Babies: 3 - 6 Months
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Are you selfish or selfless?

My Mom and I often discuss this. Since becoming a Mother, do you find yourself less selfish than ever? I have a girlfriend that had a little girl 3 weeks before me and tends to be pretty selfish as far as I am concerned. She told me a few weeks ago that she had no patience and that she could not handle being tied down to her LO. Her little girl is a dream baby. I swear the child does not cry. I often wonder how she would handle a child like mine. Elizabeth is very needy and busy. She also cried constantly until she was 3 months old.

My daughter is my world, and I would make any sacrafices for her. I don't consider anything I do for her a burden. I just don't understand how anyone could.

 

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Re: Are you selfish or selfless?

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    ibisibis member

    I am not a big fan of the concept of mothers as being selfless. I don't think that is a sustainable way to life. Mothers who martyr themselves when they're raising their kids tend to crack at some point... having a self and taking care of yourself are important parts of being human. 

    No need to go to extremes. You don't have to be selfish or selfless. You can be a whole person who is also nurturing.  

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    mrgnmrgn member
    imageibis:

    I am not a big fan of the concept of mothers as being selfless. I don't think that is a sustainable way to life. Mothers who martyr themselves when they're raising their kids tend to crack at some point... having a self and taking care of yourself are important parts of being human. 

    No need to go to extremes. You don't have to be selfish or selfless. You can be a whole person who is also nurturing.  

    I agree with this. 

    Being a mom, especially to a young baby, is a thankless job. So there has to be a point where you take a minute or two for yourself. I'm not saying your friend is "right." Her perspective, at least the way you've put it, sounds a little off to me as well. But I definitely don't think I am (or want to be considered) completely selfless. It requires a balance, IMO.

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    I am both.  When it comes to caring for my daughter I am more selfless than ever.  But I have also realized the importance of "me" and needing to take care of me and in that respect I am more selfish than ever.  
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    Everybody is both.  It is selfish to have a baby if that's what you want.  It is selfish not to adopt.  It is selfish to not have a baby if that's what you want.  It is selfish to do everything for your baby and not others if your baby is the most important thing to you.

    Every decision that you make is technically "selfish" because it is your choice and what you want. 

    For example, I'm not taking LO to an out of state wedding because it's what is best for her and best for my family.  The mother of the bride thinks I'm being selfish because I'm not thinking about her daughter.

    As for my relationship with my daughter...I never consider her a burden.  But I also take plenty of time for me.  (mostly because DH wants her to himself all the time.  Wink )  It's a balance.

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    I would say I'm definitely both.  In most situations DD comes first, but there are definitely times when I need to do things for me so I don't loose who I am. 

    My sister, on the other hand, sounds more like your friend.  She tends to VERY easily get frustrated with her daughter and constantly leaves her with my parents.  She always talks about how she needs a break, but her DH does 99% of the housework, cooking, and child rearing, and she goes out all.the.time!  Sometimes I feel like she views LO as an accessory, like Paris Hilton views her dogs....

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    imageibis:

    I am not a big fan of the concept of mothers as being selfless. I don't think that is a sustainable way to life. Mothers who martyr themselves when they're raising their kids tend to crack at some point... having a self and taking care of yourself are important parts of being human. 

    No need to go to extremes. You don't have to be selfish or selfless. You can be a whole person who is also nurturing.  

    Couldn't agree more.  I think mothers who always say they are selfless and call other mom's selfish are rediculous.  If I gave 100% to my LO, what would I have left for my job, friends, family, husband and for myeself.  I think it is completely unhealthy to be either of them...a good mix is perfect.  To what the OP's friend said.  Honestly, I can't judge because I don't know what she was referring to or your conversation. It sounds like just a random statement that I bet sounds a lot better if not taken out of context.  I couldn't be connected to my LO all of the time either...I would go insane.  I love my away time, but miss him terribly when I'm not by him.  So goes the life of a mother.

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    imageCulkinator54:

    I would say I'm definitely both.  In most situations DD comes first, but there are definitely times when I need to do things for me so I don't loose who I am. 

    My sister, on the other hand, sounds more like your friend.  She tends to VERY easily get frustrated with her daughter and constantly leaves her with my parents.  She always talks about how she needs a break, but her DH does 99% of the housework, cooking, and child rearing, and she goes out all.the.time!  Sometimes I feel like she views LO as an accessory, like Paris Hilton views her dogs....

    This is exactly what I am talking about. I understand the importance of being me and taking care of myself. But, I can't handle her dumping her child off at her Mom's and complaining about her being up in the middle of the night. Yes, I don't love getting up two to three times a night. It makes me tired the next day. But, she is only a baby for a short time, and I don't want to miss a second of it. Maybe that makes me selfish that I want time with my baby.

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    imagecatycombs:
    imageCulkinator54:

    I would say I'm definitely both.  In most situations DD comes first, but there are definitely times when I need to do things for me so I don't loose who I am. 

    My sister, on the other hand, sounds more like your friend.  She tends to VERY easily get frustrated with her daughter and constantly leaves her with my parents.  She always talks about how she needs a break, but her DH does 99% of the housework, cooking, and child rearing, and she goes out all.the.time!  Sometimes I feel like she views LO as an accessory, like Paris Hilton views her dogs....

    This is exactly what I am talking about. I understand the importance of being me and taking care of myself. But, I can't handle her dumping her child off at her Mom's and complaining about her being up in the middle of the night. Yes, I don't love getting up two to three times a night. It makes me tired the next day. But, she is only a baby for a short time, and I don't want to miss a second of it. Maybe that makes me selfish that I want time with my baby.

    This is going to sound harsh, but why are you judging her?  People come on here to complain all of the time.  I know it was VERY hard on me to get up 4-7 times in the middle of the night.  I talked to my sister all of the time about it (her LO is a year older).  Just because I needed to be like I wasn't alone and that it will get better.  Maybe she is looking for a  little support.  I am so impressed with the mothers that get up that many times a night still and don't complain.  I wouldn't trade doing that for not having my LO in a million years.  I would go through it over and over again just to have him.  But when I was in the middle of it, it was hard.  Maybe she is being a drama queen, but maybe you could just try supporting her.  Not every mom is a supper woman! 

    Side Note: I'm not saying that giving your LO to your mom all of the time is right at all.  I'm just sick of people judging others so much and talking behind their backs.  I feel bad for your sister.  If your relationship is anything like mine is with my sister, I would be devistated if she went behind my back and talked sh!t about me when all I wanted was support.  Then again, my sister is the kind of person to (very nicely) tell me when I'm being stupid.

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    imagebuttrflychic05:
    I am both.  When it comes to caring for my daughter I am more selfless than ever.  But I have also realized the importance of "me" and needing to take care of me and in that respect I am more selfish than ever.  

    Well said. This is me too!

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    I just don't think she appreciates what a wonderful child she has.

     Is it not human to judge others? I would be completely full of shitt if I said I didn't judge people. It doesn't mean I am less supportive or caring.

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    imagecatycombs:

    I just don't think she appreciates what a wonderful child she has.

     Is it not human to judge others? I would be completely full of shitt if I said I didn't judge people. It doesn't mean I am less supportive or caring.

    True, it would be wrong to say I never judge.  But a family member or friend, just wrong if you aren't going to talk to them about it.  It is different to not agree with them or their beliefs, but to bring them down to others...well then you really aren't a true friend or a good family member if you ask me. 

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    imageplaneNsimple:
    imagecatycombs:

    I just don't think she appreciates what a wonderful child she has.

     Is it not human to judge others? I would be completely full of shitt if I said I didn't judge people. It doesn't mean I am less supportive or caring.

    True, it would be wrong to say I never judge.  But a family member or friend, just wrong if you aren't going to talk to them about it.  It is different to not agree with them or their beliefs, but to bring them down to others...well then you really aren't a true friend or a good family member if you ask me. 

    This is not behind her back. I talk to her about it and tell her how I feel about my LO. I just don't say, btw you are being selfish and unappreciative. I was just trying to get input.

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    I should say too that I normally really like your posts on here and think you are a nice person.  This post just chapped me and I have no idea why...it isn't like this has happened to me or anything.
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    imagecatycombs:
    imageplaneNsimple:
    imagecatycombs:

    I just don't think she appreciates what a wonderful child she has.

     Is it not human to judge others? I would be completely full of shitt if I said I didn't judge people. It doesn't mean I am less supportive or caring.

    True, it would be wrong to say I never judge.  But a family member or friend, just wrong if you aren't going to talk to them about it.  It is different to not agree with them or their beliefs, but to bring them down to others...well then you really aren't a true friend or a good family member if you ask me. 

    This is not behind her back. I talk to her about it and tell her how I feel about my LO. I just don't say, btw you are being selfish and unappreciative. I was just trying to get input.

    Do you tell her how you feel about her LO and her feelings towards being a mom?  What you are doing is name calling...and that isn't supportive.  The only person that I knew that felt that overwhelmed had depression and felt all a lone.  Name calling would not have helped that situation at all.  Especially if she found out I was saying it behind her back.  That would have killed her.

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    imageplaneNsimple:
    imagecatycombs:
    imageplaneNsimple:
    imagecatycombs:

    I just don't think she appreciates what a wonderful child she has.

     Is it not human to judge others? I would be completely full of shitt if I said I didn't judge people. It doesn't mean I am less supportive or caring.

    True, it would be wrong to say I never judge.  But a family member or friend, just wrong if you aren't going to talk to them about it.  It is different to not agree with them or their beliefs, but to bring them down to others...well then you really aren't a true friend or a good family member if you ask me. 

    This is not behind her back. I talk to her about it and tell her how I feel about my LO. I just don't say, btw you are being selfish and unappreciative. I was just trying to get input.

    Do you tell her how you feel about her LO and her feelings towards being a mom?  What you are doing is name calling...and that isn't supportive.  The only person that I knew that felt that overwhelmed had depression and felt all a lone.  Name calling would not have helped that situation at all.  Especially if she found out I was saying it behind her back.  That would have killed her.

    I am not name calling, I assure you. She is a good friend of mine, and if she was depressed I would certainly know it. I come from a family that suffers from depression. I would never want to hurt her, and I don't feel that asking this question on this message board makes me a bad friend. Is it not ok that I feel like she is being selfish? I am not trying to bad mouth her as a Mother. I am a new Mother, and I don't think I have that right. I just don't understand why she has no patience for her little girl. Why is that so bad?

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    Well this is my first baby and don't have any other children... but I think of my child being born and what an incredibly wonderful gift that is and I'm overwhelmed with joy.  I may be totally wrong, but it sounds like your friend was not totally ready to be a mother.  I think when people are put in a situation they aren't ready for, they are completely still selfish in their thinking.  Someone who is ready and understands exactly what being a parent entails, in my opinion, would handle this adjustment to motherhood better.  While I agree that mothers should still do for themselves... being there for your baby has to be your number 1 priority... if its not, why are you a parent?
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    Your daughter is absolutely beautiful. Seriously sooooooooo cute.
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