I often struggle with feelings of inadequacy as a parent, and with frustrations at the ways my neurodivergence bumps up against my children’s needs and society’s expectations of me as a mother. I can’t easily go grocery shopping or do the washing. I get panicked taking my children to group social activities that I didn’t plan. Creating routines my kids might want is incongruent with the way my brain works.
I give myself a really hard time some days about the way that I parent.
I’ve noticed recently in laughing with friends about our quirks, and reassuring and supporting others, that this feeling of inadequacy is common. In lieu of a blog post, I popped outside to try my hand at sending you a message via video.
If it resonates, I’m offering you my solidarity and wishes for gentler days for you.
I’m hoping as my courage grows, that I can share more of myself this way, as well as blogging more when I can. Take care,
Video description and transcript:
I’m standing in my backyard, on a sloping hill with a fence, trees, a red chair and a green swing in the background. I’m a white woman with a black tee, light brown hair and I am often looking at you, and sometimes away. My hand is on my chest as I speak. I give a peace sign and blow a kiss at the end. I think I look earnest. I am!
“Hey you, mama there, parent there at home, struggling, feeling like you’re not enough.
Especially a shout out to neurodivergent folk – parents who are autistic with ADHD, bipolar, depression,postnatal depression;
People who feel like you’re shit because you can’t unstack the dishwasher, can’t put the washing on.
You’re not playing with the kids enough, you don’t enjoy reading them books because you get too distracted.
You’re crying all the time. You’re spending too much time on the couch.
If that’s you, and you’re feeling like you’re not living up to society’s ‘standards’,
I just want to invite you to offer yourself the same love and acceptance and kindness and forgiveness that you offer your children.
It’s something that I’m practising doing.
I’m working on accepting who I am, asking for help when I need help with little things and big things.
Accepting help from my partner and my family.
But mostly just accepting myself and loving myself, and I really want to invite you to do the same.
Who gives a shit about what your house looks like or whether you’ve cooked a perfect dinner?
It really doesn’t matter at the end of the day.
Just give yourself a bit of kindness.”