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Confessions of a “Bad Mom”

Confessions of a "Bad Mom" | Twin Cities Moms Blog

{Photo credit: Sarah Elizabeth Photography}

After spending a month straight with both of my wonderful, young children, my MBFF (mom best friend forever) and I decided we needed a child-free date. We started with a nice brunch and then went to see the movie Bad Moms. The movie was amazing–funny, sweet, and thought-provoking. It inspired me to accept and actually confess my parenting faults… Hi, I’m Melanie, and I’m a Bad Mom.

Here are my top 5 “Bad Mom” confessions:

  1. I cannot stand Daniel Tiger. Despise and dislike are not strong enough words to describe my hatred for the show. My four-year old started watching it when she was two-years old. I have now seen, well, more like heard every single episode at least a dozen times. While I know research has deemed the messages wonderful, they actually make bigger issues out of nothing for my kids. In one episode, Daniel sings, “When you can’t get what you want, stomp three times to help yourself feel better.” Now when I say “no” to something, my kids’ tantrums include stomping their feet. They think the more they stomp, the better they’ll feel. No. You’re throwing an even BIGGER and LOUDER tantrum. Thanks a lot, Daniel. I was so not sad when Netflix nixed you and you moved to Amazon Prime. Even though we have Prime, the kids will never know Daniel has moved there. I am a Bad Mom for hating Daniel Tiger and lying to my kids about his disappearance.
  2. Our weekly “family movie nights” are just lazy parenting. I spend our nightly dinners trying to orchestrate cooking a healthy meal, keeping the kids out of the snacks, getting the kids to eat the dinner, and just trying to get them to sit down in their chairs. My husband tries to race home from work for dinner, but often will end up eating after the kids have already turned their noses up to the amazing meals I make. I eat alone. My husband eats alone. Further, as most parents of young children, my husband and I do not get to go out very often for date nights. So we started doing “family movie nights.” Either Friday or Saturday (depending on his work schedule), we have pizza–cheese of course for the kids–and eat on a picnic blanket in the family room while watching a movie. We started out all sitting and watching together, but now my husband and I have found the delight in “hiding” in the kitchen and actually having a meal and conversation together! The babysitter (TV) is free, the kids eat their dinner, the parents have time to reconnect. I am a Bad Mom for using family movie nights as a break from the dinner fiasco.
  3. I got kicked off the PTO. It was a gala year, so there were to be two meetings a month, or so I was told. It was more like at least two a week. I made it to as many meetings as possible, but at the time I had a newborn and a two-year old. The meetings were always during the older one’s nap time–if she skipped a nap, she would make me pay for it for days. Other meetings were during the newborn’s feedings–he would not take a bottle at all, so if he was away from my breasts for more than an hour, all hell would break loose. One would think an organization made of parents with very young children would understand this and be more flexible and accommodating. I was also working outside of the home part-time managing a volunteer program, so I know a thing or two about how to treat volunteers and volunteering my time with the PTO. I am a Bad Mom for trying to bite off more than I could chew.
  4. I make my kids make their own meals. One morning while I was in the shower, my kids made their own breakfast. I found them under the kitchen table eating the Oreo cookies I was saving to make dinosaur dirt cupcakes for my son’s birthday party. The consequences were…that was their only breakfast. My daughter would have to wait until snack time at preschool and my son, although he was only the accomplice, would be fed like a King all day at his Bubbe’s house. That night, I taught them (well, mostly my daughter) how to make peanut butter and jelly…and they did for dinner. I’m a Bad Mom for forcing my kids to “cook.”
  5. I joined a gym for the childcare. Although my four-year old is in preschool four days a week, my two-year old is only in one two-hour ECFE class (which requires my attendance). My gracious in-laws take him one day a week, but that is often not enough time to accomplish everything I need to do without my little darlings around. I joined the gym for exercise at first, but now I have found the beauty of “riding” a stationary bike while working, reading, or even just watching the news –thankfully there’s no Daniel Tiger at the gym. I can also get my haircut, enjoy a shower, have a meal, all without having to worry about whether my kids are sneaking Oreos, coloring on the walls, or opening the door to “steal mom’s shower.” I can eat without someone climbing on me or taking my food, tasting it and spitting it out. Eating a meal you don’t have to plan or cook makes it taste even better. For those two hours I can focus on me, while the kids enjoy playing. I am a Bad Mom for using the gym as a vacation from my kids.

There is too much pressure to be a perfect parent. We are all trying to survive, while also trying to enjoy these childhood years that speed by all too fast. Life is too short to worry about being a perfect parent. To all the “Bad Moms” out there, you’re doing great! Cheers!

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