It’s fab to welcome my pal, bestselling author and blogger Matt Coyne who is sharing an extract from his brilliantly wee-your-pants funny book Dummy: The Comedy and Chaos of Real-Life Parenting. You can also enter to win a copy of his must-have book too. I have 3 to giveaway along with some Man Vs Baby merchandise too! Good luck!
Extract from ‘Dummy’
Chapter 10 – Judgements and Revelations
Of all the many reasons I have heard for why I’m a bad parent the ‘age’ one is the most interesting, and it’s also the one I hear most often. Just to clarify I’m forty-two. I’m not the same age as Yoda, I’m not sat at home watching Murder, She Wrote with a blanket on my legs, banging on about the war. But, for a sizeable number of commentators, forty seems to be some sort of cut-off point, beyond which apparently you’re just too close to death to be a parent.
I even had a woman commenting that forty was definitely too old to be a parent because ‘As a teacher’, she’d seen the heartbreak caused ‘when an older parent dies, leaving the school-age child devastated.’ Well, I hope this woman doesn’t teach f****** maths. Because, by my reckoning, if I live to the average age of eighty-five, Charlie will be forty-odd by the time I cark it. So if he’s still in school and in short trousers then, he’s got bigger problems.
The truth is that, as a parent, there is no escape from petty judgements. For these people, I am too old to be a good dad and (whilst you may be in the flush of youth) for these broken, bitter few you will no doubt be too young, or too poor, too easy-going or too cautious, too married, too unmarried, too gay, too mumsy or too unmumsy, too disorganised or too obsessive, maybe you work or maybe you don’t work, etc., etc. No one is immune. Make no mistake, someone somewhere thinks you are a bad parent.
Not to worry.
The logic of most of these opinions is enough to make your brain cry. And if you come across someone who measures a parent not by their care and love, but by their age, gender, bank balance, sexuality, whether their child is IVF, or whatever, then you’re most likely dealing with a dribbling idiot, a person capable of all the considered thoughtfulness of a potato.
These attitudes seem like simplistic views of parenthood, but the really idiotic thing? The truth is actually so much more simple and every shred of evidence proves it: all of this stuff is irrelevant. If you love and care about your kid, the chances are that they will become the best of you. If you don’t, they won’t.
So link arms with the bad parent to your left, take the hand of the sh**** parent to your right, and with one voice tell the ‘someone somewhere’s that they are welcome to go f*** themselves. And as for Greg, you, sir, can kiss my ageing balls.
Ends 1st September 2017.
No cash alternative.
If the winners don’t respond within 7 days of the email being sent, new winners will be randomly selected.