Disney’s Inside out & Parenting


I felt a really over whelming sadness the other day when I say doing some work in the office and Edie had Disney’s Inside Out on in the back ground to entertain her (hey, don’t judge me, she likes the bright colours!)

The sadness came because I started to listen to the story whilst I typed and it struck me that every day my children grow, change and forget parts of their personalities that I adore. In one of the scenes the main character’s (Riley) Dad is tickling her and whereas she would normally laugh and join in (indulging the “goof ball” side of her personality, which in the movie is represented by an island – that eventually crumbles and falls into the abyss) she just stops and looks at him. It’s the last time he will ever do this with her and it effectively ends that part of her relationship with her father, giving way to a new chapter.

Pretty sad when you think about it because it’s coming for all of us. At the moment we are big goofballs in our house, we run around, scream, tickle and just generally mess about a tonne, but one day the boys won’t want to do that and they will out grow it. They’ll out grow every aspect of themselves as they are now. I hate that thought but it’s inevitable isn’t it?

I guess it’s not all doom and gloom, they might out grow their current personalities but the fundamentals will hopefully stick around – Reuben’s sensitive side, Toby’s cheek and Edith’s determination are things that I can’t see going anywhere but rather growing with them and developing. From my perspective it’s more about how little they will need and want us as they grow into teens. We often say that as teens and young adults we think our parents don’t know anything and are just generally pains in our arses trying to tell us who to be. It’s all about the teen angst, maaaannn. I guess this really just struck me because it draws such a parallel to our own family dynamic and playfulness.

I’m not a fan of the unknown – I’m a planner, I like to know what I am doing and how things are going in my world but parenting has been one big challenge to that. You never know what the next day will hold, or month or even year. You just never know. I have to ask now, what will go in place of Goofball island in our kids? Will they replace it with thoughts of fashion, a sport or maybe a love interest? What’s going to top trump our playtime?

Another part of the film that really strikes me (and I promise I’m almost done here) is the grief that her leading emotion Joy feels over the passing of time. When we are little we feel so much joy (if we’re lucky) and we find it in the smallest of places, but as we grow everything becomes so much more complex. Eventually “Joy” and “Sadness” started to work together to build parts of Riley’s character because as we grow we become able to feel a variety of emotions at the same time and they form a deeper side to us. Am I going to be able to keep up with that? That mix of emotion?

I guess only time will tell.

If you haven’t watched Inside Out with the kids (or by yourself after they are in bed – no judgement) you need to. Just be prepared to explain to them why you keep stroking their hair or spontaneously bursting into tears, ok?

H x


  1. Avatar March 8, 2016 / 4:49 pm

    We are actually going to watch inside out tonight, I’m hoping it is as good as everyone says. xx

    • Harriet March 9, 2016 / 8:48 pm

      Yay! Did you enjoy it? H x

  2. Avatar March 6, 2016 / 4:23 pm

    Ah we haven’t seen it yet, but it is on the list to watch! My son started secondary school in Sept and I have felt like this ever since! Growing up too quickly and moving on too quick

    • Harriet March 6, 2016 / 11:25 pm

      Its great, defo one to watch! It is SO hard – I hate that he is growing so quickly, but I love those new stages. H x

  3. Avatar March 5, 2016 / 8:24 am

    I’m obsessed with Inside Out! It’s such a smart and thought provoking film. My husband took my daughter to see it at the cinema and cried when goofball island fell. I watched it for the first time when my kids were in bed and it really had such a big impact in me making me think of the little things my daughter used to love that she’s now out grown. It really reminded me to enjoy the little moments with my 7 year old and my toddler twins (especially as our family is now complete and this is the last time we will have such young children).

    • Harriet March 5, 2016 / 4:12 pm

      Its one of those Disney films that really gets you in the feels isn’t it?! H x

  4. Avatar March 4, 2016 / 1:33 pm

    Am a huge fan of Inside Out, and like you, I found it such an incredible insight into how the mind works – both of adults and children. It is scary to know children can feel that level of sadness and grief, but it’s about not ignoring it, addressing it, and helping go beyond that x

    • Harriet March 5, 2016 / 4:12 pm

      Absolutely! I thought it was a really interesting film, with such a powerful message!x

  5. Avatar March 4, 2016 / 1:22 pm

    I am already dreading my 4 and 1 year old growing up. Every time each of them hit a new milestone I feel a little bit of sadness as its a new stage in both of their lives. As you say though the fundamentals will stick with them!

    • Harriet March 5, 2016 / 4:13 pm

      I know! You can’t help it can you, the bitter sweetness 🙂 H x

  6. Avatar March 4, 2016 / 1:20 pm

    We’ve recently purchased this film but not watched it yet. It’s sad how quickly children grow up and change its one of things I am dreading

    • Harriet March 5, 2016 / 4:13 pm

      It’s great Joanna, you’ll love it! H x

  7. Avatar March 4, 2016 / 12:38 pm

    We love the Inside Out movie! It certainly does make you wonder what goes on in peoples heads doesn’t it. I love how it gets kids to think about their emotions x

    • Harriet March 5, 2016 / 4:14 pm

      So much! I loved the mums head with her Brazilian pilot! H x

  8. Avatar March 4, 2016 / 11:23 am

    I’ve never seen the film but I know what you mean. What I am finding though is that when one chapter ends the next one is always as amazing as the previous, just with new things to enjoy! x

    • Harriet March 5, 2016 / 4:14 pm

      Thats true Ally, each stage brings more to love 🙂 H x

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