You may have noticed a general theme among the answers so far: DELEGATE. I believe these answers above are suggesting you delegate the wrong burdons. You have explicitly stated that the love you have for your kids is where you draw your strength from, so I believe it seems logical that any efforts made to distance you from your kids, for any more than having the kids sleep over at friends houses, will reduce the stress you feel pressured by, but will also remove the source of your strength. This is not a solution, and I am deeply disappointed that this has become the standardised reactionary measure for the Australian Government in cases where parents are overburdened.
So what do I suggest? Advertise! Put out a call for help from the people in your community, and tell the people you’re asking for help from to keep spreading the word to people they know that can do something, ANYTHING, to help you raise your kids. The most common response is in the form of food, so you won’t need to cook much any more. Some people will offer to clean if you’re willing to offer them food (like the food you might receive from other people), drink, and a comfortable place to rest while on break between trimming the hedge and scrubbing the toilet. Other people may offer to take you and your kids to do something fun with them and their kids, like waterslides and icecream. You may need to learn how to make a nice tasting home-made lemonade, and the microwave will get a workout, but life will get easier, without being separated from those you love most.
We live in a country with an ageing population that are desperate to feel needed and valuable. Older people are highly experienced at interpersonal skills, most have successfully raised kids into adults, and if they’ve been made redundant recently they could jump at the chance to interact with other people, like kids, even if there is no financial gain offered. From house-sitting to walks around the local park, older people are the world’s best babysitters and excellent conversationalists. You’d be hard pressed to find one that doesn’t have an amazing story to tell someone like you, that just wants to sit back, relax, and listen to a story while their kids play in the background. And they love a good lemonade, as long as its not too cold.
Calling on your husband to do all these tasks would be torture for him. To a degree you can rely on him to do a little more when you’re having a hard time, but I’d be willing to bet if given a choice, he’d rather help you look for people in the community that can help your family. He could start by distributing flyers around to people where he works.
If you’re worried about giving people tasks that would require putting a lot of trust in people you don’t know, don’t give them those tasks. Get to know them first, build relationships, let them prove their strength of character. If you find it hard to learn so many peoples’ names and character in such a short period of time, write things down in a ledger with pros and cons for each person.
If your husband knows anything about human resources (HR) management, or has a colleague that does, ask for evaluation forms and the like, and ask your husband to do the character assessments. Everyone that is willing to volunteer help is valuable, so don’t turn anyone away, even the worst criminal you can imagine. They may be looking for a way to redeem themselves. Just be careful which jobs you give to whom. And if a person consistently demonstrates strength of character, offer to be a referee or write a formal reference that could help them find work. The letter you write could save their life! When it comes to writing references, the ledger I mentioned will come in handy.
What you want for yourself, give to another!! If you’re seeking help, offer to help others. If you’re seeking kindness from others, be kind. If you’re seeking relief from pain, become a pain reliever for others. BE THE CHANGE YOU WISH TO SEE IN THE WORLD!!