The reality is that our system of child protection relies overwhelmingly on volunteers. Foster carers provide homes for three out of every four children and young people in care. In return, they receive no salary but are compensated through allowances based on the number of children they care for and their special needs.
What I am is a mother and in that split second I saw someone potentially laughing and pointing at my own son or daughter in ten years time and my instinct to protect those who are perhaps a little more vulnerable than others just kicked in.
Back then, The Unsung Mum was full of joy from having The Baby but that didn't last long. Once at home, The Unsung Mum started feeling a bit odd. See, like everyone, she'd heard of post-natal depression, but didn't actually know what it was.
Yup. I'm aware I've already shared my potty training disasters with you. Sorry about that, but as any blogger will know, I have to work with what I have. And what I currently have in abundance are stories about wee.
Most children's experience of divorce will depend on how their parent's perceive their own situation. It is sometimes possible to separate with compassion, amicability and with a loving belief that, as author Bryon Katie says, "If I lose anyone or anything, I've been spared."
Adjusting to your off-spring fleeing the nest and moving into university halls of residence is tough. Any parent that tells you that they have never thought of doing any of the following is either lying or hiding the fact that they have actually done several! I decline to reveal exactly how many have crossed my mind!
The thing is, once we're in a position where sex might be a possibility i.e. in a quiet house with children either sleeping or not present, I start to think about how late it is or how the kids could wake up any second and wouldn't it be awful if we were in the middle of something if they did?
We tend to forget that the internet was built for adults, but it is children who have inherited it and who will drive it into the future. As a parent, it was frightening to know that my children had the technical know-how to search online from a young age.
As a hypnotherapist I decided to use hypnosis to help my daughter settle at bedtime and it worked brilliantly. My daughter called it sleepy voice and we both came to love it. I used it from around 18 months onwards and for the first few years I used it at least three times a week
If you google cervix, the definition is "the narrow neck-like passage forming the lower end of the womb". To you and I, essentially the cervix connects the vagina and uterus. Your mucus plug will create a seal (and keep it closed) during pregnancy
You can change that unhelpful dramatic chemical reaction in your body to a helpful one that labour favours, like producing the hormone oxytocin equally as quickly as you made the drama. It's just like flicking switch; you just need to give yourself permission to see it in the first place
That moment when you think you only have two minutes to get to school pick up and you're stuck in traffic an hour away, then you suddenly remember it's 'make ornaments out of your own bogies' club, is pure euphoria.
There are so many wonderful picture books this summer/autumn, I could have written this feature four times over. But here are twenty of the very best.
I was delighted. Nervous about the unknown, but absolutely thrilled nonetheless. From day one I saw raising a boy as an opportunity. I saw it as a special assignment. I mean here I was, a new mum, presented with the task of raising this little person.
I hadn't heard of birth trauma until after I gave birth to my daughter and was googling what on earth might be wrong with me. I certainly had no idea its possible to suffer Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) following childbirth, that was something I'd only associated with people returning from war.
I made my four year old participate in the reading challenge. His excitement was palpable every time he picked a book from the children's section and collected a Sir Quentin Blake illustrated card in his folder. Upon completion of the challenge he was awarded a shiny gold medal and a certificate- a 'gloriumptious' (glorious and wonderful) moment
Those that argue that parents are not responsible for making a childhood magical, are fighting against this media fueled pressure on parents to achieve perfectionism. They are saying that a magical childhood is not about having a Pinterest perfect birthday party or making 10 different Christmas crafts.
When my youngest child G was in primary school, the walls outside her classroom were display boards for pupils' artwork. She wasn't academic at that time (being a late reader), but with child-like enthusiasm and exuberance, she used to put a lot of work into art.