Ever feel like you are never alone, but always lonely? Well you’re not alone. Motherhood isolation and the loneliness that comes with it is very real and shouldn’t be pushed to the side.
It’s time to talk about it.
When I was pregnant with my son, I felt surrounded by so many friends and family. People would contact me asking how I was feeling and if I was excited that soon I’d be a mother. They would remind me to cherish my sleep because I wouldn’t be getting much once he was here. I was told a bunch of advice, but nobody ever told me how lonely motherhood can get.
Nobody told me that there would be days I would scroll endlessly on Facebook wishing I could reach out to every person I have on my friends list, but feeling too overwhelmed with anxiety to put myself out there. It got to the point where I stopped reacting to or commenting on other mom’s posts. Whatever you do, don’t do that. Engage yourself in conversation if you can.
Nobody told me about the “we should hang out soon” texts that lead nowhere. I would send or receive messages like that, but then plans are never made. It’s very rare that I make plans that I am able to follow through. I don’t know why something always seems to come up.
Nobody told me that I might go days without having someone check in on me and how I was doing (besides my husband or parents.) I never really understood this. When I was pregnant, I felt like a road side attraction. Everyone was so eager to ask how the baby was doing and how pregnancy was treating me, but as soon as my baby was introduced to the world and our friends and family, I felt like everything about me became invisible.
Now definitely don’t get me wrong here. I don’t mind being alone sometimes. I even feel like I have become a homebody since becoming a mother. I just feel like I really need a friend sometimes and it’s crucial to have someone that you can message about those scary diaper stories or the newest milestone your baby hit.
Ways to Fight the Loneliness
Join a club, an organization, or an online community.
There are plenty of different ways for you to reach out into the community. Mine just so happened to be MOPS. Even if you don’t have WIC, go to your local office and ask them if they know of any events happening in your area. Your pediatrician might have a few recommendations as well. Another place to ask is Facebook. If you can, find a local mom group on Facebook and ask the other moms in there. You might even be able to make a friend or two.
Reach out to family and friends.
You may feel like nobody is there for you. (Trust me, I get it and that is what makes this the hardest step for me personally.) Your family and friends will be there for you if you tell them what you’re really feeling. Don’t hide from them, they only want you to be happy. Don’t wait for them to notice and reach out to you, they might not realize what you’re going through without you reaching out to them first. Some of them might just be going through the same thing.
Reach out for help.
If you are struggling trying to stay in control of things or feel like you’re carrying the world on your shoulders, stop for a second. Take a minute to look at how it is affecting you mentally. Why else would you be feeling this way? Ask for help. You might be a super mom, but you don’t need to be a superhero. A part of the reason I think I had issues with feeling like I was alone was I never asked for help, but the people who said they would be there for me would never offer either. If you need help and no one is offering it, you’ll need to reach out and ask for it.
Keep a journal.
Write how you are feeling. Keep a journal or something to release yourself into. I started keeping a bullet journal to help myself stay more organized and in it I have a “one line a day” where I write down something every day. Sometimes it’s a feeling, sometimes it is about something that happened that day. That would be something nice to get your creativeness flowing and keep yourself from drowning in your thoughts and loneliness.
Stay off of social media.
Seeing others post and comparing yourself to them will only make your situation worse. Don’t let yourself wander down those endless feeds looking at smiling faces wishing that was you. It will not make you feel any better.
Think of all the good in things.
It might be a little hard to not feel like your life is just falling apart when you’re dealing with loneliness. Look at this time as a way to connect with yourself. Get to know yourself better. Look at that little human you made and your significant other and think of all the happiness they bring you.
Find a Mama BFF
My biggest piece of advice is to find yourself a mama friend. Go online and meet your due date buddy. I was lucky to have met my best mama friend in person already, even though we barely knew each other before we were pregnant. Download Peanut. Join BabyCenter. Find yourself a friend you can survive motherhood with that isn’t your husband or your own mom.