A month ago, we got a puppy and overnight I was catapulted back into that crippling self-doubt that
comes with being a new parent. Suddenly, everyone had an opinion on how to raise and feed our
puppy and, just like after Ruby’s birth nine years ago, I soon felt overwhelmed and confused.
I like to think of myself as a pretty confident person but when I became a parent someone took my
confidence and battered it black and blue. In the early days, weeks, months, even years, I questioned
everything I did and spent so much time doubting myself. This was made worse by the fact that what
I was doing often conflicted with the never-ending flow of other people’s advice.
However, lessons were learned and by the time I had my second daughter it felt very different. I did
it my way (still with the occasional doubt) and it was much easier. Apart from the sleep deprivation,
So, third time round, I will listen and smile when offered puppy advice. I will read articles that are of
interest to me and question good friends and family, but ultimately I will raise my puppy my way.
Kate Coulson, who founded BabyFit, has a fabulous motto when it comes to parenting: ‘No guilt, no
blame, no shame’. Don’t allow other people’s words to knock you down or make you question your
ability. Stand tall and trust your gut instinct. Remember, you are doing a marvellous job and don’t
forget to remind yourself daily that you are Amazing, Beautiful and Awesome
Now to decide whether to train the puppy using a clicker or treats? Respectfully, that’s a rhetorical
question. No answers on a postcard, please.