The Pendulum Swings Wildly for some of us.
Empathetic parents (and/or parents that struggle with boundaries and self regulation) can struggle with the Nasty Swinging Pendulum.
Empathetic parents want to be attentive. They want to meet the needs of their children and to be there for them.
But we also want to have some boundaries.
Parents can get maxed out, burnt out and then assert ourselves too much because we don’t have the skills in the first place to deal with the energy of the child and to teach the child about boundaries.
Parents can feel threatened by the energy of the child, overwhelmed, and put upon. And then, BOOM.
We can swing from being attentive to being really frustrated and punitive, because we lack the ability to be regulated and also teach the child about patience and impulse control.
This is The Wild Pendulum.
The resentment and energy drain builds up over time. Then at some point come the mobilization of power, a sudden burst to establish a boundary. It’s done through anger which is the energy of a boundary, but it’s overdone.
We can still have boundaries, but sudden energetic bursts to establish them are not good was to teach them.
Kids can be super demanding, which makes it all the more important to teach skills of patience, impulse control, and independent play.