Being a parent is a daunting task as you guide your little human along the extensive journey of life. However, you may be more worried about this process if you struggle with a mental health disorder. You may worry that it will affect your parenting and relationship with your child or pass down and cause your child to struggle too. These fears are expected, and you shouldn’t be ashamed of having them. There are always things you can do to improve your parenting.
If you are worried about raising your child while struggling with a mental health disorder, consider these tips to help you show up as your best self and provide proper support for your child.
Understand the Impact
A simple way to combat your worries is to research parenting with a mental health disorder. One specific thing you should research is the impact that a parent’s condition would have on a child. While the severity of the impact will vary from person to person, it is crucial to understand that a mental health disorder alone will not severely impact a child. Other factors such as environment, behavior, familial relationships, and management of the disorder, play a critical factor in the disorder’s influence.
As long as you successfully manage these areas of your life, you can be a successful parent. You can also discuss the subject with your child at the appropriate time and place, which can establish open communication that will aid in their own understanding of the situation.
Implement Self-Care in Addition to Child Care
As a parent, it is obvious that you will need to care for your child. However, you will also need to take care of yourself through direct measures to ensure your mental health is at the best level it can be. Having a crisis action plan in place, coping mechanisms, and general self-love activities can keep your head above water as you work towards being a better parent. After all, you can’t expect to be there for your child if you aren’t taking care of yourself.
Will My Child Inherit My Disorder?
While you may be worried that your disorder will be passed down through genetics, it is vital to remember that mental health disorders are not contagious. A person can be more likely to develop a mental health disorder if their parent has one, but environmental factors play a crucial role in this development. However, if your child develops a mental health disorder, you can take comfort in the fact that they are lucky to have you because you understand what challenges they may face.
All parents want what’s best for their children, so it should come as no surprise that individuals with mental health disorders worry if they will be the best parent for their child. It is possible to have a healthy relationship with your child while struggling with your mental health, especially if you take proactive steps towards managing it. If you need help with this, Alta Loma Transformational Services is here. We work with men of all ages to learn how to become fathers and people in recovery. Learn more about our personalized treatment programs by calling (866) 457-3843 today.