Why Does Raising A Mini-Me Feel So Hard?



Children keep a mirror up to us like no one else.

But what occurs when you never like what you see?

What transpires when you know you are increasing your pretty individual “mini me,” and your coronary heart sinks?

Why is raising a mini me difficult?

I found out that guiding and supporting a miniature version of me intended holding that mirror back up to myself. It took a great deal of soul searching and acceptance to transfer past messages of shame and self-loathing that I experienced picked up.

If you have a youngster who reminds you of oneself and whose behaviors or upsets you obtain challenging to tackle, it could be you will need to discover much more compassion for oneself far too. 

Raising a mini me from working day 1

Permit me be very distinct. I dearly like my baby and generally will. What is challenging is when I can see that they are a “chip off the old block”, as the expressing goes, and I would have most well-liked they took more from the “other” parenting block. My husband is a whole lot far more chill and mellow than I am or ever was. He was also a quite uncomplicated little one by all accounts.

I understood early on that my firstborn was taking soon after me. In reality, it commenced with the first cry. (My mum and partner said it was specifically like mine!). This youngster is extremely certain about what they want, has had pretty apparent boundaries from an early age and shows sturdy-will and tenacity. (Browse extra about robust-willed small children listed here)

Really don’t we want youngsters to be robust advocates?

“These are wonderful traits!” 

Which is what I would say to any individual parenting a baby with these qualities. We want our young children to be potent advocates for on their own. We want them to be incredibly apparent on what they will and won’t tolerate. We want them to be in a position to coherently, emphatically and intelligently argue their way out of something that does not serve them.

So what was my issue?

The issue with raising a mini me was seeing myself

I was looking at myself in this little one. 

I didn’t like it at all. Why? 

I did not adore myself. 

There is a tune by New Zealand singer, Lorde, and the 1st time I read it I experienced to pull in excess of on the facet of the road and bawl as I listened to her sing these text: “They say ‘you’re a legal responsibility, you are a small considerably for me.’ ”


That felt like me.

I noticed all all those wonderful qualities that I imagine make for powerful human beings, the transform-makers and the intense advocates, by my personal lens of panic. I experienced this sort of painful memories of the trouble these identical traits experienced brought on me in my youth. 

So any time my kid shown off-keep track of actions, my initially ideas went to worst-situation eventualities. I blamed myself for her actions and I also resented her for remaining Just. Like. Me.

I observed all the items I didn’t like reflected in my boy or girl

As a boy or girl I was identified as the “naughty” one particular, applying humor and disruption to amuse my classmates into liking me. I selected to be brashy and outspoken and my mouth acquired me in issues frequently. 

Correct or not, I felt like I was much too substantially problems for everybody. 

And now below I was, seeing all these items I didn’t like about myself mirrored in my own youngster.

And then I found out a instrument that assisted me come across appreciate and acceptance for us both of those. 

This tool served me locate adore and acceptance

1 very strong instrument we have in this article at Hand In Hand Parenting is Listening Partnerships. This is in which you share uninterrupted and unfiltered venting, pondering, crying, complaining, and no matter what you like with a Listener. They will not choose, interrupt, rationalize, hypothesize or refer back again to anything at all you’ve claimed. 

Alternatively, your lover trusts in your inherent wisdom of your own condition and affirms that you are good and you are clever. That you will usually come across the remedy to whichever it is you are performing on.

The notion of listening like this is unusual to lots of men and women, as even in our closest and most comfy friendships there is normally some back and forth or relating this sort of as “When I went through some thing very similar, this is what worked…” 

That strategy, of class, absolutely has its position, but as I figured out myself, Listening Time is following degree. I have located it integral to surviving the myriad problems parenting supplies.

It’s prevalent for men and women to will need a very little assistance acquiring heading when they start out with Listening Partnerships. Just one way to do this is by imagining what lifestyle was like when you were your child’s age. My Listening Partner advised I attempt it, but I didn’t seriously get how it would get the job done. 

Then I located myself giving it a shot on a relatives trip. 

How my individual encounters impacted elevating my mini me youngster

By that issue, my mini-me kid was 7, and I was locating it harder than at any time to dad or mum her in general. It was at that stage she had begun to be affected a lot more by her peers and she experienced turn into more and extra robust in herself. All the things felt challenging.

And then my other kid started fighting back. All of a sudden we had double the upsets. Considering the fact that we ended up on a excursion, we have been in quite near quarters with my total household. It felt like each and every 1 of them was blaming all the hitting and kicking on my mini-me. There have been two roles rising and currently being cemented—one of instigator and one of victim. 

To be trustworthy, I felt the same way!

I felt so mad. All these years of railing on her sibling experienced ultimately resulted in our commonly relaxed little pacifist boy or girl placing back.

But something else dawned on me. 

My mini me baby had no-1 on her facet. Such as me.


My mini me kid had no-a single on her aspect

So I went to the Hand In Hand Parenting Fb website page and observed an unexpected emergency Listening Spouse in the proper timezone and I figured I would give this principle of revisiting my childhood a go.

My recollections of childhood are vague at very best. But when I did wind the clock again, I understood my next sibling was born the year I turned 7. Before long immediately after, my grandma died overseas and my mum experienced to go away us all for a full thirty day period. She took the little one with her, but we stayed dwelling. 

In the meantime, I did something I felt very ashamed of at university and that I carried with me for years afterward. 

Aged ordeals led me to new compassion

I utilized the listening session to operate by means of that incident. Just after processing what I had gone as a result of at the time, I was all of a sudden capable to experience a deep and overall compassion for the kid I was. 

The poor matter! 

My conduct experienced been a crystal clear SOS, but back again then, management and punishment were the go-to responses. No a single took into thought anything else that was likely on for me, and I picked up a deep sense of shame that I ongoing to have for lots of years. Immediately after this Listening session, I lastly felt freed of it.

No ponder I was finding it difficult to dad or mum my seven-year-old.

Deep-down, parenting her had reminded me of 1 of the worst periods of my lifestyle. A person of the very first situations I experienced internalized that I was a “bad kid”. It was a time I had felt that no-one particular would enable me. 

My child’s conduct was an SOS

Immediately after this listening session I last but not least felt totally free of that.

I now understood why it felt tough to dad or mum my mini-me kid, especially at that age. In fact, I realized that the really hard pieces in parenting for me had been normally about my possess discomfort. My very own aged messaging having in the way of the remarkable applications I’d learned as a result of Hand in Hand. 

I could see it was happening below too!

The soreness of the condition reminded me of my have childhood and blocked me from responding to my child with the empathy, compassion and understanding I had so desperately required. 

Alternatively, earlier messages rang distinct in my mind and informed me: 

  • “Get this child beneath handle!”
  • “They have to have self-discipline!” 
  • “If you let issues preserve likely this way you will by no means have control!” 

Control is not the reply

Here’s the matter. We just cannot have an reliable partnership wherever regulate is our target and without an reliable romance, we can’t foster link, which is the key to flourishing as human beings. The reward is that through relationship we in fact do locate cooperation. 

Immediately after the listening session, I could see evidently that my child’s habits was a simply call for me to see she was battling. It was not about me at all.

When I went back again to my seven-year-previous with that compassion, I was capable to be their 1 advocate. When I was ready to see through the fog of my anger, damage and aggravation, I was able to far better speak up for her.

I was able to aid other family associates see what styles had been emerging, and how we were essentially fortifying them alternatively of dissolving them.

My journey of self-appreciate stared right here

Listening Time was exactly where I started off my journey of self-adore. 

I have applied it to brainstorm what I can do to promote it in myself, areas exactly where I’ve lost my really like of self, how I can regain it and why it is so vital for me to do this. I want for my small children to have a deep enjoy of themselves and I know modeling this genuinely for them is crucial. Or at least being straightforward about it even now getting a journey for me.

Listening Time is also exactly where I unpack the reality that my little one is not actually me. They may possibly remind me of parts of myself that scare me. I may perhaps from time to time experience like I am debating myself. Or lament that the apple has not fallen considerably from the tree. But they have other things to their identity that are not at all like I was. For case in point, they do pretty very well in a school setting and a trainer would not have a clue who on earth this post is about!

If you have a baby who is comparable to you, whose behaviors you come across really hard to take care of, checking out how all those similarities may be triggering for you could be handy. 

Make compassion, not comparison

Special Time is one more resource that I identified useful in parenting my mini-me. Exclusive Time is a single-on-one engage in time where by you set a timer, make it possible for your little one to lead and you just DELIGHT in them without distraction. If your thoughts wanders, you bring it again to your beloved little one in entrance of you and how substantially you adore them. Get a totally free guidebook to Specific Time.

Sometimes it helped me to bear in mind them as a babe in arms and all those gushy emotions holding them made me feel. When I was delighting in them I was entirely concentrated on them, so I celebrated their traits as their very own alternatively of drawing comparisons to myself. 

This was also a way for my little one to fill their cup whole with my heat and notice, when they experienced me all to them selves. Obtaining this opportunity is really vital and is a superior way to ease sibling rivalry and other fears and insecurities.

Use these techniques once again and once more as your kid grows

This self adore journey will constantly be anything I revisit time and time all over again by way of Listening Partnerships, in particular as my little one receives older and the fears and stakes of the teen a long time loom larger sized. 

Listening Time is the a person tool I can rely on to usually give me with particularly what I need, even when I am not certain of particularly what that is. 

By means of listening I am reminded that both equally myself and my child have deep empathy, a powerful feeling of correct and incorrect and will converse up when we want to.

I also remind myself that I have witnessed this youngster develop into an amazing human remaining, separate from me and with quite a few strengths that I could only desire of. 

I have seen them go in the environment in a way that awes and impresses me and makes me really feel blessed and honored to have a essential role in this journey.

I will retain doing the job on loving me and I will never ever end loving her.

Are you increasing a “mini-me”?

Use these questions and methods to hold your marriage with your miniature you solid and rooted in connection. 

  1. Revisit what was happening for you when you have been the age your little one is now. What messages did you acquire or want to obtain? How can you experience compassion for the little one you ended up? Repeat this any time you enter a phase that feels especially tricky with your child and see what you uncover.
  2. In hard times (or just later on) picture keeping your child when they were being youthful. Concentrate on all that you admired and dreamed for them. 
  3. What areas of on your own have you experimented with to cover? Are you trying to defend and guard your baby from the exact same attributes or features? How can you arrive to celebrate them? What would you have liked to have heard about them as a little one?
  4. Make a checklist of the methods you are very similar and the strategies you are diverse. What do you admire about each and every?
  5. In periods of battle or tension, we can generally default to comparisons and aged messaging relevant to us, relatively than see our child’s expertise as their possess. In the course of their upsets, listen and keep the thought that they are fantastic and will determine items out in their very own way. This aids retain your interest focused on your child.  
  6. Commit time undertaking Exclusive Time the place you can delight and pay consideration to precisely what your youngster is doing in the moment and delight in what they want to share with you. 



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