Over time I have learned to see the two faces of practically every situation I go through in my life: the good and the bad side. Guilt is a feeling that is not exempted from this categorization either, because although it is hateful, it generates anguish and unease, it also helps us to reflect : today I want to play the “devil’s advocate” and talk about a small positive part that contains guilt.
Guilt, that constant companion of motherhood
Raising my daughters, without a doubt, is the greatest responsibility I will take on in my entire life. Everything that houses his head and his heart, at least during these first years, will be the fruit of our experiences and the way in which he guides them. Is someone, with all the awareness that is required, really prepared to take on a company of such magnitude?
“Children should come with a manual under their arm,” I hear sometimes. But even so, if it existed, would we listen to it? Probably not. It is day to day, interacting and seeing ourselves reflected in another person in such an amazing way, that shapes us as parents.
Nobody, no matter how much training in positive discipline, positive parenting, psychology or a thousand other sciences that have to do with this, is exempt from making mistakes when raising a child. In our actions we carry years of experiences -good and bad-, excesses and deficiencies and that ends up being reflected in the people that we are and in our way of proceeding with others, and especially with our children.
The two faces of guilt
I think that the custom of blaming the mother for everything that happens to the children has been abused (sorry, I cannot be inclusive in this sense because if your child “catches cold”, the inquisitive look of the grandmother nails directly on you and not on the father, for example), so I agree that there is a lot to work on how we manage this feeling.
Of course I don’t like feeling guilty , because since I was a mother I have perceived it in a way that was previously unknown to me. Can you feel guilty for feeling guilty? It seems illogical, but yes, sometimes we can go to those extremes.
But as I said at the beginning, guilt has another side : that which, after making us feel terrible, invites us to reflect and try to be better parents. We are not perfect, and many times an inner voice tells us when we have made a mistake … and that voice probably becomes louder when that mistake has had your child as a counterpart.
As they say out there, the first step is to recognize it, and it does not cost me anything to do so. I believe that humility is a very necessary value in parenting , and admitting to our children that we have been wrong teaches more than punishment or silence.
If you feel guilty after being unfair to your child, don’t worry, don’t be overwhelmed, and don’t be so hard on yourself. In this case, guilt is a sign that you are on the right path to being the parent you really want to be.
In Babies and More | Educating a child is all we do when we are not educating him
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