For Mothers

For Mothers: Election Results… and Parenting

Election results and parenting

There has just been a general election in the UK. The results have come in and we will have the same government for the foreseeable future, up to 5 years.

But: What on earth do the general election results have to do with parenting?


Sometimes we win and sometimes we lose. We have to pick our battles and fight for what we think is right. But sometimes we just have to accept things the way they are.

It applies to the results of an election in a democratic country. It applies to parenting as well.

So… mothering is like running in an election: we win some, we lose some, but we never give up for what we believe in. It’s just that sometimes we don’t get things the way we want them to be. And we love our family (and our nation) whether we manage to get the rest of the household on side or not, in any particular issue.

Likewise we can teach our children the same principle:

Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but you keep going no matter what, adapting to your circumstances as best you can and doing your best in every circumstance. This is what we model and what we teach our children.

Pick our battles

As parents, we are ultimately the leaders in the household, with the children being the followers. We want to lead well, and want to influence our children in positive ways.

Therefore we have to choose the battles we fight. 

We cannot live the illusion of control by insisting on always having our way, and yet nor can we abdicate our responsibility as a parent by giving in on every issue that arises. So, we need to be wise about the issues we make issues — we need to decide what’s really important… and what is relatively unimportant, so that our children will have their freedom too, to make their own decisions. 

Some things will be in our Manifesto*, other things we need to let our children determine, so they can develop confidence, decision-making skills, and explore their own ideas in order to develop their own boundaries and principles.

Stick to our guns and yet be flexible

I suggest we need to stick to our principles and yet allow flexibility in the things that really don’t matter. That way, everybody wins once in a while, and yet, the things that really matter remain under our jurisdiction for as long as the children are children.

*Manifesto: includes promises, principles and determinations we aim to achieve and do not wish to compromise on because we attach high value and importance to them