Almost half of parents in Australia and New Zealand do not feel comfortable talking openly about parenthood struggles with friends, family or partners through fear of being judged (45 per cent).
Social media is also a prominent cause of pressure as over half of parents globally feel as though they cannot relate to the parenting images they see on social media (52 per cent). Two fifths of parents in Australia and New Zealand claim that social media adds to the pressure they feel to be a perfect parent (41 per cent), and mums are almost twice as likely to feel the negative impacts of social media as a new parent.
The study has also found that there is currently a cycle of dishonesty when it comes to parenthood – with parents themselves feeling as though they can’t be honest and feeling as though their support network were not honest with them at this time in their life. Two fifths of Australian and New Zealand parents feel as though no other parent told them how hard it would be (40 per cent), and one third of parents wish their family and friends had been more honest about what to prepare for before they had their baby (34 per cent).
According to the research, the Top 5 things parents in Australia and New Zealand wish someone had told them are: “you’re doing a great job” (61 per cent), “nobody gets it right all of the time” (59 per cent), “trust your instincts” (59 per cent), “if someone offers to help, take it” (52 per cent) and “take the time to care for yourself – self-love is important” (51 per cent).
“The research speaks for itself – at times parents are left feeling like they are failing, especially when they are surrounded by false images of perfect parenting. As a company that stands for honesty – in our products, our advertising and everything we do – we want to change this,” said Charlie Morpeth, Managing Director of Marzena BodyCare Australasia, Australia and New Zealand distributors of WaterWipes.
To create #ThisIsParenthood, WaterWipes has partnered with 86 parents across three continents to produce a 16 minute documentary, 12 short films and a photography series that shine a light on real parenting. Through #ThisIsParenthood, WaterWipes wants to change the conversation around parenting by celebrating the realities, normalising the ups and downs, and bringing parents together through shared experiences.
“We hope that parents across the world join us in this project and share their #ThisIsParenthood journey, so that together we can change the conversation for the better, and ultimately, start to build self-belief amongst parents across the world,” Charlie Morpeth.
The films were created by Lucy Cohen, BAFTA nominated director and new mother, who comments, “as a new parent, this project really resonated with me. It is easy to understand how parents can feel a bit lost or alone within those early months. It can feel as though there are a whole host of expectations from the outside world as well as the pressure a new parent inevitably puts on themselves to get it right first time. It was a privilege to work with such inspiring parents across the world and I am grateful to all of those who willingly shared their reality. I hope the conversation extends far beyond the films themselves.”
To get involved in #ThisIsParenthood, join the conversation on Facebook and Instagram, or watch the documentary at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIrG3sJULYw –
WaterWipes, a global Irish brand, are the world’s purest baby wipes made with only two ingredients, 99.9% water and a drop of fruit extract. WaterWipes were created by a concerned father looking for a better baby wipe after discovering his new born suffered from nappy rash and sensitive skin. WaterWipes are one of the most well-known and loved baby wipe brands in Ireland and the UK. They are available in all major retailers. For more information, please visit https://www.waterwipes.com/