After five months of being at home with your child(ren), right now it can seem like an unrelenting task. Adding the stress of trying to work from home can feel unbearable and even impossible. The feelings that you have are not unusual. There may be many reasons for the stress that you are feeling, including your own attachment style.
Do you think you have everything you need to be the best parent you can be? If not, you are not alone. This thought is so common that there is a name for it, parenting stress. Parenting stress happens when a parent thinks that they do not have what they need to be a good enough parent. This stress can be affected by your attachment style (no attachment does not end in infancy) and your child’s behavior. Parenting stress can make you feel like you are drowning in stress, and it boosts the effects of other life stresses like being home all day with your child(ren) and trying to work.
Your attachment style can play a huge role in your parenting stress as attachment shapes how we view ourselves, others, and the world. Attachment is separated into two categories secure and insecure, which is characterized by avoidance and anxiety. Avoidance meaning that you avoid close relationships, and anxiety referring to worrying about whether your partner is going to be there and respond. These tendencies can show up as needing to be in control of things at home while you are working because you don’t trust others to do what needs to be done, which adds more stress to your day. This can also mean that when your child is having some challenging behaviors and you are trying to work at home you may feel more stress because of how you view your child’s behavior. For instance, you may interpret your child’s challenging behavior as a negative reflection of your parenting instead of a communication tool, but kids often communicate through their behavior, and it may not always make sense to adults.
As a parent in these challenging times, it is important to understand that you need to give yourself a little love and self-care so you can replenish your cup to continue pouring into your child(ren). It is also important to look at your own history and see where those past experiences may be adding stress to your life and your parenting journey. Exploration and addressing the issues that you may see, can lessen your parenting stress, and improve your relationship with your child(ren).
Monet Somerville, MS
Monet received her Bachelor’s of Arts in Psychology from North Carolina Wesleyan College. She then went on to receive her Master’s in Science in Psychology with a Concentration in Child and Adolescent Development from Capella University. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Developmental Psychology with a Concentration in Child and Adolescent Development. Monet is also a licensed Trust Based Relational Intervention Practitioner.
Prior to working to The Parenting Center, Monet worked as a Case Manager in a residential facility for adolescent girls who were in foster care but were unable to be placed in a foster home. She also taught foster parents about child development and the impacts that positive parenting can make on a child. Learn more about The Parenting Center at Children's Hospital.