If you read articles about parenting (which I do) most commonly the conclusion is “no parent is perfect and you have to do what’s right for you and your family.” I don’t disagree it this. Of course no parent is perfect. Just like no human is perfect. So why do parents have to be told this again and again?
I will tell you why, because being a parent makes you feel guilty as fuck. And you want to know why that is? Because we all secretly blame the shit out of our parents for fucking us up.
They say parenting doesn’t come with an instruction manual, but it should come with a certificate that says “Hey new mom and dad, no matter how hard you try you are going to fuck up your kid in some way. Get used to it.”
The goal of parenting shouldn’t be to avoid the inevitable negative influence you will have on you kid. You don’t need to be forgiven for that. And you don’t need to be told it is okay. That should be inherent. Where we should be focusing our efforts is helping our kids feel comfortable communicating our shortcomings to us. Being a parent means you don’t have all the answers, and we need have the humility to get feedback on our style. In order to have a meaningful relationship with your kids well into their adult lives, the evolution has be in tandem. Kids can’t be the only ones expected to do all the growing and learning. Parents have to be strong enough to hear from their child how they may be harmfully impacting them them even if that wasn’t the intention. And assuming their complaints are reasonable, modifying the approach accordingly.
The Munch is still only 2 so I am not taking all her grievances that seriously. For instance “Mamma you don’t let me have cake for breakfast and that is mean” is not exactly something I am going to change. Especially because I already let her have cake for dinner. But I am trying to create an environment where we can talk about emotions in a real way and she knows I respect her opinion.t Even though that can be challenging when she tells me “ Mamma no, you don’t use your monster voice! Only I can use my monster voice!”