One thing I have learned through my experiences as a father of four, a social worker for the state of Georgia, foster/adoptive facilitator, and a life coach that the hardest job humans can undertake is parenting. This job is, as many have said before me, the most tedious, underpaid, high stress/anxiety producing task that gives small payments during the job but it largest payout during the end. Parenting is a never ending process that will require constant thinking, planning, and reevaluating the choices, decision, and expectations of the parent. I state this because I feel and have witnessed the impact improper parent have on their offspring.
As a father of four, I have had the opportunity to witness the birth of all four, each unique in their own way of arrival and presentation to this world. With each child I held, a responsibility was given to me to ensure the safety and wellbeing of my child. To provide this innocent individual with the tools and knowledge that will allow them an opportunity to become productive adults. So I thought, "just feed them, clothe them, send them to school, play with them a little, protect them from harm, and work so I can buy them the latest gadget." Sounds easy huh? Well the annoying buzzer sounds symbolizing something's wrong sounded "egnng" Well that's really the hard part of parenting. For the things you do or don't do for your child influence your child perception of his or her world.
I had the opportunity and continue to see the above statement at work everyday as a social worker. In my line of work, I am allowed the chance to witness the impact improper choices have on the family, especially the offspring. The choices of substance abuse early in life by the parent, the non use of contraceptives when engaging in procreative activities, the search for self gratification in the expense of the offspring which often led to the harm, physically and mentally. Working with these parents, they often understand, when they are presented with the facts, the errors they have made. And though they can not change the past, they want a better future. They often learn that their past childhood experience impacts their parent style, the decision they have previously made and their own wellbeing. As I work with those parents, it was amazing to see the turn around they would make as they worked to achieve the goals set before them as well and it was something they wanted to do. For I have come to believe that no parent wants to be a quote unquote Bad parent. But they just were not given the knowledge which would have provided them with the opportunity to make healthier decisions.
Now rearing one's offspring is a hard task, just think about rearing someone's else offspring, who comes with their own little packages of personal dilemmas, psychological diagnoses and general attitudes. This is the job of the foster/adoptive parent. And my job was to prepare them for this journey they wanted to embark on. Foster/Adoptive parenting or resource parenting as it is referred to by the Department of Human Services for the State of Georgia are special people who love what they do and least want to the chance to help a hurting child. However, they during the process of becoming a resource parent learned that they too had to consider the implications their decisions would have while parenting the venerable child. It was my job to provide them with the tools they could use while parenting the child. But unlike when rearing their own children, they would have community resources and coaches along the journey as a support for them. Which I learned was what ALL parents need.
I have several resources and continue to use them as a support for me in my journey as a parent and I feel that this is a resource that never goes away. There will always be family situations that assistance is needed. Whether this is with the children, significant relationship issues, or with the daily toils of life and that's where my work as a life coach comes in. I am there to assist with these situations. To motivate, educate and elevate the family. For with everyday that the family is together, living, working and dealing with the daily struggles, the more opportunity that family have to develop the family cohesiveness needed for a lasting relationship. For this is what I feel is the true meaning of family.
When helping my family I work with them one on one, whether in their home or over the phone. This approach is what I have noticed worked the best. Allowing the family to express themselves freely within their own environment.