This week I have found myself in a rather compromising situation... it's not your average mummy problem of a toddler that doesn't eat, a baby that doesn't sleep and a husband that doesn't put his socks in the laundry basket. No, this week, I found myself in the firing line of an extremely controversial story published on the Mail Online and have had to endure over a thousand comments questioning my integrity, my parenting and my sheer existence. To say the last 24 hours has been traumatic would be an understatement.
When I agreed to take part in this article, I couldn't possibly foresee this as the outcome. It was initially put to me that it was an article about Toddler Fashionistas, which I thought was right up my street as a blogger with a huge interest in kiddies fashion, sadly this was not to be. Instead this was to be an article about a mother that would sooner see her daughters go without food and drink if it meant they could walk down the street in designer clothes.
The comments, and quite rightly if this article was 100% true, were truly hateful. In times like this, I thought social media would be my friend, but needless to say - when it comes to the press - the contributor is totally powerless. By agreeing to take part in this saga I quite literally signed away any rights that I have. Trying to defend myself on the awful comments on the Mail Online was a pointless task, each plea was rejected, they would much rather stick to approving the faceless bullying. But thankfully, the Huffington Post agreed to let me have my say in an attempt to redeem a fraction of my families reputation by letting me blog this post.
You can catch the article here, the headline alone was enough to bring me to my knees, but what I really want you all to know is the truth behind this hideous story so that i'm no longer portrayed as the mother from hell! In response to the article - these are the facts which I hope you will relate to...
- Yes the girls have the odd label, who doesn't like a bit of designer gear? But I certainly would never pay full price for it!
- If Scarlett ever turns her nose up at an item of clothing, it's because of the look of it - not because of where it's come from! She's two for crying out loud!?
- We like a holiday, thats no secret, but £25k - I bloody wish!
- Most of Scarlett's nursery is Ikea, its no secret, it is there in the photographs! I'm not ashamed of that or try to pretend it's something that it's not, you can see that for yourself here on my post about her room!
- It's true that we don't buy shoes from fashion shops such as M&S and Next, but what I added to this statement was that its because we are concerned about Scarlett's ankles turning in!
I had no idea a story could spiral this quickly out of control, what seemed like harmless fun has quite literally put my family in harms way, (did I mention that Barcroft Media have also supplied photos of my husbands car with his number plate in full view?), I have had to close any social networking sites that I have so that my personal life can't be accessed and am just counting down the hours until this ordeal has passed. I feel totally exploited.
For more on the real story click here.
Since fighting my corner, I have had a call from the original writer, Emma Pearson at Barcroft Media suggesting I shouldn't get a right to reply.
To all bloggers out there tempted by the allure of media attention, don't make the same mistakes that I did. Should an opportunity like this arise for you, be sure to get a full understanding of exactly how you are going to be portrayed and think about how this will effect those close to you. Just today, I have already turned down the opportunity to be seen on This Morning and a Channel 5 documentary, I have certainly learnt my lesson!
Fortunately prior to this awful story hitting the headlines, my own version of the Toddler Fashionistas article was published on my blog, so if you do have a genuine interest in toddler fashion - please check this out!