Of course, I felt for them. It was not that I wanted other mums to suffer in any way but in that moment, I really felt a weight lift. In those times I knew, I mean really knew, that it was not just me that would struggle to peel my screaming child off the floor.
But it is not only about the toddler years either. Finding out we are not the only one with challenges at any stage can be a relief. A nine year old hopefully won’t be on the floor throwing a tantrum (hopefully!) but there will be other things to deal with. Seeing or hearing about others struggles helps give us a perspective on our own issues and stops us from feeling so isolated.Others struggles helps give us a perspective on our own issues and stops us from feeling isolated. Click To Tweet
And let’s be honest here. I know it is not just me.
So why do we feel such relief at times like this?
1. Raising children used to be done by communities…
and extended families, of course. Everyone one would watch out for the younger members. Whereas, now we are really separated by our affluence. We have our own homes, our own jobs and lives to lead. Whilst there are many upsides to this there are also some downsides, one of which is that we don’t grow up seeing the reality of being with young children.
2. It is easy to believe other parents have it sorted
Because we raise our kids on our own more than we used to it is easier to get the idea that other mothers have it all together when we don’t. The thing is that we can all look our best and put on a show for a two hour baby and toddler group but it is only when we see someone for longer periods of time that we see their reality.
3. It is easy to feel we ‘Should’ be doing it better
There is so many tips and tricks out there on how to mange children that it is easy to feel that we ‘should’ be doing better. When our little ones are laying on the floor screaming we can think that we should be able to pull some technique out of the bag to sort it. The truth is that some things have to be gone through. Children all have their phases of development. Intervening in a tantrum is often not ideal. Likewise when our 7 year old is misbehaving at school we can feel that we should be able to stop it right away. Often though dealing with these issues takes time and there is not an over night fix. I go into this more in my post 5 Tips for Repeated Problems With your Children.
4. The difference between understanding and really knowing
There is a difference between understanding something and really knowing it. We all know that other children can be challenging for their parents but when it is right there in front of us we can really understand that it is not just us.There is a difference between understanding something and really knowing it Click To Tweet
So my suggestion is that next time you feel that relief or even a twinge of pleasure (mixed with compassion too of course) don’t feel bad. Acknowledge that it is comforting for us all to realise we are not alone. And just know that you will more than likely be providing someone with that same feeling of relief soon enough.
Have you ever felt relief or a twinge of pleasure seeing a friend struggling with a difficult child? What was happening that provoked this feeling? Did you feel bad afterwards or was it okay? I would love to hear about your experiences. I reply to every comment.
So what is next?
If you liked this article then you may also like:
- The Natural Losses Of Motherhood
- After The Birth Of Baby Number Two – The Biggest Surprise
- What Do You Do? I am A Mother
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