There is no parent around that doesn’t feel worn out. Parenting is exhausting and there really is no way to escape this.
The arrival of a baby is the start of sleepless nights and losing your days running after your child. No matter how much you love them and how much joy this brings – it is still exhausting!
For many parents, the hope is that as their baby grows, parenting will become less exhausting. They hold onto this hope month after month, and soon there seems to be no end in sight for the exhaustion!
When does parenting get less exhausting?
Unfortunately, it takes quite some time before parenting becomes less exhausting. Having a newborn is by no means a walk in the park, but your baby spends most of their time sleeping and in one place. As your baby grows and starts moving, things get more exhausting!
The different stages all have their perks, but the more movement your baby has and the more independent they become, the more running around you have to do.
If you are holding onto hope that parenting gets less exhausting eventually, keep reading to find out when this might happen.
What Is The Hardest Baby Stage?
Many new parents will swear that the newborn stage is the hardest. Moms would have just been through childbirth and have to deal with recovery and looking after a newborn who likes to wake up quite a bit during the night.
However, this stage is fairly easy compared to what is to come. Yes, the night feeds can suck away all of your sleep, but your baby will spend most of their time asleep and will stay put in one place.
Many parents say that the hardest baby stage is the toddler stage, between 18 months and 2-years-old. This is also considered the cutest age, but that is a trick of nature so that we don’t completely give up on our cuties during the most exhausting part!
Toddlers between this age love to throw tantrums, get into everything they should not be getting into, fight against everything you want them to do, and possibly go through a sleep regression and wake up more at night.
It is so easy to lose your cool at this stage, especially coupled in with the fact that you are just so tired.
Your days are spent running after them, and nights are spent on a seemingly endless bedtime routine. By the time they are asleep, you are too exhausted to spend some time on your own or with your partner.
This stage is definitely the hardest for most parents, but it is definitely rounded out by the absolute cuteness of the age!
What Are The Most Exhausting Years Of Parenting?
Exhausting and hard do not always go hand in hand. Sometimes the most exhausting years of parenting aren’t necessarily the hardest.
It is safe to say that the first two years of parenting are the most exhausting. You are dealing with night feeds, a non-stop toddler who is learning to move on their own and interact with the world around them, and their newly found independence that they just love to show!
These years are exhausting, but the harder years are the ones where your child goes to school and starts dealing with the world on their own. They are no longer in your little cocoon and are subjected to some of the bad things that come with venturing out by themselves.
So while the baby years are the most exhausting, things don’t necessarily get easier from there. You might be getting more sleep at night, but you are also dealing with more emotional stress and giving your child the independence to work through the world on their own!
Tips To Deal With Parenting Burnout
Parenting burnouts aren’t just something to joke about to new parents. These burnouts have a serious effect on someone’s mental health, and any parent experiencing one needs to try and soothe themselves, find some comfort, and even seek help if needed.
So much attention is put on a new baby, that parents are often pushed to the side, even by themselves. Here are some things that you can do if you are experiencing parenting burnout – please take the time to care for yourself. Your baby will be better for it.
Ask for help
So many parents feel ashamed to ask for help. They feel as though they need to do it all on their own, without needing to ask for assistance.
It takes a village, and raising a baby should not be done on your own. Do not feel bad to ask for help, whether it be from your partner, family, or friends. Someone watching your baby for an hour in the afternoon can give you all the time you need to recuperate and rest.
Use this time and reconnect with yourself and spend time just being you, not just the new mom part of you.
Know you are good enough
There is so much pressure on new parents, with picture-perfect parenting being shown to us 24/7 through television and social media.
You need to stop comparing yourself to these images and ideas, not only because you should know that you are doing your best, but because these images are unrealistic and only half the story.
You just need to be good enough. Be consistent, be caring, and be present for your kids. This does not mean dedicating every second of your life to your kids, but just being good enough and cutting yourself some slack.
It is easy for a new parent to slip out of their old routine, it is bound to happen with a new baby. But this could contribute to a burnout, with you not feeling like your old self anymore.
To combat this, you need to take some time to practice self-care. This could be continuing with your skincare routine in the morning or reading a book before bed at night.
Practicing some sort of self-care can help you feel yourself again, and can help you remember that you are valued and important, no matter how much time you spend just being a mom.
Every Stage Has Challenges
There is not one definitive stage of parenting that is easiest or hardest. Each stage comes with its different challenges, whether it be sleeplessness or emotional stress.
Parenting is tough and not for the faint of heart, but it is so worth it, and every part comes with its great milestones and happy moments that far outweigh the exhaustion!
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