Wednesday, May 14, 2014

{Motherhood} Who has the worst kids?

The tongue has the power of life and death - Proverbs 18:21

If I'm perfectly honest I don't remember much from our pre-marital counselling sessions. Something was said about money and kids but I was too distracted by my fiance and my sparkly new engagement ring. The one thing I do remember though was the advice to never publically disparage or speak badly of my husband.
It made so much sense to me because I was always able to imagine how gutted I would feel if I ever overheard JR mocking me with his friends or on Facebook - it would devastate me! If anyone has my back, I would expect it to be my husband. And vice versa.

When I was a new mum I absolutely loved being a mother and I was always so disheartened by the culture among mums of complaining about all the horrid things their kids did and joking about offering them up for sale. Add a decade, 4 more kids, a mammoth workload and I too have added my exhausted, jaded and far less idealistic voice to that culture. Sure, it's understandable but it doesn't make it OK and a personal paradigm shift is well overdue.
It's a damaging lie to think that by disparaging my children I will make the other mother feel better about her kids, because the truth is I'm not only exposing my kids when they aren't at an age to defend themselves, I'm also giving the other mother permission to try and say something worse about her kids to make me feel better about mine. 
And on it goes - one-upmanship and trash talking our most precious taonga.

I want to make the same commitment to my children I made to my fiance. And I don't mean always sounding like my kids are perfect, (they aren't and there is always a time to empathise and offer advice) but I do mean being careful to speak about them more respectfully in conversations with other mums.

These kids need to know that if anyone's got their back, it's their mum.
Does that make sense?
Will you hold me to it?
Will you join me?


  1. yes, I'm in. I agree wholeheartedly :)

  2. Ahhhhhh I've been thinking a lot about this lately and you nailed it for me. Thanks for voicing this. I'm going to do this too. Remind me of it if you will! x

  3. GREAT post!!! I totally agree with you! Thanks for posting xx

  4. I've been reading your blog for a while but never commented. But this post has me nodding my head so much!
    I'm always horrified when I see people badmouthing their children online. I only post things about my children if I'd be happy for them to read it. If something were to happen to me, they would only really know how I felt about them by what I've written. I'd hate for them to think I felt they were a burden!

  5. I've always held this as a value both for my kids and my hubby. It's a battle though because the kiwi culture seems to do the complete opposite. I want my kids to grow up with a sense that I adore them and if I have a problem with their behaviour I will talk to them about it. It breaks my heart when I hear some of the things people say about their kids, in their hearing. The other verse I remember in this context is 'love covers over a multitude of sins' - as in you cover and protect those you love by not exposing them.... long answer is totally with you sister!!!

  6. Great post Dee, I love it and it's a great reminder, so thanks!!

  7. This is such a timely reminder, thanks! I'm always secretly surprised when people talk about how excited they are that school holidays are ending, or joke about chopping them up into little pieces .... sometimes when they're in earshot! I struggle with my 3 in many many ways and am sometimes desperate for a break, especially now we're homeschooling, but I also try really hard to show them I respect and value them as equal in importance to us adults. Thanks dee xx

  8. thank you for those words. in the heat of every day struggles I seem to have neglected this commitment here and there. and being reminded by you, it made me clear how wrong this was. I am not angry, as I am a human being, but readjusted my behaviour. now, handling it more thoughtful, I feel it is of a lot of value for all sides.


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