Parents Self Esteem – The good, the bad and the ugly – How do we pass it on?


I have been thinking a little more about the theme from other blogs on self esteem. We teach that it is an individual adult’s responsibility to take care of their own needs and not expect others to do so for them. This makes them both emotionally mature and independent.

We also teach parents that it is their responsibility to maintain their children’s primary needs or self esteem.  But what if the adults self esteem is not complete, whole, or maintained?  Parents will still, naturally, seek to support their children.

On that theme I have been observing parents and how we manage our children’s issues or perceived issues.  The conclusion I am drawing is that, just as most criticism is a projection (CG Jung) so too are most concerns about your children’s self esteem. Of course, where do projections come from? They come from your own fears, concerns and experiences.

So imagine if you will an adult who grew up being affected badly by sudden, forced change in their life; to the point where they do not like change. Since their sense of their self is that they are normal, then it is understandable that they may judge all people to be change averse. Most importantly, as the love and responsibility parenthood brings, overwhelms then they are likely to vow to make sure their child never feels the way they were “made” to feel.

As a parent they are offered many opportunities to put this vow into practice. So when it is time for their child to attend nursery they will already have signposted it many months in advance and helped their child look forward to the event. The same thing happens with school and any other significant event. In fact, this parent manages to plan, in advance and sign post, almost everything to their child.

The upshot of this?? Their child is change averse unless everything they do is planned out for them. Ergo, the very thing their parent wanted to avoid has happened. They have built the dependency.

Another deeper issue I have observed is a parent who, at some point in their life, has been made to feel like they are the outsider. That they have to fight for friendships and they are not included. It hits all the classic primary needs to be loved, acknowledged, needed and valued. Again, wishing to make sure their child is never “made” to feel like they did, they go out of their way to make sure it does not happen. This parent will ring up other parents and actually say “x” is feeling left out will your daughter come over and play. Or she will step in with the parents to manage the slightest emotional dispute between her children. In other words she continually rescues her daughter and thus is causing a dependency that is not healthy and will ultimately have the same conclusion in her daughter’s life as her own.

The title of this blog asked the questions “How do we pass it on?” Well the answer is, we naturally pass on the good stuff because that’s what it is……….good! The conundrum is, while deliberately trying to compensate for the bad stuff, we just as easily pass that on as well.

So what is a parent to do?

Well, learn the techniques we teach to manage your own self esteem. Learn to be more self aware and thus aware of your own needs. Then take action to take care of your needs thus giving yourself the ability to take care of your own children’s needs in a balanced way.

If you want a confidential chat about your situation call Calm People West Midlands 07950344658 and ask for Paula or Calm People East Midlands 07850614042 and ask for Julian

If you want to know more about the anger management, stress management, and emotional resilience courses run in Derby & Birmingham call the above numbers or click here


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