In honor of Mother's Day, Imagine Hope is blogging about several different characteristics of a healthy Mom.
She is involved in her child's life-- but not too involved.
Sound confusing? I think for most moms and parents, it definitely is! After all, kids don't come with a manual!
Being involved in your child's life is so important-- attending their activities, spending quality one-on-one time, learning about what is happening in your child's life, and truly meeting your child on their level and entering their internal world through play, etc.
When does this become too much? When your involvement is inappropriate for their developmental level, when the child is expected to meet the parent's needs and when you begin to foster dependency needs rather than allowing your child to grow up. For example, expecting your teenager to spend more time with you than their peer group and shaming them for wanting to gain independence. Or wanting your young child to play the role of comforter to you, and to provide for your need to be needed and feel loved, when they need to begin gaining autonomy (e.g., having your child sleep with you in the marital bed, when they need to learn self-soothing).
It's such a fine line between the two, but so important in raising healthy, well-adjusted children. Mom's have such a special role in a child's life. For that, we truly applaud all of the Mother's out there! Happy Mother's Day and thank you for reading!
Joleen Watson, MS, LMFT, NCC, is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. She enjoys doing marriage counseling, relationship counseling, couples counseling, and individual counseling. Imagine Hope also specializes in family, child and adolescent counseling and serves Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield, and Fishers.