Deny thy father and refuse thy name.......


When Education Editor Sean Flynn asked me to start this column two years ago (welcome to year three, by the way), I had no idea how sexy parenting was going to become.

Obviously he knew something I didn't. Vogue, Hello, OK and all the rest have turned into parenting magazines, with models sporting bumps and actresses yearning for babies. The Beckhams shine as brilliant young parents. David Beckham is a ground-breaking role model for young men, showing that being a father is something to be proud of. He's even had his children's names embroidered on his football boots.

But hold on a minute. Romeo? As in "wherefore art thou"? Excuse me while I laugh. The poor child. What if he's not a Romeo? If he's anything like his father, he may be expected to be. But what if he's not interested? How is he going to feel the first time he tries to score with a sexual partner? How will he ever live up to his name? And what if, God forbid, he actually does try to live up to his name? Romeo actually wasn't such a great lover, but he was obsessed and confused. Let's hope little Romeo is let off school when his class starts studying Shakespeare.

At least little Romeo has one thing going for him - from the behaviour of his parents, there's no doubt that he will feel loved. But that brings another thought - if Brooklyn, his older brother, was named Brooklyn because he was conceived there, where was Romeo conceived? At an outdoor performance of Shakespeare in Verona, by any chance?

Better not to think about that.

Kathryn Holmquist