Bad Mum

Magazine

24 November 2016

Why hello there Mother Hub!!

I've only gone and managed to tie down the mighty and beautiful, The Mother Hub for an interview...you can thank me later! 



Hi girls and thank you once again for agreeing to answer a few questions for Bad Mum. You must be super busy at the moment with your launch night coming up! How are you managing to fit everything in with being parents too? 

You're so welcome, thank you for asking us! Things have been pretty busy since we launched The Mother Hub two months ago, and it can be quite a struggle to fit everything in! We tend to work together most days between the school runs (with a baby in tow!), whilst trying to fit in other bits of work on other projects independently... it's not easy! Half term was quite a challenge - we split the time working from each of our houses with all four kids tagging along. We joked that it was like living in a commune! We've learnt though that you can't wait for the perfect time to get started with a business, you've just got to go for it. If you want something badly enough you can find a way to make things work. And as hard as it is sometimes, we are so grateful to have the opportunity to do something that allows us to work from home. We're also lucky to have very supportive husbands!

Can I take this opportunity to say your Essex girl campaign is amazing and such a positive message to bring for the young girls of Essex today. Being an Essex girl myself, I only know all to well what stigma is attached to being an Essex girl and it needs to change. What made you start the campaign? 

We were researching the local demographic ahead of launching The Mother Hub and googled 'Essex women'... that was when we discovered the derogatory definitions listed in Oxford and Collins Dictionaries. We were shocked to say the least! Like many girls and women in Essex, we were sick of the tired old stereotype... we've heard examples of girls as young as ten receiving inappropriate comments when they tell people they are from Essex. We launched the campaign to raise awareness and to encourage people to continue to reclaim and redefine 'Essex girl'. We were blown away by the response - our petition has received close to 10,000 signatures, resulting in a meeting with Oxford Dictionaries. We're determined to get the dictionary definitions revised and to finally ditch the stereotype. 

On Instagram today I am seeing more and more parents managing to juggle life of a busy parent and trying to achieve their dreams. This is such a positive message. Do you agree? 

Yes, absolutely! The Mother Hub isn't just for mums, but we do have a real passion for supporting ambitious mothers who are shaping successful careers and businesses around their family life. Instagram is a brilliant place to get inspiration on this front but we think it's important to make sure that inspiration doesn't turn into undue pressure to do or be something 'more'. As parents we're all doing an incredible job, no matter what stage we're at, and it's important to celebrate that.

On Bad Mum I always believe honesty is the best policy when it comes to parenting. As a parent myself we all experience good days and bad days (or aka wine days), how do you cope with the bad days? 

We absolutely agree that it's important to be honest... a problem shared is a problem halved, as they say! We all have bad days - whether you're working full time, part-time or a stay at home mum, parenting can be so tough. For us, the way to cope is to share. That's one of the great things about working together - if one of us is having a bad day, the other is on hand to lend an ear and make a cuppa (or pour the wine!).

Since you started The Mother Hub has it encouraged you to change anything about the way you do things as a Mum? 

It's not even been two months since we started the business, but what's been amazing is realising that it is possible to make things work when you put your mind to it. We both returned to work in the city more or less full time initially after having children, and we've worked independently on-and-off since then, so we know all too well the struggles of juggling a career with the responsibilities of being a mother. It's not so much that working changed the way we parent, but that parenting has changed the way we work. We're way more efficient than we used to be and crazy good at multi-tasking, like all the hard-working mums out there!

Sometimes parenting can be a hard and lonely place to be. I would love to encourage more parents to speak out as it’s always seen as a taboo subject and the British way is to keep going with a stiff upper lip. Have you ever found it tough as a parent or learnt any words of wisdom along the way? 

There's no denying that parenting can be really hard at times - we've all been there! And you're right that it can be lonely, which is why we think that communities are so important. They say it takes a village to raise a child, and that's exactly how it used to happen in the old days. Communities used to be so much closer, and mothers would have a local support network to lean on. Social media certainly helps create a virtual sense of community, and that is fantastic, but we think it's really important to try to get out there and meet people face-to-face. I [Juliet] think this is particularly important, as my husband and I moved to a new area just before having our first son, and neither or us have any family nearby, so we felt quite isolated at the beginning. I really pushed myself to get out and meet people... not just with the baby in the early days, but also taking up hobbies that helped me widen my local network of friends. It really helps to have a local group of people who've got your back - you're not alone and people love to help!

Us women are bloody superheroes and quite frankly the world would fall apart at the seams without us! What is next on your To Do list? 

We're busy scheduling events for the New Year and will be releasing details of those very soon! We've also got exciting plans for the blog and are thinking of making videos too. As for the #IAmAnEssexGirl campaign, we'll be continuing to celebrate and work with incredible women in/from Essex and will be meeting again with Oxford Dictionaries in the New Year for an update.

I know only too well what it is like to be sitting at home, scrolling through all the photos on Instagram and feeling crap because I am not doing or achieving what other mum’s are. What advice would you give to any parents that want to start up a new blog or business but don’t know where to begin? 

If you've got an idea, just get started! There's never a perfect time and you'll never feel 100% ready, so just go for it and see where your ideas take you. And don't compare yourself to others, that's crucial. What each of us have to offer is entirely unique, so it's important to celebrate that and not be distracted by what others are doing.

I cannot stand fake picture perfect photos that give parents a false message to what parenting should be. What is your view on this and do we need to see more honesty in our photos? 

Not gonna lie, we do love an inspirational insta feed with loads of white space, flat lays and gorgeously filtered pics - sometimes it can be the perfect form of escapism! But you're so right, it's really important not to project a completely unrealistic image on social media, particularly when it comes to parenting. At The Mother Hub, we try to keep it real! And we love a candid caption, even when sharing a really lovely shot.

Lastly, everyone needs to leave us with an embarrassing confession as a parent which they have never shared with anyone before, please?! Go and do a shot then write it down! 

Oh my gosh, we have so many! We've just had a proper giggle sharing our faves between us and one of the best (although not the most embarrassing, we'll save that for another time..maybe!) was when Natasha allowed her daughter to dress herself in the morning and ended up sending her to nursery with her PJ's on under her trousers! Bless her!

Thank you girls for giving up your time to do this for Bad Mum and all the luck in the world for The Mother Hub, your campaign, your launch event and for the future! You girls are going to knock them dead!

To see more details about the girls and contact details please look at the Bloody Truthful Mama section above. 



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