Weekends are the worst! That’s when my traumatized child acts out the most. My guess is that it’s the lack of structure on the weekends that causes the meltdowns. Predictability (as in schedules and routines) helps a child feel safe in the world. And weekends aren’t always the same and can be quite unpredictable.
Parenting a traumatized child isn’t easy. It’s parenting turned inside out. As a “trauma mama,” I parent a lot differently than I ever thought parents should. Because my traumatized child needs to know that I will meet his needs (which are “wants” many times), I say “yes” to my child as much as possible. It’s about building trust – a trust he didn’t experience in his early life. This helpless baby never knew when he was going to be fed, and he needs to learn that he can trust his parents to meet his needs.
But like anything in parenting, I don’t know if I’m doing this trauma parenting right. I feel I’m walking this fine-line tightrope trying to balance meeting the needs of my traumatized child so that he knows he can fully rely on me and trust me. But contrasting that trust, is that I worry that I am being too permissive as a parent so that my child won’t have boundaries in his relationships and will constantly push others to meet his “needs/wants” and become “entitled”.
Because of the high potential for meltdowns on the weekends, I can be quite permissive and allow my child to get away with so much more — just to reduce the stress of meltdowns in our home.
But then Monday comes, and I wonder “Was I a good parent this weekend?” “Did I give in too much?” “Am I spoiling my child?” On Monday, I’m full of self-doubt in my parenting abilities. But I’ve got to stop judging myself against the impossible standard of being the “perfect” parent.
I’m happy to be partnering with Similac to end judgment (even against ourselves) and unite to support other parents. Especially on Monday, after a weekend of loosening the rules to just make it through. I can’t be the only parent…am I?
“So, I let him cry it out. For 15 minutes. In the middle of the playground. Don’t judge me. (And I won’t judge…” Posted on Similac US Facebook page