Motherhood is not without its hardships; sleepless nights, financial ruin & toddlers ruling your life like little dictators. But it’s not without a few surprising benefits too.
1. You can get out of any social event: As much as we like to pretend otherwise, making plans when you’re a parent is a bit of pain; not only have you got to coordinate diaries and chuck half your monthly pay packet at a babysitter but you also have to look like you are enjoying an expensive dinner while you’re secretly wishing you were at home in your PJs. Those with children will relate. You only have to say “we can’t get a sitter” or “the baby threw up” to ensure you can get out of pretty much anything. Those who do not have children will assume you are lying – and maybe you are, because you will know that there is nothing better than getting home, watching Strictly and treating yourself to one glass of wine before hitting the sack pre 10pm.
2. It’s acceptable that your house looks like a crack-den: I have frequently entered my house thinking we’ve been burgled due to the general chaos and apparent jumble sale of toys and laundry only to remind myself that actually I’m a parent and this mess is just created by my children. In the early days I tried to keep on top of the chores but it’s never-ending. As time has gone on I realise that life is too short to be hoovering and wiping and moving toys from one area to another. Instead I just roll with the mess and pledge to tidy up in 2024.
3. You get drunk very quickly: your tolerance is so low from months of being pregnant, breast feeding and then barely going out that you have become the cheapest date in town. On a rare night out, mother’s are like coiled springs. They drink cocktails excitedly and quickly get drunk. By 9pm they are either crying or telling strangers their birth story. Or both.
4. It’s OK to have a lot of poor taste items: your children are a legitimate means for you to indulge every guilty pleasure for tacky crap. Now’s your chance to get a Hello Kitty phone case, a Lego watch and a Minnie Mouse handbag under the guise of “for the kids”. What about Wotsits, chicken nuggets and Findus crispy pancakes? Go for it. Want to watch Scooby Doo? Eat lunch in McDonalds? Wear a loom band bracelet? Yes!
5. You get your own special parking place: well, in theory you have your own special parking place. In reality you have a supposed special parking place which is never realised but also a minimum of three ready-made Facebook status updates moaning over someone illegally taking your special parking place.
6. You can throw people out of your house whenever you choose: you no longer need to worry about coaxing guests out the door as they gradually outstay their welcome. Instead, at the opportune moment, even if someone is mid anecdote, you just need to say “oohh, is that the time? we need to be up in the morning…” and point upwards to your children’s bedrooms. Your friends with children will be delighted. They’ve been drunk since 8.45pm and itching for their own sofas anyway. Your non parent friends will be equally thrilled. They have Uber on speed dial and can be in a vibrant bar by midnight away from the mess of your family home (even if you have pushed everything into the spare room for the evening) and all the drunken and emotional guests.
What surprising benefits have you discovered motherhood provides?