The problem with absolutes

I read another one of those holier than thou parenting articles the other day…I am sure you know the type, “I never rock my baby to sleep cos it sets up bad habits blah blah blah”. Worse, I read the comments. I don’t even know why I read it. I knew it would make my blood pressure rise.

This type of article isn’t unique to parenting either. When I was single there were plenty of, “don’t do this when you’re dating someone” articles.

As an aside, are any such articles aimed at men I wonder?

Anyway, I read the article and it wasn’t my first. When I became a parent I sought out every bit of information I could. People kept telling me, “listen to your instincts”. Well that’s very nice I thought, except often I didn’t have any!! I have since worked my way through all the advice and learned that my parenting instinct was actually not a voice in my head but a voice in my heart.

Here’s my problem with absolutes though….they leave you no room to change. They leave you with little room to experience the wide diaspora of life. For me it would have left me with no room to learn new things if I, “never ever” did some things in parenting. There is love and joy, fun and sometimes peace in going beyond your boundaries a bit. I truly think the beauty of life is lived in the grey areas. What I believe now is that a general philosophy of how I want my life to be, the type of parent and wife I want to b serves me better than an internal list of “never evers”.

Sure it’s safe to say I will, “never ever” be a bank robber but beyond avoiding criminal activities I don’t know what life will throw at me as I mosey down the road.

Are you a “never ever” person?

2 thoughts on “The problem with absolutes

  1. Kate Mc (@onesmalllife)

    Loverly post. And yeah. Absolutes are pretty futile. Damaging even in terms of discourse, because if you never ever {something} but then later do, well there might be plenty of folks out there wondering why they couldn’t get through life without doing that thing that you were never doing, but actually did two weeks later, without telling anyone.

  2. Emily's Mama

    The moment you become a parent you might as well accept that you might just do every single ‘never ever’ on your list, so if you’re planning on procreating, it’s probably best not to declare them too loudly! I’m sure I have ‘never evered’ lots of things that I’ve ended up doing, and not just as a parent, but I’m not about to beat myself up for it. You live and learning, don’t you?! Loverly post and a nice opportunity to reflect!


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