I really thought I was going to laugh when I first glanced at the picture above. After reading it, I was kind of at a mental stand still. I couldn’t pin point why I didn’t see the humor in this or why in fact it was starting to make my blood boil a little bit. And then, all the way from my toes still adorned in polish from last summer, came this:
I battle, day in and day out, with what has been buzzed as “Mommy guilt”. It’s that constant tug of war between what you are capable of and what you think you should be capable of doing.
I was in a rather snarky mood last night which means internally, I’m ripping myself to shreds. I sat at the dinner table and listened to my Sassy 4yo tell her daddy all the things we had done that day. As I listened, I realized that if I was not the mother she was referring to and was instead listening to a story about a different Mom, I would have said, “That woman needs to settle her ass down!” l, no doubt, would have deflected my own Mommy guilt about not giving enough of myself to my children in to a humorous slam. I realized three things after that. I really am my own worst enemy. My kids tell/show me all the time that I am enough. Mommy-ing is only a competitive sport when we let it be. Oh, and I kind of kick this Mom gig’s, now slightly enlarged, ass that day.
This all leads me to that ignorant cartoon I started you all off looking at. It’s crazy to get worked up over stuff like this, I know, but seriously? If you’re going to try to make a “humorous” point regarding teenage pregnancy (is that even possible?), could you please at least not make it at the expense of solely the mother. Who do you think is more than likely going to be raising that baby in the pregnant teenager’s belly you asshole! Ugh. Just sayin’.
I’ve kind of had it with feeling guilty. As a lovely, fellow blogging Momma said, Suck it, Pinterest! I want to vomit glitter and hot glue every time I see a recommended “craft” idea come through my Facebook feed that I know damn well some freakin’ engineering major at RIT thought up.
I don’t know where the notion came from that because a woman wants to stay home and raise her children that she is then responsible for entertaining them at every point in the day. Apparently, by letting my kids watch Scooby doo and eat something with a trace of sugar in it for snack, I have failed at “responsible” parenting. Well, shit! Here I was thinking “Go Me!” for budgeting the money well enough this week so that I could afford a nice treat for snack time. I almost let myself think that I was doing a bang up job because my kids like me at least as much as they don’t.
We all know babies don’t come with brochures titled, “How not to screw up your child”. What I think is missing from public opinion is that women are not born mothers. We have to figure this shit out as we go. And it changes on the daily. Yesterday my daughter was an angel. Today her head is spinning in violent circles and she could care less what I think is and is not appropriate behavior. I’m at a loss on this one and have probably encountered at least four epic failures on how to handle it.
I have said it before and I will say it again. If my children are laughing at story time and still breathing at bedtime, I have succeeded. I know that is the attitude I need to cling to but it’s tough.
I hear it over and over again…”they’re only small once, enjoy it”. I know. I know. And I’m trying. I do my best and some days are definitely better than others. I didn’t have a great or even a constant model of what it means to be a Mother. I’m not real sure what constitutes “enough”. So please, I could do with a little less of this…
and a little more of this please and thank you.
Leave the guilt for worthy occasions please, I have enough of those. I’m kind of over feeling like a failure when my daughter expresses herself with a Dammit! or I choose to remove the tumor, my son, from my arthritic hip.
By the way, never, ever, EVER Google the words, “fuck mom guilt”. Therapy is expensive people.
24 thoughts on “Mommy Guilt? Oh, I Thought Jacking Up My Body and Sanity Was Enough. Silly Me.”
just what I needed today. spot on and solid gold. I will be sharing this with my fb peeps!
And yeah that cartoon is fucked up.
Hey you’re very welcome! I couldn’t help myself today. A few things have happened lately that damn near forced me to write this.
Children are frankly a crapshoot. Great parents have dysfunctional kids, lousy parents have super-together kids. I don’t have children and from my perspective it seems terrifying. I feel a great deal of sympathy for all of you.
A crapshoot they are!! Love that. And especially the first poor little bastard (she’s not really a bastard, my baby daddy is sitting right here watching as the kids destroy all that is around them…go dad).
Amen sister! We try the best we can, and pray that they make the right choices in life! Where is the accountability for the children/young adults? I feel this is what is wrong today. More and more kids, and I mean young 20 somethings ( I am 32 so I can call them kids ) ;), They are often not held accountable for their own actions! Society says its the parents fault. well i’m sorry, but if a teenage girl gets pregnant, then it is because of choices she made and not her mother. Her mother wasn’t there to make that baby, but yes the mom is often raising the child. Great post!
Thanks April. I almost titled this post “quit blaming your mother you ungrateful bastards” but I thought it might be a bit much. As is, I’m sure people are thinking I am the world’s most fed up mother at this point! Maybe I am. I really just want a moment of peace and a chance to poop alone.
I’m sure you’re a wonderful mother doing the best she can. Guilt is an evil bitch. Try not to pay attention to it.
TD, with all due respect, that’s like telling a schizophrenia to just ignore the voices. Motherhood and guilt go together like peanut and butter. You’re right though… I shouldn’t give it soooo much attention.
mmmm hmmm. Now raise your right arm, start dancing in circles and repeat after me…”Jesus does not want me to play Candy Land…ever…again!”
Hahahahaha! Mine’s Monopoly, but the sentiment doesn’t change.
That cartoon pissed me off, too. Wth. As if swearing and dancing when they are toddlers is the reason the kid got knocked up? And how is that the mom’s fault?! Blergh. I make it a point to ignore Pinterest due to sanity reasons. No need to feel guilty. (Says the mom who just reached new heights of yelling this evening. Sigh.)
Yelling at our kids is like injecting guilt right into your brain. It’s so frustrating because I HATE to yell but lately it seems to be the only way to get my daughter’s attention. It’s tough.
And yes, Pinterest is the devil if you ask me.
i will be the a-hole and call BS. i am so sick of seeing those obnoxious bumper stickers that proclaim. “my child is on the honor roll” or something else equally lame. parents swell up with pride when their child does something great and wonderful, youtube & FB is full of that. but let their child do something wrong, and then we hear, “oh parenting is a crap shoot” being a parent is not a crap shoot. it’s a responsibility, one not to be taken lightly. songs, swearing and clothing won’t send your child down the wrong path but being too lenient, wanting to be best friends or being a drill sergeant will hurry them down that road. i want to stab a person every time i hear, “oh you don’t have kids?” as if squirting out pups somehow makes you holier, smarter and in tune with the secrets of the universe. OctoMom, enough said. children are a product of their parents. period. end of story. i have seen too much of what goes on behind closed doors to know the apple never falls far from the tree. being a parent is a very heavy responsibility. Mom & Dad are equally responsible. they need to teach their offspring the difference between right and wrong. they need to also understand that their kids have eyes and ears, they see what’s going on between mom and dad and they internalize it. so if you are doing what’s right and giving your kids a firm moral foundation, then there should be no guilt, ever. being a Mom or Dad isn’t the hardest job in the world. it is the MOST important job in the world. vegas on three. 1-2-3-VEGAS!
Ok. I do have to admit I was taken aback by your reaction to what I wrote. I wasn’t dismissing my own faults and the effects they have on my children. I see that every time my daughter’s temper exceeds the situation in front if her. I know exactly where it comes from and why and what I need to work on as her model to help her control it better. This was a rant more about society’s pressure for Moms to be even more than is necessary at any given time. It’s frustrating because If I have a day where for my own sanity I need to step back and not be the center of attention for my kids I feel bad about that even though I feel like I really shouldn’t. Because at the same time society always says “make sure you take care if yourself”. I re-read your response and I do actually agree with most of what your saying. But look at that first picture … Do you see how it is only the mom that is depicted as the reason for her teenager getting pregnant!? That is some bullshit! And yes…. I too am annoyed by boasting bumpers stickers. And no…you don’t know how it really works until you have kids of your own. It doesn’t make me wiser …just more of an expert you could say. Although I am NO expert! It’s early girl! I should have had more coffee before I responded! Lol
no. i get it. we all have our buttons that get pushed. i think it was chris rock who said it’s the dad’s responsibility to make sure their daughters don’t swing from a stripper’s pole. very funny but very true…
Amen, girlfriend. 🙂
That was absolutely awesome. I am tempted to apologize for taking so long to come here and read this, but fuck mommy guilt, right? That cartoon is obnoxious on so many levels and you’re right to be outraged. I am, however, so happy that looking at it produced this post.
I was hoping you got the pingback! I meant to send you an email just to make you aware of the shout out but well…the thought was pushed out of my brain more than likely by a smell coming from little man that couldn’t be ignored. Thanks for checking this one out and I’m glad other moms “get it”.