Parenting From a Place of Fear
Parenting is an incredible journey that comes with its own set of challenges. As a parent, you want to provide the best for your child and ensure their safety at all times. However, it is common to feel a sense of fear and anxiety when it comes to parenting, especially in today's unpredictable world. While some level of fear can be helpful in keeping your child safe, parenting from a place of fear can be detrimental to both you and your child.
In this blog post, we will explore the different ways fear can show up when parenting, how it feels, and most importantly, how to cope with it.
What is parenting from a place of fear?
Parenting from a place of fear refers to parenting in a way that is driven by fear and anxiety rather than love, support, and trust. When parenting from a place of fear, parents tend to be overprotective, micromanage their child's every move, and have a constant sense of worry about their child's safety and well-being. This can create a tense and anxious environment in the home, leading to unnecessary stress and anxiety for both the parent and child.
Ways fear can show up in parenting
- Overprotectiveness: Fear can cause parents to become overprotective and prevent their child from exploring the world around them. This can lead to a lack of independence and self-confidence in the child.
- Micromanagement: Fear can cause parents to micromanage their child's every move, including their daily routines, social interactions, and schoolwork. This can cause the child to feel suffocated and can lead to rebellion or resentment towards their parent.
- Worry: Fear can cause parents to worry excessively about their child's safety and well-being. This can lead to constant stress and anxiety, which can negatively impact both the parent's and child's mental health.
In addition to identifying the source of fear, it is important to acknowledge that fear can also stem from feeling judged as a parent. When our child has big emotions and behaviours, we may feel as though others are perceiving us as bad parents, and this can cause us to parent from a place of fear. We may also worry about our child's behaviour being perceived negatively and being judged as naughty or manipulative, even when we know that their behaviour is developmentally normal and appropriate for their age. This can lead to using strategies that do not align with our parenting values, causing us to feel conflicted and uncertain in our parenting approach. Additionally, the fear of the future and who our child might become can also drive us to parent from a place of fear. By acknowledging these concerns and using strategies such as seeking support from like-minded parents, focusing on our child's strengths and positive behaviours, and trusting our instincts as parents, we can learn to parent from a place of love and support, rather than fear and uncertainty.
How fear feels
Parenting from a place of fear can feel overwhelming and exhausting. Fear can manifest in physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating, and shortness of breath. It can also cause emotional symptoms such as anxiety, worry, and a sense of helplessness. When fear takes over, it can be difficult to see things clearly and make rational decisions.
How to cope with fear when parenting
- Identify the source of your fear: It is essential to identify the source of your fear when parenting. Are you afraid of your child getting hurt? Are you worried about their academic performance? Once you identify the source of your fear, you can take steps to address it.
- Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness practices such as meditation, deep breathing, and yoga can help reduce anxiety and stress. Incorporating mindfulness practices into your daily routine can help you stay calm and centered when parenting.
- Seek support: It is essential to have a support system when parenting. Reach out to family and friends, join a parenting group, or seek therapy to help you cope with your fears and anxieties.
- Practice letting go: Learning to let go of control is an essential part of parenting. It is essential to trust your child and allow them to make mistakes and learn from them. By letting go of control, you can reduce your fears and anxieties and create a more relaxed and supportive environment for your child.
Parenting from a place of fear can be overwhelming and exhausting for both the parent and child. It is essential to identify the source of your fear, practice mindfulness, seek support, and learn to let go of control to cope with fear when parenting. By doing so, you can create a more relaxed and supportive environment for your child to grow and thrive in. Remember, parenting is a journey, and it's okay to make mistakes. By learning from them, you can become a better parent and create a loving and supportive environment
Circle of Security Parenting Program
The Circle of Security Parenting Program is an evidence-based program designed to help parents better understand their child's needs and behaviours, and provide them with the support they need to thrive. This program offers a supportive community of parents and caregivers and provides practical tools and strategies to help you build a secure relationship with your child.