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Tired Parents

Tired Parents
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Whether you’ve been up all night comforting a teething baby or waiting on a teenager finally coming home, parenting can be exhausting.

It’s a common myth that once babies are sleeping through the night you’ll get enough sleep and adjust to your new lifestyle. But unfortunately it doesn’t quite work out like that. Between looking after the kids, working, running a household, maintaining a good relationship with your partner and trying to have something that at least resembles a social life, it’s little wonder that many parents still feel tired well past the toddler years.

Parents often feel guilty about being tired but usually it can’t be helped and comes as part of the parenting package. Knowing that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with though so here are a few tips to help you through when you’re feeling worn out.

Make time to rest

This is usually easier said than done but it doesn’t need to involve sleep. Have your partner make the dinner while you soak in the bath. Read a book or meditate while the children are engrossed in a DVD. Snuggle in beside the kids at bedtime or play your music in the car on the way to work. Anything that lets your mind wander from parenting and tasks you have to do will help you relax. If you find you’re stuck for time then you might want to consider dropping one or two of your children’s activities to allow you all some family down time.

Sleep patterns

It may be difficult to get into a healthy sleeping pattern, especially if you have a baby, but doing so will help you get the rest you need. Whenever possible try to go to bed and get up at the same time every day. Avoid caffeine and nicotine before bedtime and don’t use alcohol to help get you off to sleep. Exercise in the form of a brisk morning walk with the buggy or squeezing in a workout on the way into work can be great for helping you sleep at night. Napping when your baby or toddler naps can be helpful in getting you through the day but it can leave some people feeling worse when they wake so find out what works for you.

Encourage bonding

Extended family and close friends can be great sources of support when you’re feeling a bit run down. Asking them to take the kids for a couple of hours will give you a chance to rest but also allows them the opportunity to spend some quality time together. Building a close bond with grandparents or aunts and uncles can benefit kids in many ways and it’s likely that the grown ups will enjoy spending time with the children too. Just make sure that you use the time wisely and take of yourself before starting on any to-do lists.

Tired Parents

Be organised

Being organised can be the key difference to getting a good night’s sleep and lying awake thinking of all the things that have to be done in the morning. Prepare packed lunches and have everyone’s clothes for the next day ready the night before. If you can’t do everything in advance then write it down so that you won’t forget and you won’t need to worry about it until the time comes.

Lower your standards

Parents often place expectations on themselves that aren’t always realistic. Everyone wants the perfect home but sometimes that’s just not achievable, especially when you have children. Housework can slide when you’re shattered, and you know what? That’s not a crime. Nobody is going to judge you for letting a few dishes pile up in the sink so use that time to relax and refocus your energy.

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About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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