Towards the end of the Crafting a Narrative podcast where Bethany McLean responds to questions by Shane Parrish parenting . She made this statement “It is freeing for children to see parents struggle with things and fail” and then goes on to explain the importance of showing children that you struggle and fail at things. The worst thing which a parent can do for their child is to setup this unattainably perfect image of their life and then when the child struggles and sees that they are not as good as their parents. It makes then feel inferior but the truth is that all of us struggle and fail at things so you gotta keep the communication real. She talks about how her dad a doctor would talk about the stress and anxiety that he would have when going for an important surgery.
This short excerpt of podcast reminded me of my childhood and being exposed to the troubles that my parents faced. They never made any attempt at hiding those challenges from us. It showed us challenges that they faced and how almost always something unexpected would happen to make things better. We were never shielded from the challenges and I credit a lot of my optimism in life to those exposures.
I know many parents who want to show only the positive side of what is happening in their life. They feel that they will be a bad parent by showing that they are not successful or that they struggle at certain things. Or they want to hide the troubles which they face in their life from kids thinking that they are being protective. This sort of effort in cushioning the kids away from the reality of life makes it harder for the child when they go out and face the real world. Also seeing a perfect benchmark in life they may think that they are inferior. In summary talk about the challenges that you have with your children , it is liberating for them.
Don’t pretend to be perfect parent show that you are human too…