Sandie Simply Says

January 6, 2009

Guilty until proven innocent

Filed under: Spin — by Sandie @ 8:00 am
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This week’s Spin Cycle is about guilt. Don’t know what the Spin Cycle is? Visit Jen at www.spriteskeeper.com to find out more!

I think our actual assignment is to post about something we feel guilty about. However, that would take me all week. You see, I feel guilty about every little thing I’ve ever done wrong in my life. And some things that aren’t even my fault! Case in point: I still feel guilty for not going back to Home Depot to pay for the screen door we bought for our kitchen door. I didn’t know we didn’t pay for it until a week or so later when my husband told me (so I had a blissful guilt-free week to enjoy my screen door).  We bought unintentionally stole said screen door over SEVEN years ago!   Confessing it here just makes me feel guilty all over again.  Anyway, I’ve decided to talk type about some other forms of guilt.

The first is the “Mom Guilt.”  I think we all feel this to a certain extent.  We worry about every little thing we do and how it’s going to scar our children for life or make them turn into horrible human beings.  Unfortunately, I have a big ol’ heap of mom guilt.  It started when Alyssa was 11 months old.  I was going to a school for the military for 2 months, Tony was working mids while trying to pack up a house and move, so we took Alyssa to my mom’s for a few months (my mom was virtually a stranger to her).  She doesn’t remember that time, but I still feel guilty about it.  It doesn’t help that my once outgoing infant came back to me a toddler fraught with separation anxiety and to this day she has issues with stranger anxiety.  It could just be that’s her personality, but I’ll never know and I’ll forever feel guilty for leaving her.  And now I feel like I can never do enough for my kids.  I feel like I give less than 100% to my kids because of work.  I want to volunteer more at the school, but I can’t.  I want to get them more involved in activities, but just don’t know how I can fit it in.  And it kills me when I have to leave them in someone else’s care when they are sick (even when that someone else is their dad). 

I also have Guilty Stepmom Syndrome.  I’m sure we’ve all heard of Guilty Dad Syndrome.  The syndrome some noncustodial father’s get.  They feel guilty that they don’t get to spend much time with their children, so they compensate by spoiling them rotten and allowing them to get away with everything and have no respect for those around them.  Many times it results in the children turning into ungrateful brats and dad can’t understand why they don’t respect him or treat him as nothing but a paycheck.  Well, I have a milder form of this (I’m thankful to say that Tony doesn’t have the slightest trace of Guilty Dad Syndrome).  I feel badly that we live so far from the girls and that we only get to see them once or twice a year.  So, I over compensate.  I bend over backwards to try to give them whatever they want.  I pay for their cell phones.  I even upgraded our plan so they’d have unlimited texting and picture mail.  I send them $50/month.  This is their “allowance.”  It was my idea to send it.  We told the girls we wouldn’t send any other money during the year, but we still do.  I won’t take a vacation without them.  The one time I did (and it wasn’t even a vacation, it was a long weekend in Orlando), I spent the entire weekend feeling guilty that we went somewhere without them. 

Hopefully, Jen’s magic wand of forgiveness will cure me of the Mom and Stepmom Guilt.  Meanwhile, I’m headed to Home Depot to pay for that screen door!

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