It’s been a minute. Back at work and adjusting to a new routine so life has been truly hectic.
I took my son Isaiah to his football club, the coach asked them to get into groups of three and he was struggling to fit in. My heart sunk. I wanted to walk over there and just help him find friends. Isaiah is usually quick to make friends with children his age group but this was his first lesson and I felt like he was thrown in the big blue sea (or am I making excuses?). Now I know he’s only 5, but watching him trying to fit in and find a group was hard to swallow. I had to walk way and stop myself from stepping in.
It got me thinking am I wrapping him in cotton wool? I am the parent that swoops in whenever I see my children in emotional distress or discomfort. One of my biggest priority is my children’s emotional well-being. I don’t want them to ever feel unloved. At times, it can be really difficult to be around him in social settings.
Yes as parents it’s our job to protect our children. Food for thought: Protection meets children needs, overprotecting meets our needs. Knowing when not to cross that line is a constant battle. When do I back off? When do I step in? When should I comfort? When should I give tough love?
Deep down, I am fully aware of the impact of over protecting my children. I am fully aware he needs to experience knock backs, so he can become resilient. And in the world we live in, if ya can’t take the heat ya better get outta the kitchen. It’s a tough world and I don’t want to rob my children off the chance to be independent adults. I won’t be there to protect them always, and I know as a parent it’s my job to prepare them for the ‘real world’.
So I have challenged myself to loosen the leash and expose him. I am taking these steps to become a better parent:
- Avoid too much praise: No more lying that the drawing looks just like mummy (too far?).
- Give him space: Eventually he got into a group and had an awesome footy session.
- I will make the conscience effort to allow them to fall and get up on their own.
Are you wrapping your children in cotton wool? Share your thoughts.