To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their child

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To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their child

Postby rains » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:01 am

[Editor's note: Article selected for Portal Publication]

Dear parents,

I have been, most of the time, a silent beneficiary of this forum.

It breaks my heart to see a few parents feeling like a failure when their children's t-score did not turn out to be what they had expected.

Didn't we say that our children are not defined by 3 digits? Neither are we, as parents, defined by 3 digits.

I have, many times in my parenting journey, felt like a failure as well. I was encouraged by this article below and would like to share with you:

A LOVE LETTER TO PARENTS

Dear moms and dads and caregivers out there:

I have said this before, but I am feeling the need to say it again — This is a love letter to you.

Time and time again while talking to parents, I hear about the intense guilt and fear that we feel in our parenting. We worry that we are doing something wrong, that we don’t love our kids enough, or in the right way, or in the same way that our friends love their kids. We worry that we did the wrong thing or said the wrong thing or that we have somehow missed the boat with our children.

We worry that our kids are eating too much or not eating enough. We worry that our kids aren’t getting enough sleep or reading enough books or learning the right things. We worry that our instincts are wrong or that we chose the wrong parenting book to follow or that we are pushing too hard or not pushing hard enough.

Every day I talk to parents who are doing their best and striving to do better. Parents who are reading and thinking and changing and growing along with their children. Parents who are contemplating their own practices and interactions with their children and challenging themselves to go deeper into this world of parenting than ever before.

And I think it is amazing.

And I think you are amazing.

And I think we are all human. Destined to be less than perfect much of the time. It is easy to find countless things to worry about and regret and struggle over. It is easy to find things that don’t make sense or that we did differently from others. It is easy to get lost in those things and lose sight of what is in our hearts. And when we do that, it is almost impossible to trust ourselves, our instincts and our own inner wisdom about what is right for our families. And that is when we get lost, feel alone and judged and scared and overwhelmed. It’s easy to go there.

But instead, let’s be gentle with ourselves and realize some simple truths:

1) There is no perfect parent. Parenting is not about perfection. It is about supporting another human along this path called life, with all its twists and turns and bumps. There is no perfect path, only amazing journeys. When we stop judging ourselves on how imperfect we are according to others, we can start truly being present in the path we are on.

2) We will mess up. If there is a parent out there that hasn’t lost their cool, said something they regret, done something they wished they hadn’t, I would like to meet them. Most of us will have moments, days, weeks that don’t look like we want them to look. The question is not whether or not that will happen, but what we do about it. How do we pull ourselves back together? How do we process it with our children? How do we get help when we need it?

3) It is never too late to change course. So often I hear parents say, “It’s too late, I did X when I should have done Y and now my child will never….” It’s never too late; that’s the beauty of being mindful and aware of our parenting. If we are aware, we can be flexible. If we are gentle with ourselves, we can understand that something isn’t working and try something new. If we are open, we can become aware of changes in our children, ourselves and our environment that call for a change of course. That’s life. It doesn’t mean we did something wrong.

Parenting is a journey. The path is rocky. We will probably trip and fall sometimes, and it’s never too late to change direction. When we realize that we are walking this path with our children, rather than for them, the journey becomes so much more enjoyable. When we spend our time looking back at all the things we stumbled on, we miss the connection to our child in the moment, we miss the scenery we are currently passing by and, maybe most importantly, we miss the road signs that are up ahead. Our child, our families, our hearts may be trying to tell us something and we just can’t hear it because we are too busy feeling like bad parents.

So, this is my love letter to all of you, all the moms and dads and caregivers who are thinking about parenting so deeply. Instead of focusing on guilt, let’s focus on what we are doing right. If we are leading with our hearts and doing what we feel is best for our child, we can and should trust our own path. If we are listening to our families and exploring our own patterns and becoming aware of our own mistakes, then we are leaps and bounds ahead of the game. If we are guiding our children with love and respect, they will feel it. Even if we mess up. Which we will. And if we treat our children like people in their own right, they will live up to the task. Even if they mess up. Which they will. And together, our messiness becomes life. A life worth living.

Love, Darci

rains
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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby Imami » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:07 am

:goodpost:

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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby Mawar » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:08 am

Thanks Darci! This is the main reason I visit KSP, to learn parenting skills from parents like you, and in the process, be a better person.

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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby Kind_Soul » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:16 am

Thanks Rains to start this thread... Indeed, factual message.

Parents, and even student reading this thread, we fail at times, we fall and get up, move on. But be sure we don't repeat the same mistakes, remembring the pain to fall. That's how our successful ancestors made it. To those born with a silver spoon, lucky you and count your blessings. To those who struggle to make a living, hang on.

Parents are not magicians to do miracles; we need to be stronger than our child/ren to make sure they are well guided, not do their role as a student. Don't blame them if they fail, or blame ourselves why we didn't make sure the child/ren do well. If they fail, we take up the failure with them and walk together. Build the bondage and enjoy the values of learning with the child/ren. We learn and be sure they learn with their children when they are parents in future...

All the best to all parents.... Enjoy the festives and spread the goodness to the less fortunate. Is not what this is how lives should be lived to the fullest?

Kind_Soul
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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby Happy Mama » Fri Nov 23, 2012 12:42 pm

:goodpost:
:thankyou: for sharing, Rains.

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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby linden2000 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 12:55 pm

Thanks, Rains! This morning I woke up feeling lousy about myself and some of my decisions made prior to psle. Felt much better after reading your post. Thanks!

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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby ponyo » Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:06 pm

Thanks rains for sharing this lovely love letter with all of us. It really came at a right time for a lot of us...

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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby HAPPYH » Sat Nov 24, 2012 11:30 am

rains wrote:[Editor's note: Article selected for Portal Publication]

Dear parents,

I have been, most of the time, a silent beneficiary of this forum.

It breaks my heart to see a few parents feeling like a failure when their children's t-score did not turn out to be what they had expected.

Didn't we say that our children are not defined by 3 digits? Neither are we, as parents, defined by 3 digits.

I have, many times in my parenting journey, felt like a failure as well. I was encouraged by this article below and would like to share with you:

A LOVE LETTER TO PARENTS

Dear moms and dads and caregivers out there:

I have said this before, but I am feeling the need to say it again — This is a love letter to you.

Time and time again while talking to parents, I hear about the intense guilt and fear that we feel in our parenting. We worry that we are doing something wrong, that we don’t love our kids enough, or in the right way, or in the same way that our friends love their kids. We worry that we did the wrong thing or said the wrong thing or that we have somehow missed the boat with our children.

We worry that our kids are eating too much or not eating enough. We worry that our kids aren’t getting enough sleep or reading enough books or learning the right things. We worry that our instincts are wrong or that we chose the wrong parenting book to follow or that we are pushing too hard or not pushing hard enough.

Every day I talk to parents who are doing their best and striving to do better. Parents who are reading and thinking and changing and growing along with their children. Parents who are contemplating their own practices and interactions with their children and challenging themselves to go deeper into this world of parenting than ever before.

And I think it is amazing.

And I think you are amazing.

And I think we are all human. Destined to be less than perfect much of the time. It is easy to find countless things to worry about and regret and struggle over. It is easy to find things that don’t make sense or that we did differently from others. It is easy to get lost in those things and lose sight of what is in our hearts. And when we do that, it is almost impossible to trust ourselves, our instincts and our own inner wisdom about what is right for our families. And that is when we get lost, feel alone and judged and scared and overwhelmed. It’s easy to go there.

But instead, let’s be gentle with ourselves and realize some simple truths:

1) There is no perfect parent. Parenting is not about perfection. It is about supporting another human along this path called life, with all its twists and turns and bumps. There is no perfect path, only amazing journeys. When we stop judging ourselves on how imperfect we are according to others, we can start truly being present in the path we are on.

2) We will mess up. If there is a parent out there that hasn’t lost their cool, said something they regret, done something they wished they hadn’t, I would like to meet them. Most of us will have moments, days, weeks that don’t look like we want them to look. The question is not whether or not that will happen, but what we do about it. How do we pull ourselves back together? How do we process it with our children? How do we get help when we need it?

3) It is never too late to change course. So often I hear parents say, “It’s too late, I did X when I should have done Y and now my child will never….” It’s never too late; that’s the beauty of being mindful and aware of our parenting. If we are aware, we can be flexible. If we are gentle with ourselves, we can understand that something isn’t working and try something new. If we are open, we can become aware of changes in our children, ourselves and our environment that call for a change of course. That’s life. It doesn’t mean we did something wrong.

Parenting is a journey. The path is rocky. We will probably trip and fall sometimes, and it’s never too late to change direction. When we realize that we are walking this path with our children, rather than for them, the journey becomes so much more enjoyable. When we spend our time looking back at all the things we stumbled on, we miss the connection to our child in the moment, we miss the scenery we are currently passing by and, maybe most importantly, we miss the road signs that are up ahead. Our child, our families, our hearts may be trying to tell us something and we just can’t hear it because we are too busy feeling like bad parents.

So, this is my love letter to all of you, all the moms and dads and caregivers who are thinking about parenting so deeply. Instead of focusing on guilt, let’s focus on what we are doing right. If we are leading with our hearts and doing what we feel is best for our child, we can and should trust our own path. If we are listening to our families and exploring our own patterns and becoming aware of our own mistakes, then we are leaps and bounds ahead of the game. If we are guiding our children with love and respect, they will feel it. Even if we mess up. Which we will. And if we treat our children like people in their own right, they will live up to the task. Even if they mess up. Which they will. And together, our messiness becomes life. A life worth living.

Love, Darci


:goodpost:

HAPPYH
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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby cfan » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:57 pm

As long as you have done your best, so be it.

Don't have to be bothered with what other people say/do, they are not you!!!

Parents - Don't be too hard on yourself
Kids - We are learning, Life is a journey meant to have ups and downs, if there is no down we will never appreciate the ups

Let's all work hard together to create a better future for you and for me

Peace to all
*Strictly my own personal point of view*

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Re: To Mothers and Fathers who feel they have failed their c

Postby janet88 » Wed Nov 28, 2012 3:26 pm

As parents, we want our kids to use the shortest way to get good education and reach the peak...unfortunately it doesn't always work that way.

When my son's PSLE results were released, I felt I had failed as a mother especially because I am also a SAHP. Like all the other kids who had worked so hard, I wished he could do well enough to get into SJI or St Andrew's for example...but it was not to be.

Going to open house at other sec schools felt terrible...not bcos the schools were terrible, but they were just not what we expected. I had to pull myself together...remind my son and also myself that things do not always turn out the way we expect. Maybe this is a blessing in disguise. Maybe he could be a big fish in this pond. He has always been a small fish in a big pond all these years.


Thanks RAINS for the post. :salute:

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