Selfless parenting

Even with our own insecurities, it’s important we parent children in a way we would want to have been parented ourselves, even if that didn’t happen.

When we get the parenting thing wrong, history repeats itself. Most of us will try to give our children the emotional stability they need, so that their children don’t go through the same hardships and experiences as we have, or our parents before us.

Parenting is a journey, that needs to be taken with the right attitude. Being a parent isn’t something we’re born knowing, it’s something that gradually comes, but being selfless, putting children first should be our first-priority, regardless of what’s gone on before us.

Parenting is a balancing act, but we must also consider ourselves too so that we are better equipped to manage all the demands that children place on us, as well as being able to deal with all of our responsibilities. Because children model their own lives through us, it’s important we get the parenting thing right.

Once we’re equipped to be better parents, children should go on to emulate those qualities in themselves. Children must come to understand that parents still need to attend to their own needs. As a parent that doesn’t make us selfish, it just makes us better more rounded parents, with a little more tolerance the other end.

Finding time for ourselves gives us emotional stability and more energy to go back in and be a parent. It also means we’ll have more patience and compassion to do the job. We should want to strive to be better people and better parents, through nourishing and valuing ourselves. Taking time out for ourselves, means we care enough to want to get the parenting thing right.

We all need time to ourselves. When we take too much time for ourselves that’s when we become selfish, but taking time out for ourselves once in a while, means we will have more chance of getting the parenting thing right.

12 Oct, 2015

4 thoughts on “Selfless parenting

  1. It would be difficult for me to parent the way I was parented, unless I also did it by absence too.

    I do think I was lucky as my parents left me to my own devices, due to a combination of them being pretty useless as parents and me being difficult to parent. At least with minimal input the mistakes I made were all mine to do and to learn from.

    For me it has been quite easy not to parent the way I was. My children come first and I try to instill in them all the values I have learned in my marriage, rather than as a child.

    We don’t often know how successful we will be of course, until our children have their own children. That’s usually how it works.

    1. It sounds like it was a combination of both and your mother didn’t know how to deal with you. That said, the easy option is not to do something when it becomes too difficult or we can’t cope.

      I think what you’re doing now and the attitude you have now to parenting is obviously going some way to make you a better parent. We can’t change our parents parenting us, but we can certainly make changes to do the parenting thing better.

      I believe and continue to believe the right foundations will always prevail in the longer term, regardless of what we see now with our children. As you have said and I believe it to be true, it’s only when our children have their own children, will those foundations come into play.

      All we can do in the meantime is continue to put out positive thoughts and keep those boundaries in place.

  2. I wasn’t allowed to take care of myself as a child, like most people do and received such negative reinforcements about doing so. It’s no wonder I have made the decisions I made to always put others first and have been the one who suffered from it.

    I kept trying to rescue the damsel in distress when they wanted to be saved, but not by me! I often chose the relationship over taking care of my own daughter, which haunts me every day! She deserved so much more than she got, but as much as I would love to, I don’t have the ability to change the past.

    My mistake, as so often the case, was to feel sorry for her mother. I’ve always been a sucker for a sob story and a pretty face. I should have taken custody of my daughter, considering I was already doing everything for her already, but I chose not to.

    In my delusional state, I thought she would be able to do the job if forced to, but time has proven me so wrong! I know I wouldn’t have lost my mind like I did, if I had been focused on my daughter. I was doing a great job at being a parent but it was her mother that I didn’t know how to deal with, considering all her issues that she wasn’t addressing!

    Now, with my daughter being 25, and so much damage already done, I have to learn how to be the father I always wanted to be and what she deserves. I also have to learn that it’s okay to take care of myself so that I will be better able to be there for her. She is a lovely young woman who should at least have the opportunity to get out into the world even with her CP.

    I had thought that moving out West would have been a good thing for her, but it may have been the worst thing, if she’s allowed to hide out at home. I can’t imagine she’s really happy living like that, but I also have to accept that she is an adult and can choose to live her life as she sees fit.

    Only time will tell!

    1. We can all look back Randy and pick fault in our parenting, but I’m just wondering what point there is to doing that.

      We make decisions at the time because we’re not always equipped to make the decisions we perhaps know we should make. That doesn’t make us a bad parent. You had your reasons, please don’t be too hard on yourself. I think if I had have been in the same position, I too would have made your decisions.

      You’ve said in other responses how you felt emotionally about your parents and how ill equipped you were to deal with your own life. You wanted what was best for your daughter because you couldn’t handle life. There’s nothing bad in that.

      What happened to your daughter after you made those decisions, isn’t down to you. You’re not responsible for the decisions your ex-partner made for your daughter, since she was the one who had custody. I hope you can see that.

      What matters now is that you’re trying your best for your daughter. That’s all that matters.

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