I Hate Being a Mom, What Now? – 18 Validating Reasons Why & What to do
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With the endless days, high expectations, and loss of identity mothers go through, it’s easy to understand why we all hate being a mom sometimes. So if you’re struggling in motherhood and feeling like you hate being a mom, know you’re not alone.
These 18 validating reasons why you might hate being a mom will help you understand why you might feel this way. Along with steps to help you figure out what to do and how to move forward from here.
- Motherhood Wasn’t What I Expected.
- In Came The Mom Guilt
- Is it Normal to Hate being a mom?
- 18 Validating Reasons Why It’s Easy to Hate Being a Mom
- 1. Motherhood Isn’t What You Expected
- 2. The Constant Need for Something
- 3. You Have No Control Over Your Time
- 4. You’re Body is no Longer Your Own
- 5. The Loss of Financial Control and with it, The Last Bit of Your Independence.
- 6. The Physical Exhaustion and Lack of Sleep
- 7. The Social Isolation & Loneliness
- 8. The Gender Roles & Expectation to Become the Martyred Woman
- 9. The Mom Guilt
- 10. Having No Support or Help
- 11. Kids Can Put a Strain on Your Marriage/Partnership
- 12. Financial Struggles
- 13. Feeling Like Your Kids Are Particularly Difficult
- 14. The Loss of Your Own Identity
- 15. Maybe You Never Wanted Kids in The First Place
- 16. The Invisible Mental Load of Motherhood
- 17. Struggling with Postpartum Depression or Anxiety
- 18. Feeling Like You Have to be Perfect/You’re Never Good Enough
- What Should I do If I Hate Being a Mom?
- Know You’re Not Alone
- Ask for Help
- Schedule out Regular ‘You’ Time
- Find a Community That Gets It
- Let Go of Perfection & Society’s Expectations
- Focus on Your Physical and Mental Health
- Add Yourself Back into The Equation
- Communicate Your Needs to Your Partner
- Having Your Own Money can Help
- I Love My Kid, But I Hate Being a Mom & That’s Okay
- Other Questions You Might Have:
Motherhood Wasn’t What I Expected.
I was 20 years old when I became a mom. I had only just gotten married one year earlier. Then, when my baby was barely 3 months old, my husband and I moved across the country from my home state so he could attend grad school.
I was excited to be a new stay at home mom and raise my baby. But it didn’t take long for me to realize motherhood was not what I expected. My feelings of excitement changed into resentment, guilt, regret, and jealousy.
I remember thinking to myself, “This is it? This is all I’m supposed to do? Be ‘just a mom’ for the rest of my life? That’s my only purpose in life?”.
Here, I was doing the same monotonous routine day in and day out. I felt stagnant in my own personal progression, while my husband was out there living and progressing.
Which only made me even more resentful and jealous.
In Came The Mom Guilt
As the days went on it seemed my list of cons for motherhood vastly outweighed the pros and just kept getting longer.
- The sleepless nights
- The constant need for something
- The looks you get from others
- The comments you get too.
- Losing your identity
- Losing any time for yourself
- Losing your body
- Losing all sense of independence and financial freedom
- Losing your friends.
- Disappointing your partner when you don’t meet their expectations
- And being disappointed when they don’t meet yours.
- The mental load of doing and remembering all the things.
- The eternal life pause you’re expected to do and be happy about.
- The expectation that you’re only joy now should be to serve those around you.
- All the crying, and diapers, and baths, and meals, and doctor appointments, etc.
- All the stress, worry, and anxiety for your child
- All with the pressure to be able to handle and do it all perfectly.
Being a mom was so more physically, emotionally, and mentally exhausting than I ever imagined. And to top it all off, you feel insanely guilty for even thinking anything negative about motherhood.
A thought comes in and the mom guilt swallows you up so deep, that it feels like you’ll never resurface. Not happy at least.
It makes you feel like a horrible mom because it seems like you’re not able to handle motherhood as perfectly or easily as the other moms out there. Leaving you wondering, Am I the only one struggling?
You’re not mama.
Is it Normal to Hate being a mom?
If you’re wondering if it’s normal to hate being a mom or parent, you should know that it’s actually common. Motherhood is extremely hard, and most importantly know you’re not a bad mom for struggling. We all do at one point or another.
When we asked a group of moms on Instagram about it, over 86% said that they were struggling in some way with motherhood.
Luckily, some relief can come from understanding why you feel this way. It can better help you to cope with the negative emotions and start making changes in your life so that you can find happiness as a mom.
18 Validating Reasons Why It’s Easy to Hate Being a Mom
Being a mom is hard, and it’s okay to not always love it. To better understand why we all feel this way at one point or another. Here are 18 validating reasons why it’s easy to hate being a mom.
1. Motherhood Isn’t What You Expected
A lot of times moms go into motherhood with an idealized version of what it’s going to be like. You see all these perfect posts on social media, read books and articles, and talk to other moms about the wonderful world of motherhood.
But what you don’t see are all the negative aspects that come with it. The constant messes, the screaming and crying, the lack of sleep, and the never-ending list of things to do.
It can be really tough when your expectations don’t match up with reality. And that can leave you feeling disappointed, frustrated, and resentful.
2. The Constant Need for Something
When you’re a mom, you’re always needed for something. Whether it’s feeding, changing, bathing, or just comforting your baby, there’s always something that needs to be done.
It can be really tough to always be needed and never have a break. You can’t even sit down to eat or use the restroom without being interrupted. It’s no wonder so many moms feel like they’re going crazy.
3. You Have No Control Over Your Time
Before children, you could pretty much do whatever you wanted whenever you wanted. But now, your time is no longer your own. You have to plan everything around your child’s needs and schedule.
Even just leaving the house to go to a grocery store is a feat.
It can be really tough to lose control over your time and feel like you’re always on the clock. You can’t just spontaneously go out or take a last-minute trip. Instead, you have to plan everything in advance and hope that your child cooperates.
4. You’re Body is no Longer Your Own
When you become a mom, you also lose control over your own body. It’s now a feeding, changing, and comforting machine. You’re breasts leak, you’re always tired, and you have to carry around extra weight.
It can be really tough to feel like your body is no longer your own. You can’t just do whatever you want with it or even take care of it the way you want to. Instead, you have to put your child’s needs first.
Not to mention when you get pregnant and after birth, your body often feels like a complete stranger. You have lower self esteem, it doesn’t feel the same, look the same, or respond the ways it used to. Which is all just an added stress.
5. The Loss of Financial Control and with it, The Last Bit of Your Independence.
For a lot of mothers, becoming a stay-at-home mom also means losing their financial independence. Whether it’s because you can’t afford daycare or you want to be home with your child, it’s a big change.
It can be really tough to have to rely on someone else for money. It feels like you can’t just go out and buy whatever you want or need. You have to budget and be mindful of every penny you spend.
And even if you have a very supportive partner who truly believes their money is your money too, it can still be tough to feel like the money IS yours so you feel more guilt for spending it.
Being completely financially dependent on someone else can feel so confining. It can feel like, even if you’re unhappy about a situation or just want to make a small change, you can’t. Because you don’t have to means to do so.
6. The Physical Exhaustion and Lack of Sleep
One of the most common struggles mothers express is the lack of sleep they get. It seems like as soon as you become a mom, you’re also cursed with never-ending exhaustion.
It can be really tough to function on such little sleep. You feel foggy and sluggish all the time. It’s hard to think straight or even get out of bed some days.
Your patience wears thin and you find yourself snapping at your partner or children more often than you’d like. All you want to do is sleep but it seems like that’s impossible.
7. The Social Isolation & Loneliness
When you become a mom, your social life often changes drastically. It’s tough to get out and meet up with friends when you have a baby to take care of.
And even if you do manage to get out, it’s tough to really relax and enjoy yourself when you’re constantly worrying about your child.
Oftentimes, when you become a mom it feels like your friends simply disappear. Or your relationships aren’t the same anymore since you became a mom.
It can be really tough to feel so isolated and like you’re the only one going through this. It feels like everyone else has their life together and you’re just struggling to keep up.
8. The Gender Roles & Expectation to Become the Martyred Woman
As a mom, you’re often expected to fit into certain roles and follow specific stereotypes that, honestly, just suck. These say your only value is in cooking, cleaning, and keeping your children and partner happy.
Then you’re expected to become the martyred woman. Be the selfless, perfect, caretaker who is always put their family first. You’re not supposed have any needs or wants of your own. You’re supposed to give up your old life and be happy and grateful for everything you have, even if you’re actually struggling.
It can be really tough to feel like you have to put on this act all the time. You just want to be yourself but it feels like that’s not good enough.
You’re not supposed to have hobbies, interests, or aspirations outside of your home. Especially if it inconveniences your children or partner in any way.
No one says it, but as a mom you’re expected to take care of everyone else and then fall back into the shadows. Simply grateful that someone was there to serve and that is a really painful way to live.
Knowing this, it’s easy to understand why many moms say they miss their old lives before motherhood.
9. The Mom Guilt
It seems like as soon as you become a mom, you’re also constantly burdened with guilt. You feel guilty for working, for not working, for spending time with your partner, for not spending time with them.
You feel guilty for wanting to sleep, for wanting a break, for taking a break, and even for just thinking about taking a break.
Guilty for wanting freedom or feeling like you don’t have any. For wanting to be more than ‘just a mom’, and feeling like a bad mom because of it.
It’s tough to do anything without feeling guilty. And it’s even tougher to try and enjoy your life when you feel like you’re constantly screwing up.
The constant mom guilt, to me, is one of the hardest parts of being a mom.
10. Having No Support or Help
Another reason some moms struggle to enjoy motherhood is feeling like they don’t have any support or help.
It’s tough to do everything on your own and it’s easy to feel like you’re constantly failing when you don’t have a break or anyone to help out.
It can be hard to reach out for help, especially if you’re used to doing everything yourself. Whether you don’t have family that can help, or if you’re partner doesn’t help, feeling alone in motherhood makes it easy to not like being a mom.
11. Kids Can Put a Strain on Your Marriage/Partnership
When you become a mom, your relationship with your partner changes. And not always for the better. Having children can put a lot of strain on your marriage or partnership.
You’re both exhausted, you’re both constantly busy, and it’s easy to start taking each other for granted. It’s easy to start resenting each other because you both feel like you’re doing all the work.
It can also be very disappointing if you feel like your partner isnt’ showing up the way you thought they would, or that they aren’t the parent you thought they would be.
And vice versa. It can put a strain on the relationship when you feel like your partner also has expectations for you that you aren’t fitting into either.
12. Financial Struggles
Kids can also put you in financial hardships. When you’re struggling already, adding more people to the mix only makes things harder. There are so many expenses that come with being a parent and it’s easy to feel like you’re constantly behind.
You might not be able to afford the things you want for your kids, or the things they need. You might have to put your own dreams on hold in order to provide for your family.
And with the expenses of childcare, someone might have to give up a paycheck to stay home which can make things hard. It can be tough to feel like you’re constantly struggling and it’s easy to resent motherhood because of it.
13. Feeling Like Your Kids Are Particularly Difficult
If you feel like your kids are more difficult than others, it can not just be physically and mentally exhausting but It can make you feel like a bad mom too.
Kids test boundaries and teens rebel, but some kids have legitimate disabilities or behavioral disorders that can make motherhood especially difficult.
It can be hard to find resources, to get help, and to feel like you’re doing anything right when you have a difficult kid or a child with disabilities. You might worry about them constantly and it’s easy to not enjoy motherhood when you’re always stressed out.
14. The Loss of Your Own Identity
Before kids, you probably had your own hobbies, interests, and goals. But after having kids, it’s easy to lose sight of all of that. Your focus shifts and it’s natural to want to put all your energy into your children, or you may feel like that is expected that you give it all up.
That can leave you feeling lost. You might not know who you are anymore outside of being a mom and that can be really tough. It’s easy to lose yourself in motherhood and to start resenting it because you feel like you’re losing your own identity.
15. Maybe You Never Wanted Kids in The First Place
If you never wanted kids in the first place, enjoying motherhood can be hard. It’s not that you don’t love your kids, it’s just that you never had the desire to be a parent. So now that you’ve found yourself in that role, it can be really tough.
You might feel like you’re stuck, or that you made a mistake. You might constantly be questioning if this is what you want and feeling like it’s not. It’s easy to resent motherhood when it’s not what you wanted for yourself in the first place.
16. The Invisible Mental Load of Motherhood
There is an invisible mental load that comes along with motherhood. It’s all the things that you have to keep track of, remember, and manage on a daily basis.
When you’re the one having to constantly keep track of everyone and everything, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. You might feel like you’re the only one who is really aware of what’s going on.
You’re the one that has to remember to take the laundry out of the washer, to sign the permission slips, and to make the doctor’s appointments. It’s a lot of pressure and it’s easy to resent motherhood when you feel like you’re shouldering all the responsibility and your partner isn’t even aware of it.
17. Struggling with Postpartum Depression or Anxiety
Postpartum depression and anxiety are both very real and can make motherhood really tough. If you’re struggling to take care of yourself, it’s hard to also take care of a baby or child.
You might feel like you’re failing, or that you’re not cut out for this. It’s easy to resent motherhood when you’re struggling just to get through the day. One study found that 1 in 7 women experience postpartum depression, so you’re definitely not alone.
If you’re struggling, know it’s normal and be sure to talk to your doctor.
18. Feeling Like You Have to be Perfect/You’re Never Good Enough
All of these struggles can lead to one final, overarching feeling: that you’re never good enough. You might feel like you have to be perfect and that’s just not possible.
You might constantly be comparing yourself to other moms, feeling like they’re doing it better than you are. It’s easy to resent motherhood when you feel like you can’t measure up.
As a mom you feel like you have to do it all perfectly, and you feel like a bad mom when you don’t.
What Should I do If I Hate Being a Mom?
If you’ve found yourself thinking, “I hate being a mom, now what do I do?” here are a few steps to take to move forward.
Know You’re Not Alone
First, know you’re not alone. It’s common have these kinds of thoughts and feelings, many mothers do. It’s important to understand that there is no right or wrong way to feel about motherhood.
You might have days where you love it and days where you hate it. That’s normal.
Ask for Help
If you find yourself feeling like you hate being a mom, it’s important to reach out for help. Parenting is not something that you should go through alone.
There are so many resources available, whether it’s online or in your community. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your partner, family, friends, or even your doctor.
Asking for help might mean talking to someone about how you feel, but it also means asking for more help with everything. That is something most moms struggle to do. Being a parent is not your lone responsibility to struggle through, so ask for help!
- Ask your partner to take the kids so you can go out with your friends or go to the gym.
- Ask your mom to come watch the kids so you and your spouse can reconnect on a date or weekend away.
- Ask a friend to swap babysitting so you can each get a little free time each week.
- Ask your partner to do the nighttime feedings so you’re less tired during the day.
- Ask a family member if they’d be willing to babysit regularly so you can take up a part-time job or hobby.
- Ask your partner to help you come up with other child care options so you can go back to work or school.
Whatever it is, ask for help, and accept help when it’s offered. You’re not in this alone.
Schedule out Regular ‘You’ Time
One of the hardest parts of motherhood is feeling like you don’t have any time for you anymore. You might feel like you’re just a mom, and that’s all you are. But that’s not true! You are still you, even if your life looks different now.
Which is why it’s important to make time for yourself, even if it’s just a little bit each day. Commit to schedule out at least 1 hour a day of regular ‘you’ time.
This is time that is just for you, and no one else. It might be an hour to read each week, or going for a walk by yourself, or the gym every day. It might be taking a yoga class, time to meet up with friends for coffee, or time to work on a side business.
Whatever it is, make sure you’re making time for you.
Plan it out with your partner and schedule specific times and days. It can be something to look forward to each day or each week.
Whether that’s before the kids are up, after they’re asleep, or any hour that your partner can take the kids (even if that means after work!). Commit to at least getting your 1 hour.
I promise that 1 hour can be the one thing that helps you feel like yourself again.
Find a Community That Gets It
It can be really helpful to find a community that understands and feels the same feelings you do. A lot of times we can feel alone in our thoughts and experiences as a parent.
But when you have a community of people who feel the same way, it can make a world of difference and help you continue to move forward.
It can be an online community, like a Facebook group, or an in-person support group. Or even just a weekly coffee date with another mom friend.
Another great place to find a community of moms who understand the struggles of motherhood are relateable mom accounts on Instagram or Tiktok (@DiaryofanHonestMom is a great account to follow!).
Let Go of Perfection & Society’s Expectations
One of the biggest things that I’ve had to learn as a mom is to let go of perfection. I used to try and be the perfect mom, do everything perfectly, and have it all together.
But I quickly realized that not only is that impossible, but it’s also not necessary. I don’t have to be perfect, and I don’t have to do everything perfectly.
I also had to learn to let go of society’s expectations. Just because I’m a mom, doesn’t mean I have to do things the way society tells me I should. I can parent in the way that I feel is best for my family, not what someone else tells me is best.
So if you’re feeling like you’re not good enough, or like you’re not doing things the ‘right’ way, I want you to know that it’s okay. There’s no one right way to be a mom.
You are good enough, and you are doing things the right way for your family.
Focus on Your Physical and Mental Health
One of the best things you can do for yourself (and your family) is to focus on your physical and mental health. I know it’s hard when you’re constantly taking care of everyone else, but it’s so important to make sure you’re taking care of yourself too.
When you do at least one thing every day to promote your physical and mental health, it can help you to feel like you have more control over your life overall.
When you prioritize even just one thing for your physical health each day, like going for a walk every day. It helps you to feel like you’re in control of your body and physical health again. Feeling like you have control of your life, will improve your mental health and help you to feel happier altogether.
You don’t have to go full force and start hitting the gym every day, but doing something small each day for your physical and mental health will improve your total well-being overall.
Add Yourself Back into The Equation
One of the best things you can do for yourself, is to make sure you’re adding yourself back into the equation.
I know it’s easy to get caught up in taking care of everyone else and forget about ourselves. But it’s so important to remember that we’re important too.
I heard a mom say once that,
“If you continuously teach your family that they always come first, and you and your needs always come last, that’s exactly how they’re going to treat you. And one day, it will back fire.”
It’s important to make sure we’re making time for ourselves and that we also teach our family that we matter just as much as they do.
There are going to be times when it’s necessary to put your family’s needs over yours. But when it isn’t, it’s important to find ways to choose you.
It will not only benefit you, but your children and partner too.
Communicate Your Needs to Your Partner
Becoming parents can put a strain on any relationship. But our partners aren’t mind readers.
Having a good relationship with a partner can be the one thing that helps you get through these trying times. And the first step to reconnecting and having a healthy, supportive relationship is being clear about what your needs are.
“Hey, I’ve been feeling overwhelmed and stressed lately and I want to feel better. So could you do bedtime at night day so I can go to the gym?”
We sometimes feel annoyed that we have to explicitly spell things out just to be heard, but being clear about what we need is the only proper way to communicate in a relationship.
If you have expectations, let them know what they are. They may not know what you expect if you’ve never told them.
It can be especially frustrating when you feel like your partner should just notice and do things more. So even expressing that you’d love for them to notice x,y, and z more can be helpful in relieving some of the mental load of motherhood too.
“Hey, I’m really struggling, and I appreciate that you help out when I ask. But it would be really helpful for me if you could make an effort to notice when there are dishes in the sink each night and just do them. Instead of waiting for me ask.”
It may take some time to figure out how you and your partner communicate best, just remember to continue to always communicate your needs and keep trying.
Having Your Own Money can Help
Lastly, this is something that I have found to be a life-changer for me and can be a huge benefit for other stay-at-home moms too.
If you’re a stay at home mom, don’t underestimate the power of making even just a little bit of money for yourself!
Even if you and your partner truly believe that the money that they bring in is both of yours, and you treat it that way. The feelings of freedom, pride, and independence that comes when you bring in even just a little money is undeniable.
While taking up a job or side hustle isn’t possible for everyone, doing things like flipping thrift items or making and selling things on an Etsy. Renting out your old baby items, or doing prom makeup for even just a $100 a month makes a world of difference in feeling more independence and control in your life.
You Might like: 21 Best Hobbies for Women that Make Money in 2022
When I was feeling the height of despair over becoming a mother, starting this blog is really what pulled me out of it. It allowed me to stay home with my children and make money.
I helped me feel like I was progressing in life as a mom instead of being held back by motherhood. It really is what changed everything for me.
I Love My Kid, But I Hate Being a Mom & That’s Okay
Becoming a mom was the only way I learned what true unconditional love was. I loved every single fiber of that baby. Even before he was here.
I love my kids (I have 4 now). But I was surprised by how much I hated the expectations, pressure, guilt, loss of self, and endless monotony of being a mom in this society.
Luckily I’ve done a lot of work and deconstructing to feel happy in my life now, and truly feel like I’m thriving.
We are all just trying to do our best and be good enough. So if you’ve found yourself thinking “I hate being a mom”. I hope this post can reach someone out there feeling alone and remind you that you’re not.
You’re not a bad mom if you don’t love every second of motherhood. You’re not a bad mom if you need a break. You’re not a bad mom if you need help. You’re not a bad mom if you feel like you’re failing. You’re just a mom, doing the best you can. And that’s good enough.
Other Questions You Might Have:
Is it normal to regret being a mom?
Yes, it’s normal to regret being a mom. It’s impossible to know what motherhood is like until you’re in it. Motherhood is hard. It’s physically, emotionally, and mentally exhausting so it’s easy to feel like it all was a mistake.
But it’s important to remember that you are not the only one who feels this way. And the more we talk about it openly the more we can help ourselves and other moms who might feel the same way.
What do you do if you don’t want to be a mom anymore?
First, know you’re not alone. You are not the only one who feels this way. I know it’s hard to see that when you’re in the thick of it, but there are other moms out there who feel just like you do.
Then, it’s important to talk to someone. Your partner, friends, family, or your doctor. Finding a support group can also help. Talking to someone that supports you can help you to know how to move forward when you’re feeling like you don’t want to be a mom anymore.
Postpartum depression could be a factor too, so talking to your doctor is always a good idea too.
What is Parental Burnout?
Parental burnout is a form of mental and physical exhaustion that parents can experience. It’s caused by chronic stress from the demands of parenting. And it can leave you feeling overwhelmed, hopeless, and disconnected from your children.
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms it’s important to talk to your doctor. They can help you to figure out if what you’re experiencing is normal or if it’s something more.
What to do when you can’t stand your kid?
The first step is to try and understand why you feel this way. Is it something that your son or daughter is doing? Or is it something that you’re feeling?
If it’s something that your son or daughter is doing, then you need to figure out a way to deal with that behavior. Whether that’s setting boundaries, or getting help from a professional.
If it’s something that you’re feeling, then you need to talk to someone about it. I would suggest talking to your partner, a friend, or your doctor. They can help you to figure out what might be going on and how to deal with it.
Being a parent is hard, and we all struggling in one way or another.
Is it normal to not like being a parent?
Yes, it’s normal to not like being a parent. It’s hard, and it’s not what we expected it to be. We’re exhausted, and we feel like we’re failing. But the more we talk about it, the more we realize that we’re not alone. And that can make all the difference.
What do you do if you hate being a parent?
If you hate being a parent, the first step is to try to understand why. Being a parent is arguably one of the hardest jobs in the world. It’s exhausting, both physically and emotionally. And it can be easy to feel like you’re not cut out for it.
Maybe you hate being a parent because you feel like you’re not doing it right. Or maybe you’re just feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. Understanding where this feeling is coming from can help you come up with a plan for what to do about it. The tips listed above can help.
Do people regret having kids?
Some people do regret having kids. It’s a hard decision to make, and it’s not something that you can fully understand until you’re in it. For some people, the hardships of parenting outweigh the joys. And that can lead to regret.
If you’re feeling like you might regret having kids, it’s important to talk to someone about it. Talk to your partner, a friend, or your doctor, they can help you to figure out what might be going on and how to deal with it.
Why do I regret having a baby?
Your life changes when you become a mom. And it’s common to feel like the hardships of it all outweigh the joys, especially as a new mom. Losing your sense of self, the physical toll it takes on your body, the never-ending exhaustion, feeling like you’re failing all the time. It’s hard. And it’s normal to regret having a baby because of it.
The important part to note is that there is hope for the future. Things will get better. It might not be easy, but it’s possible. If you’re feeling like you regret having a baby, talk to someone about it and use the tips above to know how to move forward.
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