Your #parentfail may or may not shock your child, but it still affects how you feel about yourself as a parent.
Look up #ParentFail on social media and you’ll see a lot of humorous parenting stories. Here’s a few I found on twitter:
Well potty training didn’t go so well. I guess I can’t let the child go outside & poop like I let the dog go outside to poop! #parentfail
I was texting while my husband left for the bathroom and my little human swallowed a handful of play-doh. #parentfail
I’m finding my lectures to junior on screentime happen while I’ve got a recorded ZOOM in the background and I’m clutching a work and a personal phone #parentfail
Parents should laugh at themselves, even if it’s just to stay sane. However, even as you joke about your mistakes, many of you are still asking yourselves if your kids are going to suffer because of your #parentfails.
Perhaps in the past couple of quarantine months, you found yourself making daily #parentfails simply because 24/7 exposure to your kids gave you many more opportunities to make mistakes.
Read More on: How to Practice Patience With Your Child
If that’s you, and if you feel like you failed often during the homeschool and quarantine life, then it’s important for you to maintain a healthy and realistic perspective on parenting mistakes. For some of you, that may mean it’s time for a very clear mindset shift.
Here’s what you need to know about your #parentfail:
Don’t give in to the fear of being a “bad” parent:
Harsh judgment from others makes many parents fear that are a bad parent—even if they aren’t doing anything wrong. Living with that fear can lead to other problems:
- Parents refusing to let their kids fail because it might reflect on them as parents.
- Parents hiding mistakes, letting problems go unaddressed.
- Parents losing sight of their own values as they change parenting habits simply to not look bad. For instance, a parent may give in to their child’s tantrums in public simply because they don’t want to look bad.
Own up to your mistakes.
Admitting it to yourself is the first step. Then apologize to your child if it is needed. Before you can fix a problem or learn from your mistakes, you have to admit you made them.
Turn your #parentfail into a teachable moment.
Show and tell your child about how to apologize, how to accept responsibility for mistakes, and how to learn from them.
Make a plan for next time you feel a #parentfail coming on.
Pay attention to your triggers so you can know when a #parentfail might be imminent.
Your child is whining and it is driving you crazy. Previously you may have responded by raising your voice and focusing on the whining and not on their actual behavior.
Ask yourself: what do I need to do different when my child is whining?
Your child is not doing their homework and you want to revert to yelling and threatening.
Ask yourself: what do I need to do that will actually help my child do their work instead of just yell?
Your attempts at perfection could have just as much of a negative impact on your child as your mistakes.
Parenting Author Tim Elmore has this to say about #parentfails:
It’s our emotional baggage that’s become the greatest cause of our young people faltering as they enter adulthood. They’re unready because we actually failed to get them ready. And we failed, ironically, working so hard to prevent failure.
Let’s drop the perfect expectations. Let’s embrace the fact that failure happens to all of us. In fact, it has to happen in order for us to fully mature. Let’s embrace risk, and consequences to bad decisions so we know how to handle the tough times ahead. And let’s embrace all our warts and wrinkles — while staying passionate about life. The next generation deserves a healthy leader.
Parents, don’t worry about perfection. Shift your mindset to focus on learning from mistakes, recognizing your triggers, and creating a plan to face those triggers when they come again. Your kids don’t need perfect parents, they need real and honest ones.
If you’d like help creating a plan to address your mistakes and how to handle the triggers, I’d like to help. Schedule a free intro call here.