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Parenting: It is About Being Good Enough

written by Liz Matheis, Ph.D December 4, 2020
Parenting: It is About Being Good Enough

Parenting is the most difficult job I have ever had. It’s also the most rewarding.

Parenting is challenging and exhausting. As parents, we place a high level of pressure on ourselves to be present, to be aware of every detail of our children’s lives, and to ensure our children’s happiness on a daily basis. We feel guilty. We aim to make our time spent with our children fun and magical.

As a parent, you just need to be good enough.

You Don’t Need to Be All-Knowing

As parents, we often feel we need to use each moment to teach a life lesson. We need to be the “all-knowing” parent who has the answers and can fix things. We don’t want to make errors in front of our children and many of us struggle to admit when we’ve messed up.

It’s ok to make mistakes. In fact, your children will learn more by watching you make a mistake and learn from how you choose to handle it. For example, when you call up a friend and work through a disagreement or admit to making an error and apologizing. It’s a wonderful thing for your child to watch you work through your error with grace and not self-denigration (e.g., “I’m so stupid!”). Allow your children to internalize your gentle and forgiving voice and messages that you say to yourself that will ultimately become their own words and messages that they tell themselves.

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