Ever found your voice reaching a decibel you didn’t know possible, while simultaneously crying with exhaustion and feeling all the guilt for flying off the handle at your kids? Yep. Samesies.
A mum meltdown
Parenting will challenge every single cell in your body at times, with a hefty hangover of mum/dad guilt that can last an entire lifetime. YAY!
Instagrammer Laura Bentley took to social media as she coped with the fallout from one of these mum moments/marathons. Laura has four children and her confessional post provides a relatable glimpse into the feelings all parents wrestle, trying to do the best by their kids as they cling to their own sanity.
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Today I hated my kids. I yelled at them. I swore as loud as I could. I slammed my door. Then I sat on the ground and I bawled my eyes out. . . I scared them. I saw it in their eyes. I couldn’t help it and for the first time ever I didn’t have that immediate rush of guilt for the way I’d acted. In that moment I hated them. I hated them and I hated being the person in charge. I hated the responsibility of having kids and hated being the one that has to do everything for them. I cried so hard and so loud, I had an instant headache and heartache. . . As I sat on the ground crying I remembered back to when I found out I was pregnant with Will. I remembered throwing myself on the bed and crying as hard as I cried today. Back then I was overwhelmed at the thought of becoming responsible for another human. Today I cried because I am overwhelmed that I’m responsible for 4 small humans, one grown human and I feel burnt out and under appreciated. . . Yes, I’m so lucky and blessed to have children. I’m aware and grateful. . . I’m also human, there’s only one of me and I’m exhausted. I feel like I’m expected to fulfill everyone else’s needs and somehow just get past the fact that no one even listens to me. There’s only so much I can give before I break and turns out, today was the day. . . Safe to say that I’ve failed mum life today. My kids deserve better. . . Everyone always asks how I do it. Believe me when I say that even though I get things done, I don’t always do them well.
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“Today I hated my kids,” she wrote. “I yelled at them. I swore as loud as I could. I slammed my door. Then I sat on the ground and I bawled my eyes out.”
So far, so many of us.
“In that moment … I hated the responsibility”
Momentarily, Laura crossed that possibly familiar line where she didn’t quite recognise herself, and her kids twigged pretty quickly … and kind of freaked out a little.
“I scared them,” Laura writes. “I saw it in their eyes. I couldn’t help it and for the first time ever I didn’t have that immediate rush of guilt for the way I’d acted. In that moment I hated them. I hated them and I hated being the person in charge. I hated the responsibility of having kids and hated being the one that has to do everything for them.”
These fleeting moments are the rock bottom of parenting, often lasting for only a second or two, but playing over in overwhelmed parents’ minds for days (weeks, months, years?!) to come.
Listen to Kinderling Conversation:
“I cried so hard and so loud, I had an instant headache and heartache,” Laura admits.
“I cried because I am overwhelmed that I’m responsible for four small humans, one grown human and I feel burnt out and underappreciated.”
“There’s only so much I can give before I break”
While Laura – who has just experienced the kind of mummy meltdown many of us have gone through – thanks her lucky stars for who and where she is, gratitude cannot magically erase exhaustion, the hyper-vigilance parents operate under or the mental load of nurturing wee children to adulthood. That #blessed hashtag is simply not enough, sometimes.
“I’m so lucky and blessed to have children. I’m aware and grateful. I’m also human, there’s only one of me and I’m exhausted. I feel like I’m expected to fulfil everyone else’s needs and somehow just get past the fact that no one even listens to me. There’s only so much I can give before I break and turns out, today was the day.”
While Laura concluded that she’d “failed mum life today” and that her “kids deserve better” but she’s still actually a winner because she’s not only pushing on, she’s talking about the tough stuff to destigmatise feelings many, many parents experience.
Everyone has these days
Other parents were quick to relate their own mum meltdowns and dark dad days, in support of Laura’s nightmare day.
“I love your posts and how they show the honestly of motherhood, no bullshit. You’re a great mum and defiantly not alone in how you feel.”
“I can relate to this so much! Always find it refreshing to see posts about the not so perfect side of parenting: we’re all human at the end of the day. Doesn’t mean we’re not grateful.”
“You are not alone. I get days like this too. Being a Mum is so hard and yes, we are only human. We break down sometimes. You’re still the best Mum in their eyes.”
If a parent you know is consistently finding things super-tough, consider getting in touch with PANDA. They’re on standby, ready to support mums and dads through difficult times.
This post originally appeared on Babyology.
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