‘Oh my fucking god’, were the words that flew out of my mouth when I read about ‘Babypod‘, this years must-have bit of parenting kit being flogged to the newly pregnant.
According to the website, ‘Babypod’ is: ‘…a device that stimulates before birth, through music.’, but what this enigmatic tag-line fails to elaborate upon is where the stimulating takes place.
The fact of the matter is that ‘Babypod’ is a music system which you stick up your chuff. You pop a speaker up your two by four which is attached to a lead that you can plug in to your smart phone, and share your music with your unborn child. If you want to share the experience with your baby (of hearing music being piped into your vagina?) you can also connect your headphones to the lead.
There are so many things wrong with this, that I don’t know where to start. That was a lie. I really do. Strap in.
1. ‘Thanks to Babypod children begin to vocalize in the womb’. Are you kidding? Really? To me this basically says that you want to encourage them to start making noise even earlier than they do. Gurgling and laughter is about 10 % of that. The rest is screaming, crying and chuntering on about a load of old bollocks. I currently live with a 5 year old that has to narrate everything. It’s like living with a small Morgan Freeman that’s obsessed with everything bum.
2. Leave our vaginas alone! Seriously though, BACK OFF FROM THE VA JAY JAY. Whilst pregnancy and childbirth are, indeed, miraculous and wonderful, the amount of indignities that you suffer are numerous. We really, really don’t need any more thanks ‘Babypod’. If you have any inhibitions, then this will be the time that you shed them. At any given pre-natal appointment somebody, anybody could be wrist deep in your magical garden. Very often it’s someone you never met until they walked into the room 2 minutes before, snapped on surgical gloves and asked you to spread ’em (and how do you do?). Also, you will shit yourself giving birth (Yes, yes you will. Best get used to that idea now. To be honest, when the time comes it will be the least of your worries. That and birth plans involving candles, music and massage).
3. Being pregnant and / or a mother seems to rub out everything you were or achieved before you decided to grow a smaller, less coherent version of yourself, and this is an extension of that. Once you get pregnant you are not the important one, the child is. Which means everything must be done for the benefit of the child, regardless of how uncomfortable, stupid and expensive it is for you. You are now a vessel, a receptacle that carries new life, therefore you become something that stuff is done to, as opposed to a real person. If I died in a terrible accident and it was reported in the local paper (I realise I’m flattering myself here) I can guarantee you the headline would start with the word ‘Mum’ and not mention any of the other things that I also am.
4. Step away from the foetus! Is there not one bit of childhood that we can’t stop messing about with? There are numerous books on how best to raise your child in to a motherfucking genius (I’m paraphrasing here) that advise you to feed them certain foods (Avocados. It’s always avocados.), play them certain music, take them to certain groups etc… and now it’s about piping music directly in to the womb. Leave them in peace and security for the short time that they’re there (Not. Short. At. All). There’s so much pressure to make your child in to the best child it can be but, you know what? When they finally arrive they already have their own little personalities that don’t care about any of these things. For all the music groups and messy play sessions that I took my darling too, and all the frigging avocado and salmon that I fed her, she still licked bus windows. I mean, how intelligent is that? Take a chill pill baby mama.
5. It’s pink. Fuck off.