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'I loved being a mum to small children' - celebrity Emma Freud reveals joys and challenges of parenting

Emma Freud spoke about the highs and lows of parenting on the podcast. Picture: SU ANDERSON

Emma Freud spoke about the highs and lows of parenting on the podcast. Picture: SU ANDERSON

Archant

She is used to high pressure roles in television, radio and fundraising for Comic Relief.

But now celebrity Emma Freud has opened up about what is perhaps the most challenging job of all - being a mum to four children.

The broadcaster from Southwold, whose oldest child is 23 and youngest is 14, spoke movingly about the highs and lows of parenting for the Planet Parent podcast.

She described the mixed emotions of being a mother and how she could both love and loathe being a parent at the same time - but that it was an overwhelmingly positive experience, even if she is feels some relief she no longer has small children to look after.

“I’ve come out the other side,” she told journalist Marks Woods on the 30min podcast, which she later shared on her own Twitter feed.

“I loved being a mum to small children but there really isn’t a day where I’m not actively grateful that I’m not there any more,” she said.

“I loved it. There were so many things that were phenomenal about having tiny ones that were so difficult and exciting and so incredibly boring, and so brilliant and so awful.”

She also said she loved now having teenagers - but spoke openly about the challenges parenting older children in the modern world brings, most notably around their use of technology and social media.

She said there is barely a day that goes by when she doesn’t ask her children to put their mobile phones away, even if she realises that is a little hypocritical given her own prolific use of social media.

She believes setting clear boundaries about when phones are and are not allowed is important, praising the fact her children’s school bans mobiles during the day.

Raising polite and considerate children is a concern for many, but she said: “If you create an environment where kindness is rewarded, then the pleases and thank yous will come.”

And she also said that when it comes to her children’s schoolwork: “I’ve always said to them I’m not looking at achievement. The only thing I’m interested in is effort.”

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