Yes, we know we’re not supposed to get stressed because it’s bad for our children, but isn’t that in itself kind of *breathes into paper bag* – oh, never mind
1. You’re not supposed to get stressed because you won’t get pregnant
BUT WHY AM I NOT PREGNANT YET IT'S BEEN LIKE TWO MONTHS?
2. You’re not supposed to get stressed in pregnancy because it’s bad for the baby
BUT HOW ARE WE EVER GOING TO BE READY FOR A BABY?
3. You’re not supposed to get stressed because your child could pick up on it and develop Major Issues
BUT HOW THE HELL AM I GOING TO AVOID THIS CHILD DEVELOPING MAJOR ISSUES WHEN I CAN BARELY GET IT TOGETHER TO SHOWER IN THE MORNING?
4. That dangerous thing over there in the corner
The one your crawling baby is heading directly for. Mothers operate a whole other level of consciousness especially for The S*** That Could Go Wrong Right Now. At first I assumed this would get better but now I realise it just changes from the door hinge your child’s about to lose a finger in to dodgy boyfriends, first cars, gap years, etc.
5. Whatever your friend’s kid can do that your kid can’t
Because you’re a failure as a parent for not teaching your two-year-old colours, sign language, origami, etc.
6. Having nothing to wear
You need to look stylish today, but the last time you picked up a magazine, let alone a new piece of clothing that didn’t have an elasticated waist, was precisely nine months before the baby was born. (Are leggings and ballet flats still cool?)
7. Not living near enough to the Good School
Which means that your kid will be educationally damaged by the age of 6, get bad exam results at 18 and have to do a pointless course at a terrible university, after which it won’t get a job and will be forced to move back home again just at the point when you thought you might finally get a break after 20 years.
8. The cost of university
I could lie in a darkened room for a week listening to the Great British Bake Off music and still not calm down about this one.
9. Your partner is probably having an affair
Because you haven’t said anything nice to them since the baby was born.
10. If they are having an affair, you’d rather not know
Because honestly… are you really going to ditch them and do this alone?
11. That thing you’ve forgotten
There’s definitely something you were meant to be doing today, isn’t there... Or someone’s birthday… Or some crucial item for your day out (nappies, phone, keys) that you’re just about to leave at home... or – DON’T PULL AWAY! THE BABY IS STILL IN ITS CAR SEAT ON THE PAVEMENT!
12. Everyone is going to think your child is vile
Whereas in fact, it’s a delightful child, only not used to being in a smart restaurant/awake until 9pm/given large quantities of sugar/picked up and cuddled by weird-smelling old people it doesn’t know.
13. You can’t get drunk while pregnant/breastfeeding/in sole charge of one or more small children
The great irony being that nobody needs a stiff drink more than a woman who is pregnant/breastfeeding/in sole charge of one or more small children.
14. You cannot go for a run, swim or gym class without feeling guilty
Exercise makes you more productive, I tell people when explaining why everyone should train at least three times per week. Exercise destresses you. Exercise keeps you healthy. The last time I personally took time away from my work and family to exercise? My holiday IN JULY.
15. If you eat nuts while pregnant, the baby could develop a life-threatening nut allergy
But also, depending who you listen to, if you don’t eat nuts while pregnant, the baby could develop a life-threatening nut allergy. Thanks, Medical Advice.
16. Your child ignores everything you say
In fact, it delights in doing the things you’ve specifically told it not to do, while looking you right in the eye as if to say, “Yeah, and what are you going to do about it, muppet?”
17. You’re probably stupider than before
It starts with preg head, then the battering months (sometimes years) of sleep deprivation, a whole new dimension of things to worry about, and suddenly you’re back at work and can’t remember your own email password, let alone whether you used to have the mental capacity to cope with a spreadsheet.
18. There’s absolutely no way sex is the same for him
**Reflexively does weekly pelvic floor exercise**
19. Everyone is judging how you raise your child
Your partner, your mother, your next-door neighbour, the old lady in the supermarket – they’ve all got an opinion on whether you breastfeed, if the kid’s bedtime is right, what it’s wearing, if it’s potty trained yet, if it eats enough fruit. And they’re often more than happy to share it with you.
20. For all you know, the judge-y people are right
Though it may be momentarily pleasing to tell the old lady in the supermarket to shut it because there’s no way you “missed the window” for successful potty training at 11 months, it’ll still be the last thing that passes through your mind before you go to sleep.