There is nothing more blissful to a parent’s ears than that of silence (but ONLY when a child is meant to be sleeping, silence while a child is awake can mean certain doom for whatever the child knows they should not be doing!!). Silence; that rare, beautiful lack of sound, that cushions your ears with love and goes well with a HOT cup of tea. Nothing beats the satisfaction you feel when you finally manage to get your child to sleep or successfully change their nappy without getting weed on. It’s an overwhelming experience being a parent but you learn to adapt and adopt certain routines and learn your own tricks of the trade. So why are some of us made to feel like we are doing a bad job?
Everyone has their own parenting style and as long as your child is looked after and loved, who can complain, right? But this is society we are talking about and we all love a good moan. I saw the other day the whole uproar about David Beckham letting his four-year old daughter still have a dummy/pacifier. I couldn’t help but laugh as I have been trying to slowly wean our son off his before his second birthday as I thought he was getting a bit old for one and here the famous Beckham was still using one with his daughter at four years of age! I read some really hateful and nasty comments about how Beckham was being a bad parent and how his daughter will struggle with speech etc. I couldn’t believe that someone as famous as him was getting grief for how he was bringing up his daughter. It’s ridiculous. I am pretty sure he knows what he is doing and doesn’t need any negative advice from anyone. Why do people always feel the need to comment and act like they know what’s best? Not just on parenting but in general? We are all entitled to our own opinion but does that mean we should force feed it to everyone else? NO IT DOESN’T! It’s hard enough bringing up a child with all the tantrums and sleepless nights; parents deserve support from other parents. Not negativity.
Since becoming parents we have had a few comments on how my husband and I should do this and that when it comes to raising our son. All constructive and/or positive comments/encouragement is much appreciated but if it’s destructive/negative advice we don’t really want to hear it as it sounds like you are saying “You are doing a bad job” and that just makes us feel even more crap about ourselves. Why not say how much of a good job we are doing or focus on the positives? However if you really must say something that could be taken negatively, try to make it constructive and preferably add a positive spin as I’m pretty sure most, if not all people respond better to that approach. It all comes down to trust. People have to just be able to trust you that you are doing the best you can. After all, it is YOUR child, not theirs.
I like to think my husband and my parenting style is relaxed, yet focussed. We don’t fret over the smallest things but are not naïve. Something our dear Jo-Jo said the other day about how I waved off a bit of mud on Cabbit’s hand; Jo loved how relaxed I was about it. I really needed to hear that as it made me smile and realise that I was doing a good job. Children will get covered in mud and all sorts; you can’t stop them or cover them up in cling film. You can help of course by washing and blah-blah-blah but you can’t prevent life from happening. As a matter of fact in my opinion, that would be completely counter-productive! Life is precisely what I believe any parent should want their child to experience; as fascinating and wondrous as it can be! Yes, obviously no parent wishes harm to come to their child, but if our children don’t get a chance to make and learn from SOME mistakes, they’ll never get to enjoy amazing things like DISCOVERY!!
I suppose when I think about it, it all depends on you as a person to how you develop your parenting style. It is your child and so it should be your decision as to how you bring them up, no one else’s. Never let anyone make you feel like you are doing a bad job or the wrong thing. Life is a learning curve, we make mistakes and we learn. Enjoy it while it lasts!
Hop hop wiggle wiggle