This is my first time posting. I visited the site today as I’m struggling and just needed to find tools to help until I see my doctor again.
There is not one single area of my life that is going well right now - everything is extremely stressful. My eldest son has moved back home and is struggling to find work, so I’m supporting him financially and emotionally.
My daughter is going through a hard time, dealing with the assault of her best friend, so I’m worrying about her well-being. I'm not sure if the mother of the person who assaulted her friend knows what's happened yet, but it’s only a matter of time until she finds out. I have to see the mother every day at work as her youngest attends my preschool and I keep playing different scenarios over in my head about what will happen or be said when she finds out.
My youngest son is causing the most concern. He has ongoing health issues that result in him missing a LOT of school. He’s seeing doctors and has a specialist appointment coming up to investigate the cause. But, I’m worried constantly about what his future holds and how all of this will affect him in the long run.
Then there’s work. I run a preschool and am quite literally run off my feet at the moment, picking up the work load of staff members due to injuries and illnesses, falling behind on my own work as a result, having to deal with certain staff members approaching me a dozen times a day to bag someone else out or wanting me to make every little decision for them. Staff whining about their rosters and having dummy spits when I literally cannot give them their own way. Chasing up accounts I’m having ongoing issues with and having to answer to upper management about it.
Then there’s my finances. I work my butt off, but between the cost of living crisis, having three teenagers to support on my own, car issues etc. I have nothing to show for it. I hold my breath for the last several days of every pay cycle, just hoping I’ll make it through to the next pay day without the kids needing anything.
Finally, the last big thing going on, is that after 8 years of complete silence, the father of my children reached out, via our 18 year-old, to ask for a divorce. I’m so happy to finally be getting the divorce, but so angry that after not having any contact with any of our children in so long, he used our son solely for that purpose - because he wanted something, not because he was interested in being a father. I shouldn’t be surprised, this piece of work has 6 children with three different women and hasn’t stuck around to raise any of them. I just can’t comprehend it. There’s no way I’d have missed a second of seeing our children grow up.
I've been on medication for years. It has always worked for me and I KNOW how much of a mess I’d be right now if not for the medication. But, I find with everything going on right now that everything is such an effort. All I want to do is sleep, as that’s the only time I get a mental break from everything. However, even my sleep is interrupted by violent and often gory nightmares. I’m depressed and can’t see things getting better any time soon.
Thank you if you made it this far.
'Struggling' sounds like an understatement.
You seem accosted from all sides from family needs/issues, work as 'manager' and work as 'subordinate', and then the resurfacing of old wounds from the past which adds another dimension challenging past, present and future concerns - dare I suggest you have too much on your plate?
But you did ask for tools and I can offer this:
-> Your eldest son has received your assistance in accommodation and basic provision - that should be enough to facilitate his own recovery in a finite term. He might/should be able to contribute something be it financial or labour to ease your burden.
-> How the mother of the daughter, the friend of your daughter, responds is well outside your jurisdiction of involvement.
-> Your youngest son is seeing the relevant specialists - his future will find its own path regardless. You can support and encourage to promote confidence in this pursuit.
-> Work is a factor of time - it begins and it ends; and that is where you must leave it. You cannot control staff murmurings, debtors refusal, demands of management, or anything beyond your capacity.
-> Whatever you missed with your children in the past is not an impediment for how you interact in the future - relationships can be rebuilt. Husband's divorce is a positive 'release' for you.
Designate time for family, time for work, and time for yourself in equal proportion without overlaps or distraction. Although you will still be wearing three hats, at least they won't all be on your head at the same time.
Wow, there are so many things going on it must be so hard to know where to even start. From what you've said, it sounds like you've had these demands placed on you for quite some time now and it's no wonder you just want a mental break.
tranzcrybe had a really good suggestion in terms of trying to specifically designate time and reduce the mental load at any given time. Even though it's going to be hard to reduce the actual workload, hopefully there's a way to reduce the mental workload.
A related thought I have is that the most tiring part about significant life challenges is that it makes us constantly think and worry about them. Often, we are already doing the best we can and are worried that things may not work out. I think this is especially true where children (ours or others) are involved, because we want so much more for them. I find people are actually incredibly resilient and things generally work out if we support them even just a little, especially since there are always other support options available to them. In my own experience, downplaying my own importance to improving people's lives has really helped reduce the stress from supporting others, including people in my own family. It's not that they don't need help, but that they don't need so much of my help specifically.
Anyway, I hope some of these stresses alleviate soon. Please feel welcome to let us know how you go as you wait to see your doctor again. If you haven't done so already, it may help to speak to the BeyondBlue support line (1300 224 636). They are generally quite good at listening, even if they can't necessarily 'fix' the issues.