What do you stay at home wives/mothers/fathers do when you start feeling the loneliness that is often experienced in our vocation? Mostly it feels overwhelming, even though sometimes its nice to have quiet time to myself. ;) We only have one car so getting out is not an option. What do you all do?
I get back to work. (Something I should be doing now instead of staring at this screen and torturing the keyboard with my ham-handed attempts at typing... :rolleyes: )
We only have one car, too, so I can feel your pain there.
When I get desperate for adult interaction I get online (Facebook, IM, forums) or I call someone like my mom or my sister.
I also make sure to get out of the house (some where I can walk) to hang out with other adults a couple times a week. For now that means playgroups and story times with other stay at home moms.
Follow your heart. That’s what.
I thought that was why God invented soap operas
(Running and hiding now)
I talk to people on Catholic forums about “safe” subjects. (Religion, morals and the Church) or I get on facebook and look for family/friends online to chat with. (after the housework is done and the kids are napping and or busy)
I’m lucky too because my husband if he’s not at home (his day off) I talk with him on IM since that’s one of his main ways of communicating at work besides the phone.
I hope my life experience in this area will help you, but I am also a stay at home mom. Currently, I am busy with homeschooling my 10 yr. old daughter and housework and all that, but when I was single and at home a lot when I was single, I too was lonely. Let me explain.
I first moved out of my parents' house when I finished nursing school and I went off into the Air Force. It took me to another state. I lived in an apartment and I worked 12 hour shifts, so I would get four days off at a time sometimes. I didn't know anyone at first. I was so lonely. I did have a car though, but I hated eating alone or really going out alone. I would call my mom, but I had to watch my long distance bill. I was very lonely when I didn't work and was sad a lot. I did join a gym finally and went and worked out daily and that helped, but I came home to an empty house. I got a puppy and that did not fill the void either. This was the time, I finally found Jesus. I knew God and had a great love for Our Lady, but I had protestants bothering me if I knew Jesus and you know I didn't. I got to know Him. I would talk hours alone in my apartment to Him, getting to know Him. I would read the Bible to know more about Him especially after my protestant friend told me there is a difference in knowing about someone and knowing someone. I knew about Jesus before hand, but I did not know him personally. At times when I could not pray, I would just say His Name and feel better. I thank God now for that time of loneliness. I was discharged from the Air Force and moved back home for it was a medical discharge. When I tried to re-train into another career and go back to school, I choose Theology and went to the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Again, I was alone, but this time it was different. I never once felt alone. I knew Jesus was with me always. He was a friend that I had always with me. A friend that went everywhere I went. I went more to Adorations, but when I could not go, again, I spent hours praying alone in my apartment. These were years of spiritual growth for me.
So take that loneliness, and boy I know it can hurt, and use it to become closer to Jesus. As you come to know Jesus, you will know the Father more and soon the Holy Spirit. That is how it worked for me, but everyone is different in how God moves you and works on you. When I first got married, we were a one car family too and my dh had to take the car to work. I was left all day home alone in a very small military apartment. He was in the Navy. I did not feel loneliness there either. Once you find that Perfect Friend who is with you always, you will not feel loneliness. Do you need to talk to a human being? Yes, and I did. There is nothing wrong with praying for friends. I did not have many, but the few the Lord put in my life, were like precious jewels.
Another suggestion too is take some long walks around your neighborhood.
I will pray for you and your intentions.
I am currently a STHD and I go to the gym for about 2 hours a day. If I didn’t I would go insane! THe sauna really helps. I have never really thought that I was lonely but more “couped up”- but when I think about it maybe I am lonely. I don’t have many friends here. I have poor vision and so I can’t drive so that does kind of limit my outlets until my wife gets home.
I am a therapist and am on the lookout to pick up a few clients maybe one day a week but the process is slow going.
It can be hard. It gets even harder because you can begin to feel guilty about not being grateful that you CAN be at home. Ugh...
Some things that help, even with just one car?
Exercise. Make it a habit even if you hate it. Go for a walk, do an exercise DVD or even Wii Fit. Anything. Just do it daily.
Consider doing volunteer work you can do from home. Call the sick an shut in at your Parish just to say hello and to ask for any prayer intentions they have.
Get REALLY into some type of project you can do at home that benefits your family: Become a really good cook, learn to sew and make things, paint rooms of your home as needed, etc.
Take over stuff to free up your spouses time so that you can do fun things when they get home. Cut the grass, pay the bills, get all laundry and cleaning done.
Go on boards like this one for interaction.
Watch daily Mass on EWTN...make it part of your day.
The above can all be done even though you have just one car. It can be hard...harder than folks think, to be at home. I put on a lot of weight and am trying to get on track with #1 above (exercise daily!). When I DO exercise, I feel better about myself and our home.
I am not a SAHM; in fact, I'm a full-time college student who works two jobs, so any time I get alone at home is to be used in cleaning/laundry/collapsing. :p
That having been said, I suggest letting your friends know that you get lonely sometimes. My best friend and her husband recently had their first child. The best friend is now a SAHM, and as they have just the one car, she is usually sans transportation all day. Too, they live in a very small apartment, so I know she gets a bit stir-crazy now and again.
To be honest, it didn't occur to me that she might get lonely until she brought it up at one point. If anything, I hadn't been calling or inviting her out as much because I thought she'd be so busy with the kid that I didn't want to stress her out by making even MORE demands on her time, know what I mean?
Now I try to stop by every so often and get the both of them (best friend and kid) out of the apartment for a while during the day; we can hang out/do girl stuff/even just go out for coffee and talktalktalk. I can't do this as often as I'd like (see above), but it's good for both of us to be able to spend time together and for her to get out of the apartment.
I blog a lot, Facebook, hang out on forums like this one, and sometimes "treat myself" to a phone call with my mom or a friend. I know I'll be busier when the little guy is older and not able to spend so much time on the computer, though. I may adopt my mom's tack: she takes a long walk with the kids every day to the playground, and has met tons of people that way. She knows everyone on our street and all the neighborhood kids.