Hall perfectly sums up why motherhood is so damn hard
There’s no shortage of articles out there explaining the mental load of motherhood and how it feels impossible to share this with a partner. And it is impossible, because there are just some things that women (not always women, but usually) take on that their partners do not. Add this to the unequal workload so many new moms face, and the combination can leave you feeling frustrated and alone, as Australian author and blogger Constance Hall recently pointed out.
In her post, Hall begins by calling out all the people who tell her that she and her husband are “couple goals” and how lucky she is that he’s so hands-on after welcoming their new baby. “The truth is that having a baby has pushed my relationship to the absolute edge,” she admits.
The mother of five says she’s used to upping her workload when a new baby arrives, but that having a baby with someone is vastly different than sharing the monumental responsibility.
“I’m not man bashing or airing my dirty laundry or doing any of the other ridiculous things that people say when someone speaks out in their truth against a system that greatly benefits one gender while driving another insane.”
She also explains the shift in her relationship, feeling more like “a ball and chain” than someone her husband enjoys spending time around. And because so much of the care and feeding is left to the mothers, Hall also perfectly nails just how lonely it can be.
“I wake up with my baby at 6 am and I’m in bed exhausted by 8 pm. That’s the thing about babies, they take away all of your alone time and somehow leave you feeling incredibly lonely,” she wrote.
That loneliness eventually gives way to anger and resentment, a familiar pattern for many new moms. “I’m fucking exhausted, so many night feeds, remembering to buy school stuff for next year, to bath all my kids, wash all the clothes, dishes, supermarket, take them out to tire them out, answer 5 thousand questions a day with a smile and keep this house looking relatively clean because someone walked into it the other day and laughed and said ‘don’t clean up for us.’ But the truth is I fucking had, for hours.”
For Hall, the fantasy of “couple goals” is just that — a fantasy. Because no matter how hard you try or how much your partner contributes, a mother gives up so much more.
And it’s ok to be pissed about that sometimes. “In the spirit of honesty,” Hall continues, “having a baby is one thing, sharing that baby is a completely different story.”
She also points out that there is a lot of love in her marriage and the two will continue to create a path together. “Because as my recently divorced male friend told me, ‘you think having a baby and wife is depressing.. until they leave you. And then you learn the meaning of depressing.’”