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How can I not be such a mommy fail in the evenings?


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My babes are 5 and 3 (next week). By the time dinner comes around in the evenings, I am DONE. Just grouchy and tired. I don't want to read. I don't want to play. I don't want to basically do anything with them because I've been at it since 7 am constantly. (and they've been touching me, needing me, talking to me, hanging on me, etc all day!)

 

DH is home by that time, but the primary child care is mine. He's around to read books, play, etc, but the bedtime/story/all that jazz is my baby. His work is pretty high stress right now so he's easily frustrated at night and doesn't have the patience to run the evening routine either.

 

I've tried caffeine. I've tried a short cat nap while they watch a Netflix. How do you get through the final push of the day with younger kids when you are just DONE?

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:bigear:

 

My kids are 6 and 8 but I am just done by evening. I am tired and slow and can not make it and handle more whining.

 

The only thing that has helped (and only a little) in to banish them to their rooms after lunch for a set time (NO INTERRUPTIONS ALLOWED!!) while I sit at the table (has to be the table, if it's the couch then I sometimes don't recover) and read or journal or knit or play a game if hubby is home. I drink a caffeinated beverage and have found on those days I am slightly less tired.

 

But I need more ideas!

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My babes are 5 and 3 (next week). By the time dinner comes around in the evenings, I am DONE. Just grouchy and tired. I don't want to read. I don't want to play. I don't want to basically do anything with them because I've been at it since 7 am constantly. (and they've been touching me, needing me, talking to me, hanging on me, etc all day!)

 

DH is home by that time, but the primary child care is mine. He's around to read books, play, etc, but the bedtime/story/all that jazz is my baby. His work is pretty high stress right now so he's easily frustrated at night and doesn't have the patience to run the evening routine either.

 

I've tried caffeine. I've tried a short cat nap while they watch a Netflix. How do you get through the final push of the day with younger kids when you are just DONE?

It will get better, really. They are so young. I felt that way, too. Make sure they have early bedtimes.

 

I want to gently suggest that you, too, have a high stress job. I'm not sure why it's okay in your family for Dh to get out of the evening routine when he's exhausted and not okay for you. I really think you owe it to your marriage to discuss that. Dh and I have always split up the kids for the evening routine.

 

If that just won't work my only other suggestion is that you read, bathe and have them ready for bed before dinner. Then you will just need to brush teeth.

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My babes are 5 and 3 (next week). By the time dinner comes around in the evenings, I am DONE. Just grouchy and tired. I don't want to read. I don't want to play. I don't want to basically do anything with them because I've been at it since 7 am constantly. (and they've been touching me, needing me, talking to me, hanging on me, etc all day!)

 

DH is home by that time, but the primary child care is mine. He's around to read books, play, etc, but the bedtime/story/all that jazz is my baby. His work is pretty high stress right now so he's easily frustrated at night and doesn't have the patience to run the evening routine either.

 

I've tried caffeine. I've tried a short cat nap while they watch a Netflix. How do you get through the final push of the day with younger kids when you are just DONE?

 

Our evening routine was get in bed and I'll kiss you good night. I couldn't do "all that jazz".

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Can you change it up a bit? Maybe no bedtime stories, but have morning stories. Could they bathe before dinner? However, if your routine *works* and neither kid is getting out of bed, and its not stressful, you're better off dragging through it.

 

If i'm completely done after dinner, ds and i go in my bed to read, then it only takes a minute to tuck him in.

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I'm not the only one! :tongue_smilie::lol: We do have an afternoon quiet time and the lovely little darlings (ahem) are usually in bed by about 7:30. I do rather like the get ready for bed at dinner time idea!

 

And just to clarify, DH isn't hands off, really. It just works best for our family that I handle the bedtime stuff.;)

 

I'm going to be pondering how we can change it up a bit. In the meantime...

 

It gets better. It gets better. It gets better.

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I could have written your post, word for word almost. Except my time starts around 8. I feel terrible because I'm impatient and SO grouchy. By 8 pm I have been on the job for 12-13 hours and I need a BREAK. I think anyone who had been working for that long without a break would be grouchy.

 

I don't have the answer but I do have a sympathy hug! :grouphug:

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His work is pretty high stress right now so he's easily frustrated at night and doesn't have the patience to run the evening routine either.

 

Suggest to him that you switch off nights. Being a mom is high-stress and demanding compounded by the fact that it's pretty much 24/7 and you don't get to "go home from work" at the end of the day.

 

I don't have patience for half of the the people who created the children to wimp out on caring for said children. My advice to those types is, "Buck up, Buttercup."

 

Tara

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I'm not the only one! :tongue_smilie::lol: We do have an afternoon quiet time and the lovely little darlings (ahem) are usually in bed by about 7:30. I do rather like the get ready for bed at dinner time idea!

 

And just to clarify, DH isn't hands off, really. It just works best for our family that I handle the bedtime stuff.;)

 

I'm going to be pondering how we can change it up a bit. In the meantime...

 

It gets better. It gets better. It gets better.

It will, really!

 

When my oldest was a baby dh was in seminary and was really only around for dinner. Right after dinner I handed him the baby and took a 15 minute bath. He often works evenings now and I take a short walk after dinner before he leaves. Would something like that work at your house? Just so you could get a breather before the evening starts?

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:grouphug::grouphug::grouphug: BTDT.

 

My advice to you-

 

Know what you are going to have for dinner by 10 am. Prep it, throw it in a crockpot, whatever, but know, and do what you can in the morning to make that time easier. Stressing at 6 because you don't know what's for dinner sends kids into tailspin. If ou know what it will be, you can get it done earlier because you will be ready, and then you'll know there's a light at the end of the tunnel. Making a weekly menu makes this easier.

 

Now, MY kids went off the wall at five pm like clockwork. *Clockwork*. I knew the time, by the wailing. (My DD17 STILL has a 5 pm bell, and she will admit it to you)

 

BEcause they didn't want to eat earlier than five, so what I did, was give baths at 5. Water calms the savage children. I swear by it. Tantrum? Throw them in a tub. Add bubbles, and a few toys and you have a *happy kid*. IT is magical, I swear.

 

Then, when they are calm, and clean, give them their dinner. Do a fast cleanup, and then let them play quietly, hand them to Dh, whatever you do, and into bed by 8.

 

PLease, I beg of you, listen to this one thing, if you ignore all of that. Routine is your friend. They crave it, you need it, it's not a bad thing, it's not a curse word. It's a blessing, it's freeing and if you set up a routine and stick to it, they will relax into it, and you will have peace in your house.

 

Then, you get some quiet time, and recharge and it's all good. :grouphug:

Edited by justamouse
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:grouphug::grouphug::grouphug: BTDT.

 

My advice to you-

 

Know what you are going to have for dinner by 10 am. Prep it, throw it in a crockpot, whatever, but know, and do what you can in the morning to make that time easier. Stressing at 6 because you don't know what's for dinner sends kids into tailspin. If ou know what it will be, you can get it done earlier because you will be ready, and then you'll know there's a light at the end of the tunnel. Making a weekly menu makes this easier.

 

Now, MY kids went off the wall at five pm like clockwork. *Clockwork*. I knew the time, by the wailing. (My DD17 STILL has a 5 pm bell, and she will admit it to you)

 

BEcause they didn't want to eat earlier than five, so what I did, was give baths at 5. Water calms the savage children. I swear by it. Tantrum? Throw them in a tub. Add bubbles, and a few toys and you have a *happy kid*. IT is magical, I swear.

 

Then, when they are calm, and clean, give them their dinner. Do a fast cleanup, and then let them play quietly, hand them to Dh, whatever you do, and into bed by 8.

 

PLease, I beg of you, listen to this one thing, if you ignore all of that. Routine is your friend. They crave it, you need it, it's not a bad thing, it's not a curse word. It's a blessing, it's freeing and if you set up a routine and stick to it, they will relax into it, and you will have peace in your house.

 

Then, you get some quiet time, and recharge and it's all good. :grouphug:

 

I think I love you. :)

 

I haven't yet mastered all that, but I'm working on it.

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How's your diet?

 

I only ask because I used to be completely out of energy by dinner. I didn't have enough energy left to do anything but sit after dinner. Dishes didn't get done; nothing got done really. It was so hard to force enough momentum to bathe little kids and get them in bed.

 

I changed my diet to one that is more than 50% fruits and veggies, and most of those are raw. Reduced protein servings. Sharply reduced carbs, especially starches and breads. And added in salmon once a week and switched to Dave's Killer Bread Good Seed (for the extra omega-3s), and my energy now lasts until bedtime. We do after dinner chores, including deep cleaning (fighting fleas so I've been vacuuming a room each night including moving heavy furniture). Sometimes we walk to the store to pick up dessert or stuff I need for the next day. And reading two different books to two different kids. It's amazing how much more energy I have.

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Water calms the savage children. I swear by it. Tantrum? Throw them in a tub. Add bubbles, and a few toys and you have a *happy kid*. IT is magical, I swear.

 

:iagree: The 2 year old was having a major fit the other day while I was cooking dinner. I plopped him in the sink next to me and he was the happiest child. It is still pretty warm here so when he gets wound up during the day I take him outside to play in the sprinklers. Playing in the water has saved many a day around our house!

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I think I love you. :)

 

I haven't yet mastered all that, but I'm working on it.

 

:grouphug: Hang in there!

 

It's so hard because you just don NOT have the energy to implement a routine! I know, really I do. But if you do it, and if you get it done early, the routine will start working for you, and it will ease. It's always darkest before the dawn? That applies to this-it's going to be hard work for you to get it done, but if you do, things will ease.

 

Go get some sleep! :D

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Now, MY kids went off the wall at five pm like clockwork. *Clockwork*. I knew the time, by the wailing.

 

:iagree: Ugh, this is SO my kids. The bathtime at 5 is good. Very good. Some days my husband will come home early, somewhere in that 5-6pm hour, and he'll walk in on screaming kids, and me trying to cook dinner and trying NOT to completely let loose with every swear word I have ever heard in my life. (I have been know to say "I hate 5pm!" more than once...)

 

It's hard work. It's lonely work. And it kinda sorta sucks.

 

Have you ever heard of purple crying? I'm certain I still suffer from it, despite being nowhere near newborn-aged. :D

Edited by MrsBrooke
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:grouphug::grouphug::grouphug: BTDT.

 

My advice to you-

 

Know what you are going to have for dinner by 10 am. Prep it, throw it in a crockpot, whatever, but know, and do what you can in the morning to make that time easier. Stressing at 6 because you don't know what's for dinner sends kids into tailspin. If ou know what it will be, you can get it done earlier because you will be ready, and then you'll know there's a light at the end of the tunnel. Making a weekly menu makes this easier.

 

Now, MY kids went off the wall at five pm like clockwork. *Clockwork*. I knew the time, by the wailing. (My DD17 STILL has a 5 pm bell, and she will admit it to you)

 

BEcause they didn't want to eat earlier than five, so what I did, was give baths at 5. Water calms the savage children. I swear by it. Tantrum? Throw them in a tub. Add bubbles, and a few toys and you have a *happy kid*. IT is magical, I swear.

 

Then, when they are calm, and clean, give them their dinner. Do a fast cleanup, and then let them play quietly, hand them to Dh, whatever you do, and into bed by 8.

 

PLease, I beg of you, listen to this one thing, if you ignore all of that. Routine is your friend. They crave it, you need it, it's not a bad thing, it's not a curse word. It's a blessing, it's freeing and if you set up a routine and stick to it, they will relax into it, and you will have peace in your house.

 

Then, you get some quiet time, and recharge and it's all good. :grouphug:

 

 

I think I love you too!! :001_wub:

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I felt like that everyday when my kids were under 5.5. Unfortunatly my dh travels so I never even had him for any help. It helped when they started ps. Now that they are home with me I'm feeling that all again and they are 8 and 9. They both have some special needs and they just wear me out. I'm grateful to be able to homeschool but yes I'm tired. I try to get everyone fed and watching a movie together at night. On nights I do this things tend to go easier. Well until bedtime at least. I wish I had some better advice.

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:grouphug::grouphug::grouphug: BTDT.

 

My advice to you-

 

Know what you are going to have for dinner by 10 am. Prep it, throw it in a crockpot, whatever, but know, and do what you can in the morning to make that time easier. Stressing at 6 because you don't know what's for dinner sends kids into tailspin. If ou know what it will be, you can get it done earlier because you will be ready, and then you'll know there's a light at the end of the tunnel. Making a weekly menu makes this easier.

 

Now, MY kids went off the wall at five pm like clockwork. *Clockwork*. I knew the time, by the wailing. (My DD17 STILL has a 5 pm bell, and she will admit it to you)

 

BEcause they didn't want to eat earlier than five, so what I did, was give baths at 5. Water calms the savage children. I swear by it. Tantrum? Throw them in a tub. Add bubbles, and a few toys and you have a *happy kid*. IT is magical, I swear.

 

Then, when they are calm, and clean, give them their dinner. Do a fast cleanup, and then let them play quietly, hand them to Dh, whatever you do, and into bed by 8.

 

PLease, I beg of you, listen to this one thing, if you ignore all of that. Routine is your friend. They crave it, you need it, it's not a bad thing, it's not a curse word. It's a blessing, it's freeing and if you set up a routine and stick to it, they will relax into it, and you will have peace in your house.

 

Then, you get some quiet time, and recharge and it's all good. :grouphug:

 

I lover too

 

So true though

 

My kids need a routine. Even though ours is wack compared to others it is *our* routine.

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DH is home by that time, but the primary child care is mine. He's around to read books, play, etc, but the bedtime/story/all that jazz is my baby. His work is pretty high stress right now so he's easily frustrated at night and doesn't have the patience to run the evening routine either.

 

 

 

I recently talked to a man who made me feel soooo vindicated:

 

He used to work and his wife stayed home with their small children. He would come home and she'd be sprawled on the couch looking exhausted. He would think to himself, "What's her problem!? I'm the one with the hard job, and she just looks after a couple of kids all day."

 

And then she got a job, and he became a small business owner with evening hours, so he started staying home with the kids in the day.

 

He said that the first day at home was the hardest day of his life.

 

But the second day at home was....the hardest day of his life.

 

And every day since then? Hardest day of his life! He says the kids wear him OUT. So, just know that while DH's do have stressful jobs, I firmly believe that we do, too. I really believe it.

 

The bedtime routine was hardest for me, too. Still is, and mine are 7 and 10 and it gotten easier. I started insisting that DH help out even if it was just 2 nights a week. And we kept it SIMPLE. I only bathed them three times a week, and we did teeth, toilet, pjs', bed, prayers. The bare minimum--no stories or songs. (But even teeth, toilet, pjs, bed and prayers can be overwhelming when they're resisting it.)

Edited by Garga
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It will get better, really. They are so young. I felt that way, too. Make sure they have early bedtimes.

 

I want to gently suggest that you, too, have a high stress job. I'm not sure why it's okay in your family for Dh to get out of the evening routine when he's exhausted and not okay for you. I really think you owe it to your marriage to discuss that. Dh and I have always split up the kids for the evening routine.

 

If that just won't work my only other suggestion is that you read, bathe and have them ready for bed before dinner. Then you will just need to brush teeth.

 

:iagree: With all of it, 100%

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Another option if you decide not to do the baths at five is to save the only time they are allowed to watch any tv to that time. When mine were little we would do outside time from 3ish to 5 ish and then thy would each cyberchase and something else I can't remember while I made dinner. It was the only tv all day and it really worked :-)

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We have purposely always kept the bedtime routine to the bare minimum. Change, brush teeth, kiss good night, go to bed. There are plenty of other times during our day with them home full time to read stories, etc. ... I'm tired by then, and if I drag things out, then they act up ... because they're tired, too. They don't need a story at that point, they need to sleep. And dh has always helped out. Even when he was working 60-70 hours and commuting 60-90 minutes each way. Certainly when we had 3 under 3, it was the only way we survived was working as a team through the busiest times of the day.

Edited by higginszoo
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I struggle with this too. I find that if have an easier time with a treat for me to look forward to once I've put the kids to bed, currently my favorite is a game of Catan on the xbox. We had a pattern going for a while where I put them to bed, but if they got back up within the next hour or so, dh would deal with it. Then I could really relax and not be worrying about whether they were settled. Lately we've been sharing the routine more as the older two have become a little more independent.

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And every day since then? Hardest day of his life! He says the kids wear him OUT. So, just know that while DH's do have stressful jobs, I firmly believe that we do, too. I really believe it.

 

:iagree: As I pointed out to my dh (when my kids were little)... even when he has a hard day at work, his coworkers don't chase him down in the bathroom. Moms have no such luck! :tongue_smilie:

 

:grouphug:

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I am in the same boat at that time. We eat dinner late cause DH gets home late and hitting the park at 5pm is a daily life saver. I also moved my gym workouts to 4:30-5:00pm because they can play in the child watch and I get to recharge on the days we arent at the park. Or today I just kicked them out of the house to play cause they were crazy and I was done. Tv time during that period didn't help like I thought, it made dinner stressful but we often do a short video right before as an extension of quiet-nap time so that I get to recharge a little from the morning and early afternoon. My big saving point Is that DH takes over everything when he gets home but that can be pretty late at times.

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I want to gently suggest that you, too, have a high stress job. I'm not sure why it's okay in your family for Dh to get out of the evening routine when he's exhausted and not okay for you. I really think you owe it to your marriage to discuss that. Dh and I have always split up the kids for the evening routine.

You're very fortunate, then. Really. My DH always did agree that I had a high stress job, and a very important one, but it was still my job. He never helped with bath time, bedtime, toothbrushing, potty-training stuff at all. I made dinner, cleaned up after, then got to the bath/bedtime. I hated it.

 

I'll admit I rarely read at bedtime. It's ok... I did a lot with them during the day! LOL

 

As for DH, I figure it's his relationship with his children he's missing out on in that way, but he is fine with it b/c he develops the relationship in ways he wants. As for the two of us, yep there's resentment from my side. He was never willing to change, so I had to cope.

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:grouphug::grouphug::grouphug:

 

As others have said, it will get better. :)

 

You might rethink the whole bedtime thing. IOW, give them baths and hugs and put them to bed. Maybe your dh can read to the dc while you tidy up the kitchen after dinner, then you can give them baths and put them to bed. They can play quietly by themselves before it's time to gt ready for bed. You don't need to play with them. They are old enough to entertain themselves.

 

What time do they go to bed? Unless your dh comes home very late, I would expect dc so young to be in bed no later than 8. And that's *in bed*, not getting ready for it. Then you'll have at least an hour of alone/adult time.

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My babes are 5 and 3 (next week). By the time dinner comes around in the evenings, I am DONE. Just grouchy and tired. I don't want to read. I don't want to play. I don't want to basically do anything with them because I've been at it since 7 am constantly. (and they've been touching me, needing me, talking to me, hanging on me, etc all day!)

 

DH is home by that time, but the primary child care is mine. He's around to read books, play, etc, but the bedtime/story/all that jazz is my baby. His work is pretty high stress right now so he's easily frustrated at night and doesn't have the patience to run the evening routine either.

 

I've tried caffeine. I've tried a short cat nap while they watch a Netflix. How do you get through the final push of the day with younger kids when you are just DONE?

 

When my three who are age stair-steps were very little, I began purposefully dividing the day to give them time to learn how to spend time NOT needing me. From get up to lunch, I focused my day around them, we played, we learned, we did all kinds of fun activities together. After lunch and naps, was mom time. I expected them to entertain themselves until dinner. I honestly worked at this, and it worked. They became very self entertaining! I was not mean about it, but I was firm. I'd go about my business, cleaning, or cooking, or whatever and if I needed to shop or visit, of course they went with, but I was NOT on "tap" unless it was a serious need, like getting a boo-boo, or being ill. I was present but not at beck and call, if that makes sense.

 

When Daddy got home, he was all pretty much "all their's" until bedtime, at which time I was able to take over without feeling so overwhelmed. I also did the bulk of bedtime, but that was by mutual agreement, because I'm the singer, reader-out-louder. After I had them settled, he'd come do tuck in and chat and pray.

 

Another thing that helped?

Upon the sound advise of a veteran mom, I lovingly let dh know, very, very soon after we first become parents, that I needed some "me" time on a regular basis to stay sane and to be a good role model of healthy self care to our daughter. He was glad to help, so (at first once a week) he would take over for an evening and send me out with a girlfriend, or to walk or go to the library, or whatever I wanted to do. It was one of the smartest things I ever did as a young parent. As time went by and our family increased, I didn't get to go off so often, but he was always very good to see when I was nearing melt down, and shoo me out, or to make it possible for me to get the down time.

HTH

Edited by JustGin
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He was never willing to change, so I had to cope.

 

Obviously what's done is done and can't be changed so I am not criticizing you, but in the interest of helping moms who may be in this situation now, I would suggest that if mom just copes, dad doesn't have to change.

 

Were I in this situation, and my dh were intractable on the issue, I would do one of two things:

 

1) Find a class or club that meets at night and just leave. If I'm not here, dh has to do something, and I think it's a rare husband who would do absolutely nothing and let the kids run wild and endanger themselves.

 

2) If the dh is one of the rare type who is so intractable that he will not care for his own kids, I would hire someone to come clean up from dinner/put the kids to bed. After dinner, I would inform dh that the day shift is off duty and the night shift is on. You could probably find a college student who would do this for $20 a day. It should only take about an hour.

 

I would not just do everything. It's not good for mom as a person to live like mom is just mom and not a person who needs rest, recharging, and recreation.

 

Tara

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Concerning husbands.

 

My husband never changed a diaper. Never gave a bath, nothing. But, I knew what I was marrying. He came from a deeply 'traditional' family, and I don't resent him for it.

 

Also, when my kids were small, he was starting the company and was gone, all day long, and into the night. For years, that was the way we worked. We'd see eachother in bed. And that's OK. It was hard for me-especially when the twins came a long, but you know what, he was working his tail end off for us. And I wasn't going to hand him a kid when he got home. (He did go food shopping for me).

 

What I did was call and tell him to make sure he was home to bring me out to dinner. I made sure the babysitter was reserved, and we'd go out for dinner. I remember one time I called him crazy crying. :D He was home in a half hour.

 

SO, just because they don't give baths, doesn't mean they are bad dads, or bad husbands. My Dh has the most awesome relationship with my kids. He has been the most help dealing with an out of control 18 yo boy, the best to deal with a 15 yo girl and a first boyfriend...he plays with them in ways that I never would, and though he works hard, and long, I know that he really wants to be here, with us, and every chance he gets, he is. He chooses us over everything else, to the point where I have to kick him out to go play with his friends. He has an amazing relationship with all of them, despite not having changed a diaper, or reading a book.

 

We are both equally excellent in our roles.

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I've quit caring.

 

Yes, I am tired at the end of the day and I don't have the energy for bedtime stories and fun things besides a movie.

 

My dh seldom did diapers and baths and bedtime stories. He just isn't that kind of a dad. He is a good dad, but doesn't do those things. He plays with kids and talks to him, but most of that has been on me.

 

So if my kids get stories in the middle of the day and tons of hugs and cuddles, I don't feel too badly if they don't get the typical "Warm bath, three bedtime stories, cuddles, prayers and bed" routine at bedtime. I am very matter of fact about bedtime. My routine is and always has been short and sweet. Pajamas, toothbrush, bed. If they need a longer transition, I sometimes let them look at books for a few minutes before the lights went out.

 

(BTW, I always did baths before supper, or while I was cooking supper they would play in the tub. Afterward I was too tired)

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I have had to move bathtime to earlier in the day. Sure it means that we don't get to go outside after that time, but it is worth it for me.

 

Right now, I prepare dinner ahead or have something easy. Lunches are more like dinner here.

 

Reading was moved to before naptime.

 

(I just had to rethink my plans for the day.)

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I think I love all of you. For those who are struggling, it's nice to know I'm not alone. For those with routines and plans, thank you for sharing. They help. I may only have one DD, but with her daddy 5,000 miles away (approximately), it gets hard. Evenings are really hard. I think we're going to start a routine (a better one, at least) and stick to it!

 

:grouphug::001_wub:

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When my 5 children were little, my husband was in the navy so I was on my own, all day and all night for months. The things that helped me most:

 

1. Routines: These weren't necessarily about strictly set times (ie, dinner at 5), but rather in order: breakfast, make beds, school time, tidy time, lunch time, quiet time, park time, etc.

 

2. Afternoon quiet time: Babies took naps, but the other children had to be on their beds, quiet. Usually with books.

 

3. Easy Bedtime routine: bath only some nights, sometimes all 3-4-5 kids at once in the tub; teeth, pjs, potty, prayers, bed. I agree with PP that bedtime story time is nice and all, but not essential.

 

4. And the thing that honestly helped me the most was to change my thoughts. That last hour before the kids are in bed is going to pass anyway, I'm going to live through it anyway, so why should I be/make myself (and kids) miserable the whole time?

 

I am a big believer in "Take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ." If I didn't corral them, it was so easy to think "I can't do this any more," or "These kids are going to be the death of me," or "I'm so bad...I just yell at them all the time," or any of a hundred other thoughts that focused on poor, pitiful me.

 

The problem is that none of these thoughts are TRUE. So, I learned to substitute and grab onto true thoughts: "I'll get my break AFTER the kids are in bed. And that will be in just 30 minutes! There is a light at the end of the tunnel!" or "These kids are a blessing. Thank you for them, Lord." or "I don't want to be a screamie-meemie Mom. Take a deep breath. Do the silent scream." (A joke in our family: pull hair and scream silently when frustrated. Crazy but it helps!)

 

You are a good mama, not a "mommy fail." Here's to a better evening tonight, and every night!

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SO, just because they don't give baths, doesn't mean they are bad dads, or bad husbands.

 

This is true. If dad never gives a bath or changes a diaper and mom has no problem with this, there's no problem with dad and his parenting/being a good husband.

 

BUT!

 

If mom is feeling stressed out and overwhelmed and needs help and dad refuses to provide it, then there is a parenting/husbanding problem.

 

To me, it sounds like the OP needs help and hubby refuses to provide it. To me, that is not ok. It makes me very sad that women are suffering and at the verge of breaking down and still make all sorts of excuses for why dad/husband doesn't step up. Staying home, raising kids, homeschooling, and caring for the home are very demanding things. When we excuse dad for not helping out because he works hard, we are devaluing what we do. Then we wonder why women are still considered less than in society.

 

IMO, dads who don't respond to moms' (legitimate) need for help are shirking their duties. And it makes me sad that moms put up with it.

 

Tara

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You're very fortunate, then. Really. My DH always did agree that I had a high stress job, and a very important one, but it was still my job. He never helped with bath time, bedtime, toothbrushing, potty-training stuff at all. I made dinner, cleaned up after, then got to the bath/bedtime. I hated it.

 

I'll admit I rarely read at bedtime. It's ok... I did a lot with them during the day! LOL

 

As for DH, I figure it's his relationship with his children he's missing out on in that way, but he is fine with it b/c he develops the relationship in ways he wants. As for the two of us, yep there's resentment from my side. He was never willing to change, so I had to cope.

 

I hear that. Story. Of. My. Life. :grouphug:

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This is true. If dad never gives a bath or changes a diaper and mom has no problem with this, there's no problem with dad and his parenting/being a good husband.

 

BUT!

 

If mom is feeling stressed out and overwhelmed and needs help and dad refuses to provide it, then there is a parenting/husbanding problem.

 

To me, it sounds like the OP needs help and hubby refuses to provide it. To me, that is not ok. It makes me very sad that women are suffering and at the verge of breaking down and still make all sorts of excuses for why dad/husband doesn't step up. Staying home, raising kids, homeschooling, and caring for the home are very demanding things. When we excuse dad for not helping out because he works hard, we are devaluing what we do. Then we wonder why women are still considered less than in society.

 

IMO, dads who don't respond to moms' (legitimate) need for help are shirking their duties. And it makes me sad that moms put up with it.

 

Tara

:iagree: Completely.

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I'm just going to "ditto" this. Exactly this.

Hubby comes from a deeply traditional Italian family. Sure, I could get pissy because he doesn't change diapers or give baths (and I'm not saying that in our years of marriage, I haven't occasionally - I'd be lying), but he is a wonderful husband, father, and provider. When I'm overwhelmed, he doesn't even ask - he just does something. Sometimes it's the dishes, sometimes it's cooking dinner, sometimes it's rough housing on the bed with the 3 year old or taking the 11 year old out to garden or out to lunch when she gets in one of her pre pubescent moods.

He always makes known, to me and the kids, how much he appreciates what I do (and I make sure to do the same with/to him).

Like Mouse, in our home, we all have our roles. Daddy is fun and daddy is firm - daddy makes sure the kiddos listen to Mom; he takes them out to lunch or to a movie, he grounds when it's necessary, he helps the younger learn to be respectful, he kisses, tickles, and torments. I'm okay with that :D.

Concerning husbands.

 

My husband never changed a diaper. Never gave a bath, nothing. But, I knew what I was marrying. He came from a deeply 'traditional' family, and I don't resent him for it.

 

Also, when my kids were small, he was starting the company and was gone, all day long, and into the night. For years, that was the way we worked. We'd see eachother in bed. And that's OK. It was hard for me-especially when the twins came a long, but you know what, he was working his tail end off for us. And I wasn't going to hand him a kid when he got home. (He did go food shopping for me).

 

What I did was call and tell him to make sure he was home to bring me out to dinner. I made sure the babysitter was reserved, and we'd go out for dinner. I remember one time I called him crazy crying. :D He was home in a half hour.

 

SO, just because they don't give baths, doesn't mean they are bad dads, or bad husbands. My Dh has the most awesome relationship with my kids. He has been the most help dealing with an out of control 18 yo boy, the best to deal with a 15 yo girl and a first boyfriend...he plays with them in ways that I never would, and though he works hard, and long, I know that he really wants to be here, with us, and every chance he gets, he is. He chooses us over everything else, to the point where I have to kick him out to go play with his friends. He has an amazing relationship with all of them, despite not having changed a diaper, or reading a book.

 

We are both equally excellent in our roles.

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This is true. If dad never gives a bath or changes a diaper and mom has no problem with this, there's no problem with dad and his parenting/being a good husband.

 

BUT!

 

If mom is feeling stressed out and overwhelmed and needs help and dad refuses to provide it, then there is a parenting/husbanding problem.

 

To me, it sounds like the OP needs help and hubby refuses to provide it. To me, that is not ok. It makes me very sad that women are suffering and at the verge of breaking down and still make all sorts of excuses for why dad/husband doesn't step up. Staying home, raising kids, homeschooling, and caring for the home are very demanding things. When we excuse dad for not helping out because he works hard, we are devaluing what we do. Then we wonder why women are still considered less than in society.

 

IMO, dads who don't respond to moms' (legitimate) need for help are shirking their duties. And it makes me sad that moms put up with it.

 

Tara

 

I'm sorry, Tara, and anyone else, I think this was a misunderstanding. I didn't mean to necessarily mean that I need help in the evenings, it was more of a "my nerves are shot and my kids are making me want to drink" sort of thing. If I had a legitimate need for help, and there have been times when I have just HAD to have him put the precious darlings (aka little monsters, by that time of day:D) to bed for me. When I literally just can't do it, he steps in.

 

I'm just going to "ditto" this. Exactly this.

Hubby comes from a deeply traditional Italian family. Sure, I could get pissy because he doesn't change diapers or give baths (and I'm not saying that in our years of marriage, I haven't occasionally - I'd be lying), but he is a wonderful husband, father, and provider. When I'm overwhelmed, he doesn't even ask - he just does something. Sometimes it's the dishes, sometimes it's cooking dinner, sometimes it's rough housing on the bed with the 3 year old or taking the 11 year old out to garden or out to lunch when she gets in one of her pre pubescent moods.

He always makes known, to me and the kids, how much he appreciates what I do (and I make sure to do the same with/to him).

Like Mouse, in our home, we all have our roles. Daddy is fun and daddy is firm - daddy makes sure the kiddos listen to Mom; he takes them out to lunch or to a movie, he grounds when it's necessary, he helps the younger learn to be respectful, he kisses, tickles, and torments. I'm okay with that :D.

 

THIS. This explains it so very well. This is just how we are.

 

The kids go to bed about 7:30. We are changing today and incorporating our night reading into daytime so we will see how that goes.

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Mine were 14 months apart - so it was always like having twins. They were quiet and slept well, but by the evening, I was done! One thing that I did which helped me a little was I bathed them together with toys, and I sat on the floor and read - that was our reading. I let them stay in until they were prunes. It was weird, but something about me sitting on the cold bathroom floor and them not touching me, just relaxed me. We had rules - no splashing that went in other's eyes or got books wet, no whining or crying - make your own!! I let them pick out a few books each, and when they were older I would read one picture type book and chapters from our Sonlight books. Then they went straight to bed after that - no whining or crying. I tucked them in and sang a song, and we were done. There was no TV or other stimulation after dinner, and I kept the house pretty dark with no overhead lighting.

 

One thing also, we lived about 1 mile from a great park. Any day I could get there, I walked that big double stroller over and let them run around until exhausted. They loved it, and I used it as punishment. Just my 2 cents - too bad your hubbie can't help more. Mine worked alot of nights so I was on my own a lot.

 

ReneeR

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This is true. If dad never gives a bath or changes a diaper and mom has no problem with this, there's no problem with dad and his parenting/being a good husband.

 

BUT!

 

If mom is feeling stressed out and overwhelmed and needs help and dad refuses to provide it, then there is a parenting/husbanding problem.

 

To me, it sounds like the OP needs help and hubby refuses to provide it. To me, that is not ok. It makes me very sad that women are suffering and at the verge of breaking down and still make all sorts of excuses for why dad/husband doesn't step up. Staying home, raising kids, homeschooling, and caring for the home are very demanding things. When we excuse dad for not helping out because he works hard, we are devaluing what we do. Then we wonder why women are still considered less than in society.

 

IMO, dads who don't respond to moms' (legitimate) need for help are shirking their duties. And it makes me sad that moms put up with it.

 

Tara

 

I don't think you are wrong, and, in some instances, it can seem almost emotionally abusive the way some men dump it all and walk away. But I didn't get that from the OP, and I also wanted to provide a counterpoint to the idea that all men should be nimble in all things baby and child. :001_smile:

 

Thinking more about this, even though it was terribly hard when my littles were small, I was honored and loved, never demanded of (by other than the kids!) and made to feel as if MY role was the most important, and that HIS role was in support of mine. So I never felt like a second class citizen because I was home. I felt like a queen because I got to stay home and that he sacrificed so much for our family. We were *both* in the foxhole. It was never a competition.

Edited by justamouse
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Mine is 100% Sicilian. ;)

Snort. My first thought was The Princess Bride movie. Sorry. :)

 

I don't think you are wrong, and, in some instances, it can seem almost emotionally abusive the way some men dump it all and walk away. But I didn't get that from the OP, and I also wanted to provide a counterpoint to the idea that all men should be nimble in all things baby and child. :001_smile:

 

Thinking more about this, even though it was terribly hard when my littles were small, I was honored and loved, never demanded of (by other than the kids!) and made to feel as if MY role was the most important, and that HIS role was in support of mine. So I never felt like a second class citizen because I was home. I felt like a queen because I got to stay home and that he sacrificed so much for our family. We were *both* in the foxhole. It was never a competition.

 

You are much more elequent than I am today! My DH is so very good about this. I am honored. I am loved. I joyfully - and I truly mean that - serve my family...until they make me crazy. ;) It's not a competition, we just have different roles in the family.

 

(and today's been a bit better!)

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