Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Case in point

I was just watching one of those Tanya Byron shows, and a young mother absolutely exemplified that thing about judgement. Early in the show (before much interaction with Tanya) this young woman brought me to tears the way she interacted with her daughter. They were playing, being playful with some crisps, and the 18 month old dropped one on the ground. She picked it up and ate it, grinning and laughing with her mum. Mum then called her a "scrag", scowled and turned away. The child looked like her whole world had crumbled. It was nothing short of awful.

Later, the back story becomes apparent and the situation rapidly improves. The only difference between this Bad Parent and the Earth Mother guiding her brood through tranquil gardens is circumstance and understanding (and in this case 5 days or so of intense training and therapy).

Strangely enough, she loves her kids and wants them to grow up happy and healthy just like everyone else. I'm guessing the mum in the supermarket was probably the same.

I should also mention that while this was a lone female parent, whenever there is both parents present, both are regarded as equally critical in raising kids. Tanya permits no patriarchal buck passing by dads.


  1. Good to hear that there is someone who doesn't allow buck-passing. When my husband takes the kids anywhere, ANYWHERE, so long as the children aren't licking the floors or beating each other into bloody pulps, he gets tons of compliments for his parenting. Pisses me off! I recently went out of town for a weekend to visit a friend. You wouldn't believe how many people offered to "help out" and "take the kids off his hands." He was wholly offended and refused all offers. We both hate the way that the bar has been set so unattainably high for women and so pathetically low for men. It's hard for us both to parent with those kinds of expectations.

    -radical mama

  2. Hmm you have my curiosity up about this Tanya Byron show. I have to start watching more TV, I'm totally out of the loop.

  3. Unfortunately I have so far only found it on Lifestyle channel on Foxtel. It's a shame the ABC haven't picked it up. The two shows are called Little Angels and House of Tiny Tearaways. They might be downloadable, I haven't looked.