Author: Rebecca Knowlden
GUILT. Such a tough word…. and such a powerful feeling. So many parents have it…because they think they’re not doing enough, or doing it right, or doing too much, or the right way, or providing the right activities, etc. The list goes on and on.
Now add a child with autism or other special need and you can really pile yourself up with guilt, right? You’re feeling guilty about not getting enough support or therapies; you’re concerned about medications and friendship issues and educational opportunities. Guilt is just the natural by-product of being a good parent. Right? WRONG!
You must move from a place of guilt, to a place of peace, and an acceptance of the reality that we are doing the best we can.
A few days ago I was facilitating a parent meeting and this issue of guilt came up. Everyone at the meeting was experiencing the feeling, and it was having a dramatic impact on people’s lives. The idea that our guilt causes us to respond in an unhealthy way toward our children is an age old problem. When we react to situations from a position of guilt, we cannot productively parent in a well- designed manner. Well- designed plans allow us to think ahead, and make wise decisions based on rational, healthy feelings.
Ultimately turning around unproductive guilt allows us to become empowered parents. Moving from being concerned about what you are not doing, to what you can do. Moving from reacting, to planning. Moving from being overwhelmed, to successfully tackling one thing at a time.
You can find the solutions, even if it’s just one baby step at a time. But you must lose the guilt.
I challenge you today to push guilt from today’s thought process? What did you do to replace it? :-)