While you can ask parents around you about their parenthood experiences, you’ll seldom hear the raw truth. You won’t hear things like — I don’t know if I’d do it again. Or how about — my life has never been the same and I’m depressed. Or how about — it caused my divorce. You’ll mostly hear It’s hard but oh my god, it’s worth it.
No parent wants to open up for the fear they’ll be called a bad parent — Jeez, what will my friends think of me?
Want to hear the truth? Look at forums where parents anonymously talk about their experiences. Reddit has those communities.
r/beyondthebump - excellent discussions about caring for kids after pregnancy.
r/oneanddone/ - A community of parents who choose to have one child. It’s great for understanding the challenges of having multiple kids.
r/regretfulparents - You’ll never hear these stories told face to face but you’ll be surprised by how many parents find themselves in a very dark place.
r/childfree - A community of folks who specifically choose not to have kids.
These communities have helped me navigate my own mental challenges after having a newborn. It’s a good place to connect with people who also share your struggles. Seeing that some folks have it far worse than me gives me gratitude for the good things that I already have.