Parenting Can Feel Isolating

The moment I left my job to stay home with Esme, I felt alone. Alone in a way I had never experienced. It was isolation coupled with the unknowing that left me at a loss. I was doing a job I knew nothing about, with zero training, no real mentors and monumental tasks and expectations. Overnight I would become the entire sustainability for another human being—one that was my flesh and blood, one I wanted more than anything and knew nothing about.

My friends were of no help. I was the first to have a child and they were all steadfast in their careers and single adult living. I quickly became jealous and resentful. I couldn’t even go to lunch or coffee or even a walk around the block without my baby. I was chained to her and there was no getting away, EVER. I was trapped and felt like a caged animal.

Because I wanted to have a family so desperately, acknowledging the isolation felt guilty and wrong, almost as if I didn’t have the right to be upset or have my feelings...

Continue Reading...

My New Normal

All I ever wanted was to be a mother, and once I became a mother, it wasn’t all I ever wanted. I loved my daughters with all my heart and found the “tasks” of being a mom easy. I breastfed, wore my kids constantly and co-slept trying to be a “good” attachment parent. The emotional aspects of parenting are what eluded me. I didn’t “understand” my kids, their upsets and what they unearthed. Crying, tantrums and general discontent seemed to trigger an SOS in my nervous system, leaving me feeling at a complete loss as to how to respond appropriately. I wanted it to stop and did everything in my power to make that happen. The shushing, rocking, swaddling, bribing, distracting and punishing left me exhausted and feeling awful about myself and my parenting. Had I just known then what I know now, that crying is OK, feelings are part of being an emotional person and listening is the key to helping babies and children feel heard and understood....

Continue Reading...

Why I Wasn't Prepared to be a Parent

If you had met me 10 years ago and asked me about becoming a new mom I would have told you I had everything figured out. My baby registry was filled with all the newest thingamabobs and doohickies. I had read Dr. Sears, Sweet Dreams, The Happiest Baby on the Block, and a half dozen other baby books of the time. The birth plan I constructed after attending hours of Bradley Method Instruction was “iron-clad”.  But when I brought that sweet little baby home, I was at a complete loss. I remained that way on and off, even though the birth of a second child and into the throws of preschool until I decided I needed help—a new direction, one that would allow me to feel good about my parenting instead of manipulating, threatening and coercing.

To get my two young girls to do as I asked, I set up systems that didn’t allow them to fail for fear they would be penalized with either a “time-out”, taking away a precious toy and TV time, or...

Continue Reading...
Close

50% Complete

Form

By joining the Peace and Parenting community you agree to receive encouraging emails weekly from Peace and Parenting. (You may unsubscribe at any time.)