Any parent will laugh at you when you suggest the idea of them having time away from their kids. They’ll tell you that they don’t have the time, and even if they did, they wouldn’t want to abandon them. But they’re probably doing themselves more harm than good by having this attitude. It’s important for parents to have time away from their kids for a lot of reasons. It’s better for their relationship with each other, as well as their relationship with the kids. If you aren’t spending time alone, these are the reasons that you should be.
Stress is a central part of every parent’s life. You aren’t going to escape it, but you can help to negate the effects by having a bit of time away from the hustle and bustle of family life. Why not go for a relaxing deep tissue massage to de stress, or meet with a friend for coffee. Whatever it is that you do to relax, taking this time away from the kids and regrouping will stop you from burning yourself out. When you return to them afterwards you’ll be revitalized and you’ll be able to enjoy your time with them more because you won’t feel like you’re being overloaded.
It’s important for your children’s development that they see you as a person in your own right. You’re always going to be their parent before anything else, but they need to see you expressing your own personality or identity so that when they grow up, they understand it’s ok for them to do the same. Seeing you going out to do things that you enjoy will encourage them to do the same and help them to start forming their own identity.
Give Them Space
People always think that taking a break from your kids is all about you, but the truth is, they need it as much as you do. Kids don’t want to spend every waking moment with you otherwise they’ll be completely defined by you. Without time to be independent, they’ll never learn to do things for themselves and they won’t be able to develop a personality separate from you. They’re also going to move out permanently at some point so if you’ve not got used to being an individual without them, that transition is going to be incredibly hard for both of you.
Think For Yourself
When you’re a parent, most of the things that you think about are related to the kids. Who needs picking up from where? What are you having for dinner? You barely get a chance to think about anything for yourself. That’s not healthy for anybody so getting some time away to think about the things that you used to think about before you were a parent is always a positive.
Leaving your kids for a while doesn’t mean that you’re abandoning them. It will give you both a much needed rest and strengthen the bond between you, so don’t be afraid to look after yourself and take a bit of time for yourself every once in awhile.