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Home Alone – The Guilt Of Being A Parent

22nd February 2021

Schools prepare to reopen

With schools looking like they will be reopening again soon parents find themselves experiencing a range of emotions as they prepare to hand their loved ones back into the capable hands of their teachers.

Relief seems to be the mood experienced by many mums and dads as they count the days off until they hand the baton back to the teachers. This is understandable considering the unfamiliar challenges that online and home schooling brings. However this welcome relief seems to be triggering an unjustified feeling of guilt that they are feeling this way in the first place.

Now is not the time for self judgment

Parents find themselves thinking, what sort of parent am I that I am looking forward to my child leaving the safety and security of their home to return to mixing with children where they may be at a greater risk of catching covid.

If you are one of these parents please stop being so hard on yourself. It’s ok if you feel this way. It does not make you a bad parent or a terrible human being. This situation was forced upon you in the most unusual of circumstances and you simply responded by doing the best you could to adapt to it.

You may not have adjusted to this new routine perfectly but neither did any other parent. Judging yourself for not being the perfect teacher is grossly unfair and feeling relief that the professionals will be taking over once more is a completely normal response. Instead of self judgment you deserve a pat on the back for doing the best that you could to step up and rise to a challenge that you didn’t ask for and were not prepared for.

School is the best place for your children

Not to mention the benefits that your children will experience when they are back at school learning from qualified teachers and socialising with their friends again. There is no question that the physical and emotional wellbeing of your child will be enhanced significantly as a result of their return to school.

Perhaps instead you might focus your attention on an appreciation for the wonderful job that our teachers do. You might now even find yourself having a new found respect and admiration for teachers.

Khody Damestani, co-founder of mental fitness company, Mymindpal reinforces this message for parents out there.

“If you are a parent now is not the time for self judgment. Congratulate yourself for having coped with the challenges of supervising and teaching your children the best you could. Show yourself kindness and compassion as this phase comes to an end and embrace the opportunity for your children to go back to school where the qualified teachers will do what they have been trained to do”.

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