Moving in a new direction for parents...

“You are never alone on earth”- Oliver Jeffers & Murray, age 5. 

This has been one of the most difficult years of my adult life. Things are rapidly changing, much of which is completely out of my control. I have been working behind the scenes on fresh content pillars, researching studies on parental health over the past 3 years, and also navigating complex family matters. As a result of all of these unpredictable changes (which we have all grown accustomed to encountering over the past 2+ years), I have decided to shift my focus in a direction that is much more expansive and exploratory. So, what am I exploring now?

How does someone’s origin story impact the trajectory of their life?
  1. Where were you born? 
  2. What were your family's financial circumstances like while growing up? 
  3. Did your parents / caregivers hold stable jobs? 
  4. Did you feel safe at home? 
  5. Did you receive quality medical care as a child? 
  6. Who raised you & how was that different from your neighbor, your friends, or your other relatives? 
  7. Did your family feel supported by your community? 
  8. Is lifelong community care just as important as self-care?
  9. What are our biases and how can we approach them openly, respectfully, and collaboratively? And how can we develop a parental community that is not only tolerant but also benevolent, receptive, and supportive if we are frequently divided?

The next question I had:

How much of those details do we / should we share with others? 

I’m sure we can all agree that oversharing is prominent social media, and depending on the type of account, social media relies on oversharing to boost engagement and to increase time spent on the app. It then begs the question....

“Are people oversharing because they are lonely and lack community?” 

I’m conflicted because I, too, have a social media presence and I know the theories behind sharing personal stories in order to humanize yourself as a content creator. Whether you opt to personally share or wish not to, that’s absolutely your choice and I support you either way. 
There’s no clearcut right or wrong answer here. In fact, there may be many reasons why one might “overshare”. Some may argue that the act of oversharing is for validation or for “likes”.  Others may argue that oversharing is a characteristic of a diagnosed (or undiagnosed) mental health condition. The atmosphere of social media can feel so competitive, even contentious at times. So where am I currently focusing my energy? I am focusing on those that share stories in an effort to locate their community or that  buoy of supplemental support in addition to those that feel like they cannot share because they are underrepresented on social media feeds and in society as a whole. I want to distribute more resources in those directions rather than adding to the superfluous pile of "hacks" and "quick fixes" that are neither preventive or sustainable.

When I think about parental burnout and protective factors, one of the most important considerations is the level of social support. I want to make social support more easily accessible, more expansive, and more collaborative. I want you to feel like you have access to experts exploring these topics by providing you with bite-sized evidence-driven content that informs, inspires, and ignites curiosity. I also want you to feel like you are a puzzle piece within a large, impactful community of others that contribute to the greater good of parents everywhere. We are going in all-hands-on-deck here.

How this will all evolve…

I will still have @RunTellMom on Instagram and I will connect that with my new endeavor: @Parent.Suitcase. The brand ethos will be shared soon. More on the origin story of Parent Suitcase coming within the next few weeks…

#parentsupport #parenting #newparent #newmom #expectantmom #expectantparent