Things I Wish I’d Known edited by Victoria Young

Things I Wish I'd Known, Women Tell the Truth About Motherhood by Victoria  Young | 9781785780370 | Booktopia

Title: Things I Wish I’d Known
Author: Victoria Young
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Memoirs, Pregnancy
Dates read: 15th – 28th August 2021
Pace: Slow
Format: Novel
Publisher: Icon
Year: 2019
5th sentence, 74th page: And it is that now, I have finally come to love my breasts.


Things I Wish I’d Known sees some of the most brilliant writers reveal the truth of what it’s really like to be a mother.

Look inside many parenting books and what do you see? Advice about how to be a glowing mother-to-be and how to rear pristine, beautifully-behaved children. But the reality is, your pregnancy might be a sweaty, moody rollercoaster; your children and you will almost certainly spend the first few years of their lives covered in food, tears and worse, and you may spend the first few months of motherhood wondering where the heck your old life has vanished to. Not to say that the experience isn’t still magical, of course!

In this no-holds-barred collection of essays, prominent women, including Cathy Kelly, Adele Parks, Kathy Lette and Lucy Porter (and many more) explore the truth about becoming mothers. Packed with searingly honest writing about everything from labour to the Breastapo, twins to single parenthood, weaning to post-birth sex, Things I Wish I’d Known is a reassuring, moving and often hilarious collection that will speak to mothers – and mothers-to-be – everywhere.


I’m obviously feeling a little bit anxious about become a first time mum. I mean, I don’t really know someone who isn’t when they find out that they’re expecting for the first time. Which made this a seriously happy and comforting book to read. Rather than waxing on and off about how amazing motherhood is, this book is far more realistic.

Each chapter of this book is beautifully written. It deals with a multitude of realities and experiences. And, honestly, it just highlights the fact that every single parent, every single child, every single experience is different. Again, something that I found seriously comforting. I mean, it just shows that when all of your experiences are different, none of you is actually doing anything “wrong”.

Not only is this book serious in places and filled with information. It is also filled with humour. And the oddities of parenthood. It doesn’t stay stuck on ideas of what is proper, right or wrong. Rather, it focuses on a reality of… well, real life. Real life isn’t perfect and picturesque, but it is fun and worth doing. Which is the overarching message I got from this book.

I absolutely adored and devoured this book. It helped me feel a little more settled about what is to come, which, when you’re growing a human being, is kind of seriously helpful…

<- Bad GroundBlack Dragon River ->

Image source: Booktopia


5 thoughts on “Things I Wish I’d Known edited by Victoria Young

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