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    Default Mediocre parenting

    I happened to come across this article and thought it would be an interesting discussion. Thoughts? Given it's parenting site related I won't post the link so I'll paste here....




    I think everyone has experienced the Perfect Parenting Brigade. These women, who usually frequent internet blogs, forums and FB groups give a whole new meaning to competitive parenting as well as self imposed martyrdom. They don’t just make their own baby food, every item must be organic, hormone-free, GMO free and preferably grown in their local trendy community garden. They’ve never raised their voice, given their child take away and every toy must be wooden…. because plastic is just soooo not socially and environmentally conscious! They love every single moment of parenting and will happily tell you exactly why you are languishing behind them in the Best Parent stakes.


    As a result of this highly annoying and sanctimonious group seemed to spawn a movement in the last few years to give the proverbial Bird to the PPB. It started out as a group of women who wanted to admit motherhood wasn’t wonderful every second, and that they did yell sometimes. That they cheered when bed time hit while possibly pouring a rather large glass of wine. This mentality spoke to me, the realism of parenting. The absence of what is often the fakery and competitiveness of being a Perfect Parent was wonderfully refreshing. But sadly the pendulum has swung the opposite way and we now have what I term, mediocre parenting.

    These parents don’t just laugh at the frustrations of parenthood, they actively boast of hating it. While foot noting they do love their kids, they openly complain of them ruining their careers and their relationships. They gloat at allowing their 7 year old to walk 4 blocks across busy traffic to a friend’s to get a break but being too lazy to drive them and holidays are compared to living in Hell itself for 2 weeks. These mums often like to characterise themselves as Free Range parents – basically parents who don’t cotton wool their kids and allow them independence to discover the world and thus develop resilience. The problem here is that Free range families still provide their kids with quality time, parenting and boundaries. They don’t allow their child to climb that oak tree in the back yard just to get rid of them so Mummy can Facebook with her friends under the guise of resilience…. they actually believe it.And this is where my discussions turn to the very recent online spat between two popular mummy bloggers, Constance Hall and The Notorious Mum.

    To summerise for those lost, Constance was a Big Brother contestant-turned-blogger-turned author. She prides herself on what she terms reality parenting; showing the warts and all of being a mum and wife. In the last few days another blogger, The Notorious Mum wrote a post about her dislike of the cult-like ‘Queen’ phenomenon of Constance, where normal mums who love their bodies and don’t view parenting as sunshine and roses take on her self styled Queen label. Notorious Mum also took issue with Hall’s blase parenting where she appears to have no boundaries and constantly complains about being a Mum. What ensued was nothing short of a linch mob, Where the blogger was inundated with hateful and abusive messages not just on her blog but all over the internet
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    I

    I’ve read Notorious Mum’s post several times, and as someone that detests the PPB crap, I really didn’t see it. There were some borderline comments, one being about Hall showing off her fat rolls instead of being healthy. That may well have been a low blow. But beyond that, all I saw was a thoughtful discussion about how she felt Constance’s parenting was more what I term mediocre, than being reality based. And at the risk of being lynch mobbed myself, I agree with her. I really do like Hall’s positive body image messages, I love seeing a mum with stretch marks but still considers herself beautiful. Because she really is. But to be brutally honest, I see the hallmarks of mediocre parenting in her blogs and Facebook posts peeping out for everyone to see, and to rightfully discuss. Allowing your children to run riot inside a business isn’t about nurturing resilience, independence or any other positive trait. It’s about laziness and a well defined sense of entitlement that her children should be allowed to disturb everyone else beyond normal childhood behaviour, so Hall can do what she wants to, uninterrupted.


    There is nothing wrong with debriefing and having a laugh about the bad days in your journey. In fact I argue it’s cathartic and normalises the notion that every parent knows: that parenting isn’t always easy. Or enjoyable. The issue is when those days become most days and everything is about pleasing you, rather than parenting your kids. When it becomes the order of the day for a group of friends to try and outdo each other, not with who is the Perfect Parent that loves it the most. But who hates it the most and who abdicates tasks and responsibility in the most creative ways


    So it’s with a huge sense of irony that I have noticed that the very mums who were the subject of the Perfect Parent’s critical eye, have now themselves become the sanctimonious ones. With any admission that you enjoy being a parent, that you miss their absence or genuinely do like baking for their lunches you are met with claims of being fake or having no interests outside your kids. You need to get a life and stop being so Carol Brady. It’s now cool to allow your kids to do practically anything if it means you get to sit on your phone. Because you deserve that down time from those soul stealing minions.So your 12 month old doesn’t want to go to bed yet? Meh, just chuck them in the cot and go pour yourself your 3rd wine for the night while chronicling their gall at not being tired with your other mediocre mummy friends. You’ll be high fived for your ‘reality parenting’.
    Last edited by delirium; 23-01-2017 at 10:35.

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    I agree with the general content of the article.

    It does seem to be increasingly acceptable/trendy these days to be more relaxed about parenting. Obviously a lot of mothers grew tired of the overly competitive perfect parent trend and have gradually swung in the other direction.

    It only took a few mothers like Constance Hall to be more publicly honest about some of the not-so-perfect elements of their life as a parent and it opened up the floodgates for other women to be less scared to admit they may not be doing everything right.

    As with many things in life, I think a healthy middle ground is better than being too extreme one way or the other. Yes, it's great that mothers feel they don't have to project a perfect image, but lets not take it too far where it borders on negligence.

    Whether we like it or not, when we choose to have children it is no longer all about us and our needs any more. If you put your own needs/wants before your children too regularly, chances are you're falling short on stuff you should be more attentive to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mod-Degrassi View Post
    I agree with the general content of the article.

    It does seem to be increasingly acceptable/trendy these days to be more relaxed about parenting. Obviously a lot of mothers grew tired of the overly competitive perfect parent trend and have gradually swung in the other direction.

    It only took a few mothers like Constance Hall to be more publicly honest about some of the not-so-perfect elements of their life as a parent and it opened up the floodgates for other women to be less scared to admit they may not be doing everything right.

    As with many things in life, I think a healthy middle ground is better than being too extreme one way or the other. Yes, it's great that mothers feel they don't have to project a perfect image, but lets not take it too far where it borders on negligence.

    Whether we like it or not, when we choose to have children it is no longer all about us and our needs any more. If you put your own needs/wants before your children too regularly, chances are you're falling short on stuff you should be more attentive to.
    ^ this.


    And yes, @Mod-Degrassi - I went there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mod-Nomsie View Post
    ^ this.


    And yes, @Mod-Degrassi - I went there.
    Just sayin'?

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    I'm going to go against the grain here.

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    No I'm not. ^

    Thankfully the article clarified who Constance Hall and the Notorious Mum were, as I've never heard of them, but anything that swings too far one way or the other is never healthy or realistic imo.

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    Yes I agree with the article, I think the realities of life with kids (for me anyway) falls somewhere in the middle.

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    I tend to agree with the article. What started off as the mummy bloggers deciding to just get a bit truthful has almost turned into a competition about who can do the least amount of parenting and how much wine can they drink whilst doing it - all the while complaining about the PMB making them look bad.

    I'm the first to admit my parenting is less than stellar. I was looking at DS the other night and I genuinely could not remember the last time he had a bath. And I'm happy to be honest about that because bath times are absolute hell for me for good reasons. There is a difference though between being honest, and bragging about how proud I am that my kid stinks cause it ok, cause I super love him and being a good parent has nothing to do with bath time so stop judging y'all. No I'm sorry, my kid should be bathed more.

    I'm not proud that parenting is hard. I'm not proud that I cheer at bed time. I dont particularly feel bad about it either. I dont have to have feelings about every good or bad moment of parenting. I feel good when I feel I've got it right, and commit to doing better when I feel I've gotten it wrong.

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    Great post Zelda. And I think you hit the nail on the head. This isn't about parents genuinely struggling, this is about a trend of it being cool to be, to put it bluntly, a lazy parent.

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    Both groups annoy me. The sancti mums and the way they boast about their child rearing and look down on others that don't follow.

    Free range parents are just as bad if not worse. They are oblivious to their child's behaviour and let them run amok in public. What I don't understand about these parents are most of the time they have more than one kid. If it's so bad and ruins your life/ career/marriage why keep having more?? They only have themselves to blame then

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