Putting our trust in people is always a leap of faith. We have to trust that they will behave in the way we hope, carry our dreams with them, try not to hurt us. We do it every time we form a friendship that becomes meaningful, when we fall in love - but all of those are just practice for the big one: trusting people with our children and keeping them safe. Even that doesn’t compare to the biggest one of all: trusting ourselves with our children.
What parent has not sat over their child as they sleep, resisting the urge to touch them in case we wake them, but holding a silent vigil over their sleeping form regardless? What parent doesn’t know the fear of scanning every item we bring into our child’s lives, trying to keep up to date on scientific advancements, reading furiously through everything from baby monitor reviews to the horror stories about cheap Halloween costumes and their potential hazards. We want to know everything. We see it as a necessity for being a parent - always second guessing ourselves.
Of course, this is inevitably going to be incredibly stressful - at a time when we are least able to bear it. Though the problem does ease as your child ages - and it’s never quite as bad with your second or third children, thanks to your experience - it’s nevertheless an ever-present concern for many parents. So can a parent ever learn to trust?
Trusting The Right People - But Who’s “Right”?
It would be easy to say that you can trust your doctor with your child. Then, you remember that doctors make mistakes. Doctors miss things. So… can you trust your doctor?
What about your partner? You’d like to think you can trust them, but that little voice in the back of your mind sometimes has doubts.
Your parents? They clearly know their way around children, given that you’re here to be worrying about it - but, you fret, will they have remembered everything clearly?
Okay - so what about your friends who are also parents? Can you trust them? They’re at the sharp end themselves; their child is fine so they must be doing something right… but what if it’s different when it’s not their child?
Here’s The Thing: It’s Okay To Worry About These Things
This is a problem that happens to all parents. You worry so much about who you can trust, and then you feel bad about wondering. “How could I doubt my doctor?” you think, remembering all the ways they have helped you over the years. “What’s wrong with me? I’m a terrible person!”
There’s no need to feel guilty about having issues trusting people, equipment, or anything to do with your child. It’s just the power of parental instinct; the desire to nurture and protect is inbuilt into all of us. It’s the “Mama Bear” syndrome that, try as we might, we all have moments of feeling.
The only way it’s problematic is if it makes you feel guilty, or silly, for feeling like that. So give yourself a break: you’re protective and struggling for trust because you feel you have to. So read reviews, grill people on their abilities, and always keep one eye open - it’s alright, every parent does it.
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