Parenting under pressure

Many parents feel like they struggle to keep pace with the rapidly changing world in which they are trying to raise children.

Many are worried about how safe the world today is for their children.

Many parents feel that childhood is shrinking and that children are growing up too fast in today’s society.

Many feel they are struggling on a number of fronts to meet the competing demands of work and parenting.

Many feel under pressure to not fail their children. They struggle to find the time to spend with their children, even though they recognise the importance of doing so.

Many feel isolated and alone, cut off from the important support of families and friends.

The challenges and pressures facing parents today are significant and the cause of much concern and, at times, overwhelming stress.

You are not alone. Many parents feel exactly the same way as you do.

Stress is a normal part of parenting. Small amounts of stress are healthy and can help us to focus and get things done. Too much stress can be overwhelming and result in feelings of helplessness, fear and frustration.

No parent is perfect. We do not always respond to our children in the best possible way. The important thing is to recognise when we are feeling overwhelmed and do something about it.

Looking after yourself helps you look after your child

Look after yourself. Don’t always put everyone else first.

Do things that help you to relax. Listen to music, read a book, go for a walk. Even if it is only for ten minutes.

Reflect on where your stress and feelings of being overwhelmed are coming from and identify small, achievable steps to address the causes.

Try to be organised. Establish routines for yourself and your child and stick to them.

Reflect on what really is really important to you and your family and try to prioritise these things.

Give yourself permission to not be perfect.

Avoid taking your frustrations and stress out on your child. We have all had times when we have done or said things to our children that go against our better judgement. It’s ok to apologise to children and admit you were wrong.

Try to make some special time for yourself and your family.

Talk to your partner, family or friends about your concerns and worries. Sharing the experiences can help you feel less alone.