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A Tired Momma's Secret Revealed {on Secret Week}

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Little Miss Momma: A Tired Momma's Secret Revealed {on Secret Week}

Monday, November 29, 2010

A Tired Momma's Secret Revealed {on Secret Week}

SECRET WEEK: secret #3
{need to get caught up, click here}

This Momma's secret is intense--and it touched me to the very core. Here it is:

Dear LMM readers,

My secret is horrible.
And I want you to know that I've told no one else except my husband,
not even my Mum because I'm affraid of how she will look at me after.

Uh, it's hard to write.
Basically my Husband has been away for 9 months training to be a police officer. He's just finished and started work near home today so I'm hoping things get better. While he was away I started out okay...

keeping the house clean,

keeping up with the washing,

going to work and taking kids to childcare

and basically keeping my kids entertained and happy.

But then, the longer he was away, the worse I got.
Several things slipped, the washing was just an enormous mountain. Going to the supermarket seemed like an insurmountatble task. I forgot to put out the bins for collection--a few weeks in a row....

Worse still, my relationship with my eldest son became unbearable.
He's only 3 and as 3 yr olds do, he started pushing the boundaries to see what he could get away with while daddy was gone. 

He stopped listening to me.
He ignored anything I asked him to do.
He yelled, he screamed.
I would have to ask him 10 times to get him to pick up his toys.
He drew on the brand new hardwood floor I had laid for his dad's birthday.

My nerves were shot.
I had lost control of my son.

And there was no one to pick up the slack.
Every morning I would get up and it would start all over again.

At the same time I was losing control of myself.
I became soooo quick to anger.
Not just anger, real rage.

And while I was almost screaming at my 3 yr old, (oh that's painful to write)
I was thinking "Stop!! He's just a child, he doesn't know!"
Eventually for the last month I could barely look at him with any real affection. How disgusting is that?!

It's getting better now that my husbands home home.
But what I worry about now is have I mentally/emotionally scared him?!
Have I somehow stunted him by the way I've treated him?

Oh god what sort of mother could do that to their child? Me. I'm that sort of Mother (oh my gosh, thats like being stabbed)

I never ever imagined being a Mother could push me to become such a monster. And I have no real exuse. I only hope my poor little boy can forgive me.

He still likes to hold my hand and cuddle on the couch with me.
He still tells me that I'm his best friend (and it makes me feel even more guilty). And he still runs to me when I pick him up from day care yelling 'Mummy! I missed you!'. 

He's such a beautiful soul and I am so blessed that he is mine.

So there it is in black and white. I don't know what you will think when you read this. I'm so ashamed. I don't think that when you asked for secrets you were really after something like this! So I'm sorry to dump this in your inbox and please don't feel that you need to reply.

It does feel better having someone else know...
I guess...


Let's show Kate some comment love, shall we

I will be posting several secrets daily throughout this entire week. So be sure to check back often, you're not going to want to miss these.

You can grab your very own Secret Series Button on the right sidebar---->
Simply copy the code, then got to "add a gadget" in your blogger dashboard, then add "html", then paste the code, then click "save" {thats it}!

 On Friday, we will conclude this portion of the Secret Series with a link up party--where I will encourage YOU to link up a post with your secret {no matter how big or small--serious or silly}.

Do you have a secret you want to email me?
Send it to
And please let me know your "alias" or if I can use your real name.



At November 29, 2010 at 8:49 AM , Blogger Rochelle Sodipo said...

First of all...pat yourself on the back for doing EVERYTHING on your own for 9 months! As you are well aware, motherhood does NOT come with a handbook that tells us what to do at every turn. It's okay that you yelled and got upset. All mothers do it! It was an intense moment that has passed. You know what to do to prevent that behavior in the future and you're still a loving and doting mother. Don't beat yourself up for being human!

At November 29, 2010 at 8:57 AM , Blogger christa said...

being a mom is hard...a lot harder than people think. you're so invested in these little ones life's. i've always said motherhood is incredible and it's also the first time you ever feel like physically hurting someone...seriously. but you've been alone, not that it's an excuse but sister, i don't know a lot of women that would not have done the exact same thing. don't focus on this anymore. focus on working on your relationship with your have not permanently damaged him, he's young and you can have talks with him, just you and him and try and explain or just be with him, kiss him, hug him, love him. that's all any child wants is unconditional love and you still have plenty of that to give. love you kate, you're not alone.

At November 29, 2010 at 8:57 AM , Blogger daniii♥ said...

I've had moments where all I wanted to do was sit in bed and cry and not do anything else. I have a tough time when my husband goes away for a weekend. I couldn't imagine 9 months! I don't think you scarred your son, either. You did the best you could do. Next time ask for help from someone!

At November 29, 2010 at 9:09 AM , Blogger scarletpoppe said...

If I could hug you I would. I applaud you for doing everything on your own for so long. I have my husband here every day but still have feelings like this once in a while. Like if one more thing piles on the mountain, I am going to break. Your son is only 3. You have so much time to show him the real you, the real momma he loves. Children are so forgiving and even forgetful. My only advice is to pray. Get on your knees and pray for God to give you patience. When I'm at my lowest, the only ONE who can truly help is God.
Take care.

At November 29, 2010 at 9:09 AM , Blogger Dharma said...

Kate, I wish it got easier as they get older. being imperfect gives us only perfect examples to show our children what *not* to do and to use each of our own failings as lessons for life. Of course your little boy still believes in you and he knows you are his best friend....because you are. Human, imperfect, are.

At November 29, 2010 at 9:12 AM , Blogger Shirley said...

Kate I got goosebumps reading this. I just want to come over and give you a break, let you rest your mind and your body. Being a mother is the hardest job in the world and doing it alone is next to impossible. My heart breaks for you. Looks like it is time to take care of yourself and to ask those around you for help. No one should have to deal with all of that responsibilty alone.

At November 29, 2010 at 9:18 AM , Blogger Jen B! said...

Kate - Don't be so hard on yourself. We, as moms, have a tendency to be extremely hard on ourselves...trying to maintain a "perfect" house, being an energetic, patient, fun mom, all the while keeping a gigantic smile on our face. But lets face it, that's not reality and it drives me CRAZY when other moms cannot admit they've had days like the ones you had during your husband's nine month training leave. That's why I love LMM so much, she's real and so are you by the sounds of it! I commend you and I for one want you to realize that you are NOT alone. Now, take a deep breath and go hug that son who stills loves you like nobodies business!

At November 29, 2010 at 9:19 AM , Blogger Pedey @ Do You Smell That!!? said...

I don't claim to know or understand completely how it was for you to have your son all on your own for 9 months, but I think I have an idea. I have 4 children, ages 1, 3, 5 & 7. My husband's schedule has him gone on shifts that are either 48 or 72 hours (2 or 3 full days). I understand the stress of having to be mother AND father. Of having to do the house work AND all the 'man chores' (and in your case also being the provider!) Of being the only parent there to resolve concerns and settle a child's temper. Of never having a break from the exhaustion and emotional draining that comes from the constant pecking a young child can do. And the RESENTMENT that builds toward your husband for putting you in a position to become a monster. I have yelled. I have lost my temper. I have seen myself act like a person I am disgusted with. But it doesn't mean I don't love my children. It doesn't mean I AM a monster. And it doesn't mean tomorrow can't be better. Just hug your boy. Explain to him why you lost your temper. He's little but he'll understand your sincerity. Let him know Mommy made a mistake. That you didn't mean the angry things you said. That even YOU don't like yourself when you yell. But, most importantly, please know that YOU are not a bad person. You said mean WORDS. You ACTED in anger. You DID things you're not proud of. But they are not YOU. You are that boys world. You are his mother and he adores you in spite of the past nine months. Hug him, love him & let it go. (((HUGS)))

At November 29, 2010 at 9:35 AM , Blogger  Justine said...

Kate even if your son is a little surprised, he'll forgive you! You're his mom.

Just Better Together

At November 29, 2010 at 9:43 AM , Blogger kristy.lynn @ kristy.makes said...

it is a horrible feeling to know that you've lost your mind even if for just a little bit, and screamed like a crazed woman at your child. i've been there. more than once. and i probably will be again. you are SOOOO not alone. but you are human. and you are a wonderful mother. he will forgive you. he will forget every single thing, and love you like it never happened. forgiveness is a wonderful thing.. and it is given so freely by our little ones..

At November 29, 2010 at 10:19 AM , Blogger Jessie K said...

Wow, this really struck a cord with me and, if the comments are any indication, many others! I have done the same thing. I hate myself when I am like that. I'm glad to know, finally, that I'm not alone. That I am human and, as one, will make mistakes and error in judgements. Kate, here is a cyber hug and just know that we know you are a good mom.

At November 29, 2010 at 10:22 AM , Blogger Unknown said...

oh Kate, I think we have all been there and anyone saying that haven't are either lying or in denial. My secret? (which i wasn't willing to tell until I heard yours) is that sometimes I wish I never had kids. I imagine a life that others have with the freedom to do what they want, when they want and not have to take of others every second of the day. I have 5 kids between the ages of 11 and 2 and I know I should be happy that I get to stay home (I used to work full time) but boy that last 2 year old completely wipes me out.

At November 29, 2010 at 10:26 AM , Blogger stickysentiments said...

Forgive yourself. That is the hardest part because as long as the behavior toward your son doesn't continue, he has forgiven and forgotten. Kids are resilient, as long as they feel loved and secure. Give yourself a break and commit to move past this and be a loving mother. This feeling of guilt will pass and you and your son will be fine. He is NOT scarred for life.

At November 29, 2010 at 10:29 AM , Blogger Tyler-Ashlee's Mommy said...

OMG! If Kate were me (and we share names), I'd be sharing the same secret! KUDOS Kate!

At November 29, 2010 at 10:46 AM , Blogger Sparks Family said...

Oh kate... How I can relate. I know a lot of the comments here are all about "good job being on your own is hard" but what does it say when I'm like that and I have help. I saw myself in your words "At the same time I was losing control of myself.
I became soooo quick to anger.
Not just anger, real rage.". Sometimes it was like someone else took over. I would loose control and then after I would look back and say "who was that?" And looking at things as though they are impossible to do. Simple things like laundry and dishes.
the overwhelming feeling of drowning. For me its called depression. Mine actually stemmed from undiagnosed ADD. This Comment is not to tell you you have ADD or to tell you you need to be medicated. But When I read your secret it was clear as day! The love of your life was away, you had an adjusting boundary pushing 3 year old and were lonely. Depression is a real and ugly thing. My heart breaks for you. Just remember children are incredible resilient. My kids (3 under 6) still love me. And you'd be surprised at how far a heart felt apology and "I'm trying to be better" chat can go. even with a 3 year old. Dont beat yourself up over the way you felt toward him although speaking from experience you probably will for a while.
things will only get better and I'm a true believer in therapy. you dont have to have a diagnosed problem, just need someone to unload on. Husbands just want to fix things. Girlfriends no matter how great still might judge but Therapist are just there to listen.

At November 29, 2010 at 10:47 AM , Blogger Sparks Family said...

Wow sorry that was so long Kate. Lots of love your way.
And thank you LMM I stalk lots of craft blogs but this is the first on to be brave enough to deal with REAL things. I'm going to go grab my button now.

At November 29, 2010 at 10:56 AM , Blogger Lee Ann said...

I went through something similar when my son was 2ish. I was in such a deep depression that began the year earlier when I had my second child. It got so bad that at one point I pushed my child down. It was unintentional, but I did give him a little shove towards his bedroom but he ended up falling backwards. The look on his face as he was falling was enough for me to think about it every day of my life! He trusted me and looks towards me for his safety and I-his mother-pushed him down. That was enough to snap me out of my deep depression (not fully though as I still struggle with it even 8 years later). Ive never told anyone that--ever--until now. And Im so ashamed that Im bawling.We are not perfect parents--but at least you recognize what happened in your life. Some people never even do that, thus their behaviors continue. Youre a good mom Kate!

At November 29, 2010 at 11:18 AM , Blogger Lauri said...

Oh my goodness my dear Kate - please cut yourself a little slack :) Being a mom is HARD. And I cannot imagine my hubby being gone for 9 months. You accomplished SO MANY things all alone - please try to focus on that rather than on the negative. Unfortunately, we (especially women, I think) tend to dwell on the negative and forget the positive. Your little guy is 3 - he'll be just fine :)

Give yourself a big hug from me (who is a random stranger, but, hey....I'd take it!).

Blessings to you this Christmas season!

At November 29, 2010 at 11:25 AM , Blogger Steph Ulrich said...

You are only human after all. You recognized the problem before it escalated to something much worse. I went through something like this with my own 3 YO son when my baby girl was born. I feel guilty everyday, but I love him more then life itself and snuggle and love him every chance I get. It gets better and better. Your son loves you and has already forgiven you. It's time to forgive your self. Hugs XOXO

At November 29, 2010 at 12:00 PM , Blogger Ang xoxo said...

I'm sending some big positive vibes your way that each day is going to get easier for you. Hang in there and know we are all behind you:) XOXO

At November 29, 2010 at 12:22 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have so been there. There are some days I almost hate my children. I can't control my anger towards them. I'm so sorry because I know how awful it makes you feel. Children are wonderful at forgiving. They are the best. My kids have forgiven me every time my rage strikes. And it's more than I want to ever admit.

At November 29, 2010 at 1:42 PM , Blogger The Patterson's said...

We've all been there and if someone says they haven't, they are lying. Doing it on your own is sooooo hard and you should be proud of yourself. I went thru two years of severe sleep deprevation because of my youngest and it made me be someone I'm not and do things I would never had done. Thankfully I never physically hurt someone but I felt like I damaged my kids too emotionally. Thankfully kids are very forgiving! Good luck and thanks for being so honest.

At November 29, 2010 at 2:09 PM , Blogger Mrs. B said...

How lucky us moms are to have such beautiful and forgiving children. Don't ever for a second feel guilty for FEELING. My husband is in the military and has made one six month, one nine month and is in his second month of a a nine month tour to Bahrain right now. I feel like a single mom. Some days I pray that my two young sons will sleep just five more minutes so I can not hear them fight or scream or ask for daddy. It's hard, and I've broken down more than once, and despite my behavior, my two little monkeys always want mama around. I've often wondered why, but I tell myself it's because they're hurting the same way I am... they act out when they're missing their dad. They know I can't always be supermom and I slip up and they're always there to pick me up when I fall, even when it's my job to do that for them.

At November 29, 2010 at 2:12 PM , Blogger Molly Hammond said...

Kate, You are not alone! We are here supporting you! Hugs to you. :)

Ashley, I love your blog. Thank you for giving women & moms a forum to support each other.

At November 29, 2010 at 2:17 PM , Blogger Heidi said...

I want to give you a cyber hug. I have been there and done that with all 3 of my boys. YOUR SON WILL BE OKAY. I know this from personal experience. children will forgive their parents and turn out to be healthy happy children sometimes in spite of their parents. There is hope and it will get better.

At November 29, 2010 at 3:29 PM , Anonymous Aurora said...

Although I know that my comment will be lost in the sea of other comments, I have to add one!
My husband was deployed to Iraq in 2008. At first, it was tough keeping up with EVERYTHING by myself-including 2 kids, but I figured I would get a routine down. Nope, never happened. Things just got harder and harder, and I just got angrier and angrier. During that ear, I turned into that "monster mom" that Kate talked about and felt guilty and frustrated all at the same time. Now that my husband is home things have gotten better. He's been back for a looooooong time and I'm still not used to having help. The worst part is that he's still in the National Guard and goes away one weekend a month or training and 2 weeks a year. Those weekends and 2 weeks are SO difficult that it's hard to stand. I just try to forget the housework and make a fun weekend for the kids, and it helps me stay happy, positive and calm :)
Kate is not a bad mother. Kate is a mother...just like the rest of us. She's a real mom who gets pushed to her limits and explodes once in a while and that is OK. Chances are, our kids won't remember anyway, right? Well, at least that's what I keep telling myself!

At November 29, 2010 at 8:32 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my. I want to hug you. You are not the only GOOD parent that has lost her cool with her children.

I remember when my husband was a away for work for an extended amount of time. By the end of that time, I was emotionally spent. I was completely isolated from extended family and I didn't feel like I had good enough friends to lean on. I had friends...but I had only known them a year or less. So...I was constantly snapping at my child and picking at him. I am sure he was sick of me. One time I remember getting so upset with him for not helping me with the dishes like he would usually....he was only 2! I verbally berated him in a way that made no sense and that I am completely ashamed of. And since then when dad is gone too much and I feel thread bare, I have more experiences that I am not proud of. Times that I wonder...did I just emotionally abuse my child? But...I pray about it and know that although it was totally awful the way I behaved, I didn't cross that line. And chances are you didn't too. It is those low points that make me never want to behave that way again and you know what...I don't. Each day, each week, each year, each child I get better. As long as I focus on what I want to be and not what I am ashamed of. Focusing on the bad makes me behave worse. But focusing on how I want to be helps me be better. It is really that simple. Now when I get to that breaking point I actually handle it better...because I have been there and I get to do it over how I wish I would have before.

Something that always helps me feel better is asking my children for forgiveness. That way they learn by my example how to make amends and that I recognize that even I am not perfect. Then I pray and ask God to forgive me. Peace always comes.

At November 30, 2010 at 12:11 AM , Blogger ellie g said...

Oh my dear! I want to tell you something from a child of a Mom who yelled a lot. My Mom was widowed at age 32 with 3 kids at home and 1 on the way. She yelled a lot. Actually, we all yelled a lot.

And I guess I never really understood it very well, until my husband went out of town for an extended period of time...and I realized how much my mood escalated and my temper heightened. And how, were he here, I would get a break, and calm down. And since he wasn't...I wasn't getting that opportunity.

It immediately reminded me of my Mom. Who had to do things all by herself. And who yelled. A lot. And NEVER had anyone to come home and help her calm down.

I learned a great lesson about my Mom that day. And any feelings I had about all that yelling, were dampened. I respect her. I honor her. And I think I understand her more.

You are a wonderful woman who is trying to do her best. We all have bad days. We WILL do things to our kids that we wish we could take back.

But if we love them. And show them that love. One day, they'll turn around and realize how much we really DO love them.

I know I feel that way. He will too.

At November 30, 2010 at 7:47 AM , Blogger Briann said...

I'm not a mother, and have no idea about the responsibility you bear in taking care of your children in the absence of a spouse. However, I am familiar with the breaking point of a person when your other half is gone. My husband was deployed to Iraq for a year and I thought I couldn't handle it. Granted, it was only me and my 4 animals (2 cats/2 dogs), but everyone has their breaking point.

Thank you for sharing your secret with us. Your courage is astounding.

At November 30, 2010 at 9:08 AM , Blogger Amanda @ Life with A.Co said...


Although I don't have any children myself, yet, I can't IMAGINE having to be a single parent for NINE MONTHS despite being married and having a wonderful partner.

I feel like this has been such a test on you u and you are NOT a bad person. I'm sure you are not alone either - our nerves, emotions and patience can only take SO MUCH!!!

Bravo for sharing your story, and making others feel better about themselves.

A.Co @ A.Co est. 1984

At November 30, 2010 at 9:54 AM , Blogger Jocelyn said...

This post has brought me strength. I don't have it as rough as you, Kate. My husband isn't away for long periods of time, and I don't work. But I can totally identify with you and your feelings of being a mommy monster. I lose it sometimes with my oldest. She can really dig in her heels and put up a power struggle. I get so angry, and I end up feeling so guilty that the monster came out. Parenting is hard!

You are not alone, Kate. You are not a bad mother. You are doing the best you can. I would repeat what others have said, that prayer can be a great help. I've felt myself losing it before, and if I remember to pray, I'm much better at keeping my cool. You are strong enough. You can do this. Asking for help from the Lord or from other people does not show weakness. You're even stronger if you can admit you need help.

Forgive yourself and keep trying!

At November 30, 2010 at 11:07 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing! It gives us other "Mommy Monsters" hope. You are SO not alone!

At December 1, 2010 at 10:53 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can see we have all been there at one or another...but I', still there. How do we get out? How do we stop yelling, and casting dirty looks, and being miserable...wanting to sleep all the time...resenting EVERYONE....asking your child what she/he was thinking....I've come to the conclusion that I am depressed....I'm in a family that would NEVR accept that as a "real" thing.
I'm stuck and although I have never hurt my children (and never would,,,they are my ENTIRE world) each day that passes, I want to just die. Just to finally get rest. and also because i feel they'd be better off without me.
Oh man.....

At December 19, 2010 at 5:25 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for saying it out loud Kate! I am up early this morning because I am ashamed of the way I yelled at my children last night. My husband is home ALL the time because he works from home...and I still snap sometimes. I am not proud of it and I am so grateful to know that I am not alone. I came from a yelling family and I don't want that for my kids but sometimes I just lose it and it's like I am watching myself and knowing I am wrong but I go on any way. I pray it doesn't damage my kids. I pray that when they grow up they will not remember me screaming at them. I love them more than life itself but sometimes the pressures of life, a bad economy, the stress of the holidays and the demands of motherhood and being a wife are all too much to bear! Thank you for posting so I know I am not alone in feeling like a Monster Mom...I get better every year but there is always that one time that pushes my buttons and I'm back to feeling like a terrible mother. Everyone seems more patient than me, more understanding and level's nice to know I'm not alone. Thank you Kate!

At December 22, 2010 at 5:07 PM , Anonymous Katie said...

Kate- I think every parent has done something they feel huge amounts of regret over to their children. Sit him down and tell him you are sorry, even if he doesn't really understand - it will make you feel better. Then sit yourself down and really forgive yourself. It's hard to be a parent and it's even harder when you have a long period of time of having to be the mom and the dad. There is no manual, no training guide, no how-to program to tell us parents how to handle every situation.

At February 10, 2011 at 9:28 PM , Blogger Erica @ Acire Adventures said...

i know this post is a few months old, but I just couldn't help commenting. When I was a child, my parents split up. My dad moved out and my mom thought that our house was so very important to my sister and I that she bought my dad out of his half instead of selling it and buying a much more appropriately sized house. Not only did she take on a huge amount of debt by doing this, but also a ton of extra work that came with taking care of the large house, yard, dog, etc. all alone. We still saw my dad, but my mom was definitely the primary caregiver.

Needless to say, there were times when she would get very stressed out. I was a pretty carefree (and often careless) child. And she yelled. She yelled at me a lot. And one time, it got a little worse than yelling. I was TERRIFIED of my mom as a child. Sometimes she would apologize when she really overreacted, but I don't remember getting many apologies. It really, really would have meant a lot to me if she would have explained herself at the time. A child doesn't understand the responsibility placed on a woman who is left alone with such a massive responsibility, and as a three year old, he won't fully understand even when it is explained to him, but someday he will GET IT. And if you took the time to explain to him where you are coming from, to be honest and show him the respect and trust that it takes to share such intimate and hurtful emotions, then he will respect that. My mom and I had a ton of conflicts the whole time I lived with her. As a teenager I went from fearing her, to resenting her. I rebelled a lot. I also became resentful of my sister because I was always yelled at and punished, my sister was amazingly well behaved. It caused a lot of problems because it went unresolved, and finally at the age of 20 I got it all ironed out and finally put it all to rest. It would have been a lot easier if I had understood before that.

And Kate, good luck! I really wish you the best. Boys can be such a handful and I can't even imagine having to manage parenting duties alone, plus everything else in life. You are not alone, and you are NOT A BAD MOM. You are a human, none of us are anywhere near perfect.


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