Chloe Sims tells her daughter a dangerous lie that plastic surgery bruises are ‘from falling off’, says Ulrika Jonsson
WHILE talking about the cosmetic procedures she’s had, Towie star Chloe Sims says her 16-year-old daughter Madison “don’t need to know about this.”
She even admits to lying about the bruises on her face and telling her daughter they are “from falling off”.
I’m not here to criticize, just to observe.
But his comments struck a disturbing chord that lies deep in my soul as a parent, and that is dishonesty with our children.
The caveat with Chloe is that she wrote that her daughter was diagnosed with ADHD and “a bit of autism”, so it would be a mistake of me to criticize her strongly.
She knows her daughter and her daughter’s needs best. We cannot escape it.
But as a mother of four children, I have always believed very strongly in being honest with my children – too honest sometimes.
I have a daughter who yells at me and walks away when I share too much.
But that’s because the problem is obviously her, and certainly not me.
However, reflecting on Chloe’s words, in so many life situations, I think it’s important to recognize that there isn’t always a happy ending.
And when it comes to the broader aspects of life – be it questions of morality, current events, or the enormous impact of cosmetic procedures – I feel deeply troubled by parents who don’t hesitate not to tell their children the truth.
Of course, we all have the right to raise our children as we see fit.
Besides being a strict and liberal parent, honesty is at the top of my priorities.
It means I’m ready to let my kids know that the world is pretty awful – people can be awful and as a mother I’m not perfect.
I don’t hide my weaknesses, I explain them.
I want my children to live in reality, not in a constructed reality. It is more important for my children to know that dangerous things exist and that mistakes can be made, but that you can learn from them.
Everything I discuss with them, I make it age appropriate.
It’s disconcerting to hear Chloe say that her daughter doesn’t need to know what cosmetic procedures her mother had.
At 16, you’ve learned a lot about life. And she has a mom in the public eye.
With a cosmetically enhanced face and an altered body like Chloe’s, there would have been a day when mom left home with small boobs and came home with bigger ones.
There would have been a time when her labia and buttocks were medium in size but suddenly swelled up a lot.
Shielding your child from conversations about things that physically change their life is detrimental to both parent and child.
It induces a damaging level of mistrust, suspicion and doubt.
Sharing information with your child, making yourself vulnerable, being honest and risking being questioned can only strengthen the relationship.
By not discussing her body modifications, Chloe claims that all women are blessed with a near-perfect body. And we all know that’s not true.
PEOPLE CAN BE HORRIBLE
I assume she hopes her daughter thinks “the magic happens” and that’s something every woman has done.
Being honest doesn’t normalize these cosmetic procedures.
But that would come down to explaining why she had done it.
In contrast, Danniella Westbrook – who has undergone a number of cosmetic procedures to repair the damage caused by her drug addiction and to beautify herself – chose to tell her daughter Jodie about it.
She, in turn, does not want to take the same path.
These two girls are part of a generation bombarded with images of perfection and alteration.
Denying someone the opportunity to have an honest conversation about this is just plain wrong. It’s dangerous, stupid and naive.
And that begs the question: what are you afraid of?
You should want your child to challenge you.
This is how they strengthen their resilience, better understand the debate and develop their empathy.
Chloe says she worries about what her daughter might encounter on social media and tells her she looks beautiful every day.
It’s very beautiful. But social media is the very fabric of life these days — especially when you’re 16 — so shielding her from what’s right or wrong is no protection. It’s rejection.
It is to reject the principles of parenthood that require us to be frank, sincere and trustworthy.
AGING IS A PAIN
The man who once had the fastest feet in the world – and insured them for £25million – now claims he would struggle to run for a bus.
Riverdance creator Michael Flatley says dancing took such a toll on his body that his neck and back are in terrible shape.
The 63-year-old, who apparently has torn muscles, ruptured tendons, a broken bone in one foot and needs shoulder replacement, says you need to make a friend of pain in the dance business.
The doctors warned him but he never listened.
Well, Michael, it’s not just in the dance world. We are just getting old.
And with age comes stiffness and muscle loss.
I suffered from arthritis in my hips from an early age so me and the pain goes way back.
I used to be a gym bunny, used to run and ride horses. Every consultant I met was begging me to stop and try something gentler.
Now I like Pilates, which is difficult but less damaging.
I tried yoga a few times, but all that mindfulness was a struggle. I couldn’t understand the meditation part.
I lay there making shopping lists, stressed about chores and deadlines and worrying about problems that hadn’t even happened yet.
To that end, I’ve come to the conclusion that if you have time for mindfulness, chances are you’re not the person who needs it.
GUILT IN THE POVERTY TRAP IN 2022
I KNOW how lucky I am. I don’t have to worry about how I will pay for my food.
And while I will frown at my energy bill, it will be manageable.
People have suffered a cost of living squeeze, which has now become a crisis. And it’s more than a little annoying.
I can’t imagine having to choose whether my kids are hungry or freezing at home.
I think of the parents who make daily sacrifices not to eat so that their offspring can.
My early childhood was ruined by lack of food and I had holes in the soles of my shoes. It was in the early seventies.
How come in 2022 many people are enduring much worse? I understand that life today is expensive and more complicated.
There are more business pressures and people are burdened with unachievable expectations and aspirations.
There are people stuck in the traps of poverty, who are made to believe that they can get out of it.
Most often or not, they can’t, because the system doesn’t serve them well.
For the millions of people on benefits who fear they won’t make it to the end of the week, the guilt must be overwhelming.
Perhaps the only reason more ears are pricked up now is because the middle classes are starting to feel the pinch.
I don’t know what the solution is, but I’m ashamed that people all over the country are hungry and can’t be dressed properly.
How did we come here?
More importantly, how can the gap between the richest and the poorest be reduced?
We all have a responsibility to do something before the gap widens even further.
ASH SERVED A LESSON FOR US ALL
I really like Ash Barty.
I had the greatest admiration for his sporting prowess but even more for his sense of humility.
She always seemed very “real”.
She openly took a break from tennis due to mental health issues a few years ago and now, at the height of her success, at 25, she admits “she’s exhausted” and plans to retire to “pursue ‘other dreams’.
Athletes and women are a special breed.
They possess an utter devotion, focus, and narcissism that has always been uncomfortable with someone like me, who has largely spent his life tending to the needs of others.
But the admirable qualities that make these people successful are also the ones that make them unique and selfish.
So, I love that Ash has the vision to see beyond a life in tennis.
To a life where she can take a back seat and not be the center of everyone’s attention.
I have a feeling this pocket rocket will find more happiness off the pitch than it ever did on it.