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Things I Wish I'd Known: Women Tell the Truth About Motherhood

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THE PERFECT GIFT FOR MOTHER'S DAY! Look at the front cover of any parenting book and what do you see? Glowing mothers-to-be, or pristine, beautifully-behaved children. But the reality is, your pregnancy might be a sweaty, moody rollercoaster, and your children will almost certainly spend the first few years of their lives covered in food, tears and worse. And the experience THE PERFECT GIFT FOR MOTHER'S DAY! Look at the front cover of any parenting book and what do you see? Glowing mothers-to-be, or pristine, beautifully-behaved children. But the reality is, your pregnancy might be a sweaty, moody rollercoaster, and your children will almost certainly spend the first few years of their lives covered in food, tears and worse. And the experience is no less magical for it. In this no-holds-barred collection of essays, prominent women authors, journalists and TV personalities explore the truth about becoming mothers. Covering topics from labour to the breastapo, twins to IVF, weaning to post-birth sex, and with writers including Cathy Kelly, Adele Parks, Kathy Lette and Lucy Porter (and many more), Things I Wish I’d Known is a reassuring, moving and often hilarious collection that will speak to mothers - and mothers-to-be - everywhere.


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THE PERFECT GIFT FOR MOTHER'S DAY! Look at the front cover of any parenting book and what do you see? Glowing mothers-to-be, or pristine, beautifully-behaved children. But the reality is, your pregnancy might be a sweaty, moody rollercoaster, and your children will almost certainly spend the first few years of their lives covered in food, tears and worse. And the experience THE PERFECT GIFT FOR MOTHER'S DAY! Look at the front cover of any parenting book and what do you see? Glowing mothers-to-be, or pristine, beautifully-behaved children. But the reality is, your pregnancy might be a sweaty, moody rollercoaster, and your children will almost certainly spend the first few years of their lives covered in food, tears and worse. And the experience is no less magical for it. In this no-holds-barred collection of essays, prominent women authors, journalists and TV personalities explore the truth about becoming mothers. Covering topics from labour to the breastapo, twins to IVF, weaning to post-birth sex, and with writers including Cathy Kelly, Adele Parks, Kathy Lette and Lucy Porter (and many more), Things I Wish I’d Known is a reassuring, moving and often hilarious collection that will speak to mothers - and mothers-to-be - everywhere.

30 review for Things I Wish I'd Known: Women Tell the Truth About Motherhood

  1. 5 out of 5

    Joanna

    Humorous, honest and reassuring. Not for fans of Gina Ford, she gets quite the slagging

  2. 5 out of 5

    Emma McCleary

    My husband's work colleague gave me this when our baby was about one and I took great comfort reading each short article on the days I felt like a shit mother. I don't read parenting books but this was more a manifesto of solidarity from smart, educated, sassy women. I enjoyed each piece at the time and have forgotten them all instantly. A great read when you feel you're all alone doing the worst possible job of raising your beautiful child. My husband's work colleague gave me this when our baby was about one and I took great comfort reading each short article on the days I felt like a shit mother. I don't read parenting books but this was more a manifesto of solidarity from smart, educated, sassy women. I enjoyed each piece at the time and have forgotten them all instantly. A great read when you feel you're all alone doing the worst possible job of raising your beautiful child.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Caz

    Lovvvvved this. Don’t think I would have appreciated it when I was expecting - even though that’s when it’s aimed at - and I do think parenting in our first year has mostly been about letting things happen, but now I can fully understand where this collection of essays are coming from.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    Humouring and easy to read

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alyce Hunt

    Things I Wish I'd Known was recommended to me by a friend who used to work in Waterstones, because she said that so many pregnant customers said it was a necessary read before giving birth. I thought I might as well give it a go: it's a collection of non-fiction essays - always a fast read - and I was sure that something one of the mothers said would resonate with my experience of pregnancy. I actually ended up relating the most to the first essay in the collection, written by Adele Parks. In it, Things I Wish I'd Known was recommended to me by a friend who used to work in Waterstones, because she said that so many pregnant customers said it was a necessary read before giving birth. I thought I might as well give it a go: it's a collection of non-fiction essays - always a fast read - and I was sure that something one of the mothers said would resonate with my experience of pregnancy. I actually ended up relating the most to the first essay in the collection, written by Adele Parks. In it, she discusses her fears that her individuality would be dismissed after the arrival of her child and that she would just be referred to as "----'s mother", a worry which I'd discussed with a few of my friends towards the middle of my third trimester. "I'd had a vision that it would be just me, my husband and our baby. Naive, I know. I felt extremely connected with my baby and I adored him, but I was not always comfortable with the new people who entered my life. I sometimes found them to be a distraction from the real business of mothering." - Adele Parks This was another fear which I shared with Parks. When we learnt that the midwife and the health visitor would be appearing at the house regularly throughout the first couple of weeks of the baby's life, I was filled with trepidation. I knew that it happened to all mothers and we weren't being picked on, but I'm a very anxious person and I hate the tension that comes with knowing someone will be coming to your home but not having a definite time for their arrival. We were told it could be any time between 9am and 4pm, and I was filled with worry: what if we'd just managed to get her to sleep, and the midwife turned up and started poking and prodding at her? The one piece of advice that we kept hearing was to never wake a sleeping baby! However, reading that I wasn't the only mother who shared these worries helped put me at ease. I still wasn't looking forward to their visits, but at least I no longer felt terrified of them... And when they did arrive, they were all so lovely. It was actually nice to have some contact with the outside world, because we were living in our own little bubble for the first few days. Another valuable piece of advice came from Emma Freud: "Don't forgot to read a couple of chapters on what to do with the baby once it's born. It's very easy to use all your energy learning about the birth (which lasts about one day) and forget to learn about looking after the thing that gets born (which lasts about 81 years)." After the antenatal classes I felt pretty prepared for the birth, so I was beginning to think ahead to what we would do when she arrived... But I hadn't done any research regarding it, which was a little short-sighted. Luckily, a couple of days before reading this essay I'd picked up a copy of Baby Milestones (and will be reviewing it at some point!) so I made that a priority read and learnt a lot of indispensable advice that I used during the first few days of her life. Unfortunately, because she came early, I hadn't completely finished it... But I'm reading a week at a time, so that the information is fresh in my mind. Those two essays were my personal favourites, but the entire collection is a joy to read. Some are scarier than others, but if you're fed up with people skirting around serious topics and you just want to hear straight-up honesty, you'll adore them. The most important thing is that all of these stories are true and none of them are sugar-coated. If you want a real idea of what it's going to be like to have a newborn baby, Things I Wish I'd Known will give you that. This review was originally posted on The Bumbling Blogger.

  6. 4 out of 5

    The Book Grocer

    Purchase Things I Wish I'd Known here for just $10! An intriguing title for an honest, sometimes hilarious look at motherhood. Whether you think you know it all, or nothing, everyone will get something out of these wonderful stories that combine joy, reality and honesty without the saccharine part. Elisa - The Book Grocer Purchase Things I Wish I'd Known here for just $10! An intriguing title for an honest, sometimes hilarious look at motherhood. Whether you think you know it all, or nothing, everyone will get something out of these wonderful stories that combine joy, reality and honesty without the saccharine part. Elisa - The Book Grocer

  7. 4 out of 5

    Caro Erasmus

    This is a treat!! A collection of essays about motherhood written by proper writers, as opposed to some blogger laughing at her own jokes. Each writer focuses on a different aspect of motherhood, giving the reader a glimpse into her unique challenges and experiences. Many of the essays are genuinely funny; others heartfelt. This book really helped me in the early days of being a new mom - especially being in lockdown, this book made me feel less alone. Highly recommended!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Irma Setiani

    Buku yang sangat berkesan buatku! Lewat berbagai pengalaman yang diceritakan banyak perempuan dalam buku ini, aku belajar banyak banget hal yg sebelumnya gak pernah aku baca dan ketahui tentang menjadi ibu.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Stell

    I’m not usually one to enjoy short stories, however I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Hearing many perspectives on motherhood was captivating and great reminder that you’re not the only one thinking and feeling the way you do! A book on how parenting really is no sugar coating 🙂

  10. 5 out of 5

    Naomi

    I really didn't like this book. It was overly negative, particularly about breast feeding, and was repetitive and boring. I really didn't like this book. It was overly negative, particularly about breast feeding, and was repetitive and boring.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Annie

    Thanks to my cousin Charlotte for this one! It made me cry a lot, but that may be my hormones and exhaustion.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Arpita

    Being in my mid twenties, motherhood isn't really on my mind. Why did I then put myself through this book you ask? I'm grappling with the pertinent question of why people evenbother having kids and I hoped I'd find some answers in this book. Alas, apart from a handful of mothers who said it was all worth it to see your child smile back at you, none of the others really touched on why they chose to have a child. Other than that, there were a lot of horror stories about pregnancy, child birth and Being in my mid twenties, motherhood isn't really on my mind. Why did I then put myself through this book you ask? I'm grappling with the pertinent question of why people evenbother having kids and I hoped I'd find some answers in this book. Alas, apart from a handful of mothers who said it was all worth it to see your child smile back at you, none of the others really touched on why they chose to have a child. Other than that, there were a lot of horror stories about pregnancy, child birth and post birth stress - all of which only served to corroborate my point of - but why? I didn't realise at first, but then sure enough saw that every one of the women in the book was a writer of some kind and privileged enough to freelance. This narrow sample is of no use to me since work life balance is an integral part of the challenges faced during motherhood and that was completely left out. I suspect that to be the case for most women readers - unless ofcourse, you're a writer of some kind and privileged enough to freelance.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Juliana Rodrigues

    I think it is useful to read about another person experiences in a new area for me. Looking through that point of view this book gave me exactly what it promised. Short essays about another mothers perspective of how it really was for them the enter in motherhood, with a few things that they wished they'd had know before. Some passages were funny, a few scary and mostly of them showed with a striking honest what it was like for them to have a baby. I think it is useful to read about another person experiences in a new area for me. Looking through that point of view this book gave me exactly what it promised. Short essays about another mothers perspective of how it really was for them the enter in motherhood, with a few things that they wished they'd had know before. Some passages were funny, a few scary and mostly of them showed with a striking honest what it was like for them to have a baby.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Helen

    What a disappointment - I picked it up in the kindle sale and thought it might have something to add, but in the main it was just that appalling kind of smart assed "sassiness" and may as well have been sponsored by a formula company. An incredibly limited group of contributors - pretty much all professional writers of some sort, living in Lond - and an incredibly limited worldview. So Afsaneh Knight's wonderful piece shone out, a jewel in otherwise unexceptional drabness. What a disappointment - I picked it up in the kindle sale and thought it might have something to add, but in the main it was just that appalling kind of smart assed "sassiness" and may as well have been sponsored by a formula company. An incredibly limited group of contributors - pretty much all professional writers of some sort, living in Lond - and an incredibly limited worldview. So Afsaneh Knight's wonderful piece shone out, a jewel in otherwise unexceptional drabness.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Ann

    Funny in many parts. So I liked it. Some great tips too! “Whatever your child looks like, you may find yourself crying at some point in the hospital because everyone else’s babies are so ugly, whereas yours is so lovely. Just know that everyone thinks that about about their babies too, and feels sorry for you for having such a minger.” ABSOLUTELY the best line in the book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jemma (Aussie BookWorm)

    Another amazingly honest collection of motherhood by real mums. Full review: http://aussiebookworm.weebly.com/ Another amazingly honest collection of motherhood by real mums. Full review: http://aussiebookworm.weebly.com/

  17. 4 out of 5

    Olivia Thomas

    A really interesting read with lots of different mum's and their different experiences really easy enjoyable read. A really interesting read with lots of different mum's and their different experiences really easy enjoyable read.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Ria hartley

    Not as humorous as I was hoping for, well written but I confess I skipped a lot of the book as it got really repetitive

  19. 5 out of 5

    Milda

    Different opinios and different views of motherhood. easy to read and enjoy the reading :)

  20. 5 out of 5

    Miss Stacey L Hurlstone

    Wonderful An uncomplicated look at motherhood that is funny and varied. A collection of realistic outlooks that won't terrify mums to be but will make veteran mums laugh. Wonderful An uncomplicated look at motherhood that is funny and varied. A collection of realistic outlooks that won't terrify mums to be but will make veteran mums laugh.

  21. 5 out of 5

    alesssia

    Some chapters will make you laugh loud --and a few will put you asleep.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Donna Boultwood

    Some really funny essays.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    I give this 3.5.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Shallowreader VaVeros

    https://shallowreader.wordpress.com/2... https://shallowreader.wordpress.com/2...

  25. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    A great collection of essays about the good and the bad of motherhood. a wonderful read as you're matching toward your due date. A great collection of essays about the good and the bad of motherhood. a wonderful read as you're matching toward your due date.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Margiegie

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ahlam Mustafa

  28. 4 out of 5

    Omaima H

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

  30. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca Slater

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