May 3, 2017

The Biggest Challenges Of Being A Good Parent

You don’t have to be a mom to know that making the leap into parenthood is one of the hardest things a person will ever have to do. After you actually bring a child into the world, there are all kinds of other challenges in store for you in the future. Watching your child struggle with things and having to step in to help them is one of the toughest things any mom will go through, and there’s no real way around it. From the very beginning, being a parent is all a balancing act between taking care of them practically, while avoiding being too overbearing, letting the child grow and learn from the mistakes they make. Here, we’ll look at the most challenging aspects of good parenting…


Financial Planning

Source: Wikimedia

While this post will focus mainly on the more social and emotional challenges of raising a child, there’s a very significant practical aspect to it when it comes to getting your finances in order. Children are adorable when they’re young, but they’re also very expensive! The average family in the US will spend roughly $165,000 on raising a child, so obviously, being financially prepared is very necessary! All of a sudden, you’re going to need to think about getting better health and life insurance policies, and may even want to look into things like short-term disability insurance. Then of course there’s diapers, strollers, cribs, baby monitors, safety gates, bottles, and other supplies you’ll need to account for. This, of course, is all before you have to worry about putting them through college! Some parents find it so difficult to support their children financially that they’ll quickly opt for tubal ligation or permanent male birth control. If there’s one piece of advice that all new parents need to follow when it comes to controlling their finances, it’s avoiding overspending. A lot of new parents on a tight budget will buy all kinds of non-essentials for their first baby, and quickly find that it’s all a big waste of money. The way you approach your finances needs to change pretty drastically when you have a child, so with everything else on your mind, don’t let this slip through the net!

Let your Child Experience the Pain of Consequences

Most parents go through one horrible experience where they take their eyes off their child for a split second, and in that little window of time, their son or daughter manages to tumble down some stairs or shut their fingers in a door. This is not only traumatic for a young child, but for their parents as well. When these things happen, you might instantly feel like a bad parent, and hate yourself for the perceived negligence. It’s important to realise that these feelings are natural, and more importantly, you can’t keep your children safe from everything, as much as you want to. Ultimately, your goal should be to learn from each little experience you have like this, and to adopt a reasonable attitude to what you can control, and what you can’t. On the subject of this, it’s very important to let your child experience the consequences of their actions from time to time. Take a moment to think of some of the biggest regrets in your life. Like most, there’s probably been a few that have taught you a valuable lesson, and helped to mold you into the person you are today. If you always take away the natural result of the poor choices and decisions your child makes, they’re never going to learn from these experiences. Protect them from the real dangers of the world, but don’t keep them totally cut off from the value of trial and error.

Dealing With the Physical Exhaustion

Even if you work out all the time and run a marathon every year, being a parent is extremely a massive physical strain. Aside from the necessities like cooking their meals, washing their clothes and their dishes, cleaning up their rooms and so on, you need to worry about all the other trials like helping them put together art projects, being a partner for games in the garden, all the while staying on top of your own working life and personal projects. For many parents, a good night’s sleep quickly becomes a distant memory, and all the hard work they put in is only really thanked by more hard work, and the odd tantrum! Even when you have a schedule in mind and share the responsibilities equally with your partner, you’re going to experience a lot of physical exhaustion as a parent, along with the slew of different emotions you’ll be going through. Just try to stay organised, focus on getting the task at hand out of the way, and avoid letting your physical stress boil over into an outburst. If you’ve only been a parent for a few years, it may seem like the constant physical exhaustion is only getting worse and worse. Ask any parent with grown-up kids, however, and they’ll tell you it will get easier with time.

Butting Heads

Source:Max Pixel


From little things like getting them to eat their vegetables to arguing with a teenager over their curfew, getting children to cooperate with you is one of the biggest challenges you’re going to have to tackle as a parent. When you go through the very worst of teenage mood-swings and toddler tantrums, it can make you wonder why you wanted children in the first place! The arguments and tantrums you’ll have to deal with in younger children are more or less unavoidable and universal, but when it comes to teenagers, the way you do your job as a mom becomes a little more serious. Obviously, you want your kids to have the best life possible, and you don’t want them to make the same kind of mistakes you did growing up. However, if you let an argument ensue out of every little thing you and your kid disagree on, it’s going to make life harder for both of you. When you establish your own little totalitarianism in the house, you might be able to get your kids to act the way you want, but you’ll make it much harder for them to learn from their mistakes as we covered earlier, and take the challenges of adult life in their stride. If your daughter’s dyed a bright purple streak in her hair and got a nose piercing, voice your opinion if you want, but don’t make it a bigger deal than it needs to be. You can probably remember some point where you and your parents had a little bicker over something you were wearing! However, if you see evidence of anything more serious like drug use, confront them more firmly about it. By picking your battles like this, you’ll make your job as a parent so much easier.

Waving Away your Ambitions and Dreams

For many parents, the job of raising children consumes their life so wholly that they forget all about their own aspirations, or find that they simply don’t have the time to make them happen. Obviously, it would be very selfish for any parent to put their personal dreams and projects before the welfare of their children. Having said that, a lot of people tend to pull the plug on their personal ambitions a little too early when they have kids. As the old saying goes, where there’s a will, there’s a way. While taking care of your family should always come first, don’t be too quick to let the various challenges and constraints of parenthood get in the way of the things that are important to you. Do some thorough research on whatever it is you want to achieve in life, and see if there’s any realistic way to do it while still being a good mom. If you were pursuing some kind of creative career before becoming a parent, set some time aside in your daily routine which you’ll devote to your current project, come hell or highwater. If you were saving for some once-in-a-lifetime trip, look at your personal budget, see where you can cut back expenses, and get into a savings plan that will gradually bring you closer. If you wanted to pursue some further education, distance learning  is making this more and more accessible for time-squeezed adults. In some instances, you’ll simply have to give up on your dreams and ambitions, and substitute them for being a parent. This can get you down for obvious reasons, but the experience of being a parent is an incredible experience, that no personal gain can really make up for!

Source:Flickr

Whether you’re expecting a child, or you’ve had a lot of experience as a parent, we’re sure you’ll agree that filling this role isn’t easy. You can read as many articles on parenting like this, but when it comes down to it, being the best mom you can be all depends on you, your children, and the various lessons both of you’ll both learn as you sail through life.