It will be a year next week that my son was born. I have kept these feelings inside for far too long. A year that I have been living in this body that I now call my own. My belly button still looks the same, saggy and loose. I still have “love” handles and flub around my waist. It still hurts too look at myself naked but at least I can hide it with clothes. I still know what lies underneath but no one else does. My little secret. What I cannot hide is my face. Since I have been breastfeeding, I have broken out in horrible cystic acne all over my face. Painful lumps under my skin. Some the size of quarters. I’ve been to the dermatologist and I have had creams and some shots but nothing seems to work. And the things that would work I cannot have because I still breastfeed. But I REFUSE to give up breastfeeding just because I have an ugly face. My son loves it too much to stop, and I just can’t cut him off, not until I know he’s ready. I cry every time I shower and wash my face. I cry when I’m naked because I realize that this isn’t a dream and I am awake and this IS my new body. I will NEVER have my old body back. I cry when I look in the mirror at my face. My face is hiding behind pustules and cysts. It hurts to make facial expressions, it hurts to talk, it hurts to see. It just hurts, and no one seems to understand my hurt. I have reached out to my “friends” but none of them seem to have body issues or face issues that I have..or at least they do an amazing job hiding it. I’m a single mom. This is suppose to be the best time of my life yet it hurts the most. I don’t even want my picture taken with my baby because I feel my face is so ugly. And stress doesn’t help it.My son’s father is the ultimate LOSER. Goes weeks without seeing his child, doesn’t offer a dime and randomly calls once a month to see him. Unemployed. Criminal history. Could possibly have a 2 1/2 year old daughter. I don’t want his money. I don’t want his help as a parent; I don’t want anything from him. I just want him to go away. I want him to disappear. He offers nothing good to my son. He’s just heartbreak waiting to happen for my son as he get older. A disappointment time bomb ticking away. I HATE the fact that he’s “around”–if you can even call it that..WHY? WHY stick around?? Just GO AWAY. He’s like the pustules on my face that won’t leave. I’m at my wits end my my face, my body, and my EX. I feel so alone. I love my son with all heart but my body/face issues have really taken a toll on me and I’m afraid he will soon feel my sadness too.
I more depressed now than I have ever felt in a long time.
I don’t know what to do…
– “From Hot to Not“
22 thoughts on “Needing Guidance- Finally reaching out (Anonymous)”
I’m so sorry hun. You sure have a lot of difficult things going on at once. I can’t see your face or your belly, but I can feel your heart. You are a good person on the inside. And you are doing a great job raising your boy dispite his father doing a less than stellar job.
For the acne, I don’t know what you’ve tried. But one natural method I’ve been using is a mixture of 3 parts castor oil, 1 part extra virgin olive oil. And you can add a few drops of Tea tree oil if you can find some.
Rub it onto your dry face, then get a hot washcloth and lay it on your face to steam out your pores for a minute. Then rinse the cloth and wipe all the remaining oil off your face.
It seems weird to wash your face with oil but it’s been working for me. It takes out the bad dirt and oils and replaces it with good oil. Store bought cleansers strip the oil so your face just produces EVEN MORE of it.
Dispite how terrible you feel you look, pleeease take pictures with your child. I’ve had days where I was like “don’t get me in the shot” and they do anyways. And you look back and realize, if it weren’t for those days you’d hardly have any pics of you together. And to me that’s more important than however crappy I look. I would regret having no pics with my boy.
Keep your chin up mama.
2 Comments here first go and get medical help for your Depression like symptoms, secondly, go seek legal advice to block this “loser” as you call him, only then will things improve. How do I as a man know these things, well my sister suffered with PND (Post Natal Depression), or post partum disorder, secondly,my friends daughter was in the same “boat” in regards to a “loser”. Be strong chin up Kiddo, you can do this!..Blessings, Steve
Breast feeding is a wonderful gift that you have given your son for an entire year. If you want/need to quit now to address your acne I don’t think that you should feel guilty or ashamed. I know it’s hard to do, but it may be helpful to try to step back and look at the situation carefully. Ask yourself honestly which is the more powerful emotion: the contentment your son gets from the breast or your misery dealing with a pretty severe case of cystic acne. It also may be worthwhile to consider whether your discontent with your appearance (and consequent depression) might also affect your son. Kids have a pretty good knack of picking up on mom’s emotions. Just some food for thought. Anyway, I wish you well. It sounds like you are hanging in there with a tough set of circumstances. Stay strong mama!
I just want you to know that you aren’t alone. Every mother has flaws, and we can all relate. You are beautiful, you have to tell yourself that. Take a day or two for yourself and try doing something you love. You can always take a break breastfeeding and change him to formula and in the mean time pump so you are still producing milk, if you want to go on perscription meds. Take a big deep breath and start doing something that makes you happy and make it into your daily routine. Maybe you can paint or go on a walk with your son. Your going to be okay and your an amazing woman you cant forget how important you are, your son adores you.
I too had a horrible time with acne and I found some natural products that helped so much.
I took the herb milk thistle, you’ll have to research it to make sure you can take it while breastfeeding.
And I used baking soda to wash my face, then honey as a mask, then coconut oil as a lotion. My face cleared up in about 2 weeks. Might not work for you as all skin is different but worth a try.
You’re amazing for doing so much for your child, please reach out to someone about your depression.
I have to admit that your story has really touched me. I, like you, have so many issues with my body and self esteem that if the world knew would not able to handle.
As women we are use to giving up so much, we are tough to sacrifice and sacrifice. we are told that to be a “GOOD” mother we must put our selves second and children first.
I have 3 kids. And since my first birth my body has never been the same. There are places where skin is sagging. Literally folding down and making a separate muscle. handing loose skin all over the place.
I have to say dont feel alone, dont put yourself down. Crap like this happens everyday. Sure the man is a dead beat but there is no going back, you are just going to have to deal with it. Dont let that put you down. Let it inspired you to look better to feel better to do more for yourself so that one day soon you could show that loser that you a re this wonderful woman that he could no have.
Your weight is something that could be fixed. With a little commitment you could go back to being the confident woman you once were. learn to love your new mommy body. remember that you are beautiful. When it comes to breastfeeding here is a little something I wrote about something that I when through. , i hope you find it helpfull, see intraininwheels.blogspot.com
May god bless you and keep fighting!
Oh hun! First thing is first! HUGS!!!! I am so happy you reached out and shared your story with us! My first question.. have you talked to your doc about possible baby blues or depression? I suffered from PPD and it took a good 5 months before I realized things were off…
Secondly… I am giving you a standing ovation on your commitment to your child and to breast feeding! It sure does sound like you are going through hell ! I have no perfect solution or amazing words of advice… I just want to send you some strong hugs and give you my email address in case you want to talk!!
Please email me at anytime!! Sometimes its just easier to talk to someone you dont know as opposed to the ppl closest to you!
My son is a year old next week too. I haven’t had acne as difficult as yours sounds but I too have really suffered in regards to my skin during pregnancy and breastfeeding. My doctor says that its hormonal and like you I won’t give it up just because of my skin. All I can do is offer you love and acceptance because I know how hard it is. Find your beauty in your child and make sure that you DO have photos taken with him – he loves you unconditionally and will want the memories captured no matter what you look like.
PS I have found that using sorbolene cream instead of soap to wash with (and as a moisturiser) has really helped my skin. Takes a bit of getting used to but it’s very gentle and helps your skin to have a normal oil balance.
I know some people poo-poo the idea of counseling, but I think that maybe talking to a professional would do wonders to you. It doesn’t mean you’re sick when you see a counselor, it means that you’re HUMAN. You’d be surprised if you knew how many people in the world deal with sadness and are too afraid to reach out. Just talking to someone once a week does such amazing wonders! Have you talked to someone close to you such as a friend or your mother? Just reaching out to one person and telling them how you feel, they could help you dial the number to get on the road to talking to a counselor. I wish you every drop of happiness in the world!
And I’m proud of you for not giving up on breastfeeding. You know, after I stopped breastfeeding, for about five months, I had problems with acne–it’s the hormonal fluctuations. Usually I’d just use water on my face and that’d be more than enough. But I had to use Clearasil acne face wipes. Things have evened out tremendously since then and I only use the wipes a few times a week instead of daily. <3
Pregnancy made my skin look like I’m a teenager going through puberty. And even now (almost 2 years postpartum) my skin’s pretty terrible…I have those under the skin pimples that don’t EVER go away…grrr. Them damn hormones! I barely ever had pimples when I was a teenager. Now I have full blown acne. Sorry, running off at the mouth. But, keep your head up hun and try to focus on what’s good in your life, before you know it…you WILL accept yourself and the stress will diminish and your acne will probably clear up. Stress REALLLLLLY triggers my breakouts. Oh and P.S. your body’s awesome!!!
I think this post ( https://theshapeofamother.com/blog/when-happily-ever-after-comes-crashing-down-anonymous/ ) says it all in the photos at the bottom. The woman is stunning two years after her baby- she had a very ‘typical mom’ belly in the one year post partum photo. Very different at two years!
I’m five months PP and already wishing sometimes to stop BFing so that I can lose more weight- lets face it, it’s hugely demanding, it would be lovely to be able to pass a bottle to someone else and say, ‘You feed him, I’m going for a run,’ but like yours, my son loves it. He smiles and giggles and flings his face at my breast with glee when it’s time for nursing. He stops to break off, gaze up at me and smile bashfully when I look at him, burying his face in my chest again.
I try to soak in his scent, and his smallness, and his wonderfulness- because it won’t last. And really, do we have time for relationships right now? My boyfriend (my son’s father) and I barely see each other. We are just too busy.
If your skin problems are due to nursing- that will end, and probably long before you are on the market for real. And while many women argue, research I’ve see shows women tend to hold on to a bit of extra weight while breastfeeding, but fortunately many seem to drop it when their child weans (more time for ourselves, I assume).
I wish I had magic words for you : ( if I find them, I’ll definitely come let you know!
I am so sorry that you are going through this. It is hard to deal with all of the standard issues of post pregnancy and yours are incredibly complicated by the involvement of your face. I am so sorry. It sounds like until you finish nursing your options are limited… kudos to you for sticking with it through this trying time. I weaned my first son at 15 months and it was hard to decide to do but easy when it was actually done. I seemed to think that nursing was “our” bond but I realized when I weaned that we were just as tied together without it. There was this irrational fear that he wouldn’t need me when he wasn’t nursing but that was soooo not the case. In the mean time, just know that when your son looks at you all he sees is his mothers beautiful face and the love she has for him. Good luck.
You said that you refuse to stop breastfeeding, and I certainly understand that attachment. I breastfed both of my babies for over a year each, and it was very special for all of us. However, I also remember a period of several years during adolescence when my face broke out like yours, and I felt just as you describe. I tried all kinds of prescription and over the counter meds and nothing helped until finally I discovered Accutane. It’s prescription only and super-powerful. You absolutely should not get pregnant while taking it, and I’m pretty sure you shouldn’t nurse while taking it either. But, it did miracles for my skin. Perhaps stopping nursing would be worth the sacrifice to be able to get on the meds that would clear up your skin. NOT because you have an “ugly” face, but because the acne is taking an extreme emotional toll. Your decision, but worth reconsidering. Good luck!
It could be depressiom and stress that happened to me as well before I was even pregnant, I guess a horomonal imbalance, once you stop breastfeeding if it doesn’t go away you can go on meds for depression or even birth control may help, b/c stress alone does a toll on your body, mine has always gone away whether it be medication in the past or getting away from the situation your in somehow, I had a few asshole exboyfriends that I could tell when I was unhappy-miserable I would break out bad, now I am with my husband he is amazing and I never have that issue anymore, and have been off any depresion meds for the past 2 years. I remember going to the dermatologist and I was complaing I couldn’t wear a bathing suit because I would break out on my chest and back too and she said I know the feeling..she was a lil overweight, so I guess we aren’t the only ones with these issues, I had a great body but had acne now I have 20 lbs pp weight and have pretty clear skin lol. Just try to see the good and keep your head up , it will get better, Just getting this out must help, instead of keeping it inside. YOUR NOT ALONE = )
Oh, honey! I wish I could give you a great big hug. Find someone to talk with…please. Consider speaking to your doctor about your feelings–don’t hold back, how you are feeling affects you and your baby.
Way to go breastfeeding!
There is someone that can help–Jesus Christ. Give your sorrow to him and He will take care of you.
I was so saddened to read this – as a mature mum I can understand your body issues – I still have them and my babies have grown and lead their own lives. Please go back to your doctor and see what help is available. Your face will gradually return to normal once your body returns to normal – there must be so many hormones floating round doing all sorts of ‘teenage’ things to your body. Secondly seek some counselling – you need someone to facilitate your thinking into a strategy for living under the pressure that you do. Try not to think beyond each day for now – do something nice with your son each day, eat fresh healthy food and take exercise – walking is great and something you can do together with him, or with another mum and her child so you have someone adult to chat to. Find out about your legal position with your child’s father. I am sure once your emotional life is more stable you will feel better about yourself and can concentrate on you and your son. The good people don’t judge on spots on faces, they judge on what’s in someone’s heart – let that be seen in your eyes and you will make new friends which will boost your confidence. Good luck and keep us posted on your success.
its really hard to find the right words but my heart reached out to you when i read your post so i will try…honey, i’m sure you are beautiful. the way you write about your son proves that. i know how hard it is to look in the mirror after birth and see a different person. its scary. coupled with the physical and emotional strain of having a child, it can be overwhelming. i went through PPD, and while i’m not suggesting you are too, i understand feeling overwhelmed and scared and i do think that finding a professional to talk to about everything might help. i will be thinking about you and hoping you find what you need and get some help to get back to yourself. i’m sending you lots of internet love :)
hey, been meaning to comment on your story since i read, but its hard when im always holding an infant, lol. i can relate to some parts of your life, at times i could have easily given in to the negativity and just have let it swallow me forever, but i know what type of person i am, or can be at times, and that person is much better off being happy and looking on the bright side. your choice to breastfeed your son even though your looks may suffer is immensely selfless and in my mind how a mother should be. if nothing else, with all the crap you have to go through with the father and whatever else, just remember that you are a fantastic mom. i don’t know if this comforts you, but it does me, when i have my ‘dark’ moments. i wish you would show pictures because i bet you are more beautiful than you know. i hope you can pull through this and take charge like the strong woman you must be just for being a single mom, wow, its hard stuff
I’m sorry to hear you are feeling so depressed. But you should be very proud that even though you feel so bad you havent giving up breastfeeding… you are an amazing mother! Please look for help, maybe counceling so they can help you more and that way you can be the best mom for your little one…even better than you are now! I will be praying for you and let us know how you are doing…
Just a quick note to say that there are meds for depression and more which are totally OK for breastfeeding – NO need to stop. Dr. Hale is the man with the info in this department and La Leche League can help as well.
…Getting use to a new aby, a new body and a new face withing such a short period of time is hard for anybody, even someone that has the father in their life, or their babies life. It is HARD. period…. You are not weird or weak or different for feeling this way. Actaully, it seemed like I was the only one out of all my friends who would admit that I was having a hard time, that I didn’t really like my body, and didn’t just love love love being a mom. Everyone else seemed like, wow, it was wonderful great all the time. So jsut knw, one mommy to another mommy, it is sooo freaking hard! but beautiful/
I had really bad skin after the baby, the ony thing that cleared it up was eating better. When you rae caring for a child all alone , and not taking care of yourself you might be trying to skip meas or just eat whatever. But you realy do need to eat lots of fruits and veggies to support breastfeeding and to heal your skin. I started seeing a huge difference in about two weeks of eating healthy protiens and veggies six times a day and actualy making the time for myself to eat. I think diet is the major cause of most skin related disorders.
Our stories are so much alike it’s weird!! Except my daughter is 4 weeks old, but same flaky criminal father, and itchy, painful, peeling, sometimes weepy cystic acne. I’ve used Proactiv, facials, $100 creams, and still nothing. Depression is trying to creep in, and I think my only objective is stopping breastfeeding cold turkey and staying birth control. Motherhood….. :/