Today we spoke with Dr. Eva Benmeleh, PhD, ihelpmoms.com Licensed Clinical Psychologist on how social media today and society often cause moms to try to be perfect. It can be soul crushing, induce anxiety and make the journey of motherhood feel like a rat race. So we decided to got to the EXPERTS to discover 4 ways to take a look at the to do list, clarify what we WANT in life and become the best moms we can be!
1. How do I know I am a perfectionistic mom and isn’t good to be one?
You know you are a perfectionist when: your favorite word is “perfect”, you focus on the straight “A’s” , your home must be immaculate, organized, Pinterest worthy, you decide on the number of toys that can be played with at a time and for how long, you take your time to find the perfect solution to solve someone’s problem and then, perhaps you get upset when they don’t take your advice. Is it good to be a perfectionist? I wouldn’t say it’s good or bad. A perfectionist can be ultra caring, detail oriented, organized, and reliable. A perfectionist can also be ultra critical, have poor boundaries, controlling, and anxious. So, I would say that if you can keep the tendency to fall of the wayside of perfectionism in check, there are plenty of perks to being one. And, when you do fall off the wayside, it is a good sign that something has to shift in your life.
2. If the mom is the only one who runs the family, how can a mom reduce her load?
Some moms find themselves in situations where they may feel like single moms because their significant other is just not involved with all of the decision making needed to raise a child. Other moms are single moms and have no one else to turn to for support. I would say, take a good look at your To-Do List. What are your strict musts, what are things that can be delegated to others, what are things that can be postponed, and what are things that can be deleted altogether? Also, take inventory of your standards- how realistic are they? How important are they? If they are important and realistic, you will find a way to make it happen. When we hold ourselves accountable and when we value what we want in our life, we become more open to different possibilities to find ways to make it happen, one way or another.
3. How do I know if my child needs professional help & support? What about me? And does it mean I’m not doing a good job as a mom, if my child has behavior or learning issues?
If you find that your child has been struggling for quite some time with certain issues and that whatever you have tried has not gotten to the root of the problem, it is time to seek the help of a professional. Many times, we want to think that the problem will resolve itself on its own, that it’s a phase, that it’s something in the diet, the school, the friend circle. But, if we see that our child is having a hard time with certain issues, it is okay to ask for help from a professional who has dedicated their career in these issues. We would do the same for our car if it kept making a squeaky noise, or if we had a cavity, why not for our child? Many times, parents avoid talking to a professional because they only focus on how this issue with their child is a poor reflection of them as parents. That somehow, they failed. I would say that that kind of thinking is what perpetuates the problem and can make it so much worse. The only way we can solve a problem is by understanding it and finding the solutions for it. As parents, we grade ourselves based on our child’s successes and failures, so we make it about us instead of what our child is going through. When we are able to take a step back and realize that everything is about the relationship between our child and ourselves, we come to see our child as a unique and separate being from us who may need some extra help to reach their potential. If we find ourselves not acting like our self, more snippety, judgy, on edge, or the opposite- listless, disinterested in life’s events, having some thoughts that seem weird or scary to you, it’s important to seek help. Parenting is a tough gig. Kids are our greatest teachers, they show us where we need to heal and grow and they do so unbeknownst to them and to us. If you are not processing these triggers with a trained mental health professional, you may take out your own issues on your child and project onto them that they are the source of the problem. When, the problem isn’t your child, or you. It’s a history of unresolved feelings that can get in the way of enjoying your life to the fullest with the people you love the most.
Today we spoke with Dr. Eva Benmeleh, PhD, ihelpmoms.com Licensed Clinical Psychologist
IG Handle: @dr.evabenmeleh
LISTEN TO OUR PODCAST HERE!
I want to help moms, the ones who are constantly striving for perfection, never reaching the finish line, instead, they are always finding frustrations and unmet expectations along the way. I strive to help families and the excruciating suffering of not feeling good enough and find connection, affection, and support.