Parenting rewarding? Is it really?

United States
December 1, 2007 12:09pm CST
First of all let me start by saying that I love my children and I am so glad they are in my life. Now with that said, I have to say that we kind of carelessly through around the word rewarding when we speak of parenting. I would like to know exactly what is so rewarding about it. Oh sure, there are many moments when our wonderful offspring cause us to beam with delight and pride but, for the most part being a parent is a very difficult, tiresome and sometimes thankless job. Being a parent is one of the hardest jobs anyone could ever choose to do. The responsiblilty is endless and it does not stop when they become adults either. We will always be concerned about their futures, well being and then, of that of their children. So, someone please tell me why so many of us put on the "show face" when it comes to parenting instead of admitting that it is one of the worst jobs ever. I have seen other message boards where women wrote something similar and the other mothers jumped all over them. I commend those women for being honest. I know it seems like the politically correct thing to say is that being a parent is the best thing that has ever happened to you. But, I would like to hear from a few honest mothers or fathers that are willing to admit that this parenting thing can be a pure drag sometimes.
4 people like this
8 responses
• Australia
2 Dec 07
Ok, yes, parenting is the hardest thing I have ever had to do. There's the noise, the mess, lack of sleep and the worry. I tend to spend a lot of time here at the computer, as my partner and i do shared care, that is, he does the feeding and I do the playing and washing! lol. My time here at the computer means I am still available to my kids and they can play while being supervised. I think for me, the best thing is knowing that I am contributing something positive to the world!
1 person likes this
• United States
3 Dec 07
I forgot about the mess! Ughhhh
2 people like this
• Australia
4 Dec 07
Yeah, the mess! Why don't kids come with a mop and bucket?
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Dec 07
Because we'd probably have to give birth to that stuff too! :)
2 people like this
@skinnychick (6937)
• United States
2 Dec 07
I noticed that your responses to your post are split. I'm going to be completely honest here and I'm not trying to offend at all though some may take it that way. I have 2 kids- 2 and 6- one is in school half a day and 1 is not. I'm a stay at home mom- domestic engineer if you will. The posts on here from us with multiple children vary greatly than those with only one. I don't trust babysitters and have limited family to babysit- so needless to say I can't get out much for adult time even if I could I would be so exhausted so I probably wouldn't anyway. People with one child are always saying how much they dote on their child, blah blah, blah and how great it is. Sure it's great while at times it might be hard you only have one to worry about- sorry but one is a piece of cake. If you have one child and then have another you will understand this. If you only have one right now you will probably be mad that I said it. Then those of us with more than one tell it like it is- it's hard, absolutely thankless, with glimmers of rewards. Watching your child grow and turning into a person is rewarding in itself but you don't have time to think about it because you have school obligations with one and potty training with another- all the while brother and sister are running around the house like it's a playground while an obnoxious telemarketer is calling. Don't forget being home with kids, you must have all the time in the world to clean the house, do the laundry, make dinner, etc... since hubby or partner is working and they are sooooo tired after work, they plop their butt on the couch after work with the remote. There really isn't enough hours in the day for everything and you just pray and can't wait until bedtime so you can get a bath in and go to bed. I love the "show face" I especially see that when soccer moms are picking up their kids from school- I just want to slap their fakeness off of them and their salon perfect nails. There I am in sweats and a sweatshirt- a 2 year old squirming in my arms because if I let him down he'll probably dart in the street. At times, I do feel that this is the worst job ever and so hard- I wondered why I had them to begin with. It doesn't mean I don't love or care for them, it probably just means I had a bad day. My mind knows that it isn't the worst but some days are pure hell and because of exhaustion your irritable and just really don't feel like doing your everyday stuff- you just need a break that you can't catch so you cry instead. Then you have the days that you realize why you did it- like report card day and your kid does awesome or you finally after months get your baby to go in the potty with a smile on his face and then you realize that it isn't the worst, just hard and the unconditional love they bring along with the good times makes it all worth it.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 Dec 07
Obviously one is easier, just like with anything else, less is easier. Does that mean that because I have only one my opinion doesn't count? Part of the reason I have only one child is so that I don't get over stressed and start to resent my job as a sahm. Parenting is rewarding all the time, not just when he makes an accomplishment. It is rewarding when I get frustrated because he is climbing onto the dining room table, and when I take him down for the tenth time in ten minutes, telling him 'I said no!' He puts his arms around my neck and kisses me and then goes to play somewhere else. It is rewarding when I have a bad day because I am sick and cranky and he comes and sits on my lap and shares his lovey with me. If it is too much for you some days, ask for help. Why do women put so much pressure on themselves to do it alone? Yes your husband works and is tired, but so do you. Make him understand that, and get him to help. And by the way, whether you have one child or ten, getting time alone is just as difficult. I don't get much time to myself, and like you, I am often too tired to do much when I have time.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 Dec 07
Ask him for help? I wish I could- LOL! He works 12 hour days overnight, Occasionally on his day off he'll give a little help but for whatever reason he is concerned with fixing something or cutting the grass- typical male. But you are right to ask for help. One child certainly doesn't mean your opinion doesn't count- your a mom of course it does! I guess asking for help in some way would show weakness as a mom and that is my problem- too stubborn. You want everyone to think you have it all together- your the mom- the rock! It's just a lot to take in sometimes. But the points you mentioned in your post- hit home! Sounds like my son! :)
2 people like this
@Carrie26 (1587)
• United States
13 Dec 07
Lol.Asking my husband to help is I should have done it myself because it never gets done sometimes until the next day.LOL.At times he has been hping more because sometimes I get mad at him and also his mom tells him to take out the trash when she comes to our house to visit.LOL.Not everybody has a husband that helps out and doese 50/50 share of the housework etc.My husband soemtimes thins that when he comes home his work is done and he plays games or gets on the computer etc.While I mak supper get the kids ready for supper and fix thier food etc.the list goese on and on.We used to live beside a couple who were married and had 3 kids and they boh went to college to be a doctor.He helped her do laundry,housework etc.Very nice people.At times I wish I coudl have had that help.But not everyones husband is the same.I love my kids too.But at times it can get hectic and I think everyone has a bad day doesnt make us a bad mom.
@ersmommy1 (12605)
• United States
1 Dec 07
For me it is not a face I put on! Being a mom will be the best thing that I do with my life. I have a job a house and all the other things that people are supposed to have. Doesn't mean anything without my kid. And yes I may fail. And yes there are horrible days where I say what the h--l am I doing and why did I do this. Days where I may not even get a shower and life sucks. But when it's not a "pure drag" it's the only job that matters. It's a parents piece of immortality. And your parents did and do the same thing. My mother still worries. It's the human process. All the snot, puke,poop and hard times are made worth it when I see the happiness of my child. at 41/2 she can zip her jacket help us with dinner(step stools are wonderful) do some basic math, she is becoming a person and yes I will always worry for her. Question is if you dont worry about something is it worth having? For me it makes that thing or person more valuable. The hardest job ever, doesn't make it the worst job ever
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Dec 07
Not the worst job ever by any means but you have an outside job and 1 child- honestly that outside job even if you don't think about it that way, it is a break from your child while it's not fun, it's still a break...As mothers we all worry about and love our kids and want the best for them but full time parenting is brutal and relentless at times especially with multiple children, honestly one child though it may not seem like it at the time is pretty easy especially when that second comes along and you can compare the difference. I'll trade you my 2 year old and 6 year old for you one! :)
1 person likes this
@ersmommy1 (12605)
• United States
2 Dec 07
I commented that I had a job. I didn't say I had a job outside the house. I work from home at 2 different jobs. Aside from that I have 2 nephews, and 6 nieces ranging in age from 3-14 yrs of age who I have helped and am helping to raise. I am well versed in the multi child experience. My six neices are sisters. Try settling an argument between 2 girls 12 1/2 and 14 over who is wearing whose jeans, Just getting them to agree not to argue while we load up the van while 5 are deciding where to sit, being home with my one child is refreshing after that lol you said something about a trade?
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Dec 07
LOL- trade one- non teen or preteen please- for my 2 and 6!! :) That is awesome that your taking care of your nieces and nephews- gotta love more than one! :)
1 person likes this
@chrislotz (8207)
• Canada
6 Dec 07
It's not just the parenting, to me, it's the loving part. I know parenting is very hard work, but when the love is so great it makes it worth it. I had a hard time raising my children as most of the time my kids were young, I was the sole parent. My kids turned out to be wonderful adults so I guess I did an okay job. The tell me they have wonderful memories about their childhood. I can't say the same about mine. They are well adjusted adults and will become wonderful parents themselves, one day, they say because I showed them how to be.
1 person likes this
@Sillychick (3282)
• United States
2 Dec 07
Have you ever heard the saying 'nothing worth having comes easy?' Well, it's true. If it's easy, where's the reward? You are correct 'being a parent is a very difficult, tiresome and sometimes thankless job." That is the very essence of the reward. The fact that it is difficult doesn't mean it's a drag, or that you can't enjoy it. Have you ever done something that was really, really hard, and then when you were done felt a feeling of accomplishment, and pride for seeing it through? That is what parenting is like. It's hard, but you do it because you love your children. Seeing them take their first steps, tie their own shoes, climb a tree, that is the reward. I can tell you that I do NOT put on a 'show face' or say what I think is politically correct, or what I think people expect me to say. I tell the truth. I LOVE being a parent, I LOVE spending my days with my son, I experience the rewards every single day. And yes, being a parent IS the best thing that has ever happened to me.
1 person likes this
@kurtbiewald (2629)
• United States
2 Dec 07
hmmmmmmmmm i guess I really don't know cuz I don't have kids I think maybe an older well behaved one or two might be ok a quiet thoughtful one who smiled a lot and didn't scream or complain too much that seen , not heard kind of thing, and sugar and spice and all that maybe I would try it
1 person likes this
@villageanne (8579)
• United States
1 Dec 07
Thankfully our daughters are now raised. I loved them very much and do think that raising them was rewarding, however, it was also some of the worst times that tried my patients. The teen years are the hardest. I dont envy anyone who has teens. Now that they are grown and married, I can see how the way I handled them as children did influience them. At the time, I thoughtI was wasting my time trying to teach them right from wrong. I felt like there were not listening. Now I know there were listening. Even though they acted like they were not. Now I see the things in them that I tried so hard to instill in them. Yes, it is very rewarding but you may not know and will sometimes doubt it.
1 person likes this
@Carrie26 (1587)
• United States
1 Dec 07
It can be a pretty tiring and endless job.I love my children as well but they are close in age (15 months apart)and they play good together sometimes but at times they fight like cats and dogs.LOL.And to top it all off some husbands dont help out as much as they should which is why I think their is a stronger bond between mother and child.Dont get me wrong some guys do help their wife out lots ,Some are stay at home dads while the mom goes out to work but some husbands always wake you up at night to say are you going to go get the baby and feed it or are you going to go check on so and so because they are crying instead of them getting up and helping.I can drag you down at times with the energy and also when you get older and the kids are grown up you are right you still worry.MY mom used to joke and say that it why I am getting gray hairs.But at times it is hard for us moms to even get time to ourself.A husband(some not all)will come home and think most of his work is done for the day since he went to work.Well what about us hardly ever getting break and also what about the moms that go out and work and then come home to have to do housework,cook,and take care of the kids.I dont know how they do it.I have been a stay at home mom ever since I was pregnant with my first child.At times I would like to go out and work just so I can get away for some time(pretty bad I have to go to work to do that LOL)but its such a hassle to find a babysitter(because you know the husband isnt going to call)and then you have to worr if you dont know the babysitter if they are a good one etc.Now if you know the babysitter that can be different but I think we would still worry just not as much.But I dont think other moms etc should get mad at other moms for voicing thier opinions.I think all moms get that way that theyt get tired and feel at times it can be a drag and if they dont they probably have some help or lots of help, etc.Alot of people bow it out of context as thinking that because a moms says that they are a bad mom which isnt the case.Beleive me their is some people that will blow anythng out of context.Sorry to vent.LOL.
• United States
1 Dec 07
Thank you so much for being honest. It is refreshing to not get the "politcally correct" response.
1 person likes this