User Comments

pippa July 1, 2024

Unfortunately, this attitude doesn't stop when their offspring leave school. My son was employed as a repairs and maintenance supervisor in a coal mine in the Hunter Valley. While not actually on the tools, he was still in charge of the apprentices. Now these apprentices are working on equipment worth millions of dollars. The vehicles and plant equipment weigh several tonnes. One of the second year apprentices had been a problem since the day he started. Often late, slipshod in his work and an attitude. Finally, the mechanics in the workshop had had enough and asked my son to have a word with him. He did, and the next morning, his mother arrived to scream at my son for 'bullying' her boy. She said he'd never been spoken to like that in his life. His life in the workshop was uncomfortable to say the least after that. 

Regarding parents who refuse to accept that their child isn't perfect, my granddaughter, 14, had to be removed from her school last year because of bullying. My son and daughter in law knew the parents of the ringleader and in fact often caught up when out with mutual friends. When my granddaughter finally refused to go to school, my son approached the father to see if they could resolve the situation. He categorically denied that his daughter would do that. My son then showed him a text his daughter had sent, in which the bully called her vile names and told her to kill herself. The father was furious. Not because of what his daughter had done, but because someone had taken her phone without her knowledge and sent that text to my granddaughter, so his daughter would get into trouble! 

pippa June 17, 2024

Again I question a writer’s opinions on adoption. My sister and I are both adoptees and my son, my only child, is adopted. I’m in my late seventies and my son is in his mid forties. I can never remember a time when I didn’t know I was adopted and when my son was three, he asked me ‘how do babies get here?’ I explained the process in three year old speak and then took the opportunity of telling him that my ‘tummy doesn’t work’, so another lovely lady had him and asked us to look after him for her. She ‘doesn’t have a daddy’ - to a three year old, a male partner is a father - and she wanted him to have one. He adored my husband, so that explanation made sense. It was also the birth mother’s main wish.

I joined an adoptive mother’s group, but had to stop going because I just couldn’t handle what seemed to be the prevailing attitude. That was that adopted children are ‘special’ and different’. Adoption seemed to be one of the main talking points in their homes, and one mother of two adopted girls, actually went to the extreme of cancelling their birthdays on the date they were born, and changing them to the day they joined the family. I tried to explain that no child wants to feel different from everyone else, even for a good reason, but it fell on deaf ears.

In summary, my parents raised my sister and I in the same way as most other children were raised in the fifties - to be strong, independent and resilient. Adoption was almost never discussed, not because it was taboo, but because our family didn’t treat us as kids whose identity was tied up in being adopted. It just wasn’t an issue in our family, and we raised our son the same way. My childhood was wonderful and our son is extremely close to us - well as close as a married man with two kids and a thriving business can be.

pippa June 3, 2024

Her poor little boy. I wasn't a fan of her when she was on MAFS, but I felt for her when she was experiencing hyperemesis gravidarum.

However Martha, motherhood means that no matter what's going on with you is secondary to the needs of your child, especially one that young. I can't imagine how upset and confused the poor little guy must have been when his mother shut herself out of his life for a week. I find that almost unbelievably self indulgent. 

Grow up Martha and learn that almost everyone has problems, and many worse than yours. The needs of your son eclipse yours for at least another 17 years, so get used to it. 

pippa May 30, 2024

I find it incredible that people would even have those reactions. It must be terrible to be going through life harbouring anger bordering on hatred towards 50% of the world’s population.

pippa May 28, 2024

Our only child is adopted and my husband and I fostered children for some years. When I look back on those years, the thing I remember most, apart from the joy of the children, is the gratitude of the biological parents. They're almost always going through a really tough time and they're so grateful to know that their children are being well cared for and loved. 

It's soooo hard to say goodbye, but the experience is so worth it. 

pippa May 21, 2024

If putting their child’s photo online affects that child in any negative way, parents should stop. For instance, Ava can’t catch the school bus. Some of my best times as a kid were singing along to the radio and talking to friends on the hourly bus ride to and from my country school each day. 

Almost every action we as humans perform we  perform to benefit ourselves in some way. Of course kids ‘love’ having heaps of followers on social media. They’re the centre of attention and get gratification from it. How much gratification do these kids get from simple things and doing things for others? Really, these kids were being shared to social media long before they knew what was happening, so they’re really not in a position to know what life’s like without a social media presence.

I know these parents would disagree with me, but the fact that they began sharing their children to the world and his wife from babyhood, tells me that the motivation is a parental need, not a child need.

pippa May 20, 2024

@sj., I’m making no assumptions about the father at all. He may well be a saint and his ex wife is entirely to blame for the situation. But it doesn’t matter how flat you make a pancake, it still has two sides.

I’m looking at the situation as an outsider with many years of experience in life and human behaviour. I wrote what I did from the point of view of what I read, the same as everyone else has, and it seems to me that most of those commenting are attributing all kinds of ghastly character flaws to the mother. Some are speaking of their own mother child relationships and using them to assume this situation is the same as their perception of their situation.

Like everyone else, I’m commenting on my view of the situation. I had a wonderful relationship with both my parents and my son and I have a great bond, so I don’t have a horse in the race. But I hold my view that the father should be attempting to heal the rift between the mother and daughter, with professional help if necessary. And there is one immutable truth which both parents need to remember:  In the event of a relationship breakdown, you’re supposed to love your children more than you dislike each other.

pippa May 18, 2024

@pennyfelicity, are you a mother who is raising or has raised a teenager? It can be an absolute minefield. I had an easy ride, but many friends didn't. 

I think it's really unhelpful to write what you have in answer to this. It strikes me that this mum is feeling badly enough without someone who doesn't know her, piling on like you have. I'm sorry you've had a difficult time with your mother, but your situation doesn't necessarily apply here. 

Something that also strikes me is that the girl's father is behaving badly as well. If he truly loves his daughter, he'll want her to be getting love and support from both her parents. It's incredibly important that children are loved by as many people as possible. Behaving like a dick to spite his ex wife is childish and selfish. 

I hope the situation resolves for the mother and her daughter. No parent is perfect and it's hard work. When things go wrong, parents and their kids need support to fix the situation, not total strangers diagnosing them with all kinds of personality defects.

pippa May 16, 2024

I'm 78 and therefore a bit of an expert on ageing. Can I just say that I don't believe it's useful to place expectations on yourself, because more often than not, those expectations won't be met. 

There's a great three word saying that seems to have popped up recently:  You do you. That's my advice for ageing. Of course, as with every aspect of life we need to consider others and try to be kind and make a constructive difference in some small way to the lives of those we love. 

I can look back and know that I've made mistakes, but not earth shattering ones, and those I did make affected me more than anyone else. So lean into ageing and go with the flow. But I will say this:  Old age isn't for the faint hearted, but it's better than the alternative. 

pippa May 12, 2024

Fourteen is 64 years ago for me, but I remember being the uncool girl with no real friends. I was physically unattractive and hated myself, so I avoided classmates, assuming they hated me too. This opinion was reinforced when I attended a school dance and wasn’t asked to dance the whole night. Dancing alone wasn’t a thing then, so I just sat there wishing it was time for Dad to collect me. At recess and lunchtime, I’d take the book I was reading at the time and sit by myself, only coming out of my hidey hole to go to rehearsals for The Pirates of Penzance, because the one thing I was good at was singing. I never told my parents how I felt, because I knew they’d just tell me to toughen up.

That pales into insignificance though compared to the vicious bullying my granddaughter endured in Year 8, in person and online. In the end, she simply refused to go to school. My son and daughter in law approached the school. They said there isn’t much they can do. My son spoke to the father of one of the bullies whom he knows. He said his daughter wouldn’t do that. My son showed him one of the comments his daughter had written, with her name attached. The father said it must have been written by someone else using her name. In the end my granddaughter was removed from the school and now attends a private school where she’s thriving.

Different eras, different experiences, but still a difficult age to navigate.

pippa May 8, 2024

@anonymous, I’m not denying that. What’s with this determination to paint men as bad people? My son grew up in a home with a mother, me, who made sure he understood the value of both sexes. He’s always been extremely respectful of women and became highly indignant at the age of six when I read him the Valentine’s card my husband had given me. The verse ended with the words ….. ‘because you’re mine.’ He said, ‘Mum, that’s horrible! People don’t own people!’

However ….. he’d come home from school from around the age of 13 and tell me some horrendous things discussed by the boys at school. I knew some of their parents and I knew they’d be furious if they knew their boys were talking that way. But the two who were the most disrespectful were being raised by single mothers, one of whom had refused to allow the father any contact with his two children.

It’s important in discussions of topics like this to maintain an open mind. SOME boys may come from homes where disrespect towards women is allowed, but I believe a far greater number come from homes where women are valued and respected. You’re selling women short if you think they aren’t capable of resisting the influence of a misogynistic father. As I said in my previous comment, in the teenage years, peer pressure becomes an overriding influence on the behaviour of boys. And I agree with Missmc’s point about the influence of gaming.

pippa May 6, 2024

@paula.gartea, just recently, I got into a discussion with one of my carers about the differences in parenting from when I became a mother in 1977, and the modern day. This particular carer is a mother of four boys. She has a degree in psychology, but finds she enjoys working in the aged care sector more than the academic one. 

She told me that when she was much younger - she's now in her early 50s - she strongly believed that the influence of parents is the paramount factor in the behaviour of children. She's now changed her mind. Her boys range in age from 13 to 23, and she's realised that the influence of peers becomes more and more important as kids progress through school. 

She and her husband have very open communication with all their boys, and they've been appalled at some of the things discussed in the playground. So I don't believe that 'This type of behaviour is influenced by their home environment.' In very rare cases it may be, but peer group pressure can never be underestimated. 

pippa April 29, 2024

@mjte, I'm just an old lady who's been around the block more than a few times. I have a mindset that a decreasing number of people appear to share. That mindset requires me to need evidence to take seriously comments on social media and sites such as Mamamia.

When you say Sarah is '..... playing right into the Liberal party's hands, .....' are you suggesting that the coalition doesn't care about DV? I take your point about little having been done when they were in power, but the same can be said for every government in our history. If you're saying that the coalition is unwilling to do anything to curb DV in comparison to Labor, I'd need to see evidence of that. And why should those who listen to 2GB be deprived of hearing Sarah's message? I don't live in Sydney, and I've never listened to 2GB, but your comment seems to me to smack of elitism. 

I don't believe DV is something that should be politicised and used to point out alleged shortcomings in political rivals. I'm apolitical. I think they're all overpaid and overprivileged in terms of their perks. I'm also a survivor of domestic violence. 

pippa April 25, 2024

@arac2007, I’m so sorry this happened to you. I hope in time things will improve with the new treatments becoming available for spinal cord injuries.❤️🌹

pippa April 8, 2024

Collins did say, 'What a day!', but he mostly said,  'It's been a day!'

pippa April 2, 2024

In my opinion, Lauren was one of the most real people ever on MAFS. She’s everything I wanted to be at her age, but didn’t have the confidence. Keep it up Lauren, you’re a gem!

pippa April 1, 2024

I have an absolute thing about the cleanliness or otherwise of hair. I think Jack’s hair is dirty, not conditioned. I like to see hair shining, and Jack’s hair looks like a grease pit.

pippa March 27, 2024

@jessiejay7, contrary to what appears to be popular opinion, it's my belief that most adopted children do 'luck out'. My sister and I certainly did with our wonderful adoptive parents, and our adopted son has a close relationship with my husband and I. He's 46 and has brought us immeasurable joy. And two gorgeous grandchildren. 

pippa March 16, 2024

Just further evidence of the trend to live in a fantasy world rather than the real one. As King Lear said, 'That way madness lies.'

pippa March 14, 2024

I first read this article yesterday and have been thinking about it ever since. The article seems to presuppose that women don't want to help their partner through emotional problems. It appears to suggest that men should have it all together before beginning a relationship, because any emotional needs they may have will be an unfair imposition on their female partner. 

I see one problem with this. Some women are born take on this role. I'm one of those women, and so is Lucinda. I've been married to a man with a multitude of issues for two months short of 56 years. I've always been the person friends brought their problems to. I don't know why, but that's the way things have been since my teenage years. We married young, and I'll admit there have times when I've wondered if it's worth it. But when push comes to shove, my husband has become the nurturing carer for me now and I know it was worth it. 

Lucinda said to Timothy, 'I'm here for all of this.' She's just one of those people who wants to help and has the skills to do it. Like me, Lucinda doesn't see it as sublimating her needs, and frankly, I find it a bit insulting to suggest that she does.