Friday, 10 February 2012

5 common parenting fails, and why we shouldn't worry about them.

For a change from Fail Friday, today we are talking about 5 common parenting fails, and discussing whether they really matter. For us parents, bringing up our children can be tough going. We have good times, of course we do, but we have bad times too. At Parenting on the Front Line, we accept that failure is an option, indeed it is inevitable from time-to-time. The important thing is that we accept defeat, dust ourselves down and move on. Please stay with us as we tell you 5 parenting fails that determined soldiers have shared with us.

1) Occasionally, we leave incompetents in charge of our children. For some of us, the results of this can be disastrous, but for most of us this is a necessary evil. We leave our children with over-indulgent grandparents, or with the less-experienced other half, or with unfamiliar nursery assistants. We feel terrible guilt, but what's the worst that can happen? Don't feel bad about it - little Timmy needs his independence, and your other half needs to learn to do stuff for them too. There's only one way for them to learn, and that's for you to suspend your anxiety for a few hours, and get you some 'me' time.

2) We throw all our good intentions out of the window. You know how before you became a parent, you had a well-drawn up battle plan? How many of you changed that battle-plan mid-war? I know I did. My child would sleep in her own bed straight away and sleep all night. Yeah, right! My child would eat all her vegetables without complaining? Hahahahahaha! My child would not be watching television and only play with educational toys? Give me a break. Changing your plan does not mean you have failed. A good soldier takes stock of the changing scenario and can alter their tactics. I hope so anyway, because that's what I've done!

3) Even though we are perfectly intelligent, educated, professional people as well as parents, we (occasionally) show ourselves up. Our failures are witnessed by other grown-ups. From wearing highly visible milky-vomit badges of honour on our work jacket, to getting stuck in tunnels in the soft-play centre, we've all done something that's made us mentally take the walk of shame.

4) We take our eyes off the ball. It may only be for a minute or two, but the consequences can be damaging. This is our most popular parenting fail, and has resulted in slug-eating babies, almost flooded bathrooms, and cross-dressing toddlers.
  • For a fail that we have all done, even with our eyes closed, visit Cornish Blonde. Oops.
5) Our biggest fail is that we think that our occasional fails mean that we are failures. We're not. Even the very best juggler drops a ball eventually. We have all felt desperate at times. The trick is to take some time out, reflect and come back stronger.

I hope you have enjoyed this Friday's round up. Fail Friday is taking a break for a couple of weeks, but we will be back in March, so get your fail posts racked up.

Sergeant J


  1. Thank you for featuring my silly story again! Makes me laugh just thinking about it!

  2. I've felt a bit of a failure today, thank you for reminding me that it's ok to have days like today! x

    1. It's so ok to be a failure, and to feel like one regularly. All those parents who tell you they've never done anything wrong are lying. Glad we could all help you feel better. :)

  3. Great post! I'm so glad that I'm not the only one who thinks this! x

  4. Brilliant - when I read this I feel slightly better about my parenting, not that I am not guilty of all of them but it has cheered me up! x


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