Smiling like Sunshine: An open letter to my children

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

An open letter to my children

Welcome to the July Carnival of Natural Parenting: Parenting Philosophy
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have shared their parenting practices and how they fit in with their parenting purpose. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.
My beautiful children,
I decided to  parent you this way long before you were born. I decided to try for a natural birth. I decided to breastfeed and let you self wean as I think this is good for you both mentally and physically. I decided to cosleep as I believe babies need close contact with their carers.
I never let you cry it out. Not only because it is scientifically proven to be harmful but also because I just can't let anyone cry it out. I carried you until you were willing to explore the world all by yourselves and I enjoyed feeling you snugly. I chose to be gentle when it comes to discipline.
I am not saying this is the best way to parent but attachment parenting philosophy was close to my heart and I chose it.
I would love you to be well -adjusted and happy people when you grow up. I would love you to be contented people in whatever path you choose in life and I want you to know that mummy and daddy will always be here to support you.  I communicate with you respectfully and I want you to feel safe in our relationship. I want you to know that you are loved unconditionally  and will always be, no matter what.
I want you to live a carefree childhood. I want you to be surrounded with nature, books, art supplies and toys that sparkle your imagination. I want you to use your imagination, to dance, to laugh, to act silly.
I want you to know you are individuals just like grown-ups and you can have your say to some extent. If   you  think your spotty red shirt matches with your colourful stripey jogging bottoms, I will let you wear that.
It is always okay to be a little bit crazy ;)
We live abroad, away from family support. At times mummy finds it incredibly hard to meet the needs of you two. It's not always rosy and I do raise my voice, lecture or scold, sometimes more than I would like to, especially between 5-7pm, when everyone is grumpy and tired.
When you say you are cross with me, I tell you that it is okay to be cross. I want you to know that your feelings are okay and it is good to speak about them. I also tell you that mummy can get upset or angry too as we are only human, but that I will always love you. I try to foster closeness and connection after those tough moments. I try hard to be a more playful parent.
The early years are hard on us parents, but it does pay off as you grow and I am so happy to see that.
I love exploring the world and growing up with you and cannot wait for the adventures that await us in the future.


  1. What a lovely letter to your children! I love the thought of our kids reading a declaration like this at some point down the road and knowing what was in our hearts, and how special they were to us and why we chose to raise them this way. Thank you for the inspiration!

  2. It's so important to know *why* we're choosing the way we parent - it sounds like you know exactly that. A letter any child would love to read from their parent :)

  3. So sweet! I picture your children reading this letter as an adult when they have their own small children and what a treasure that will be!

  4. What a wonderful letter! Very inspiring too! Your blog is also wonderful. I have been enjoying looking around! I'm following!


  5. "It's okay to be cross." That is one thing I wish I had been told as a child, and one thing I make sure my son knows. He's only 15 months now, but sometimes he does throw a fit when he can't have something he wants. I just tell him, "It's okay, crying is an option too." I'm there for him if he wants a hug, but if he just wants to throw himself on the floor and scream, I try to respect that. Oddly enough, it seems to be just what he needs -- a minute or two of hollering and he calms down and comes over for a hug.

    Great letter.

  6. It's so special to communicate love and the reasons why you chose how to parent. That kind of example leads the next generation to parent the same way.

  7. This is exactly how I feel about my children, and how I hope that they will see me as they grow. You're right, "it's not always rosy"! And I empathize about being away from family support. . . though we are not abroad, Texas is a long way from Maine! Thanks for sharing! It's so nice to share ideas with moms that feel the same way I do about mothering :)

  8. This is beautiful! I imagine your children will cherish this when they're adults. I can feel the warmth and love just from reading it without even knowing you or your little ones.

    Btw, we have the same "not always rosy" period between 5-7pm in our house! I call it the "witching hour" and it's definitely a big challenge for me, too.

  9. Ha! Syliva - I call it the 'witching hour' too!

    Your blog post jumped out at me from the carnival list and I'm glad I stopped by. I too dearly want to go and write my 'open letter' now. A wonderful idea. Thank you for sharing.

  10. Thanks for all the lovely comments,I LOVE this carnival :)


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