PARENTS

Why I Hate Celebrity Mum Memoirs

20/03/2011 00:28 | Updated 22 May 2015

If I have a question about motherhood there are a lot of people I might ask. My own mother, fellow mums, the eminently knowledgeable online community of parents, my GP, health visitor, or, in the early days, a midwife.

The person I am least likely to turn to is the presenter of a Saturday night game show, or the wife of a cheeky chappie TV chef, which is why I hate celebrity mummy memoirs.

I am sick to the back teeth of famous new mums preaching about what a revelation motherhood has been. It's as if they are labouring under the impression that just because their pretty faces have graced our television screens they somehow know more about what it is to be a mum than the rest of us.

Tess Daly, Myleene Klass, Jools Oliver, Melanie Sykes and Mel Giedroyc (of Mel and Sue 'fame') to name but a few, have all penned baby books after popping out a sprog or two, clearly believing that their experiences were somehow so unique that us mere mortals could learn a thing or two from them.

They patronise every mother who has come before them with their trite homilies and inane observations on becoming a mummy. They marvel at how pregnancy has robbed them of their slim figures, paving the way for their post-baby flab fighting DVD, they are shocked by child birth, sleepless nights, cracked nipples and dirty nappies, as if they were the first woman ever to face such horrors.

Do celeb mums somehow believe these experiences aren't valid until someone famous has had them? Do they imagine we will all share their amazement at these commonplace occurrences that every other mother suffers in silence or shares with her friends, not the paying public?

I will admit to a bunch or two of sour grapes, because I am sure that if some publisher had been willing to stump up the cash in return for my musings on motherhood I would instantly have dashed off my own baby book. But would that have made my thoughts any more valid or useful to any other mother? As I have had four sons, perhaps it might, but as I am not a celebrity we shall never know

There are scores of mummy blogs, forums and websites - including of course Parentdish - where you can read the thoughts of other mothers, for free, and decide for yourself if you think what they have to say is worth listening to or not. Do we really need celebrities to add to the wealth of chatter that informs modern day parenting?

What with Gina Ford and Tanya Byron, Jo Frost and the Baby Whisperer, there are enough professionals to guide us through the maze of bringing up babies, should we feel the need of a helping hand, without that pretty girl off the telly adding her words of 'wisdom'.

Are we really so shallow that it would make us feel better about stretch marks, or morning sickness, sleepless nights or feeding problems, just because we know that the host of Strictly Come Dancing has experienced them too?

If I want to read about breastfeeding, or sleep routines, or how to shift my baby fat, I want the advice to come from lactation experts, health visitors, paediatricians, dieticians and fitness trainers. In other words people who have put the effort in to learn about their subject, rather than a leggy blonde whose experience of reading an autocue far outweighs her expertise in child bearing and rearing.

Suggest a correction