In the world of Superheroes, something that strikes me as strange is that not many seem to be parents. You might think that this is because they’re too busy saving the world and generally putting their lives at risk. But I have another theory – is it actually because they lack the specific Super Powers required to successfully raise a kid and tackle work and life at the same time?
What other reason can there be for a lack of superhero parenting action? I don’t profess to be an expert, but I could only think of a few superheroes with kids – Magneto (Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver), Mr Incredible and Elastigirl (Violet, Dash and Jack-Jack) and Big Daddy (Hit-Girl). I’m sure there’s plenty more comic book story arcs which have taken Superheroes down the parenthood road, but it’s hardly mainstream.
I guess people want to see heroes fighting villains in epic battles where the world is in danger. It’s unlikely to sell as many comics or gross as much at the box office if the story involves Superheroes singing nursery rhymes, preparing pureed sweet potato or attempting to get the pushchair into the boot. Parenting doesn’t really have that battle of good versus evil – although, I’ve definitely encountered evil in Toddler L’s nappies.
It’s a shame though. I could totally see heroes and villains using their Super Powers to make life easier when kids are involved. Just picture Supergirl warming a bottle with her heat vision, Spider-Man using his web shooter to grab some wet wipes when dealing with a poonami or Jean Grey using her telepathic ability to figure out why the hell her kid is crying.
But, we don’t see this. My conclusion therefore is that parenting is hard – so hard that even Superheroes with their Super Powers are unable to do it. Instead, parents need to develop a plethora of other Super Powers – which are unique to them – to help in their daily lives. Sure, these may not be as glamorous as invisibility, teleportation or mind control, but we’d be pretty screwed without them.
Let me share a few which I’d consider to be worthy of the title ‘Parenting Super Power’:
- Being able to deal with another human’s bodily fluids without being traumatised and physically sick
- Being able to function relatively normally despite not having slept properly in over three years
- Being able to sense when your child is up to no good
- Being able to recite kid’s books without opening them
- Being able to make everything better with a kiss and a cuddle
- Being able to always finish the leftover food on your kid’s plate
- Being able to avoid using a swear word in swear word-worthy situations
- Being able to patiently wait (and wait and wait) as your child does something for themselves
- Being able to sneakily enter and exit a bedroom without waking my child
- Being able to multitask with a toddler in tow
All pretty impressive, eh? Let me just pick up on this last one for a minute though as I’ve recently been showing this off as part of the Super Powers campaign from npower. The energy giants are once more on the search to find families across the UK with extraordinary everyday Super Powers. As part of this, they (literally) came knocking on my door and put together this video:
It’s a Super Power which may not appear to be much on the face of it. But as every parent knows, even when you have a child, life must go on – it doesn’t just stop. You’ve still got to do all of those things that need doing each and every day, but you have the added task of entertaining your kid at the same time.
Dirty clothes need cleaning, pots need washing, bills need paying, dinner needs cooking, floors need vacuuming, the dog needs walking – you get the jist. Sure, it’s probably not a Super Power which is going to stop Joker, Kingpin or Red Skull from spreading terror and destruction, but it comes in really handy when you have a kid.
So those are some of my parenting Super Powers – what are yours? Let me know below!
Like this? then check out what if babies were superheroes where I compare the sprog to Superman, The Flash, Catwoman, Wolverine and The Hulk.
Disclosure: This is a commissioned post in collaboration with npower.