Parenting is often referred to as a tough job to do. Although reference to job here is metaphorical, there are those that actually think raising children is a tough obligation to fulfill.

What Makes Parenting Difficult?

Day to day activities involving children must go like clockwork. That way, parents will not run late with their own working hours or appointments. However, since kids are kids, they cannot be expected to move, think and act like adults. That is what makes parenting difficult. Simple chores or preparations get complicated, either because a child insists on having his or her own way; or finds it difficult to make decisions on his or or her own.

As children grow older, they become exposed to other ideas. They are inclined to adopt views and/or practices that run against the grain of their parent’s teaching or house rules. Such instances make parenting even harder. Mainly because the matter of meting out some form of punishment becomes necessary just to keep things under a parent’s control. Another aspect that presents difficulties is when a child starts questioning about their own parent’s inability to complete or achieve goals expected from them.

A father or mother who feels overly burdened by his or her role as a parent, tends to view parenting as a job. A job though is something that has to be carried out because one expects some form of remuneration in return.

In becoming a parent, the rewards received are intangible: a child’s show of affection, a healthy and happy disposition of a child, pride in being a parent of a kid who performs well, if not with excellence; or simply having an offspring who adores and worships his or her parents. If this payoffs matter, then parenting is not a job but more of a commitment to hold dear and take care of a precious gift.

Rewording a line of a prayer by Swiss theologian and priest Hans Urs von Balthasar, expresses the essence of parenting:

”Your child is God’s gift to you; what becomes of your child in the future is your gift to God”