The Joy Of Shared Love

pppFRy1434361895The love for our children is like no other. It is a special and unique feeling that we can only have for our kids. It is unconditional. They can scream, keep us awake, be sick on us and draw on the walls but we still love them.

The love we feel is amazing but it comes with a huge amount of responsibility.

We are in charge. In some ways we can feel more vulnerable than ever before. We have these little people who are totally reliant on everything we do. And at the same time we are so emotionally reliant on them being okay too.

This is where having others around us who also love our children is deeply reassuring. Seeing our partner, family and even friends interact and connect with our little ones is heartening and it makes that sense of responsibility a little lighter.

The joint love and shared concerns can bring relationships closer together. Our lives merge with our families somewhat. The advent of children means that we have similar aims and something to feel mutual joy over.

Many of the Mums I interviewed spoke of changes in their relationships once they had children. Families that other wise met occasionally were gelled together by the love of the children. Partner relationships were certainly strained by the additional work and responsibility, yet the shared love and sense of being a family also brought a new closeness and direction.

With time it is also wonderful to see those relationships that our children have with others develop. Witnessing them bond with other adults and get different things from them each person is amazing.

Having others around us who love our children is deeply reassuring Click To Tweet

Occasionally it can be hard to see the love our child has for someone else particularly when it feels preferential. The ‘only wanting Daddy moments’ (or vice versa) or the “I love Granny more than you” statements are not easy. But with time we realise that the benefits of them having a bond with another far outweighs those odd times of hurt.

There are always challenges to relationships that the advent of children will not change. Long term resentments can be hard to work through and the addition of children can actually make this feel more intense. When there is conflict or just a difference of opinion it is tough (particularly when it is over the care of our kids). However, sometimes children can make it more worthwhile to work on the relationship difficulties, allowing the dynamic to change and mature.

For some of us unfortunately there are destructive people in our lives that will never be helpful or reassuring. Some Mothers I have met have chosen to distance themselves from very damaging connections once they have had children. Their new responsibilities helped them make that move because they could see that caring for their kids and themselves was paramount.

Our children will always be our responsibility. Yet having others who share in that helps in so many ways.

Who else loves your children? Has that been of comfort to you? Has it brought any difficulties with it? I would love to hear about your experiences. I reply to every comment.

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46 thoughts on “The Joy Of Shared Love

  1. My parents have a very close bond with my children, my son especially is really close to his granny and I do love that and take comfort from it. I think it’s so important to have these influences for the little ones as well as for us. We can learn a lot from our parents! Thanks for linking up to #sundaysstars
    Julia @ Rainbeaubelle recently posted…Sunday Stars 21 June 2015My Profile

    1. Hi Julia. I am glad to hear about the relationship your son has with your parents. It is deeply comforting and great for him. You are right we learn a lot from our parents and we learn more about them, through watching them interact with our children. thanks for commenting.

    1. I love this. Being a parent has so many conflicting feelings within it and this is a perfect example. Thank you for adding to this conversation.

    1. Hi Catie. Your point about the relationship we keep up for the kids sake is a great one. I had not thought of that and it is so true. There we are making a decision about what is best for our kids and putting them first. You have also led me to think about how it feels with those relationships, to see our kids loving someone who has been a problem in our lives. That is challenging. thank you for your insightful comment.

    1. Hi Sarah. the family dynamic does alter, sometimes making it more complicated but often just gelling it together through the shared interest. I know what you mean about Grandparents. some of the Mums I interviewed for my book said that they felt left out too. It went from pregnancy and always being asked how you are to every one only noticing the baby. Glad it settled down.

      The hurtful comments are hard which os why I wrote a post on Dealing with it last week, however when we realise what is behind them it gets easier. Thanks for commenting and sharing your experiences.

    1. Hi Sophie, That is amazing. what a wonderful thing for her to experience and for you to see. Thank you for sharing your experiences of being an Army wife.

  2. My children are extremely blessed with two sets of devoted Grandparents and Uncles, Aunties and friends who love them and give them lots of attention and us lots of support. We had some jealousy issues with my brother as he thought my parents were devoting more time to my sisters and my children, it made things strained for a while, but thankfully he now has apologised and realised it was just his stressed state that was causing issues. Family can be a great support but can be hard when there is tension. Great Post! thanks for linking with
    Mackenzie Glanville ( recently posted…The Bellarine Big 4 Movie Trailer #mummy & usMy Profile

    1. That sounds wonderful for them to have so many people to connect with. Human relationships are not always straightforward, in fact that are rarely so, but we grow in understanding of ourselves and others through working on them. Glad to hear things have worked out with your brother. Thanks for sharing your experiences within your family.

  3. When I was on bed rest our baby really only wanted to be with his other mummy. I rationalized it but it still hurt. It’s lovely to see him happy to go with either of us now, especially seeing as he is still with his other mummy, who stays at home with him, more.

    Mama, My Kid Doesn’t Poop Rainbows recently posted…A Dirty ProtestMy Profile

    1. I can really understand your mixed emotions here. I had a similar time. After one of my boys was born I was very ill and my husband had to care for him. The upside of it was that in the long run he became totally interchangeable between the two of us which was so helpful. Thanks for sharing your experiences. It is at once wonderful and tough to see our little ones bonding with other people.

  4. So far our 15 month old daughter wants me more, which clearly upsets her dad. I completely understand where he’s coming from and I know it doesn’t help that he works and she spends all day with me. I’m sure this will all change at one point and she’ll only want her daddy 😉
    Emma’s Mamma recently posted…Emma and the catMy Profile

    1. It is tough when they show a preference in that way but you are so right that it goes through stages, that is why I wrote my last post on how to deal with the hurtful things kids say/do. For a lot of kids, as they get older the person they see less of becomes needed and they find ways of expressing that which can sound like something else. Thanks for commenting and sharing your families experiences.

  5. Such wise words and so well written!
    I think this is really prudent for mums to read, I often have guilt in seeing family because my children literally desert me! I do appreciate the break but at the same time feel like soon they won’t want to see us anyone more for being exhausted!! That would never happen but I do wish I saw them and actually talked to them like I used to – at times.
    Natalie x
    Natalie recently posted…Patio PaintingMy Profile

    1. Hi Natalie. This is quite a contradiction that many of us as mothers have to deal with. We have a real pleasure at our children having these relationships but we also feel a loss ourselves. One mother I interviewed for my book explained that all the interest was on her son and she felt unimportant. A sustained conversation is so hard to get with children about isn’t it? Thank you so much for commenting and sharing your feelings.

  6. My life changed the day I had my first child, a son. Now I have 3 adult children and the love I felt on that very first day, I still have today. It’s a bond that will never be broken. I now carry that bond over into my grandchildren that I’ve been so lucky to be blessed with. They have given me 7 beautiful creatures. The love you feel for your child will grow, and intensify with grandchildren. They are the beauty of the world. #myfavouritepost
    Tina Marie recently posted…Southern Style Biscuits and GravyMy Profile

    1. Hi Tina. I felt really uplifted reading your comment. You are so eloquent in describing that feeling. I love your words ‘They are the beauty of the world’. for me that describes so much of how I feel. Thank you very much for that. I am so glad to hear about your grandchildren. My boys are still young but it sounds wonderful.

  7. Lovely post and very true. We’re very lucky to have our parents nearby so both children spend lots of time with them and we make sure we visit long distant relatives every year. It’s definitely tough when you’re not flavour of the week but they always come back round and those cuddles are amazing 🙂 #Mummy&Us

    1. You are so right. It is great to have them come back. But watching those bonds form too is lovely. Mine get so excited when they go to Grandmas and I think it is wonderful.

  8. As ever I love reading your posts, I have consciously distanced myself from destructive relationships since having Monkey, he is more important than another thing in the world to us. Destructive relationships ended up having a negative effect on him in one way or another. One of my NCT mums had a real issue with his boisterous nature and even called him a bully to my face – he was 18 months old…needless to say we don’t see them anymore. Although it did take me a while to sever all the links. Thank you as always. #TwinklyTuesdays
    Mudpie Fridays recently posted…Appealing Rabbit Alphabet CardsMy Profile

    1. Hi Clare, It is important to protect ourselves and our children. There is no issues in taking constructive criticism but there is a problem with having people around us that don’t value who we are as people and who our children are. Distancing yourself under these circumstances is a great thing to do. I am glad you felt strong enough to move away from some one who was not a good energy in your life. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

  9. I love this. I’ve never really thought about the two sides to your children bonding with others (I’m not a parent). I’ve never considered that it can upset parents when their child wants to go to someone else. I do think its good for children to have as many trusted adults in their lives as possible so they always have someone to turn to. Thanks for linking up to #AnythingGoes
    Random Musings recently posted…Guest Post: What Being Published Means To Me by Janet CooperMy Profile

    1. Thanks for hosting your linky and commenting. There are a lot of quite contradictory emotions that come with being a parent. Overall most of us really like it and want our kids to have those relationships but it is also important to note that it is quite normal to have some challenges with it. I think it is so great to have other trusted adults in our kids lives no matter who they are.

  10. Amazing how children change the fabric of our lives. And as amazing as that is, even more amazing to me has been seeing the addition of grandchildren in my life. They have added so much, and made the relationship with my children (their parents) deeper and richer than I would have thought possible. I think of the grands as the glue that binds us all.

    Lovely post and thoughts, and so very true.
    cathy recently posted…life, washed down with cherry garciaMy Profile

    1. Wow Cathy. your comment really toughed me. Your words are so poignant. ‘children change the fabric of our lives’ is so true. I am really heartened to hear about that relationship with your own children deepening with the advent of grandchildren. It is certainly my experience. Having children helped me understand more about myself, life in general and what my parents gave to me. All of that helped our relationship to mature. Thanks for you very eloquent comment.

  11. This is a lovely post – it is so hard to describe the love we feel for our children, it’s so awesome and overwhelming but then when you to try and pin it down it slips through our fingers and the words are never adequate…

    1. Hi Anita. I wrote a post on this the difficulty in describing the love a while back. It is under the ‘Love’ tag on my website. You are so right words fall short of describing how we feel about our children. Thanks for commenting. I have signed up to your newsletter.

  12. I agree – shared love has to be one of my favourite things about being a parent – seeing the love blossom between our daughter and grandparents, for example, or her favourite cousin. Just beautiful and makes all the tough days so worth it #sharewithme

    1. Hi Talya. That is lovely to hear. It is truly so special to watch them develop those ties. Thanks for commenting.

  13. We live in another country than the rest of our family. Our daughter, to the least, is spoiled rotten by them. I think, out of everyone, my father has changed the most. Before he was just some middle aged guy trying to figure out how to get out of mid-life crisis. But since having my daughter, he’s settled down, been promoted, moved out of his condo and into a home with his fiancee and does whatever he can to help us support her. He even makes the most effort to see her. As he either pays for our flights home or comes and visits her here.

    It is so empowering watching his transformation. I am the most proud of him and everything he has had to do to be the Grandfather he knows my daughter deserves. Even if being so far away puts everyone at a disadvantage for a nice, strong bond. #MMWBH

    1. Hi Trisha, That is so great to hear. I have had a number of comments from grandparents talking about how amazing it is to have grandchildren but also how it has developed their relationships with their children even more. It sounds like having a granddaughter has had a profound effect on your Father which is wonderful. Maybe a renewed sense of purpose and connection to you (all guess work). I am very glad for all of you. Thanks so much for commenting and sharing your expereinces.

  14. This is the same reason why I want to go back home to the Philippines. My parents loves my son so much. I can see and feel their love for him. Sadly we need to stay here as my husband is from here. But in here its just the 3 of us. And no one else helps me and loves my son as much as my relatives in my home country. #sharewithme
    Merlinda Little (@pixiedusk) recently posted…Picky picky!My Profile

    1. Hi Merlinda, That is really difficult situation to be in. We have friends in the same situation as you. They are here for work but miss the family connections at home, even more so now they have a child. I do feel for you. I hope you get to see your family soon. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thank you Jennt. I am glad you liked it. Thanks for commenting and hosting your great linky #sharewithme.

    1. This is wonderful to hear. That shared love brings us closer together as a family. I know for myself it made me appreciate my parents more and understand their choices. Thanks for commenting Samantha.

    1. Thanks Meredith. It is great to watch that bond and feel the family being gelled together. Thanks for commenting.

    1. Hi Kaz, It is wonderful to know our children are surrounded by love. It doesn’t matter where the love comes from. Children take in what surrounds them and internalise the way they are treated. Thanks for commenting.

  15. I think having children does make us look at the not so positive relationships in our lives differently. Some drain us of energy that could go into our families, so it’s worth keeping some people at arms length. Thanks for linking up with #MyFavouritePost
    Zena’s Suitcase recently posted…Eleven ThingsMy Profile

    1. I agree Zena. It seems to me that many of as as carers begin to really question things more and even value ourselves in a way that we did not before we had children. Your point about energy is interesting. We do have to get much more choosey about what we spend our energy on as there is only so much to go around. Thanks for your thought provoking comment.

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