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A Christian mum’s musings (and the things people don’t tell you)

todayNovember 15, 2022 27 5

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I wanted to breastfeed, not giving my child a dummy and that I would only have gas and air during birth; I thought this was the best way, the right way to do things. God however, had other ideas. I think He was teaching me a lesson to not judge others on how they parent. I gave him a dummy within a week as he wanted to suck all the time and it comforted him to have one. I struggled to breastfeed so I turned to bottle-feeding. I let other people bottle-feed him as well which made me feel even more like a failure. The first time I had to feed my son in public, I was worried people would judge me for bottle feeding. I thought they would think I was lazy.

As I said I suffered from Post Natal Depression but I didn’t go to the doctors or tell anyone, as it wasn’t to do with feelings that I couldn’t parent, it was  that I didn’t want to parent. That was the worst feeling in the world. I had this beautiful baby boy, everything I wanted, yet somehow I was feeling like I didn’t want it at all. After I had my second child I again suffered from Post Natal Depression again, but the feelings this time were not so dramatic. I was low but I didn’t have the same feelings of not wanting to parent. This time I eventually went to the doctor and was diagnosed with depression.

Anyway, why am I telling you this? I am telling you this because this is the stuff they don’t tell you. It’s easy to look in on other people and think they have it all together, to think they have the perfect family, the perfect children. I see parents turn up to school drop off looking pristine, make up perfect, looking their best and their children have their hair all done up perfect. I on the other hand am lucky if my hair is brushed. It’s not that I am a bad parent (even though I do feel like it a lot) because my children are well fed and well clothed; they don’t want for much. It’s more that I am unorganised and my children will often have a meltdown at the worst moment possible.

This parenting malarkey is hard. It is the toughest thing there is. We are handed these little humans and expected to know what to do with little guidance

My son also has suspected autism so we are going through the motions of having him tested. He struggles in social situations and will often have a meltdown over what others would see as little things. Onlookers would think he was a naughty child and that is one of the hardest parts. I do not like the thought of people thinking badly of my children and of me; after all, if he’s just a naughty child it’s because I haven’t disciplined him properly. Everyone seems to have an opinion on how we should raise our children and what we should and shouldn’t do. But, at the end of the day, they are our children and we need to trust our instincts and our gut. No one knows our children better than we do. We are the ones who live with them day to day. Obviously, there is advice out there that is useful and well received.

What I am trying to say is, this parenting malarkey is hard. It is the toughest thing there is. We are handed these little humans and expected to know what to do with little guidance, they don’t come with a manual. Every child is different so what works for one might not work for another. We need to stop looking at what others are doing, we need to stop comparing ourselves to them. We need to stop judging other parents. We are all in this together!!!


Rebecca Orpin

I am a mum of two young children, married to a church leader. We live in a lovely Devon village, winging our way through this parenting thing and trusting God every step of he way.

Written by: Steven Grimmer

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