Help! I don't like my child
05/05/2009 at 06:13 AM

When I was pregnant with my daughter, I had a lot of problems and never felt "attatched" to her. After she was born, it took about three months for me to feel like she was mine. Now that she's eight, I just feel like I shouldn't have had her. I know that sounds bad, but I just cant' handle being a mother. She constantly lies about everything, she gets into trouble at school, and she's very emotional. She's always been sensitive. Everything is whoah is me or either a total tantrum. I thought she would grow out of that stage, but it's never happened. I find myself saying hateful things and not wanting to live with my family anymore. My husband handles it better than me, but he's really getting tired of how she acts too. We just don't know how to handle her. My husband and I try to be good parents. We would never hurt her. I think that it's just my coping skills with children. I don't want to scar her for life with the way I handle things. I just don't know what to do. Sometimes I just wish that there was a "happy pill" that I could take and make me happy to be a mother or at least not so uptight around her. I just feel bad that she got stuck with me.

Wow. First of all, I have to say I appreciate your honesty about a topic that must've been really hard for you to open up about. No one wants to feel like a bad parent. I wish I cld tell you there's a perfect solution out there for you, but along w/ being a parent, comes lots of emotions. It's the toughest job in the world. The first thing that came to mind is to ask if you have a history of depression or if depression runs in your family. My next thought is to suggest that you go to therapy. You and your husband shld go together. You mentioned that you wld never intentionally hurt your daughter. I believe you are sincere about that. I'm sure you only want what's best for her, as any parent wld want for their child. How were your coping skills w/ life in general before you had your daughter? Were you generally happy? And when it was just you and your husband? You said you sometimes feel like picking up and leaving your family. You also said you find yourself saying hateful things. All of this sounds like the result of stresses that you're unable to cope w/ in a healthy way. You need to first take care of yourself. You then need to focus on being a good mom to your daughter. Having a negative attitude towards your child is definitely going to hurt her in the long run, whether you mean it or not. In my opinion, as hard as this sounds, I think you shld take a breather from your family, and get yourself some help. Like a drug addict going to rehab, you wld be helping yourself get better, not only for you, but for your family. Don't get me wrong. Your family needs you. They just need you to be healthy and happy. Be honest with your husband, just as you are being honest here. The first step is admitting to having a problem. Let your family be your support system. Don't push them away. W/ the right help, you can be the mother you want to be to your daughter, and the mom your daughter really needs. Hang in there, and be strong.


Well, before I had my daughter, I think that I was happier. I've never been a "chipper" person. I guess that I felt that was what I was suppose to do. Get married and have a child. It wouldn't be so hard, just adjusting my schedule. I could dress her up in pretty clothes, blah, blah, blah. That's not how it turned out. I got a child that has always cried a lot and well it just isn't what I thought it was going to be. I guess that maybe I've been selfish. I know that it's changed my relationship with my husband. Some people are just not meant to be parents. I don't like anyone else's children, and I thought it would be different for my own child. As far as I know, there hasn't been any depression in my family, but maybe they just covered it up with alcohol. That does run in my family. Anyway, thanks for the post.


Had another thought in addition to you seeking therapy. Do you work? Many women who have children choose to work b/c they don't want to let go of their careers to stay home. If you're not currently working, maybe getting a job wld be a good thing for you. Some moms are just not cracked up to stay home. Do you have anyone who cld take care of your daughter while you're working? If not, you can always consider a nanny or an afterschool childcare program. Having an extra set of hands can help take some of the stress off you. Talk to your husband about chipping in more as well. If you both work together and you divide the workload, things will be much easier for everyone.
Like I said before, being a parent is not easy. You need to invest a lot of time and energy into your children. You can't check out now. You made the decision to have your daughter and raise her, so you need to do whatever it takes to ensure that she grows up to be a happy and healthy young woman. I don't know how much of your feelings have impacted her already, but it's not too late to change that. There will often be times when you get frustrated w/ your daughter, but never let those frustrations stand in the way of the love you have for your child. Always tell your daughter how much you love her above all else. Be there for her when she needs you. The whining and the whoa is me attitude are normal things. You just need to learn how to better cope w/ them.
I strongly believe that if you're not happy w/ yourself, then you'll never be happy w/ anyone else. Find time for yourself, do things you enjoy doing, get a job, whatever it takes. At the end of the day, you will come home to your family a much happier person. Hope this helps.


Just got your second post. Maybe the alcohol addiction that runs in your family has affected your attitude. Growing up, did your parents both drink? How do you think that impacted you? What about now? Did your parents have the same attitude towards you as you have w/ your daughter? Maybe there's a connection there that you shld look into further.
I know what you mean about life not turning out the way you expect it to. I lost both my mom and my brother. I also have a son who has a disability. Life really sucks sometimes, but you can't give up. Use your emotions to make yourself a stronger person. Don't let them defeat you.


Well, I do work and that's because I couldn't handle staying at home. I had to have adult interaction and conversations. My daughter goes to school and then my husband picks her up. He gets off work earlier than I do. They do homework and stuff together before I get home. I feel like we split the duty evenly.
As far as the alcoholism in my family, it was my grandfather and my real father. So, I didn't really grow up around it. My parents got divorced early and she got me away from that. I don't know, I never had a relationship with my dad because he was a jerk. My mother did the best thing and move several states away. She was a good person and never treated me bad. I do resent that I had such a horrible father, but I didn't have any contact with him.
Sometimes even though your not raised around someone, you can act just like them. I don't know if that's what I was pre-disposed to do or not. I just know that I recognize the problem, want to fix it, but just can't keep myself from feeling that way. I'm going to check into therapy. I've been talking to my husband about it for a while. He's supportive, but sometimes I think he thinks that it's just not that serious. I've told him how I've been feeling and he said maybe I should go get some help. It's just expensive to get counseling. I don't think that they could cure me in one visit, so maybe I'll try the rubber band technique. You know, wear a rubber band and everytime you say something or do something wrong, pop the rubber band. LOL. Maybe it would help, maybe not.


It's a good sign that you want to fix the problem instead of just throw in the towel w/out trying. Your husband doesn't understand how big a deal this is b/c he's not you, and he doesn't feel what you feel. I still think counceling is the way to go. Look into your insurance to see if you get covered for therapy. If not, consider a clinic for counceling. Often you can find centers that offer therapy at low costs or even no cost. It wldn't hurt to try.
You may even want to try meditation tapes or yoga. I never tried either, but I've heard they're very effective in relieving stress.


I had post-partum depression, and so did one of my daughters, but it sounds like the problem started with you even before delivery. I think therapy is a very good idea, with a medical doctor, not a psychologist. Psychologists are good if the problem is behavioral, that is their area of expertise, but I wonder if your problem is medical.

When I saw my daughter going through this lack of attachment all I could do was support her and her family by watching the baby and helping with what I could. It was very difficult. Things have turned out well, plenty of love to go around for everyone.


One thought I had was to go to your medical dr. and request that you have a routine blood exam checking out your iron levels and thyroid levels. Your thyroid can cause problems. I'd also discuss how I was feeling and then maybe even try an antidepressant. Also therapy/counseling wouldn't hurt to check out. Some charge on a sliding scale as to what you and your husband make, so it might be cheaper then you think. Even if it is expensive, it might be worth it in the long run... think about it. Good luck to you.



Please seek professional and spiritual attention for you and your daughter. Most likely her reactions are from your treatment and feelings toward her. Children can sense when they are not wanted. I'm sure her acting out is a direct result of that. Your feelings are most likely passed down from your parents. Sounds like maybe you weren't loved like you should. It's a never-ending battle that's passed on, and it's hard to break on your own. I also sense that you know you're doing damage to your daughter. The fact that you are asking for help is a sign you want to do better and that you do love her even though you can't feel it. She may be a free spirit who is expressive compared to your more reserved nature. If this is so, loosen the reigns a bit. Ask her what it is she likes to do. Have conversations with her. Find out who she is without judgement. Tell her you love her and that you want her to be happy and that you will make that happen. Then , Mom, make it happen. Seek professional/spiritual help for you and your family. God bless.


From my own personal experience, the thing that matter's the most is being involved with a spiritual community.

I have a 9 yr old girl, and 12 yr old boy.

We started taking them to church activities at an early age and didn't have many problems out of the norm. Then for a period of time we "fell out of the habit" of going to church regularly.

When we did this, we noticed a huge difference in their attitudes and behavior. When they went to church, they talked about positive things and always talked about how they and their friends there discussed family and spiritual life. After we stopped going, they became more influenced by their friends at school and began bringing home a lot of negative talk and issues.

So, we got them back into church and they returned to their normal positive selves again.
(Also, my wife and I noticed the change in our own personal relationship.)

I'm not saying that going to church would solve your problem, but it's one thing that could help with it.

And I think my talks and prayers with God made a big difference also, so feel free to discuss the situation with Him if you need to.

I hope and pray you will be led to a solution soon.

God Bless.


I can't help but weigh in here. I read your post and admire your honesty as well, however I would like to add a couple things. I have three children and two out of the three I relate to very much. My middle child is incredibly difficult. We have all been to therapy to help with this issue, but I do still have a hard time with her. My daughter has some issues that are hers alone that she has to work on, I can guide her but cannot fix them, only she can do that. I really hear your frustration, I came across your post because I googled: I don't like my child. Despite the knowledge, effort and understanding our family has put in to this issue, I still get very frustrated dealing with her. I see a therapist to help me deal with helping her and want to see a therapist because I want to offer something good to her. I am disappointed in the response you received that asked if you were depressed etc. etc.. It is not always the mother, those remarks are uneducated and shortsighted. It can be the child! If it is the child, the child needs help to learn to work on themselves and the parents need some perspective on what belongs to the kid and what belongs to the parent and a plan to help the child deal with themselves and a plan to learn the best way to help the child. In other words, I need help learning to deal with her. She needs help learning to deal with herself. In the end they grow up, leave and had better be able to deal with themselves. Having an understanding of your child's issues helped me with patience and understanding. I have more to offer her because I understand where she is coming from and know that it isn't about me. Blaming the mom is not always the answer. Give yourself the tools to help her and you will feel much better!


I too, respect the honesty of your post, and my heart goes out to you, your daughter, and every family experiencing similar feelings and thoughts, and I believe with all my heart I can help! I came on this site to do some research, with no intention of mentioning my book, but there's no way I can leave this post and some others without suggesting "From a Child's Perception" as required reading! I’ve been where you are, but more importantly I’ve been where your daughter is too, so I’m intimately acquainted with both sides of this issue! It’s not just another parenting book, because I don’t know of any other book like “From a Child’s Perception”, and it’s not a “how to” book because children simply don’t come with instructions, but the food for thought in this book has changed lives and I beg you to give it a chance to make a difference in your family, too. The only thing you have to lose is a little of your time and a few bucks, but the rewards will be priceless if it makes family life less dramatic and/or more harmonious. Please give it an opportunity to lend understanding to both you, your daughter, and your family unit! Go to and search "From a Child's Perception"


Thank you for your honesty. You must accept the fact that loving your own kids is not going to be automatic. Don't feel bad about it. Just make sure that you do what you need to do as a parent and look out for her. The affection will follow.

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