Bad Mama

**warning – lengthy, brutal & unhappy honesty ahead**

One of the most important benefits of stopping drinking for me was that I’d be a better parent to my three children. They are beautiful little creatures, and I want to be the best mummy for them that I possibly can.

Up until yesterday, I had been delighted to find that my patience with them had improved dramatically, and I’d been much more able to calmly deal with the myriad of crises that make up a day in their little lives. I have even been more fun. This has feltย so good.

Some background is in order at this point (yep, here come the excuses). ย My eldest is 4 years old, and has just started school. My twins are 3 years old, and have just started nursery. They are all at the age where they are little sponges for attention, and I can give them but a fraction of what they need.

Today, I got them all up, ready for school/nursery, got myself ready for work, took the eldest to school (with twins in tow) then got the twins to nursery, then got myself straight to work, then turned around, did all that in reverse, got them home, fed them tea, assisted eldest with homework, whilst entertaining the twins, and then got them all ready for bed. Most of this they did not want to do, and put up a fight against. I am fully aware that a) this is pretty normal for kids if their age, and b)that my life is ridiculously easy compared to the challenges many people face around this world. However..

From the minute I picked the twins up today, it all went wrong; they were tired, cranky, and I had a banging headache and work had been difficult. After hours of countless mini-disasters, deliberate widdling, refusals to eat, jumping on sofas, constant questions, demands, and by bedtime, utter refusal from the twins to cooperate AT ALL, every single one of my buttons had been pushed repeatedly, and I snapped.

I lost my temper, lost control completely and utterly, and absolutely screamed at them. I was a raging tyrant; I shouted in their faces, stormed out of the bathroom and roared like a deranged lion on the landing. They were terrified, they howled, ran to their beds sobbing, whilst I managed to get a hold of myself and tried to reassure my eldest son that no, he hadn’t done anything wrong. I then put him to bed, leaving the twins breaking their little hearts crying in their beds, and finally, when my heart rate had gone down enough, I went to them in turn and comforted them, apologised, and held them. They’ve gone to sleep now, and I’ve been either crying, or on the verge of tears ever since.

What a complete fucking bitch I am.

The thing that is killing me the most is that I thought it was the vicious cycle of booze and hangover which made me a snappy, intolerant mother. Sadly, I no longer have that excuse, and I’m sat here now trying to face up to the fact I’m basically just a shit. I thought it was all so much better now I’d stopped drinking, and that I’d get to be the mummy to them that I so badly want to be.

The irony is, I spend so much of my time worrying about them. I feel completely crushed with anxiety and fear for them, for their safety. Due to certain events in my childhood, I live under a cloud of fear that they may just die on me at any minute. I used to numb all that away with booze. I can’t do that any more. I also can’t numb away the fact I’m an intolerant bitch who doesn’t deserve them.

Still, at least I’m sat here, not drinking, analysing what’s happened, and trying to work out how the fuck I can do better next time. That’s progress, ย of sorts.

Red xx

 

 

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26 thoughts on “Bad Mama”

  1. you are human. Being a mother is hard. Being a mother of young children – not to mention THREE of them is harder. Trying to do this AND change your own life is freaking HARD AS HELL. I snap occasionally, and I am blaming a lot of it on hormones. Also when I am trying to detox I do it – this is exactly why I can never make it past 15 days. I just need a bottle of sanity please…..Do not beat yourself up. Make a mental or literal note of what lit your fire, what made it grow, and how you can better put it out next time. We are all just human beings trying to figure this all out and navigate the shit storms that come at us all while trying to stay out of jail ๐Ÿ™‚ Relax. Enjoy the rest of your day or evening.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Hey, we all need encouragement. Today is brand new day full of opportunities. I love zombie type apocalyptic shows (Walking Dead anyone?) and movies. You know those zombies in Walking Dead you can sort of see them coming and they are fairly slow so while Rick and the gang are pretty bad ass they kind of have time to react. In contrast the zombies on movies such as World War Z and Maze Runner the Scorch Trials – those sap suckers move like lightning and Oh Shit, Something BIT me….(said like Forrest Gump)…NOW, if you have not seen any of this you are going to think I am totally bonkers…and well, maybe I am, but my point is this – some challenges are just expected and you can kind of see them coming and have time to react and get your ducks in a row (sort of) and be prepared for them, but some challenges just pounce of freaking nowhere and however you are feeling in that moment is going to be all tangled up in your reaction to sudden challenge. So, like my husband always says (Lonesome Dove) “its better to have your gun and not need it, than to need it and not have it.” Prepare for your day before you start your day. If you need to wake up earlier for time to meditate then do so, but take time to familiarize yourself with YOU before you give yourself to your day. Love and Hugs. God’s blessings and favor be upon you today.

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      2. I love this analogy! You’re a wise woman. I’m feeling like I can start getting my ducks in a row on this one now; feed the tired hungry kids very quickly, give them lots of attention, no housework and a very simple tea. Funny you should mention meditation, I’m thinking of trying it, just not too sure how to start.
        Oh and I LOVE Walking Dead. I live and breathe it each time there’s a new series. Red xx

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      3. Oh man.. We have to wait until the dvd is released on amazon, buy it, and then we basically clear our schedules and watch between 3 and 5 episodes per night (depending on level of cliffhanger). Can’t wait to watch it sober and remember it all!!

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  2. Congratulations, you are now a fully fledged mother. What you describe happens to all mothers, all over and the ones it hasn’t happened to are lying! Years ago I worked with an earth mother, hippy, love is the only way, I am the earth’s womb-type mother. I am not taking the mick, she was a genuine natural born hippy. She believed in co-sleeping, breast feeding til they do gcse’s, happy flappy love love love. I came to Orkney one day and she is in bits, like basket case bits. She goes on to explain a similar scenario to you but then said “and I just snapped! And …. I….SLAPPED my child”(the child was 4) to which I replied, it’s ok lots of parents slap, it was a one off and you just were having a moment. She them let out a baleful cry and said, “you don’t understand I slapped her round the face”. THIS from Mother Earth!! We all do it and I will happily share my shame storm with you someday – all of it was stone cold sober and no I am not proud but I now know it is normal and human to snap. Forgive yourself and allow yourself tome to regroup. Big hugs to you. In the animal kingdom they reprimand their young with no remorse. Let it go and move forward, stop berating yourself.

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      1. This is great – I totally know the hippy type mother you refer to, and they are usually the ones who make me feel like I’m on the back foot with this whole mothering thing. It’s good to hear a real life example to make me feel a bit more normal!! (What’s normal anyway?!) I also love the bit about the animal kingdom/no remorse – I shall remember that ;-). Big hugs back and thankyou. Red xx

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  3. Oh Red – I fully understand where you are coming from. Every single mother has been through what you’ve just described – a gazillion times. My kiddies are a few yrs older (youngest age 5 – and boy oh boy does she push my buttons). but honestly it does get slightly easier (when I look back in hindsight at ages 3 and 4) but I still have moments where I’m screaming my head off at them. But it was definitely more frequent when they were a bit younger (like you say – that constant need for attention), and when I’m thinking in rational mode – it was definitely more frequent when I was drinking. (believe you me – I still have moments of screaming even now I’m sober!). But you know – the fact that it made you feel terrible and the fact that you’re analysing it – I have been told by older and wiser (and I believe it), means that you are amazing mother. I’m sure you were a fab mother even before you became AF – but I can guarantee you’re an even better one now. (By the way in saying all this to you I’m trying to do a bit of self talk to myself because I regularly doubt my abilities as a good mother/berate myself for having lost it with them. As you say – we cannot describe how unbelievably precious they are to us and how amazingly lucky we are to have them. Anyway well done for not turning to the evil witch of vino when feeling like this. How well are we doing though!!!! Cant really believe how far through Jan we’ve made it – and so determined to push on through feb then march ……. and forever. Multiple pats on back for both of us – plus all your other lovely readers out there. Take care Red – tomorrow will be a much better day. Love SFM

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    1. Realise in my first line I say every single mother…. -I’m not a ‘single’ mother – so just thought I’d clarify. Oh my goodness I completely take my hat off to single mothers. As I said above – I have had (and continue to have ) ridiculously tough times with my kiddies ‘normal for age’ challenging behaviour – and just don’t know how I’d cope without Mr SFM’s support. So I am even more in awe of the single mothers out there who are managing to crack this sober life. You go girls!

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      1. Funny – I said that to Mr Red last night too – there are single mums out there doing this, how have I the right to find it hard eh? Seriously though, thanks for the lovely comment above – it’s great to know that others have done the same, I feel a bit less of a monster. And yes, we are all bloody awesome getting this far, aren’t we?! Massive pats on the back, and big hugs to you. Red xx

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  4. We’ve all done it Red! We’re human! I’ve yelled so hard I’ve lost my voice! But one thing I have learned (now my kids are old enough to give ‘feedback’) is the HUGE power of an apology from an adult. It’s incredible how much they value it. It teaches them that everyone is fallible, that you are treating them like proper human beings, and it teaches them good manners! I now make a real point of saying something along the lines of “I am really sorry that I did X. I was in a terrible mood because of Y. But that is no excuse. I should not have shouted and you did not deserve it.” It works like magic and they end up feeling better about themselves than before the whole shouty thingy. Big hugs x

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    1. SM thankyou so much for this – my throat was also hoarse last night!! I am a firm believer in the apologies from adults being important. They seem to respond well to it. Thankyou and big hugs back. I posted my blog last night then read yours and felt such a wimp – I hope you’re feeling better today, and that these side effects lessen, or that it’s just a blip. Oh and congrats on not being preggers ๐Ÿ˜‰ Red xx

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  5. Woah there!! Rewind and give yourself a break! We’ve all roared at the kids at times. I second sobermummy. When i row with my kids I make sure I say sorry to them and I name what I did wrong, and also tell them why I got upset. I mean, who wouldn’t lose the plot with the repetition and the ignoring of the repetition (see – get out of bed and get dressed. Please. Get out of bed and get dressed. Get out of bed. Now. GET OUT OF BED. NOW!!!)
    It’s real life baby, they learn how to deal with it through us. ie – when you lose you temper have the grace to apologise and move on.
    (PS – at the moment my children are having a fight over toilet paper. ‘Maaaam’ ‘yes?’ “x won’t give me the toilet paper’ ‘X! Give Y the toilet paper’ Seriously)

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    1. Haha – thanks that’s just made me laugh, how the flip can they row over such things?? I feel your pain. Mine would argue their way out of a winning lottery ticket if the could, they’re just so perverse sometimes!! And the not listening – oh my that’s a BIG button of mine. I’m like polly-bloody-parrot most evenings. Mr Red is threatening to record himself saying stock phrases ( like “no, the OTHER foot ) and just play them back on a constant basis ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thankyou for getting me out of my funk. Red xx

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  6. No kids but we are all human – worse with a skin full no doubt and you do have the guts to tell us all about it. They’ll soon forget, so don’t let it fester away. I have no doubt they will be running round driving you mad again in the morning – just another 15 0r so years but then, its just dogs and horses here……All better without a drink, particularly at 0615.

    Justonemore

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  7. All I have is a cat. But I did have a glimpse of what it is like to be a mother of a small child, while helping a friend (mother of a toddler), with her bookkeeping…her otherwise charming daughter turned into a MONSTER OF DEVASTATION…..screaming, shouting and tears followed (from my friend), and finally the chaos subsided and I held the calm child on my knee processing invoices while her mother dried her tears and washed poo out of her hair….I have NO FUCKING IDEA how you all do it…..kudos to YOU ALL xxxx

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    1. Thanks Jackie, that just made me laugh!! There’s always poo involved somewhere with toddlers.. and monsters of devastation? That’s either some new rock band, or a very accurate description of small children ๐Ÿ˜‰ Red xx

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