There's an elephant in the room when it typically comes to groups of parents getting together. I'm talking about the competitiveness. The one-up-manship. The judgement.
I like to think that my closest friends and I don't participate in this, however I will hold my hands up and say that inwardly I have judged parents who I am not that close to. When my friend's daughter didn't walk until nearly two and mine started at nine months, I can honestly say that not once did I think how much better mine was over hers, we constantly reassured her that she was just into different things and I know I was quietly concerned, not smug.
Unfortunately, not everyone is like this and a relative recently confided that her best friend regularly makes digs about how her daughter still sleeps in their room at nineteen months. While that's not for me and yes, I'll admit, it's not conventional, I'd certainly never say it to her face and make her feel as if she were in the wrong. Nobody's at harm, right?
So, with this in mind I'd like to step forward and offer up ten of my parenting secrets that either make me a really bad or a really good mum, depending in where you stand!
1. My toddler's rarely allowed juice. Only on special occasions and only then with food. It's water or milk in our house.
2. I prefer my children to not have too many character or branded items of clothing. I prefer plain, neutral or non-labelled items, too many cartoon characters in my opinion is tacky. The same goes for toys and books too. I much prefer to encourage my children to embrace and use their imagination, create their own characters or when reading a book, imagine what that character might've looked like without television or film dictating it already. Typically, I don't buy such items myself, but leave it to family and friends as it's easier to tell people what they like by listing characters and films
3. I let my toddler eat some meals on the sofa and she often eats at a separate time from us. And all with the television on...
4. Toddler only wears her pyjamas all day if she is ill. The baby rarely leaves the house in his sleep suit.
5. I have absolutely no issues telling your child off along with mine if I see them fighting.
6. Sometimes I let my toddler watch cartoons on my iPad in bed so I can eat my dinner in peace.
7. I'm a cuddler, I cuddled my eldest to sleep until she was over a year and I'm doing the same with my youngest. I don't think it does any harm for your children to know you love them.
8. My toddler regularly sneaks into my bed at night and snuggles with us. I'm okay with this. Most of the time. Sometimes baby joins us too. Four in the bed and the little one said...
9. If the baby drops his dummy on the floor (indoors) I pop it in my mouth and then give it back.
10. Until recently my toddler still had a dummy at night. She still has a bottle at bed. She's three.
So there, I've revealed what I think puts me in last place in the mummy race...but yknow what? My children are clean, healthy and happy. So what if my toddler can name all ten Disney Princesses but forgets to take her knickers off at the toilet sometimes? And so what if my baby laundry is constantly piled high because I dress him so much? We function well.
Would anyone like to share their 'parenting secret'?
P.S. I swaddle my baby too...and he loves it!
Labels: competitiveness, life, mummy, parenting