It seems that Parenting has become like that of a competitive sport. All children must excel at sports, academics and music. They must be in many and varied extra curricular activities – be beautifully dressed – socially responsible. As a Parent, you must be organized, involved, enthusiastic and gregarious. If you are a working mother, your job should be great, you should look great and you should be as involved as the Stay at Homes. The Stay at H0mes, must be dressed impeccably at all times, exercise, have an immaculate house, be incredibly involved and under the guise you will be going back to work. If you are not going back to work – then you must appease the masses by doing more volunteer work…………..
Our children are being brought up in a society where there is a sense of entitlement – that baffles me. It seems every child NEEDS a cell/iPod/iPad/DS etc. etc. They must be in various different programs. They must get straight A’s. They must have the BEST parties, the BEST presents, The Best, the best…the best. Yet, there doesn’t seem to be a way for them to work for it. Your child must walk early, talk early. Your child must be the lead in the play. Your child must be the best dancer/skater/hockey player….athelete. Your child must be good looking and well dressed at all times. Your child must have every gadget/fad/toy/program etc. as the rest of their friends…….without question.
As a mother of 2, I see this a lot. I am guilty of it to. I know healthy parents who have a brutal time trying to keep up with the Jones’. So how in the Hell are we supposed to compete?
Reading other Blogs about Painie Parenting – I know I am not alone. We feel we have failed our children by being us. I know that I will have truly failed them – if I don’t change my perspective. I struggle – but have to believe that we as Painie Parents offer the following.
We are all struggling as parents. With my dysfunctional family background I was already heading into parenting with a deficit. This made it more of a challenge. The pain has given me time for reflection. To really see my kids. To maybe be more aware of what I say and do because I am sick. I want them to know, everyday, how much they mean to me.
Healthy parents take their lives for granted. I have seen some, not all, but some, parents take their kids for granted. They don’t know how life can shift on a dime and leave you in completely different circumstances. I listen to people talk about how tired, stressed and bogged down they are. Not knowing how truly lucky they really are.
Childhood is not something you get back – there are no “do overs”. Maybe this pain forced me to slow down. To truly appreciate my little poopers. To see their inner core. To listen to their stories. To snuggle them a little closer.
We are not deficient parents. We are not less than Healthy parents. We have been given an extra challenge and maybe that isn’t so bad? Maybe we haven’t failed them, but provided clear and profound life lessons. Ones that will carry them through their lives; making them better people. Sometimes a door is shut and a window opens.
It isn’t easy for us; but who said being a parent is?