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  1. #21
    harvs's Avatar
    harvs is offline Winner 2014 - Spirit of BubHub Award
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    I don't really have a village.

    I didn't join a mother's group because of the circumstances of my life at the time - it was mortifying and I didn't feel like I could unload on strangers so couldn't see the point if it wasn't going to be a transparent, genuine friendship.

    I have no family in Australia. My husband ended up leaving me, although he generally steps up quite nicely for DS (but will only very rarely do any extra than he has committed to).

    I live in the country and the only people I know are at least 20 years older than me. They will help me out if I ask but I don't really ask them very much. I think I have shame about not being on top of things and I don't want to overstay my welcome.

    I'm feeling this very keenly tonight. I am sick again, and had the day off work. Tonight DS is clearly coming down with what I have, so I am expecting that I will have a rough night. I can't really miss another day tomorrow, unless he goes downhill or gets sent home from cc. I don't even really have anyone reliable on my emergency contacts list.

    But...I muddle along. I haven't topped myself yet :-) I find I just have to do what I can when I can. My DS is happy and health and well-adjusted. So to answer your question, I don't think you *need* a village, but given the choice, I would most definitely take one.

    Hope your day picked up Miss Betty x

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  3. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rose&Aurelia View Post
    You are an inspiration to me. We are moving to Canberra next year away from 'our village' and your story has such truths to it.
    Nawww. Stop it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BettyV View Post
    @HopefulK we've lived here for just over a year and I think that's definitely a factor.

    Thanks for all your replies. It's comforting to hear that I'm not the only one who feels like raising a child takes the support of a community. Reading the replies has made me realise maybe my issue isn't just the lack of a village but also the fact that I'm not good at calling on the potential "village" that I do have. I do have friends from church and we catch up with our mother's group friends at least once a week. I really appreciate their friendship and company but when I find myself needing help, whether that be someone to watch dd for an hour while I get some sleep or to pick up some baby neurofen, I don't feel comfortable reaching out. I think some of that is how long we've known each other, and some is that I'd feel bad exposing them to my sick baby's germs, but I think there's also an element of perceived social expectation. I feel like in western society there is such a focus on the individual and individual achievement that "we" expect people to be able to do it all themselves. Does that make sense to anyone? Maybe I'm just babbling? I just feel like the loss of a natural village and the shift to an individual centric rather than community centric society has placed a larger burden on parents. 😞 It's days like this I really wish I lived near my mum.

    Maybe the question I should be asking is what can I do to build a village for myself and to help ensure my friends have a village too?

    On a side note, @Rose&Aurelia I live in Canberra and would be happy to be part of your village when you move.
    I live in canberra also and would like to put my hand up to help in your village.

    I have a 13 month old ds and really struggle. I have mil and my mum but they are both unreliable and so caught up within themselves i feel guilty asking.

    Sent from my GT-I9507 using The Bub Hub mobile app

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  6. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by #Mama View Post
    We moved to where we live now when I was 36 weeks pregnant and we didn't know a soul here, which made me panic. The village is so important!
    We're still building our village but it's looking pretty good so far. Just this morning in went to a regular catch up with friends. There's 8 of us. Snacks were brought, and coffees and babies were being passed around, older kids were running and playing together, if a baby cried then whoever was closest simply picked them up. I sat back and looked around and my heart sang. I felt like I actually had a bit of a village and it was amazing.
    I have a friend here who will grab me something from the supermarket if needed, run around medicine, invite us for dinner if I haven't managed to organise something and it goes both ways. We'll both be moving house in the next few months and will be helping each other out.

    We're still building it, but I'm so happy with where we're at. I think true "village" status comes when you stop asking things, if that makes sense. I have that with my best friend. She just assumes they're staying with us when they visit. Of course they are. We wouldn't have it any other way. And we just assume we're staying with them, because they wouldn't have it any other way! Come into my house. Plop your baby down to play with mine and make yourself a coffee while I cook dinner. You know where the cups are. There's no clean teaspoons so rinse one out of the dishwasher. Clear off a chair and sit down. Bam. Village.

    I do wish my best friend was closer, and my parents but that's what comes with our life and DHs work!
    This village sounds amazing

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    Quote Originally Posted by Freyamum View Post
    Wow so how did you do that?
    Luck? Ha ha. Seriously I. Terrible at meeting people and making friends!
    I joined my local bw group and that got me in touch with other like minded mums, who have similar values/approaches to life and their kids. Much more so than my MCHN based mums group! I imagine going to an ABA chat and play or similar would do the same. And by chance, I just happen to live very close to one of the girls and we became "just knock on the door anytime" kind of friends

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  9. #26
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    TheGooch is offline Winner 2014 - Newbie of the Year
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    Quote Originally Posted by A-Squared View Post
    It's not required but it makest it a sh.!t load easier!.
    Yup this.

    I've made my own village since it has become abundantly clear that any idea of a traditional village in our families is never going to happen.

    DF
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    That's my village

  10. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sariele View Post
    I've been desperately lamenting my lack of a "village" since DS was born, but especially from when he was 3 months old and we moved to England. I have no family here, and no friends despite making an effort. The closest thing I have to a friend is my cleaner who comes once a week and is about to go off and have another baby, and a lady 20 years my senior who I do a half-hour run with one evening a week. No one I can call on when I need help, no one who can mind DS for an hour while I go to an appt, get my hair cut, get some non-pram-encumbered exercise, etc.

    I hate it.

    DS also has social and communication delays, and I reckon that could have a lot to do with the fact that he only has me during the week, day in day out, and I'm rubbish at meaningful interactions with babies. We've just started at a toddler group, but we went to one session then he got sick, of course, so we had to miss the following week as he was still very snotty and coughing. But no one seems very interested in socialising beyond a tiny bit of chit-chat, and even if I did strike up one or two friendships, it's not the same as having your own family and lifelong friends nearby.

    This is me. I totally get every word you've said.
    I'm currently at loggerheads with DH about moving back home to Ireland.
    My kids are missing out on so much being away from extended family.
    Cousins, Grannies, sleep overs, parties and just some one other than their parents to learn from.
    I remember spending so much time with my granny and then my youngest aunty as I grew up. Anyone other than my mother who would just be as a mammy is, watching your every move.
    I don't want that for my kids.
    It would be another story if we didn't have such a rich family life back home, but we do and every day away is a day wasted in my eyes.
    the grannies are only getting older. Nobody is coming out this far to visit us.
    Unfortunately I've been told I'd have to drag DH back kicking and screaming, so my heart is torn at the minute.

    So yep, I do think it takes a village to raise a child, and not by helping to feed and cloth the child or the day to day tasks. More so to be good adult role models for children or to lend an ear to a teenager who can't bear to talk to their parents but would tell an uncle or aunt anything.
    Things like that, without going on about it too much because I feel very strongly about it.

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  12. #28
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    rainbow road is offline look at the stars, look how they shine for you
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    It definitely does. I'm so lucky to have family close by and a close bunch of friends who loves DS like their own (and vice versa).

    My MIL has DS one day a week and my mum has in one day a week. My MIL is especially amazing. Just last night I needed paper to print stuff for a house application and DP was out and DS asleep, so she drove over some paper for me!

    We moved back to where we grew up for the village - as much as we loved our old area, we know nothing compares to being close to your village.

    I would really struggle without them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phony View Post
    This is me. I totally get every word you've said.
    I'm currently at loggerheads with DH about moving back home to Ireland.
    My kids are missing out on so much being away from extended family.
    Cousins, Grannies, sleep overs, parties and just some one other than their parents to learn from.
    Yes yes YES. I have my cousin in Perth who is always wanting to know when I'm coming back, saying if we were there I could have coffee with her while our kids played, I have my mum who misses her grandson sorely (she's only seen him for one week as a newborn, one week as a 3 month old, and a few weeks as a 9/10 month old over Christmas and New Year), very old friends who I saw less than once a year even when I was in Aus, but I know they are always there for me and would want to know my son, etc. My DH on the other hand only ever had his parents and brother growing up. They moved around a lot, living in different countries and such, and he works in the same industry as his dad so that's what our life could end up being like. He loves it, but I just want stability and familiarity and my "village". There are less than zero job opportunities for him back home right now though, so we don't even have the option of moving back for possibly a few years. Not to mention the fact that he'd quite happily settle here (he was born in England and lived here on and off til he was 12), which makes me feel guilty for wanting to go back to Aus so badly.
    @Phony if you ever want to vent to me about what an awfully frustrating situation it is, feel free to PM me.

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    I'm very very lucky and do have a village, my mum, sister and 2 SIL all live within a 5 km radius

    My mum picks DS up from pre school 2 days a week and comes here every Saturday when I work, my SIL and I take turns taking the kids to little kickers or mainly music so the other can get stuff done, I've never had a babysitting problem and when one of us is sick/busy we often cook for the other family, have regular dinners and outings

    I have 3 school aged nieces and my mum, SIL and myself will usually have them most days over the school Holidays so their parents can work ,we all attend each other's kids sporting/school functions , one of us can always pick up the others kids from pre school/school if someone is sick or stuck at work , my sister just had another baby so I've been making my nieces school lunches and my mum takes her to school every day

    I love watching the bond DS has with my mum and his aunties and sees his cousins a few times a week which as an only child I'm very grateful for , I would be lost without my village and know how lucky I am

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