Parenting on our estate

I’m not the best mother in the world. In fact, I’m possibly as far from the best mother as you can possibly get and still be outside of Social Services.

I try to get as much help as I can, my kids drive me crazy, sometimes I dislike them. I scream and shout and (rarely) swear at them.  I’m a prime candidate for one of these Supernanny programs where she finds out the problems are all caused by the parent and gets the children to realise that the naughty step is a punishment and not an excuse to sit and giggle inanely.

We live on an ex-council estate which I’m certain I’ve mentioned before.  Some of the houses are still council owned.  The estate doesn’t have the best of reputations, but for the most part, it has cleaned up its act in recent times.  I wouldn’t cross some of the council house dwellers but they’re ok as long as you don’t piss them off.

I was walking to our local supermarket recently when two women and a bloke walked out in front of me.  I don’t want to go into too much detail about their appearance as being pregnant twice has reduced my wardrobe to old t-shirts and house-trousers, plus my face is speckled with hormonal acne. However, if I were PUSHED (and I mean absolutely forced…remember I’m not judging…much!) into a description I would use the term Jeremy Kyle fodder. Yes, seriously.

Anyway, I was walking with the children in the pushchair and I overhear

“…it takes two policemen to decide your environment isn’t suitable for your children.” Said the guy.

“I know and my solicitor said it’s best to leave it because of the “evidence” [yes she did the finger thing!] they have that I beat my daughter black and blue. What fucking evidence I don’t know.” Pink t-shirt hoop earrings said.

Then they went in a different direction and I couldn’t catch the rest of the conversation.

First of all, is that really a suitable subject to be discussing when you are aware other people can hear.

Secondly, wtf?  Just wtf?  Is it likely that they have compiled false evidence to remove your children? Especially over such a sensitive issue.

It does make you wonder what goes on behind closed doors.  As a mother, I would be devastated if someone accused me of beating my children black and blue.  I felt bad enough when I softly slapped The Toddler on the leg after she wasn’t watching what she was doing and kicked O.  I didn’t leave a mark, there was no bruising and she didn’t even flinch as less than ten seconds later her knee almost made contact with his head.  So yeah, I would be pretty mortified.  As it is,  I keep expecting Social and/or the Police to turn up when I have a screaming fit.  Pink t-shirt didn’t seem all that bothered.

And that’s the caliber of parenting we have locally.  Of course they are not all like that, although there are a lot of feral children roaming the close, running in the road and then scowling at any cars needing to perform emergency stops.

It makes me think that actually, despite our bad and shitty days, despite the shouting and sometimes pinning down during nappy changes, I’m not doing that bad a job. Maybe.

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