Jul 13, 2009

Mommies coping with stress (part 6-I'm a fantastic mother! Am I?)

Before we have our own children, we have this idea that when our time comes, we’ll try to be the best parent that has ever raised a child.

Mums-to-be can sometimes harshly judge other mothers when we see them battling with a toddler having a meltdown in the supermarket or at the park, thinking: 'That won’t happen to me.’ Our expectations are even higher if we’ve enjoyed success in our career and know what it’s like to set goals and achieve them.

Then along comes baby. Although in the first few weeks most of us feel blessed to be coping with a newborn who only sleeps and feeds, soon there’s more to it. It’s at this point that we realise the antenatal classes and the pregnancy guides did not quite prepare us for the feeling of being so out of control. We madly scramble to find out the answers – from books, from friends, our mums and the internet. Often we end up more confused than before we started.

Great expectations? So what do most mums do when they feel out of control? They attempt to regain control. They try harder to establish routines and run a tight ship. Mothers of newborns can be very controlling when it comes to the dads or grandparents caring for the baby.

Everything is done for the purpose of having a happy, healthy child, but it feels as if there is very little room for error. As a result, their expectations start to become increasingly unrealistic, while the fear of failing becomes stronger.

Learning to let go? Instead of trying to gain greater control of the situation, the answer often lies in relinquishing control and challenging the whole idea of trying to be a supermum.

Each child is different and, no matter how hard you try, it will simply take time to discover what your baby needs and when. Giving yourself a break by allowing your partner or your parents to do things their way is an excellent way to relieve the unnecessary pressure you could be putting on yourself.

Banish self-doubt? Some mums find the supermum complex only comes into play when their children start school. They hear about other kids doing extra reading, swimming well or already having mastered the piano, and the self-doubt starts creeping in. Should I be doing more to help my child? Am I being the best mum I can be?

So we look into organising music lessons, contemplate an intensive swimming class, buy extra workbooks to hurry along comprehension skills or play a CD with the times tables sung brightly in the car to aid maths skills. But all that happens is we feel more overwhelmed and stressed. Mums need to work things out at their own pace so they can enjoy the experience.

Furthermore, stop competing with other moms on who can be the better mom (including our own mom and mom in law)...or else we might end up being the MEAN MOM!! We just provide what we can to our loved ones and never to compare.

I read that positive parenting might help in putting stop to unrealistic pressure on yourself.

* Be flexible. The more relaxed you are about how quickly things change, the easier it will be to cope.

* Make some ‘me time’. Spending every moment working in or around the home will not lower your stress. Taking time out is good for you and, ultimately, your children. Try taking a soak in the tub whenever you can or even a 10-15mins hot shower will help.

* Are they happy and healthy? How well they talk or how quickly they learn to read has no bearing on their contentment and wellbeing.

* Every mum is different. Peer pressure among mothers can be fierce. Resist the urge to follow everyone else – do it your way.

* Reminisce. Think about how you were brought up. What did you benefit from and what would you do differently? Also ask your partner for their memories.

* Learn from mistakes. You will make them. Instead of feeling guilty, use errors to work out how to tackle things another way.

* Forget trying to do it all - you'll be a better parent if you're relaxed and happy.

Also you can find cool tips & trick in managing mommy chaos at this website:



Hanz said...

LOve those tips.Simple yet can be workable.Try to bear those in mind.Thanks!

Ely Hasrul said...

i kena belaja kemas umah sambil menjaga anak sbb umah sepah hahahahahhaha.. sami dh pandai sebut mami & papi.. even if tunjuk tanya sapa tu.. dia akan respon mami or papi..TAPI xpenah dia panggil i mami lagik and dia slalu ingtkn i yg tetek i nih susu

sami: thuthu.. sambil pointing at my breast

mami: nak?

sami: tanak ..sambil geleng kepala

mami: ok tengkiu for telling mami this is susu


yatie chomeyl said...

betul2x,,,i setuju..sblm jd mommy, i selalu heran kenapa lah mak tu xleh marah anak dia bila budak tu menangis melalak..bingit i dengar <-- persepsi masa bujang & sblm dpt anak

bila dh ada baby sendiri baru tau yang each mom has her own way on how to take care of their child sebabnya only mums know the best approach on how to treat their babies kan?

5577 said...

find this article very good.. n true!
i've been taking care of my sis n my niece's since in primary.. my sis was only born when i was std 6, so kinda know the out of controlness we can get into.. especially masa kena bwk 3 of them ke pdg at the same time..
yupp.. very true we shudnt compare.. we have different capabilities as well as the child..
thx mama-miya..

very true.. we shud be relax and enjoy every phase of it.. while it last kan?

aah, yatie chomeyl.. sgt stuju ngan statement u..

jay said...

salam perkanalan jgk..mm.jauh nye kt aussie sane..mesti syok..xpenah lg p oversea nih..

nadnye said...

Best article nie.. yea kekadang susah nak jadi the best mom.. seems like everything we do is not perfect for them...and every child is difference...
we just have to relax and learn from experience and other mom's too

Lucy said...

Excellent tips. Thanks for sharing it..

Stress management has always been a challenge for me. I have three kids and a career, and I was feeling really overwhelmed. I found a similar resource which helped me to manage stress in a well structured way. Every working mom should check this out.

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Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor nor am I a lawyer. I am not a scientist nor am I an expert. I am just a wife and a mother, who is putting her thoughts and findings in a blog. All of the posting on this website & my blogs were written by me for educational purposes and as my sentimental library, but are not meant to diagnose nor treat any medical disorders. Any other materials that I may have quote from other published materials are for educational purposes only and not for any other manipulative reasons. Anyway, whatever weird stuff that I published are the real stuff that I believe works for me. Tips and tricks that might work for me. You are free to put it in your head if you thinks its valuable, but if you think its rubbish... Please don't mock me. Do please shut your pie hole.
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