This post is written by the first guest author of this blog, Vivien. She is publishing InspirationBit, a blog about inspiration, life and resources that awaken our creativity.
First of all, I’d like to thank Simonne for giving me this great opportunity to write about children, family. I have a two year old daughter and I often wish I knew a bit more about parenting before I stepped into it, and that is why I’ve decided to write on this topic. Today is Mother’s Day in North America. I’m not sure if it is celebrated today in some other countries as well. But I’d like to congratulate every mom who’s reading this post and wish her a Happy Mother’s Day.
Sometimes I think I was re-born as a new person ever since my daughter was born. I certainly discovered some new qualities I never thought I had in me before. I’ve also learned a lot about parenting and life in general. I’d like to go over some of the misconceptions that most people have about parenting. Hopefully, both parents and non-parents will benefit from reading this.
Fear of becoming a parent.
Myth: We have no skills, no clues on how to raise a child, we’re not emotionally ready yet, not mature enough to become a parent.
Truth: I personally had my share of those fears: I had no idea on how to feed or change baby, how to take care of all her needs. Guess what – I learned it all, along with my husband, through trials and errors. Every parent has to go through a steep learning curve, but everyone eventually becomes a professional in this field.
Not Ready Financially
Myth: We must postpone having children until we are more financially stable.
Truth: Sometimes things can go from bad to worse, you may lose your job, go bankrupt, or get into some kind of other financial troubles. I myself had a well-paid full time job, then it was cut to a part-time job, and after sometime I’ve made up my mind that I should stop my wishful thinking and decided it’s time for me and my husband to have a baby. I eventually got laid off while being pregnant and had to resort to an early maternity leave. Guess what? Despite everything we managed to raise our child, and I was even able to go back to work while my daughter was still a baby, and build a better career than I had before we started the family. I owe this to my child for motivating me to build a better life for ourselves and for making me a stronger person and a better multitasker.
Parenthood is Torture
Myth: Children will change our lives, take away our freedom and torture to death with their constant cries and demands.
Truth: Yes, our lives will be changed. But for every painstakingly difficult moment there will be ten happy memorable moments filled with joy and laughter. Children are the ones who make our lives meaningful, turn us into responsible adults, and make us want to be a better person.
Rushing into Parenthood
Myth: It’s best to start a family as soon as we get married or together under one roof.
Truth: Just like it’s not a good idea to postpone your venture into parenthood for a very long time, it’s even a worse idea to have children when the couple doesn’t really know each other that well.
Parenthood will challenge your relationship, ending it with a divorce.
Divorce on its own is not a nice thing to go through for adults, but it is much worse when the children are at stake. My advice – get to know each other well enough before having children to be able to painlessly go through some fire together.
Myth: Oh, we’ve read so many books and articles on parenting, attended the seminars, that we know it all and are ready for everything
Truth: In reality every parenting experience is different, and your self-esteem may get crashed very soon for not being able to implement the advice-from-the-book in the actual case.
Listen and Follow Others
Myth: We should always listen to our parents when it comes to raising out children.
Truth: During the first month after my daughter was born, we were receiving tens of advices and suggestions about parenting – every day. We were drowning. After trying to implement some of them, I came to a conclusion that nobody has the right answer to address all the issues. Every child, every case is different and deserves an individual attention.
Parenthood shatters the couple’s relationship
Myth: We will never have that magic feeling we had before.
Truth: It all depends on how did you become a parent. If you rushed and you didn’t have enough of pre-children time together, as mentioned in myth #4, then having children might wreck your life as a couple. However if you were ready to sacrifice your old childless life for a new complete one, despite of lack of sleep, lack of free time spent together, if you’re always ready to support each other and take care of
your child together, then nothing and no one will ever wreck your marriage (union).
Parenthood is thankless
Myth: We give everything to our children, and what do we get back – nothing but requests to give more.
Truth: It’s true that we do so much for our children but what we get back from them is far more precious than any tangible thing in the world. We get their unconditional love and trust, their smiles and laughs charge us with the powerful energy, they motivate and inspire us to excel in everything we do. Before I became a mother I was often questioning myself what’s the meaning of life. Now I know the answer – it’s to give life to another human being and do everything in your power to build a happy life and the bright future for the new little human we call our child.
What other parenting myths you’d like to debunk or to find the truth about?