View Full Version : Feeling Guilty
03-21-2008, 01:06 AM
I know I'm not the only one, but I feel like I am not good enough as a mom sometimes. If I let my mom watch my son (he's 3 mos) for a few hours while I get some errands and housework done, I feel guilty for leaving him. If I don't get all the housework and errands done, I feel like a failure. My husband is working hard all day so I can stay on maternity leave, and I can't even run the house efficiently. If I care for my son all day by myself, I feel like maybe I'm not giving him enough interaction. If I put him in his swing, I feel like I'm abandoning him. I already know that I am going to feel huge guilt when I go back to work.
My husband keeps reassuring me that I am being a great mom, but I am being a constant worrywart now! I know that deep down, we are giving our son a lot of love, comfort, and security but that stupid little voice in my head won't quiet sometimes. Can anyone give me some advice to overcome this?
BTW, this is our first child. We tried for 2 years before I got pregnant so we wanted him very much.
03-21-2008, 01:37 AM
I feel the same way. This is our first child as well. If I leave my son, now 8mths, alone for a little so I can get some housework done I feel guilty as well. I keep thinking I should be interacting with him every minute he is awake. I've felt this way ever since I brought him home from the hospital.
Other than my husband reassuring me I'm a great mom, I have to keep reminding myself that when I leave him to play on his own (whether it’s on the floor with toys, in his jumperoo, or swing) he is learning. Babies learn by interacting with different things and if the parents are always there to help them reach something to talking to them, they are not allowed to explore and learn on their own.
Alone time is very important for infants. They need to look around and discover without mom or dad hovering over their every move. This is how they learn. By leaving my son to play independently, he had learned to scoot around on his bottom. Now if I leave the room to wash dishes, he follows me and plays with his toys in the kitchen (we have a toy basket in every room of the house). It is so much fun for me to watch him play and learn how to work a toy or discover a new way to play with something.
So, when you have to leave him in his swing to get something done, keep reminding yourself that he is learning. He can look around the house at the different objects and colors.
Yes, babies need us to interact with them, but it is just as important for them to have down time where we leave them at their own devices.
Try to keep reminding yourself of that when you have to put him in his swing or playpen to get something done. (I know it’s easier said than done, but whenever I remind myself that he is learning even without me it seems to make me feel better).
03-21-2008, 12:05 PM
You sound like you're a great mom. You have love and concern for your baby. month old babies don't need constant interaction when they're awake. I think if you try to do that it can lead to over-stimulation, crankiness, etc. When your baby is older, both of you will enjoy playing and reading together much more. You're so lucky to have family nearby to help you out when you need to get things done. The relationship that he will develop with his grandparents is also very important and beneficial.
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