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Lauren Liebenberg: Survival Tricks for Mothers of Sons Out of the “Bad Mommy Memoirs”

Cry BabyLauren Liebenberg, the author of the novel Cry Baby, has posted a blog entry called “Your Pocket Sibling Warfare Survival Guide” in The (Very Bad) Advice Column for Parents on her website.

In this post, she gives her advice for handling sibling antagonism in four steps – with a bonus step included.

Liebenberg’s advice is thoroughly practical, as being a mother of young boys disallows rose-tinted idealism when it comes to parenting.

Read the blog entry:

Step 1: Swear, on mute

I stumbled upon this life line years ago when I found myself stranded in the check-out aisle at Woollies with someone thrashing around on the floor at my feet wailing, “But it’s myyyy turn to push the trolley!” while someone else repeatedly rammed the trolley against my shins.

I’d gone in promising myself that this time it would be different: I’d go in for the toilet paper and two Chicken Noodle Doo’s and leave with the toilet paper and two Chicken Noodle Doo’s without tears, from any of us. Yet the trolley that was now being used as a battering ram contained a half-eaten a packet of Ghost Pops which Russell had stolen and a Kinder Surprise with which I’d bought William off. I’d left him snivelling “But whyyy can’t I have Ghost Pops? You’re so mean. You’re the meanest mom in the world,” somewhere down the tinned foods aisle whose shelves Russell was mounting, and as I’d hurried, slightly, around the next corner and checked back to make sure they hadn’t been abducted by child traffickers, I was greeted with the sight of Russell sprawled on top of William on the filthy floor who was throttling Russell with his bare hands as Russell banged his head on the tiles. I will never forget the look on the face of the mother who witnessed the scene with her two innocent little girls. It reminded me of the last line in Heart Of Darkness:

The horror. The horror.

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