Not a good mama!

As you all know, I was expecting baby #2 over the Christmas holidays.  That baby made his arrival on Christmas Eve.  Things have been quite hectic since then and are finally starting to settle down.  It has been interesting getting used to life with a toddler and a newborn but I think I have finally figured some of it out.

One of the things I have been trying to get used to is all of the attention my 3 year old wants now.  She was always so independent and now she demands that we do everything with her, including taking her to the potty.  If I can’t give her the attention that she wants or she is upset because she has gotten in trouble for trying to get the “wrong” kind of attention, she resorts to calling me a “Bad Mama”.  Talk about tearing my heart out and doing a dance on it!  The first time she said it, I was just a few days home and very, very sleep deprived.  Hubby was home and was doing his best to do all the household chores and watch our Princess but she decided it was me she wanted when I was trying to sleep.  I promised her that after a small nap, I would play with her but she was very upset at this answer, and she hit me with that horrible phrase.  I broke out into tears!  Now granted I was post-partum and my hormones were a mess but it hurt so bad to hear it.  It actually made me question if I really was a bad mom!

I know the first week home, I probably could have been a little more attentive but I really felt that I needed to sleep as much as I could while I had hubby home for my physical and mental health.  I now know that by getting that sleep, I was being a good mom.  A sleep deprived mom, can tend to overreact to situations (ie breaking into tears at being called a bad mama).  Now on another note, Bella saw how much it bothered me that she called me that, so now when she doesn’t get her way, I again am a “Bad Mama”.  I have sat her down and explained how it hurts my feelings when she says that, but I am not sure I am getting through to her.

I do get told that she loves me more than that I am bad, but it is still hurtful.  It just makes me wonder what the future holds when she becomes a teenager?!?  I keep waiting for the day that she decides to tell me she doesn’t love me anymore. She has also started hitting and pushing recently and even yelling at me.  I have politely explained that she will not get her way by acting that way and then is promptly given a time out.  I know that this is just a reaction to her upset feelings and we all say and do things we don’t mean when we are angry, but I would love to find away to get her to show how upset she is in a nicer way.  Do any of you lovely readers have any suggestions?

  • Guest

    My daughter was 2 1/2 years old when we brought home our second daughter and we went through the same thing. What I found worked really well was to ask her to help with her baby sister. All while she was helping I would load on the compliments about how great a helper and big sister she was. I found this gave her a sense of importance in what was otherwise a crazy time of change for everyone in our household. I also found that if the baby was crying, but I was with my older daughter I would “ask” the baby to wait while I finished what I was doing with my eldest! Sounds a little crazy, as we know the baby doesn’t understand, but I think it made my older daughter feel like her time was valuable as well, instead of her always having to wait for me to address the baby’s needs. In closing I will say that even after nine months we are still have some moments of jealousy and fights for attention, however watching my now three year old dance and hearing her sister laughing away at it had made it all more then worthwhile!

    • Angela

      That’s some great advice. We do try to get her involved in helping but sometimes she just doesn’t want to. She actually asked me why she has to do everything. LOL. I will try asking the baby to wait while I take care of the Princess. Maybe that will help:)

  • Janice

    I have certainly run into this issue.  My oldest is 3 and youngest is now 7 months.  It is getting better and there is less and less of the “bad mommy” being said. Time helps.  From my perspective, it hasn’t really bothered me that she was saying that because I know that is just her way of saying she is upset with the situation and needs attention.  Hubby is really great about taking the little one when our oldest needs my attention.  I try to take some time out of the day to spend with her each day.  I have found that it is helpful for her and I to take her to daycare twice a week because she gets the independence that is important at this age and it enables me to spend time with the baby (without feeling guilty about not being attentive enough to my oldest) and to get things done (chores, errands, etc.) We both enjoy the time we spend together even more now.  It is truly a balancing act to manage both kids and the household. 

  • Carla

    Great to read about this post as i’m expecting baby #2 in the summer. This is my biggest fear!  My daughter will be 20 months when the baby comes, and i just hope that i’m still able to be there for her as much as possible, when dealing with the new baby and adapting to a new schedule.  SCARY!

  • Brandy_Kubig

    I know this was a while ago and I hope you have things figured out by now… but I too asked my daughter (I also have a 3 year old daughter and my son was born beginning of October) to help with little things like getting me a diaper ect and I also ask my son to wait when doing things with my daughter and I find it works.   I tell my daughter all the time how much her brother loves her, “look he is smiling at you”, “you make him so happy”.  I find this makes her feel so important.  My daughter also resorted to saying mean things to me when she was upset or saying she only wanted daddy… but with a little patience she has stopped that.  I did tell her it hurt my feelings but I did not punish her for this behaviour, I think that would still be her getting the attention she is wanting but in a bad way.  I do really praise her when she does goo things and this seems to have worked.  She hasn’t told me she doesn’t like me in about a month!!!  lol  I know it does hurt though.  My husband also sent my daughter and me out on a few “date nights” just the two of us and that seems to help as well.  They really need to know that they are important too!! 

  • Ikram El Fadil

    I don’t have two children and I’m sure it’s hurtful to be called that by your own child. It’s all crazy hormones. It was interesting to read. Good article!

  • Ikram El Fadil

    I don’t have two children and I’m sure it’s hurtful to be called that by your own child. It’s all crazy hormones. It was interesting to read. Good article!

  • Andrea Gougeon

    I want another but am frightened this will happened I already have times where I feel like a “Bad Momma” hearing my beautiful son say it might be too much for me

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