baby

It takes so little to be a Good Dad, and so little to be a Shitty Mum.

When Australian blogger Constance Hall improvised a nappy change on the grass – like many mothers have had to do, she was shamed by a stranger.

Hall went “very far away” from the ill-equipped restaurant she was dinning in, to find a patch of grass.

“A women approached me and said, ‘I saw you changing your daughter’s nappy, could you please use the change table next time’,” Hall wrote on Instagram.

I had breakfast with a friend and of course Snow shat. ???? I went to the bathroom and there was no change table. ???? No dramas the restaurant was in a park, I went very far away, put her on the grass and changed her bum. ???? No big deal. ???? 30 minutes later a women approached me and said, “I saw you changing your daughters nappy, could you please use the change table next time” ???? I said “there wasn’t one” ???? She said “there is, it’s in the disabled toilet and that’s around the other corner” ???? I said “cool, she’s probably not due for another shit for about 6 hours but I will act accordingly” I felt like a loser. The world went on. ???? The following weekend we were at the park, all of us. Rumi shat.. I told Bill that it was his turn, he put Rumi on the grass and changed his bum. ???? A group of women walked passed, one said.. “Aww good dad!!! That’s what we like to see, get in there” ???? Bill felt like a legend. The world went on. ???? I didn’t think much of it because I am used to it. I am used to being scrutinised for jobs that my husband is praised for. I am used to picking the kids up from school to judgmental looks about being late, while Bill is used to a red fucking carpet and a 12 piece band praising him for his heroic appearance at school pick up. ???? That’s the way we as a society are, we place so much pressure on women to be perfect and selfless while putting low parenting expectations on men. ???? I am not saying quit the praise. I love seeing Bill get praised for the things he does for our kids. He is a good dad, why not celebrate him. But let’s praise each other too, let’s see a women talking on the phone while pushing her pram and think ‘wow, she chose not to stay at home bidding on eBay smashing straight vodka. She chose to come to the park and be a magnificent mum’ ???? Celebrations, high fives or just a complaint for all Queens today. Because Queening deserves a standing ovation. ???? Kindness puts a red carpet under every shitty arse and a 12 piece band at every late school drop off. ???? You just can’t see it ????

A photo posted by constanceandtribe (@mrsconstancehall) on

The 32-year-old blogger explained to the woman that there weren’t any facilities at the restaurant, but the stranger insisted there was a nearby disabled toilet “around the corner”.

The following weekend Hall was with her family at the park.

“Rumi shat…I told Bill that it was his turn, he put Rumi on the grass and changed his bum,” she said.

“A group of women walked passed, one said: ‘Aww good dad!!! That’s what we like to see, get in there’.”

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Hall said she thought nothing of the obvious double standard, because she was “used to it”.

“I am used to being scrutinised for jobs that my husband is praised for,” she said.

“I am used to picking the kids up from school to judgmental looks about being late, while Bill is used to a red fucking carpet and a 12 piece band praising him for his heroic appearance at school pick up.”

The standard that women need to reach to be praised for their mothering is akin to performing some kind of small miracle. Although we perform them all the time.

I teamed my toddler’s day nap with my dental appointment the other day.  My dentist wasn’t the least bit impressed, despite my attempts to point out the amazing feat – but that’s pretty normal.

Meanwhile, a man just needs to do the basics to get noticed by the masses.

“I am not saying quit the praise. I love seeing Bill get praised for the things he does for our kids,” says Hall.

“He is a good dad, why not celebrate him. But let’s praise each other too, let’s see a women talking on the phone while pushing her pram and think: ‘wow, she chose not to stay at home bidding on eBay smashing straight vodka. She chose to come to the park and be a magnificent mum’.”

But we don’t praise mothers enough.

While pregnant, US stand-up Ali Wong highlighted the double standard in her Netflix special, Baby Cobra.

“I can already see how there’s this crazy double standard in our society of how it takes so little to be considered a great dad, and it also takes so little to be considered a shitty mum,” says Wong.

Actor Chris Hemsworth baked a cake for his daughter’s birthday when his local bakery said they were too busy and news outlets and fans went crazy with praise.

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But well-known US blogger Bunmi Laditan posted a different response on Facebook:  “Why is it that when a dad does the bare minimum required to parent that’s he’s given a trophy and a parade?”

“All a dad has to do to be hailed as an incredible parent is stick around and take just a smidgen above the mildest of interest in their kid, post about it online, and they’re #DadGoals for the entire universe,” she said.

Would there be any news value in reporting an actress baking a cake? I doubt it.

“Insert name here – bakes cake for daughter’s birthday.”

I think it’s more like: “I got Facebook shamed for my son’s birthday cake. Again.”

The daddy double standards over nappy changes or cake are worth fighting with simple kindness.

Amazing mothers everywhere are running on empty, with little praise for what they do so well. The very least we can do is notice the small miracles they are performing everyday.

“Kindness puts a red carpet under every shitty arse and a 12-piece band at every late school drop off,” Hall says.

Did you know we have a parenting podcast? Join Andrew Daddo and Holly Wainwright every week to discuss every aspect of family life on This Glorious Mess. It’s the perfect podcast for non perfect parents. Listen to the latest ep here:

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