As a parent, I try to be mindful of what I expose my children to. They’re young and observant. They observe everything whether I want them to or not or I think they’re paying attention or not. One of the things I feel is important to expose them to is my struggles. I’ve grown into a very positive person over the past four years but that doesn’t mean life is smooth sailing. I have bad days, hard times, and unexpected situations. While I want to teach my girls how to look on the bright side, reframe their perspective, and the power of their thoughts, I also want to teach them resilience, strength, and the importance of good decision-making skills.
To teach them these things, I think the best way is to show them. While some things are resolved behind closed doors, I don’t let them think I have it all together, that I’m perfect in any way, or that I don’t have to work to overcome things. I let them see me work through things and talk to them about it. I open up the conversation for my oldest to ask questions. She also feels more comfortable, safe, and reassured. She knows that I’m always looking out for the best interest of our family.
While on the one hand, I want her to think of me as this strong woman that has it all together, on the other hand, I don’t want to put that kind of pressure on her. I don’t want her to think she has to be everything to everyone, do everything perfectly or on her own. I’ve become the person I have by overcoming obstacles, getting up after I get knocked down, learning my lessons, following my heart, seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, and persevering through it all. It’s not the struggle itself that I want her to focus on but the way I handle it and the tools I use.
So while it might better serve my ego to only let her see the good, it’s a disservice to her. I’ll keep letting her see me work my way through the challenges life throws me. I’ll continue to talk to her openly. I’ll allow her to see me fall and watch me soar. I’ll let her see the effort, time and energy I put into building a business and writing a book. I’ll let her observe the process of healing my relationship with money. I continue to show her how I strive to be a better version of myself every day. I’ll show her the importance of tending to yourself so you can better serve others. I’ll teach her as I go through it because one day she’ll be a young woman. She’ll remember my struggles and strengths and know that she’s not alone.
What are your thoughts on this post? Do you let your kids see how you handle your struggles? Do you think it’s important to let them see it? Feel free to share in the comments!