Only the lonley

Being the stay at home parent of a child with limited speech can be so lonely. Not because of the differences you see in the children of friends or family, or how isolating it can feel when it comes to discussions of progress and development, but at home. With them. It’s a good job I’ve always talked to myself anyway.

We try, really we do, but sometimes it’s as if I’m at home all alone. Even when I’m not. I encourage him the best I can but I don’t think I’ve ever really conveyed how lonely it can be sometimes. When you’re ignored for great swathes of time, when no one answers you, when no one talks back.

It probably would be different if I worked. I would be acknowledged with much more frequency and I know I’d have less days where I question if I actually exist (although I have worked in offices where I’ve had days like that!). But I don’t work, not in the traditional sense. My energy is spent almost entirely raising my boy and getting very little feedback. Three years is a long time to spend feeling ignored. Voiceless.

It sounds crazy, but I feel less alone when I’m on my own, when there’s no one to ignore me, to not respond. I find the times he goes to preschool or that I get to go shopping on my own so refreshing. I might not talk to anyone more than I do at home, but at least in these times I’m not spending so much energy trying illicit some kind of understanding from the person I love most in all the world.

I get how frustrating it can be for a non verbal child, to never have their wants and needs understood. I know because I’ve read about it. It’s what leads to melt downs and tantrums. The best way for me as his parent, to deal with it is to remain calm. But nowhere have I read how frustrating, isolating and heartbreaking it can be for the parent of a non verbal child. How this frustration and sadness can lead to angry outbursts and terrible guilt. I’m the adult. I’m supposed to be the one who makes it all better. But who makes it better for me?

So if you think I’m too often on social media or out and about, then think about why.

I’m just trying to prove I exist.

Comments

  1. Oh, this is such an emotional post. I’m so sorry to hear you are finding things difficult but I hope it has helped sharing it. It is lonely sometimes as a mum, especially when you don’t go out to work (I work at home) at the best of times, but I can see how difficult it must be when your child is not very verbal. I don’t know if you have tried baby sign language, but do you think that might help your little one to say what they are feeling? Keep on being strong and there is nothing wrong with spending a lot of time on social media. I can sometimes go three or four days without having a meaningful conversation with an adult other than my husband and it’s hard. x

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thank you so much! We are looking at signing at the moment and also a picture communication system called PECS. It’s just something you never consider you’ll have to do, after all most of us take chatting away totally for granted (or at least I do!) It can be just so draining, but we do what we’ve got to do hey! Thank you so much for reading and give my love to Wales!

  2. mummyfever says:

    I can imagine that this must be hard and I understand the need to prove you exist. Conversation is needed.My youngest has a few words and my toddler quite a few more but we sign a lot too. Feel free to tweet me for a rant anytime @MummyFever xxxx

    • mrssavageangel says:

      That’s so kind thank you so much! It is hard and can be ridiculously lonely some days, but he’s getting new words every day. He still cant hold a conversation but at least he can ask for a sandwich!

  3. mummyfever says:

    Sorry meant to say #effitfriday lol

  4. I completely understand what you’re going through. Even though my ASD baby is 13 now, I still remember what it was like when he was three and the only form of communication he had was to either show me what he wanted or to repeat what I said to him. When he would repeat my own words back at me, I would get a little frustrated because I knew he could understand me but he couldn’t communicate that he understood. It’s heartbreaking to watch your child go through that and it’s heartbreaking to not be able to have that verbal communication with your child. The moment my boy called me mommy and the moment he said “I love you” for the first time were moments I will never forget. I worked with children 0-3 years old with developmental delays and we worked on sign language. That’s always a possibility. My son was and still is very visual so for him, it was pictures. Hang in there! Visiting from #effitfriday

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thank you so much. We have good days and not so good days, as I’m sure you can imagine. He’s getting there. Being able t tell us what he does want as well as what he doesn’t want is making so much of a difference, but it’s a slow process. We just keep going!

  5. Oh sweetheart this makes me sad reading this. Move back down this way so we can both be a bit less lonely – I definitely have moments of it, though I know it’s different for you. Chin up beaut and I hope things get better for you.

    Stevie xx

  6. Just realised numpty, especially as I know how much little man has come on from this point. I was worried for a minute that he’d regressed xx

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