Friday 7 April 2017

Do you need a break from parenting?

* Collaborative post

This post is sure to ring true for many of you and I think we could all do with a little more time to be ourselves, for our own benefit and for that of our children too...

All parents would tell you so: Being a mom or a dad is a full-time job. It’s true. Once you’re a parent, you don’t stop being one. But being a parent doesn’t mean that your child should receive all your attention all the time, anytime. Before being a parent, you were a woman or a man who enjoyed some time to recharge their batteries; you were in a loving relationship, you were one of many friends.

These things don't have to change just because you've had a baby!

It’s important that we remind ourselves as parents of one universal truth: Having a child doesn’t mean that we should forget who we were and what we loved to do before. While parenthood changes your life, it doesn’t negate everything you’ve done before your child was born. And from time to time, you need to maintain the link to who you were before you had a child, for your sake. This doesn’t mean that you don’t love your child anymore, or that you are a worse parent for it. But before being a parent, you are a person, and as such, you have personal needs to attend to.

The Important 'Me' Time

Young parents often feel guilty at the idea of taking
some me time. They often feel like they are abandoning their child. It’s important for your own well-being that you schedule a few hours throughout your week that are entirely dedicated to you. What you do with those is up to do. From painting your nails to watching your favourite TV show, there is no limit. What matters is that you give yourself the time to relax and to remember that being a parent doesn’t define your life. It is only one of the many roles you have.

The Important Couple Time

Keeping some time together as a couple can be challenging when you first have children. But if your family is happy to look after the baby for a couple of days, you should definitely plan a romantic weekend away. There’s no need to travel to the other end of the world for it. London, for instance, has plenty of romance to offer. From spotting the perfect bunch of flowers at the Columbia Road Market to riding a horse through Hyde Park, you will find plenty to do. If you’re one for quirky and thrilling entertainment, try the Jack The Ripper Tour that takes you through Victorian East End. You’ll be needing his arms around you to sleep tonight!

The Important Social Circle

Finally, if you remember having friends before the birth, you still have them. While there may not be as many partying nights as there used to, nothing is stopping you from inviting your friends for an afternoon tea at home. Or maybe you can organize a garden party in the summer when your baby is a little older. It’s essential that you don’t let parenthood destroy your social circle. Being a parent doesn’t stop you from having fun with your best friends. These two sides of your life are perfectly compatible if you try. They are not mutually exclusive.


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