Lisa Markwell: Bathtimes of the rich and famous

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The Independent Online

Celebrity insights, dontcha just love 'em? Really, there's nothing a harried parent needs more than to read about how very, very famous people feed, clothe and discipline their children.

We seem to be between slews of parenting books written by celebrities who believe they are the first woman ever to have a child and who are struck with a burning desire to tell us how they purée organic swede, drop baby weight in a month and reinstate "date night" with their equally starry husbands.

But they have been replaced by banter, in print, about "the kids".

This week we learnt that Gwyneth gives her two a bath with her in it and that Brad Pitt feeds his six Coca-Cola for breakfast.

Firstly: TMI, Gwyneth. Too much information. What makes you think anyone needs that image in their head, no matter how toned and tweaked you are and how adorably tousle-headed your offspring?

Ditto her homily about the secret of a happy marriage being having hubbie's dinner on the table when he gets home (but that's another squirm-inducing can of worms).

Meanwhile, let's talk about the Pitt-Jolie household. When I read that Angelina and Brad block their names on their children's computers so that they cannot read the latest scurrilous gossip about their health/relationship/career from a website, I rather admired them.

Policing the internet for horrible images and information is difficult, without the added layer of the very real possibility of seeing Photoshopped pictures of your famous parents in flagrante, or banner headlines about affairs with co-stars (whether, ahem, they are accurate or not). But, oh Brad. Then he goes and helpfully tells us that he gives his six children Coca-Cola for breakfast "to get them going".

Since I don't imagine that Mr Pitt is actually insane, I think he was either joking or being deliberately provocoative.

This is stuff to discuss privately with your mates over a glass of wine. In fact, Gwyneth was out on Wednesday night with Stella McCartney, Reese Witherspoon and Cameron Diaz. I wish she'd got the stories of mummy bathtime and her no gluten/dairy/sugar suppers with Chris off her chest with them.

The rest of us burden our friends when we admit we smacked Junior once when we lost control, or made a packed lunch out of faintly mouldy bread and a smear of Marmite.

That's what friends are for – not glossy magazines or chat shows.

The rest of us find it unhelpful and later, when your children are grown up and can search you on the net, they won't thank you either.