We all know that family…. You know the ones, the perfect couple all lovey dovey, great kids always behaving themselves, nice house that’s always spotless and a nice car. They go on awesome holidays and always have cool pics on social media. Some people look at them with longing of that life, some look at them with resentment, some people laugh at them because they are too perfect. Well I’m here to tell you that family does not exist……
Why you ask….
Well just yesterday I had a chat with an old friend who told me I had that family… The one I just described above. At first I was a little proud, social recognition is a powerful confidence boost. But then I realised everything he was saying was not as shiny as he was making out… He had built this image in his mind of what my family was like but it was wrong. So very wrong. Yes I have a strong marriage with my beautiful wife, but we fight sometimes just like everyone else, he didn’t believe me. My house is always clean, well there is no rocket science to having a clean house but having a wife who is a stay at home mum helps, once my wife starts work I’ll have to chip in more, that and I have already had to paint the bathroom ceilings because the paint flaked away and the house is only 5yrs old…. He commented on how my awesome car is always clean, I said yeah on the outside but it’s a bio hazard on the inside of old tiny teddies, rocks, paper and who knows what, it’s my job to keep it spotless but j have been lazy lately and only washing the outside.
He said my daughters are awesome, behaved themselves when he saw us and are well mannered and articulate for their age, I shook my head and proceeded to tell him how my youngest now says “awww shit” every time she drops something and we have been battling every since her first day to get my eldest to eat and it’s exhausting. While I didn’t go and air my dirty laundry I did tell him some home truths to show we are not perfect in any way, but we are happy, and it appears this is what he is seeing. There are days I could pack it all in, get in my car and just drive away, solitude for the rest of my life. Those days are few and far between, my wife is the same, because we talk about it and don’t bottle it up. Being a parent is hard work… No manual, no training, just lots of situations and questions that no one has the right answer for, only opinions and experience to look back on… And judging… Lots and lots of judging by other people.
The whole conversation was a eye opener for me because there are families that I look at and think they are perfect, never in my wildest dreams did I think someone looked at me like that. Perception is a funny thing, it can really taint your view of the world. I know I won’t be so fast to judge parents in the future, because I don’t have it all figured out either.