Bad Mama

"Hindi ako natatakot sayo! Bad ka! Bad ka, Mama!"

I have never felt broken hearted as much as my heart is bleeding these days. Those words came from my 4 year old son whose tantrums have become worst. He has been a good boy, too good that I only had good words to describe him when people ask me how he is as a child. But then the nightmares came - the same day my daughter was born.

He asked for a sibling even before I got pregnant and we knew (or so we thought) that he is ready to be a big brother. We read books about how to be a big brother, watched videos of babies developing and on how to take care of them, had hundreds of discussions on how our lives will change once the baby comes - still they were not enough. I thought sibling rivalry will not happen in the first few years, well it came to us early and I became the villain (surprisingly) in this story.

My husband and I have agreed, before Little V was born, that we'll not spoil our kids. Unfortunately I may have over-nurtured my child and now I have a seniorito at home I need to unspoil.

We don't have helpers at home. Since the day I resigned (more of retired, really) from my desk job in 2013, it was just him and me left at home. We homeschool, bake together, play, took care of his needs, and he gets to join me everywhere I go. We call it a 'date' whenever we go out to eat or shop a little. He loved the attention he got from me. For four and a half years he had all of me and his Papa for himself. Let's add my parents into the equation since he is their first apo. And my in-laws too. You get the picture? A 4-year old boy who has all the attention of the people around him.

Now that the baby's arrived, my attention has been on her. She's exclusively breastfed, clingy, and at a very young age of 3 months knows what she wants and tries (or cries) her best to get it. I became too preoccupied with Baby Z that I'm unable to do chores. I no longer conduct homeschool activities with my first born, we don't go out on dates, and I pretty much ask him to do things by himself since I can't do them for him. I always tell him he needs to do them himself because he's now a Kuya.

My son recently fights me (verbally and physically), ignore my words, is not threatened by my absence, and tells me I'm a bad mom because I did not give in to what he wants.

I'm a bad mom to him because I limit his time watching TV.

I'm a bad mom because I keep telling him to take his afternoon nap.

I'm a bad mom because I took his tablet and refrained him from using gadgets.

I'm a bad mom because I told him to sleep early at night.

I'm the bad mom because I asked him to eat by himself and not be spoon-fed.

I'm the bad mom because I attended to the needs of a crying baby first before him.

I'm the bad mom because I only want what's best for him but he only sees me as the villain.

I'm the bad mom because I always decline when he asks that I read another book, or stop midway because the baby has started to cry.

I'm the bad mom because I am no longer able to attend to his needs as I used to.

I'm the bad mom because he gets sick more frequently.

I'm the bad mom because I no longer prepare activities for our homeschool.

I'm the bad mom because I get mad and I yell.

"Bakit mo ba lagi ako pinagagalitan? Di mo naman ako love eh."

"Si Zoe lang ang love mo."

"Dapat di mo aalaga ang baby. Dapat ako lang aalaga mo."

We don't watch teleseryes yet my son's drama could pass for a tear-jerker episode.

I admit, I yell - a LOT. I have not yelled at him as much as I do now. Speaking to him at his level no longer works for us. So I yell. He still wouldn't listen or worse, he does the opposite he was told.

What irkes me most is when he starts the yelling when he wants something. Or he'll push me, hit me, or would act to punch me while I'm carrying the baby. I'm at my wits' end when the baby is endangered.

He has become violent and I became a nagger.

Hubby and I have decided not to let him use any gadgets or watch TV. Over a couple of weeks his temperamental mood has changed and his tantrums have lessened. Still, we are not yet over this predicament. Just a few days ago, he got really mad at me simply because he wanted me to help him with his shoes. I was changing the baby's nappies but he was so impatient to wait for his turn to be attended that he started yelling.

There are bad days but thankfully the drama has lessened.

We try our best to show him affection because we understand that this change of behavior happened when the baby came. He's seeking attention and the only way he thinks he can get it from me is if he does the opposite of what I want/expect him to do.

I understand that I am at fault. I should give him more attention. I should be more patient. More accommodating. More flexible. Better at multitasking. I should be more.

My heart crushes every time he does these things because I don't know what else to do. I've thought of sending him to school to relieve me from stress even for just a few hours. I feel like throwing the towel. I'm sleep deprived, tired, haven't had a pedicure in months, can't even comb my hair and yet I feel that I'm not enough. Is this post-partum depression? Or is this a normal reaction of a mom who's seen as the antagonist of a preschooler?

I've read in an article that a child who fights back is developing normally and this will help him negotiate and take control of his own life in adulthood. I guess I have to understand him more and change my ways in parenting him. Hirap maging magulang.

Have you ever been called a bad mom?


  1. Hello Mommy Kat, I totally understand you. Our Kuya has been "madrama" now most of the time too, and quite KSP.. like when I carry her sister, dapat sya rin daw i-carry... Our pedia says its normal and the older sibling shows signs of Regression... kasi they are adjusting.. But your newborn is young pa, and Kuya Vito might not be well adjusted yet. I totally understand the yelling.. I have struggles too in controlling my patience and tone of voice. But we've learned to discipline him positively and he seems to understand just as long as one of us (parents) explain to him privately.. never shame a child in public. but this is just our way... Well, my point is, your eldest just misses you.. don't be afraid to ask for help, maybe a relative can help you look after baby for just a day so you can regain your "date" time with your son :) you are NOT a bad mom... let him know too that you feel hurt when you hear him say that, does he want you to be hurt or sad? then just tell him I love you repeatedly to assure him too that he is not "left aside" just because you have a new baby :) Ok lang yan Mama! You're a great mom :)

  2. Thanks, Lique! :) I agree with you. Our kids reflect how we are as parents. I can't expect him to be patient when I'm not, or for him to listen when I don't. He just misses me and I need to see beyond the tantrums and control my emotions - and not be the first to have a meltdown. Haha! We have seen great improvement in his behavior lately, but he still has his moments. Sometimes I think of these tantrums as reminders for me to reflect on how I am as a mom to him... Now that Baby Z is a bit bigger, we can do small dates at 7-11 or our community cafe at the clubhouse! :D

  3. Hi Kat,

    I fully understand what you, your hubby and your son are going through. Although you have mentally prepared your son you have to consider that seeing and feeling the change from Vito's perspective is different. I know it's not easy adjusting and stretching your patience but it's the only way to reaffirm your love. Don't rush changing his habits otherwise he will develop resentment. I suggest you give him little responsibility in taking care of his sister like, getting the diaper, etc. Involve him in your prayer time. This is just the beginning. Hehehe. Will pray for you and the family.

  4. Ninong Ron!! Thank you po for the advice! :) I'm happy to say that Vito's receptive of his responsibilities as a kuya. It's a step. We will try our best to be MORE patient with him. San ba nabibili yang patience at papakyawin ko na. LOL :D

    We miss you po! God bless!

  5. Hi ate! as I have read the title of your blog, I realized that we're goin through the same thing though the second one is still in its way to this wonderful world lol. As soon as baby turned 4 just this month, I discovered that I have to overhaul our routine of using the tablet and watching movies endlessly. I rather used positive scripting instead of saying bawal because he'd suddenly throw tantrums when he hears the word BAWAL. I'd say for instance that playing too much sa tablet would make him have a bad eye sight and your eyes might pop like this (googles eyes popped pictures). As much as possible I don't want my kiddo to be disciplined by being yelled at because I'd have to do a lot of those I guess when they grow It's effective naman, it takes practice to manage ones emotions din talaga, preggy ako ngayon at super magshift ang mood ko. Minsan nasigawan ko sya, it's exhausting than talking to him, then hug him and tell him it's okay that he can't always have what he wants kasi hindi good for him yun. He'd cry and just rant pero nahuhupa din naman pag natapos na yung pain nila from getting away sa toys o gadgets na yan. Hope I could keep up till lumabas na yung isa.hihi

  6. Hi Angel! Congrats sa new baby! You're doing the right thing. :) At that age talaga an automatic 'no' to them would mean chaos sa bahay. It's a good thing you are able to explain to him why he can't get everything he wants. Vito's like that, too. Mabait kasi na-train he can't have everything. Yun lang, when the baby came out, he demands to be taken cared of like subuan, kuhanan ng water, etc. When his Papa was still on leave, si Hubby gumagawa nun. Eh we don't have a yaya at home and no relatives so ako lang nung balik work na si Hubby. I prioritize the baby and he gets jealous kaya warla sya. Since he was a baby, his personality can't be bribed. Di yan nauuto. He's a very vocal, opinionated, negotiating little boy. Sometimes we think we 're talking to an adult! Hahaha! :D He's behaving better naman na these days. Talagang nakaka affect ng ugali ng bata ang screen time, it changes their moods. My fault din kasi I let those baby-sit him on the first few weeks after I gave birth.. I understand you, the mood swings during AND after pregnancy. Hehehe. I hope your little boy would be able to adjust right away when the baby comes. Praying for you and the babies! :)

  7. Aww. I understand how you feel coz that's how my hubby's kids (with the ex-partner) reacted when my son was born. They wouldn't even go near my son! Pero eventually, na-outgrow din nila yun selos sa new baby. Your son would soon be mature enough to play and love the role of being the Kuya. Patience, understanding and love lang ang ipadama mo sa kanya and everything will soon be okay ^-^ Congratulations sa new baby!

  8. Thanks, Mommy Charm! :) I'm happy naman that he shows his love to his sister, he loves being a Kuya. Ako lang talaga inaaway nya minsan. Hehehe.

  9. […] the last quarter of 2015, we were having some concerns on the behavior of Little V. At those moments, I wished that he was not homeschooled. I wished that […]

  10. patience patience patience tsk hindi tlaga madali lalo nat emotionaly, physically stress kana 😞


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