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New Mom Feels Guilty For Leaving Her Kids Alone After Realizing She Can't Wake Up To Their Crying

Photo: Juanmonino, miodrag ignjatovic, gusat silviu / Canva
mom sleeping through kids making chaos

A mom on Reddit posted on behalf of her daughter, who is a new mom with two kids and has recently been struggling with taking care of them. She has two sons, ages 2 and 3, and although she’s a “fantastic mom,” according to her own mother who wrote the post, there’s one problem — she doesn’t wake up when they start crying.

Posting to the “r/Parenting” subreddit looking for advice on what the new mom can do, she provided a little bit of background on their situation and how her daughter is handling the circumstances.

The new mom feels guilty for leaving her kids alone when she can’t wake up to their cries.

The new mom’s mother explained that her daughter has been living with her since January, and things have been less than okay. “She can’t wake up to her kid’s crying. Her boys are basically unsupervised for however long it takes her to wake up on her own. There [have] been many disasters,” she wrote in her post.

One particular morning, the baby was screaming and crying for her to wake up, but she wouldn’t budge until her mom came in and got her up herself. As a result, she feels awful and is unsure of what to do. 

new mom cant wake up when her kids cry Photo: Reddit

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Looking for advice, the grandmother asked the people of Reddit to chime in with any advice they may have — and people were surprisingly helpful.

Everyone seemed to agree that a solution needs to be reached for this problem, with the top comment on the post giving insightful bits of advice for the family in general. Above all else, the new mom needs to figure out what’s going on with her sleep schedule and see whether or not she’s suffering from some medical disorder.

Suggestions for her to start sleeping earlier, eating healthier, using sleep supplements, or even changing up her daily routine in order to better accommodate her sleeping habits were brought up. But considering it’s a “newish problem that’s been happening for a few weeks now,” as her mother relayed, some people were inclined to believe that she may be suffering from an underlying medical issue.

Fortunately, her family supports her completely and has been working with her to find a solution, with the woman's mom updating the post, saying they were going to consult a sleep specialist. 

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Her desire to be a good mother is a sign that she is a great mom.

The most important thing about the situation is that the mother recognizes this behavior and wants to change it. But it also speaks to a feeling that many moms can relate to: mom guilt.

Worrying about how well you’re doing in any role in life is always a good indicator of how much you care about the role you’re performing. Although it can be a tricky thing to cope with and manage, “mom guilt” falls under the same idea.

As defined by the Cleveland Clinic, mom guilt is “a name given to the feelings of guilt and shame some people feel when they don’t live up to their own or others’ expectations in their role as a parent. It’s like an internal dialogue that tells you you’re failing as a caregiver.”

These expectations may come from society, but they can also come from your own expectations and the way you want to parent. But wanting to be a good parent is a sign that you’re already headed in the right direction.

In order to better manage these feelings of guilt, functional medicine specialist Melissa Young, MD gave the Cleveland Clinic a few tips, with the first thing on the list being self-care. Consulting a sleep specialist in order to figure out what’s going on with your sleep counts as self-care, so this mom is certainly taking every step in the right direction.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is an Assistant Editor for YourTango who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics.