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Thread: Feel like a bad mum

  1. #1

    Unhappy Feel like a bad mum

    I know im beoing stupid...but i cant help but feeling like a bad mum some days. Before DD was born i had my heart set on breast feeding....and i tried as soon as she was born. Midwife said i was going great and DD was getting food. I was on a high, thinking wow i can do it, only come 2 days later i had a screaming baby that wouldnt settle, that was starving cos she was geting nothing. I had nurses forcing me to BF when i clearly kept saying she was getting nothing and give me formula for her....but no.. i was wrong.. they were right. I got home thinking right ill give BF another go... again no luck.

    I felt i had failed to give my bub the best food in the world. A failure i labelled myself. So many other mums can do it... why couldnt i. My milk came in and i tried and tried, but it was clear. DD, she wasnt happy with it and i had to stick to formula. Not what i wanted and not what i still want.

    Then i have the days/nights where she will cry. I try everything, feeding, bath, change nappy, burping, rocking, walking etc. She still cries, then screams, gets all wet from sweating and tears and to the point where her screams are hoarse. Again i feel like a bad mum cos i dont know what is wrong, although i have tried everything i still feel like ive failed.

    Or theres the times i think DD is sick of me. She sees me 24/7 and i think she is bored of me....cos as soon as daddy gets home she smiles and wants to be with him (i know she is only 2 months old...but its like daddy fixes everything and mum is just a b!tch and leaves her crying).

    I know im a good mum I give her all i can, but alot of the days i feel like a bad mum or ive failed in some way...

    Please... can some one put me at ease!!!!!

  2. #2


    Oh kim. First of all a HUGE hug for you

    Now, next up - YOU ARE NOT A BAD MUM!! i have had days where my babies cry and cry for no reason. I went through what you are feeling when Xander was a couple of months old. I had had alot of probs Bf, and just stopped, and he didnt like FF. Your beautiful daughter IS NOT sick of you! I dont know why, but Daddy always seemto get the big smiles (Anneliese does it with me too - XH gets the huge smiles!)

    Can you get out more during the day?? Maybe we should have a meet up once a week orsomething in the city, i know having something to look forward to always helped me get through the hard times. Can you join a play/mothers group locally?

    And when DH gets homes at night, once ortwice a week, have an activity for youself. When iwas in WA, me and my mother used to go to the foreshore and have a cuppa while the sun set. We would chat about our weeks, child free (she still had 5 at home at that point). And i played indoor beach volleyball as well. So i also had time to myself, to feel like a "normal" person.

    Im sorry i cannot give you any more advice (i just cant think right now!) but you know im here to chat if you need to vent or anything. ok?

    Take Care,
    Simone xx

    ETA - and all i used to do when Xander would notstop crying (he would be fed, bathed changed cuddled and put to bed and he would cry non stop) i would leave him. BEcause picking him up just made me more upset, and the babies' pick up on your moods, and if you are stressed, they just cry more, and you get more upset etc etc... Its a vicious circle. HTH

  3. #3


    You are doing a fantastic job. Having a baby is sooooo hard. Is this your first? Don't feel bad about the BF'ing thing. Our DS (5 months) was badly jaundice when first born (it lasted 3 months) and as a result my milk was delayed coming in which made feeding really hard. I struggled for the first 3 months and didn't enjoy it at all. I've constantly worried if my baby gets enough too. Partly because I'm a first time mum and secondly he doesn't feed very long at all. Anyway, I always thought about going to bottle feeding and felt horrible for feeling that way given how everyone promotes BF. Whilst I still think it's the best if it works, it doesn't always work for everyone and that's nothing to feel bad about. I was lucky because it did get easier and my DH was great reassuring me that plenty of babies are bottle fed and they're perfectly fine. YOu need to do the best thing for her and that's to help her put on weight and be healthy. The crying thing is hard as well - especially since they can't tell you what's wrong. I read some really good advice somewhere on here about doing the following things:
    1. Check if they are hungry
    2. Check the nappy
    3. Check if they are hot or cold
    4. Check if they have a pain in their tummy
    And if all these things are fine then sometimes they just cry. It's frustrating but they do have a peak crying time and then start to settle down. I feel like our DS has only just started coming out of his whinging phase and seems much happier now. The other thing is she may have reflux. We used to give our DS mylanta (1 ml) after a feed and that seemed to work. Lastly, your DD is NOT sick of you. Babies adore their mothers. Sometimes they just need a different face for variety and if you're feeling stressed, it may be making her stressed so when DH comes home not feeling stressed, she may feel a bit more relaxed with him. I know my DH is much more calm then me and our son often looks more relaxed with him. I see it as a great chance to have a break and do something for myself - which you must do.
    I feel like I've rambled on here. I hope some of it helps. Good luck and remember we all have days. I had a meltdown just a couple of days ago. We're doing the hardest thing in the world here so we need to give ourselves some credit!

  4. #4


    Thankyou both for yur encouraging words. Both mean alot to me

    Yes it is my first and i guess i over react some times. I just feel so bad letting her get so worked up, and a few have told me: If im stressed or upset then Chelsea will pick up on it as well. Goog point about babies needing to see a variety of faces. She does settle and seem happier when she sees daddy and i guess thats because she is asleep when he goes to work, wakes to me. Then she doesnt see any one else until 7pm when DH walks through the door.

    Simone-I go to mothers group on a Friday, it only started last week, but i dont feel like i fit in. Alot of the mums are older....or i have to say a bit stuck up? I met up with a new friend yesterday and had a ball....was so good to get out. Her little girl entertained DD (when she wasnt sleeping) and i had the chance to socialise with an adult!!! I'd love to get out and meet people...and your right, having something to look forward to helps. I have just put DD to bed and all i can hear is screaming, but im determined to not go in much as it break my heart :frown:

    If only my mum and all my old freinds weren't back in NSW id be right!!

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Pakenham, Victoria


    Kim- you are doing all the right things, i felt so bad when i had Madison and i could not b/f her, i cried for days but now i look at her and she is a happy girl.

    I know that we have said we should meet up, you tell me a time and day and i will be there, next thursday there is a few meeting up in pakenham, let me know if you would like to come.

  6. #6


    AWW bugger busy next Thursday... but THANKS so much for asking

    Hopefully soon we can meet up, next week im pretty busy with vets and dr's

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Pakenham, Victoria


    thats ok, just let me know, thursdays are great for me, madison is in childcare

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Blue Mountains


    Kim *big hugs* to you. I don't have much more to say than the others.. just wanted to suggest using a hugabub to try and settle her when she's so upset? I found I could recline in a chair while DS was in the HAB and we would both get a bit of sleep.

    Hope you feel better about everything soon.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Nov 2005


    Oh Kim ..hugeee hugs to you!. First of all there is so much more to being a mum then breastfeeding.

    Your story sounds seriously like a mirror image of mine!. I also did not BF , had issues with the nurses and left the hospital with Kaitlyn on formula. I do wish I could have breastfed but it was not meant to be for Kaitlyn and I . And believe me she seems no worst off for it!.

    Kaitlyn was also very very unsettled for the first few months....would never sleep more then 45mins during the day and to get her to sleep was such a HUGE job.I would be soooo stressed out sometimes when DH got home and he would take her and walla happy baby!. But I dont think it is because they are sick of us ..just that we may be a little stressed after the days events and daddy is nice and fresh!. I say take advantage and let Daddy do the settling when he is home ...nice break for you!.

    If you enjoy walking go for walks as the motion will settle your DD and really helps you feel better. I used to walk HEAPPPPPPSSSSSSSSS...just to see the outside world!.

    try and persist with mothers group..maybe you need a different group if you found it uncomfortable. I found it to be such a saviour for me especially the first few months as it gave me a reason to get up and get out ..have a coffee and talk to other mums in the same situation as me. Just remember we are all different as people and as mums are the best mum your DD could ask for so always remember that. Try not to compare yourselve to the other mums( I am guilty of doing this to ).

    I know you have probably been told this but the truely do seem to settle down around the 3-4months. Now this may seem like a lifetime away for you (did for me) but it comes around quickly.

  10. #10
    Kirsty77 Guest


    Ditto again here.Both my girls are f/f. With Gemma I had a mini breakdown when I realised that I just couldn't b/f her and when I had the same issues with Jasmine I ended up with a bit of PND. When in hospital with Jasmine I had a horrible midwife who MADE me b/f even though Jasmine would get so distraught and cry for hours and not feed cause I had nothing to give her and she couldn't latch on(i have a deformed nipple). I ended up with a brillant midwife the night before I left who said to me the key to having a bub is 'happy mummy then you have a happy baby' and put Jasmine on formula straight away to give me a break. I simply cannot b/f. Others can with ease, others have to work at it, I cannot at all. Whatever the reasons why you don't b/f, if you f/f you are NOT a failure. Its the biggest thing that we beat ourselves up over, that and having c/s's(Ha I have had 2 of them!LOL) You are a brillant mummy hun. Your first bub is always the bumpest. Gemma used to cry and cry as well. We used to try everything to settle her. In the end I would end up so upset and cry. Corey and I were both at our wits end. Your so not alone hun. I used to think of all the other women in the world who were also trying to settle/feed their bubs in the early hours. I also think that my Daughter Gemma gets sick of me, even now she gets super excited when Corey gets home. But you know what that is natural for them to want to be with their daddies when they get home, I'd be worried if she didn't!LOL

    Hang in there hun, the first 6 months I reckon are the roughest. Just remember your her number 1 person in her eyes...........she loves you and needs you!

  11. #11

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    The Hawkesbury


    Aww Kim you poor pet.
    All i can say is i went through exactly what you are.

    I planned to breastfeed Jesse until he was 6 months old. I tried but all he wanted to do was feed otherwise he'd cry and would only sleep for half an hour to an hour at a time. After a few days of this i was so warn out mentally and physically, my nipples were bleeding and covered in blisters, so i asked DH to go out and get some formula. He was then content from his feeds. I still wish that i was breastfeeding him and i envy all those who can but i tried and it just didnt work for us.. i had to do what was best for my little boy and i know he'd love me just as much either way. It doesnt mean we are bad mothers or have failed our babies at all, as we both had our babies best interests in mind and just wanted them to be happy. I think their happiness is the most important thing in the world and id do anything it takes for that.

    Regarding the screaming etc.. Jesse would do that at least 3-4 nights a week (sometimes more) until he was about 2 months or so. I think they refer to it as the Witching Hour? He would get all hot and sweaty (he sweats really bad as it is) and so would we. There was nothing myself or DH could do for him.. we tried absolutely everything. In the end we just had to let him cry it out and he would fall asleep.

    Jesse always gets so excited when DH gets home from work also, but i look at it as that, i get to spend all day with Jesse while my DH misses out, so im glad at least that Jesse is happy to see him. Trust me, in another few months.. (at Jesse's age now).. they may love their daddies, but it's their mummy's cuddle they want when they get hurt (or have a needle).

    Kim, the first few months are the hardest i believe (well so far) they brought me to tears many times, but it will get easier. Though she cant say it yet, Chelsea loves her mummy more than anything. Please dont think you are a bad mother.. from the sounds of it you would do absolutely anything for her and in my opinion thats what makes you a great mother.
    Will DH give you some time to yourself when he gets home from work? DH will always offer to look after Jesse if i need to pop out anywhere or have a lay down and i think thats what keeps me sain.

    We're always here for you and so am i if you ever want to talk im on msn [email protected].

    All the best my dear

  12. #12

    Join Date
    Feb 2004


    Oh Kim, almost 2 years ago I probably wrote an identical post to yours

    I too had breastfeeding issues (my milk didn't come in at all) and I felt like a failure for such a long time. A very good friend of mine once told me that I didn't fail Alexzander because I did the best for him with the circumstances thrown at us. Which would have been better, a little boy starving or a thriving healthy little boy? And the only way I could make him a thriving healthy little boy was to give him formula.

    I felt i had failed to give my bub the best food in the world. A failure i labelled myself. So many other mums can do it... why couldnt i.
    Remind yourself that everyone is different and that no other mum can do what you do for your baby.

    As for the crying, being a first time mum is hard & being a bub who can't communicate is hard too. It is not easy to figure out what a baby needs when they have no way to express themselves other than crying. It's purely & simply guess work. Even now with Zander talking I find I have to guess at a lot of things still. It definitely does not make you a bad mum at all.

    Or theres the times i think DD is sick of me. She sees me 24/7 and i think she is bored of me....cos as soon as daddy gets home she smiles and wants to be with him (i know she is only 2 months old...but its like daddy fixes everything and mum is just a b!tch and leaves her crying).
    Awww hun, it breaks my heart when mums feel like this, cos I've been there too & know that feeling. Remember daddy is somewhat a novelty, mummy is home all day so when a new face arrives of course bub will get excited. As she gets a bit older, you'll see that mummy is the one that has to fix a sore tummy, or kiss a skinned knee better, or give cuddles when she is afraid. Mummy will more than likely be the one that she runs to first when she needs help or feels sick. Sometimes nothing else will help other than a mummy cuddle and that's when you fall in love so much more.

    Kim you are doing a brilliant job & every mum I know has been through these feelings, I think it's part of the job description. Motherhood is not easy and if any mother tells you it is, she's either lying or in denial

  13. #13


    THANK YOU sooooo much ladies. Im overwhelmed.....your words of encouragement have ment a great deal to me. In fact everytime i read a post i get tears.

    You have all indeed made me feel like a good mum....and i have been telling myself that. BF isnt the be all and end all....and my DD is growing..(nice fat cheeks cute) and gaining weight, not yeh im doing it right

    As for seeing daddy, i never looked at it the way you have all said thanks for the bigger picture view.

    I really dunno how id cope if i wasnt on a forum with such a great bunch of ladies who care. If i could give u all hugs i would.

    Kelxx FYI i have added you on msn.....thanks

    You have all made me feel like a god mum now

  14. #14

    Join Date
    May 2004


    Oh Kim you are a great mummy! I had heaps of trouble BF DD too and felt terribly guilty at putting her on formula but she is a happy healthy rugrat now (and I'm so far managing to BF DS too!). Motherhood is a wonderful yet strange thing I think. The feeling of responsibility can be so overwhelming at times. But you DD is getting food and that is all that matters, no matter how it comes. Yeah BF might be great but it certainly doesn't always work out and you just do what you have to do, there is absoloutly nothing wrong with that at all.

    DD used to scream heaps too and DS has only in the last 4-5 weeks settled down from the evening cries too. In actual fact I think often he was just tired and just wanted to be put down and go to sleep, too much stimulation and overtiredness was making him grumpy!

    I tried a formalised mothers group a few times and hated it too. I met a lovely woman one day in the doc's waiting room. Her DS was 12 days younger than DD and we just got chatting, ended up exchanging numbers and formed our own great little mums group. It has been the best thing for me. I've found that it's easier once you have a bit of a chat to another mum in a park, shop or somewhere and you might get along well and have something in common (babies at least!) to then just pluck up the courage and suggest meeting up again sometimes. It's hard to do but I find that the other mum usually is so happy at the suggestion too and probably going through exactly the same feelings as you too.

    And every bub is happy to see their dad I reckon! And they are so more relaxed too - just a change, and hey, it would be bad if they weren't so happy to see them!

    You will be fine, doing an awesome job. Keep up the good work.

  15. #15

    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Berwick, Melbourne


    Oh Kim, you poor thing, you should have given me a call you duffa! Firstly, you are definitely not a bad mum, you are great with Chelsea. Secondly, BF is not the be all end all. I wasn't BF and (even if i do say so myself), I turned out ok!! You should definitely not doubt your abilities. Guess what? I've finished work now (thank goodness), so we may (hopefully) be able to find more time to catch up - it has been far too long (can't believe Chelsea is 8 weeks already!). I'll email you, but please don't hesitate to call me if you need someone to talk to. I'm only around the corner. xx

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