There’s no end of advice contained in the thousands of parenting books lining the bookshelves to help us in our quest to raise our kids. Doctors, academics, child psychologists, therapists and experts are primed, ready to tell us how to handle this parenting lark. Nobody said it was going to be easy, but we’re muddling through with Covid, lockdown and the work-life balance. The kids are alright (aren’t they?).
So why not look at some of the alternative titles aimed at adults, which take a humorous and even cynical look at family life. Are there are any similarities to your own outlook on the realities of parenting?
Hurrah for Gin - a book for perfectly imperfect parents
Don’t be taken in by the cheesy description on Amazon. This book smacks you around the head with the realities of parenting little ones.
Amazon says: This book is not a how-to-guide. It won’t tell you how to get your baby to sleep, how to deal with toddler tantrums, how to be a good parent, a cool parent or even a renegade parent. It’s a book about parenting that contains absolutely no useful advice whatsoever.
Instead it shares beautifully honest anecdotes and illustrations from the parenting front line demonstrating that it’s perfectly possible to love your children with the whole of your heart whilst finding them incredibly irritating at the same time. From pregnancy to starting school, Hurrah For Gin takes you through the exciting, frustrating, infuriating and wonderful whirlwind of parenthood, offering solidarity and a friendly hug after a tough day.
Extracted from Hurrah for Gin:
‘And as if by magic, as soon as Mummy sits down on the toilet, small children appear to stare at her and ask her questions. ‘Christ on a bike!’ says Mummy. ‘Can’t I even take a sh** in peace?!’ The children laugh and shout snack demands at her. It is 3:48 pm and there are still over 3 hours left until bedtime.’
Hurrah for Gin by Katie Kirby, published by Coronet
How it Works - The Dad
From bestselling authors Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris – a nugget of wisdom in the phenomenal Ladybirds for Grown Ups series. which have been specially planned to help grown-ups understand the world about them. The large clear script, the careful choice of words, the frequent repetition and the thoughtful matching of text with pictures enable grown-ups to think they have taught themselves to cope. Featuring original Ladybird artwork alongside brilliantly funny, brand new text.
How it Works – The Dad by Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris, published by Michael Joseph
How it Works - The Mum
How it Works – The Mum by Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris, published by Michael Joseph
Ditto - How it Works - The Grandparent
How it Works – The Grandparent by Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris, published by Michael Joseph
Go the F**k to Sleep
This is a bedtime book for parents who live in the real world, where a few snoozing kitties and cutesy rhymes don’t always send a toddler sailing off to dreamland. Profane, affectionate and refreshingly honest, it captures the familiar and unspoken tribulations of putting your child to bed for the night. Colourfully illustrated and hilariously funny, this is a breath of fresh air for parents new, old and expectant.*
(*You should probably not read this to your children.)
Go the F**k to Sleep by Adam Mansbach, published by Akashic Books
Why Mummy Drinks
Why Mummy Drinks is the brilliant novel from Gill Sims, the author of the online sensation Peter and Jane.
Boy Child Peter, Girl Child Jane and Daddy have exciting adventures with Mummy. Daddy likes gadgets. Peter and Jane like starting fires, trying to kill each other and driving Mummy to drink. Written from the point of view of an exhausted mummy at the end of the day, it’s honest, it’s funny, and it’s a little bit sweary.
It is Mummy’s 39th birthday. She is staring down the barrel at a future of people asking if she wants to come to their yoga class, and book clubs, where everyone is wearing statement scarves and they are all ‘tiddly’ after a glass of Pinot Grigio. But Mummy does not want to go quietly into that good night of women with sensible haircuts who ‘live for their children’, boasting about Boy Child and Girl Child’s achievements. Instead, she clutches a large glass of wine, muttering FML over and over, and then remembers the gem of an idea she’s had…
Why Mummy Drinks by Gill Sims, published by HarperCollins
So there we have it – a slightly cynical look at this parenting lark. It’s reassuring to know that we’re not the only ones thinking along these lines. Whether or not you’re a perfect parent, do make sure you sign up to GoMunkee for inspirational ideas of things to see and do with your children – particularly in these uncertain times.