Pride or just Showing Off? 

I’m worried I could become one of those mothers. The ones I avoid like the plague and playgroups, softplay and even doctors waiting rooms. The ones whose kids are the best. And I mean their kids do better and more than all of the other kids. 

“My child has started piano lessons, and they’re only 2!”

“Well my child started at 1 and is now writing their own compositions!”

Ok so slight exaggeration but you know what I mean. But it’s hard not to sound like a bit of a nob when you’re proud of your child and you’re telling people what they can do. How do you stop it from sounding like you’re trying to ‘one up’ everyone. 

I’ve thought it a few times when talking to strangers in places like playgroups, but this week I was talking to one of my sister in laws, and came away wondering how I came across. I hope she still likes me!

As G is 14 months now and doing new things all the time, she was asking about his speech, does he say many words yet. So I listed what he can say (mainly dad and a list of animals…rarely mum…not bitter honest!). And then as the next sentence came out of my mouth, all I could think was “did that sound pretentious?!”

“And he can sign a few words”

Sign language?! I know that it’s growing in popularity, and there’s a lot of classes offering this, but as I started to explain that I’d done this by myself, by choice, and listing the things he can sign for, it was all I could think about. How I was sounding. 

Of course now I’m wondering if this post is making me worse 😀 

But when does pride become showing off? We should be proud of whatever our children learn, they’re little blank sponges that soak up loads of new stuff and that’s pretty amazing! And why wouldn’t you want to say that you did that? But when does it become unbearable? Is it the repetition or the way in which it’s said? 

What do you think makes it ‘showing off’?

Mrs H xxx

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7 thoughts on “Pride or just Showing Off? 

  1. Without a doubt showing off is when someone says something to purposely belittle you and your child.
    My oldest son was a slow talker so many mothers thought that also meant he was a bit ‘twp’ as we say in Wales. But he was far from it, he had to be assessed mentally before he had speech therapy and he stunned the doctor when he could draw triangles and complete puzzles for a 6 year old when he was barely 3!
    He’s now grown up with his own son who is also a slow talker (but not as bright) but I wouldn’t swap him for the world. His smile and laughter can light up a room!
    Keep on being proud of your children, they are all unique and they all develop in their own time scale. Sod the people who say ‘ but my little Johnny is SO far ahead’!!

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  2. I think this is something we all go through and it seems to be more with other mummies that you don’t know. I tend to get dragged into conversations at gymnastics class and all the parents seem to be the same. I guess we don’t want to feel like our child isn’t achieving the same as everyone else. It’s def pride not showing off and you are not alone in this at all xx

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  3. I agree with Cathryn, if you’re worried about being a show off you’re definitely not! There’s a huge difference between being asked how your little one is doing and purposely bringing up their talents in conversation.
    Alana x

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  4. I’ll be honest (and this sounds awful but please hear me out), sometimes I’m astounded at how much my baba can do in comparison to some babies her age and older. It’s out of genuine concern, which is even worse because then I want to go “hm, how about more tummy time?” and other suggestions to help their development, which THEN sounds like I think I know better *sigh*. Fortunately, the few people I’ve made suggestions to have found they actually helped and thanked me, but even as I’m saying it I must be grimacing.

    Regarding what my baba actually does, I only say so when prompted, as in your example, and then I do think it’s all about how you say it. If it’s another parent I ensure I say something positive (and of course genuine) about their child too, but I think if you’re just honestly saying how proud you are and don’t say it in a snarky way it really isn’t your fault if you offend anyone.

    Oh and I’ll be trying to teach her to sign too :).

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  5. I think you were just being proud! I attend two different groups, one being with the playgroup girls with Z is the oldest, even though all school year, he has been doing things this last 18 months that only now some of them are doing, yet he still don’t say a word and isn’t potty trained. They all are. They are also girls. I believe they develop at different stages. Then I go to the autism group, and here Z is one of the youngest, but to see him doing things or rather not doing, and my mind is at ease as I can see they get there eventually! So if I was you I’d keep saying how clever your little one is, and if they don’t like it then tough!

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