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Friday, March 11, 2005

Parenting Paranoia

The one thing I worry about above everything else is that Rip will grow up to be shy. I strongly believe above all else that social skills are essential in getting on in life. I don't consider myself to be intellectual or particularly academic individual, but what I do have in brains is backed up with an ability to talk to anyone about anything. That is why I have friends, a wife, a job, etc, etc. He seems to be sociable with other babies :) and I have never seen him cry because of being held by someone new. So far so good.

Also, I wonder sometimes, "am I a crap parent?". Then I say to myself - "Everyone must think that", then I realise that crap parents probably justify their crap parenting using the same logic. The reason I have thought that I am a crap parent recently is I feel I am a little bit too exciting with him. I bounce him around and tickle him and he laughs and giggles so much that hiccups usually follow (which he also finds hilarious). I am very very careful with him but sometimes I take him by surprise, go "boo" when he wasn't expecting it, or maybe laugh out loud too close to him. Then my heart sinks as his eyes slowly turn into tight crescents, his chin starts wobbling and his little quiet (real) cry starts, sometimes I can rescue the situation with a hug, sometimes the tears start. Hell, it's not like I am beating him or anything, I know I am being over sensitive, he loves playing with me and gets frustrated if I don't bounce him up and down or give him attention, but then maybe I should treat him more like a baby and less like a little boy.

These points are related, I worry that my playful parenting might make him reclusive. You would think it should bring out the playful and outgoing side of him, but conversely it could do the opposite couldn't it? Seems like a risky experiment in infant psychology if I am wrong. I guess I will just have to stop second guessing every little aspect of my parenting and just get on with it, in which case please disregard everything I just said :) - Paranoid Parent


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