Published: 3rd September 2015
These days it seems, a celebrity only has to dab her eyes and mum bloggers are jostling to be the first to a write an open letter to offer condolences and sympathy. While I am generally not a fan of them, open letters are clearly mandatory in the blogging world and I don’t want to be known as ‘that blogger’ who was so up herself, she never took the time to dish out unsolicited advice and opinion to someone she doesn’t actually know. So I have written nine mini open ‘mummy’ letters to some celebrities, in a bid to secure some credibility…
I think you have lovely hair and a dead genuine smile and everything, but with loads of respect, I don’t really care that you are now a mum of two. So, while many-a blogger might like to drop you a line about how to cope with a couple of kids, I’m not sure I can sincerely do that when our lives are so ridiculously different. You have been trained to drink tea according to royal etiquette; I slurp it (cold) from a Dolly Parton mug. You have to sit in a certain manner; I don’t really do much sitting down. You curtsy; I cuss. Do you get my drift? So my advice for you is to write an open letter yourself and thank everyone for their kind concern, but explain that unlike, say, a single mum living in a bedsit without much cash or family to lean on, you’re not too badly off, and therefore, grateful as you are, you’ll probably ignore the many missives from people you have never met. In fact, feel free to blank me too, yeah?
Take care now,
I owe you an apology. It’s true I have found your earth mother views quite irritating at times. I felt slightly judged by you as I’m the sort of mum who lets her kids watch Ben and Holly on a loop, while you prefer yours to watch cartoons in French and Spanish. But I realise scoffing frequently at you for being a mung bean-munching bore who talks in psychobabble about things like “conscious uncoupling” and “co-parenting”, was also, maybe, possibly, perhaps a tad judgey too. So now you have my very sincere apology (which will obviously change your life), here are my words of wisdom for you: Maybe dilute some of the pretentious parenting top tips on your lifestyle site Goop with something a bit more realistic for the rest of us plebs? For instance, Swiss Chard Spanakopita Pie as a lunchbox idea is really, really not happening in our house, so why not list the oven-ready range of cheesy bites at Asda as a cheap and easy alternative? Or I can give you my recipe for Dairylea on toast..?
The parenting police were out in full and fierce force when you sleep-trained 22-month-old twins in an episode of your Channel 4 series with the contentious Crying It Out method. “Horrible, horrible woman,” blasted one on your Facebook page. “You’re a bitch,” trolled another. It was mean stuff. To be honest, I failed dismally at controlled crying and probably would have opened a vein if I’d attempted CIO, but I really can’t be arsed to comment on how a person chooses (or not) to sleep-train their child. I mean, who has the energy? It’s my belief if you are a well-intended, loving parent then who the hell am I to judge? Anyway, I felt bad you were on the receiving end of such vitriol and it made me realise how social media, much as I love it, can sometimes transport me back to my 15-year-old self, Up The Precinct, wincing under my lacquered fringe as someone called someone else, “a right slag”. My advice for you is to change your Facebook settings and continue saving relationships and sanity all round.
I love you. Don’t be scared or anything but I really feel like if we met, we’d definitely be mum friends. I’ll admit I’m not exactly the sunny girl-next-door type like yourself (I’m more the haggard hag across the road), but I admire the elementary manner with which you talk about motherhood. “You just have to do what’s right for you,” you stated plainly in one interview. “I can’t judge anyone else on how they run their life and I wouldn’t want anyone else to judge the way I live mine,” you said simply in another. OK, you’re no Dalai Lama, but this is exactly what I find very refreshing about you – you’re like the antithesis of the soul-searchy crap spouted left, right and centre in the celeb world. Stay sweetly plain-speaking dearest Holly, and give me a call some time? Maybe we could take our kids to soft play together or I could drink wine in your kitchen? You know, whatever…
Blimey! That was a bit misjudged, wasn’t it? Urging listeners of your local Southampton radio show to call in and discuss the ‘taboo’ nature of breastfeeding – and then proceeding to describe it as “unnatural” and something “fellas don’t like”? Well, your comments were unsurprisingly slated for being, frankly, quite dumb, so I won’t repeat what you should already know by now. I’ll just say this – courting controversy in a bid to secure a bit of national fame is never a good idea. It might earn you a few pale ales and backslaps in your local, but unless you want to end up signing on alongside a few end-of-the-pier comedians, all lamenting the days before political correctness and Operation Yewtree, perhaps stick to spinning discs during drive time? And just to add, in case this is also useful to know, Alan Partridge was a satirical character in a comedy series – he wasn’t the real subject of a programme documenting the relaunch of his broadcasting career. I say all this as a friend, obviously…
All the breast,
If I had taken a ‘brelfie’ while breastfeeding my children it most certainly wouldn’t have looked anything as glamorous as your now infamous poolside shot. Mine would depict a hunched woman in a tea-stained dressing gown slumped on the couch in front of Homes Under the Hammer – imagine a zoned-out Meatloaf with knackered jugs. It wasn’t pretty. But my knackered jugs aside, all the hoo-hah since you tweeted that photograph is honestly a complete mystery to me. Who cares? A breast, bottle, one of those weird yogurt drink tubes – it’s all just a means of sustenance for a child and doesn’t have to be perceived as some sort of political statement. So my suggestion for you is to take a load more breastfeeding photos – but lose the beach setting, straw hat and sexy aviators. Instead, gain a couple of stone, don a dirty hoodie, whip out a bap on the upper deck of a bus or in Maccy D’s, and breastfeed while flicking the Vs to the camera – then tweet all photos to that DJ in Southampton…
Good luck to you,
I am in awe of your incredibly upbeat and positive style of parenting. When my toddler jumps up and down in muddy puddles (thanks for that by the way), I must confess I rarely say: “Never mind, it’s only mud.” I’m afraid I tend to swear under my breath and wonder where I’m going to get a clean outfit from given everything else is in the bastard laundry bag. And when my other half loses his glasses, I never chuckle and call him ‘silly’ – I call him a knob. I think, Mummy Pig, you need to let rip a bit. Give Suzy Sheep’s mum and Miss Rabbit a ring, and see if they fancy a night out? Get bladdered, stagger home at 2am singing the Bing Bong Song at the top of your voices and then stay in bed until noon the next day. Daddy Pig can bring you a bacon sandwich in the morning… Oh, no wait, maybe not…
Look after yourself,
Lots of love,
“But I am not famous!” I hear you cry. Oh, but you are the biggest star of all, Fellow Mum. (Stop spewing. This is good stuff – mummy bloggers practically break the internet with stuff like this). My counsel for you? Don’t take any advice. You’re doing fine. I know you’re far too smart for some old guff about motherhood being some sort of sappy sorority and other such nauseating bumpf you get on those e-cards, so I’ll put it in terms that I believe suit us both; you’re an excellent mum – more wine?
Gizza needy like here please..? https://www.facebook.com/wordtothemothers
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