The Parental Walk of Shame

September 25, 2015

My children were so badly behaved today that I left somewhere doing the parental walk of shame dragging them, one wailing, with me.

My day started like this….

parental walk of shame

And pretty much continued.

To their credit, they did come to the hairdressers and sit like almost angels while I got my hairs cut so let me slip that golden behavior nugget in here somewhere before I continue my tale.

Apré and post hair job was revolting, including a massive scene in the library.

It was officially an accident, but one tripped the other and the hell that ensued pretty much ended with me aggressively raising my chin to a tutting old man, because they were both flipping out, and not calming down, and someone dared to eyeball them and mutter under his breath I cracked it, even though I was eyeballing the shit out of them too.

Then we went to visit my grandparents. Their great grandparents.

The visit was rather brief as one of my children who shall remain unnamed, threw a massive wobbly.

All over an apple. I swear never since the Garden of frigging Eden when those silly twerps ate the one damn thing they weren’t allowed to scarf in the whole of paradise has an apple caused such an uproar.

The unmentionable child was allowed the apple if they only asked Old Nana for it… piece of apple butter cake, right?

Bup bow.

I remember my own great grandmother.

She was scary as, bro.

She was bony and frail, with hands like claws. I barely knew her, though. I only saw her less than a handful of times ever.

She was in an old people’s home with fluoro lights and grey lino, and I remember how when she came in for a kiss she’d squeeze your cheeks so hard you had an instant pucker ready for her whiskery smacker.

I hated everything about visiting her, especially the old part. Everyone was positively ancient to my 5-year-old eyes.

But my lot know Old Nana. Sure, we’ve taken a little while to warm to her, and we don’t see her as often as we should, but come on…’ve known her your whole life.

You’ve asked her for things before.

Not this time. This time everything went bad, and we couldn’t recover. Child started keening, then crying, then wailing, and couldn’t/wouldn’t stop.

You know when you get the feeling that people of a certain generation are just thinking  – that kid needs a good old-fashioned walloping.

The thought may have crossed my own mind to be honest.

I tried kindness.

I tried cuddles.

I tried joking.

I tried stern voice.

I tried scary whisper.

After 30 minutes I was freakin’ done.

I packed that circus up and got in the car feeling mortified.

I logically know that that’s what kids do, and I remember various times growing up where I mortified my mother……. like the time when the plumber, Mister Mackie, was there and I was being all dramatic to my brother and I announced in my best Oscar winning voice  –


My mum was really cross when we got home from school that afternoon and our pipes were all fixed, but her pride in her kids was ailing…… she was mega cross.

Like I was.

It continued all the way home in the car and I asked said child why they were so sad and they replied –

“You broke my heart.”


“I miss Daddy.”

Ah, jeez. That ripping sound was my heart.

I have two parenting manuals taunting me to read them at the moment… if only I had the time.

Have you had to do the walk of shame?


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  • Reply Zanni Arnot September 25, 2015 at 7:29 am

    Oh god. It’s so difficult isn’t it? I have had the “You broke my heart” line a few times. But my daughter is definitely of the over-dramatic variety, as I can break her heart by cutting the ribbon incorrectly. x

    • Reply Danielle September 25, 2015 at 11:44 am

      It’s a new one for me….I’m sure I’ll hear it 100 times in the next few years!

  • Reply raphaela99 September 25, 2015 at 8:17 am

    Oh hon! I have done the walk of shame many times. I have had many indignant older ladies advising me as to how to deal with said situation in supermarkets and shopping centres. I have gone home in tears and needed to lie down. Munchkin would be a delight when we were alone at home, and bung it on when she had an audience when out (she was always dramatic). I have now reached the age of reasoning (about seven-nine it hits), and those times are a distant thing. Big hugs. You are doing an awesome job. xxx

    • Reply Danielle September 25, 2015 at 11:44 am

      It’s funny how some days are just so much tougher than others. Crazy town.

  • Reply San September 25, 2015 at 2:07 pm

    OUCH!!! Right in the guts (of it!) Is it appropriate for mamas to react the same way back, just lie down and cry and say well you hurt me too, or is that non PC???? Cos’ I know from my experience that making my Mama cry left me feeling SO bas I’d do ANYTHING to avoid it happening again… mind you, I was 27 yo…..

  • Reply Karin @ Calm to Conniption September 25, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    Argh yes, it’s horrific! I feel like yelling back at the judgy judgers while I march out of the shops with my three year old under my arm ‘YOU DON’T KNOW ME! YOU’RE JUST SEEING THIS MOMENT! HELL I TELL YOU’.

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