To the Mummas who are feeling lonely right now

Are you feeling increasingly lonely, even though you can’t remember the last time you were actually alone? Did you ever imagine that having this much love could also make you feel this sad? Mumma, we know what that’s like, and so do many other mothers just like you.

The joyful, rewarding moments with a baby can be overshadowed with the intense feeling that life is stuck on repeat. Mundane chore after mundane chore, nappies, crying, settling, and feeding.

A sinking feeling of unhappiness, tiredness, and despair can slowly set in. Feelings that are ignored because a little person needs you, and life must go on. Perhaps you silently cry in the shower, during feeds in the darkness, or when your baby cries and nothing seems to soothe them.

Sometimes that unhappiness can turn into anger, frustration, and the overwhelming urge to scream. But, that screaming usually stays locked up inside you. You push it down, because your precious baby depends on you, so you ignore it. Instead, you snap at others, and everything irritates you.

Then, of course, because mummas can carry so much guilt about even the smallest things, the heavy feelings then lead to shame. You torment yourself with thoughts that there are people who can’t have babies. There are people who are in situations far harder than yours. You know you should be grateful.

After all, you have a healthy, happy baby. You know that you’re lucky that you get to watch them grow, to smile for the first time, to roll, to crawl…but seeing all of those exciting milestones and not always having someone to share them with only intensifies the pangs of loneliness.

But, you keep soldiering on, keeping all of those feelings to yourself. Believing that no one else is going through the same thing, or that this is just what motherhood is, and you should just accept it.

Mumma, the biggest mistake you can make is not sharing these feelings. You matter. Your needs matter. You deserve happiness. 

If you’re drowning in motherhood, it’s time to ask for help. It’s time to stop ignoring your loneliness, your sadness, or your frustration. Those are your internal alarm bells demanding that you take a break, that you need to make time for yourself now. Time to recharge is not a luxury, it’s vital. For you and your family.

Your baby deserves a happy mother, so do it for you and for your baby. Putting your baby’s needs first doesn’t mean putting yours last.

To all the mummas who are feeling lonely, the world hasn’t forgotten you. You might hardly recognise yourself, but you will find YOU again. Put down your armour and do something about it right now. 

Here are some suggestions that might help you.

It will be an effort at first, but it’s essential that you take even the smallest action:

  • If you’re privileged enough to have a supportive partner, speak to them first and come up with some ways that you can have some more time to yourself, as a couple, or with friends and family.
  • Speak to your maternal and child health nurse, who can point you in the direction of local playgroups and baby-friendly activities.
  • Speak to other professionals. Here is a list of available help that’s free, or find out about counselling services under Medicare by speaking to your GP.
  • Find your village of like-minded mums. Join a local mum and bub class, or start a mothers group. Other mums are feeling just like you are, so you might be surprised how reassuring solidarity can be.
  • Get outdoors, take your baby for walks, meet with a friend for a coffee.
  • For the breastfeeding mummas, join your local Australian Breastfeeding Association support group.
  • See our list of simple self-care ideas that can be found in the small daily moments with your baby: Self care doesn’t have to be so complicated.
  • We’re here for you, and we’ve been where you are. Send us a message via our Facebook page, and we can post your questions to our community, anonymously if you prefer. Share with these mummas when days are hard, or when you’ve found something positive that’s helped ease the loneliness.
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