By Luz Maria Villagras Surco, CEO and Founder of Positive Living UAE
Sometimes social media can make parenting look easy and effortlessly, but the ‘Truth' is becoming a parent and raising a child is one of the most challenging journeys if we don’t really understand about parenting real facts. There are many myths about parenthood that we should be aware of to be loving, healthy conscious parents. Hereunder, I suggest seven of those myths and discuss the facts that surround those topics.
Myth #1: Parenting is easy and comes Naturally?
Many parents believe that parenting just comes naturally and is a nice loving, selfless act of LOVE. Parenting seems so appealing to couples as they feel having a child will complete their happiness and is all about koochy lovy dobby love and is a beautiful experience.
Facts: Parenting can be a hard and a tiring experience, not only physically traumatic for mothers but also emotionally challenging, especially if you don’t have help around you. Having children means no more freedom, it means that you must become mindful of your emotional state and recognize triggers that you don’t transfer to your child. Understanding the emotional state required and the logistic’s needs of having a child is KEY to consider becoming a parent.
Myth #2: We Must Produce Successful Children that are Ahead of the Curve
Some parents believe that their child must be successful in many subjects, academics, sports, and extra-curricular activities. We are driven by social media, culture, traditions, religious beliefs and other socio-cultural needs, but the child is born into this world with their own authenticity and you will see that as parent only if you are open to allow it to happen naturally and not by pressure.
Facts: The truth is that every child is different (authentic). A parent should not expect their child to exceed in the parents’ agenda, especially in the first years of life. Pushing a child to do or be something they are not, would not just harm their self-esteem, but could also harm the relationship between the parent and child.
Myth #3: We Must Raise Happy Children
While it is true that we want our kids to grow up and live a happy life. We must also be aware that kids are going to cry, be dissatisfied, be discontent, and have many other human emotions besides happiness. Parents must come to the realization that they can not make their child happy all the time, and that is okay.
Facts: As a child grows older and gets into the teenage years, parents must put their egos aside and let teens go through big emotions without scolding them for feeling these emotions. A parent’s instinct may be to get angry themselves after a teen slams their bedroom door, but that parent must understand that the child has human emotions like many adults. Parents should not become helicopter mothers and fathers and try to fix every little thing. Instead, a conscious parent should encourage their child to be independent and mindful. The best way to do this is to be a mindful parent themselves. Talk about feelings with your child and let them know their feelings are valid, irrelevant of the type of emotions.
Myth #4: We Must Control our Kids
Overseeing another person gives parents the idea that we must always control our kids.
Facts: However, this is not true and actually harmful to their wellbeing. As a parent or any human, it is hard to let go, but it is very important to let children make their own mistakes and deal with the consequences. Being a conscious parent means you are aware when you are projecting what you want into your child and realizing when you must back off and allow the authenticity of your child to guide. Remember, we want our kids to grow up as smart and independent individuals, and to do that we must allow them to make choices on their own.
Myth #5: There are Good and Bad Children
The media has parents believe that there are good and bad children, but that is just not the case.
Facts: Most of the time when our children are being “bad”, it is because they are making us uncomfortable; however, we do not realize that the reason we feel uncomfortable is because it has opened a wound deep inside ourselves from something that happened to us in the past. When we label our students as good or bad, we are not being consciously present and not understanding that our children are just reacting to either US (parents) or themselves, and they are expressing who they are in that moment.
Myth #6: All We Need is Love to be a Good Parent
Many believe that the only thing one needs to be a good parent is to love their child.
Facts: However, what a parent thinks is love, the child could see it as something else. Have you ever caught yourself saying, “I am only punishing you because I want the best for you?” or “You can’t go to your friends because I want you to be safe”. Parents need to make sure that they avoid punishing a child because of their irrational fears. We as parents need to make sure that we create boundaries that both the parent and child understands, be consistent with the limits of these boundaries, create alternatives that children can have when parents say “no”, and acknowledge the feelings of your child.
Myth #7: Parenting is About the Child
Parenting is not just about the child.
Facts: Parenting is mainly about you as a parent. When a parent is fully conscious and doing conscious parenting, it requires to understand that whatever undesirable feeling you have with your child at any moment is really about you! (parent). The parent must be aware of their unconscious triggers and wounds so that they can be fully present with their child.
Luz Maria Villagras Surco has a bachelor degree in Psychology, is a Clinical Hypnosis Therapist, NLP Practitioner and a Certified Conscious Parenting Coach based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Luz Has customized Parenting Coaching Programs for parents willing to take a journey of discovery and healing through the experience of parenting a child “Consciously”.