I wish I had the information about positive parenting.
Thinking about the way I parented our four children, who now have children of their own, I have many regrets, although there were good times too.
On one hand we were reasonably good parents. We both really loved our children, spent time with them, looked after their health, nurtured and cared for them in so many ways.
Then on the other hand there was the over strictness, harsh punishment and very little emphasis placed on looking after their feelings. These are the things I regret. My adult children have now heard me say this many times and I know I have their forgiveness.
However, when I also learnt how to forgive myself for this part of my parenting I also tried very hard to get rid of the feeling of regret that I carried. No matter how much I tried it was still there. After realizing it was there to stay and that I couldn’t put my children back where they came from and begin again I decided I could at least initiate positive change in my own life and hopefully in those around me in the years ahead. Hence the energy that fuelled my many regrets I now redirect into passion to make a difference.
It is so true that we can’t change the past. I always remember the words of my old supervisor. Kerri Hoy, at Barnardos saying to me, ‘Now that it has happened, the focus should not be on the mistake but on what we can learn from it and especially what we are going to do next’.