Category: Parent Voices

Parent Voices

‘Emmerdale’ Actress Lucy Pargeter Shares Her IVF Tips On Twitter After Falling Pregnant With Twins

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Lucy Pargeter has shared her top tips for parents-to-be going through IVF after experiencing the fertility treatment herself.

The ‘Emmerdale’ actress, who is currently expecting twins with her partner Rudi Coleano, fell pregnant on her second round of IVF.

The 40-year-old, who is also mum to 11-year-old Lola, said she’s keen to speak about her experience to educate other couples who aren’t able to fall pregnant, though she clarified that her tips are anecdotal and not scientifically proven.

“I’ve been asked for my top #IVF tips so much, [so] I’m going to give my opinion, I’m no doctor and have no medical qualifications so my advice is…” she tweeted on Monday 20 March. 

Pargeter then posted a series of tweets with her advice on choosing clinics, how couples can cope emotionally and how women can change their diet.

Pargeter’s final tweet, which encouraged couples to have support around them to cry and talk to, had the most engagement with 354 likes.

Her fans on Twitter praised her for her views and advice.

“What a lovely, unbiased view on #IVF such meaningful words,” one person commented.

The mum previously revealed she hid her first IVF attempt from her bosses at ITV. Pargeter said on ‘This Morning’ on 2 March: “I was keeping it a secret from work the first time around. 

“You don’t want to give them the indication you could be off in nine months so you have to be careful.” 

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Parent Voices

Dads Reveal Their ‘Your Mum Doesn’t Need To Know’ Moments On Reddit

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Dads of Reddit have opened up to reveal the moments they’ve whispered to their kids: “Your mum doesn’t need to know about this”.

Some of them involve the sneaky (but completely safe) times they slipped their child a treat they’re usually not allowed, but others are a bit more serious. 

Either way, these stories are for dads’ ears only, so let’s just hope their partners aren’t scrolling through Reddit. 

– locrifa – via Getty Images

1. “Usually we give our eight-month-old baths in the tub, but if we’re pressed for time I just bring him into the shower with me. A few days ago he wriggled off my shoulder, fell forward, flipped around in the air and I caught him two inches from hitting the tub floor. His mum doesn’t need to know, he doesn’t need to know.”

– TheGlennDavid.

2. “When my one-year-old shit on the kitchen floor, stepped in it, then walked around on our bathroom towels.”

-MDGiov.

3. “I took my older two sons to a baseball game. They were five and six at the time. We were waiting in line at a concession stand and the boys were both right next to me. I reached down to grab my five-year-old son’s hand and he was gone. I went into full panic mode. I was screaming his name, asking strangers if they saw him. I honestly thought he was gone. I ended up finding him, but I felt horrible.”

– Shostakovich22.

4. “Once I punctured a can of shaving cream with a pair of scissors while it rested on my leg in front of five-year-old  daughter. ‘K, mum doesn’t need to know this, I told her.’”

– Macmon.

DGLimages via Getty Images

5. “Every morning in the car while I take my daughter to school I let her have a mint. Her mum says she’s not allowed so it’s our little secret. It matters to have things which are just for you two as well as things you share with others.”

– ij_brunhauer.

6. “When I was supposed to be watching my son (but I was only keeping an eye on him) and he took crayons to our newly-painted hallway. I repainted before my wife came home from work.”

– maddawgpaul

7. “My son is only two, so he can’t really tell his mum too much. But because I only get to be with him some nights and every other weekend – I let him have chocolate milk after dinner. I always tell him: ‘Don’t tell mommy’ and he responds by putting his finger to his lips and doing a very loud ‘Shhhhhh!’. It’s the little things.”

– Frozen_Brownies. 

8. “Let’s go with the time the oldest had just learned to walk. I was ‘watching him closely’ one day, opened up Reddit, and a few minutes later he walked over to me very proud of himself holding a 6 inch kitchen knife he’d found somewhere.”

– krakedhalo.

9. “Was in a lift, carrying my youngest daughter, with my eldest standing next to me. We go to our stop, I walked out, my eldest didn’t, saw her disappear behind the doors. I then ran up the stairs to meet her at the next level, hearing her screaming all the way.”

– intenseerection.

10. “Have a five-year-old and two-year-old. Most moments [I want to hide] involve me urinating in places other than a toilet.”

– AKroegs. 

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‘Broadchurch’ Star Sarah Parish Opens Up About Losing Eight-Month-Old Daughter

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Sarah Parish has opened up about the devastating loss of her eight-month-old daughter in 2009.

The ‘Broadchurch’ actress, 48, and her husband  42-year-old husband James Murray’s daughter Ella-Jayne died due to a heart defect caused by an uncommon condition called Rubinstein-Taybi syndrome.

“The day she died she took a bottle for the first time; she held our gaze and smiled into our eyes,” Parish wrote in the Daily Mail on 11 March. 

“For Jim and I, it was very, very difficult and it left a huge hole in our lives. I now know that losing a child is the hardest thing to happen to anyone; that we had never experienced tragedy before she died.

“We had never truly understood grief or loss.”

Neil Mockford/Alex Huckle via Getty Images
Sarah Parish and husband Jim Murray.

Parish, who is mum to seven-year-old Nell born 10 months after Ella-Jayne died, said the death put a strain on her relationship with Murray.

She and her husband were grieving in different ways and she said it was difficult to know how to comfort one another in the right way. 

But the actress said that setting up their charity – the Murray Parish Trust – in memory of their daughter was a way for them both to cope with their loss.

The charity raises funds for paediatric facilities across Hampshire, The Isle of Wight, Dorset, West Sussex, Devon, Surrey, Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire and The Channel Islands.

Their latest challenge is to raise £4 million for a new Paediatric Emergency and Trauma Department (A&E) in Southampton to cover the entire South of England and The Channel Islands.

Parish said every year on her daughter’s birthday, she writes her a card. Eight months after, she and her husband mark another annual ritual on the day she died and “stay indoors with our memories”. 

Parish previously opened up about losing her daughter in August 2016. The couple said they were ready to talk about the “saddest time in their lives” because they wanted to help others going through similar experiences. 

Speaking to The Mirror, Parish said she was told at her 35-week scan her baby was “very small” for her dates. She had to be induced and had a caesarean. When Ella-Jayne was born she had to undergo blood transfusions and heart surgery. 

She was diagnosed with Rubinstein-Taybi syndrome and the couple were told she could die within 24 hours.

After Ella-Jayne died at eight months, Parish and Murray volunteered abroad at a Cambodian orphanage for disabled youngsters.

“It helped put things into perspective because otherwise it’s very easy to think you’re the only people in the world to lose a child and go through something awful,” she said at the time. 

The couple are currently organising a charity event called the “Ginormous Teddy Bear’s Picnic” from 5-11 June 2017. Find out more about the event here.

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Parent Voices

Mum-To-Be’s Bittersweet Pregnancy Announcement Captures Heartbreaking Struggle With Fertility

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A couple who waited for 953 days to fall pregnant shared the news they were expecting twins with a poignant photo.

Lauren Walker, from Texas, US, summed up the past two and a half years in a series of numbers: 452 needles, 1,000s of tears, one corrective surgery, four clomid attempts, two rounds of IVF and three failed transfers.

She shared a photo of all the needles used through IVF surrounding two baby gros, highlighting how long she’s waited to fall pregnant.

“We are overwhelmed with joy to finally announce that we are expecting boy/girl twins,” she wrote on Facebook on 9 February.  

Walker continued: “Taking out these needles by the handful to take this photograph was… surreal.

“Halfway through my hands started to quiver, my breath got short and I had to stop. I sat down, looked at it and started to cry.

“Not because I was sad about what it took to get here, but because it was a representation of my world, our world, for the past two and a half years staring back at me.

“There was a lot of pain, hope and fear behind each of these needles. Each one represents a different day, a different path, a different emotion.”

Walker explained that the hardest part of the journey wasn’t having to go through IVF, it was “coming so far, only to miscarry”.

I remember that day,” she added. “It was two days before Christmas, 2015. I thought I was in a dream. Or maybe a silent nightmare.” 

Walker added: “Feeling broken and empty physically, emotionally, and above all, spiritually. I remember nights clutching my shattered heart and empty belly and crying.”

But she said something inside her kept her going and reminded her not to give up. She was astounded when she found out, on this attempt, she would be expecting twins.

Walker said she shared her story to give other women struggling comfort and hope.

“Duke and Diana, you are already so loved,” she ended the post. “You are ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’. Mummy and daddy cannot wait to hold you in our arms, for we have carried you in our hearts for a lifetime.”

Walker’s post has already reached women who are struggling to fall pregnant.

I would like to say that this was forwarded to me by a dear friend who thought I could use the encouragement,” one woman wrote.

“Your post has moved me and given me strength to stay strong through my own struggles. So, thank you.”

Another commented: “I have tears. I’m so happy for you guys and these little miracles. I know that feeling of waiting and waiting, I still am. I have hope.”

One mother also wrote: “Thank you for sharing your story. I, along with so many, have struggled and can tell you from experience – it makes holding that precious baby that much more special.

“Knowing the tears, pain, and strength that had to come to get you to this point already make you guys super parents. Those are two very lucky little people.”

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Woman Defines What ‘Mummy’ Means To Two-Year-Old Foster Child In Moving Facebook Post

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A woman penned a touching definition of what it meant to be a “mummy” to her foster child. 

Jamie, who shares her experiences of being a foster parent in the US on her page Foster the Family, explained what happened when she picked up the two-year-old, who had spent the past five months in care.

When she brought her home, she invited her to go and meet her other foster children (“the welcoming committee”).

“She wanders around with the other kids for approximately 11 minutes before she runs into the room with a smile and says: ‘Look, mummy!’ to me,” Jamie wrote on Love What Matters on 11 February. 

“The woman she met 11 minutes before.”

The phrase made Jamie re-evaluate her definition of what a “mummy” really is.

“To this little girl, mummy meant the female adult of the house, the lady who reached something you couldn’t and refilled your juice,” she wrote.

“Having five mummies in five months, she hadn’t yet had the chance to learn what it actually meant.

“[To her] mummy meant falling asleep on shoulders, kissing skinned knees, teaching ABCs. Mummy meant helping with homework and whispering about friends.

“Mummy meant security. Mummy meant commitment. Mummy meant life-long love.”

She was pleased that at two years old, the little girl had the hope of learning that a mummy isn’t just the one woman who gave birth to you, but someone who is always there for you.

The post encouraged other foster carers and their families to share their own stories.

“When my brother came to us at 17 months old, we were his first foster family,” one person wrote. “He called everyone mummy when he wanted something, including my stepfather.

“We took care of ten foster kids and none of the others ever did that, but most were older so it might be the age. I’m glad this little girl is so loved.”

Another wrote: “We fostered an 11-year-old boy and then a seven-month-old girl, who became our daughter.

“Your post hit the nail on the head as to what it means to be a mummy (and, I’m sure, we can say the same things for the foster dads and those dads who adopt).”

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Mum Overwhelmed By Selfless Gestures Of Two Strangers On Nightmare Flight With Toddler

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A mum who was having a nightmare of a time trying to get on a flight with her toddler thanked two strangers who made the experience so much better.

Alyson Hershelman, from the US, explained she had needlessly queued for 45 minutes at the airport, causing her and her family to be delayed.

After checking in, she and her family ran to the gate just in time to see the plane take off without them.

They were put on a later flight, but were placed in seats far away from each other. The seats were both also “middle seats”, which Hershelman described as the “worst thing” with an energetic toddler.

“In that moment, you really just need one good thing to happen,” she wrote on the Love What Matters Facebook page on Friday 18 November.

“Well, we got two good things.”

Hershelman was overwhelmed when two strangers made her flight experience so much better.

“To the gentleman that switched seats with my husband without us even asking him to do so, you have no idea what such a small gesture meant to us,” she wrote.

“And to Shelly, the sweet woman that held our toddler daughter to let her look out the window (and even take a short snooze), words can’t express how truly grateful we are to have sat next to you.

“Out of all the other people on the plane we could have sat next to, we got you and we thank God.”

Parents who saw the post on Facebook commented to share their own experiences of gestures from strangers while on a plane with children.

“I was flying back (alone) with my 16-month-old son Duncan and ended up in an aisle seat between two gentlemen,” one mother wrote.

“The guy in the window seat didn’t mind if Duncan crawled all over him to look out the window. He held him long enough for my son to get sleepy and then he gave him back to me.

“The other gentleman said he had four of his own and totally understood and also let Duncan wander around in front of us (with no leg room).

“It’s so nice to have good people still in the world.”

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Julia Bradbury Calls Term-Time Holiday Ban ‘Child Tax’ And Urges Parents To Go Anyway

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Julia Bradbury has said if families can’t afford to go away with their kids during school holidays, they should just take them out of school in term time.

The former ‘Countryfile’ presenter, who is mum to Zephyr, five, and one-year-old twins Zena and Xanthe, also commented on the amount of time children are kept indoors, saying they spend less time outside every day than prisoners do.

She said if parents have the chance to take their kids on an “adventure”, they should homeschool them because it will be “educational and eye-opening”.

“We as parents are penalised for taking our children away during holiday periods because travel companies jack up prices so ludicrously,” she told the Mail on Sunday. 

“It is completely unfair. It’s a child tax – it’s cynical and the [travel] industry needs to stop being so evil.” 

Eamonn McCormack via Getty Images

Bradbury said she would support any family who wanted to take their kids out of school to go on holiday.

Advising parents, she added: “If there is a family that cannot afford to go away because prices are four times what they would be in term time, then if I was in their position I would go to my headmaster or headmistress and say: ‘I don’t have any other choice, so give me their homework’.”

The Supreme Court is currently due to rule on the term-time holiday ban after a father, who was fined for taking his daughter to Disneyland, won a landmark High Court ruling against the £120 fee. 

Two judges declared that Jon Platt, from the Isle of Wight, was not acting “unlawfully” because his daughter had a good attendance record for the rest of the year. 

Isle of Wight Council, the local education authority that took Platt to court, asked five Supreme Court justices to overturn the High Court judgment. 

The Supreme Court justices will consider whether or not Platt committed an offence by failing to ensure his daughter “attended school regularly”, as required by the 1996 Education Act.  

The outcome of the ruling is yet to be announced. 

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Holly Willoughby Worries About How Social Media Will Impact Her Kids

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Holly Willoughby has revealed she is fearful about her children using social media as they grow up.

The 36-year-old, who is mum to seven-year-old Harry, five-year-old Belle and Chester, two, said she doesn’t have the “answers yet”.

Willoughby said she understands how difficult it is for children today to get away from negative influences and bullies online. 

“When we were kids we’d go home and at least we’d have hours where nobody could get to you and you could just regather your thoughts,” she told The Evening Standard.

“Now it’s just not like that and we’ve seen how serious it gets: children taking their own lives.” 

Willoughby said she has been listening with “open ears” when topics such as this arise on ‘This Morning’.

“I don’t know if I’ve got the answers yet, I know if you keep lines of communication open with your children that really helps and I think that’s all you can do,” she added.

Willoughby said she didn’t think banning kids from social media was the way to go, because then they would stick out for being different and because they can be a good way to socialise.

For parents worrying on how to approach social media with their children, Peter Coe, an academic and lecturer in Law at Aston University, has previously come up with a “green cross code”, which has the acronym ‘PAUSE’. 

Coe said: “The acronym, PAUSE, is in itself good advice, encouraging young people to detach from the immediacy of social media and avoid the potential pitfalls of a fleeting or emotional response.

“An awareness of the permanence of posts is vital, so that the seemingly acceptable or inconsequential doesn’t undermine your reputation down the road.

“As we teach young people the birds and the bees of social media, encouraging them to keep one eye on the future should be a big part of it.”

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Rebekah Vardy Opens Up About Postnatal Depression And Trolls Wishing Her Son Stillborn On ‘Loose Women’

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Rebekah Vardy has opened up about the “horrific trolls” who wished her son stillborn, as well as revealing she suffered from postnatal depression.

The 34-year-old appeared on ‘Loose Women’ discussing motherhood and spoke about being on the receiving end of Twitter abuse.

Vardy, who gave birth to her second child with Jamie Vardy in January 2017, said she refuses to let the trolls win.

“It was horrific,” she said on ‘Loose Women’ on 22 March. “It was wishing stillbirth on him [Finley], really disgusting stuff.

“I don’t think I’d ever stop reading it. The minute you take yourself away from that is the minute the trolls win.” 

ITV/LooseWomen

Vardy said she has security, because to brush off trolls like it’s nothing “would be stupid”.

“They can be quite intrusive sometimes but we do it to protect ourselves and our kids,” she added.

The mum, who also has an 11-year-old daughter, Megan, and a six-year-old son, Taylor, from two previous relationships, also opened up about experiencing postnatal depression after giving birth to her first child with Jamie Vardy.

“I think people in general after you’ve had kids think you’re a superwoman, carry on, you’re fantastic with the kids and there are never any issues,” she said.

“It’s a really taboo subject, postnatal depression. It was hard sometimes, I didn’t even want to get out of bed. 

“It was very much real.”

‘Loose Women’ airs on ITV on weekdays from 12.30pm.

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Gay Couple’s Love Song Parody To Future Baby Is A Success As They Adopt Their First Child

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When Joe Morales and Joey Famoso took inspiration from Meghan Trainor’s ‘Dear Future Husband’ song to adopt, they were probably unaware how successful it would be.

But only three months after recording a parody to Trainor’s To My Future Husband, the gay couple have adopted their first son together, Jackson.

After spending a year trying to adopt, the two dads decided to switch up the words to “To My Future Baby” including phrases such as “We won’t let you cry… we will treat you right and give you the perfect life.

“We will make everything alright.”

The video was created as part of their “Joe and Joey adopt” campaign to try and find their future baby.

joe joey video song

And it did exactly what it set out to do, as two weeks ago they welcomed their newborn in to the world.

The birth mother, who the couple are keeping anonymous, learned of their desire to adopt after seeing their video, and clicked through to their Facebook campaign page.

She is having a semi-open adoption with the baby, and will still be a part of Jackson’s life.

“I feel like we won the lottery,” Morales, 33 told Yahoo! Parenting, “He’s just so sweet.”

They described it as being completely surreal, but are absolutely thrilled to begin a family together.

joey and joey jackson

“The type of unconditional love we already have for our son was immediate, is everlasting and a truly divine blessing. We are so grateful that our son found us,” Joe added.

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