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I’m Not Sure 100% Perfect is Possible or Even Desirable...

I don’t know how it seems to other people but I increasingly feel there is a sense that you could and should be a perfect parent. I certainly feel that pressure. If I see any article that starts with words such as, “10 things you must do to make sure your child is happy” I instantly read it and judge myself against the list. Then I wait a moment. And remind myself to breathe. And, having done this, I work hard to remind myself that I am human. And that, sometimes, being ‘good enough’ has to be enough. I wonder if you have a ‘You think that’s bad...’ friend? A ‘You think that’s bad...’ friend is the one you can sit with (usually with a glass of wine) and quietly tell them of a parent fail*. *A parent fail = 1) Something that you’re not proud of. 2) A parenting moment you feel you could have done better. 3) A parenting moment when you think/know you crashed and burned. A parent fail is something you can only share with your ‘You think that’s bad...’ friend. They will sit there and listen, nod understandingly, not judge you, (fill up your wine glass), and then they perform their key function. They step in and share their parent fail, deliberately designed to trump yours, a story intentionally shared to ensure you know you’re not alone. And let’s be clear, it’s not that the two of you are out there deliberately failing as parents. In fact, the opposite is true. You are out there loving as mightily as you can but proving yourself to be human time and again, as much as you wish it wasn’t the case. One of my children, who was about six at the time, came home from school and started chuckling loudly. I asked him what was funny. “Someone at school today said that their parents are always right and never make mistakes. I laughed and said, ‘Wow! My Mummy makes mistakes all the time.’” He’s right, I do, and I want him to know it. I also want him to know that I am sorry when I make a mistake, because I am, really sorry. Knowing that I make mistakes hopefully allows him to feel free from the pressure of being perfect. Because he is also human! I very much hope that my readiness to share my mistakes with him will allow him to feel comfortable enough to choose to sit with me and quietly share his moment of ‘fail’. Something he is not proud of. A moment he feels he could have done better. And I promise him I will always sit there and listen, nod understandingly and not judge him. And then I’ll make us both hot chocolate (because he’s a bit too young for wine!). #TheWorryWizard #fromWorriestoWellbeing #wellbeing #compassion #selfcompassion #empathy

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