How To Be a Parent: What do I know?

You may have noteAbby Boidd that I have mocked the ridiculous amount of parenting information thrown at parents (it’s true, I do mock).

You may be suspicious of my motives in writing these posts(it’s true. I do have a beady eye on my stats).

You may believe that I am of the view that we should stop moaning when it comes to parenting (That is not true, but I prefer to call it ‘constructive philosophical enquiry’).

So why on earth should you listen to what I have to say on how to be a parent, as I navigate my way naively around NaNoWriMo?

Firstly, you shouldn’t. Not if you don’t want to. If any of what I say undermines you as a parent, makes you feel horribly anxious, or frustrated, then skip it (or at least tell me, so I can say sorry!). Seriously, life’s too short.

Secondly, I’ve realised since starting Cogito Ergo Mum around this time last year, that I have no desire to tell anyone what they should be doing. Instead I want to give myself some space to think about the demands and expectations that are placed upon me, or that perhaps that I place upon myself. And I do like an audience now and then.

When I find that time to ponder things, I try to think philosophically. I try to challenge not just the answers to questions such as:

  • How can I stop being so tired?
  • What’s the must have Christmas present this year?
  • How can I provide the best for my children?
  • How can I ensure my children are happy?

But the questions themselves:

  • Why do we live in a world that expects new parents to be anything other than tired?
  • ‘Must have’ for who?
  • What does ‘best’ mean?
  • Why am I so convinced happiness is the right wish to grant my children?

Thinking like this can drive some people to distraction. But for me, I find it oddly therapeutic.

Over the course of the next 27 days I’ll try and give you a teeny tiny introduction into thinking a little philosophically about things. I’ll keep this brief, perhaps as little ‘Aside’ posts here and there. To be honest, what I know about philosophy I learnt in the late ’90s whilst on a diet of snake bite and black, chips and cheese and limited sleep – my recollection of the key points may be slightly skewed.

But what I’ll really focus on is continuing  to untangle in my own mind what really matters to me when it comes to parenting. Perhaps what I write will matter to you too. Or perhaps it will amuse you. Or perhaps it will help you while away 5 minutes while sitting on the toilet with the door locked, pretending you have a stomach upset, because seriously, how the hell’s a mother supposed to get any peace around here?

And we deserve a bit of peace now and then, time to process all that information thrown at us all day everyday, time to work out what we think, not what we are told we should think.

And yes I know sometimes we can’t even hear ourselves think. But when you can’t hear yourself think, think louder I say.

I reckon we’ll be louder together.


A blog I go to when I have a spare five minutes, and one I find both soothing and thought provoking is Young & Twenty

Here is an extract from the about page:

“We’re forced to compare ourselves to the glamorized lives of social media when really, we need the truth.”

Amen to that.

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