Sunday, 15 January 2012
Make like the French and rediscover l'equilibre
Despite the unlikelihood of me ever managing chic French style myself, it was heartening and not a little inspiring to read about the French approach to the knarly subject of raising children in yesterday's Times. The idea of not feeling guilty for taking 'me time' and ensuring that you don't become completely childcentric following maternity leave, are excellent ones to take on board and ones I definitely feel we disregard too often in the UK. However, it did strike me that some of the methods used by our French sisters were not exclusively French and took me back to my own childhood experiences of discipline, particularly 'les gros yeux' which unburied my memory of Grandad's beady eye and indeed the look my parents cast my way for a whole gamut of minor misdemeanours. It would be wrong to assume that these techniques are not employed by British parents, although it would be correct to recognise that in some cases this repertoire of reprimands needs a good dusting off. It was good to finally read some common sense advice and personally to feel for once I was getting some things right, having tried to instill most of the rules into my own children already (single snacks and secret swear words aside!) I look forward to reading more common sense advice in Monday's paper. Let's face it, who wouldn't knock Gina Ford and Supernanny from their pedestals in favour of the chic and sassy Parisian maman?