heart to heart chat. Divide up chores (maybe switching every two weeks. Perhaps you can cut something our of your budget so you can have someone come in and clean every two weeks. Look into a nannyshare, instead of daycare. No one ever died from being attacked by dustbunnies. Cook on the weekends; take out that old crockpot you received as a wedding present. I have TNT recipes that can be on the table in 20 minutes or less; feel free to contact me.

    Answer by rkoloms at 11:42 AM on Apr. 27, 2009

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