Confessions of an Irish Parent

Silhouettes of happy parents having good time with their little children on the seacoast

Being a parent mustn’t be easy. From the time a child is brought into the world they are the sole responsibility of their parents until they flock the nest; and these days, that usually doesn’t happen until they are graduated from college at 22 years of age or more.

Parents are by the side of their children through everything from the good times to the bad. Through birthday parties, sporting events and play-dates it is up to the parents to make sure everything runs smoothly, but not everything is always perfect.

Tantrums, illnesses, and children just not being bothered to do something are all obstacles that occur in the daily lives of Irish mothers and fathers that stop them from sticking to the routine, and when the routine is skewed, things go wrong.

Parents try to make everything perfect all of the time but unfortunately, their kids have a different plan.

Earlier this year, The Circular spoke to Irish babysitters who confessed some of the things the experienced when the parents weren’t home. Now it’s time for the Irish mothers and fathers to open up about some of their most memorable parenting fails.

1.  My second child’s birthday was coming up so I decided to be organised for once and ordered the cake way in advance. When it arrived it was great, everything I wanted. The party was in full swing, most of my friends were there with their young children too. I put the candles on, lit them and brought it over to for him to blow out. Everyone was singing and it was great. Suddenly everyone was laughing, saying the cake shop must have made a mistake. I was confused. A friend turned to me and said “it says happy second birthday” my response was “yeah that’s right” as I quickly realised he was only turning one. I was genuinely mortified, it had been the longest year ever, I actually thought he was turning two.  – Anonymus Mum, Dublin.

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2. My husband had our three-year-old on his shoulders while we went for a walk in France. She fell asleep (I know, she could fall asleep anywhere) and he forgot she was up there. Suddenly he let go and she fell to the ground. There were plenty of tears but thankfully she was okay. Mini crisis averted with the help of ice-cream. – Anonymus Mum, Dublin.

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3. My parents live in a large apartment block and when we were getting ready to go and saying our goodbyes the kids raced to press the button to go down on the lift. The lift arrived before we were ready and the youngest hoped in and the doors closed. The other children came to tell us and we all ran to use the stairs checking every floor as he likely pressed every button. Eventually, the lift came back to the original floor we were on and he was safe. I always make sure to say our goodbyes from inside the apartment now! – Anonymus Mum, Dublin.

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4. My daughter came to me looking for pictures and stories from my relatives, I had a great picture of a stern looking woman in a nice dress that I found in a skip years before. I made up a whole story of how she was my great-aunt and the picture was taken on her wedding day in a dress that she had made. My daughter fell for it and presented it to the whole class saying “she wishes that her great-great-aunt could have made her communion dress”. When she was older and I told her, she was not happy at all but saw the funny side of how gullible children really are. – Anonymus Dad, Dublin.

The photo in question Photo Credit Anonymous Dad
The photo in question – Photo Credit Anonymous Dad

5. Back in 2002, my daughter wanted to phone her friend Charlotte to ask her over for a playdate. We had a phone book with all friends and family in alphabetical order so I told her to find her in it and give her a call. She eventually found it and rang straight away getting through to who she thought was Charlotte’s dad. “Can Charlotte come for a playdate on Friday” she proceeded to ask. After a few times, the man seemed confused and hung up. I told her to bring the book to me as she may have typed in the wrong number. I couldn’t believe it when I saw she had mistakenly taken her dad’s personal phonebook and phoned a notable politician with the same initials of C.H. – Anonymus Mum, Dublin.

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