From the Drafts: The Dark Side of Motherhood

By Sarah Aterrado - April 17, 2024

I was thinking of blogging about something because I wanted to take a break from the long-ass essay that I have been writing. I thought I could pull off what my favorite author, Brandon Sanderson, can do. He writes something different if he's feeling burned out. He takes a break from writing novels by writing novellas. But who am I kidding?

So I went through my drafts to see if I could salvage a post, and I've come across this. It's one of those days I felt I was in the dark. And I guess, this needed to be out for mothers out there who feel the same way. Know that you are not alone.

September 18, 2023, 1:11 AM

I snapped. 

I scolded my 3-year old son heavily for spilling his milk on the sofa. Of course, he bawled.

Then my 18-month old daughter slammed her face after running amok on the bed. For a moment there, I thought there was a velociraptor in our room. But nope, it was just Isabel screeching in pain.

Even though Chris is back to his usual happy self and Isabel's all good now with no injuries, I still feel terrible because I could have handled the milk situation better by simply just wiping it up, and I could have stopped Isabel from plummeting two feet down on the concrete floor had I not closed my eyes. 

They have been running around the house again. They're fine. I know it. 

I wanted to write about this yesterday to let off steam. But I couldn't get my thoughts straight because I spent most of the time yesterday harrowed with guilt—so much guilt. 

This is just one of those times I hate being a mom. I know I am not allowed to feel this way, certainly not tell the righteous world about it, but there I said it.

I knew what I was getting myself into. I signed up for this (3 kids, duh). And while I knew motherhood would not be easy, I thought it would at least be rewarding.

But nope.

I gave up a career and mental well-being to be constantly frustrated, exhausted, isolated, and bitter toward all other mothers who act like motherhood is so wonderful as if they have it all together.

But I am sick of motherhood being sugar-coated.  People always say that motherhood is the most beautiful thing, but they always leave out the depression, exhaustion, frustration, anxiety, and the day-to-day struggles.

Here's a fact: children can really suck the life out of you. Sure, the hugs and kisses are wonderful. Retail therapy is good. Counting your blessings helps. But if I'm going to be honest about it, they're not enough to fully counterbalance all the physical, emotional, and mental fatigue you're going through. 

There are a hundred of moments with my kids that were fun and memorable, but I was so exhausted that I could not enjoy them 100%. It's not because I do not have a time off or I do not get enough support. I do. In fact, much more than I needed. Jan has been so supportive since Day 1, and has been stepping up and doing most of the parenting work while having a full-time job. 

The problem is the demon inside me. Hormonal? Chemical imbalance? Or maybe it's just me. Maybe I am just not wired for this.

My kids didn't ask to be born that's why I am ridden with guilt even more. 

I love my kids more than life itself and I wouldn't change a thing. I do not hate them, not in any lifetime. But right now, I hate being a mom. It’s a dark secret. It's a taboo. It's an awful feeling. But it's real.

Wow. That was heavy. But I don't remember feeling that way now. Maybe writing about it helped me get it off my chest.

It's still a groundhog day. I still wake up each day with the same routine, same fatigued feeling, but I am in a much better situation now. So mommies, if you are guilt-ridden and if you are hating all things motherhood right now, I honestly do not know what to say to you because I know parenting will never get easy. But for me, all those feelings eventually went away. Hang in there. Your time to feel better will come too. 

  • Share:

You Might Also Like