Parenting isn’t easy at the best of times – but when you’ve got more kids than adults in the equation, it becomes the task of champions.
Of course, parents with one or two babies are doing great, but there’s a certain art to micromanaging the schedules of three or more mini versions of yourself, particularly when it comes to travelling with them, dressing them, educating them, feeding them… okay, let’s be honest, doing anything with them without impending tragedy.
It’s important to remember in the moments of true madness that you’re not alone, and mums across the globe with 3+ kids are facing the same struggles as you. Here are 23 things only mums of big families will understand – we bet more than a few of them ring true for you…
1. Package holidays are the devil’s work
Two adults and two children? What the bloody hell am I going to do with the rest of them?
2. As are two-for-one theme park vouchers
See item one.
3. And hotel rooms
Get it together, Travelodge. Some of us need more than one cot bed.
4. Any car that you buy will never ever be big enough
And if you do manage to find the absolute beast you need, you can’t park it without injuring innocent bystanders.
5. BOGOF offers are the sole basis of your shopping trolley
It’s the only reasonable way to get enough crisps for every lunchbox without going bankrupt.
6. That is, if you actually make it to the supermarket, because online shopping is your SAVIOUR
No one can get lost in a digital aisle.
7. You have called every child their siblings name at least 25,306 times
Baby brain is irreversible after #3, apparently. Soz, sproglets.
8. A family photo where everyone is clean, smiling and has their eyes open is a pipe dream
Sometimes you just line up their baby photos and imagine instead.
9. You buy uniforms in obscenely big sizes so they will last at least three children
You’ll grow into it, darling. And if you don’t, your sister will.
10. Homework is a military operation
As is finding enough pens for each set of hands.
11. Your laundry basket hasn’t been empty for YEARS
You have no idea whose pants and socks are whose. They can fight it out themselves.
12. You are owed AT LEAST several years salary as a chauffeur, nurse, secretary, chef…
This is how much your mum salary should actually, technically be. Ouch, we know.
13. Especially because you have to make at least three different dinners on a daily basis
On the glorious day that they ALL decide they like mashed potato, you will weep profusely.
14. Birthdays are a monthly occurance
The only one you don’t throw an epic party for is yours.
15. And Christmas is INSANITY
So many presents. So glad Santa gets all the credit for them. *eye roll*
16. On the plus side, you do always have enough players for a board game
Even if someone goes off in a strop, you can still smash a game of Monopoly.
17. In fact, you could probably start your own sports team, if you fancied
You MAY have googled matching family football kits. Just once. Well, the Beckhams probably have them, right?
18. You haven’t experienced true, peaceful silence in more than a decade
You’ve forgotten what it’s like, and are fairly certain you won’t know again until retirement.
19. And an empty house just feels spooky
No one is walking in on you in the bathroom. You feel instantly suspicious, and wee as quick as possible just in case anyway.
20. You have been asked if you’re Catholic on several occasions
21. And get wildly defensive if someone suggests some of them weren’t planned
Even if they weren’t. You’re happy they’re here now, and that’s all that matters.
22. Other mums are in awe of your child-wrangling skills
‘How do you cope when there’s more than one per hand?!’ they marvel.
23. And so they should be, because you’re doing an awesome job
3+ parents, we salute you!