5 Things Your Selfish Parenting Habit is Really Telling You About Yourself

“Selfish” is a word that we often associate with other people, but the truth is that each of us has selfish tendencies. We’re all looking out for ourselves, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But when it comes to parenting, what is sometimes thought of as “good” parenting can actually be a form of selfishness.

In fact, you might even be doing things as a parent that you don’t even realize are selfish at all, but they are.

Selfish mother quotes are a great way to remind yourself that you might be doing something wrong as a parent. Here are five signs that your parenting habit isn’t exactly what you think it is:

You like your kids, but you don’t actually like them as people.

Although you may have the best intentions, your selfish parenting habit is telling you that deep down, your kids aren’t really people to you. If they were, then they would have a say in what happens in their lives and what they’re doing with their time.

They could ask for more time with friends or less time studying. They could request more freedom and independence from the family unit so that they can develop into healthy adults outside of your home. Instead of taking some of those things into consideration, your selfishness makes it seem like anything other than what’s best for YOU should come last on everyone’s list of priorities, especially theirs.

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You’re still in a narcissistic state of mind.

But you know what’s even worse? When you don’t realize that you’re doing it.

Selfish parenting is a defense mechanism. It’s a way for us to avoid dealing with our own issues because we don’t want to take responsibility for them, or even acknowledge them in the first place. Instead of dealing with our own feelings, desires, and mistakes (and then learning from those mistakes), we try to control others’ lives instead.

This means that when someone else makes a mistake or gets angry at us, we get defensive instead of taking responsibility for what happened and figuring out how we can do better next time.

You get off on their approval.

This may be the most self-serving of all the habits. You like to be praised for your parenting. And while you have every right to be proud of your parenting, it’s important to remember that it’s not a reflection of your parents’ accomplishments or shortcomings.

When you create an environment where your children are trained to praise you, they learn that praise can be bought with good behavior.

They may also learn that they need more than just love and stability from those who care for them in order to feel secure and happy in life; they need validation from other sources as well because everyone else doesn’t have a vested interest in their well-being like we do (and also because our opinions are usually pretty biased).

It’s all about you.

Your parenting style is all about you. The child, partner, and/or parents are secondary to your own needs. When you’re having a bad day, they take on the role of being there for you so that you don’t have to deal with it yourself, they become your emotional support system.

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It’s not their fault; after all, the more basic human instinct is self-preservation and survival. Your instincts tell you that if someone else can meet your needs (in this case your emotional ones), then why bother dealing with them yourself? This may sound like an extreme example but I’m sure anyone who has ever been in a relationship with a selfish person knows what I’m talking about.

Your own needs come first.

In your mind, it feels like a big deal to make your children’s needs the priority over yours. And it is, for them. But what about you? Do you feel guilty for taking time for yourself? Do you think that if you don’t do everything for everyone all the time, then something bad will happen?

If so, then this habit is telling me that you’ve bought into some major mommy guilt and are putting yourself last in terms of prioritizing what matters most on a daily basis.

This is not healthy or productive in any way shape or form. You can give so much more to your kids if they know that they’re loved unconditionally and are respected enough to have their own wishes and desires honored (even when they clash with yours).


You don’t have to be a parent to apply these lessons. You can do this with your children, but also with friends and colleagues, lovers and enemies. If you want to be more mindful and compassionate in your relationships, then taking a moment to reflect on how self-centered you are might be just the thing that helps get you there.

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By Ahsan Ali

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