Parents Need A Life Too

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We invest so much time in our children that sometimes we neglect to take care of our own needs. I spend half my time these days asking parents to put their children first and the other half warning them to take some time for them. It gets really confusing when this advice is given to the same parent.

When kids become challenging, parents focus on that situation, often for the first time ever. Parent's whole life suddenly revolves around the everyday activities of their kids. Simple actions, commonplace episodes take on a momentous meaning. We become aware of every single word, glance, and movement our kids make. That is when it happens! Suddenly, we are parents and only parents. We now give up the rest of our life.

As bad behavior in our kids becomes the norm, we take on the roles of investigator, teacher, counselor, police officer, and jailer. It leaves little time to be a wife or husband, a worker, or an individual. Time is filled with duties that take away from a social life and our friends. Although we commend your commitment to parenting, there needs to be more.

It is obvious difficult children are wearing. They deplete energy and creativity. They tend to change a sunny disposition to a gloomy one. You need some type of respite from the constant battle and you deserve it.

As soon as your individuality and personality is swallowed up in the flood of trouble that these children can stir up, your life loses its meaning and it can effect your well being and health.

Even when your kids are at their worse, take time for you. In between skirmishes, go for a walk, take a bubble bath, listen to music, exercise, or read. Talk with a good friend for support and the continuity of an adult life you need to maintain sanity. Don't ever stop working toward better behavior in your children, but make sure you are strong enough to fight the battle. If you make yourself ill or choose to lose your own life in the rubble, your child will not win either.

Credits: Jo Ann Wentzel

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