Do you ever feel guilty about your parenting skills? Many parents berate themselves for the little things, even when they are doing a great job of raising a child.
Parents are not robots – here are 15 things parents don’t need to feel guilty about.
1. Letting Your Child Watch TV
Although you like the idea of raising your child without television, you’re not sure when you’d ever get anything done. The peaceful half an hour while your child watches cartoons is one of the only chances you get to clean the house – and it’s a total godsend. Don’t feel guilty about it.
2. Enjoying Your Job
Loving your child doesn’t have to mean you have to always hate being apart from them. Before you had a child, it is likely you felt passionate and invested in your job. Having a child doesn’t change that, and you don’t need to feel guilty about enjoying your work – you simply have something else in your life that you love and adore.
3. Having Secret Treats For Yourself
Being a parent is extremely rewarding and fun, but it can also be difficult and tiring. So if you love expensive chocolate, treat yourself – and feel free to keep it at the back of the cupboard, hidden behind supermarket brand chocolate. You’re doing a great job, and you deserve it!
4. Needing Alone Time When Your Children Are Awake
Having a child often means you don’t get much time alone, but giving birth doesn’t mean you have to sign away all of your rights to privacy. After a hard day, it’s okay to shut your bedroom door for half an hour so you can read a good book – you’re still right there if your children need you.
5. Taking A Vacation With Your Friends Or Family
Every parent needs the occasional break, and a short trip away can rejuvenate you and leave you feeling amazing. You know your children would hate to stay in a spa for a few days (the other guests probably wouldn’t enjoy it, either), so lie back and enjoy your back massage, safe in the knowledge your children are probably being spoiled rotten by their grandparents.
6. Worrying About Your Child’s Development
Parents can often become competitive when talking to other parents about their children, which can make you feel competitive, too – and then guilty later!
From potty training to your child still sucking their thumb, try not to feel guilty that you’re worried about your child’s development. You’re doing fine as a parent, and your child will naturally develop at their own pace.
7. Not Volunteering At Your Child’s School
Every day you make sure your child is dressed, fed, clean and happy – and this is a huge accomplishment in itself! It can take the whole day, too; you have no idea how other parents factor in time to hand out folders or snacks at school.
8. Yelling at Your Child When They Haven’t Done Anything Wrong
At some point as a parent – probably after a particularly long and stressful day, you may find yourself raising your voice with your child, even though they don’t deserve it. It’s very hard not to feel guilty about this, but you are only human, and it can be a useful opportunity to explain to your child that even parents make mistakes sometimes.
9. Feeding Your Child Junk Food
Many parents feel guilty about feeding their child junk food, but after a stressful day sometimes the drive-through is the best option for both you and your kids. Many parents use junk food as an occasional treat for their children; don’t forget that it isn’t poisonous, it just isn’t very nutritious! As long as you don’t make it a daily occurrence, let yourself off the hook for this.
10. Giving In To Your Children
Every so often you will surrender to your children and give them whatever they want – normally so you can have ten minutes of peace and quiet. You normally stick to your guns, so don’t feel guilty that you occasionally give in; it helps to keep you sane!
11. Letting Your Parents Or Partner Take Your Children To Places You Don’t Like
Theme parks, swimming pools and Disney concerts are busy, filled with queues, and really loud. For you it is a nightmare, but for your children it is heaven – as well as a great childhood memory.
You don’t need to feel guilty if you occasionally miss these events; you know you’ll never miss any important event in their lives.
12. Being Unable To Afford Expensive Extras
Some parents are lucky enough to be able to send their children to music lessons and ballet classes, but that isn’t the most important part of being a parent. Try not to feel guilty about this one; the most important thing to give your child is love.
There are also lots of free and cheap ways to benefit your child, such as local parks and libraries.
13. Looking Forward To Your Child Going To Bed
Never feel guilty about looking forward to some alone time with a glass of wine – everyone deserves time alone, even parents! Don’t forget that this morning you were probably looking forward to spending the evening hearing about your child’s day.
14. Finding Some Parts Of Being A Parent Tiresome
You love your child, and sometimes you are taken aback by the funny, intelligent and beautiful little person you have made. However, you still find it irritating that you have told your child at least 200 times to put their clothes in the laundry basket.
15. Throwing Away Old School Projects
There are some paintings your child has done that you will cherish forever, and are priceless to you. The only thing is, your child comes home from school with about ten different arty creations every week; if you kept them all, your house could star in an episode of Horders.
Featured photo credit: Young mother and father with newborn via shutterstock.com