You’ve had conversations about whether or not you are doing a good job parenting your kids. You wonder if you are doing the right things, and making good decisions. You feel like a failure many times over. You have cried about your children and felt guilty for the choices you have made and the consequences of them.

Me too.

Our fears and insecurities assault our confidence. Fear that the mistakes we make are too big. Fear that our words and actions are too much or too little. Fear that our busy-ness and distracted lifestyle will lead our children to seek out others instead of us. Insecurity over our own childhood and wanting something different for our child. Insecurities in relationships, period.

But we can be confident. Confidence comes from knowledge and experience. Knowledge can be learned. But don’t discount the knowledge you already have regarding your child. Let that information inform you. You most likely have experiences that tell you what works and how to reach your child’s heart. Learn from those.

Lack of confidence brings with it criticism. Don’t beat yourself up too much. You aren’t likely doing everything wrong. Don’t lose sight of the fact that you are doing some things right. But don’t do the opposite either and just focus on those. Find things you need to improve on and then practice doing them better.

You aren’t perfect, no one is. You’ve made your mistakes. Learn from them. No one knows your child better than you do. Not even your child. You know what works best for your child (if you don’t, then find out). Use that knowledge in every arena your child is involved in.
And your child needs to know you are in charge. They want you to be in charge. And believe it or not, research tells us that they want you to set limits and enforce them. They also don’t want you to be their friend. It doesn’t make sense to them. But they do listen to you and value what you say above everyone else.

Take heart my friend. Go find your confidence.


Todd has been a therapist for over 20 years in a variety of settings. An unconventional therapist who tells the truth, Todd has taught undergraduate and graduate level courses, and authored his first book, Simply Relate.

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