In the latest instalment of the ‘How Very Dare They’ chapter in the book Outrageous and Questionable Parenting 101, power couple Nadia and Jimmy Bartel have gone on holidays without their two-year-old son, Aston.
As the Bartels relax to the max in the Maldives, former AFL star Jimmy and fashion blogger Nadia have been keeping their Instagram followers updated on their vacation by posting numerous photos of their getaway. All the while, their son has been in the care of his adoring grandparents.
But it didn’t take long for someone to try to spark trouble in that paradise.
One commenter wrote on a photo Nadia posted of the couple, “Wow how do you guys do it. I could not leave my kid behind and go on holiday.”
Another user backed that with, “totally agree with you…”
It’s often difficult to detect tone online, but the statement seemed sanctimonious at worst, and just plain unhelpful at best, which is why many of Nadia’s followers were having none of it.
One responded, “Stop being so ridiculous you dont (sic) need to take a baby so far they need their own time your (sic) just jealous you can’t do it.”
Another said, “Why do people feel the need to comment this all the time!? It drives me nuts! That’s great for you, you do what works for you and your family. As for other people’s lives don’t comment on their family choices and mind your own business! It clearly has no impact on you.”
The original commenter lost the right to the benefit of the doubt when she defended herself. “No jealousy here as we going to the Maldives in February with our 20 month old. And as for all you other women commenting I am entitled to my opinion & there was nothing wring (sic) with what I said,” she wrote.
Nadia herself was eventually forced to defend her parenting in the thread. “So you would never go on a trip without your baby? I miss him like crazy but I think it’s important to have time with just us too, this is the first time we have left him in 2 years, but I don’t need to explain myself to you,” she responded.
And that’s right – Nadia doesn’t need to explain herself. She just needs to be allowed to enjoy her well-deserved break in peace.
The thing is, not only does every parent have a right to make (legally safe) choices for their children – because that is the entire point of parenting – parents are also people.
Yep, newsflash: PARENTS ARE PEOPLE TOO.
Anyone who’s a parent knows that they can’t be a decent one if they don’t look after themselves, first. Parenting is a labour of love, but it’s also hard work. You either take a break, or you have a breakdown. For some, that could be holidaying with their children because they know their family and that’s the best option for all.
For others, looking after themselves could involve taking some time to remind themselves who they were, as individuals and a married couple, before a tiny dictator imposed their rule/they lovingly brought an infant into the world.
There’s no right or wrong. Every parent is just doing the best they can. So what’s the point in making a mother doubt or question her actions, especially when she’s obviously already considered the pros and cons, made suitable arrangements… and she is already on the other side of the world and it is done?
LISTEN: We talk to Nadia Bartel abourt her life as a WAG.
We all know that it’s common on social media for holiday snaps to be met with negativity from those not on holidays. It’s a natural human reaction, especially when parents see other parents chillaxing sans their children. They’d be forgiven for writing, “That looks amazing. Wish I was there. Or even at the shops, just anywhere, without these pesky kids.”
But some take envy a few steps further and turn it into resentment – which then compels them troll. Parent shaming, as we all know, is a proven way to bring a person down and get them to take the bait.
Some parents feel threatened when they see someone making different choices to the ones they make. Some parents like to tell other parents off, because they believe they know best. But most parents don’t. Most parents don’t need to give other parents permission to run their lives.
It’s possible to respect a mother’s choice, regardless of whether you’d make the same one, or you envy the hell out of hers.
Safe travels, Bartels!