Is parenting a competition?

I am the first to admit that I am a little competitive. I have a niece who is 6 weeks older than Isabelle and although I love her to bits I do have a tendency to compare them. When Isabelle ultimately falls short of whatever I am measuring them on this time, it is not her I blame but myself. My lackluster mothering skills. Am I not doing enough crafty play? Talking to her enough? Reading to her enough? Allowing her to be independent enough? I don’t know. But nevertheless, I do it too often.

Coming to the end of a ten minute tantrum, because I asked her if she would sit on her chair to eat her dinner. Sigh.


Today after having an epically shitty night with the little one and a progressively worse morning, I posted a jokey Facebook status.

‘Anyone want a free (almost) 2 year old? You just need:

Ability to function on <4 hours sleep a day
No desire for personal space
Experience in criminal negotiations
Must be able to sprint short distances
Must have a passion for repeating oneself multiple times a day

Specialist skills required:
Cooking, cleaning, psychology, teaching, nursing

Experience wrestling an angry chimp preferred but not essential due to the nature of the role

Holiday entitlement – 0
Sick day policy – irrelevant
Lunch break – if you’re lucky
Working hours – all of them’

It was obviously intended as a joke, a slight moan to help alleviate the stress of my morning. Do you ever feel though that if you only have one child you aren’t allowed to have a whinge?

I regularly express my respect to parents of more than one, I literally don’t know how they do it. I’m scraping by on a daily basis trying to keep sane whilst raising my daughter so I have every respect for someone who is outnumbered by kids!

I know there are always people out there who have it worse than me. I know I am lucky that I have a healthy child. I know all of these things and yet I still whinge. Because parenting is HARD. No matter how many children you have.

It goes without saying that I love my daughter to the ends of the earth, but I am a natural whinge bag. I moan about stuff. I just do. All the time.

One of my biggest concerns right now is having another child. My ovaries are literally screaming at me everytime I see a newborn, but I worry about how I will cope. My daughter made me cry three times before 10am today, am I cut out for this parenting stuff? Would it be ridiculous of me to have another? Would I then not be allowed to have a little moan about it because I made the conscious decision to have another? Is it selfish considering that I know I will struggle and probably take it out on my husband, who is not as firmly in the ‘lets have another’ camp as I am?

An epic tantrum in Sainsburys, that caused one passing shopper to actually say ‘Jesus Christ, I thought someone was being murdered’. Reason: The checkout lady scanned her oat bar.

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1 thought on “Is parenting a competition?

  1. Sorry, me again! Love your FB post – I could have put it up myself. Today I put up a meme on my FB which said “Dear Strong-willed Child, I realise you have the stubborn tenacity to be a great leader one day. But right now you’re just acting like an asshole.”

    My 1st is very strong willed to the point that sometimes I feel like telling people “Oh that one? That’s not my child!” I have this bad habit of comparing too! Especially comparing this #2 with him (e.g. if people ask me how this one is sleeping, I’ll say “Much better than the first one!”) And I feel that maybe I portray my 1st son too badly – in truth, he is a spirited kid who is really smart, mischievous and so loving.

    I’m sure you will do fine with 2 kids! And I think that there’s nothing wrong with complaining as long as you still soldier on – it’s all part of managing the stress. All the best!

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