A parent sent this to me as a potential post on social media that she wasn’t completely comfortable posting. I told her that her message was important and that many of our parents feel this way, so I am posting it here completely unedited, so this parent’s voice can be heard and those of you with similar feelings don’t feel so alone in them.
“I have had some really interesting conversations with many parents this week. I hope I don’t get criticized for what I am about to write but I have to post this because I know there are a lot of parents suffering right now and feeling helpless.
I want to say that we are all in this together and when we feel separate, we feel isolated, lonely, angry and sad. I want to ask one question:
What is it we value?
Culture tells us it’s the college our kids get into and the grades they get on their report cards. They are constantly being evaluated by how well they memorize and take tests. Everyone starts asking when your kid is a senior in highschool what college your kid is going to and then we as parents shine when we say the “good” ones or feel a little deflated when we say a junior college because our kids aren’t ready to take that step. We think our children’s failures or accomplishments are ours to own like a badge or scarlet letter. So again I ask: what do you value? What is success or failure? Who or what gets to define that?
Here’s what I see: my successes and failures had nothing to do with my parents. Neither one of my parents was spiritual or did Yoga. In fact neither one of them was interested in anything I am interested in and when I failed it had nothing to do with them and when I succeeded it had everything to do with me.
Our children are their own beings who are learning how to navigate this world and all it’s systems just like us! My job is to be there for them with support and love not constant judgement and comparison to what everyone else is doing. I value consciousness, acceptance and love. I value being able to move through times when they are tough and learn and grow from all of it.
If your struggling and your child is suffering right now you are supported and loved and I see you. There is no shame or blame in any of that and you are not alone. Let’s all try to be a little more conscious of what is really happening with our youth. What I see is a huge incline in anxiety, depression and low self esteem. Let’s come together and help these beautiful people feel supported and accepted.
I appreciate all the people and parents who share with me their struggles. I see your pain and vulnerability and I know this is what is real and part of our reality. Can we all just take a moment and look at why this is our reality. Let’s try to find a little more compassion instead of competition and see that one size doesn’t fit all and I bet a lot of our youth have so much to offer if we could just get out of these confining labels and boxes society puts them in. If your child is thriving in the system this may be hard for you to understand or see. Just understand that it’s out there and happening on a large scale and just be aware. Finding love and support is something we can all do!”