057: The Mummy Professor: Gaining Knowledge and ‘Winging It’ | Alexis ‘Lekki’ Frazier-Wood

No study is perfect

[Lekki Frazier-Wood]

It will comfort you to know, that having a PhD in Child Development doesn’t necessarily mean you feel like an expert when it comes to raising your own children. The decisions and choices you make for your children are just as tough, with or without prior knowledge.

In today’s episode of Mum-to-Mum Monday we’ll be discussing what it’s like for an English woman to raise children in America; how traditional roles can be turned on their heads; and how a career researching child development can influence parenting techniques. 

My guest today is SuperMum, Lekki Frazier-Wood.

Originally from London, Lekki started her career as a Social Scientist specialising in child development, and has spent 8 years living in Alabama and Texas. English-born Lekki now lives in Houston with her American husband Wes, 4 year old son and daughter of 15 months. She’s a Professor of Paediatrics, studying childhood nutrition at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. 

Before meeting her husband, it never crossed Lekki’s mind that she would marry an American or have children anywhere other than England. And having kids in a foreign land has challenged her thinking about the norms of the Southern ‘Bible Belt’ and now views parenting practises from a fresh perspective. 

Lekki offers us a glimpse into her professional and personal world, including insights into her academic study of childhood nutrition, as well as her personal views on feeling confident whilst navigating the parenting maze.

I’m excited to welcome Lekki to my show today where she will assure you that no matter what your style of parenting, loving your children means you’re already doing an amazing job.

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In this episode, we talk about:

  • Lekki’s career story that led her across the Atlantic to Alabama and into the arms of her future husband
  • How Lekki and her husband reversed traditional roles when they first had children, and the affect it had on them
  • Why Lekki made the decision, even before she was pregnant, to commit to her career and return to work as soon as possible
  • How parenting in the United States is ‘unbelievably different’ to parenting in the UK
  • What left Lekki with her jaw open and her eyes wide saying ‘Oh my goodness, what have I done’
  • Which country is more reflective, more self-judgemental, and more heated about the styles of parenting
  • Why ‘winging it’ sometimes beats reading parenting books
  • Some shared knowledge about the nutritional study of children that she is currently undertaking



 Hope you enjoy todays show!


Tell me what you think?

If you want to leave a comment for Lekki, whether it’s about her research in child development or your own thoughts on raising children as an ex-pat, then we’d love you to come and say hello.

And let us know in the comments;

Are you raising children in circumstances you didn’t previously consider? Do you use your intuition when parenting or do you prefer to do it ‘by the book’?

We can’t wait to hear from you.

Now, Go Conquer Motherhood!

Lisa York x

Show Notes:

BUZZ FEED: Social News and Entertainment



BOOK RECOMMENDATION: The End of the Affair by Graham Greene


PSSST, IS IT JUST ME?: Thanks to Lekki’s son Sam age 4 from Houston, Texas

If you would like your little one to feature at the end of my show, send me an email and I’ll show you how

FIND TODAY’S SHOW AT: www.Lisa-York.com/057

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Lisa York

Lisa believes a happy mum brings up happy kids who become happy adults. With four children aged 7, 6, 4 and 2, finding time for herself is an ongoing challenge. But she’s trying.

Lisa lives with her family in Canberra, Australia.

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3 replies
  1. Lisa York | SuperMum
    Lisa York | SuperMum says:

    Thank you too, Melissa and Debby. I really appreciate how you handled such a difficult topic in a practical yet sensitive way. I know from the feedback, that our mum listeners have found it to be very useful, Lisa x

  2. Melissa and Debby
    Melissa and Debby says:

    Lisa, we wanted to thank you for having us on your Podcast – it was truly an enjoyable experience. We so appreciated your insightful questions that enabled us to share more about how to heal after a difficult or traumatic birth. And thank you for caring so much about mums – it really shows in your podcasts, and we feel very grateful to have this opportunity to reach more women and share the message that birth trauma is real…AND that it is possible to heal. Much love, Melissa and Debby xx

  3. Lisa York
    Lisa York says:

    I hope you enjoyed this very open and honest episode with Melissa and Debby. Did you feel supported and listened to while giving birth? Let me know in the comments! Lisa x

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