Bad Mothering

I love my children. I want the very best for each of them. I want them to grow into confident, capable, happy, content and independent people. And so I insist on being a “bad” mother!

Here are some examples of my bad mothering.

1. I don’t put their coats on. I provide them with coats (and hats and gloves and scarves).I advise them that they should wear their coats when it is cold. However, from the moment that they learn to put on their own coats, I no longer put their coats on.

You'll be grand!

You’ll be grand!

2. I don’t pack their lunches. I make their lunches (although my eldest wants to start making hers soon), I fill their water bottles. I leave them out on the counter for easy access but I don’t ever put their lunches in their school bags.

3. I don’t carry their school bags. Ever. (OK, I confess I did for my son last summer but
he had a broken arm at the time).

Seriously Mum, can I have a little help?!

Seriously Mum, can I have a little help?!

4. I let them out of sight. If we are walking in the woods, I let them go off exploring
amongst the trees, I tell them to keep me in sight but I don’t follow closely behind.
5. I let them fall. Once I gauge that the jump is not going to result in any more than a
scraped hand or bloodied knee, and they insist that they can do it, I let them try.
6. I make them wait. If I am busy doing something big or small, and they interrupt me
with a need of their own (which is of course far greater..), then I insist they wait until
I am finished.

7. I don’t organise their toys. I will fix broken toys when I can, and I will give them aplace to keep their toys. However, any question about ‘where is Teddy/my lego/ myprecious stone collection?’ is answered with ‘itβ€˜s your toy, you tell me’.

8. I break the rules. For example – all meals are at the table, except for today when we will have our pizzas under this camp we made!

With the time pressures and constant bombardment of fear by the media we tend to over think our parenting and can end up doing too much for our children which we think is helping but will ultimately hinder their development. So as Victorian as some of these practices may seem I do them for a very good reason!

Keeping her balance...I hope!

Keeping her balance…I hope!

To encourage independent thinking, and build self esteem. Because I want them to develop good reflexes and instincts, and because I want them to learn their own boundaries and when itβ€˜s okay to break boundaries. Who knows, it might even work! πŸ˜‰

Do you practice ‘bad’mothering too?

Thanks for reading

I originally wrote this post for MummyPages, why not pop over there for a look-see?


14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Olivia FitzGerald
    Jan 28, 2015 @ 13:51:39

    Oh wow, Just realised I’m a slave to my children. Will be adopting lots of these from right now. Thanks! (nearly finished my link by the way. Should publish it later today :))


    • BabySteps
      Jan 28, 2015 @ 17:38:12

      There is a method to my madness, I swear I am not just an incredibly lazy person! πŸ˜‰ Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment!
      looking forward to reading your mindfulness post.


  2. Trackback: Irish Parenting Bloggers | Bad Mothering
  3. tric
    Jan 30, 2015 @ 12:53:38

    This is even more true when they get older, washing clothes, ironing (especially boys) and cooking their own meals.
    Needless to say I do indeed practice ‘bad mothering’.
    I think you’re children will grow up “well able”, as they say!


    • BabySteps
      Jan 31, 2015 @ 00:14:04

      Thank you for that, there are times when I feel judged but I am going to continue being ‘old school’ for their sake! My son is the most fastidious by far, let’s hope it stays that way ☺


  4. mind the baby
    Jan 30, 2015 @ 13:28:08

    I think every single one of those is the exact opposite to bad mothering! Great post!


  5. Lisa |
    Jan 30, 2015 @ 13:57:03

    Sounds like some great mothering to me! πŸ™‚


  6. emilyatthenest
    Jan 30, 2015 @ 22:12:50

    I echo what everyone said! Great post, great mothering πŸ™‚


  7. Trackback: Best Post | BabySteps

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