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To be glad this apparent new trend of being a martyr has passed me by?
295

TantrumsAndBalloons · 27/02/2019 06:41

I genuinely don’t know if this is a new thing or I just managed to avoid it but lately I’ve heard, read, etc from so many people who are not allowed any sort of life at all because they have a child.
For example
the woman who doesn’t colour her hair because her natural hair colour is the same as her daughter’s and her daughter might think there’s something wrong with x colour hair

The woman who will never drink orange juice as her son loves it and she wants to make sure that every time he fancies a glass, it’s there

The woman who will not attend a child free family event as it’s mkre important her children know she is always there for them

People who insist that they can’t have, for example, a bar of chocolate when their child isn’t there unless they buy them a bigger bar

All the people who claim they cannot drink a coffee or go for a wee because their child won’t let them

Admittedly my children are older teens/young adults now but I am sure that my entire life didn’t end because they were born. I’m sure I was still a person as well.
When did that become a bad thing?

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Vampyress · 27/02/2019 11:35

The only time I have been a toilet martyr is when the whole family got norovirus courtesy of ds nursery, you know the true pain of parenthood when you have the choice of finishing changing your babies nappy or crapping yourself Blush. I eat what I want and share it with the kids, including my morning porridge if I wasn't smart enough to eat at the same time as them. My young kids are in bed by 7.30 so no chance of us eating at 9pm either unless it's a chocolate bar we stashed in the locked cupboard Halo.

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Quintella · 27/02/2019 11:42

I know what you mean, OP. I have met people like this. I do think motherhood has been fetishised in the last 15 years or so in a way that didn't exist when I was a kid in the 1980s. The whole Yummy Mummy nonsense that some people have really bought into, the idea that women should strive to be perfect mothers (and sexy with it). All meals made from scratch, proudly proclaiming they've never spent a night away from their 6 year old, motherhood being the whole identity. Suffocating.

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Blompitude · 27/02/2019 11:45

My sister was a bit like this. She wanted to buy herself a certain pair of jeans but didn't because her 7 year old daughter didn't like them. When they were staying at my mum's to help her recover from an operation, sister would ask her daughter what she wanted for dinner every night (pasta and cheese) and then they would all have it. Daughter was asked for her opinion on everything even on matters that didn't concern her or that she was too young to have an opinion on. Just before setting off for home, daughter said she didn't like a certain drink any more so sister drove miles to a supermarket to get another drink.

The daughter is grown up now and a nice person, but definitely a case of "it's my way or the highway".

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Blompitude · 27/02/2019 11:46

And of course, absolutely no question of babysitters, child minders etc., not even once in a while - "farming out" your children was totally frowned upon.

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TantrumsAndBalloons · 27/02/2019 11:51

frenchmom I know because she told me, that’s the whole point. Most parents I would imagine do what works for their family, are happy with it and just live a normal life.
Then there are people who feel compelled to tell you they absolutely have to do xyz or the dcs will be upset, making it into a huge production of how good a parent they are because they can’t have a chocolate bar unless they buy a bigger one for their DCs or they can’t colour their hair even though they really want to, and spend hours complaining about how much they want to, because it might have a detrimental effect on their daughter
If these are choices you make then that’s fine, do what you think is right and accept that’s your decision and it’s all good. But when you spend hours telling everyone about it and making sure it is known to the world what sacrifice you are making because you are that good of a parent, it becomes bizarre IMHO

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Fr3d · 27/02/2019 11:55

I got up to go to the toilet last night as usual and thought how nice it was to just slip out and go!

Ds co slept as a baby and as soon as I got out of bed, no matter how deeply asleep he was, he would wake and roar looking for me. Don't miss that all ..Not with my tiny bladder Grin

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Catinthetwat · 27/02/2019 11:57

I find the examples pretty reasonable except the chocolate one, and have come across them all often.

I don't know about a trend, but I think there has been a cultural shift towards child-centred approaches and activities. I think it's a great thing to be honest. We all get it a bit wrong sometimes, but generally I think people adjust as the kids get older and can wait, understand things, share etc.

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SaveKevin · 27/02/2019 12:02

I don't think I'm a Martyr but your couple of examples could be i guess Blush
Childfree stuff we have to go individually or turn down as we simply have no one to look after the kids. We have done a childfree funeral, we had to take her (we only had one) but were ready to take them out if they made a noise /wriggled. But she was perfect.

Orange juice, yes id leave it if its running low for the children as I can't afford to buy more within the week, so once its gone its gone.

I won't buy a bigger bar of chocolate / cake but i might save them some.

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SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius · 27/02/2019 12:25

"It’s not a good way to live, no one is a perfect parent and I just think there a some people who make a life trying to be the perfect parent at the expense of their own self."

Wise words, @TantrumsAndBalloons. I always recommend Libby Purves' book "How Not To Be A Perfect Mother" if someone is asking about child care books, because it is realistic advice from the coalface of motherhood, and she says things like 'even a perfect madonna needs 20 minutes with her feet up and a drink'.

No-one can ever be perfect, and if you set out to try to be perfect, and set yourself unachievable standards, you run the risk of feeling like you've failed, which isn't good for your mental health.

I wasn't a perfect mother - far from it. I think I was the best I could be - but I tried to find a reasonable balance between the boys' needs, dh's needs and mine. For example, as they grew up, the boys knew that I needed my first cup of coffee, in order to function anywhere near my best. I always dealt with their needs first - breakfast, washing, dressing etc - but then I needed a bit of time in peace and quiet with my caffeine, and they learned to give me that bit of space.

It does children no harm to learn that their parents are people with needs too - if they learn that early on, it will be easier for them to learn that their needs and wants won't always come first out there in the world.

It's all about balance.

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Catinthetwat · 27/02/2019 12:53

as they grew up, the boys knew that I needed my first cup of coffee,

Absolutely. It would be ridiculous to not be able to drink a hot cup of coffee in the morning, once your children were a bit older. But when they're tiny you just can't sometimes.

I've moaned about this before, you quickly find out who is in the same boat and would enjoy a mutual moan and who isn't/wouldn't. This last bit is key!

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Leighhalfpennysthigh · 27/02/2019 13:00

I've banned DH from drinking DS oat milk for this reason

How can you justifying banning a grown adult from eating and drinking things in their own house?

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Jinglejanglefish · 27/02/2019 13:10

Sallycinammonbangsthedruminthe

That woman sounds like she is in an abusive relationship with her son Shock

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SaveKevin · 27/02/2019 13:11

@Sallycinammonbangsthedruminthe
Oh my, she sounds awfully short sighted, what an awful dynamic for all. What on earth is she setting up for future partners with her son?

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Eliza9917 · 27/02/2019 13:24

Sallycinammonbangsthedruminthe Wed 27-Feb-19 10:08:17
OP I get you...I am currently seething at the new woman who has come to work at our place.She is the martyr to end all martyrs! Her son who is 13 is left to rule the roost in their house according to her,She is not allowed a drink of alcohol ever,she has to hand over her mobile phone every evening to him so he can see who she talks to,they cannot go on holiday cos he wont fly,she is not allowed a boyfriend,she dances to his every tune and she loves it.The list gets longer of what she cant do and he sets new rules every day and she dutifully follows them.I listen to this constant shite and shake my head in wonder and disgust,The latest was he had a crease in his bedding and at midnight he asked her to change his bed to an uncreased one and the muppet did! There has to be mental illness at play here somewhere either the boy or the pathetic mother I dont know which,,,Her life is crap and she revels in it with sweeping statements like "he is my life" The more the bizarre request from this child the more she moans and the more she facilitates it,He is my best friend she says ...I want to say grow up and parent ...stop being best friends and raise your son right but she is as daft as he is so I scream internally but have to say I am sick of hearing the new daily quota of woe is me.....its pathetic

That's disgraceful. What the fuck is she raising? Another problem for women's aid, at least Hmm

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CalmDownPacino · 27/02/2019 13:28

I agree with you OP. It is why I am glad I had kids before all this competitive best mummy ever bollocks became a thing.

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Tennesseewhiskey · 27/02/2019 13:35

It is why I am glad I had kids before all this competitive best mummy ever bollocks became a thing.

Give over. It's been like this forever. My mum is in her 60s. My mum was a competitive martyr. As were the mums in her social group. Us kids were left bewildered and the same can be said for school friends parents.

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thecatsthecats · 27/02/2019 13:38

It always pisses me off when people tell an OP that 'they've never encountered this, hmmmm, must be fake, you must only know awful people'.

Bore off!

It may sound unbelievable that I know a woman who thinks her and her husband have such fantastic genes that they should have lots of children, and that their children will innately be 'better' and worth more than children of others, but it's true.

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CalmDownPacino · 27/02/2019 13:43

Maybe it has been like this forever; however, it was much easier to avoid before the internet and the 'gram.

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havingtochangeusernameagain · 27/02/2019 13:46

I don't think being a mummy (or housewife) martyr is remotely a new thing but it might be that the way it manifests itself is new.

I really don't understand the loo/shower thing though. I have always been able to go to the loo, have a shower and always been able to have a cup of tea. When ds was a tiny baby I just put him in a carry cot at the bottom of the stairs and left the door open (loo was at top of stairs) so that I could see him. Once he got older, he just had to wait for me (I suppose I used to put him in his cot for a minute or two while I went, can't actually remember). But I suppose I only have one child, maybe if you have 3 or 4 it's a bit different!

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cantbearsed1 · 27/02/2019 13:49

I don't know how anyone can say they have never seen this when it is not uncommon on MN.

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Tennesseewhiskey · 27/02/2019 13:49

however, it was much easier to avoid before the internet and the 'gram.

Not really, non of my friends are martyrs or competitive. We all have our good points and struggles with parenting. Non of us take part in the social media competitive parenting.

As I said it was around in the 80 and 90s when I was growing up. Instead of Facebook it was at school events. Whose parents did more, dressed best, dressed their kids best, lived in the biggest

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UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea · 27/02/2019 13:51

I also know of parents who get themselves massively in debt to pander to their kids, e.g. remortgaging the house to pay for a bedroom remodel, fancier car etc. Not essential stuff like education.

Funnily enough they are the same people who complain that their adult children are ungrateful, entitled and won't leave home!

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TheBrilloPad · 27/02/2019 14:01

Pink French fancies are my favourite type of cake. Bloody love them. But now 4yr old DD loves them too, and they are her most favourite thing. So when I buy a pack, I save the pink ones for her and I have the (less good) yellow ones. Because although I do love the pink ones best, I love her joy at getting a pink one even more. So maybe that makes me a mummy martyr, but I'm ok with that.

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PrismGuile · 27/02/2019 14:07

Are they all SAHM? I don't know any working parents who would have the bloody time for this bullshit

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TantrumsAndBalloons · 27/02/2019 14:29

TheBrilloPad I get that. I get why you would do it. But do you tell everyone about it? Do you get upset that you can’t eat it? Would you throw the pink ones away if your daughter didn’t want it? Do you tell everyone you know how hard it is for you that you can’t have the pink cake, but it’s ok because your daughter is more important than you?
If course not. You just eat the yellow ones and you are OK with that. That’s just normal family life IMO

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