Fiona Ness: 'Yes Spencer, parenting is a walk in the park if you have money and no real job'
Someone pass me the baby wipes. Perhaps it’s because it has been 10 years since I’ve had a full night’s sleep, but I am fighting the urge to wipe the beatific, new parent glow from the faces of Vogue Williams and Spencer Matthews.
In a recent interview Matthews, God bless him, said parenthood isn't as tough as everyone says – albeit crediting that to his wife Vogue’s organisation skills, which allow their home to run smoothly. Vogue concurs: post-baby, it only takes her ten minutes to do her makeup - with one hand!
Follow Vogue on Instagram, and you can see just how organised she is. Too busy to go to the hairdressers? No problem – they can come to her! Too busy to head to the gym? No problem – she has weights at home! Not since Melania Trump decorated the White House with grammatically incorrect slogan-bearing pencils has womanhood been blessed with such exemplary prepping.
There’s nothing here that speaks to the high wire balancing act the rest of us mere mortal parents tread each day. Nothing here that explains how Vogue gets the dinner on the table in a cramped rented apartment while taking an important work call as third child dumps the contents of second child’s potty on top of first child’s head. Extracting herself from that situation without getting the rotavirus – or sacked - now that would be organised.
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ABS! I’m definitely finding it difficult to get my tum back to how it was. It’s only been a few months so I’m not stressing, I am however concentrating on abs. Thanks for this ab routine @mamawelluk . I did four sets of this 10 each side for the first three and then 15 reps for the last one! Oh my outfit is @varley ☺️
Pillory me for rich-shaming (is that a thing yet?) the happy couple if you must, but there is something about this ‘parenting is a walk in the park, people!’ narrative that grates, because it comes from a couple who haven’t the humility to recognise why.
And that ‘why’ is cash. Isn’t everything easier when you have cash, and no need to 9-to-5 it to put food on the table? Matthews is the reality-tv-star son of Laird and Lady Glen Affric. Vogue is a model, TV presenter and DJ who gets paid for showing off her life in glossy magazines. And I’m happy for that little bit of sparkle they sprinkle on my life as they go about their business, but I shan’t go so far as to imbibe parenting advice from a man wearing velvet slippers.
“If your child is screaming his head off, he's either too hot, too cold, tired or hungry. People make it sound like rocket science and it's not," Williams told Hello! Magazine.
With their baby all of three months old, Matthews would be better to hold his wheesht. For all of the parents out there struggling to comfort babies with chronic reflux, or sensory processing difficulties, or lactose intolerance, or autism, or bronchiolitis or any one of the hundreds of childhood conditions that can’t be soothed away – with our without cash - rocket science sounds easy. Experience teaches us that it doesn’t, and a little bit of ‘we know we’re lucky’ from these newbies wouldn’t have gone astray.
With a new E4 reality series, Spencer and Vogue Adult(ish), primed to follow the couple as they adjust to the realities of new parenthood, maybe that humility is coming.
Until then, hold the baby wipes. A bit of spit on a hankie will do just fine.