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Old 02-28-2011, 10:30 PM
 
109 posts, read 439,322 times
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So many things I would do differently if I was able. Probably couldn't, even given a second chance.
My mother brought me up trying to shape me into another, more perfect, interesting, glamour, smart person every day. She was not happy with me being a shy, slow-witted, casually dressing and make up ditching teenager. Still I know she loves me more than anybody else and would give her life for me. But the harm is done and I am struggling with the same issues. Never having seen much of another example, I catch myself too often critisizing my chidlren and not enough just loving them. But still, I realize what my weak points are and yes, I would have my babies all over again. Some days they drive me to the edge of insanity, each day they try my patience, but this is a part of being a mother. Without them my life would be totally empty. When I see them smile at me, kiss me and hug me spontaneously, isn't this a reward plenty? Children are not for everyone, but for me they are God's most precious gift. He trusted their fragile little bodies and souls to me, that means I am probably capable of taking good enough care of them.
Staying with unloved spouse for the children's sake is not always selfish. Sometimes it is - to avoid financial responsibilities, for example, clearly knowing that the spouse is not a good fit for a parent and hopelessly selfish. But sometimes it's worth it. People do change for the better, and it's always worth to try and work the marriage problems out - up to a point. With a really selfish spouse the other parent gets to rear children all alone anyway, also harboring unhappiness which chidlren easily can pick up on. In this situation I believe it is selfish to stay married - they need to give their children opportunity for a more harmonious family.
I remember one lady told me one thing: just do your best, it does not have to be perfect, just good enough. Simple truth, yet often forgotten. It's like learning to swim - you go with the flow and do your best to stay afloat. If you were blessed with a child, you need to believe that you WILL manage to provide all it needs if you really try. But if you chose to stay childfree - you are certainly not a less valuable person for this. Maybe your destiny is something else. It's not at all selfish to exersize your free will.

Last edited by ukrworld; 02-28-2011 at 10:46 PM..
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Old 03-01-2011, 12:05 AM
 
12,849 posts, read 24,506,085 times
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I am 57, childfree by choice. Might have lost one great guy over it.
But I've always known I simply didn't want to be a parent. Didn't want to be around kids, didn't want to be "stuck", didn't want to be near babies, just plain didn't wanna. I never considered whether or not I'd be a good parent because I knew I didn't want to BE a parent.
I feel lucky that my feelings were so clear and I realized them so early. Got a tubal ligation at age 30 and never looked back.
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Old 03-01-2011, 01:38 PM
 
2,726 posts, read 4,369,225 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasper12 View Post
As a parent all you can do is the best you can. It took me 40 years to finally understand and forgive my Mom for things I blamed her for. My children blame me for things...maybe in 30 years or so they will also see that I did the best I could. That is all anyone can do. My children were never abused, had a home, and if that was not "good" enough...
Tough!
As for being "childfree" if you want that, do it. You make a choice...if I did not have children
Or could not have had them, I would have been okay with that..I would have done a PhD, and probably gone on to medical school.
Well, for my situation, now that I have come to terms with parents doing the best they can, my feelings are very different towards my grandmother who taught me fear and anger unknowingly. I finally cried for her which I did not do when she died. I cried for her because she didn't really live. I have no more blame to look for, only a future to look forward to and a life to live.
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Old 03-01-2011, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Up above the world so high!
45,270 posts, read 86,129,117 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suedonym View Post
(my) long story short(er)

My grandparents reared me. Largely because my mom saw no benefit to herself in dealing with me. Although she did see the (spiteful and selfish benefit) of taking me away from my dad when i was 2. Just to basically pass me on to grandma and papa

My mom tried in her own way, i suppose. It's not like she wasnt around. she remarried when i was 12 and was married long enough to have 2 kids, and then get divorced- and let her ex take those kids. shes just not a caregiving kind of person. Almost as though if she sees no benefit to herself, she sees no reason to do anything. its her. always has been. i love her for who she is, even though i dont particularly like her.

I found my dad (actually HE found ME) just a few years ago. I am closer to him than my mom.

I could harbor resentment, but whats the good of that? what purpose does it serve? Regardless of whether or not I agree with what she did, I can't change her actions. I love her. she is my mom. and i guess in her own way, did what she felt was right. even if i didnt love her, i still cant change the past. only go forward.

my mother has continued her legacy of leaving by moving across the country, leaving my husband and I to care for my grandparents (who, coincidentally, she owes a LOT of money to).

it is what it is.

I think people who use their past as a crutch as to why they cant do something, are looking for an excuse. Accept your past for what it was, make a promise and keep it- to do better than others- and move on with your life. You can forgive, without forgetting, loving , or even liking the person who 'did you wrong'.

Anger, hate, resentment... it all breeds negativity. If you breed negativity, thats all you will attract. So for me, I try to breed (and attract) love, acceptance, and peace.

My husband, whose father was TERRIBLY abusive (makes mommy dearest look like an angel), is the gentlest man I've ever known (next to my papa). He vowed to be different than his father, and he is.

and thats all i have to say about that.

You and your husband are my kind of people!

What a difference it would make in how this world functions if more people took personal responsibility as seriously as you guys!
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Old 03-01-2011, 02:25 PM
 
2,726 posts, read 4,369,225 times
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Originally Posted by lovesMountains View Post
You and your husband are my kind of people!

What a difference it would make in how this world functions if more people took personal responsibility as seriously as you guys!
How does a child learn to take personal responsibility if the parent yells at her and says "Stop crying! You made me yell at you!"? Chances are the child is surrounded by similar people, not anything close to you or your kind of people.

I heard this today at the park. The girl was about 6 years old. All she wanted to do was play at the playground, not run around the track with her mom.

A person is taught personal responsibility and if they don't have it, their parents more than likely didn't have it. Parents make the bed their children sleep in. Hopefully, when the child becomes an adult, they realize they can fix their bed.

Last edited by crisan; 03-01-2011 at 02:43 PM..
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Old 03-02-2011, 10:25 PM
 
1,838 posts, read 2,280,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crisan View Post
How does a child learn to take personal responsibility if the parent yells at her and says "Stop crying! You made me yell at you!"? Chances are the child is surrounded by similar people, not anything close to you or your kind of people.

I heard this today at the park. The girl was about 6 years old. All she wanted to do was play at the playground, not run around the track with her mom.

A person is taught personal responsibility and if they don't have it, their parents more than likely didn't have it. Parents make the bed their children sleep in. Hopefully, when the child becomes an adult, they realize they can fix their bed.
This was the main issue everyone was expressing was how some parents simply refuse to take accountability for their failed parenting choices. They think because they gave birth to you that in itself makes them a great parent with great parenting skills and it doesn't. Some of the folks said they wish their parents would just simply apologize for the hell they put them through and they couldn't even do that. In their eyes they brought them into the world so they should be forever grateful for that alone.
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Old 03-03-2011, 12:32 AM
 
Location: Australia
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If the parents are crap then what is the point of getting the grandparents to raise the grand kids. Given that they already have a track record for bringing up kids that are poor parents themselves.
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:56 AM
 
2,726 posts, read 4,369,225 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shysister View Post
This was the main issue everyone was expressing was how some parents simply refuse to take accountability for their failed parenting choices. They think because they gave birth to you that in itself makes them a great parent with great parenting skills and it doesn't. Some of the folks said they wish their parents would just simply apologize for the hell they put them through and they couldn't even do that. In their eyes they brought them into the world so they should be forever grateful for that alone.
More than likely, if parents put their children through hell, chances are their own lives were hell. They probably didn't know how to protect themselves or their children. Their only ways of communicating that boundaries were broken was either through lashing out or running away from the problem. Many of these parents also profess "the child must learn what the real world is like." Though it is obvious that they didn't have any useful answers.

Their children grow up with a few friends who may not even be considered good friends. Some of these children grow up giving more than they take, a relationship similar to their parents. Pecking orders are established.

The thing is that in normal, healthy families, parents don't really take accountability for their failed parenting choices they way you think they should. First of all, they don't make the same bad choices as your or my parents. They do make mistakes but they recognize that everybody makes mistakes and don't hold the children's mistakes against them.

You can't expect your parents to take responsibility for their failed choices. It makes them feel uncomfortable inside and their own parents taught them how to deal with those feelings: lashing out or running away, in other words, anger and fear.

ETA: I hate to say this but I suspect you are not taking responsibility for your anger and fear. There is a way, you just need to ask the right people how.

Last edited by crisan; 03-03-2011 at 06:29 AM..
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:31 AM
 
2,726 posts, read 4,369,225 times
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I don't know who just repped me. Thank you for the POV. The problem is that personal happiness comes when your parents provide these things:

Food
Shelter
Safety
Love (happiness, affection)

Many times, parents don't know how to protect themselves or their children. There is no way they can be happy with themselves if they cannot do this. They also don't teach their children how to protect themselves.
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:52 AM
 
Location: In a chartreuse microbus
3,844 posts, read 5,111,704 times
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To the OP: I'm glad you are putting serious thought into parenthood. To answer your question about remaining child free, simply put, there were few good examples of well adjusted adults in my childhood. I've never felt ready, (read: competent) enough to be a truly good parent. Almost no one in my younger years seemed to ever be happy, or even content. I remember vicious fights between family members, or just outright silence and indifference. My dad was forced by the state to take back his children when he remarried, we were all in foster homes, and this scenario was not in the stepmother's plan at all. Hence, we were unwanted from day one, and told things like, 'It wasn't worth the powder it took to make you!'. Everything was our fault, from the money issues to a clogged drain.
Needless to say, I bailed at age seventeen and never looked back. They didn't want me then, and I don't want them now. I never learned anything of value that would help me in my adult life, save for the precious few months I had with my paternal grandmother.
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