I hate sport. Don’t get it. I have a tendency to run away from flying balls and always forget the rules. In primary school I was made to leave the compulsory netball team and at every high school cross-country event, I found myself at the back of the pile with the smokers and asthmatics.

Yep, not my thing.

And I got through life and my career pretty well until I hit parenting land where it seems, I’d entered a new competitive sport, only 1 I didn’t sign up for AT ALL.


It’s like those Facebook groups you get added to without permission and start getting annoying notifications from. Only this one has no “unfollow” or “unlike” option so I’m stuck with it, and I’m not happy. 

And really it starts when the kid is still in utero with parents-in-law clucking about your birth plan, what’s “best for the baby” when all you can think of is how this watermelon is going to get through your teeny tiny vagina. We’re still not really on speaking terms. My vagina and I that is. Totally understandable, really.

Then the baby is born and is starts in full swing because then there are set milestones to meet and EVERYONE has an opinion.

When my first baby was born, it was like being thrust into a foreign country with no map, serious language barriers (what does that mean?????)  and really, no frikin clue.

So I relied on my friends, family, 300 Facebook groups, mothers groups, maternal health nurses and even the odd app for advice.

And honestly, it was just too much and instead of empowering me with information, it just overwhelmed.

Oh, he should really be rolling by now.

Roll gdammit!

He should really be sleeping through the night by now. Both my boys slept through from 7 weeks.

Great. Feel free to pop in around 3am and shoosh till your heart’s content. I’ll be in the foetal position, somewhere small and far away.

My son has 200 words, how many does yours?

Oh, was I meant to count my son’s words?

Missed the memo on that.

<Insert crying baby>

(Mother in law) Oh, when I had my babies, they never cried like this. Ours boys were such good boys.

Thanks. That’s just super for my self esteem.

Oh, (insert name) is already toilet trained. We did it in 3 days.

Well done.

And on and on.

And I get that we need milestones to help guide the way but at the end of the day, the number one thing I’ve learnt is that there is no normal.

In fact normal is a pretty dangerous word that just messes with our already fragile souls and throws us into a spin because every child is unique and finds their own way, in their own time.

So, how about we put down our competitive commentary, pack away our well meaning words and walk away from the net.

And if you really want to take part in a  parental sport, try refereeing a 3 year old playdate where there is only 1 sparkly pink tutu.

And your time starts….now!

Have you experienced competitive parenting? Tell us your story below.

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  • Yes!!! My daughter is deaf in her left ear and THE DOCTOR said it is now time for a hearing aid in this long process of test and surgeries. My signifigant other’s family have disagreed with my parenting choices from day one simply because I do things different than them. It has been an emotional roller coaster for me and this last episode of how I’m ‘not getting my daughter the best care’ or (with her molar teeth pushing up) ‘should not be giving her tylenol or motrin… I’m destroying her brain’. Women esspecially don’t understand the destruction of their judgements. This is my first child and I have and do follow what her doctors tell me to do as well as what I know in my heart is best for us. His family and I aren’t speaking after I defended myself from their harsh words and thats their choice. Everytime this has happened I was the bigger person. I refuse this time. Unecceptable.


  • Yes, I’ve had judgemental comments from loved ones….boy can they hurt. Can be difficult not to take those comments too personal.


  • Believe me being an Aunty can be a tough job if they prefer you over Grandma or other Aunties…..or you are the “mean” aunty because you abide by the parents’ rules and others don’t………Grandma doesn’t insist on good manners all the time but Aunty does because she knows the parents do.


  • It messes with your head if you compare your life/children to other peoples’.


  • It is a mine field this parenthood. We are all just stumbling through.


  • Never understood this. As long as your baby is healthy and your doctor is happy embrace it.


  • Definitely experienced this and probably been a little guilty of it at times. I try and put up the shit shield and filter out the well meaning sticky beaks.


  • Yes I can. But it didn’t last long thankfully


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