Who is to say that one parent or one family is better than another?
Domestic violence and gambling are on the increase, divorce rates are high. The ongoing pressures of work, providing for your children and paying off debts, scatter our emotions to levels where we as individuals can no longer cope. We stretch ourselves too thinly. Our obligations, or what we think are our obligations become too far out of reach. High expectations of ourselves do not make us better people. They are unobtainable.
Why do we create such unrealistic obligations?
Parenting in today’s society is certainly not the same as it was generations ago. When we parent our children, we often look at how we were parented. Some choose not to be like their own parents and subsequently over parent their children. As a result they look at their own parents when things go wrong as a reference point of blame. It is much simpler for some to redirect the blame back to their parent’s apparent failure to parent them, without knowing they did their best with what they had, no matter what the circumstances were at the time. We forget to take responsibility in how we parent. If we are scattered in our thoughts because of our expectations and obligations, how do you expect to be fully present with your children?
While each person and their families are very different, the pressures are still the same.
So what does the word ‘Family’ mean? Ask yourself is my definition of family vastly different to how my own family is? The sense of family can be very different for us all, and what your sense of family is may not work for another.
For example we may have grown up with very little, so as parents you want your children to never go without. It may also have been that your parents were never there for you emotionally, so you now push your children to be the best they can possibly be. Priorities have shifted in the way we parent. Both parents are possibly working now because they have to, not by choice. We bring work home with us. Having the best house in the street, the latest technology, or fancy car is not going to make you a better parent or a great provider. We have created this unrealistic lifestyle which emotionally disconnects us from ourselves, our relationships with our partner and children. When we emotionally disconnect, we disconnect ourselves from what is truly important – love.
Children are created out of love. Let that love extend to yourself and your family. Limit your obligations outside your family and live within your means. Do not stretch yourself to breaking point and punish your children, for your own lack of emotional stability or not being there for them.
A true family will always have love as its foundations. If you feel that you have lost those foundations, ask yourself again, what does the word ‘family’ mean to you? Only then you will see, by being present in the moment, which you had not lost those foundations it at all.
We are, after all, spiritual beings, having a human experience.