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Old 05-13-2018, 04:00 PM   #1
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Confused My kids tough emotions

I have borderline personality disorder and have had lots of trauma growing up. I now have 2 kids of my own. A 2 1/2 year old and a 6 year old. I'm a school counselor somehow by the grace of God. I think I'm a pretty smart gal but it's definitely harder when it's your own kids.

I have a very hard time allowing my kids to experience hard emotions. I think I try to over compensate for my past. I'm trying to parent me as a kid if that makes sense. If my kids are upset or crying it's hard for me to not fix it for them and take away the pain. I also get annoyed with their feelings at times (which I hate doing and admitting). I think it's mostly because no one was ever there to take away mine or care for my pain growing up. I felt alone and empty.

But I logically know I need to let them experience tough emotions and challenges because that will ultimately help them be more successful in life. I guess I'm just lost. I don't really know where the fine line is. I suppose writing this helps too.

How do I parent my strong willed 6 year old but still show her I love and care about her feelings? At what point do I help her feel better and at what point do I let her sit with those hard feelings? Should I be asking a different question all together?
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Old 05-14-2018, 03:48 PM   #2
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I also have BPD but honestly I think it is a trait of being a parent that you don't want your kids feeling hurt. My son is almost 13 and there are often times I just want to take all the pain away, he is on the spectrum and has so many issues that I just want to make better.

There is a book that many of my friends have recommended: Raising Your Spirited Child, Third Edition: A Guide for Parents Whose Child Is More Intense, Sensitive, Perceptive, Persistent, and Energetic

Good luck!

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PTSD diagnosed January 2000
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Old 05-14-2018, 06:46 PM   #3
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Hello Rom: I believe this to be your first posted thread here on PC. So... welcome to PsychCentral! I hope you find the time you spend here to be of benefit.

You mentioned you're a school counselor. I recall my school guidance counselor... Doris *****... many many years ago when I was in junior high school I believe it was. She asked me what I wanted to do when I grew up. And, when I couldn't tell her, she told me I was going to be a bum. (Actually, as it turned out... she was right!)

I'm sorry there's not much of anything I can offer with regard to your concerns. However here are links to some articles, from PsychCentral's archives, on the subject of how to manage children's emotions. Perhaps some of the information in these articles will be of some help:

My best wishes to you & your family...
"The mind knows right and wrong. Breath makes no distinction. If we concentrate our breath and don't let the mind interfere with it, it remains soft and pure. Who else but a child can do this?" Chiao Hung (1541-1620)
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Old 05-14-2018, 09:57 PM   #4
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Thank you for the resources! This will be very helpful!
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Old 05-16-2018, 01:51 PM   #5
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Default Re: My kids tough emotions

I also have BPD, most certainly stemming from a horrific childhood, and I really struggled parenting for the first few years. I also agree that every parent wants to shelter their child from pain, so I'd be hesitant to blame the BPD for that.

What was most helpful for me was to remind myself of all the things my parents did to me that I came to resent and to make sure I wasn't doing the same thing to my child. No child should have to go through the things that I did, but I'd never take it back because I learned what kind of parent I NEVER want to be. I make sure every day that I'm not doing what was done to me and that I AM doing what SHOULD have been to/for me. For example, emotions were absolutely forbidden in my household. And oh boy, if you said "I love you" then you were asking for a world of hurt. I've made it a point from day one to always let my child know how much I love him. It actually helped me deal with a lot of my skeletons without realizing that was happening.

A tragic childhood can become kind of a priceless life lesson, if you look at it from a different perspective. You can't go back in time and undo what was done, but you can control whether or not that cycle continues to another generation. Nothing is more powerful than knowing you're changing the family dynamics for the better. Take that mom and dad!
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Old 05-19-2018, 07:54 AM   #6
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I'll not forget the best words of wisdom by my gram as my youngest started a spell, she reminded me that it's important that I let him feel his feelings. He was about 2 at that time.
Of course, now I'm living an era of hormonal changes so it's rather trying to embrace their mood changes.
I don't know if fortunately or unfortunately with their closeness in age, but I'm beginning to see a light at the end of the tunnel through my oldest as his own moods are reaching what seems to be a plateau at 15.
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