Tag Archives: Argument

Why life sucks as a mother.

Let me start by saying I love being a mum, I love my children and wouldn’t change anything about either of them for all the world. They aren’t what this is about.

Why does life suck being a mother?

Because it’s the only thing in the world where you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Whatever you choose to do there will be 50% of the entire population of the world hurling abuse at you for it.

  • Lets look at just the early years (0-2) in this stage of your childs life people will be judging you on:
  • How you feed them: formula vs breast. Weaning: how and when
  • How you let them sleep: co-sleeping, separate beds, on you, in a cot, in a pram, by demand, routine.
  • How you transport them: Baby-wear or pram?
  • How you toilet them: cloth nappy, toilet train early, toilet train late.
  • What you name them
  • What you dress them in
  • How you talk to them: baby talk, as a mini adult
  • How much you have them looked after by other people.

All of those are personal choice, and some of them are heart wrenching choices. First hand, feeding. I tried and failed to breast feed both of my girls. With my youngest, I can remember her being two days old, coming in from a walk with my husband and mother in law and silently leaving the room, going up to my bed, curling into the smallest ball possible and silently sobbing. I couldn’t cope with the breast feeding. And I felt like a failure. It hurt, so much. I was bleeding from places blood should never come from. But I knew that BREAST IS BEST and FORMULA IS POISON. Ridiculous really, I’d formula fed my eldest who’s a startlingly intelligent, well adapted and healthy child. So logically I knew that wasn’t the case. But neither the midwives or, even worse, other mothers were telling me it was ok to formula feed. Everyone was adamant I should breast feed and in that over wrought, exhausted (and believe me, until you’ve given birth you’ve no idea what exhaustion actually feels like) I felt like an evil, abominable person for wanting to formula feed. Luckily husband talked sense in to me.

Being a mother people are judging you endlessly. You stay at home? You’re failing your children by not showing them a good role model. Go out to work? You’re failing your children by letting other people look after them.

And then in addition to all of the crap that does have some legitimacy, feeding there are benefits of breast feeding, there are benefits of co-sleeping, there are benefits of routine, there is the absoloute bull shit that is spouted by people.

Like this meme that is doing the rounds on facebook/peoples kitchens again:

83ed270cd5cfe30ed094b336f497f6aa

Or ones to that effect.

So now we can’t even have clean and tidy houses without it meaning we’re depriving our children.

Awesome. I can’t cope with untidiness. It stresses me out. It’s a major trigger for me. Mess and noise make my head hurt and trigger my anxiety. So my house is pretty much always immaculate. (I’m getting better, I can leave the pots until after the school run now). Apart from two rooms: the girls bedroom and the playroom. They’re generally fairly untidy. But not massively. I make my children, yes even the two year old, tidy them up. Some times they even have to do it properly. But according to holier-than-thou parents out there, I’m depriving my children of making memories?!

Personally I prefer to look at it as

  • Instilling values: they should look after their area
  • Valuing worth of toys, if one gets broken because it wasn’t put away properly, I’m damned if I’m replacing it.
  • Responsibility: I am not having one of those kids that doesn’t give a damn about rules.

So that meme annoys me every time I see it. Because it’s bullshit. Children making memories comes from spending time with family and friends, learning things, going out and visiting places. Not from running around in a messy and filthy home not caring if they’re trampling their toys.

So, so far we’ve established life sucks as a mother because:

  • You’re judged on every basic need choice you make whilst the children are infants
  • Becuase apparently if you have a clean and tidy home you’re uptight and don’t let your kids have fun
  • Because if you work you suck and if you don’t you suck.

And I’ve not even got started on the social life.

There seems to be an entire quarter of the population that are martyrs to the cause! OH NOES WE HAVE BABIEEZ WE MUSN’T HAVE FUN!

This quarter (quarter: mainly mums, and only half of the mums so 1/4) seem to think that as soon as you have children your life must revolve only around them. These mums are usually hemp wearing, baby wearing, co-sleeping, vegan, new-age moms (that’s not true, but see how easy it is to judge?!). This type of mum is the type that considers the dad to be “babysitting” if they do the grocery shop and leave is children in his care. (It’s not babysitting when it’s looking after your own spawn). This type of mum would look aghast at you if you dared hint at having your child looked after by someone else so you could ahve some “me” time. Apparently, according to them, once youre a mum, your social life revolves around the child.

I’m sick of all this judging. Surely, as long as the child is happy and healthy nothing else matters? So why then, is everything you do as a mother judged and critiqued by all of society?

I, for one, am sick to the back teeth of it. I don’t want to be judged because I’ve gone back to work. I don’t want to be judged because sometimes I put my children into childcare so I can have a day to myself, sometimes to do nothing more than nap and laze around. I don’t want to be judged because sometimes I throw a pizza in the oven and call it dinner. I don’t want to be judged because I still like to go out dancing with the girls. I don’t want to be judged because I keep my house clean and tidy instead of letting the kids trash it (we’ve worked hard to have a house we’re proud of!). I don’t want to be judged because I spend time doing things for me that only benefits me. Oh gosh!

Just because I do those things it doesn’t mean I love my kids any less. It doesn’t mean I don’t adore them. I still go in an kiss them every night before I go to bed. I still have them in my thoughts 90% of the time. I still put their safety and happiness first. I just don’t see why my life should stop because of them? Because in 15 years time, I can garauntee that hopefully by children will be off every second of the day without a second thought for what me and their dad are up to. That shy of a quick message to let me know their safe and if they’ll be back for a meal that’ll be the most contact I get from them .Because surely that’s what we want to raise? We want to raise happy confident kids that fly the nest without a backwards glance? We want to raise kids that are confident to go out into the world and forge their own way?

It’s high time mothers stopped judging other mothers. That we all looked at one another and went “cool whatever”. That we stop screaming BREAST IS BEST. And instead just went FEEDING IS BEST! That we just said to each other “hey, you’re doing a good job.” or even “well I do it differently, but I can see you’re way works for you and your sprog, so cool”. Why are we always trying to put each other down? Is it because raising kids is hard and we’re all terrified of getting it wrong?

Because actually, as long as we love them, keep them safe, feed them, instill values and morals into them, well they’ll be okay. They’ll probably life to an age where you’re sometimes nothing more than a foot note in their lives. And actually, we all get things wrong. We all do. Frequently. But as long as they know we love them, then nothing else matters sometimes.

So please, fellow mums, please lets stop judging each other. You stop judging me because I have a clean, tidy house, I work and I have a life way from my kids. And I’ll not judge you because you’re house is messy, and you only associate with your kids and kid friendly things. Then we can all get a long and focus on the main thing that matters: turning our little bundles of joy into well functioning, caring and confident adults.

TL;DR

Life sucks as a mother because what ever you do someone thinks you’re wrong.

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Grab your whips, grab your chains…its HERE!

And so the countdown has begun. It’s T minus 4 days until the release of the eagerly awaited release of the first of the 50 Shades films. With the date looming ever closer we are being subjected to :Hilarious Memo”. from some companies, and also pleas from :;Womens Aid”. for us to reject the films and the books.

And that naturally leads to me blogging about it!

From the opposition we have the argument that the books portray an abusive (sexually, physically, mentally, financially and verbally) relationship. And that reading it and watching it endorses the  view that this type of relationship is OK. They’re also worried about the impact this could have on viewers, it could be triggering, it could encourage them to stay in abusive relationships (a blockbuster says that what they’re darling partner is doing is fine and normal!), could reaffirm the abusers belief that they’re right, or that maybe young people with less experience could deem this as a normal relationship. It’s understandable why the advocates of Womans Rights movements, and women refuges are claiming these things. Really it is. It’s their job to be concerned. And out of context yes the relationship is abusive. And the first time I read the books I was appalled at what I was reading. (Quite aside from the appalling repetition and grammar!) Out of context whipping your partner is not okay, calling them names is not okay, choosing their clothes is not okay.

So to clarify, as individual items, not in the context of the book, yes it’s abusive. No its not Okay. If you feel you may, or a loved one may, be experiencing an abusive relationship please see the links at the bottom.

But here’s the clincher.

In context? They’re typical of BDSM relationships. The leading lady entered the relationship knowing what parameters she would be accepting, and chose, of her own volition with no undue coercion used, to enter into a relationship of this nature.
Wiki’s take on BDSM. And you must remember, that she used the safe word, and the safe word worked.

Now I have two strong processes of thought on this. So firstly, lets take the stance that watching these films could lead to what Womens Aid and many others have said is possibly going to happen.

Firstly, there is no evidence to support this idea. And there has been ongoing research into the effect of films/videogames/books on people and their actions. Whilst it could be linked, in the general population of neurotypical adolescents and adults whom fall within a typical IQ range, the results of psychological testing show that actually….its inconclusive as to whether exposure to this nature of thing leads people to act in that way. Done. Dusted. End of discussion no?

Because by this merit, playing GTA would increase your likelihood of killing prostitutes, or watching documentaries on war are more likely to make your warhungry. This just isn’t the case. Some people are predetermined to have that mindset. There just isn’t enough evidence to prove (or in fairness disprove) the theory.

So by extension, reading the books or watching the films isn’t more/less likely to make you an abuser or become a victim of abuse.

Furthermore, no one has only the books and the films as their sphere of reference. They have friends, family, colleagues, teachers, books, t.v shows etcetc all of which helps shape their understanding of how relationships should work. So to claim that one film will undo everything else these people know to be accurate, is to make the film more than it is.

Simalirly, I can’t help but think that to think that, is to also imply there is some blame on the victim for being abused. That somehow they’re making a choice to stay in an abusive relationship, despite knowing it’s bad for them, because some stranger who can barely write from America deems abusive relationships to be okay. That’s victim blaming, dangerous and wrong. I can’t marry the two in my mind, “it’s never the victims fault” to “watching this film will make the victim think its okay and normal” if a victim thinks what they’re experiencing is okay and normal, I’d lay my last penny on the fact it’s because they’ve been brainwashed over a long period of time to think so (even as far back as formative years, relationships we witness shape the type of relationships we will go on to have).

To finish that particular thought process, I can’t help but think that people are quite happily ignoring the fact that all the way through Ana is choosing to be in the relationship. Of her own free will. He told her he wasn’t right for her, he gave her written conditions and clauses, in the form of a contract, as to what the relationship will entail. In my experience, that isn’t how abusive relationships work. So that’s very far removed from the reality of abusive relationships.

So like I say, in context it’s not abusive. Out of context it is abusive.

My other thought process?

The book is fiction, it’s fantasy.  Simple.

And the chances of ever meeting a real life Mr Grey is slim to none. There just aren’t that many playboy billionaires swanning around falling head over heals with virgins. There just aren’t.

People don’t like the book because of the BDSM content. They like the romance (who doesn’t want to be spoilt and worshipped? Really?!) the fantasy. When they’re thinking of Mr Grey they aren’t thinking of his controlling possessiveness. They’re thinking of the way he cherishes her, loves her, spoils her. They’re thinking of what life would be like to just that rich.

So to say people can’t separate fantasy from reality is to call them dumb. And that’s just not cool. People can, and do, do this every day.

Would I be comfortable with my 14yr old cousin seeing this? Eh, depends how graphic the sex scenes are. I don’t really want to think of her growing up tbh. Makes me feel old. My one and only concern, is of her seeing a *whisper* penis. Not of her seeing the rest of it. Because I have the confidence in her, and most “vulnerable” people being able to establish what is and isn’t okay. As it is she’s too young, so she’d better wait a year 😉

So in conclusion? People are smart enough to not think the film means abuse is okay.

Now those links:

If you think you are, or someone you love, may be being abused in ANY way please seek help using one of the links, talk to some one. There is help there for those who need it.

http://www.freedomprogramme.co.uk/

http://www.womensaid.org.uk/?gclid=CK_F9Mqk2MMCFQXnwgodcHwANw

http://www.refuge.org.uk/

http://www.nationaldomesticviolencehelpline.org.uk/

http://www.helpguide.org/articles/abuse/domestic-violence-and-abuse.htm

and for the men

http://www.mankind.org.uk/