I Never Knew Motherhood Could Feel This Lonely...

motherhood new parents postpartum postpartum anxiety postpartum depression Mar 08, 2024
new mom, lonely mom

No one told me how lonely I would feel in motherhood. Can you relate?

 I remember being up in the middle of the night, feeding my baby while everyone else slept and feeling so much love for my baby, while also feeling the crushing weight of isolation. This caught me so off guard. I also remember feeling so alone as I held my baby in a room full of family, sitting on the couch just the two of us. How can I feel so grateful for this baby and this new life as a mom while also feeling so alone and forgotten? How can I feel so alone even when I am in the presence of so many people?! Cue the mom guilt and confusion! If you have felt alone as a new mom, I want you to know you are not alone and there are some significant factors that contribute to this. Let’s unpack this further.

 One of the most isolating aspects of early motherhood is the seemingly endless nights. The rest of the world sleeps (including your partner) while you rock, feed, and console your baby. It's during these lonely hours that you may question whether anyone else out there is going through the same thing. You may also notice feelings of resentment towards your partner or feel the weight of being the default parent with overnight care or feeding for your baby.

 You may also feel the isolation (even more so when around others!) because no one else is going through the sleepless nights, cluster feeding, rollercoaster of emotions, sleep deprivation, or trying to heal and figure out who the f you are now, quite like you are in this exact moment. Everyone is busy asking about the baby or reminding you to soak it all up which can make you feel unseen and alone.

 Another major contributing factor to the loneliness in motherhood is that this new role as mom brings with it a profound shift in identity. Your world transforms overnight as you assume the role of mom, leaving behind parts of your former self. It's a natural part of the transition, but it can be incredibly lonely when you realize that the world sees you primarily as "mom" and you feel like you can't possibly be all the things everyone expects you to be. There is also grief that comes with all of these shifts and changes and none of this makes you a bad mom! You can miss who you were before baby AND be a good mom.

 A significant contributor to the loneliness of motherhood is the reluctance of moms to share the struggles and hardships openly. Society often perpetuates the myth that motherhood should come naturally and be filled with nothing but love and happiness. In reality, the journey is filled with ups and downs, moments of frustration, and a profound sense of being overwhelmed.

 This pressure to present a perfect image can lead to a culture of silence. New moms are often afraid to admit their difficulties, fearing judgment or being seen as inadequate. This silence only perpetuates the loneliness. When you're not honest about your struggles, you miss out on the opportunity to connect with other moms who might be experiencing the same challenges. But picking and choosing who you can be honest with is an important skill to build because unfortunately it is not safe to share with just anyone.

 Connecting with other moms who have experienced the same sleepless nights, identity shifts, and self-doubt can be immensely comforting. Finding one (or more) moms that get it and can be open and vulnerable too can be so healing. And it's crucial to recognize that seeking help, whether from a partner, family member, friend, or mental health professional, is a sign of strength, not weakness.

 As postpartum therapists, we want to reassure you that you are not alone in your feelings of loneliness. There is a community of moms out there who understand what you're going through. Reach out, share your experiences, and know that you are heard, understood, and supported. It can take time to find and create your village, but it is possible. If you haven’t already, come join our community of amazing mamas on Instagram @thriveafterbaby

And we have an exciting announcement for you…we are so pumped to share our upcoming Happy Mama Membership! Get access to our courses, downloadables, new workbook, and more for an incredible price. Choose from a 3 month membership or 12 month membership based on your needs. If you’re ready to ditch the overwhelm, build confidence, and feel like yourself again after baby, this membership is for you.

 To join the waitlist and get access to a special discount once we officially launch, click here. We are so excited to have you as a part of our community!

Sending you love,

Alex & Sasha



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