How to talk to your kids about #Brexit upset

Since last Friday when the results of the EU Referendum on Brexit were announced, the TV, radio, internet and adults seem to be talking about nothing else but Brexit. No matter which way your household voted it is highly likely that your children will be used to furrowed brows, heated discussions, maybe anger or elation, and possibly a fair bit of strong language.

“What’s going on??!!” wrote one friend of my 12 year old daughter’s on her iMessage thread last Friday morning. “Everyone’s going crazy :-(”

Upset & Relief signs Indeed. Many children, both young and teens, are confused, anxious and worried about what this all means. The older ones are angry that they never got to vote yet are all too aware that the older generation voted a different way from how they would have done. The younger ones are genuinely confused:

Mummy,” said my friend’s 8 year old son. “If we do get separated from Europe, will we feel it? Will it feel like an earthquake or something?”

So what do we do or say to allay their fears? Continue reading

Now is the time for leadership – starting with us #Brexit

The shocking result of the referendum last Thursday detonated on Friday morning sending people into either a tail spin of panic, or quiet jubilation.  The unthinkable had happened: the majority (by a hair’s breath) of the British population wanted out from Europe.

As most of my friends were Remain voters, my twitter and Facebook account was full of shock, horror and anger.  None of us really believed it would swing this way.  We knew people were disgruntled, disenfranchised and too ready to listen to disingenuous politicians pointing at migrants as the reason for the lack of GP appointments and school places.  But we didn’t realise it was quite this big, nor that a normally conservative populace would take the radical option, an option that most people had no idea of the full and very real consequences.

And so the proverbial hit the fan.   Continue reading

Seeing Red about Turning Blue – election results

From www.altweeklies.com

From www.altweeklies.com

They say a week is a long time in politics. Make that 3 days: you know, those 3 days before, during and after the election.

The morning after the night before, we woke up to the surprise of an easy (though narrow) win by the Conservatives; the SNP turned Scotland (and much of Westminster) yellow; voters turned out in unexpected droves; UKIP gained 3.8 million votes yet only 1 seat; and 3 of the top leaders resigned…..the list goes on.

Possibly the biggest surprise for me was the huge wave of what can be called at best ‘debate’ and at worst ‘vitriolic mudslinging’ on social media by those who didn’t vote for the triumphant Conservatives. The latter were remarkably quiet, at least on my twitter account.

All through the election campaign, uncertainty, cynicism and passivity seemed to be the order of the day. The sheer number of parties and policies to chose from and the predicted ‘no clear winner’ lulled us into apathy. But as the clock struck 10pm on Friday night when the exit polls showed a likely Tory win, twitter went mental and people saw red (well, Blue actually). Continue reading