The pressure nowadays to be the “perfect parent” is higher than ever. Social media does not help! You’ll see photos of happy families taking organic milk baths together and snuggling up in front of the fire with avocados green beans and pints of water. You’ll feel pressured to breastfeed, you’ll feel judged if you do certain mumsy things that aren’t popular.
For example.. when I was pregnant with my eldest son I ALWAYS told myself “he’s not having a dummy” “im gonna breastfeeding him until he’s 51” “he’s NEVER having screen time” “we’re going on spontaneous walks every day” “I’m gonna speak formally without slipping up on swear words around him at all times”
2 years on, 2 kids later
That’s my attitude.
Don’t get wrong I don’t swear around my children unless it’s one of those stub your toe “argh ya bastard” moments that literally just roll of your tongue.
I find it hard not to laugh at myself about the whole “he’s not having a dummy thing” what the effing ell was I thinking?! I know some babies will point blank refuse one which is amazing but god I’m so unbelievably happy that my children have theirs. They could be having the worlds worst tantrum, the grouchiest day ever, or simply just fighting sleep to the point where their face planting their food. Where’s that thing?! I swear it’s much more than just a piece of plastic, it’s a god send.
You’re often advised not to use dummy whilst breastfeeding too because it “confuses the baby.” Girl you do what you gotta do. Breastfeeding is no walk in the park to begin with, the last thing you need is the baby suckling on your cracked bleeding nip just simply for that extra tad of comfort, give yourself a rest from that agonising hell!
Yes, yes I did just refer to breastfeeding as “agonising hell” you know why? because it is at times. Why sugar coat it? To begin with it feels like you’ve got a million extra sharp razor blades exiting your nips from twelve different directions. We’re told by health professionals to embrace it, it’s all natural etc etc. You’ll smile and nod because you’re the polite sort but inside your head you’re plotting their murder and working out how to hide the body. Brutal I know! Just blame the hormones.
Breastfeeding does get easier and more enjoyable as time goes on. It really is fabulous…BUT never trust a woman who says the whole journey’s been a breeze with no hiccups along the way, she’s a lying swine.
Like I genuinely struggle to understand why people feel the need to make everything seem so… perfect. I mean, c’mon Susan we all know that the second you’ve snapped that piccy of your son with the avocado looking all teeth and chirpy, he threw it on the floor and stirred up a huge fuss. Yet as long as others think he’s eating healthy and they’re questioning themselves like “hmm why won’t my child eat super foods?” That’s all that matters! It’s all about making YOU look good right? So whilst you clean up that dirty avocado why not plonk your son on the iPad for 5? Obviously don’t show it to social media followers though.. duh.
You know what? I love screen time! Does that make me a bad mum? You answer that question yourselves. Sometimes in parenthood you NEED to do teeny things in order to make your life that bit easier, it’s a must! Need to clean the living room with no interruptions or toddlers wrapped around your legs? Screen time! It’s only for 15 minutes or so and honestly, those educational games are chuffing brilliant! They’re learning whilst having fun, winner winner in my eyes.
I’ll never feel ashamed about my parenting decisions. I’ll never hide the fact that my children have screen time, or sometimes don’t eat their fruit and veg. They’re humans. They’re only just getting used to being alive in the world so they’re not gonna be perfectly well behaved green been eating robots are they? Give em a break and give me one too!
I reckon, no matter what decisions you decided to make regarding parenthood you’re doing what you think is in your child’s best interests. Our children are the happiest at home, don’t feel pressured into getting out of the house every single day! Get the thick blankets down, get the snacks out, get comfy and have a family snuggle day on the sofa! F#ck Susan.
DO NOT ever compare yourself to parents who always seem to ya know.. have their shit together and seem so faultless. You’re not seeing what goes on behind that Instagram post, they’re facing the same daily struggles as you are! (I’ve also a post slightly relating to this.. “Social media is a dangerous place” )
Anyway, the whole point of this was to reassure anyone that feels like they’re not doing enough or feels guilty about a particular choice you’ve made because lemme tell you something. You’re doing a pretty damn incredible job of parenthood my lovely! We’re all in the same boat facing the same tide and completely winging it.
Lots of love,