PND & Being a stay at home mum


I recently got asked by a co-worker if I would be returning to work, my maternity leave finished in June, although I never actually received any maternity pay from my work place due to the fact I was so sick during pregnancy and got signed of work. The truth is, as much as I would love to return to work and the extra money would come in useful. I'm just not ready. I told her this and was faced with the 'you will never feel ready to go back to work. I'm glad I went back to work *** has come on lovely now he is at nursery, he loves it and mixing with other babies'. I took it on the chin, and said it isn't about Emily, because technically it isn't. As much as the money would be nice and all of those things, I'm not ready to be away from her, I'm not ready emotionally or mentally. Heck I'm still having medical problems as a result of a difficult labour.
This was a conversation that we had two days ago, and since then it has constantly been on my mind. Am I doing the right thing? Does Emily get enough stimulation at home? Should she be mixing with other babies? Am I effecting her development? It's bothering me that much that I am awake at 11pm, unable to sleep questioning my decision to be a stay at home mum. I'm sure Emily would benefit massively by going to nursery and being around other children, but what can they offer her that I can't? I think that I am doing a perfectly good job, she is learning perfectly, She walked at 10 months, and is confidently saying words. She happily socializes with other children when we go to the park, or soft play. She does painting, play dough, baking and all of those messy activities they would do with her at nursery. The health visitor is absolutely thrilled with her progress and has no concerns. So no I'm not doing the wrong thing, yet again I am second guessing my parenting skills because of somebody else. I would never judge anyone on there parenting skills, so why are people so quick to judge me? 

Sadly for me it isn't about being a stay at home mum or returning to work. I don't have that option. I have PND and serious anxiety issues that I am working on. It would be reckless for me to put myself into a position that I am not ready for, I have come such a long way to ruin it now. I explained this to my co-worked, and she was quick to shrug it off. 'Oh you just have to get on with it' was her response, but it isn't as easy as that. I can't bare to be away from Emily, the thought of it makes me sick to the stomach, and I have tried it. I walked to the shop across the road and it ended up with me having a panic attack. This then had a knock on effect for a couple of days after, raised anxiety, the sick feeling you cannot control, crying over the smallest irrelevant things and not being able to explain why, the loss of appetite, to then over eat and feel horrible about yourself. It is a never ending cycle of guilt, hurt, and pain. It doesn't sound so glamorous and lovely being able to stay at home anymore does it?

So when you next feel like judging someone, please be mindful of what you say and how you say it. I get that everyone has a opinion and is entitled to one, but not everyone has the luxury of being able to leave there child without going through hell, and I know this isn't going to last forever, but for right now, this is me, and my everyday struggle. Just because it doesn't look like I am hurting, it doesn't mean that I am not. I'm am constantly having a battle with myself and it is draining. I wouldn't wish depression and anxiety on anyone. It may not seem like I am doing the right thing to you, but for me this is what I have to do in order to be happy and healthy.  

5 comments

  1. I really believe everyone is different. I didn't leave Indiana properly until she was over one, I couldn't bare to be aware from her. I felt guilty and felt like I had to be with her 24/7. I really wish I didn't go back to work but we had to for financial reasons. I feel so much different with Parker though, as I think I'm used to be away from Indie now. You do what's best and right for you and your family, don't worry what other people think lovely xx

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  2. You are doing an amazing job with Emily. I love reading her monthly updates and it sounds like she is smashing through those milestones! Do what is right for your family xx

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  3. Everyone is different. I'm sure you are doing amazing and Emily is thriving. I went back after 9 months part time and I feel work helps me feel me. I also suffer PND and couldn't imagine being home all the time . I hVe huge respect to those of you who do

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  4. I think these days, your damned if you do and your damned if you don't. She is right about just getting on with it. SHE should just get on with it and mind her own business. The great thing about the world today is that you can do whatever the hell you want and whatever is right for you and its all fine. There isn't ONE set path for everyone.

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  5. What a brave post. PND needs to be discussed more openly.

    You're doing a great job. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. X

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