I’m a good parent. I’m a good parent.

Thursday, December 10th, 2015

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedInPin on PinterestShare on RedditDigg this

If I let my mental guard down for even a minute, I’m a terrible parent. It’s not may kids who would say this, or my friends, or even strangers. It’s what I would say to myself. I’m most definitely not a good parent.

I don’t even have to do anything different in my parenting style for my mind to go there. I can go about my day still occasionally yelling at my kids, sometimes swearing, often looking at the stories of other parents raising three-year-old’s who have learned how to code but do so without the usual “all parents do this” lens I usually look at life through and come away thinking I’ve broken my kids.

This is something most of us do. I don’t know if it’s a byproduct of looking online at stories of parents we’d call great all day long or whether it’s because we all see the internet viciously react to a parent doing something we do all the time.

But for some reason, I find it easy to say:

“They are a good parent.”


“You are a good parent.”


“I am a bad parent.”

But I find it nearly impossible to say:

“I am a good parent.”

Or, when I do manage to find a block of time to tell this to myself, there’s the other side of my brain right there ready to remind me of the time in the morning I didn’t let my daughter have a second handful of Shreddies even though she used the word “please” when she asked for them or that my three-year-old know the word “fuck” and that I think I heard her whisering it to her bear that morning.

Well, fuck that.

“I’m a good parent.”

Dad with a beard

I should say that more often. You should say it more often too. Even when you don’t believe it. Especially when you don’t believe it.

Because if someone were to ask me if I thought I was raising good kids, I’d be answering in the positive before the question had been completed. Because if someone were to ask me if my girls are going to change the world for the better, I’d have an easy time picturing their impact.

Because for every face full of tears that sits at the forefront of my memory, I can see hundreds of smiles poking out behind it. Because when I ask my daughter what it means to be beautiful, she answers “be kind.”

Because saying “I’m not a good parent,” means I’m allowing someone else’s story define my aptitude as a parent.

Because what we secretly hope as parents—that other parents are struggling too—is the truth. Because I have moments that make other parents feel like a bad parent and I know these moments are fleeting. Because I know when my child sits at a restaurant while someone else’s kid doesn’t, they’ll use my kid as an example for how someone “should act.” And because I’ll know that’s not true because next time the tables will be turned.

I’ll say I’m a good parent because I am. There will be many times when others don’t believe that and there will be more times that I don’t believe that.

I’m not perfect, but I’m a good parent.

4 responses to “I’m a good parent. I’m a good parent.”

  1. […] Mike Reynolds from Puzzling Posts has something to say in “I’m a Good Parent. I’m a Good Parent.“ […]

  2. John camacho says:

    I believe in self motivation and this is one of them. I was blindsided by my divorce (currently still going through proceedings) but through this difficult time I’ve had to remind myself I was already a hands on father to a beautiful one and done daughter… she’s 2yrs 6mths and knows how to make any situation her bitch.. meaning the “I love yous” when she knows daddy isn’t too happy with either efforts or direction. Knows when to drop a “daddy I want to hold you” when I can sense my own stress on the rise. It’s amazing how those moments when you feel as if , this is what my life’s come too, actually payoff in verbal interactions or straight up actions. Of course I’ve got me a winner of a soon to be ex wife, I’m sure us single dad’s all have one, but yet she’s barley catching up to my already established level. To the point I’m telling her she’s welcome when she starts her bitch mode rants about how she’s moved on. See that right there is where I know I’ve made it to the top of parent hood. While she’s busy consuming 30 packs and shaking that ass for attention she was already getting but decided that I wasn’t worthy of her love, that’s where she shows she’s not in it for the kids or the label of mom or mommy. I mean my daughter cries when she has to go back to mommy’s house due to her days. It’s sad, because here’s a woman who by choice let me leave it in and gave birth to a special someone we created as one. And now has the odassity to rep as the only one who should have her. Already had a child from previous relationships, yet I took over and became mr. Driving Mrs daisy for 4 yrs. Then had the pleasure of seeing and being involved in the most awesome experience a loving couple could share together. To see my daughter arrive after two pushes was the best day of my life to date. … Yet I had to fight for the days I was already doing for our family. I have on site daycare at my job, yes a blessing in itself, I have the pleasure of going for private walks and seeing her when I get a chance to break away from the Daily grind to pay a non deserving half ass mother who probably spends the 51 buckaroos on 30 packs of Tecate light, and the additional 149 I added to it to make it an even 200, yes I know wtf were you thinking? But you see this is my point, she knew she made more yet I spent more, she knew I did more with the kids yet wanted to give me less time with mine and said the one I’ve called my son was no longer my problem.. problem? When did I ever state he was a problem? I had a problem with you , you around the way girl, the one who took her time to get home, slept in on her days she worked from home and watched me , I mean yelled at me to turn the lights off , when I got my daughter and our son, My step son ready and out the door 5 days a week. Too now see her efforts only because she has too pisses me off, hence the rant but justification of being a “good fucking parent” , because in the end, I’ll be the one happy to have been the reason my daughter has enough sent to never do anything that would hurt her chances at becoming a loving confident woman needed to be able to succeed at the basics in life. Never sugar-coated anything and won’t start now. If you don’t like what your mother’s doing say something . If Im doing something wrong or in question, by all means boo boo tell me. Know why, Cuz like I’ve said from the very beginning when I whispered into your 3hrs of life’s ear, “daddy will always be here for you “, and I fucking mean it. Mommy’s gonna get caught slipping because she thinks she’s doing what she has too when she’s only doing what she wants too. Big difference between the love for a “family” when the live for each other should have already been there. I’ve learned I was taking care of 3 kids when it finally closed its doors.. bye bye now, I’ve got to get ready for work. And see my daughter yell daddy!!! When I walk in those doors to daycare… fight on fellow single dads, we were made for this shit. . Immature prove it.

  3. Jason says:

    Great topic to touch! What we see on the internet is the good because nobody wants to share the bad. I curse & yell probably as much (if not more) than you and I don’t give a shit! My son knows that the “adult words” are for adults and that he’ll have his time when he can say them. I yell because after the 2nd time of me having to talk that’s what I do. I was brought up that kids listened when told to do something until they became teens, lol.

    There are times when I feel like a shitty parent as well but I’m sure we’re not alone. We can’t always be great. Think of all the things our parents did wrong the next time you feel like a bad parent. You’ll feel better 😉

Leave a Reply

Related Posts:

© 2012-2018 Puzzling Posts