At a birthday party last weekend, I got stuck with “That Mom.” Oh, you know the one — the mom you dread seeing at school functions, parties, playgrounds, and park outings? Sure, there are different types of “That Mom,” and different tactics to diffuse her bothersome traits or at least escape them.
Here’s a list of the most annoying moms I’ve come across and how to deal with them. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be able to avoid them before they trap you, or at least make yourself disappear faster than David Copperfield at a One Direction concert (I don’t have insider info on whether David Copperfield dislikes One Direction… I just imagine he wouldn’t want to be there).
1. PMS Pam: Talking with this “depress-fest” is more sobering than watching an aged Gary Busey perform live. Her weighty chit chat will include talk of diseases that could strike at any time, children who were poisoned by school lunches, and Botox gone horribly, irreversibly wrong. After a few short minutes, you’ll be sucked into an abyss of worry and despair that will have you questioning your safety, your health, and your marriage. Rule of Thumb: Never talk to her alone, as it will take another friend to pull you from the pit (hope that friend comes bearing cocktails)!
2. Fend For Yourself Fran: This mom sees your child as her respite. Your kid is distracting hers, so that she can get a moment of peace, a glass of wine, a few minutes to read “Mommy Porn.” She’s not concerned with what the kids are doing, as long as they’re doing it quietly… and far away. You may come to her house to find your child, miserable, hungry, bruised, or locked in a bathroom, which she will have no explanation for, as she was unaware your child needed supervision… or a glass of water, or a Bandaid, or some protective gear. Rule of Thumb: Always have her kid at your house or send yours over to hers with a survival kit.
3. Know it all Nicole: This mom is like Kris Jenner, but she won’t take your family to Hawaii. She will, however, advise you how to be a better mom and wife, because well, who doesn’t like unsolicited advice on parenting and marriage? She’ll tell you whether you should or shouldn’t vaccinate, how to get your whites their whitest, and why fast food is making your children dumb. Rule of Thumb: If you want her to impart her wisdom elsewhere, bring up a blush-worthy topic like blow jobs. If she doesn’t run for the hills, hear her out — you can never know too much about blow jobs — when she’s done, bring up vibrators.
4. Donna Droner: Talking to Donna will make you wish you had a cyanide pellet. This chatty chick finds every detail of her stories not only imperative, but scintillating — whether she’s describing how she rescheduled her children’s annual checkups, or rattling off her 39-step trick to get discoloration out of grout. Throughout your pow-wow you’ll feign interest and nod politely, while wondering if plastic party knives are strong enough to perform Hari Kari. Rule of Thumb: Take a fake call. If you’re not holding your phone, pick up anything, hold it to your ear and answer it.
5. Braggy Beth: This gal will make you question whether your child is stupid, lazy, or socially inept. No matter what your kid’s accomplishments are, Beth’s kids did it better, and did it earlier. “Your daughter doesn’t know her alphabet yet? Have you had that looked into? I mean, I’m sure she’s fine. It’s just that my Lily is just really advanced. She probably learned it in the womb — I mean, we taught her French in the womb. Does yours speak French yet? Sorry, that was insensitive… she barely speaks English.” Listening to her talk will bring out a shameful side of you that wants to give her perfect little angel the finger. Rule of Thumb: Don’t give her kid the finger… kick her in the shin and run.
6. TMI Tammy: Tammy is like a bad Facebook status in the flesh. She feels that the disgusting details of the ooze in her son’s ear and the consistency of her daughter’s last bowel movement is lunchtime fare. Though you may only know her from “Meet the Teacher Night,” you somehow also know that she has an inverted uterus and hence prefers it doggy style. Rule of Thumb: TMI Tammy can work in details that would make Eminem blush, so stick to “Hi” and “Bye” and NEVER ask how she’s doing.
7. Delusional Denise: DeeDee has no clue what her child is REALLY like. She’s blissfully unaware that her darling offspring, whom you’ve seen suffocate a baby bunny, could do any wrong. If confronted, Denise will emphatically deny that it was her little angel, she’ll explain how it was surely an accident, or she’ll complain that her child always seems to be the scapegoat. Rule of Thumb: Keep yourself your kids and your pets as far away as possible — Denise’s kids are the ones who grow up to be serial killers.
8. Stalky Samantha: Samantha wants your life. She will sidle her way into plans with you. She’ll make sure her kids get close to your kids, sign them up for the same activities, clubs, teams, and classes. She’ll call other people to determine where you are at any given time. Her covert detective skills include frequent drive-bys, constant contact through scouring pictures and updates on social media, and oddly “running into you” like, everywhere. Rule of Thumb: Be careful with this one, as we all know how stalker movies turn out… plus you’re probably convinced she has weird super powers like super hearing or ESP. (Well, that’s just silly because she’s actually a vampire.)
9. Judgy Julie: This delightful mom is assessing your every move. On play dates, she’s estimating how many toys you have in your dining room, the sugar content in your pantry, and when you last dusted your blinds. Her goal is simple: find enough evidence to confirm what she suspected all along: She is better than you. Rule of Thumb: Be careful how much you let Judgy Julie see because she doesn’t keep her verdicts to herself. Yep, the high fructose corn syrup snacks you offered up as team mom could be the talk of the next PTA meeting.
10. Me Me Mimi: “Enough about you, more about Mimi,” is her slogan. “What? Your child is allergic to peanuts and went into anaphylactic shock at school? I totally know what that’s like. That happens to my little Carly with chocolate. I mean, she’s not allergic, but it does a number on her tummy. Last Halloween she had such a bellyache… as you can imagine, it was awful.” Rule of Thumb: Avoid this time suck at all costs, as even a nod in her direction opens a door for her to tell you more about herself and her family… AND DON’T GET HER STARTED ON HER DELIVERY STORY!
Some days I may fall into at least one of these categories (I mean I had to be a Judgy Judy to write this), but I like to believe those days are few and far between. Of course.