The Don't Beat Yourself Up Guide to Competitive Parents

Right. Before you read this. We all have to agree on one thing. In our own way we are all a bit competitive when it comes to our little ones. It maybe we raise an eyebrow when someone talks about something their kids can or can't do. Or we have a full on psychotic breakdown and tell everyone, including the bin man, when our daughter gets to have a solo in the nativity play. You weep whilst watching and whoop really loudly at the end looking smugly at other parents (ahem that may have been me). We are only human. We love our children and want the best for them. But as with everything in life. You always get one (d*ck) who takes it that bit...too...far.

We are now immersed in world of Pinterest and Insta-sham and feel pressures that our parents never felt. Sure I bet they worried if their party bags had enough bits of tat in but not to the same extent. In my day the height of sophistication for a kids party was McDonalds where you had a tour of the kitchen (health and safety anyone?) and they pretended to lock you in a fridge. Then? You had made it. But since the arrival of social media we are bombarded with images of beautiful homes and amazing parenting, ranging from OTT parties to fantastic cake making skills. But it is nigh on impossible to achieve this 'perfect parenting' across the board. No one can be amazing all the time. Bar Beyonce and bet even she's sh*t sometimes. 


For example this morning it was my daughters first Easter Bonnet Parade. She was pretty chuffed with my hastily knocked together poundland jobby until she saw this amazing home crafted chicken creation. F*ck. She looked at me sadly and said "I won't win now will I"? I was torn to: a) lie and say yes of course you will and let the teacher deal with it b) rip the hat off her head and shove it in the bin whilst weeping loudly or c) sigh sadly and say "look Mummy's just not that great at making hats but she loves you very much and she tried her very, very best" whilst inwardly dying a little. I went for c). Mainly as we've still not secured her place there and a and b may have resulted in us being on the 'not a chance' list. 

We are all ace at certain things. And you are always going to get that Mum in baby group banging on about her kid sleeping through the night at two weeks and then it will crawl first and blah blah blah. It's irritating but let her have her moment, listen, smile politely and try not to slap her. I'll eat my hat if she's not struggling with weaning or something else is not going according to plan. My son has taken to getting into bed with us most nights. We are failing at 'sleep' but he can count to twenty at two and knows all his animals so? We win at that. My daughter went to school with a really crap hat on today but she also spent half term in Disneyland. So she is in no way getting a raw deal.

This hat? Did not win.

It's swings and roundabouts. Some Mums are amazing at throwing parties and have beautiful homes. Whilst some Dads are fantastic at getting their little ones to ride bikes or can teach them instruments. What we need to do, rather than getting proper pissed off with the stuff we can't do, is focus on the stuff we can do. If you can make an amazing centre piece for your kitchen table based on the season of Autumn? Big up your bad self. If your house is a total sh*t tip but hell you taught your toddler to do the alphabet? That my friend is amazing. The perfect and outstanding parts of our lives may not always fit into an Instagram shot or Facebook status. You can't really make a Pinterest out of 'taught two year old to wipe his own arse'. 

So next time you pop onto twitter and see someone tweet an amazing picture of a birthday party for a three year old whilst all your son did was hit the local wacky warehouse with three mates. Try not to get too irritated, favourite it and remind yourself of something wicked you can do. For example I bet your bottom dollar that Beyonce can't read Brave in a full on Billy Connolly accent like I can. BOOM! Instagram that Sasha Fierce.

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