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  • Writer's pictureGali Goodman

Dealing with sadness as a parent

Children go through so much, whether it is academic problems, social problems, behavioral problems, you name it! Most children go through some sort of hardship in their young life, some problems are more serious and some are less. However, to each child their problem is important to them.

How to cope with sadness while parenting:

1. Validate yourself. It is so important to realize that you are entitled to feel emotions when your child is upset. It makes you human, it makes you a good parent.

2. Determine who is sad. Is the sadness coming from you or your child? If your child is not invited to a party or doesn't have 100 friends, does he/she appear to be upset or is it you that is upset? Don’t make your child upset about something that he/she might not even see as a problem. What might have made you sad as a child might not make your child upset.

3. There is a time and place to show emotions. If you are sad, make sure you do not pour your emotions onto your child. Your child is not the one who is supposed to comfort you. It is OK to show emotion and for them to know you understand their problem, but they do not want to see you “lose it.” If you let your child see how sad you are about his/ her problem, your child might feel that there is a reason to panic. Children want to see you care, but they also want to feel that you are in control and strong enough to help them navigate the problem.

4. Seek Help. So many times we are so readily available to get help for our children but drag our feet to get help for ourselves. Parents are the bedrock of the family, and if you are sad or upset, do not feel guilty getting the help you need.The stronger the bedrock is, the stronger the family on top of it will stand. Getting help for yourself will also help your child.

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