Bringing up my son has, of course, been a really rewarding experience so far, but I wasn’t prepared for how conflicted I would feel about moulding his personality and disciplining him. Because I am an authority junkie and will do almost anything I am told, I didn’t think I would have a problem when it came to giving the orders. However, now that he’s turned two and keeping his behaviour in check takes up about 80% of the time we spend together, I’ve discovered it’s a topic that is not so much full of grey areas as one big mass of grey, chock full of difficult questions.
Before I had kids, I have to admit that I judged parents who weren’t completely in control of their child’s behaviour. It was only upon becoming a parent myself that I realised some days can be spent feeling like a Class A mother in custody of an angel, and others can be spent being beaten about the face by my irate two-year-old, or dragging him out of the supermarket queue so that his face-to-floor meltdown doesn’t hold up other shoppers.