Why can't I be the typical mom?

I am a mom, I have three kids. My 2 oldest kids live with my ex husband on the weekdays and they stay with me on the weekends. I have my youngest at home with me all the time, she is 4 and doesn't go to school yet. I see how families are and they seem happy and they are always doing fun stuff together. And then I look at my family and we don't do anything together. We are always broke, so the things we do are free things like the park and community events that don't charge. Whenever we go to these things either one person is grumpy and doesn't wanna be there or we all just wanna leave. I don't know how to make things fun for my kids, I don't know how to make them enjoy the times we have to stay home. I try to be affectionate and huggy, but I find myself distant. Why don't I have all the natural mothering skills that other mothers have. I am not a typical mom, I need some advice on how to change and be a great mom and be here for my family not only physically and mentally. I love my kids with my heart and soul, my husband is kind of the same. He is here physically but he is also distant. I worry that my rocky relationship with him, effects my behavior and maybe that's what keeps me distant and closed off. I just want advice, and no I don't need professional help, just some friendly opinions from other mothers and fathers too. Please do not be mean, we are not here to bully each other.


Most Helpful Guy

  • Parenting is one of the most difficult things in the world, especially when the parents have problems with each other. I have 2 kids, ages 5 and 11, girls.

    Like you, we're broke. I live with family members so they can live in our house. We've never taken vacations like our neighbors do. My kids question why. Income. Incomes. Explain that to a kid. That's life. My wife does a great job of taking care of them without me around now. Does it come easy? Hell no. Is it natural? No. She just does it. We both just do it. Does it take patience? Every damn minute of every damn day. Parent's relationships affect the kids. We hope to fix ours. Not sure if we can.

    Advice? Great mom? I don't know any. I just know mom's who "are" moms. Most mom's do their best. Some make it look easy, but that's always from the outside. At night I'm sure they collapse just like every other mom, and wonder if they're doing the right thing.

    I think the best advice I can offer is something my wife has impressed upon me. I suffer chronic daily migraines; have for 30 years. They've ruined my life, and my marriage. No matter how bad you feel, no matter how down you feel, no matter how crappy things are going in your life, do not let it show to your kids. So it's our job to love them and support them and set good examples. Changing my behavior so there's is good is the hardest thing I've ever had to do, especially when I feel like shit, as if on my death bed. But it's no longer about me. It's ALL about them now. It's ALL about them. That doesn't mean we spoil them to make them happy. That means we set good examples and instill good values as to what's right and what's wrong in behaviors. Both theirs and ours.

    Plus we have to have fun with them, LOTS of fun with them, and be kids with them. We actually have to go back and think like a kid when we're playing with them and dealing with them.

    It's ALL about THEM.

    Hope this helps.


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What Guys Said 1

  • Sounds like you're hitting the nail on the head...your relationship with your husband is affecting the relationship with your children.

    Plus they're dealing with issues of divorce and being shuffled. That's only natural.

    You have to be creative in what you do with them. Ignore the griping. There are kids whose parents are spending $4000 at Disney right now and they're griping for whatever reason.


What Girls Said 1

  • These seemingly happy families... Do you see how they are inside the four walls of their homes?

    I'm not a mom, but I have friends who are moms and I've seen how relieved they can be when I come over and offer to take care of their kids so that she can get a haircut. Handling kids can be a lot. Especially if you have to do it 24/7.

    Even until now, when we have a family outing together, there usually is one person who is grumpy and would rather stay int he hotel room.

    What I'm saying is, what you're experiencing with your kids is normal. You are the typical mom. It's understandable that you're exhausted and sometimes can't be all "oooooh mommy loves you so much!" with your kids.

    But if you think your rocky relationship with your husband is bringing a bad influence on your kids, maybe you should do something about it...