Moms in Babeland

Parenting With Joy

New York Magazine celebrated 4th of July by publishing a long piece on Why We Hate Parenting.  It is a grim report indeed, and the personal stories therein are backed up by loads of academic research. Turns out parents are far less happy than our childless counterparts, and that we’d rather be doing just about anything (including housework) than spending time with our children. Ouch!

But it doesn’t have to be this way. What’s true for me is that if I think of my son as a person, rather than a responsibility, I have a lot more fun with him. Yeah, I’m his Mom and I have to set limits, but we also have a blast together if we get into a groove.

So here’s my recipe for putting some Joy back into parenting:

  • Relax- just hanging out doing what your kid wants to do is awesome, forget the push for special activities
  • Go outside- my little guy usually objects strenuously, but once we’re out the world is naturally interesting
  • Try to look on the present moment from your future old person self, putting it into perspective can give current annoyances a luster of nostalgic charm
  • Get a babysitter!
  • And spend that time doing something fun
  • Like sex!! (of course I would say that, but it really does make life better)

Give us your ideas for what to to add to this list!

Post a comment in the Parenting Topic, send us your sex education anecdote, or link to this topic during July, and you could win a great prize! Learn more.

Plus, you’re invited to participate in Babeland’s fundraiser for sex education. Just donate $5 and you’ll receive free Jimmyjane massage lotion.

Related posts:

  1. Sex Positive Parenting Series in Seattle
  2. Sex and Parenting: A Little Goes A Long Way
  3. Let’s Talk about Sex…Education: You Could Win Prizes!
  4. Lesbian Parenting with Lauren Abrams
  5. Dad’s Advice to Son: Deciding When You’re Ready for Sex

topics: Parenting

2 Responses to “Parenting With Joy”

  1. Shannon says:

    I totally agree that some of my favorite moments with my son are those where we are just existing together. We walk to go grocery shopping and rent movies every Sunday and those are often when we have our best conversations. We also have a date that every Sunday night we snuggle and watch a movie. This is like setting a reset button for both of us before we go back into our busy weekday routines.

  2. Anne says:

    What a crock. Sure parenting is hard (as I like to say, ‘who wouldn’t bitch about an unpaid FT job’), but there’s a forest for the trees spin being overlooked, when you gloss over the moments of sheer joy that kids bring into your daily life and just focus on the practical stuff. Thanks for celebrating the joy rachel. It reminds me of this time Toni Morrison said she realized that every time one of her kids came running into the room, she had gotten into the habit of saying “brush your hair” or “stop yelling” or some other classic parent fix it comment. But she started catching herself, and reveling in the sheer joy on their faces when they ran up to her w/ something to say, and instead replaced her comment with something like “i love you” or “you’re so happy, it makes me happy.”. I never forgot that, and I try to do it! Celebrate their joy, it’s contagious.

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