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>Can someone please write a guide to the unwritten rules


This post by Nappy Valley Girl really struck a chord with me – I feel constantly as if every other parent out there has got access to some guide about how to do things and that I wasn’t around when they handed it out.

When it comes to the working world I know the important things like Friday being the day to wear a pink shirt, that there is only so far I can go with my favourite funky shoes and where to find the secret stationery stash.

But when it comes to the world of parenting I’m all at sea – I just seem to not know how to access the secrets of the Mummy world.

Take swimming lessons – you have to sign up the second they turn 6 months to a waiting list, then when you’re at the top of the list, you have to call in an hour long gap on the day term ends to get into a class.  I still am hazy about term dates (Toddlergirl is only two in my defence) so this is just an impossible challenge.

Then there are all the classes, which are the best, which are the ones you should go to and then how to get onto the waiting lists.

And knowing when to arrive in order to get a parking space so you don’t have to park miles and miles away.

I know its going to get harder as the girls get older, and I’m going to continue to be out of touch because I’m at work every day.  This is a maze I don’t think I’m going to be able to navigate without some help.

Please can someone throw me a copy of that manual – please!

Photo credit


Also I wonder if you’ve heard of The MADs (Mummy & Daddy) Blog Awards – if you, ahem, felt like nominating a blog that you like, you can do it over here.  And my blog roll over on the right has a list of darn fine blogs if you have a category you haven’t filled yet.

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23 comments to >Can someone please write a guide to the unwritten rules

  • zooarchaeologist

    >The rule is: It is always to late to join the Rainbows and Brownies waiting list…

  • TheMadHouse

    >Swimming here is a nightmare. They have to be 4 to do lessons on their own. Mini will turn 4 in June, his name has been down since he turned 3, he is still no where near the top!

    Parking, well it is good to park miles away the excercise does you good, or at least that is what I tell myself

  • Maggy Red Ted Art

    >My personal view: whilst they are little, just enjoy doing simple things like playing in the park (what is more fun than a huge pile of leaves and a puddle). Plenty of time for classes etc – so much pressure to do "everything" – i think there is a lot to be said for children learning stuff by themselves and hanging out with parents. Dont worry. "You time" is all they want 🙂

  • JulieB

    >I think Maggy has made an excellent point, although sometimes it is easier said than done. There is so much pressure and guilt out there, but life really is too short… at least, that is what I try to tell myself. Doesn't always work of course, so if you find that manual, please share it!

  • The Dotterel

    >Rule one of our manual is live somewhere unfashionable… not only is everything cheaper, but the competition for activities isn't as fierce! But that's not very helpful I'm afraid.

    Anyway, love the new look!

  • It's a Mummys Life

    >If you find it can you chuck a copy my way? I frequently feel like the worlds'a parenting party I havent' been invited to. xx

  • Mwa

    >I'm not in paid work at the moment, and I still get it all wrong. I think the ones "in the know" keep it a closely guarded secret.

  • Jen

    >When you get that manual can you photocopy it for me? pleeeeeeease? 😀 Jen.

  • Potential Mummy B

    >Oh my word, you frighten me! Signing up for swimming lessons when they're 6 months old!? How does one find out these things… it's a minefield!


  • Cara

    >I've got a nearly 15YO, a 6YO & 10 month old. I still don't know the rules! My friends and other school mums text me reminders to check I've got the school notice re:Victorian Day, World Book Day, Easter Competition etc. I'm like care in the community. I just always put on an act as though "Yes, I knew about that!"

  • Serenity

    >When I had baby 2, what I couldn't understand was how these first time mums with tiny babies seemed more clued up on what was going on than me! There must be a manual out there somewhere. Either that or a secret antenatal class that teaches the lucky few how to get ahead of the rest of us!

  • Muddling Along Mummy

    >I'm so glad its not just me ! Safety in numbers and all that…

    Ok so we're agreed, if someone gets hold of a copy they'll share with the rest of us

  • bakingmadmama

    >Ha, I am always the last one to sign up for things and by the time I start various classes etc everyone already knows each other and I am like the new girl at school who nobody wants to sit next to (yes, complete with big glasses and holey socks). If you lay your hands on such a manual send it my way!

  • vegemitevix

    >Oldest child (of three) is just about 16. I still have no idea whether I'm doing it right or not. I'd share the manual with you, if I had one! ;-p

  • spudballoo

    >yeah I'm still figuring it all out but trying not to fret. We didn't do all this fancy stuff when we were kids, we didn't do classes beyond 'playgroup' before 5. We didn't do swimming french gymboree etc etc, but we all seemed to have turned out ok.

    Fret not. Your girls will be fine. I don't work fulltime. My boys aren't 'on track' with all those extras either. Give yourself a break and let your girls enjoy be little and just 'being'. There will be years enough for schedules and lessons and classes.


  • Myshka

    >Just keep paddling. It's always going to be hard- when we do one aspect of womanhood well, we drop the ball on something else. It's a never ending battle. Although a nice G&T does work wonders. 😉

  • Mummy

    >Don't worry, I didn't get a manual either! However after a lot of trial and error we know when to arrive at the pool to get a good parking space…

  • Knackered Mother

    >Have you seen Mothership's latest post? RTFM! Brilliant! Nice makeover BTW x

  • Amelia

    >oh my! And I wish it was just getting on the swimming list first that I needed a parenting manual for! Normally for me its such as setting boundaries, less guilt/worry, home-work etc etc. I find myself frequently wondering where the parenting guidebook is!


  • Hot Cross Mum

    >I know what you mean. I sometimes feel like I'm 'pretending' to be a mum, while everyone else seems to have it all sussed and have been doing it all their lives. I didn't know for months that my son was supposed to take a snack to his pre school class – see, I'm rubbish!

  • Iota

    >I think everyone feels like this, but few confess it.

    One of the liberating things about moving abroad (which we did 3 years ago) is that you can ask idiot questions without feeling like an idiot. There's no sense that you should somehow magically know these things. (Though of course that comes with the feeling of being an idiot all the time, which is the downside.)

    The ideal, if you can manage it, is to make friends with someone who has a child a year or two older than yours, and use them as a source of information. Sneaky! I think most mums like helping others out in this way. I mean, it's not as if all that local parenting knowledge is going to get you a pay rise or kudos anywhere else, so it's nice if someone values it. But then you have to remember it's just their opinion. On lots of occasions I've been told that this is the best class, or that is the best teacher, and then I've decided a while later that I didn't agree.

  • Manicmum

    >There's so much BS out there – once I could work out who was lying and who wasn't I started to feel I could survive this motherhood thing. You know those mothers who are so confident all the time – he's having a growth spurt, he's teething, he's overstimulated. I would just think: How the hell do you know for sure?? Don't get me started. Really. Some people need to be reminded it's not a competion.

  • Blog5

    >There is no cut and dried rule to being a Mommy. You have to learn from the experience as you go through each day. No manual will ever prepare you to the reality of being a mother!

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