A Trip Down Guilty Lane

I read an article on The Huffington Post yesterday titled, “Are We Raising a Generation of Helpless Kids?”  There is truth in the fact that we cannot be a nation of helicopter parents swooping in to save the day for our children. Kids  do need to experience disappointment and learn how to cope with it, and sometimes situations are their fault and they need to learn the proper way to apologize and handle consequences; but when my daughter is acting like a typical four old and I’m just too tired to deal with it, then no, it’s not her fault. It’s entirely my fault. 

Last night was not one of my best parenting moments. I was exhausted. My middle son seemed to have made it his mission to annoy his little sister with as much ferocity as he could muster. My older son had his middle school attitude dialed up to full volume, and my daughter did not sit still for four consecutive hours.  She was bouncing and jumping and yelling and knocking things over and then getting hurt in the process.  I have no idea where all of this energy came from, but I finally lost my temper (OK, a few times) and was not as kind and loving as I should have been. As I was tucking my daughter into bed, she looked at me and said, “Go away. You’re mean.”  

Bed time is when I overindulge with kisses and ‘I love yous’. This is the time when I typically crawl into bed and squeeze them tight so they know as they fall asleep that nobody loves them more than their mom. But last night, I was so frazzled that I just said, “I know. I love you though”, and I left the room so I could catch my breath.  

“You’re mean” is not that big of deal.  I’ve been mean before.  All moms have–there’s no way that you can spend all of you time with little people who are not always perfect and angelic and not be mean from time to time. But when my tiny little mini-me looks at me with her big eyes full of sadness and says “You’re mean” in a way that says so much more, then I know I’ve failed that day. 

A few minutes later I crawled into bed with her and hugged her tight.  I inhaled her scent and kissed her little face.  I told her I was sorry I was mean and that it wasn’t her fault.  

Because it wasn’t. 

We are a nation of busy parents.  We work, we rush our kids from school to practice to lessons. We are so tired, yet we expect our kids not to melt down, and when they do, we get annoyed and frazzled.  Getting annoyed and frazzled is our meltdown, and the double standard is that we expect our kids to get it and deal with it and not get annoyed with us

…and around the cycle of guilty parenting we go.  Image

Happy Thanksgiving from one guilty mom to another. 

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About Mrs Momblog

Mom of 3, wife of 1, teacher of 103. Sarcastic always.
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5 Responses to A Trip Down Guilty Lane

  1. Kate says:

    I tell them I am mean because I care, and I am mean because I love them during the good the bad AND the ugly. There are two kinds of mean, the I love you so much I want to choke you mean and the down right hurtful to the bones mean. I promise to only be mean out of love. ♥

  2. Heather says:

    Don’t beat yourself up. Being a parent is tough and if she has kids she will completely understand WHY! I never thought I’d understand my mom and her “meanness” either and then I was a mom..a single mom, working full time and going to school. Just. Like. Her! Suddenly it all made a lot more sense.

  3. Lovely, honest post. Thank you.

  4. JCMorrows says:

    GOD BLESS YOU for not spouting the party line so many people just fall into. None of us parents are perfect. And none of our kids are either. Parenthood does not come with an instruction manual and every child is different. Bless you!

    On that note, I have nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award!

    CONGRATULATIONS! GREAT BLOG!

    You can read more about this in the post below:

    http://jcsbookshelf.wordpress.com/2013/12/09/bonus-post-my-first-blog-award-the-versatile-blog-award

    God Bless You!

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