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Whether you are a new parent struggling with the intricacies of putting on a clean diaper in the middle of the night, or a seasoned veteran dealing with your children's question about sex, there are days when you may throw up your hands and think "What the h#$% I am doing?"

We are about halfway through creating a comprehensive topic center on different stages of child development, and related parenting issues and strategies. We have written our parenting articles to "sync up with" the articles on particular development stages. So, for example, you will find tips about parenting a school-aged child in our Early Childhood Parenting Center.

Obviously, we can't write a document that will cover all of the potential roadblocks that parents will encounter. Are there any particular challenges that you have dealt with lately? Any great ideas that you would like to share with other parents? Let us hear from you.

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  • 2 weeks later...

One of the biggeset issues I am stuggling with in my family life is how to be a positive role model when dealing with so many personal stuggles.

I really don't want my kids to learn from me my stresses that I am dealing with. I just don't know how well I am hidding them. I have to say that this is my main reason for trying SO hard to overcome this. I love my children and one is very young so is completly dependent on me. And the older one has so many questions. I need to have the right answers to give him and belive them myself. I think that mostly I've done the best I can, I just think sometimes that time is passing me by and I'm missing out on alot of the feeling parts because of being so overwhelmed all the time. I guess I've realized I'm not the mom I thought I would be because of all this and I hate that. :D

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I think one of the really important ways to be a positive role model is to teach your kids how to deal with and cope with adversity. In other words, you don't have to show them how to be perfect or always have the right answers (no one can possibly do that or sustain that). In fact, that type of thought ("I MUST be perfect and have all the right answers"; and "I can only be a positive role model for my kids if I do everything right") is something you might want to work on in a therapy setting, because it's not very helpful to you.

Teaching your children ways to cope with the daily hassles and stresses that bother them is a lifelong skill that will serve them well. I encourage you to read through our parenting articles on our website for some ideas about how to do this.

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  • 1 month later...

I am in a similar boat. Despite all I have been through, I try with all my power to hide it from my kids. I do have migraine headaches so when my depression won't let me get out of bed, I usually just tell them I have a migraine. It is my way of shielding them from my inner pains. I stuff down a lot of my emotions until they are in school or in bed. I have a very realistic mask I wear whenever I need to be "normal" for my kids' sake. I shuck it at the first opportunity, though.

My kids are, surprisingly, well adjusted, bright amazing little miracles. They make me want to be better so that I can do better for them.

Most of my regrets stem from what my illness has cost them. I can only pray that, at the end of it all, I have done something right by them.

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  • 8 months later...

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