Today “guilt” is such a powerful factor in changing parent’s thinking and behavior. Am I doing enough for my baby? Am I a good parent? How can I be a better parent? But how guiltiness affects the parenting itself?
So, you are probably wondering, where is the problem? Well, we certainly need to reflect on ourselves from time to time. However, the problem starts when parents are constantly questioning themselves about that, and therefore, they stop setting limits or boundaries for their children.
Moms, as well as dads, forget that creating restrictions for their children is actually a part of being a good parent.
Children are in need of both: vitamin “yes” and vitamin “no”. Kids require parent’s guidance in order to encourage right behaviors and to discourage the wrong ones. Likewise, setting limits for your children is vital for teaching them self- control and secure feeling.
Just imagine a boy, who would scream for one hour long, so his mom would buy him a new toy. If the mom will choose to buy that toy, she will be teaching her son a new strategy – scream until you get what you want! If you look around, you will see plenty of similar cases, where kids learn the opposites of what parents actually want…
Thanks to feelings of guiltiness, mothers and fathers just give up and so, they are losing control over their children. Working moms usually feel guilty for being away from kids and because of that, they would allow their little ones to go an extra mile which can’t be reversed back. Similarly, fathers would permit their kids to play outside late in the evening, just for a sake of being “a better dad”.
As sleep is probably the most misunderstood and confusing aspect of parenthood nowadays, the number of sleep-deprived children keeps increasing instead of decreasing. I heard so many times mothers and fathers saying: “My baby does not need lots of sleep!” or “I don’t know how to make him sleep!”, “What can I do if my child does not like to sleep!”.
I strongly believe that “a good parent” is someone who takes care of the child’s needs and does the right thing. Sleep is a necessity and not a luxury! Teaching your child, how to fall asleep on his own is doing the right thing. Part of being “a good parent” is doing the hard stuff, like teaching your child how to fall asleep independently. Many parents want to be “the nice parent” but that is not always being “the good parent”.
I am very sure that each mom’s and dad’s goal is to provide love, comfort, and safety for their kids. I have noticed that during the minutes of magic – when the child lands in our hands, our both identities connect. Kid’s discomfort, struggles, and tears become proof of our failure. So, we tend to become angry and upset because we try to solve the problem, not knowing that feelings are not a problem to be solved…
Unfortunately, so many children are unable to learn independent sleep skills and healthy sleep habits just because their moms or dads feel guilty and can’t tolerate any crying. Sadly, but plenty of families continue to struggle with their children sleep for years instead of committing themselves to solve it. They reject “a short time pain for a long-time gain” and that is unfair for the development and well-being of their children!
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