It has NOTHING to do with you. Your baby’s crying doesn’t say anything negative about you as a parent or as a person.
You’re doing an amazing job, just as you are.You love your child and you’re doing the best you can to get through the long, exhausting days that come with raising a tiny, helpless human being.
Crying is not a reflection of how good or bad a parent you are. It is not a reflection of how good or bad a person you are. And most importantly, it is NOT a reflection of your child’s love for you.
Now, you might be laughing a bit and thinking “Well of course not, Melissa!” But let me tell you, I cannot count the number of times I have heard new mothers saying “My baby won’t stop crying” in one breath and “My baby doesn’t like me,” “My baby likes his (insert spouse or support person) better,” or, even worse “My baby doesn’t love me” in the next breath.
And all I can say is – NO, NO, NO!
Once you start thinking like that, or believing that, it affects how you treat your baby. It might be imperceptible at first, but I always see the changes happening, even in those first few days in the hospital. A mother doesn’t pick up her baby as often, or as quickly. She shrinks, bit by bit, into the background.
It breaks my heart to see it EVERY SINGLE TIME.
And I can tell you, whether your baby is 3 hours old, 3 days old, 3 months old or even 3 years old – your baby LOVES YOU!
Love can be a very complex thing to fully understand. But those distinctions come later; it’s not something your baby is capable of understanding. Right now, all you need to know is – your baby loves you unconditionally, ALWAYS.
Sure, it might not always feel like love or even look like it, but they do. And this I know for a fact. I myself was a fussy baby and despite all the trials and tribulations with my own parents, I sincerely love them. I always have and I know that deep in my core. And I’m sure you would agree the same about your own parents.
When babies cry – and won’t stop crying – it can trigger so many emotions in us as adults. It can turn the most confident CEO into a confused, scared, little boy. And that’s OK!
What we as adults need to do is to see these emotional triggers within ourselves, and not ignore them. And then we need to remember – and to focus on the fact – that our child loves us and this fit of crying is but a passing storm. It is NOT, nor is it ever, a judgment on you.
Parenting is a difficult journey, but you are amazing, and beautiful, and flawed. And that’s precisely why your baby loves you!
Lastly, I want to encourage you that if you feel like are struggling to stay centered, calm and avoid hurting yourself or your baby, please reach out to your doctor or an anonymous counselor (available all day, every day by dialing – 800-4 A CHILD).
You are NOT alone.