Are You Under Attack By the "Shoulds"? Here's How to Fight Back! by Holly Brown MFT
"I should be happy." "I should be having a great time." "I should have been appreciating the moment with my daughter, instead my mind was on the laundry that needed to get done and how to get her down for her nap and..." These are thoughts expressed by some of my clients. I've also had them myself. Not that "shoulds" are relegated to parents alone, but they often get louder after having a child. And the "shoulds" are toxic to mental health.
Whenever we think in terms of what we should be feeling, we're judging ourselves. In a lot of cases, that judgment is what produces the most emotional distress. But if we simply acknowledge and feel the feeling, generally it will dissipate. It's OK. You're OK.