Parenting at the End of Your Rope
Why Moms Get Overwhelmed
You know the feeling. Your house is a complete disaster despite nonstop cleaning. Or your kids are flipping out in the grocery store and everyone is staring. Or you’re a working mom with an important presentation to make, a toddler who’s throwing up, and no backup childcare. You’re at the end of your rope—a place that all parents have been many times before and will almost certainly be again.
Fortunately, there are tricks of the trade that can help us cope—including hearing from other moms who have been there and lived to tell the tale.
Melanie of Missouri (who asked to keep her last name private), a mom of two-year-old triplets, remembers one moment in particular when her kids were just newborns. “I was rocking our son, Sam, in the middle of the night. He was crying hysterically, and I couldn’t get him to calm down. I was going on very little sleep, if any, and I was also worried he would wake the other two sleeping just feet from us. I was thinking to myself, ‘My God, what have I done? What have I gotten myself into?’”
Moms of toddlers and preschoolers can feel just as harried as moms of newborns. Stephenie Freeman, columnist and mother of two, describes her tougher days like this: “I run myself ragged trying to meet my children’s constant needs. I feel totally overwhelmed whenever one child is pulling on my leg wanting more juice, another child is yelling that he needs help wiping, I’m trying to cook three different dinners because no one likes the same thing, and everyone is crying because they want it now!”
Sleep deprivation, constant multitasking, struggling to balance work with family needs, and myriad other causes can all leave parents feeling frazzled.
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