Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Feminism has Changed. Time to Embrace it!

What it means to be a Feminist has changed. It’s constantly changing and definitely for the better. We live in a society where we are aware of what everyone thinks about everything is broadcast all over social media 24/7. So Feminism is becoming more accessible and less exclusive. It’s less about anger and more about wanting everyone to have equal opportunities regardless of gender/race/sexuality and ability. And being aware of your place in the privilege hierarchy whilst you’re doing it.

I really became aware of what Feminist meant when I was at Uni. I never felt like boys and girls weren’t completely equal and thinking otherwise was absurd. I'd grown up never consciously feeling "less" than my male peers. But now, at Uni, I had a name for this feeling. So I decided to do a gender studies course which of course confirmed that yes indeed, I was a feminist. However, this was the mid-90s. It was the 3rd wave of feminism…. what I learnt about feminism then intimidated me. So much so that I never felt confident actually saying I was feminist, lest I be interrogated about my beliefs and forced to account for my make-up wearing, men shagging, leg shaving, Patriarchy-kowtowing ways! I wasn’t able to articulate why I was interested in being attractive to the opposite sex. I certainly didn’t feel brave enough to try and defend myself to the bare-faced, hairy, natural-fibre clad, Birkenstock-wearing, uber feminists!

Feminist at this point very much seemed like a militant, all-in-or nothing stand point. And even though I agreed with it wholeheartedly, I wasn’t prepared to come out as one! I was 19 and I was not ready!

That was until the 4th Wave, which started a few years ago (by now, my mid 30s). The emergence of social media in our everyday lives has means that people are much braver in what they “put out there”. You have the edit / delete function. You can craft your arguments much more succinctly and articulately than when you’re sat in a lecture hall or a class room. So women have been starting to say, more and more, “No! This is STILL not OK!” We still have a massive gender divide in our society. We still have unequal pay, we still have victim-blaming, slut-shaming rape culture, disfiguring a woman is seen as acceptable in Afghanistan if she attempts to go to college, until recently women weren’t allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia, Female Genital Mutilation STILL EXISTS. There are endless reasons why feminism is still a very much a conversation we need to have.

But. Saying that. I have friends who don’t want to call themselves feminist. They don’t like the word. They think it’s associated with extremism...bra-burning, man hating anger. Which, in the 60s and 70s it was a bit. But then in the 60s and 70s, women were angry! The distinction between how the sexes were treated was stark. Things have definitely improved in terms of equality since then. We have a long way to go but things are definitely changing. The face of feminism is changing. People want to be seen as “equalists” not one favouring one over another. My answer to that is this. For time in memoriam the pendulum has swung in favour of men. That pendulum has to swing back the other way before it settles in the middle. That’s part of why we have women only events, awards, grants etc. Where are the men-centric equivalent? Note: See all of history!

But thanks to the likes of Caitlin Moran, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Lauren Laverne, Malala, Meghan Markle even flipping Beyoncé (A POPSTAR….shock, horror!), people are talking about Feminism more and more. It’s becoming much more of normal thing to call yourself feminist. Modern feminism isn’t concerned with what you wear, who you sleep with, or what you look like. We aren’t saying we are superior! We are saying, just budge up and give us ALL room at the table! Give our Trans sisters and sisters of colour some room too! Let’s get intersectional & trans-friendly around here, OK?! 

The emergence of the #MeToo is further proof the war is not over. For all the women who use that hashtag, there are more women/men coming muttering about how some of the famous women are fame whores who just want some limelight. There’s still suspicion that SO many women have experienced abuse/harassment. And then there’s the super helpful (!)  “Not All Men” hashtag, a tasteless, badly timed response which totally detracts from the female experience to make it yet AGAIN about them. (Writtenabout quite brilliantly here.)
My outlook on this definitely changed, not just as I got older and more confident (the bonus of ageing to counter those wrinkles… you care less about them!). But having kids has made me see the world through their eyes too and, more importantly, the future. I don’t want my daughter to be faced with a future where her only options are pink and sparkly and I sure as hell don’t want my son growing up thinking mummies are domestic slaves and it’s OK to do a cheeky rape if you’re all drunk, especially cos she was wearing a mini skirt! No way.

We need to keep this momentum going, this sisterhood which is emerging across the social media world. The word of 2017 according to online dictionary Merriam-Websterwas Feminism! We need to keep spreading the word, it’s OK to be feminist! It’s GOOD to be feminist! We’ve all got your back! The future is Feminist!

Sunday, 7 January 2018

Is Christmas Stress a Feminist Issue?

Christmas is without a shadow of a doubt my favourite time of year. I am super lucky because growing up my family really invested in creating traditions and making it a magical time of year for us. Not with money, we didn’t have much of that growing up, but just with making such a big fuss of the season. So for me it’s still a magical time of celebration, happiness and fun with the added bonus of living that magic vicariously through my children.

But this year, something changed. The stress outweighed the excitement of the season and I almost had a breakdown. I started to have panic attacks and I had to go and see my *counsellor to get me through the holidays. I can’t say I actually decompressed until several days after Christmas day, despite having lovely times in between. But I just wanted it to be over. I couldn’t cope with the weight of expectation laid so heavily at my door. Laid at the door of the wife, the daughter, the mother, the granddaughter, the daughter-in-law. And that’s why I think it’s a feminist issue.

What was it this year that felt too much for me and why is it a feminist issue? Because I did it all. I did it all, on my own. As do so many other mums, daughters, daughter-in-laws, wives. And this year it was too much for me.

I’ve stated before that my husband and I are a team. We share all household/child responsibilities equally. It’s ace. But the running of extra curricular stuff is always up to me. I mostly want it this way. I like to have control, I feel like my memory retention for things like birthdays and school work is better and I am more invested in our social lives because my husband would probably be happy living as a hermit (with us and the cats, obvs).

This year I realised that I don’t think some of our partners have any idea of what goes into the organisation of a Christmas season. And from talking to other mum’s, I know this is most definitely not my experience alone.

I saw a light-hearted segment on This Morning where they bought in a blokey bloke who claimed to do Christmas himself and bragging that he got it all tied up by shopping at 5.30pm on Christmas eve...and a snorting woman, who was the other extreme, and pretty hostile and derisive to the boasty/deluded bloke. Not helpful! The points made were that women make a big fuss about everything and that it’s easy and blokes could do it with little to no effort. Eamon then underlined his point by saying: “I just want it to be simple, like when I was a boy.” To which Ruth replied: “Yes, when your mother did everything.” Touché Ruth.

There are several points to be made here. Firstly, there is an assumption that we put pressure on ourselves to to make everything perfect, sparkly and special, as if that’s what we alone desire. That we don’t HAVE to go to so much effort to lay a nice Christmas table or pack a pretty present with a bow. The effort we go to isn’t to fulfil our own glittery expectations but that of our families...specifically the children’s. There’s also increasing pressure from social media to do things we never had as a child, elf on a shelf, Christmas eve boxes etc. A mum the other day told me her kid had asked her why they didn’t have an elf on the shelf!

Secondly as much as your partner may protest at you bringing stress on yourself with all the effort, has he ever told you the tree is over dressed? The decorations are too much? The lovely wrapping paper is too gaudy, you have too many Christmas cards, the food is too delicious, the presents are too shit and thoughtless? But these are minutiae in comparison to the real effort that goes behind the organisation of Christmas.

These are things I’ve heard being said by male partners at Christmas:
You are going to too much effort! You don’t have to invite family, I don’t care. You don’t have to send my family cards / presents / photo calendars. You don’t have to invite them for lunch / dinner / to stay.”

It’s not that simple though is it? Unless you genuinely dislike your partner’s family and really wish to banish them from your lives, you will always make the effort. Not just for his relationships’ sake but for the sake of your kids’ relationships with said relatives. The maintenance of familial bonds almost always lies with the wife / mother / daughter.

I don’t care about presents. Don’t get me ANYTHING”

Has anyone ever actually been brave enough to do this? To actually get your partner NOTHING to open on Christmas day? Whilst everyone else sits in their own tornado of wrapping paper? And how has that gone down?

Just tell me what do, and I’ll do it!”

Firstly, it isn’t just a matter of “doing”. It’s thinking, planning, booking, ordering, paying, wrapping, packing, sending….the list goes on. The actual “doing” part is usually the bit at the end which requires no thought, effort and very little time. Therefore it’s usually pointless and too late.

My Christmas stress breakdown this year wasn’t caused by my partner not pulling his weight. Whilst I was fretting and doing ALL THE CHRISTMAS THINGS, he was quietly behind me doing the washing, cleaning the kitchen, feeding the kids… doing his bit. There were also some stress-inducing situations, it was a super busy time of year at work, and one of my children decided now was a good to time to give up on sleep and develop a teenage attitude problem to rival Sid in Toy Story and as a result I got a bout of insomnia too.

But even with the support of my husband, it’s a tough time of year for us Mamas. And for many, I think it’s still a feminist issue. There is definitely a disparity in gender roles at this time of year.

Below is a little (not little) time line of the things I did in the run up to Christmas. The list is pretty long. It might be quite dull to read and it’s not essential to the post. Some of it people will deem unnecessary, a waste of money/time. There are definitely things I won’t be doing again to save my own sanity. There will be lots of things on there that most mums do every year however. Enjoy!

*Let me put a little disclaimer: when I walked into my counsellors’ office, the first thing I did was blurt out how ridiculous I felt having panic attacks because I couldn’t cope with Christmas. And how of all the Western-First-World-Middle-Class problems there out there, this had to be pushing for top. I am aware this could sound crazy to others who have lost people they love at Christmas, or are in hospital with loved ones at Christmas or any of the plethora of other, “PROPER” reasons to be stressed/anxious at Christmas. My counsellor told me this statement was unhelpful for addressing my own anxiety. I still felt like an idiot nevertheless.

That's me, sifting through the kid's pressies, trying to write a list of who sent what. Mum in apron behind me going to check potatoes. What else do you see?  
A timeline of Christmas tasks for 2017

Previous December 26th/27th
Brace sales IRL (in real life) or online to search sales for next year’s:
1) wrapping paper
2) Christmas cards
3) Christmas pjs for kids
4) Christmas jumpers / or outfits for kids
5) Crackers / any decs / lights that have broken
6) New Family Calendar for coming year (which you’ll spend ages transferring all birthdays / significant events / term dates / inset days onto)

Start thinking about Christmas pressies and panicking about where the money will come from.
Sort secret Santa in work/help decide venue for Christmas meal/quiz etc.

Book father Christmas visit as soon as tickets go on sale. (Super popular venue)
Panic more about lack of funds. Shop around for credit cards.

Apply for credit card. Await it’s arrival nervously
Start buying THOUGHTFUL presents for all extended family members (12 people).
Buy stocking presents (non thoughtful!)
Arrange & Book venue for blogger Christmas meet up
Buy presents for kids and husband.
Help Dad buy presents for Mum.
Spend a fortune / painstaking hours creating online photo calendars from the last 12 months for older relatives.
Buy stuff for Christmas Eve box
Take kids to Winter Wonderland.
Buy advent calendars
Sell 100 Scout stamps
Book Christmas shop slot. Leave it too late, get rubbish “click and collect” Asda slot
(this requires thinking about all the food and drink we will need over Christmas period)

Take proceeds of sold stamps back to Scout hut. Get guilted into sorting Scout post after work. Have strop with passive aggressive Scout leader and don’t go.
Write Christmas cards
Send photo calendars.
Order school pics. Promptly lose school pics before Christmas and have to send out in January.
Send Scout cards, International cards, UK cards
Wrap all presents. (Emlyn did half)
Pay school for panto trip
Buy sets of tickets for all concerts for all times for all relevant people
Add and replace various items for ULTIMATE Christmas supermarket shop
Book time off work for concerts
Attend a few birthday parties (having bought and wrapped presents)
Sort 2 x random kids costumes for concerts, remember to get them to school
Make gingerbread cookies (not essential but a tradition)
Make Christmas decoration for work competition (!!!!)
Attend concerts for all relevant family members
Wrap “fake pressies” for Scout Christmas party (!!!) Remember child has party, remember his Christmas jumper and entrance money
Remember to dress kids in home clothes / Christmas clothes on various different dates throughout December
Put up decorations (kids do tree...wait til they in bed, re-distribute a few items)
Get extra green bags/food bags in case we get snowed in *hollow laugh*
Buy all bottles of booze and or chocolates and or flowers to take to parties / relatives
Pick up Christmas shop on 23rd, realise half stuff is missing, go to another shop to find missing items.
Plan/make food for boxing day visitors & freeze
Make food for Christmas day
Keep a note of who got what and from who.
Write/ hassle kids into writing Thank you cards
Send Thank you cards
Contact absent family members to wish merry Christmas/happy new year

26th December… brave the sales for next year….. and repeat….

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Motherland Depresses The Shit Out Of Me.

Motherland is a relatively new comedy series on the BBC that follows a modern, middle class white working woman and her struggles with balancing childcare, cliquey playground mums, an unhelpful grandparent and an absent/selfish father. Whilst I do think it’s very funny, and in some ways quite perceptive, I am also depressed as shit about a few key details. And I actually don’t think it’s helpful to have another TV series which represents childcare as solely a woman’s responsibility, however hilarious and possibly true to life it is.

I do get that art reflects life so in this instance the popularity of this show is down to the fact that mothers see their lives reflected back at them. That IS the experience of many women in the UK right now. They work and they struggle and they sort out the childcare. But if we keep portraying that as the norm on screen, it’s not going to change anything is it? At some point, instead of saying this is your experience...isn’t it shit? How about challenging the stereotypes and having a comedy which represents BOTH parents struggling? Because it IS the responsibility of BOTH parents.

My biggest problem with Motherland is the representation of men. They are either entirely absent – the husband of the main character (Julia) is always off at the football or a stag weekend or at his “more important” job. OR they are simpering weirdos who the female characters either tolerate or are mildly repulsed by. WTF? WHY?

Why are the fathers depicted like this? Like they don’t give a shit about their kids parties or schooling or have any interest in their lives at all? Is this the experience of the writer? Because if it is, I feel sorry for her. Of all the partners / fathers I know ...even the ones who are the most self-absorbed and Neanderthal in attitude (thankfully not many) NONE of them have ZERO interest in the lives of their kids. I’d say at the very least most fathers would be present at their kid’s birthday party, no?

And if they ARE totally absent, as much as that is totally shit, it’s also surely partly your responsibility for putting up with it? There’s a point where Julia is on the phone to her husband, at a stag weekend and he asks, albeit insincerely, if he needs to come home. YES. YES YOU FUCKING DO YOU SELFISH PRICK. And she says no, it’s fine. I’m sure many women relate to that. You feel guilty asking them to help because “they need a break too”. They work hard too. Sure. But when do YOU get a break? Why isn’t he organising the kids party and navigating the social awkwardness of kids parties with cliquey parents? Why aren’t YOU off on a canal boat with a donkey hat on, swigging Pimms and singing songs about vicars and tits?

Because you’re a woman. And that’s your job. According to TV adverts, soap operas, comedies, dramas. Woman sort the kids out, men go to the pub. Still. Now. In 2017. W.T.F.

Also, a small note here as well….the writer, who LIVES in London, doesn’t seem to have noticed ethnic diversity either. Which is odd, given that only 44% of London is White & British according to the 2011 consensus. But perhaps I am being picky here? One thing at a time, eh?

The one character I do really like and I think IS true to life is Liz. Liz DGAF. She’s single, she’s always trying to get a date, she takes parenting with a pinch of salt and she’s singularly unimpressed by the bitchy mums. She’s #squadgoals for me. But what IS Kevin? Does ANYONE know a Kevin?

My plea to the BBC is this…. Can we PLEASE have some Fathers in comedy who aren’t totally shit? They do exist. And even if they don’t exist in abundance, then seeing them represented on screen can only help encourage them to be less shit? And maybe encourage some mums to put up with less shit? Surely? PLEASE? In 2017? Yes?  

Monday, 13 November 2017

Feminist Christmas Gift Guide

Hoo Hoo! Christmas is around the corner peeps, you know what that means... GIFT GUIDE SEASON! So last year I created a HILARIOUS *cough* list of gifts parents might like to receive come yule tide. For those who haven't seen it, it was a spoof. This however is for realz. And Feminists love Christmas just as much as the next person, right? (um...apart from Feminists who are of a different faith...but sshhh details!)  So here is a list of things that I think are FAB.

But the most fantabulocious thing of all is that you can win a bunch of items listed below in an amazing Feminist Christmas Giveaway! Hooray! Stay tuned to the end to find out how to enter! And be sure to share with your Feminist Sisters!

Hopefully amongst this awesome list, you'll find something that tickles you or your best mate/partner's fancy:

These beautiful and empowering bracelets £8.50 each from Rose & Roxy where £1 from every purchase is donated to You can also get a 10% discount with the code HELICOPTER at the checkout on Etsy! YEY! 

This hilarious Tote £4.99 Hallion Clothing

This FANTASTIC necklace £12.00 From A RoseCast 

One of a selection of these amazing Feminist Pins £7.00 each from Punky Pins

This frankly excellent Free The Nipple T-Shirt £14.00 Rebecca Kelly 

This Ace Princess Leia Pin £7.50 from Bookish & Bakewell 

This fabulous Embroidery £25 for those who like to mix the Victorian with the obscene (eg ME!) from NiamhyStiches

This Print of amazing Feminsts £14.25 featuring (in clockwise order from top left) Ida B Wells, Ruth Bader Ginsbery, Maya Angelou, Frida Kahlo, Malala, Amelia Earhart, Susan B Anthony & Angela Davis.

This Fabulous Clock approx £20  

This now very popular Book for Mamas approx £12 which has fabulous bite size biographies of amazing women and their contribution to the world written for younger people. Great bedtime stories for your mini Feminists.

Hopefully you've now got some more fab ideas for the best Feminist Christmas ever!

Friday, 13 October 2017

I’ve been Sexually Harassed. You Probably Have Too.

The Weinstein thing. It’s everywhere right now. Big (male) Hollywood Producer in casting couch shocker. The term originated there. I am GLAD it’s everywhere, but it’s about time. Finally more and more men who have abused their positions of power are being held accountable.

And it’s obviously creating a wave of emotion from people who have experienced sexual harassment. I’ve seen quite a few girls on Twitter who have felt “triggered” by the news events recently and have had to come off social media to preserve their mental health. Which completely makes sense, despite it being a desperately sad situation.

But then I realised. I’ve been sexually harassed. I’ve been sexually harassed loads in fact. And do you know why that fact has only just occurred to me? Because I’d always just dismissed it as expected behaviour from the environment I was in. I’ll expand.

I’ve have had my bum pinched by a male teacher, aged 9. Thought it was normal (actually I thought it was a bit weird but not enough to say anything to anyone).

I’ve had my bum patted so many times by so many different men that I can’t even remember numbers.

I’ve had my boobs grabbed, and felt up by strangers in bars, night clubs.

I’ve been forcefully kissed on the mouth by a man I was arguing with.

I’ve had my PUSSY grabbed at by a man in a disgusting pub in Canton, Cardiff. And when I protested this, of course I was called a frigid, lesbian bitch. The stock response. Again I've lost count of how many times I've been accused of either or both. 

I’ve never put up with it. I’ve ALWAYS called out whoever has done the grabbing, rubbing, touching. None of it was invited and where I was (in a club/bar) and what I was wearing (maybe a low cut top) NEVER meant I sanctioned being TOUCHED by a stranger. I’ve had many verbal fights with men and a lot of “almost” physical fights before being pulled away by my friends / boyfriend (who mostly got the stick for not controlling his “bitch”).

Now I am lucky. None of these events have traumatised me. They’ve stayed with me. They’ve hardened my determination to see that women get treated more equally in society. Inevitably they HAVE made me feel bitter and angry that we have to put up with being treated like bits of meat in a butchers shop. But I don’t bear the scars and for that I am grateful.

I am not alone though am I? I am willing to bet that most women who read this will also have, at some time in their lives, been on the receiving end of unwanted touching. Or behaviour that has made them feel uncomfortable… like wolf whistling (For which we must all respond graciously for fear of being told we were ugly / fat / disgusting in the first place).

But this is the thing. We’ve grown up expecting it. Even though MOST of us hate it, we know that we have to “just put up with it” because it’s just a bit of fun, isn’t it? It’s a compliment!

Does that seem like an “equal” society to you? That one sex can predominantly make the other sex feel uncomfortable? Of course there are plenty of instances where the tables are turned. Women groping men. I had a friend who would regularly grab men when she was drunk. They were visibly repulsed by it most of the time. Unsurprisingly. But I don’t condone that either. Of course not!

No one needs to touch ANYONE else, unless they are invited to. Lets stop acting like it’s OK.

PLEASE let this persuade you that we still need feminism! Having your bum pinched is a feminist issue! REPRESENT!!!!

Friday, 22 September 2017

Screen Time Revelations!

My husband and I have recently made a fascinating discovery about screen time. The result of which has been, quite frankly, life changing for us.
Since it’s become the norm to own a phone or tablet and more importantly, be glued to that device playing games or scrolling social media endlessly, there has been a lot of media attention focused on whether or not screen time is healthy for us. The blue light emitted from most hand held devices such as phones and tablets can inhibit sleep, for example. So there is plenty of readily available advice about the downside of not having to stare awkwardly into space, avoiding eye contact on public transport!
But. Did we, the Helicopters, as a family, HEED this advice? DID we? Did we heck.
Emlyn and I are as guilty as anyone of coming in from work, feeding and watering the kids, plonking them in front of the TV and then ignoring each other whilst we autonomously check our own newsfeeds in case something amazing has happening in the half hour since we last checked.
This is pretty shit parenting, granted. But I am sure we’re not alone. And I'm being glib here, obviously we’re not that bad….we don’t leave the TV to babysit for hours imprisoned into our own screen addiction. Also I think most people these days feel a bit of guilt about the amount of mindless phone scrolling they do.
With kids however, how do you know how much screen time is too much? Some kids will be naturally drawn to hand held devices. I know it can be a life saver for parents with kids on the autistic spectrum. Jodie from A First Time Valley Mam who’s son is on the scale says it helps him get to sleep every night.
Other kids will love the adrenaline buzz of playing games, watching funny videos or even just watching regular kids TV on them. This is great if you’re on long car journeys or in a doctors waiting room etc. It’s less great when you’re trying to get them out of the door for school or upstairs to brush their teeth for bed.
And then there’s the question about filters and parental controls… are they watching appropriate stuff? Are they chatting to weirdos? Eeek!
So what’s the answer? Well ….we’ve been a bit tardy to the screen-time-is-bad party. We have a 7 year old boy who’s a quite the regular to the “hand held device show” and a 3 year old girl who vaguely showed an interest in the iPad then got over it. However, we've just made a BIG stand with screen time and the results have been remarkable.
As I mentioned, we've been pretty lax with how much screen time our oldest has had. From the age of about 3 we’ve very lazily and let him take our phones (then later the iPad) to play on when he wakes up in the morning. This is because for years he woke between 5-6am everyday. It would enable us to have another half hour-hour asleep when he was younger and then a bit more time as he got older and more independent. But a young boy who’s had a good few hours on an iPad with no breakfast, is probably not going to be Mr Happy when we eventually roll our lazy butts out of bed. And yet it’s taken us years to realise this. I know, WTF is wrong with us?!
He's always been quite an angry kid but when his sister came along we put it down to jealousy. Then when he started school we thought it was tiredness. Things got particularly bad at the end of his last school term. He was permanently stroppy about everything. It was getting to the point where I thought we might have to get some professional anger management advice for him. I was gutted that he seemed so unhappy with his life and I felt like we really might need someone to help us work through whatever it was making him so frustrated.
I planned a trip to the doctor to discuss this and his issues with sleep. He’d stay up late (despite being in a proper wind-down bed routine since he was a baby) and still wake up at the crack of dawn. The day before I took him, I'd heard from a friend that she'd banned screen time with one of her sons who’d been sneaking off and watching YouTube. It had a huge impact on his behaviour. We'd been reluctant to try it really because we were cowards. We knew that the few times before when we had hidden the iPad in the mornings, he'd wake the whole house up at 5.30am singing or playing loudly.
That night though, we bit the bullet and gave him and out and out ban on all hand held screen time in the week and no longer than a handful of 10 mins intervals on the weekends. His behaviour DRASTICALLY improved. The doctor did give us some advice about sleep which has really helped too. The two things must be related. He’s currently not waking up super early and it can’t be a coincidence that he’s not allowed to race down stairs and get the iPad. He gets up and draws or plays with his lego. He doesn’t bellow the house down! Who knew?! I’m utterly gob smacked by the whole thing! Why the HECK didn’t we do this sooner?! I mean really?! What is WRONG with us!
Mornings are so SO much easier without him being stroppy and rude after being asked to put the iPad down. He's a different child. Not only has his mood improved, he's stopped being so horrible to his sister which is a bloody miracle. He spends his time either on the trampoline, writing stories, drawing or making stuff. It seems so completely obvious now…
It is still a bit of a battle sometimes. When he’s feeling tired and lazy, he’ll just want to sit down and zone out and he’ll beg to go on a phone or whatever. But we are standing firm. He’ll usually just settle for a film on the TV.
So my advice to you, at the end of this, is if you are having behaviour issues with your kids and you can’t work out why, maybe check how much screen time they get. Kids aren’t all the same but for some, it’s most definitely a perpetrator of doom! So perhaps it’s time to step away from the iPad….

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Kids Characters I want to Shag (Warning: contains graphic content)

Look, I know this is a pretty unoriginal observation. But yeah. When you’re stuck in front of kids TV for hours, breast-feeding, bottle-feeding, ironing, sorting the washing or just clinging onto consciousness for sheer life …..sometimes your loins start to stir. Don’t deny it. It’s one of the only perks of watching banal shit for hours on end, day in & day out. Fantasising about kids characters you wouldn’t kick out of bed. And if you’re like me, you’re also dissecting their techniques. Now this is a game all sexualities can play. I am a lady who likes men so mine are all male. I can’t, ahem, confirm that they are all HUMAN form but in fantasyland I don’t *think* it’s classed as bestiality. But if you are a lady who likes ladies or a man who likes mens, then I sure there are characters out there who fill your sexual boots too.

Here’s my list (in no particular order except the first one)

1) Mr Bloom. I AM OBSESSED BY HIM. I don’t even know if he’s still on Cbeebies but 'ecky thump….he gives me a wide on. (don’t click that link, those that are easily offended). I’m not even that into blonds normally. But he does something to me that makes my jaw go slack. I think it’s his cheeky “pretend” Manchester swagger, kindly “Northern” accent and the way he’s so nurturing to his veggies. Honestly when sings “My, haven’t YOU grooown”… there’s a slug trail situation on my sofa. He really REALLY gives me the horn. This illusion was shattered slightly when I saw him being interviewed about the Cbeebies Xmas panto. In real life he’s a bit of a stage school lovey. Sad times. A little reminiscent of Ollie Plimsolls from League of Gentlemen. (Put yourself into a child!) It’s true what they say, never meet your heroes.

2) Disney’s Robin Hood. This is where it all started for me. At the ripe old age
of (no word of a lie….) 6. I saw Robin Hood with that gorgeous, charismatic fox...and my destiny as a dirty old horn-bag was laid bare before me. I was smitten. He made me feel weird things in my tummy! I literally felt a bit sick when I thought about him and I would obsessively draw pictures of him everywhere. However having just had a quick squiz on YouTube for a clip to embed (oh sorry, I am breaking the fourth wall!) I’ve realised with slight horror that he sounds nothing like I remembered. I had a weird crush on a man who sounds like my grandfather. Oh god. Don’t. MOVING ON!

3) Marty from Madagascar. This is a weird one. It’s arisen because I’ve had to endure a bloody Madagascar 1, 2 & 3 marathon for the last 2 days. Chris Rock is funny as fuck. No doubt. And men who make me laugh are generally the ones I want to shag senseless. But his character in this film ISN’T sexy. He’s like a child! But a man child. So even though I am uncomfortable with myself for this, I am pretty sure in human terms a 10 yr old Zebra would be at LEAST 21...right? RIGHT??? I think my brain just shook my vagina awake from sheer boredom, to be honest.

4) Dangermouse. I thought he was SO cool. He reminded me of my super cool best mate Matthew Steel (who I also crushed on for my entire childhood). He was sarcastic and funny and brilliant. As an adult…discovering he was voiced by David Jason… oh dear. Delboy HELL NO.

5) Elvis from Fireman Sam. HEAR ME OUT…. Look I know he’s fucking idiot….but he can move! He’s got Elvis’s snake hips! I know Elvis was a hideous old, burger snaffling racist but Fireman Sam’s Elvis is a sweet, dopey, fuck boy. He can hold his hose over me anytime he likes. 

6) Kristoff from Frozen. This is a more obvious one. But I like how flipping grumpy and misanthropic he is. Also he’s big and rough. I think he’d show you a good time, rogering you silly on top of the hay bales. Sven has to wait outside though, K? Reindeer maybe better than people but I am not into performance art.

7) Victor from Thomas & Friends. OK so I’ve saved the weirdest til last. I want to fuck a train. There I said it. An elderly train as well. But he’s got a very sexy Cuban accent. And he’s so sweet. He’s got a total fuckwit as a side kick called Kevin and all he ever does is be patient and kind to him. I think he’d be a tender lover.

Obviously there are ten thousand kids characters you wouldn’t wanna touch with a barge pole...amirite? I mean I don’t even really need to mention the sex-less Mr Tumble, Mister Maker and weird-hairline Andy from Cbeebies. Then there’s others like Ryder from Paw Patrol. You know he’d be two pumps and a squirt with a red-faced apology. And Postman Pat...the fuck is his look about? He looks like a granny with his fuzzy hair and glasses. Although he HAS got an interesting shaped nose…..

That nose tho...

OK I think I better leave it there. So. There you go. My list of kids tv characters I’d like to shag. Now don’t say I am alone. Fill my comments box with your own lustful list please!

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