Hello! I also foung this place when I googled "I hate being a mother". I have a 5 year old daughter and I am divorced. I am not a native english speaker so I hope that you will excuse my mistakes.
What I will try to prove and I believe that it's valid for most women, is that most of the resentment I feel towards motherhood is not because of the child itself or its needs, although she is far from perfect and she can be tiring sometimes. What I find lousy and unbearable both when I was married and even more now that I am divorced is the way the society treats mothers. The role of the mother and the way of life that is imposed to the majority of women who wish to enjoy motherhood is devouring, irrational and inhuman. Back in the 19th century people were working like animals in the factories. You couldn't accuse a person for being lazy and self centered and not willing to follow Gods commandment because he felt that such work sucked. It would be a joke to present him a nice poster with "the happy dilligent worker" in order to inspire this poor lost soul. With motherhood it is the same thing. You can't say that an intelligent and sensitive woman, who feels that the role of the mother as it is formed by the modern society suffocates her very soul, has psychological problems or that she is too selfish and self centered.
Mothers usually get depressed not because they need "counceling" but because they need more support from loving people who pay attention to them, acknowledge their effords and share their everyday problems, their hopes and their dreams. Also mothers needs a person who is in love with them and finds them attractive and desirable. For married mothers this person cannot be the husband who comes back home from work exhausted, wanting a nice meal, a cozy place to rest his bones, and good sex and the last thing he needs is to spend his last bits of energy providing emotional support. Also, in a marriage with children the "in love" feeling faids away and in most cases the husband doesn't find the woman as attractive as he used to because he doesn't have to chase her anymore. She is already too dependand on him since she has his child already. Also, nobody finds attractive a tired woman, who has little time to take care of herself and she doesn't look sexy, who has to (go to work and) stay at home all day and night arranging the house, cooking etc with her pijamas instead of wearing sexy dresses and going out dancing and prefers to get a good night sleep instead of seducing. So what about friends? In the vast cities where most of us live it is almost impossible to have a circle of good old friends when you are in your 30s. Very few people stay in the place where they grew up and most of them decide to move to a new house when they are in their 30s. They have to be very lucky to end up living in a place where they can make good friendships with their neighbours. Even in that case, still they socialize as couples and not as seperate entities. After a while, the woman finds herself spending long days living like a robot, all alone, with not a living soul to share her thoughts and dreams. I've been there and I know it.
For unmarried mothers or divorced mothers (like me) things are even worse because they have to face the fact that they are considered more or less outcasts from the group of married people because married women see them, even subconciusly, as a potential threat to their marriage and married men, when they don't see them as the easy and vulnerable victim for an illegal affair, they see them as a bad example for their wives. Even if they are accepted and this happens only with dear old friends from school, they have to be extra careful about anythig they say concerning relationships, actually it is better not to talk at all, because they are considered as either evil and envious persons trying to ruin other people's marriages, or pathetic losers who got crashed from being single and parents so they ended up believing that keeping a marriage is everything in life. Most of the people in their 30s that I know are freshly married.
The relationships with the few unmarried friends that are left they are based on an unequal basis because the single/divorced mother has always to take into account the child and make her plans accordingly and ask the others (who cannot always understand) to fit their program to those needs or she has to overextent herself in order to be able to keep those friendships. Also, the unmarried/divorced mother is more often exhausted or depressed, she needs more support. When she brings the child along she is held responsible for the childs bad behaviour. At the same time she has less time and resources to offer to others. So, the unmarried/divorced mother has to feel grateful, and she has to act in a meek or even in a servile way in order to secure acceptance from her friends.
About feeling desirable or even better that someone is "in love with you" those are long forgotten concepts for unmarried/divorced women. I was reading a survey that showed that a child is the second most unwanted characteristic in a partner when the first is not having a job. You will all tell me nice stories about women who found "Prince Charming" although they had a child etc, but I will ask you how long did they have to suffer waiting all alone, crushing under responsibilities while being constantly rejected. In the case of a unmarried/divorced mother, being pretty is a curse because although you can see that you are very desirable soon after that you will experience rejection in the cruelest way. If you have a good job and money things are not getting better, because in that case men find the child as an excuse to belittle you and get their petty revenge on you for daring being more succesfull from them although you are a woman. There is also the other kind of men who think that "a second hand ferrari is better than a brand new fiat" (this is something I have really heard from people, friends and potential lovers). Those are men that you would have rejected if you didn't have a child or that you have already rejected in the past but now, they thing that they have a good chance with you because under your new circumstances, you can't afford being too selective. Even if you meet a guy who looks right you will soon find out that you don't have enough time and energy to give to a potential relationship, you find it difficult to lay aside cynicism and open up your heart, and if you manage to do this then you find it difficult not to appear needy after all those years of isolation and finally you are scared to death thinking that you will might end up devastated and unable to cope with your responsibilities. Also, you feel guilty that you have to exclude your child from a part of your life, you have to decide when is the right time for the child to meet the guy, you always afraid that it might not work and then the child will be traumatized and you feel guilty both towards the child and the guy when you see your child suffering from jealousy and treating the guy in a lousy way. I've been through all those situations and the only thing that worked for me is shallow relationships, which of course are not fulfilling but at least they don't endanger my well being and my family peace.
At the same time the ex, free from all responsibility since it is normal and totaly acceptable for men NOT to spend much time with their offsprings and leave them to their grandparents and NOT to try too hard to earn money when the mother has a good job, he can fully enjoy life WHILE enjoying having a daughter at the same time AND he can advise me about how good it would be for me and the child if I could find a nice and loving partner.
The weird thing that happens when you give birth to a child is that right from the beggining you are considered by default of being a bad and ingnorant mother and you have to struggle hard to prove the opossite to everybody (friends, familly, collegues, people on the street etc). If you are an unmarried/divorced mother, this phenomenon is even more intense.I have a 5 year old daughter who is healthy, intelligent and happy and I haven't heard once in my life a good word for all the work that I do, especially from my mother or any other older woman. The only things that I hear is people critisizing everything that I do sometimes openly, other times in the form of "advise". You have to answer and explain everything like a criminal like why you chose that day care and not the other, why you answered the mobile phone while she was talking to you, why did you buy her those clothes and not the others, your way of teaching her things (numbers, letters) is not the most efficient, why did you take her with you to a cafe/restaurant with your friends, why do you run and chase eatchother in the house like you were a baby too etc. The worst thing about those "advises" is that most of the times they are contradictory like "why didn't you let her cry? You are unable to teach a child discipline" and next moment "what kind of mother you are to let your daughter cry because you don't let her watch that dvd for a 4th time in a row" etc. Even my ex who spends very little time with her (she spends most of his visiting days with her grandparents) is always ready to critisize.My daughter acts like a crazy brat when we spend time with other people because she knows that since I need them or they can make me feel guilty, I don't count when they are around. I have tried to explain that to my daughter and I hope that she understood that we are a team and we shouldn't let those other well-wishers spoil our relationship.
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