It’s taboo – but it’s reality. Simple as that.
Think about it. A working mum; busy with meetings, deadlines, group lunches, after work drinks, office banter – suddenly finds herself pregnant. The lead up to the impending arrival is half exciting, half a blur. You have your belly rubbed and everyone, I mean everyone (including the delivery man) is trying to guess the sex or tell you that you’re carrying high/low, big/small. The abundance of advice is overwhelming. I remember actually taking notes – hilarious.
Then one day you leave skipping (or in my case waddling with back and pelvic pain) into the wilderness for the next adventure. The unknown is daunting. It’s bloody scary actually, but you think to yourself, it’s time right?! It’s what we are meant to do?
Once the hype dies down, the visitors start to stop and you pack away those congratulations cards - the life of a Stay At Home Mum sinks in and reality strikes. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adore my children, but some days it gets lonely - it just does.
I personally only allow myself one full "home" day per week, any more and I’d need a referral to the nuthouse. It’s okay for some, just not for me. I need to be out amongst it, to interact with others and breathe some fresh air.
So, to save your sanity and ensure a happy well-balanced life, here are my suggestions to overcoming the loneliness.
1. Mothers group.
Hands down the best decision I made was walking through those Health Centre doors. I remember ummming and ahhhing whether to go. The horror stories I’d heard, parents comparing their kids, making you feel inadequate if you were formula feeding or co-sleeping (or whatever you do…) and the thought of just not connecting with anyone… it was enough to turn me off. Well, almost. After pacing the pavement I went, and boy was I glad I did. I met five of the most wonderful Mums and two years on and we are still the greatest of mates.
2. Reach out.
There is so much support available. Sometimes it’s a little overwhelming to be honest. Where do I go for this or for that? The Health Centre to the helplines, the forums to the online groups, it’s there in abundance if you look for it. I always found the best place to start was my mummy friends or the health centre. But honestly as a Mum we do need to trust our own gut, regardless of what anyone says. We know our babies better than anyone. Don’t be scared to ask for help. Whether it’s a friend, family member, neighbour or a complete stranger… anything they can do to make your life a little easier is worth it in my opinion.