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  #1  
October 10th, 2011, 06:03 AM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 3,492
ladies, I am in a funk. I am tired of the condition of my house and I feel so overwhelmed that I can't even start to do things little by little.

My house has never been neat, clean, organized or anything like that but now it is just out of control. Not like the hoarding shows out of control but dirty and one of those house where everything has a missing piece, you can't find what you are looking for and if you open a closet you are likely to have something fall on top of you.

Not only do I feel in a funk that I can't bring myself to start small in order to tackle this, but I also resort back to the "how can I do anything with all these kids clinging to me, needing something every 2 minutes and lord have mercy...OH the nonstop fighting & crying?"

i don't normally let the baby upstairs just because it seems unsafe. Toilets that she loves to play in and none of our chest of drawers are anchored to the wall and lots of things she can put in her mouth not to mention the stairs she falls down. So working on putting clothes away is so hard. The little one seems to just knock clothes over and mess them up anyway.

The garage is like walking into a land mine. Anything in there can fall over and hurt & we are right by a street that anyone of my kids can wander off and get hit by a car.

I need to get the living room carpet cleaned very badly but we are here everyday so how do I do it?

My Dh seems to work all the time. Days, evenings weekends. When he isn't out he seems to always have computer work to do. When he is home I feel guilty asking him to take all 4 kids somewhere so I can have the house to myself to clean and organize becuz having all 4 kids out by yourself is just so difficult.

When I am home with the kids it seems like i am either trying to entertain the 3 girls and keep them away from Nathan & his therapist so they can work or I am getting ready to run out the door for preschool, dance, gymnastics, Occupational therapy, grocery store, walmart etc.

Everyone still naps but honestly I lay down and nap at the same time. By afternoon my nerves are shot and I can't imagine tackling something that seems so big and impossible. I just want to close my eyes and relax before the kids get up and chaos starts again.

I tell my Dh that there are tons of Large Family moms who do it all. You ladies cook, clean, homeschool, shop, even work outside the home. What is my problem? Why do I suck at this so badly?

Of course my Dh uses the excuse that he is gone a lot and that we don't have any relatives nearby but I know many of you are in the same boat so that excuse means nothing to me.

What is my prob? Really why do I feel like I am seconds away from a psych ward and an episode of hoarders?
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Last edited by cnote; October 10th, 2011 at 09:23 AM.
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  #2  
October 10th, 2011, 07:11 AM
Mom to 8 amazing kids
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melba, Idaho
Posts: 2,672
I don't think you are alone, I can even say I have those same feelings. Honestly my kids room is horrible, mind you a couple of months back I got up stripped and threw a ton of crap away but if you were to look at it now you wouldn't know it. A land mine has exploded in there, if you go in I can not guarantee you will come out

My house, how to explain it....to small for all of the people that live here sometimes. Not so much square footage wise but storage wise. It's old and people in the olden days just didn't have as much stuff as people of today do. It is a constant battle of organization. In the last few months or so I have really stepped it up and have tried to stay on top of it. I take one small thing at a time, and move on to the next.....but I do it with the expectation that only a 1/4 of what I wanted to do will get done. If that is all that get's done then I don't feel like I failed and if I get more done I feel as if I accomplished more then I set out to do.

If you can afford it, since there is no family close, I would suggest putting out feeler's for a teen in the area who might be willing to come help entertain the little ones while you tackle one room/area at a time. Clean your carpets around the kids....my little ones always like to play on the wet carpet, whatever makes them happy and what does it hurt?

Honestly though, if the house is clean I am more apt to keep at it. I have just learned that until they are gone and out it is never going to be the way I want it. I settle for the fact that they won't get any disease and call it good. Some day you can eat off our floor and others...well I wouldn't, probably wouldn't kill you but why risk it LOL.
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  #3  
October 10th, 2011, 08:54 AM
Momtothe6thpower's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Smalltown, USA
Posts: 8,418
I'm alot like you. If things start falling behind, like laundry, I have a hard time finding the motivation to catch up again. I feel like I failed or something.

A couple of things that help me get out of a funk...
1. EXERCISE! A fairly new behavior for me but WHOA, huge difference in how I feel when I make the time and when I don't. I won't lie, I haven't lost a pound but I do feel like I lose a ton of stress in that 30 mins. So worth it to me.

2. Donating stuff. When I'm feeling down or overwhelmed I'll just start throwing things in a box and take it to Goodwill. It makes me feel good and gets me started with organizing things.

I also think you should look for a babysitter like m2m10 suggested. Find a 14 yr old that can come over on weekends or after school and just sit with the kids while you complete a project or two. I'm so blessed that I have my oldest for this.

Your dh sounds awesome, btw. Listen to him. My dh is not so understanding when I get behind.
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  #4  
October 10th, 2011, 09:29 AM
Just_Marie's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 28,174
((hugs)) Its hard having lots of little kids since none of them can really help effectively. ITA with pps, find a teen to entertain the kids for a few hours a couple times a week, and try to tackle one little project at a time. I've also got a group of littles, no fam and dh working most waking hours---we decided a few years ago to get a housekeeper to come in every 2 weeks. I also have childcare coming in a few days a week-sometimes its a teenager, sometimes its nanny hours(but a teen works just as well). On those days I do the preschool run and get some me time until I pick him up--I'm also very good at leaving a list for the sitters-they're responsible for folding/putting away kids clothes, run the vacuum, and deal with the kitchen. I come home feeling like I had a little break (even though I've only gotten groceries or went to an appt), my kids clothes are clean and put away, my floors and kitchen are clean-and the kids are safe and happy. That gives me a little more wind in my sails to get the other grosser jobs done, usually once the kids are in bed-but mine are in bed by 6 so I have time for that. And clean carpets one room at a time, maybe one a week if you can-I cleaned the main living room and dining room last week while the twins were napping, and N and E were playing in the wet carpet but once it dried you couldn't tell.
((hugs)) one day they'll be bigger and actually helpful, and this will be just a vague memory
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  #5  
October 10th, 2011, 06:07 PM
dalynnrmc's Avatar pronounced (day-lynn)
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: near Waco, TX
Posts: 3,305
I think we all feel this way from time to time! (And for some, time to time is every few years... while for others it's a couple of times EVERY year. LOL I'm in the latter group!)

We also went through and donated *TONS AND TONS* of stuff a few months ago. And we also are talking about how it is time to do it again. Really frustrated that my 7 and 8yo's still cannot seem to not contribute to the mess - which in itself would be of HUGE help to me.

I have come almost full circle from my own housekeeping methods 10 years ago. I was not a hoarder. I just didn't clean. Ever. I found that my hubby couldn't stand things that way, and little by little have improved. Know what? He still gets frustrated with the state of the house from time to time. One difference - I've come to recognize when I'm doing what I can and just shrug off his frustrations, and when he's brought to my attention that I've been neglecting the house in at least an area or two and so to take his frustration as my wake-up to the undoing of my routine.


Just this month I have seen with my own eyes how my routine and the cleanliness of my home have suffered because I stopped making it a priority to read my Bible and seek the Lord first thing in the morning. For a good long while now, my twins have stayed asleep when I got up and I could spend this time. Recently, they are not going to bed as early and thus I end up sleeping later and so when I get up, they do too - which takes away that free time to read and be with the Lord. Guess what has to come first in order for it to work? Not sleep!



I struggle with this a lot. I do. And part of my depression regarding it is because I know that it is within my power to do better. But every day, I have good intentions, and am going to do it "in a minute, just after I..." do whatever it is I'm doing. And every day it ends up being hours later and I still didn't do it. What's the matter with me???? The Word says that when we do what we don't want to do and not what we want and know we should, that it is not us but sin in us. It's about taking our flesh and every thought captive and making it come into the obedience of Christ. And when we draw near to Him, He draws near to us - and I have experienced this within this VERY subject matter. If I just DO in the mornings, or if I just GET UP from this stupid computer chair, and do ONE THING... He helps me and gives me strength to do the things I need to do. And when I make time to do the things I want to do, He makes sure that I have time to do the things I need to do.


I stopped making cleaning schedules. I can't stick to those.

I finally recognized where my limits are with some things. I AM a mom of 5 kids, including 2 infants. I had to find the line between "I'm a busy mom and I don't have time for that!" and, "but I do have time for this and it HAS to be done."


Some things that work for us, noting that THE MOST IMPORTANT thing is always that I'm putting my God-time in its proper place in my life. That doesn't mean necessarily that it has to happen first thing in the day if that's not where it fits in your day, it just means making it a priority and deciding when it will happen and then MAKING it happen.

DISHES - I make my 8yo unload the dishwasher when he first gets up in the morning. The dishwasher cannot be open when the babies are up, and since my 8yo is almost always the first person up in the mornings (and he hates cleaning of any sort so this is a good way for him to contribute), this falls to him. Then I load it back up when the twins nap. Sometimes they don't nap at the same time. If I see this happen, I TRY to find a time when my baby boy is sleeping (he's the one twin who can walk and makes a bee-line for the dishwasher if it's open), that my 12yo can make it a point to keep baby girl out of the kitchen and get it done then.

LAUNDRY - I used to do a load or two every day. I can no longer do that. I really can't. It doesn't work. My hubby works nights so during the day he's asleep in the bedroom, where the dirty laundry hamper is. (And I can't move it. There really is nowhere else to put it. Really really.) My solution is that the only laundry I do during the week is diapers. Thursday and Friday I have kids do laundry. My 12yo can do his own laundry, plus whatever is in the back bathroom hamper. My 8yo can load the washer, and then my 12yo can add soap and start it for him. Then my 8yo switches the loads, and when it's done my 7 and 8yos put away their own clothes. This is new for us and sometimes it causes fights and tears, but it WILL happen. It's going more smoothly every week. If that much laundry gets done during the week, I can handle doing up all the rest (about 5 loads) on Saturday. I can't always get it all put away, but hubby has noticed what I'm doing and helps with that part. And if it doesn't get put away, we live out of the laundry basket for the week. Hey, at least it's clean.


Kitchen - clearing the table after meals is my 12yo's job. That includes getting the food put away. I've *always* had issues getting this done. Partly, I just forget. I dunno, it's the way I'm wired. I can't do this one. Food ruins, and I hate it. And if it hasn't been done by the time I go to fix the next meal, it's a hindrence in getting that done as well. My 12yo helps with little things here and there, helping tons with the babies, and besides doing his own laundry and cleaning his own room, this is the ONE chore I have assigned to him. I really want to be careful about leaning on him to do too much. My mother depended on me too much (without cause a lot of it), and I am determined to avoid doing the same to him. But, he can remember to do this! And it makes a huge difference for me, so I have him do it.

The floors are the job of my 7 and 8yos. They, after all, make most of the mess. We are still working on this, but we clean up every night. One of them is assigned the kitchen floor (usually my 8yo) and one of them the school area. Then they both work together in the living room. I have to tell them every single thing to pick up. (While that sounds like I could/should be doing it myself, realize it usually happens while I"m nursing babies. LOL) I think that's just part of the game at this age. THey don't want to do it, and something about maturity and being boys prevents them from actually realizing things are out of place. So I tell them.



So What DO I do? Dishes when the babies nap. Sweep after dinner, whenever I have a break in activity and can do so. Laundry on Saturdays. Vacuum on Saturdays (a new addition for me, but a MUST with these messy toddlers!), usually while I have that first load still going. Saturday has become "clean the house" day. Kids know that there's no tv until their rooms are clean. Hubby does up any dishes I didn't get to - this usually includes the large pots and things that need to be washed by hand. I hate that, and he knows it, and I have a hard time spending that much time in front of the sink. I also direct the kids in getting things done. It's the kids who clutter the entertainment center, so on Saturdays it is them who clears it off.


I guess one thing for me is realizing that I don't have any large squares of time to do nothing but clean. But you can do anything for 15 minutes. So here and there through the day I try to find 10 or 15 minutes to spend doing... SOMETHING. Anything.


It dawned on me a few months ago that as the "manager of my home" it is not really my job to DO IT ALL MYSELF. I really got a hold of needing to get things done a few years ago, but I really thought it meant doing it all myself. It doesn't. I worked at McDonald's for 5 months about 10 years ago. Do you know what the managers do? Nothing. THey tell everyone else what to do so that it all gets done. They SUPERVISE ONLY. It ticked me off at the time, but I noted in my heart how effective it was. It's a great system. When I remembered that in the context of managing my own home recently, it hit my heart like a rock. I don't have to do it all! I'm the manager!!

And so I've been watching carefully to realize what each kiddo's capacity really is, and helping them work towards it so that they are the most effective they can be, for the good of our whole family.



Side note: These past two weeks, I have not put the Lord where He should stay in my life. Things have not gotten done. Part of the "why" of that includes my babies being sick, so everything kind of went by the wayside. I should not have let my God time get pushed aside with the rest. They are over what they had and I am starting over this week! If you'd like, I can partner with you and we can work on our homes a little at a time.

Check out Cyndi Kinney, the notebook queen. While I found FlyLady condescending (even if what she says is accurate, it is NOT said in love and I don't like going there!!), Cyndi is very encouraging and hits the nail on the head every time. Browse her site, and PM me any time. Sorry so long - this is near and dear to my heart, and I am only a step or two ahead of you on the journey. THought I should speak up - you are not alone!! :dothugs:
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  #6  
October 10th, 2011, 08:00 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 8,386
I think the pp have it covered, but hugs to you, hope you manage to get back into things the way you want it to be.
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  #7  
October 11th, 2011, 08:24 AM
Kristina's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Vermont
Posts: 6,696
I think we have all been there it is esp hard when you have so many littles and no bigs to help, My hardest time was when I just had four because they were all so little that I really had to do it all. I think just taking little 15 minute cleaning spurts helps a lot when I'm on the toliet Im also picking up any garbage I can reach on the floor and piling up the laundry I can reach too. When I brush my teeth I also pick up any tooth brushes that weren't picked up and wiping down the sink and the toliet. So my bathrooms while not squeaky clean everyday are picked up enough for surprise guests. When I change a dirty butt I also do a quick wipe down with a wipe of the living room coffee table and stand.(wipes work great for that) The little ones also like to help with this give them a wipe and watch them go they also love love cleaning windows.
I also have the dishwasher problem Ryder is horrible when that dishwasher opens its like a race to close it if he notices it open; so that only gets done by one of the big kids, I will do them by hand during the day after meals. Dinner dishes are done by the big kids. As soon as the big kids leave for the day I run downstairs and start a load of laundry and whenever I have a second I run back down and switch it through out the day. I try to put it away during the babies nap time. I have a family closet right next to the laudry room with clothes for #1-#6 down there. Everything else goes upstairs I bring it up after each load and put it away a little at a time. I vacuum at least 2x's a day but it's not deepvacuuming just a quick runover anything the kiddos have managed to get all over, cracker crumbs, cereal, toast crumbles etc. I try to sweep everyday but it probably only gets done every other day. I spot mop when I have to and really mop once a week. When I start to get overwhelmed I declutter a lot. Just grab a garbage bag and let go .
Keep your head up it does get easier as they get older.
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  #8  
October 11th, 2011, 09:46 AM
Repti.Mom's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 15,641
I am not much help, because I am SUPER anti-clutter. If we aren't using it in 20 minutes I get rid of it

I think a teen helper would be a good idea. Even if they would take the little ones to a park for a day while you clean one room, then you can throw the kids in the clean room, and move room to room. Sure they're going to mess up some stuff, but it will at least be 90% clean when you have to go back and clean it again if that makes sense.
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