As a typical Western society, we are obsessed with perfection. No matter what the situation may be, we always want to win, to achieve. Our social media is constantly being populated with stories of achievement, of reaching goals, of becoming more and more perfect.
Is this realistic? Is this helpful? I’m here to tell you that you, your child, your family does not have to be perfect, does not have to achieve anything in particular to be happy. Often, as parents of children with special needs, we are flooded with anxiety when we see other children, whether typically developing or developmentally challenged, that accomplish goals in ways we can only dream of for our kids.
I remember when I was growing up, way before the age of social media, when classmates would approach me and tell me how their little brother/sister was starting to walk, to speak. I could not share the same accomplishments of my own little brother who was severely developmentally disabled. Anxiety quickly followed and I resorted to embellishing stories so that my classmates would not find out.
It was a different time then, but the concept is the same. No matter what achievements or accolades you may see out there, your child is fine just as he or she is. You child does not have to be the same as everyone else. Your child does not have to be a star. Realizing that perfection is unattainable for every one of us, not only for our children, releases us from psychological bondage and lets us breathe.
We do not have to be perfect because…
No one is perfect!