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We talk about our problems, joys, sorrows <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/blahblah.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="blah blah">. But rarely do we discuss the bigger picture of our mothering/fathering:<br><br><b>These are the things I do as a mother or father that I like:</b><br><br><b>These are the things I want to work on:</b><br><br><b>These are the things I like about my child, which I think are a direct result of my parenting:</b><br><br><b>These are the things my child does that I don't like so much, and which I think are a direct result of my parenting:</b><br><br><b>Triggers/tension points and what do about them:</b><br><br>
Consider it an online journal. My idea is to answer these questions in terms of the present - what I am doing now as a parent to a young child - and not the past - how I parented a baby.<br><br>
I'll go first!<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">These are the things I do as a mother or father that I like:</td>
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*I have always been a good listener. When my dd and I talk we make eye contact. I often get down to her level. If I don't understand I continue to ask questions until I do. I try very hard not to do the ol' uh-huh-OK-honey-without-looking-at-her-thing.<br>
I am also intuitive about her needs and desires.<br><br>
*I spend lots of time with my dd. I do have a woman coming three hours a day so I can get some rest. The rest of those hours (dh works 13-14 hours/day) are one-on-one time.<br><br>
*I give lots and lots of affection. Lots of skin-to-skin contact.<br><br>
*I respect my dd as a person. I allow her to make her own choices in everything. I try very hard not to question her if she says she has brushed her teeth and I suspect she hasn't. This is very important to me.<br><br>
*I offer lots of healthy foods, but I never refuse to give her a sweet if she asks. She rarely finishes one anyway.<br><br>
*I am trying to raise her far from the influence of media and big companies.<br><br>
*We love to sleep together!<br><br>
That's what I can think of for now.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">These are the things I want to work on:</td>
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*My patience has become shorter. I feel that this is due to our big move, my chronic pain, her increasing talkativeness. It was very difficult to slow down as much as we have over the past year. It has been so worth it! But it was still a difficult transition. But I think we're comfortable with our pace now. The pain makes me tried and irritable. Her incessant questions and talking drive me mad sometimes. I am keeping a journal (I bought a new one this morning) on my triggers. I am now stopping much quicker. I will get to a point where I raise my voice, but at the moment I will stop immediately after, go to her, give her a hug and explain what is bothering me. I'm hoping to get to a point where I can stop myself before screaming. But I'm so proud of myself for getting this far!<br><br>
* I sigh too much! My dd has started to sigh too, and it's going to drive me batty knowing that it's because of me! And I really don't want to sigh when she's talking my ear off - I can imagine how it would feel to be a child and feel like you're boring your mommy to death.<br><br>
* I want to have more energy, more joy.<br><br>
* I think I buy her things too often. On the one hand, she needs things for activities to keep her busy with her babysitter and we don't go to the store very often, so it's not every day. But when we do go to the store she wants something. I have to say that she doesn't scream if she doesn't get anything. I just think she has enough things (and she doesn't have even one quarter of what all the other kids in her playgroup have).<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">These are the things I like about my child, which I think are a direct result of my parenting</td>
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* She is calm (rarely tantrums anymore), self-confident (can stick up for herself - even with me), creative, musical, inquisitive. Those are the things I think can be traced to my mothering.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">These are the things my child does that I don't like so much, and which I think are a direct result of my parenting</td>
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She is developing a temper. Not tantrums. A bonafide temper. I am talking to her about how I am working on mine; hopefully she'll follow suit.<br><br>
Like I said above, she has started to sigh.<br><br>
She grits her teeth. Both dad and I do it. She does it when she feels love and when she feels anger. We talk to her about it, but neither of us has stopped doing it.<br><br>
She is not good with the cat. She can be. She knows perfectly well how to handle the cat and will show it. But then you find her stepping on its tail, holding him by the neck, etc. I do positive reinforcement for the good handling. We have removed the cat from the situation; we have removed her from the situation. We have locked ourselves inside the house and the cat outside the house. I would gladly give him away if I could.<br><br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Triggers/tension points and what do about them</td>
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Fatigue<br>
Too much sensory input<br>
Pain<br>
Cat problem will get me screaming!<br><br>
GOTTA GO! I'll finish later!
 

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Good exercise, PM-how are you feeling? I'm so happy you're finding ways to be more patient!<br><br>
These are the things I do as a mother or father that I like:<br><br>
I'm very intuitive and emotionally present. I'm a lot of fun & have lots of energy to play with her. I validate who she is and I let her be herself without projecting my desires. I expose her to so many things. I know I'm doing what I can to create a happy childhood for her.<br><br>
These are the things I want to work on:<br><br>
Patience.<br><br>
These are the things I like about my child, which I think are a direct result of my parenting:<br><br>
Her high degree of self-confidence and sense of Self. Her curiosity about the world around her. How affectionate and caring she is.<br><br>
These are the things my child does that I don't like so much, and which I think are a direct result of my parenting:<br><br>
Has a hard time accepting "no" and compromising when needed.<br><br>
Triggers/tension points and what do about them:<br><br>
I'll come back for this!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ladylee - On the road to recovery - but it's going to be a long haul.<br><br>
How are YOU? Almost there, huh? Incredible! It seems like yesterday you told me you are pregnant!<br><br>
So...<br>
Triggers/tension points:<br><br>
Fatigue<br>
Too much sensory input<br>
Pain<br>
Cat problem will get me screaming!<br>
Whining (rare)<br><br>
Ways to deal:<br>
Get quality rest - not easy with back pain<br>
When feeling tired or dd is whining: take bath with dd; light incense and listen to story or music with dd; go for a walk; think of - or have dd think of - fun activity (this afternoon dd decorated a tree outside as a X-Mas tree); go water the garden or hang the laundry.<br><br>
When feeling irritated and ready to explode: get down on dd's level and make eye contact; laugh; take a 5-minute potty break; clap hands; take a walk with dd; propose a tea together.<br><br>
Cat: not sure
 

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I hope are doing well Parismom. I struggle with being impatient with my kids, especially when it takes forever to get them ready to leave the house...<br><br>
I like that I'm an intuitive creative connected mom, but I also get overloaded and need to disconnect.<br><br>
I'm not a high energy, fun, social mom- but fortunately or not, both my kids like to do art and I am an artist so we are all on the same wavelength about spending time together at our easels- even my 18 month old demanded his own paints and to stand and paint with us in the basement studio.<br><br>
We also go for walks and spend time gardening and running around in the woods at the park- I am happy that we all enjoy those things. This will probably change as they get older.<br><br>
I have a health condition I'm working with that makes me extremely tired and sometimes sick- hoping that I can heal and be able to be a more high-energy mom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I have a health condition I'm working with that makes me extremely tired and sometimes sick- hoping that I can heal and be able to be a more high-energy mom</td>
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I do too! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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Parismaman, I have to tell you.... this thread scares me. I keep opening it but haven't the guts to answer these challenging questions. Yet. You definitely have me thinking.
 

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Great thread! Don't know if my brain will be able to think everything out tonight, but I will give it a try:<br><br>
These are the things I do as a mother or father that I like:<br><br>
I allow my children to explore things and ideas in their own way without always showing or telling them how something is 'supposed' to be.<br><br>
I read to them daily<br><br><br>
These are the things I want to work on:<br><br>
Patience - seems to be a theme here. Our family is going through a VERY stressful time and it is so hard for me to get control of my own emotions as to not put them onto my children.<br><br>
I need to work on treating their father better - I tend to vent out to my DH because he is 'safe' but I know that they see and sense that an I am not being a good role model.<br><br>
I want to eat healither - we were doing really well for awhile, and with everything that has been going on it has slipped a bit.<br><br>
I need to slow down, I need to listen more closely - and stop worrying about the 'next thing'<br><br>
These are the things I like about my child, which I think are a direct result of my parenting:<br><br>
I would like to think that my childrens empathy and absoult sense of wonderment and curiosity has something to do with how I have raised them so far.....<br><br>
These are the things my child does that I don't like so much, and which I think are a direct result of my parenting:<br><br>
My children are very demanding and short on patience - both of which are terrible attributes of mine - espically when dealing with their father (see above) he is such a wonderful man....I am lucky that he puts up with me!<br><br>
Triggers/tension points and what do about them:<br><br>
fatigue<br>
stress<br>
I really freak out when I get it in my head that I have to do something 'RIGHT NOW' and I am unable to complete it - regardless of how unimportant it may be.....it is like my frustration level is so peaked and I loose it instantly.....I think I have anxieny issues.....<br><br>
I need to take care of myself better (for example I NEVER leave the house with out full juice cups for the kids and an extra in the cooler pack but NEVER remember to pack water for myself - I am constantly thirsty) excersize more....<br><br>
I need to really stop and think about the moment before I let it take over for me.<br><br><br>
whew.......more to think on....
 

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things i do that i like:<br>
-verbally mirror dds emotions, validate, empathise, and (usually) avoid taking it personally.<br>
-listen and consider new ideas, open to change and admit when i have been wrong<br>
-try not to project own emotions, desires onto dd, avoid voicing evaluations<br>
-let her lead her own play<br>
-believe in her competence.<br><br>
things i am working on:<br>
-anger and general grouchiness<br>
-modeling a healthy body image and eating habits (one of my greatest goals is that dd make it to aduthood loving her body and what it does for her vs. seeing self as a living decoration.)<br>
-consistency. man, i am so moody, and i let it effect my interactions with her way too much.<br>
-modeling apropriate ways of relating to others. i feel like i am learning healthy social skills at a bout half the rate of the rest of the world.<br><br>
things i like about my child that i think are due to my parenting:<br>
-she communicates her wishes and often verbalizes feelings, such as "i need a hug"<br>
this other stuff is hard to know if it is innately her, or a result of parenting, or a combination, but here are some things i like about her no matter what caused them:<br>
-extremely caring about babies<br>
-outgoing, openly affectionate and enthusiastic, also very verbal<br>
-physically adventurous<br>
-self advocates<br>
-dances and paints with freedom<br><br>
things she does that worry me and that i may have caused:<br>
-bites nails (the first incidence of this directly coincided with a three day depression that left me couchbound <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> )<br>
-can be somewhat overbearingly affectionate. her hugs can be more like tackles and she often refuses to let go, even when other kid is crying i have to pry her off<br>
but overall, i have goatta say, she seems remarkably well adjusted relative to how i often i feel like i am screwing up as a parent<br><br>
triggers, tension points and what to do about them:<br>
when i am feeling lack of love for myself<br>
feeling hurried<br>
feeling unhappy about relationship with dh<br>
when i feel that i have been giving all day, and see no positive results<br>
when i am unhappy with the way that i have been parenting, i seem more inclined to continue parenting badly<br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/confused.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Confused">:<br>
gotta go think about the 'what to do about them" part.
 

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These are the things I do as a mother or father that I like:<br><br>
i like that i am always with my son. i play with him & have fun with him & he knows i want to be near him. he is four & i have only NOT been with him for maybe 100 hours total. this is when he is with his daddy. he is my #1 priority.<br><br>
These are the things I want to work on:<br><br>
my temper, which is just like my mom's when i was little. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> sometimes i get irrationally mad at something dumb. it scares me & it scares joe.<br><br>
These are the things I like about my child, which I think are a direct result of my parenting:<br><br>
he is artistic & creative & smart & i think that is because i have always encouraged him. i praise whatever he does, (not excessively) & i will never ridicule or berate him for making a mistake.<br><br>
ETA: i also love that one of joe's best friends has autism & is VERY different from other kids their age~ i love that he doesn't seem to notice that she is different at all. i think this is because of the way i interact with her. it also has to do with the fact that joe is a really COOL kid!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
These are the things my child does that I don't like so much, and which I think are a direct result of my parenting:<br><br>
he has a temper. my temper. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> he sometimes gets easily frustrated & he says, it's just no use. i must learn to control my temper & impatience. i tell joe when i have acted badly & i always apologize.<br><br>
Triggers/tension points and what do about them:<br><br>
one or both of us being tired, me trying to rush when joe just wants to be in the moment. thinking on what to do about this...<br><br>
this thread is helpful to me, i have been critical of myself for yelling & swatting joe, but i just looked at what i typed:<br><br><b>i will never ridicule or berate him for making a mistake.</b><br><br>
i am working on the yelling/ anger issues, & i am so glad that i do not ever have the urge to say cruel things to my son.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks to everyone for contributing to this thread. It has been helpful just to read other mom's responses.<br><br>
I'm doing really well. When I hear my voice rise now I am able to recognize that and calm down immediately. I see Iris start to get upset and I get down to her level and reassure her that I am not going to get angry. (BTW I know I may sound like a screaming monster when I talk about this stuff...I'm not, it's not that bad.)<br><br>
Today, though, she had been outside with the cat. I had previously closed the front door because she was being a little too exuberant with the cat. I screwed up and told her she didn't know how to handle the cat well enough to play with him. This is something that Iris can't stand! I don't blame her! I've caught myself twice saying "you don't know how" and it drives me batty! It frustrates her and creates a desire that wasn't necessarily there before. Anyway. She got angry at me and went to her room to slam the door. She came back out minutes after, feeling ashamed. I said "You got angry at me." And I showed her how she had expressed that "You did this rrrrgghh! at me" making the gesture she had made. She denied it. I said, "Ok we can talk again when you want." She told me that she was gentle with the cat and she showed me how. I never want to say "no, that's not how you are" so I let her try again. So she went out there and I watched from the window (where she couldn't see me). She was doing fine so I went to finish the dishes. Then she came back in and said "Hit!" (in French). So I said "You want to hit me?" "No!" "Are you angry at me?" "No! I want you to get angry at me and hit me!" I haven't hit her. So I'm a bit puzzled. Did she do something she knows is wrong? Why did she want me to hit her? She knows about hitting because she has hit me plenty. Sometimes when she gets really upset we end up on the couch snuggling and she sometimes falls asleep. Maybe that's what she wanted?<br><br>
Wow! This ended up long. That's my journal entry for the day!!
 
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