Parenting

Parenting

Oct 23 2019

Intro

It may seem hard to believe, but one day you might be a parent. And it will probably be harder and much more different than you expected it to be. Everything has changed since you were little, even what a typical family looks like. And there are hundreds of books out there that can teach you what you’re doing right and wrong.

Most people don’t need a book, though. If you decide you want to become a mom or dad, you already like kids and want to care for them. With the internet, you can ask millions of people questions about what to do when you’re confused. Or you can walk to the house next door, like your parents did when you were little, and ask your neighbor for help.

Did Amanda have her baby, or is someone else talking about parenting? Read on to find out in today’s English lesson about having kids.

Dialogue

Marni: Oh, Rafael. I am just so exhausted. I was up all night with my new baby.

Rafael:  Oh my god! How does it feel like to be a new mom?

Marni:  It’s great. I mean, I love bonding with my baby. But I have to be honest. Sometimes the responsibility is so overwhelming. I kind of miss my freedom.

Rafael:  But what about the connection? Do you feel like it’s a really gratifying bond that you have with your new baby?

Marni:  Absolutely. She is amazing. I love her to death, and I wouldn’t trade her for the world. But sometimes I just think there’s all this pressure to be this perfect mom and to do everything for her. And sometimes it’s just kind of overwhelming.

Rafael:  As much as I’d like to be in the club as far as parenting goes, that’s what scares me away from it.

Marni:  You don’t want to have any regrets, though, so definitely think it through. Having a child is a really huge responsibility.

Rafael:  I trust your judgment, for sure, and I’ll think about it. But it’s also about meeting the right person.

Marni:  That’s very true.

Discussion

Marni is exhausted. She was awake all night with her baby, and she didn’t get enough sleep. Having a baby has been a gratifying experience for Marni, so she doesn’t have any regrets. She misses the freedom she had when she wasn’t a mom, though. It’s hard to do whatever she wants now that she has such a big responsibility.

Rafael is interested in being a father one day, but not right now. Stories like Marni’s are a little overwhelming to him, and he doesn’t even have a girlfriend, anyway. He knows there’s time, so for now, Rafael is happy to hear about parenting from someone else. It sounds like a lot of work!

Do you think it was hard for your parents when you were growing up, or were you the perfect child? What’s it like being a parent today?

Grammar Point

It’s vs. Its

Talking about her responsibilities as a new mom, Marni tells Rafael that “it’s just kind of overwhelming.” This is an example of using the contraction it’s.

It’s and its sound alike, but their meanings are quite different. It is not uncommon to confuse the two, but your English will confuse other people if you use the wrong one!

It’s is a contraction for it is (or it has). As an example, “It’s (It is) a beautiful day today!”, or, “I think that it’s (it is) time to go.” This is a very common contraction to hear in spoken English.

We know that Marni is using the contraction it’s because this makes sense: “It’s (It is) just kind of overwhelming.”

Its is a possessive adjective. It modifies a noun by telling us to whom it belongs. For example, “The cat is washing its paw,” or, “The company hired its first worker.” Other possessive adjectives include my, your, his, her, our, and their.

The rule to remember is this: If you mean “It is” or “It has,” use an apostrophe (‘). If not, don’t use the apostrophe.

Which is correct, “Its raining so hard tonight,” or, “It’s raining so hard tonight”?

Quiz

  1. What does Marni miss now that she’s a parent?

  2. What makes parenting scary to Rafael?

  3. Which word does not belong?

  4. Which sentence uses its correctly?


See the full English lesson at English, baby!