The Blog of
Nadine Dorries
She's In Fashion?
Posted Monday, 8 September 2008 at 14:56

Being an MP isn’t always predictable. Today I was interviewed and photographed for a fashion feature in the Sunday Times, Style Magazine, out on the 28th September.

It took almost two hours to have my hair and make up done - it takes me five minutes, and they call themselves professionals!

The interview was very much about being a woman in politics. When journalists begin to ask questions about whether or not being an MP has affected my children, it makes my heart very heavy.

I am always reminded of the Labour MP, elected in ‘97, who was totally distraught and made herself ill at not seeing her children for six days and nights per week.

Thursday night is supposed to be the early night; however, you still don’t leave here until after 7. Constituency days on Friday start early and finish late, very late, and Saturdays can be just the same.

There is only one way for an MP who is a mum to ever see her children and that is to have them living in London, in close proximity to the House of Commons so that you can get home occasionally. The same rule applies to male MPs who are dads.

It’s the reason why some MPs pretend to live in their constituencies, but really live in London.

They live a pretence, which makes their every day existence one of walking on eggshells, always looking over their shoulders, waiting to be caught out by the local association or the press.

It’s a cross party dilemma. It’s a family killer and is probably responsible for more broken homes, divorces and unhappy children that anything else in Westminster.

I am fortunate; Bedfordshire is a train journey away. I was asked what advice I would give to any new female MP – it is this – you will have to work very long hours in London during term time, so keep your husband and children close.

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Nadine Dorries MP
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