No, I’m not about to tell you that you must try harder. In fact, quite the opposite. I think most of us are trying far too hard, and that isn’t sustainable or healthy for us or our children.
There’s such a strong narrative of striving and self improvement in our culture that settling for just ‘good enough’ might seem a bit defeatist, or even dangerous when it comes to parenting.
Let me reframe this for you. Because being ‘good enough’ IS the ideal when it comes to raising psychologically well adjusted and resilient children. And trying to live up to an image of ‘perfect’ motherhood is the opposite and potentially very damaging, for you and for them.
The concept of ‘good enough’ parenting is derived from the work of Donald Winnicott, a paediatrician and psychoanalyst who first identified this term in 1953.
Winnicott was concerned about the rising influence of so called...