Taking time to find calm in the chaos

There’s a tone some people have taken on when talking to me throughout both Lockdown season one and two. It’s subtle and I never expect it, but when it comes it really makes me question how the person sees me. ‘But anyway, how are you?’ they’ll ask, after we’ve discussed how they having been dealing […]

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THE DOG DAYS ARE OVER: WHAT A PUPPY TAUGHT MY SON ABOUT OUR OLD LIFE

My son and I got a puppy yesterday. Lots of people had warned me about how much work it was going to be, but when I’ve made up my mind about something I tend to be quite dismissive of any neigh-sayers. It’s probably not the gentlest response, but I find it quite easy to shut […]

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When the child says ‘Bo’, select her

We’re getting a puppy. I told my son, in no uncertain terms, that it was never going to happen and now it is. This tale began in lockdown. I’d taken Jackson for a walk one day – when he had started schooling from home and I had started living at work – and he asked […]

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DIVERSIFYING DAD

I’m doing a radio interview for Father’s Day this Sunday, and so earlier this week a producer got in touch to clarify a few points about who I am.

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FIRE, OH, FIRE: MY SON SUMS UP FIERY HOMESCHOOLING

Yesterday was horrendous. While, strictly speaking, it was the first day back at (home) school after the Easter holidays, I suppose parents across the country made a decision about how stressful they were going to make it for themselves. I – perhaps predictably – went full-force. I could have eased my son back in, but […]

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WFH WITH KIDS? TRY ROLE REVERSAL TODAY

I’m not going to mince my words: my son has really been getting on my nerves over the last few days. I, like so many other adults out there right now, have been attempting to balance working from home with homeschooling during what’s arguably the biggest world crisis of my lifetime. This is not normal. […]

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THE WORLD JUST CHANGED, GO EASY ON YOURSELF AND YOUR KIDS

Lots of parents and guardians across the UK picked their children up from school for the last time in who-knows-how-long on Friday this week. The abruptness, shock, fear and confusion of it all reminded me of something else: grief. And grief, at least as I experienced it, can feel a lot like pressure. What will […]

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LOST FOR WORDS: A NEW BOOK BY ME, MY SON AND MANY OTHER BEREAVED CHILDREN

This is a preview of the foreword of Lost for Words, a new book created by the Life Matters task force – a coalition calling for better support for bereaved families – to mark Children’s Grief Awareness Week 2019. The book is made up of advice and insights by children across the UK, bereaved from […]

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BRAVING THE RELAUNCH

My late wife, Desreen, was very funny. She had a completely different take on the world to anyone else I’ve ever met. For instance, after she’d given birth to our son she never really spoke negatively about wanting to lose weight or build back the stomach muscles that were cut open during her emergency caesarean. […]

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SUPPORTING THE ‘OTHER’ SIDE

Growing up in a predominantly white, middle class town in the north of England, I never really spent much time – aside from my own childhood insecurities – thinking about how it must feel to be ‘other’. That changed nine years ago when my mixed race son was born. In the early months and years, […]

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FROM HARDSHIP TO JOY: WHEN CHAT CHANGES EVERYTHING

I spent the day with one of my best friends at his new house in Cheshire on Saturday. We first met at high school and have since been through pretty much every high and low in life together. When we get together we can – and we do – talk for hours and hours. It’s […]

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