Mommy guilt, or daddy guilt, is a real thing. Our current social climate creates a frenzy of parents who want to be doing everything 100% correct all the time. That is a lot of pressure to put on yourself, and no doubt leads to feelings of guilt. I’m not sure if it has to do with the extensive research we have on care giving, or the over-sharing of today’s digital parents- but the pressure to be perfect is overwhelming. Here’s my 5 top tips for avoiding mommy-guilt
1. Get offline.
You need to turn off your computer, put down your phone, and play with your kids. Don’t join the facebook groups, or leave the judgy ones. Unfollow the IG parents who only post perfection. Remember, social media isn’t anyone’s real life, it’s their best life. Very few parents are posting on the days they didn’t brush their teeth, or videoing the toddler meltdowns in target. It’s a snapshot into the best parts of someone’s best day.
2. Understand that hurt people, hurt people.
If someone is intentionally hurting your feelings, it’s because they are hurt. We are not in charge of anyone’s healing but our own, so my point is not to fix them. My point is to understand that they are insecure, jealous, or angry, and taking it out on you. You can either let the passive aggressive comments roll off your back, find new friends, or just know that person is hurting.
3. Give yourself more grace.
You are still figuring out parenting and your child. You are just doing your best, so forgive yourself. Be your biggest cheerleader, and best friend. Get rid of the thoughts of being less than, and remind yourself that you are an awesome parent. You are the best parent for your child, and that is why you are their parent. On the harder days, reward yourself, and praise yourself where you can.
4. Check yourself.
Are you your own worst enemy? Do you find yourself drawn to other parents who are radiating judgement, or love? Do you find yourself gossiping about others, or praising them? Really take a look around your life, and see what you are surrounded by, and putting out into the world. If you don’t like what you see, take baby steps in the right direction. Open up discussion and tell your friends your goals “I’m so hard on myself lately. If you hear me talking negatively about my parenting, will you please call me out on it?” By involving them in reducing your parenting guilt, it might do the same for them.