The Kids Will Be Fine
Guilt-Free Motherhood for Thoroughly Modern Women
By Daisy Waugh
(Metropolitan Books, Hardcover, 9781627790123, 240pp.)
Publication Date: April 29, 2014
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A bracing, hilarious manifesto for motherhood as it ought to be: spontaneous, loving, and just a little bit selfish
Pre-chewing toddler food. Flash cards for two-year-olds. Endless hours of school gatherings to sit through in smiling silence. How did motherhood—which even under the best circumstances comes with a million small costs and compromises—become a venue for female martyrdom, verging on a sort of socially approved mass masochism? How did the great natural force of maternal love get channeled into a simpering, slavish adherence to an inflexible social norm, a repressive sentimentality festooned with hideous pastel baby accessories? How did the bar to good motherhood get set so high that it’s impossible for modern mothers not to feel like they’re failing?
It doesn’t have to be this way—and Daisy Waugh is here to tell us how to opt out of the masochism cycle. Part feminist manifesto, part hilarious rant, The Kids Will Be Fine asks modern mothers to stop confusing love with subjugation. This is a book for moms everywhere who are fed up with the constant stream of unsolicited, impractical, guilt-inducing advice directed their way; for moms who have always secretly suspected that children would turn out okay even without handmade organic snacks or protective toddler headgear. With biting wit and lancing observations, Waugh gives women permission to slough off the judgments, order in some pizza, and remember that motherhood is also about the mother.
Daisy Waugh is a weekly humor columnist writing on family for The Sunday Times of London, among other publications, a presenter on BBC radio, and a novelist. She lives in London with her husband and three children.