I feel like a failure as a parent. I know that I am being very hard on myself, but I know I can sometimes be a very distant dad. I’m beginning to see the impact in my kids’ report cards. The word confidence kept coming up and it wasn’t in a positive way. I know that my sometimes erratic behaviour causes everyone a lot of stress and sometimes I overreact to simple things and I can be confident in claiming that this has a very adverse effect on not only my kids, but my wife as well. She has a lot on her plate with me starting school. She will be the only one working full time and will be having to put up with me doing homework all the time while the kids fight for attention. I will need to find some part time work (if any of you know anyone…) to help pay the bills. All of this will last at least 5 years. I realize now just how selfish I can be and how that is keeping me from being a good role model for my kids. As much as my low self esteem tells me that my family thinks I’m a loser, I know my kids look to me for guidance and reassurance. I have not stepped up to the plate nearly enough and allow video games to do most of the raising for me. Now there are two directions I can take here: feel sorry for myself and continue down this road or “take the bull by the horns” and make a conscious effort to change. The correct answer is blatantly obvious here, but it is also the one that requires work and rising above what my depressed mind tells me. My brain is constantly telling me that I’m not good enough or that i can’t do it. It’s like a broken record in my head. “Why are you even trying, Ryan?”, “You aren’t worth their time, Ryan”, “you should kill yourself, Ryan, you’d make everyone much happier.” Lies. Horrible, persuading lies.
I need to start by taking more of an interest in what they love. I had a great conversation with my oldest daughter about a comic book she is making. It’s a Star Wars one with the characters being kids from her class. She wanted help with her story so I gave her some pointers and she excitedly went to work. It’s pretty cool when those connections happen; I need to make them more often.