Dealing with anger is so big that it can only be dealt with in little chunks at a time. I have some myths about anger such as
- It is not ok to feel angry
- If other people are angry with me then I made them feel that way and I am responsible for fixing their feelings
I was overcome with anger and fear yesterday after some troubling parent/child interactions and I prayed for help. When I went out to interact with the family I was able to eventually start behaving normally instead of having a frozen face and I was able to know what to do in order to be present with the child in the evening and have some low key interactions. It seems like magic because I was not acting the way that I normally do – which would have been stressed out, resentful, and withdrawn. The Lord really did help me through this difficult situation.
The preparation that I did before I went out to interact with the family is that I allowed myself to feel the anger and then I started writing. After I finished venting I identified my unreasonable expectation which was that I am not qualified to be a parent because I am flawed. I am terrified that I will permanently harm my children because of my weaknesses and my codependent traits and have these ideas that there is the perfect “Authoritative” parent out there, which is not me, and that I do not measure up.
My reasonable expectations are:
All parents are flawed. Kids are going to suffer from the weaknesses of their parents but they are given ample opportunities to heal. Keep trying – you don’t have to be a great parent, just a good one.