Tall Poppies

Thoughts are whirling around in my brain. I almost don’t want to write this piece…I’m not sure I’ve sat with it enough to have input but it’s there…the topic and I need to flesh it out. Shoot the breeze with it. See what you think about it.


This week I’ve come across:

An article on Huffington Post titled detachment parenting. A totally defensive article regarding her right to parent the way she wants to. Read it. I think it’s good, makes some sense but her defence turns into offence when she talks about a parents right to “attachment” parent. Ok maybe not offence…more like an outright attack.

The poor writer of the blog Vegie Smugglers face-booked an article this week regarding studies showing that control crying does not damage children. She happened to mention she went with the “control crying” method for her kids and out came these “wonderful” parents who would never let their kids cry…but were more than happy to lay into this poor woman about her choices. 

The Wellness Warrior launched her Lifestyle Transformation Guide this week, if the sneak peek clips are anything to go buy, this thing is huge. Check it out here. An absolute mammoth effort by Jessica Ainscough and everyone she got to help in the making of this thing. So it’s expensive. I’m sure it’s worth it but I don’t have the spare cash right now though I am DYING to get my hands on a copy. Anyway I love hanging out on the facebook page, reading comments about it and checking out other people’s reactions to it. She reduced the cost of it by $400 this week and there was one chick on there who went crazy and said that because it was so expensive she was offended and she was going to “unlike” the page and remove herself from Jess’s mailing list. Huh? What about all the free info and discussion Jess’s given in the past? No one is forcing her to buy it but I think she may be the one who needs something like this most of all.

A discussion on 92.9FM between Scary Spice and host Lisa about motherhood. Lisa mentioned she was totally in awe of Mel B after a previous discussion they’d had about her finger puppets she used to entertain her children with in the car. So that’s positive but she framed it with, “I’m such a a bad working mother because…” then launched into a story about sending her child as a fairy instead of a pirate to daycare. I don’t work and I would do something like that! Why do we continue to beat ourselves up and compare ourselves to others?

To me all these different incidences this week feel related. We are living in a culture where the “Tall Poppy” syndrome is still alive and well. In order to make ourselves feel better we tear down others because we don’t agree with their choices, and if we are not tearing down others we tear down ourselves.

Unfortunately we (especially women) add another level to this negative cultural trait and self-deprecate as a method of communication and friendship. ie “Don’t worry (about letting your kids watch too much TV, not breastfeeding etc) because I’m worse I ……(let them sit in front of it for hours, sent my child to school with his clothes on backwards etc)”

This is bad.

We feel guilty and then we start to believe the propaganda we are spreading about ourselves.

What is causing this?

Are we comparing ourselves against the heavily edited lives of other people on TV, radio, blogs then disappointed we are not living up to this standard?

I have no answers….just questions.

Would love to hear your thoughts.




  1. I followed the discussion on Vegie Smugglers with a sick feeling. I was appalled at how mean and nasty some people are. These are grown women with children and they engage in online bullying? If I see something I don’t agree with, I scroll away, I don’t need to comment. If I feel that strongly, I can hit the unlike option.
    I missed the controversy with Jess this time – but I have seen her bullied in the past when she asked for donations for her page. I think perhaps it comes with having a large following? I have had a few bullies, but nothing too serious. We all need to tune into our own intuition and do what our heart tells us is right. There can be no peace or happiness in comparing yourself to others.

    1. I have a feeling these women would be appalled if you called it bullying. Probably thinking they are exercising their write to express their opinions but they should imagine if it was their child….But look what happened to Charlotte Dawson, we are all human and we all have feelings.

  2. I think it goes from expressing an opinion to bullying when name calling and rudeness is involved. I wonder if they would say to someones face, in real life, ‘you are a child abuser’? Probably not. It seems they are not okay with CC, but okay with being a rude, abusive bully role model for their child … ironic much?

  3. Hello there girls…two of my favourite bloggers in conversation so I shall join in…in the almost 12 months I have been blogging, I’ve only been met with positive, happy, interesting, supportive comments and I am astounded at this. I think women, in general, ROCK! Those who choose not to support others (especially mums) are really a minority – they just shout the loudest! I was really surprised to see Jess lower the cost of her course – even though I couldn’t afford to commit to it, I didn’t question the value one bit. If someone threatens to ‘unlike’ you…big deal, let them…we can’t change the way we think and feel to suit others and like Sonia says…if you don’t have anything nice to say…..

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