Welcome to Spill the Milk, where we ask some of the UK's most famous mums and dads to reveal all about the wonderful world of parenting.
We caught up with singer and former JLS band member, Aston Merrygold, who reveals the difficulty of finding a balance between being his kids' parent and friend, as well as the products that keep their locks looking luscious.
I never saw myself having kids or getting married
I had tunnel vision, like ‘I want to do this’ and ‘I want to achieve this’ and in my head I just didn’t see time for that. I wanted to make sure I was traveling the world or doing this kind of show. I think I was very selfish when I was younger, so it was never in the forefront of my mind, until I met my partner, Sarah. They always say when you meet the one it kind of changes your perspective and in my case it really did, because now I'm sitting here engaged with two kids.
Finding that balance between being your kids’ friend and being their parent is what I find most challenging
Sometimes I've found myself getting angry and just shouting because I'm tired, I'm like 'don't do that, stop!', but then I'm like they're kids, it's fine, ‘sorry daddy's just tired’. But then other times you do have to lay down the law, because you can't have them running totally riot. They still need the right amount of discipline and that's my role as a parent. I have to be the one to educate them before letting them out into the big wide world and it's that balance and going this is fun time, this is good, then it's like right now you're tired you have to go to bed - 'No' - ok, daddy mode now, 'we're going to bed'. Then the voice changes. I find myself learning as much from them as they do from me. I suppose because they're great little manipulators as well, they know exactly what they're doing.
My tolerance towards people has definitely changed since becoming a dad
Through Sarah's pregnancy I posted stuff on Instagram and I got comments like ‘it's not a disability’ and stuff, and I’m like I know it's not a disability, but I still think from my point of view, a male perspective, it was amazing to see her jumping around and dancing at eight months pregnant. The way she was moving, getting up, didn't moan, seeing that she was tired and still getting on with it, I was like 'this is incredible'. Then you've got people who are going ‘I'm tired, I've had a really long day’ - oh what did you do? -’was just at my computer’. No, absolutely not. I've just seen this woman go through the most incredible nine months, twice, and then even these kids falling over and hitting their head. My son injured himself a couple months ago, he completely cracked his head open, and I was doing a show at the time, and his biggest worry and why he was crying was because he didn’t want to go to hospital as he wanted to watch daddy’s show. I would have been in absolute hysterics if that was me. He got back in time to watch the end of the show and was beaming. So, my tolerance for people just being tired and all this kind of stuff is like ‘no’. I salute all the pregnant women out there or these kids that are smashing their faces all over the place. They're just getting up and shaking it off.
I’ve definitely got the easier ride in this parenting relationship - I salute Sarah so much
Our two boys, as much as daddy may be the hero at times and they love to go watch daddy and spend time with daddy, whenever the boys are ill or whenever they're tired, they want their mummy cuddles. Obviously I can give them cuddles, but there's just something within that, that mother's love, that I'm still trying to work out. I think the way she loves these kids is incredible and she's so patient and thoughtful, kind, selfless, just everything. It’s not just one thing I’m learning, I’m learning parenting from her, even though we started at the same time, but she’s a complete natural. I’m in awe when I watch her so I’m very appreciative that that’s my partner and person I get to do this with.
Rochelle Humes’ My Little Coco range has worked wonders for our kids’ hair
Rochelle, like myself, is obviously mixed race so our hair types are obviously very different. My kids have kind of got that in between coarse, curly hair, loose ringlet and Sarah hates it because she's just like, ‘this leaves it too oily and this is too dry and then they look a mess’. Rochelle understands that mid path of people having slightly curled hair and majorly curly hair. So, My Little Coco for us has been great, because I have no idea. I'm just like a bit of shower gel and yeah I'm good.
Would you rather…
Stand on a piece of Lego barefoot or be pooped on by your baby?
I would actually rather be pooped on. If it's the wrong piece of Lego that you step on that will hurt you all day, whereas the poop can go away very quickly.
Watch your child's favourite cartoon every day for a month or never watch Netflix again?
I could never watch Netflix again, I’d just switch over to Disney+.
Never drink wine again or never drink coffee again?
Wow, that's really hard. I'm not actually sure I can do that.
Clean glitter out the carpet or clean felt tip pen off of the walls?
Felt tip pen. That little Flash sponge is perfect and when I hear the word ‘glitter’ my mind goes ‘no, it's absolutely everywhere’, there’s no way it’s just on the carpet.
Be able to go to the toilet and piece forever or have undisturbed sleep for a year?
Sleep all day, every day. They can sit on the back of the toilet if they want, they can sit in the sink. One year of undisturbed sleep, I will take that.
Experience your kids temper tantrums in a busy library or an airplane?
Library all day, definitely. The airplane is not fun.
Aston's new single 'How Many Times' is now out and available on all platforms here