PARENTS

Stop Judging Us! Majority Of Parents Feel Criticised - By Other Parents

04/07/2014 13:04 | Updated 20 May 2015

Do you feel judged by other parents?

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Are you a perfect parent? No, me neither. But that doesn't mean others should have the right to judge our parenting skills, should it?

That's exactly what's happening, according to a new survey about parenting worries.

It found that 68 per cent of mums and dads feel judged on the decisions they make for their child.

While 90 per cent of us consider ourselves confident parents, 14 per cent of mums and 16 per cent of dads say they feel judged by others 'all the time'.

And, according to the research by Nurofen for Children, the areas we are most judged on are diet and nutrition (50 per cent), parenting style (43 per cent) and their child's behaviour (33 per cent).

Dr Pixie McKenna, a GP and mum-of-one said of the findings: "Being a parent can be one of the hardest but most rewarding of jobs and one that causes plenty of second-guessing."

While 20 per cent of dads said their parenting abilities never come under scrutiny, those that do feel judged list their mother-in-law as the main culprit (16 per cent) along with other parents (14 per cent) and their own mother (13 per cent).

However, when it comes to proactively asking for advice on their children's health, parents turn to their own mums as the first port of call for advice for most parents (39 per cent), while 34 per cent seek help from their GP, and a fifth talk to either friends (19 per cent), other parents (20 per cent) or look for information on the internet (18 per cent).

Dr McKenna added: "While these results show that many parents feel judged on their parenting choices by others - there are also positive signs that parents are looking to each other, whether family and friends in person, or online support groups - for advice and support."

In general, parents feel that finding friendship groups and socialising their child is the hardest area to make decisions on (25 per cent), closely followed by decisions on health issues (24 per cent) and education (23 per cent).

Interestingly, fathers are four per cent more likely to worry about their child's safety (24 per cent v 20 per cent) whilst mothers are more concerned about balancing work with parenting (24 per cent v 20 per cent), parenting style (19 per cent v 15 per cent) and food and nutrition (17 per cent v 10 per cent).

Despite these concerns, when it comes to boosting confidence, the top three things that make parents feel more confident are: knowing why their child is crying or upset (56 per cent), making informed decisions for their child (54 per cent) and being able to get their child off to sleep (53 per cent).

A spokesperson for Nurofen for Children, said: "There are plenty of instances where as a parent you question the choices you are making for your child – particularly when it comes to health issues.

"We want to encourage parents to talk to each other for support and advice and be confident in turning to their GP or pharmacist for further advice when needed. Crucially we want parents to feel that they are making advised decisions that are best for them and their child."

TOP 10 PARENTING WORRIES

1. The health of my child (47.75)

3. That my child will fall in with the 'wrong crowd' (35.80)

5. That my child will be bullied (33)

7. That my child won't make friends (16.5)

9. That my child may not grow up in a happy family environment (13.10)

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