First Time Parents

03/08/2018

First things first Freya, you need to learn that life isn’t fair and you need to deal with it. The sooner you learn to deal with it, the sooner you will be happy. Okay, yeah, that is bollocks. Yeah, life is unfair but there are things that can be done to help reduce the level of unfairness! You need to look at it like this, it’s all about comparison. There may be others who are better off than you but there are others who are a lot worse off. Like today, Sam was at work and you were at home with Jaime, fair enough, that’s how things are and you wouldn’t have it any other way. You love spending time with her! You are so lucky to get all this time with her. Mothers in America go back to work so soon after having a baby. I’m sure so many of them would do anything to stay at home with their babies but they can’t afford it.

Okay yeah, I get it Freya, you want to be selfish and just think about you at the minute. This is your place to moan about your situation. Crack on. So since having Jaime, you have slept in a different room than Sam so that he gets sleep for work without waking up with Jaime in the night, although it is good for you to have that space at night. So you are with her by yourself, solely looking after her at night and during the day whilst Sam is at work. Then you would have thought that you would get some alone time to yourself when Sam gets home. But no. You don’t. You then end up looking after her for most of the evening. Yes, you are breastfeeding which means you are the only one who can feed her, but that’s not the point. Sam could take her and entertain her for a while whilst you tidied up, had a relaxing bath or just had some time to yourself but it doesn’t happen. Sometimes it does and you really appreciate it but you feel like you are being a pain for asking Sam to take her. In the 16 weeks of having her, there has only been maybe a dozen times where Sam has said, “Here, let me take her while you relax.” Not many guys get to spend the day at work, come in go on the Xbox, have dinner, watch Netflix, and then shower before going to bed. You can go a couple of days without showering because Jaime won’t settle long enough for you to have one when Sam’s not there meaning, he needs to be there and available.

Yeah, he does check if it’s okay most of the time when he goes on the Xbox or he does say to tell him to come off if I need him to. But it would mean more if he decided that he would just tidy up rather than needing to be nagged. You must seem like you are constantly nagging him to do one thing or another. You are doing so well though, Freya. You need to find ways of getting him to do things that aren’t horrible and aren’t naggy. Like, why should you need to be the only adult? It’s like he’s still a teenager needing to be looked after.

Okay so now he’s taken her for a bit so you can have some time to yourself, or in other words get some of the household chores done. But rather than doing what she wants, which is to sit or lay down and play with her mobile, toys, or one of us, he’s doing what he wants which is apparently putting air in his tires. So now she is most likely going to be sat in a car seat in a hot car stuck staring at a headrest. Then, rather than having a happy baby when he gets back, you will be stuck with an upset baby. It's times like this when you just want to run away from all of your responsibilities. But you won’t. You couldn’t leave her. She won’t take a bottle so you can only breastfeed so you need to be here.

You are going to end up resenting him if you don’t do something. Why don’t you write a list of things you would like him to do? It will probably just look like you’re moaning or that it’s a list of things that annoy you about him. What would you put on it though? You would have put down to tidy things away after himself—so if he got out the ketchup for dinner then put it back in the fridge, or if he’s changed a nappy, then to fold it and put it in the bin rather than leaving it on the floor. Just tidy as he goes. Put his clothes away when he gets changed. So if the clothes are dirty, put it in the wash bin, there is one upstairs and downstairs, there isn’t really an excuse. If the clothes are clean put them with the pile of clean clothes or put it away. Just don’t leave clothes lying around the house.

You do get it though, you being at home with her all of the time means that you know her better. You know her cues and signals as to what it is that’s wrong. But not always. There are times when you have no idea what it is that she wants. Rather than getting annoyed when Sam does the wrong thing, you need to appreciate that he is trying and is willing to try... most of the time. Just talk to him okay? See if he has any ideas on how you deal with it. He may not realise just how much you are struggling. You are both first-time parents and it's new to you both.

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