I’ve been a people pleaser for as long as I can remember, though I haven’t always been as hyper-aware of this trait as I am today.
I’ve become more in tune with this part of who I am because, as a mom, I’ve had to learn how to say no. And much to my struggle, set boundaries as well.
I suppose I’ll always struggle with saying no and worrying about if I’m upsetting someone. But I’m proud of how far I’ve come in the last five years since having my first child.
One thing I wasn’t prepared for, though, was the mental toll that having kids would now play with this part of my personality.
I’m not sure I realized this even a year or two ago, but part of being a people pleaser for me is caring way too much about what other people are thinking and feeling.
Now I don’t want to discount the importance of empathy, but there does have to be a line drawn.
That line can be drawn firmly when it comes to topics that are personal decisions.
And in reality, that person’s opinion or thoughts on the matter shouldn’t really be of importance. For example, “What will they think of me if I homeschool my child? Will they think I’m weird? Do they assume my child won’t learn as much?”
Yes, I’ve realized it’s actually hard for me to answer some questions for this reason. I’m not only worried about what people think of me, but of the choices I’m making as a parent.
I know, it’s ridiculous and admittedly a problem for me.
Not only do I internally worry about what people are thinking, but then when comments are made that confirm my beliefs . . . well, then I feel like I’m in a tailspin.
My youngest daughter recently had to get a helmet for a flat spot she had developed. Prior to getting the helmet, I actually wasn’t worried about other people but worried about her and being able to adapt to it.
However, once she adapted perfectly to the new headgear, then the other thoughts started creeping in.
Will people know why she has it? Will people think it’s my fault and think I didn’t hold my baby?
I’ve had some very kind people come up to me and tell me stories about their littles wearing helmets. And, I’ve also had some people mention that’s what happens when you have a third—less time to hold the baby!
Ugh, these comments. I could let these eat at me and lose sleep over a complete stranger thinking I didn’t hold my baby. Or on the other hand, I can put a smile on my face and ignore the silly comments.
I’ll be honest, that’s hard for me to do.
But when I get these comments that make me feel like less than a good parent, or maybe like I’m not making the best choices for my babies, I have to remember one thing:
God gave me this job, and He’s entrusted me with these precious lives here on Earth.
If God thinks I’m equipped for the job, then that’s all I need.