What a Mental Responsibility

What a Mental Responsibility
As parents the biggest thing to give you a brown trousers moment is bringing that bundle home and thinking holy moly this thing has ME for a mother. I have a crazy big responsibility here. It’s huge, it’s lifelong and it’s blooming scary. 

Looking knackered the morning after having her

To me the scariest part of it all is ensuring my parenting does not result in some serious issues for my girl in later life. Making my gremlin eat healthy, be polite, do her homework, be good etc. These don’t bother me at all. It’s something I’ll have a good go at and just hope she doesn’t turn out a swearing, loud mouthed lout (like me!). No, I’m more bothered about if me or my actions sit with her in a negative way, affecting her mental health in her future years. The Mental Health Foundation say 1 in 4 of us will have some form of mental health issue in the course of a year. That’s a lot of us. Obviously this isn’t all going to be due to external factors but of course a lot of times it will be.

In my job I see a lot of people, some with mental health problems and many times when I dig a bit and they confide me in, issues with their parents or childhood arise. They didn’t feel supported, loved, listened too or taken seriously, there was some violence, the list goes on. And for them to bring this up in front of me, their dietitian, often a stranger to them, suggests it must mean a lot to them and it’s obviously still affecting them now. This terrifies me!
How can ensure I don’t make the same mistakes? If I snap at hubby or vice versa I’ll have a wave of panic; what if our gremlin is taking all this in? Obviously I love her to death and tell her always; I was lucky my family are very good at saying I love you so it’s easy. But what if love isn’t always enough? I’m paranoid that I’m listening to her. If I’m messing on my phone and she potters over with a request, I’ll throw it away and give her my undivided. I’m trying really hard to keep my control if she’s naughty or letting her leave food rather than worrying or shouting. She is already a little person, with thoughts, opinions and wishes and within reason I’m already trying to respect that whilst giving her the security that I’m always there.

I hope we are close like me and my Mum and I’m determined to love her, listen to her and support her as best I can. I’m sure all little ones want is to feel safe, have a good routine and fabulous playmates in their parents. I want her to feel loved, secure, safe, confident in herself and ready to face the world when the time come. I love being able to say my childhood was lovely. I felt loved and despite my parents divorcing, all was not grey. I’m hoping I can meet all that and give my gremlin the best start in life too.

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32 Comments

  1. May 5, 2015 / 5:48 am

    I can really empathise with this, I worry all the time that the things we're doing affect little A! My parents argued alot when we were young and I remember hating it. Though we are so close now because I know they had issues but they really love me and I think that's the ultimate thing our children need. Life is hard but hopefully as long as they have our unfaltering love, they'll be fine. #TwinklyTuesday

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 7:06 am

      Thanks hun. It's horrible to think about.Sorry your parents argued a lot. Mine did too. I think love is the biggest part of it all but other things count too. Thanks for your lovely comment though xx

  2. May 5, 2015 / 7:24 am

    The fact that you are nervous already shows that you are a thoughtful and loving mum, you will be fab! Love Mackenzie xx #Twinkly Tuesday

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 5:33 pm

      Thanks for such a lovely comment s

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 5:33 pm

      No you are so right. It's just a parent thing I'm sure xx

  3. May 5, 2015 / 8:39 am

    I think being that being aware of our flaws and being determined not to repeat history, or make too many silly mistakes, is half the battle won lovely x

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 5:33 pm

      Thanks so much hun..lovely comment x

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 5:33 pm

      I bet you will be little cutie x

  4. May 5, 2015 / 11:10 am

    Worry is definitely part of being a mommy. We are all human and are going to make mistakes but when you are determined to love, listen and support her then you can't go wrong xx #TwinklyTuesday

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 5:34 pm

      I hope I can do just that Becky, thanks!! x

  5. May 5, 2015 / 3:49 pm

    It is a huge responsibility isn't it and something I worry about too. I think the fact that we worry about it and try to be as good a parent as we can be says a lot though – you sound like you are doing a great job to me πŸ™‚

    • mm May 5, 2015 / 5:34 pm

      Thanks Louise. Worrying is part of the job I'm sure πŸ™‚ x

  6. May 5, 2015 / 6:57 pm

    The feeling of responsibility is enormous and it's probably overwhelmed us all at some point. As long as we are the best parents we can be, that's all we can do. I know I want to be a better mum to my son than she has been to me, and I recognise that every day and make sure I'm doing it differently or better x #twinklytuesday x

    • mm May 6, 2015 / 1:07 pm

      Thanks Jade I think you are right and I bet you are doing a fine job πŸ™‚ x

  7. May 5, 2015 / 7:25 pm

    I often wonder about this Sarah – just how important is every word we speak, every action we take, in front of our children? I see someone close to me – the problems in this person's life seem to stem back to childhood – I know the probable trigger that might have changed one parent's attitude and behaviour and just what a devastating effect that has had in terms of what I consider to be psychological (albeit borderline) issues in adulthood. I am scared I have shouted too much, that my husband and I have argued too loudly in front of the children. I just hope I can behave in the best way possible in front of them from now on because I can see mirrored behaviour and its a slippery slope. Thanks for linking up to #thetruthabout hon X

    • mm May 6, 2015 / 1:08 pm

      Thanks Sam. I can see it too in friends and it is a scary thought. I'm sure you little ones will be fine as everyone has said we are all so aware now and try so hard to be the best. Thanks for the comment and for hosting xx

  8. May 6, 2015 / 4:44 am

    Oh my, this post spoke to me. I was one of those people deeply scarred by my parents' choices, and I have (very well managed, but chronic) clinical depression. I spent a full year in therapy before getting pregnant to try to be as emotionally and mentally fit as I could be. The most precious gift I've ever been given, I received just a few days ago. One of my nearly-9-year-olds said, "I think your mom's mistakes make you a better mommy." My daughters still feel safe confiding in me and say I'm predictable, safe and snuggly. So, so far, so good, I think.

    I honestly think it's the parents who don't worry about the long-term impacts of the behaviours that really scar their children. The fact that you worry about it is probably proof in itself that you won't do anything to harm your little one's mental health in years to come.

    Thank you for linking up at #TwinklyTuesday

    • mm May 6, 2015 / 1:09 pm

      Thanks Sadia. So sorry to hear about your childhood and glad you are coping now. How amazing what you did before getting pregnant. A lot of hard work. Your children sound amazing and so mature! Thanks for the lovely words xx

  9. May 6, 2015 / 6:22 am

    It is all terrifying isn't it! Such small things can make such a difference either day. The fact that you are worried, I think, shows that you will do an awesome job xx

    • mm May 6, 2015 / 1:09 pm

      It really is! Thanks though, I really hope so πŸ™‚ x

  10. May 6, 2015 / 1:17 pm

    In my line of work (Counselling) what I see is that people are damaged by feeling that who they are is not okay. So it is not the events themselves but our interpretation of ourselves as lacking that causes problems. When children grow up having their feelings and opinions valued then they value themselves and that helps with everything.
    As mum, well we all worry about that. We want to do what is best and sometimes it is hard to know what that is. Great post. #sharewithme

    • mm May 7, 2015 / 5:58 pm

      Thanks Kirsten for your kind words and sound advice. I will try my best I'm sure. Thanks very much x

  11. May 6, 2015 / 9:51 pm

    Aw you're so fab! And if you ever have a bad day she'll know it how you deal with those emotions that matter xx

    • mm May 7, 2015 / 5:58 pm

      Thanks Charlene! lovely words x

  12. May 6, 2015 / 10:53 pm

    I worry about this all the time. I wonder about what influence my own MH has and how that then will affect them to just my general behaviour. We all want our little treasure to be well rounded and happy and we all try to provide a good level of well being and I think that's all that matters. You're fab and she'll learn more good from that than maybe what we could. I'm sure you'll be as close as you are to your mum. Fab post!

    • mm May 7, 2015 / 6:00 pm

      I can imagine Martyn if you have had a few issues yourself. You sound like a fab Dad however so I wouldn't worry too much πŸ™‚ Thanks so much for your kind words xx

  13. May 7, 2015 / 10:40 am

    I am crying right about now. I .. am of course not diagnosed with mental health problem as I never visited a doctor but there are a lot of days for me when its so dark. I am a foreigner here and I miss home as I havent seen my family for 5 years now. Its so hard to control your emotions everyday. I am successful on most days but some days I am not. On the days that my depression would come I would just cry. I worry about its effect on my son. I am trying my best to beat depression for him. I am trying everyday. #sharewithme

    • mm May 7, 2015 / 6:01 pm

      Aww Merlinda I have just messaged you. I hope you are feeling better. It must be so hard being away from home. Perhaps just homesickness is why you are so sad as well. I'm sure you try so hard. Hugs xx

  14. May 8, 2015 / 8:35 am

    What a beautiful post and I bet you and her will have an even closer bond if that's possible than you and your mother. I think the same I always pray we are super close like me and my mother. I think you look fab right after having her. Lovely photo. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    • mm May 9, 2015 / 6:12 pm

      Thanks Jenni I really hope so! You and your Mum look so close on your holiday pics. Thanks so much and for hosting xx