Unexpected Ways My Outlook Changed After Becoming a Parent

Illustration by Kate Greenaway from the New York Public Library Digital Collection

Before you have kids you may hear things like your priorities will change, you won’t sleep for the first few months, or that raising a kid is incredibly difficult but rewarding.

I thought I knew what to expect before our son was born, but I really had no idea. No idea.

This isn’t a post about parenting or about my child specifically. It’s just an observation of some ways that my overall outlook has changed after eight months of being a parent. I noticed that I now have:

  1. Less patience for drama and pettiness.
  2. More consideration for other people’s struggles. Less judgement about people’s failings or what others “should do.” (This is something I still need to work on.)
  3. A new sense of shared responsibility to look out for each other’s well-being and safety (in some ways living in a big city conditions us to do the opposite).
  4. Less feelings of guilt for not “getting things done” — more acceptance that I’m doing what I can and if I’m doing what I can it’s fine.
  5. A different sense of humor. Kind of unexpected but after being sleep deprived for months I’m drawn to the strange way more.
  6. A greater appreciation for community. I always valued being self-sufficient, but didn’t realize how much help and support we’d need.

If you’re a new parent I’d love to hear how your perspective has changed or if you’ve experienced any of the ones from my list.


Mark Forscher is Principal of Under After, a Brooklyn-based design studio. Previously Mark was the in-house Creative Director for ABC News Digital, Newsweek Digital, and Code and Theory’s first Creative Director. Mark also creates music as Lost Waves.