Each and every person on this planet is a unique, important individual with their own strengths, weaknesses and quirks. There is a no single parenting approach that fits us all. When you start comparing yourself to other parents, or start comparing your children to other children, you will absolutely run into trouble.
Point #1: NEVER compare your parenting approach to those of a stranger.
Because you have absolutely no idea as to the life circumstances of the person to whom you are comparing yourself.
For example, maybe you see a gorgeous women in Target, dressed to the nines complete with high heels, pushing her cute 2 year old around as she shops for wine and cheese. You immediately feel jealous. This woman obviously has it completely together, is winning at life and has the parenting thing completely figured out. You think, I'm a mess compared to her! But that woman might actually be in an abusive relationship, and that child may be a witness to the physical and mental pain that she suffers from.
Or, maybe you see another mom in that same Target, who is dressed in pajamas and obviously has not brushed her hair or showered in two day. Gosh, at least I brushed my hair today, you think to yourself! But maybe her child is admitted to the local hospital, being treated for an aggressive cancer.
You don't know anything about the life story of these people. It's not fair to compare, and the comparison will only hurt you in your journey to becoming a great parent.
But what about people you know? People that you spend time with on a regular basis?
Point #2: Do not compare yourself to people that you do know!
Of course you can compare your parenting strategies to theirs because you know them, right? WRONG!!!! Just like the strangers in the examples previously, you have no idea what goes on behind closed doors. Social media is SO deceiving! People tend to post positive stories to make their lives seem perfect, when they are anything but perfect.
So please, take caution.
Your friends are not likely to make their trials and tribulations well known, except to people that they trust, and honestly, this typically happens off-line. Why? Because your friends, and even family, are telling you what they want you to know. Not because they are devious or malicious, but because they are trying to figure out how much they trust you. And because they may have been through some very ugly, painful things that they are working through, and feeling you out about addressing those issues. Also, just because you think that you know someone for 10 years, you might not know truly know them.
And what about the people that your work with?
You spend 8-12 hours a day with them. Of course you all understand each other. Which is a LIE! People you work with often are deceptive about their own issues. And just because you spend more time with them at work than they spend with their own families, you might not truly know them. And most people try to avoid any uncomfortable situation at work. So stop the assumptions!
To sum up...
Your goal is to become confident in your parenting approach and trust yourself. Stop comparing yourself to other parents! Your children are your business. Figure out what works best for you and your children (and for your partner or spouse if they are involved). And don't forget to seek advice from medical professionals when needed, we are here to help you!
You. Know. Your. Child. BEST.
You, Love, are enough. You were blessed with the children that you have because they were destined to be your children. Stop comparing yourself to other people! You have no idea as to their story. Instead, focus on making you the best person and the best parent that you can be. Focus on what you need to succeed. Focus on what you may need a little more education in. Focus on your shortcomings, and fix them. You can be a great parent, but it takes appropriate knowledge, understanding, and motivation.
I know you can do it!