Self-care, self-love. Drinking and peeing.

If you are reading this email, you probably joined my list because
. Chances are you have found that parenting stretches you in ways you didn’t see coming. I’m betting that you want your children to feel absolutely loved, cherished, and adored by you, down to their core.

I salute you! You have lucky kids.

But here’s the rub: no matter how much we love our children, our internal state of mind leaks out to our external circumstances. 

We all have an internal dialogue and it colors everything.
 It is everywhere present. When the chattery voice in our head is giving us a hard time about not being enough of whatever the moment calls for, that judgment leaks out to others, including our kids.

During my kids’ growing years, my critical internal voice could overwhelm my desire to be kind and loving, and I’d end up yelling at my three sweet boys. Or judging them. Or being disgusted by how they were acting. That felt horrible. Then my internal voice would turn and rip ME a new one for not being a perfect mom with boundless love, grace, and tenderness. As long as that critical voice was perched right there, front and center in my head, my children and I were vulnerable to its judgment.
If we want to increase our kindness and love for our kids, we have to start on the inside. To be truly unconditionally loving, we need to accept our own needs and imperfections. We have to model lovingkindness for ourselves so that it radiates out to them.

Mom with kids walking in the woods

So what does this have to do with drinking and peeing?

You know how when you have to “go,” or you’re thirsty and you just keep doing what you’re doing? You tell yourself you’ll drink or pee “right after {fill in the blank}?” And then you keep going until you become miserable and then, maybe, you’ll pause? Why do we do that? It’s just another way to be mean to ourselves. 

Drinking and peeing can be a good way to build some kindness-muscle in our inner voice. The fact is, every single day, a certain amount of our time must be taken up by drinking and peeing. You, me, and everyone …. We’ve all gotta do both. So why not just do it when we need to instead of having these little mini-torture sessions with ourselves?

Instead of making ourselves uncomfortable, what if, for the sake of our kids, we drink and pee when we feel like it? I just caught myself. I’m working. I had to pee. That hard voice in my head pushed it off, saying “I’ll do it after recording the next video.” But fortunately, a kind, sassy voice popped up and was like, “Oh, honey! You are allowed to go pee and fill your water bottle! Don’t listen to Miss Meany-Pants! It. Is. OK. To. Listen. To. Your. Body.”

Find your kinder internal voice

As I walked to the bathroom, I realized that the kinder my internal voice gets, the more profoundly kind and loving I can be with my kids. 
The more I can roll with my own mistakes without an internal beating, the more I can help my kids learn from their mistakes without going to shame and self-loathing. The more I can take care of my basic needs, the more supportive I can be of my kids’ basic needs being taken care of.
So, when you are thirsty, please pause and get a drink. Think of it as practice for being genuinely kind to yourself so that you’re growing your “inner kindness muscle.” The increased kindness may carry over to your compassion for others getting their needs met.

When you have to pee? Please go pee. And do it from a place of self-love.
With love & laughter,


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Kerry Stutzman MSW, LMFT

My passion is helping my clients develop close, connected families and healthy relationships. For the past 20 years I have been helping people discover the best version of themselves.  Learn more

Athena McCullough MA, LPCC, MFTC

I specialize in couples therapy, parenting challenges with young children, co-parenting issues, and women in relationships.  Learn more

Brett King LPCC NCC, MFT

My specialty is couples therapy with parents. I also have expertise in parenting, betrayal recovery, and addiction.  Learn more

Debbie Bassett MA, LPCC, MFTC

My focus includes trauma, attachment, anxiety, depression, and relational work; including a focus on children and teens, parents, and couples.  Learn more

Esther Terpenning MA, LPCC, MFTC

I focus on couples who love each other, but feel disconnected and want to get back to feeling seen, understood, and valued by their partner.  Learn more

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