Coping With Motherhood

Jamaica
May 3, 2008 3:53pm CST
How do you cope when you are unexpectedly thrust into the role of motherhood? My sister and her husband died in an accident last year and i have sole responsibility of my three teenage nieces.It's one roller coaster ride, i'm dealing with everything from boyfriends to PTAs. I feel like i'm just stumbling around in the dark, stubbing my toes and running into walls. I'm soo clueless sometimes that they tell me what to do. Whenever i see them looking sad or depressed, i feel like such a failure. How do you cope?
1 person likes this
2 responses
@dragon54u (31185)
• United States
3 May 08
What a huge change for all of you! Teens are difficult enough to deal with but not having raised them, it must be incredibly scary. Losing their parents is such a blow for all of you. You can always come here and ask us things, I survived my boys' teen years. Have you considered finding a parent support group in your town? They have them but I can't think of what they call them right now. Call your city's human resources department, they'll know. It will probably help to talk with other people that are raising their relatives' children. There's so many things for you to think about! Mostly, though, I think you just need to be there for them because these years are hard enough but when you've lost both parents--well, I can't begin to imagine. Bless you all, and I hope it gets easier for you. You can call on me anytime.
• Jamaica
4 May 08
Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. It's comforting to know that there are people out there who genuinely care.It's so nice of you to offer since there are so many issues to deal with, for instance, my eldest, who is 16, has become so surly and withdrawn,i've tried so many ways to draw her out but she insists that she wants to be left alone,should i leave her alone or keep trying, what do you think? I have asked our counsellor if there are any support groups, she doesn't know of any but she knows others who are going through similar situations. You have given me a great idea, i think i'll start one what do you think? Thanks a lot for everything and bless you too.
@katsmeow1213 (28715)
• United States
3 May 08
Wow, that must be tough. I can't imagine. I know a few times I feel like I've been thrown into the role of motherhood due to an unplanned pregnancy, but you're situation is completely different. Being that they are teenagers, I wouldn't try to be their mom, just continue to be their aunt. Make sure you take time for yourself as well. Being a caregiver is very demanding, especially with three. Take breaks as often as possible and do things just for you. Keep in mind, they are still coping with the loss of their parents. They love you, but you will never take the place of their mother, and that is a void that will forever be with them. Support them, comfort them, but don't take it personally that they will always prefer their mother to their aunt.
• Jamaica
4 May 08
Thanks so much for responding. Just hearing from you makes me feel so much better.Thanks especially for your advice, you've made me realise that i have been trying to take their mom's place. thanks for your comment it has really opened my eyes.
• United States
4 May 08
It is hard when you are in the situation, sometimes you just need an outsiders perspective. I hope everything works out for you and them.