Review: Maternal impulsesOnce, tormented by a relentless onslaught of media-mother whingeing about the traumas of “juggling” a job and two children under the age of five (it’s all in the wrist), I asked my mother if having children really was the endless nightmare that mothers who write newspaper columns make it out to be. She thought about bit. “It’s quite tiring sometimes,” she said. That’s it.
I know a lot of people who claim not to like children, but they always have at least one exception to the rule. There’s nothing wrong with not wanting to have kids, but for the love of God don’t go on and on about not liking them. It’s like claiming that you don’t like adults, which is possible but smacks of psychopathic tendencies.
So I have no problem, in theory, with maternal impulses. I often experience them myself, but then I have to put them away in a box marked Unworkable. Children under five are particularly great: like little acid casualty mystics, but without the motor skills to make a peace sign.
My own mother has in the past said many brilliant, mad things such as “This is the kind of cinema a psychopath would attack in” and “The cat is deliberately shitting on the floor because she’s angry we made her infertile”. She also once phoned me to tell me that Rachel Stevens is Jewish, as if this meant that I too could join S Club. She stopped spitting on a tissue and then using it to clean my face a few years back, but I can tell she still wants to.
On a related note, there was once a lioness in Kenya who liked to adopt baby oryxes, which then got killed and eaten by other lions. And for all I know, she lives there to this day.
Maternal impulses: Useful in the wild, as long as you stick to your own species. 8 out of 10.