There's one massively obvious fact, which for some reason I've never heard anyone mention. It is that there's no better person for chatting about your kid with, than THE OTHER PARENT.

Teachers are professionals, they're doing their job, and looking after a hundred other kids too; friends with kids, well there's always a shade of distance, and comparison with their own kids; friends without kids haven't personally been there, and step parents - well shoot me because there will be some exceptions to the rule, but step parents, well they're still one step removed. I know. I've been there.

No, for sharing stories about the kid, the other parent is the best bet. One of the best bits about being reconciled with W before he died, was being able to chat about the cherub. Stuff that drove us both mad (XBox addiction), stories we both found funny(cherub getting both wellies stuck in the mud and falling flat on his face), stuff we both liked about the kid (the jokes, the gentleness).

Well the cherub's just got a 1 in his foundation course English. His essay was the best in his year - despite everything.

And saying W would have been proud is not the same as telling him at all.