Nadia Bartel, fashion blogger and wife of former Geelong star Jimmy Bartel, has hit back after being criticised for holidaying without her toddler.
The Bartels are currently enjoying "His and Hers" cocktails in the Maldives sans their two-year-old son, Aston. And some of her followers aren't happy.
"Wow, how do you guys do it?" one mum wrote. "I could not leave my kid behind and go on holiday."
"Totally agree with you..." added another
Bartel responded to the backlash with her own message, noting that quite frankly she didn't need to explain her decision to anyone. "So you would never go on a trip without your baby?" she wrote." I miss him like crazy but I think it's important to have time with just us too. This is the first time we have left him in 2 years, but I don't need to explain myself to you as I normally don't reply to fake accounts like yours."
While the original commenter later clarified that she wasn't attacking the couple's choice, merely saying she would find it hard, she did suggest that perhaps Bartel doth protest too much.
"You obviously didn't read my message as I did say wow how do you guys do it coz I wouldn't be able," she said. "Clearly I have struck a note cos I wasn't insulting you I was just in awe that you have the strength do it."
Other parents leapt to Bartel's defence, describing that they had enjoyed child-free getaways too. "We just got back from our Maldives honeymoon child free..." one woman wrote. "We stayed in an over water bungalow. If we had our son that wouldn't have been possible... I missed him everyday and FaceTimed him every day... There are plenty of holidays to take your kids."
For one mum, a solo trip without her little one or her husband, was exactly what she needed to recharge. "I holidayed for the first time since my son was born in August this year to New York," she wrote. "My husband stayed home and looked after him. I missed them both like crazy, but mummy needed some time. Pregnancy, birth and looking after a growing baby is tough work. He's 2.5 now and didn't understand or let it bother him that I had left him, I missed him like crazy and the cuddles at the airport when I returned home were some of the best I've ever received!"
Encouraging Bartel to do what's right for her and her family, the commenter added: "Happy, refreshed, relaxed and reconnected mummy and daddy is a happy baby! You make him proud and you show him what independence is!"
Another woman suggested that two-year-old Aston was probably having the time of his life - and had hardly been left alone in front of Netflix while his parents were reading by the pool. "Sorry I missed the part where they said they left their little boy under a bridge to fend for himself?" she wrote. "Perhaps I am wrong, but in the world I live in, a two year old child is far happier with a paddle pop and a ride on one of those coin operated merry go rounds at the mall than a trip to the Maldives."
Motherhood certainly hasn't been smooth sailing for Bartel. Earlier this year, she opened up on her blog The Chronicles of Nadia, about the struggle of having a baby with silent reflux. "There were times when I would just cry. I couldn't help it," Bartel wrote. "I didn't even feel sad (which I know sounds ridiculous because I was crying) but I couldn't help tears pouring down my cheeks, I think it was my body dealing with the exhaustion of no sleep all night and the feeling of helplessness, as I didn't know what to do to help him."