Here is another great one for parents and caregivers of young kids! As parents, it is easy to fall into a default mode of worrying about our kids. I’ve viewed worrying about Sonny as a form of protection. If I worry then it means I am being attentive of what is going on around him, therefore protecting him. I am so glad that I got connected with Einat Nathan as she opened my eyes to a new perspective about this.
Einat is the author of the#1 international best selling book, My Everything Book. The book is “an exploration of the complex emotional journey of being a parent.” In addition to being an author, she is a public speaker and is certified by the Adler Institute and the Ministry of Education for Parental Instruction and Group Instruction. Einat has a Bachelor’s degree in law from Tel Aviv University. She currently still lives in Tel Aviv with her husband and five children.
These words were so refreshing to read – I hope you find them helpful!
Stop Worrying About Your Kids by Einat Nathan
What do we as parents want for our children? That they be healthy, happy, successful and most importantly: that they don’t get their hearts broken.
That they don’t experience loneliness, shame, painful failures, hardships, that they don’t get hurt, that their path is an easy one. Because when someone breaks our child’s heart – they also break our hearts.
The problem is that when our heart breaks for our child, we are no longer there for her. We mistakenly think that the fact that our heart gets broken puts us in a more caring, empathetic place. We’re certain that breaking our hearts for them means we are better parents, because what kind of parent could stand on the side see his child hurting and not break?
But a parent’s broken heart, even if that parent says nothing and just looks at you, is one of the most burdensome things a child can experience. Because in a situation like that, the distribution of roles changes a little – there is no longer one who helps and one who gets helped, but two broken individuals.
Our heartbreak will never actually serve us. When we fall into the pit with them, we can no longer stand outside it and throw them a rope. We have to understand that it weighs down on them, that it has no value, that we can’t really afford to be wounded when their hearts are bleeding.
Because a child whom you pity learns to pity himself, and a child who worries us learns to worry about himself, and a child who breaks our hearts will think twice before telling us about his pains.
We have to try and find all the reasons in the world to show strength and confidence, to look at our child’s hardship and her broken heart with an empathetic smile that expresses that we totally understand the pit she has fallen into – the pain, the insult or the shame – but that we’re not really worried. And when another wound comes along, and with it another pit he needs to pull himself out of, we’ll be there, right outside, available for his broken heart.
It’s their heart that’s broken – not ours.
Happy Family Day!