Kids eh. Look at what they make you give.

That happens to be one of my most quoted moments from ‘The Bourne Identity’ – you know, Clive Owen in a field?

Anyway, earlier in the year I wrote about five things that freak me out since becoming a dad. Things that I normally wouldn’t have given a second thought before having kids. Things that probably seem completely normal to others. Things that fill me with a crippling sense of dread that I would have never have thought possible.

Have I managed to control these things and manage them effectively? No. There are actually more of them.

1. Dolls

I do not intend on opening a gender debate and Chez Three Time Daddy tries to be a gender-neutral place. However, to put it simply, my daughter Roo likes dolls while my sons don’t.

As Roo is our second child, I was a dad for over four years with a son before I experienced the joyful wonder of toy dolls and their grotesquely unnerving ways.

The ones with the moving yet wonky eyelids creep me out the most. Nowhere in my house is safe. I open a drawer and there is one squashed in there staring at me with its dead eyes.

And this irrational fear has nothing to do with watching Child’s Play 2 as a child.

When Roo isn’t looking I will burn them all and bury their cursed remains in four different continents.

2. Daddy, I need a poo!

I’m not a big fan of potty training at the best of times, but even when the kids seem to have mastered it the constant ‘will they won’t they’ struggle continues. You observe them, waiting for their flushed-cheeked-poo-face-of-death or random little puddles on the floor, you’re terrified of venturing outside because you know they will shit themselves in your local John Lewis and you carry a suitcase full of spare pants and wipes to be on the safe side.

Yet it’s when you let your guard down that they choose to strike with the killer blow and it is nearly always reserved for supermarkets when you have a full trolley, a large field when walking the dog and public transport.

Me: We’re going to go out now.

Roo (5yo): Ok.

Me: Go to the toilet before we leave.

Roo: I don’t need a wee.

Me: We won’t be going near a toilet for a long time – best go now, even if you don’t feel like it.

Roo: I don’t need a wee.


*Five minutes after leaving*

Roo: Daddy, I need the toilet. I think it’s a poo. I can’t hold it in.

This is as close to living on the edge as I get. How far do I risk taking my children from an accessible toilet? The dog has bolted off in one direction, another child has run off in another. Asking them to ‘hold it in’ is basically the same as asking a bomb not to explode.

Living with this kind of stress has to stop. Having our youngest child on the verge of potty training means these situations are only going to continue, so I’ve tried to prepare myself. After 9 years of parenting I have boiled down the percentage risk of this happening into this incredibly simple and easy to follow formula:

Basically, my kids aren’t going to see any sunlight or breathe fresh air until they’re 18.

3. Tomato-based stuff vs white stuff

We love tomatoes. Chopped tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, baby plum tomatoes, ketchup tomatoes, home-grown tomatoes, passata tomatoes – it doesn’t really matter. Unfortunately, our kids love spilling tomatoes all over their white school tops, t-shirts and expensive replica football shirts.

The sight of a splat of tomato-based sauce, or heaven forbid a random slippery tomato seed, on their new sparkling white clothes is enough to send me into a mild panic. I’m close to insisting our 9-year-old to start eating with a bib again or at least topless. Good job our dinner table is within a few metres of our washing machine or sink for when disaster strikes.

4. Aldi

Most people would say ANY supermarket plus kids is a nightmare, but I disagree. Aldi is the one that should definitely be considered a no-go zone with kids.

Don’t get me wrong, there are things I love about Aldi:

  1. It’s cheap.
  2. It’s also simple and I find the lack of choice refreshing. If I want baked beans, I want baked beans (unless my kids are wearing white obviously), and the great thing is I don’t have to choose between ten billion types of baked beans like at other supermarkets.
  3. It’s cheap.

However, where this all goes incredibly wrong is at the checkout. You know, the checkout where they basically play pass the parcel with you at 200mph but the parcels are your shopping, you never get to open anything and you’re not allowed to breathe until it’s over.  It invariably descends into chaotically dumping everything in the trolley before turning into a sobbing mess.

Add kids, who will always beg to help you pack but do nothing more than mess up your ‘packing system’ or sneak various packs of sweets or biscuits between the Torchon ham and Älska cider. You don’t dare question what is being thrown at you at the checkout so buy them all without hesitation and thank the cashier for the shopping experience.

5. Emails from the Microsoft Store

NJ is nine years old. He knows his way around the xbox.  Despite parental controls, he somehow seems to know my password. I get emails like this:

WTAF??? What have I done now?

For the next few seconds, my heart stops. When did this happen? Was I drunk? What have I done? Then it dawns on me: kids. Upon further inspection of email, I realise that rather than hundreds and thousands of pounds being taken from my account without my knowledge, the spend is usually for free items/items purchased from a gift card. Phew (This also applies for emails from Amazon for purchases made on my son’s Kindle).

So, these are five more things that have begun to freak me out since I became a dad, which takes the grand total to 10. Will there be more? Undoubtedly.

As with the original list, is it just me?


3 thoughts on “5 more surprising things that freak me out since becoming a dad

  1. Oh my, the toilet part, my son who is now 23 and lives away from home, always needed to go to the toilet at the point I got home or needed help with anything #triumphanttales

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