Motherhood: The Big Fat Fuck You

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kid-middle-finger

I lost it this morning.  Really lost it.

After the kids were all dressed for school, breakfast eaten, teeth brushed, backpacks packed, I turned on the TV.  I have a rule that the kids can only watch certain channels.  There is so much crap on TV – shows geared towards teens and preteens, shows that showcase kids calling other people “idiot” and “stupid” and generally behaving obnoxiously – and in all seriousness, I have a hard enough time keeping my kids under control without exposing them to those kinds of influences and role models.  So the rule is, Mom sets the channel, and you don’t change it without permission.  Annabelle never, ever, ever sticks to this rule.  The moment I walk out of the room, she’s got the remote in her hand, channel-surfing, looking for some obnoxious show featuring smart-ass teenagers.  It happened this morning.  Within thirty seconds of my turning the TV on to Nick Jr. – really for Finn – Annabelle is changing the channel.  “Leave the TV alone, Annabelle,” I said.  I left the room.  A few minutes later, on my way to the kitchen, I saw her there, remote in hand, channel surfing again.  And I lost it.

Screaming and yelling ensued.  Swearing.  “I’VE TOLD YOU A THOUSAND TIMES TO LEAVE THE TV ALONE!!” I shouted.  “GO TO YOUR ROOM!  GO SIT IN YOUR ROOM UNTIL IT’S TIME TO LEAVE FOR SCHOOL.  NOW!!!”  She just stood there staring at me, not moving a muscle.  “GO!!”  I yelled.  All the kids froze in their tracks while I chased – literally chased – Annabelle into her room.  She beat me by a half a second and locked the door against me.  Locked the door!  “I’m going to kill her!”  I muttered.  “MOM!  Are you really going to kill Annabelle?  Did you really just say that?!”  Daisy shrieked.  “OPEN THIS GODDAMN DOOR!”  I yelled.  Annabelle unlocked the door.  “Don’t you ever lock the door against me again!  Do you hear me?!” I yelled at her.

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Michael’s trying to calm me.  “Leave me alone!”  I yelled at him.  “I do EVERYTHING for you people – including YOU! – and you all treat me like shit!  Every last one of you!”

I know.  All this over an eight-year old changing the channel on the TV.  But really, of course it’s not just about that.  That was just the straw that broke the camel’s back this morning.  It was my eight-year old changing the channel after I told her not to – again.  It was dealing with Finn tantruming his way through breakfast – again.  It was Joey throwing a dramatic tantrum and copping a major attitude last night when I said no, he could not have an Instagram account (he’s ten, for crying out loud!).  It’s the bickering and tattling all the time.  It’s the “I want, I want, I want” all the time, and the lack of willingness to do much of anything I ask.  Ask somebody to set the table for dinner?  Tell them to clean up their room?  Oh myGOD!  You would think I’m asking them to pull their own fingernails out!  It’s my husband being gone so much of the time and me feeling utterly alone, like I’m dealing with all of this single handedly.

Motherhood The Big Fat Fuck You - via Scary Mommy

I’m not excusing my losing it this morning.  I’m ashamed.  I wish I held it together better, I really, really do.  And lest I start to sound like my own mother who seemed to believe that her kids were responsible for her happiness/unhappiness but she, the adult, was not responsible for theirs, let me just say that I know kids are kids, they don’t actually mean anything personal by their behavior – I know that, I really do.

Sometimes motherhood just feels like a big, fat Fuck You, though.  This is why people say that motherhood is a hard job.  Not because it’s especially intellectually challenging or physically demanding – I mean it is those things, but there are certainly other pursuits that require for far more intellectual and/or physical output than motherhood.  Not because it requires a great deal of bravery – of course, it does call for that, too, but certainly not as much as being a soldier or a police officer, for instance.  No, it’s not those things.  It’s because it’s so fucking emotionally taxing.  It’s because it’s so incredibly thankless so much of the time.  It’s because I feel like I’ve sacrificed so much of myself for them, and they don’t appreciate it.  It’s because I do and do and do for them, constantly, and it often seems like all I get in return is complaining that it’s not enough – or just outright ignored.  I’m not looking for accolades or awards or fanfare.  I’m not even looking for “thank you.”  It would just be nice to get a little cooperation.  A little respect for the rules – rules which aren’t onerous or unreasonable for crap’s sake!

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And, you know, it’s hard to admit these things.  Everyone wants to talk about how great motherhood is, how fulfilling it is.  Sometimes it is.  And often, it’s not.  I’m not even sure why I’m writing about it this morning – opening myself up to criticism and judgment, exposing the flaws in the pretty picture.  I don’t want to feel alone, I guess.

After I got back from dropping the kids off at school this morning, I discovered that Annabelle had left her lunch at home.  Who do you think packed the baby and Finn back into the truck to drive her lunch to school?

Because that’s what moms do.

Related post: To the Unwashed Masses of Mothers

Comments

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  1. KShaw says

    Uh, yep. This, a thousand times, this. I had a meltdown in the car on the way to drop off the kids at school in which I basically said everything that you did. I lost it in such an epic way, I think I may have finally scared my 10yo son into listening. At least for today.
    Being a mom can suck, so hard. Thank you for making me feel like I am not totally alone.

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    • Adriane says

      what you said. Yes. A Million Times Yes. Today, last night, and most likely tomorrow. Is it worth it? Yes. Would I trade it? No. But does it feel like a job where everyone plots to constantly THWART me and my very very very best intentions. YES. My god, I’m exhausted.

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      • SUsan says

        I am in total agreement and have had that exact meltdown. Am I proud of it? NO. Was it necessary? YES I would and will do it again I am sure. I am the mom and someone has to keep the family rolling along down the tracks…..Good for you for being honest…..

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        • Jenn Borjeson says

          Dear Saddened -I think a big, fat f*** to you is in order, too. I actually burst into tears reading this article because I could relate. I remember all too well feeling this way when my kids were small. And I had breakdowns and I was ashamed at the time but do you know what? My kids are grown now and they are freaking awesome and they love me and I don’t feel a bit guilty. I’m human, for crying out loud. Sending a big hug to the author of this article and all of you who can relate
          Peace. xo

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        • Dana G says

          I am a social worker and I deal with the children’s unit in my county. Is this the best expression of “proper” parenting? No. Is it reality for many women? Yes. We are only human and to expect perfection is very unrealistic. If you have never lost it even once with you child(ren) then kudos to you as you are the exception. The important things are that a.) mommy is real and has emotions that need to be let out occasionally, b.) it is just that – occasionally, not on a daily or weekly basis. and c.) how things are dealt with afterwards. Mommy explains to the children that although the way she handled it was less that perfect, the reality is that you as children need to learn that behaviors such as persistently not listening or not following the rules hurts Mommy’s feelings and Mommy asks for their forgiveness. Then there is a discussion about how to proceed from here.

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          • Dana G says

            And to further comment, I am also a parent and know all too well the feelings spoken of in the article. Motherhood is a 99% thankless job. Hardest job – yes! Best job – most of the time, yes. Most rewarding job – HE## YES! It’s not the verbal thanks that gets me, it’s the little things like “My whole class agrees that you make the BEST cookies.” Or “You’re the best mommy I have!”

            On my 25th birthday, I sent my mom a bouquet of flowers and said “Thank you for not selling me to the zoo. I get it now! Thank you for everything.” Mom said it was the first time she ever felt like I really was thankful for all the crap she put up with when I was a kid (and I was actually a pretty good kid compared to some of my friends.) I’m just saying that we need to find the appreciation in the little things because the big thank you may never come and be honest with ourselves and at least one other person that we are human and broken.

            I applaud the writer and every other mother who has come forward and said she has been there and understands.

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        • Kathy says

          Haha Tracy, loved your post, so Right On!! Congratulations to all the Mothers willing to vent and share their experiences. It helps others feel they are not alone and the daily life with children can be a challenge. I wish this was available when I was raising my son, being able to share with others the difficulties and frustrations. My child was HELL on wheels! Spent years in therapy, both him and myself. In conclusion we survived, and he is now very, very successful. Lesson learned was, kids March to their own drummer, they are born with very different personalities, some easy, some difficult. I experienced many a day as the author has, felt terrible afterwards. So, “Saddened”, sounds as if you have EASY. Lucky you! However, how dare you criticize any of these mothers with your goody two shoes CRAP!!! I remember Mothers like you, made me I’ll. “My child would never do that”, or “It’s not my child”. And I’ve also have seen how some of these kids have grown up. Good luck.

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        • kylie says

          Wow saddened. You make me sad.

          As an outsider, with no children I’m sure I’m risking complete and utter ridicule by putting forward my comments but I am a daughter and have a mother so guess I still have some right to this discussion

          In the 80s before there was an internet to provide a forum to guilt parents into over analysing their behaviour, these were considered normal and at times ‘necessary’ behaviours. Necessary to maintain sanity, necessary for disciplinary reasons and probably sometimes necessary just to make a point.

          My parents had NORMAL reactions to my behaviours as a child and I grew up perfectly fine, mostly unscathed and now have a job analysing other peoples behaviours (I cant be that mentally and emotionally
          Unbalanced then, right?).

          The problem is that by censoring normal reactions and ‘protecting’ our children from perfectly reasonable reactions to their behaviour They don’t actually get prepared for the real world and we end up with a bunch of gen Ys with zero resilience or ability to cope with the real world.

          This is not only normal, its also OK.

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        • raven says

          to this saddened person who is downing on this mother of SEVEN children. you need to get over your self-rightousness. you obvious shit rainbows or something to not understand who children can and WILL drive you bat shit crazy. and you also obviously canNOT read, because before posting this even i saw the advisement that this is a supportive community. doesnt look like your comment is necessarily supportive.

          to the mom who wrote this….i give you MAJOR kudos and a standing applause. i feel this way most days. i suffer from bipolar disorder and my children drive me nuts some days…esp when they watch the same shit i have told them time and time again not to watch because of content. i also have problems with them cleaning their room. and like you all i want from them and my husband is a little acknowledgement. just a thanks for doing this would be nice.

          KUDOS!!!!!

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        • Sarah says

          Saddened, wow! You are the epitomy of the society we have become. Hiding behind your computer and making mothers who would sacrifice their very last breath for their children, feel like a piece of shit, because they are brave enough to admit that they behaved poorly. In a moment where they know what all the “experts” say they “should” do, and “could” do. Mothers who are realistic enough to know that there is a possibility that this could happen again, and say it, because they believe in honesty and transparency. Because they don’t believe in hiding emotions from their children.

          Abuse? Do you even really know what true child abuse is? Emotionally and physically? Not this bs stuff they feed us now. Not the stuff that may hurt poor Johnny’s feelings for a day, but the stuff that really haunts you for life? Clearly you don’t know the difference and are working from blurred lines. You are coming across as self righteous and judgy. One could easily assume that you are coming from a place of transference and need to feel better about yourself by beating someone else down, because there are several parenting faux pas that you yourself are guilty of and ashamed to admit.

          Yes, sometimes these reactions are necessary. It grabs their attention, they have no doubt you mean business. If my child runs out into the road you bet your bottom dollar they are going to get a smack on their bottom. Better that then getting hit by a car and not getting back up again. Neither this mommy’s reaction, nor mine will scar my child for life.

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          • Tammie FOley says

            Oh get off the cross already. Being a mom isn’t up there with martyrdom, no more than being a lawyer or a doctor or a lunch lady or a social worker.

            This woman sounds like she wants a freaking medal for being absolutely average.

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          • Chris says

            Yes! My thoughts exactly! Too many people complain and want sympathy for being a parent. I have a crazy eight year old kid, but I manage just fine without “losing it” and swearing and screaming… Yeesh!

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        • cherri mcgill says

          Why does there always have to be one like you in the crowd? Do not make this woman feel as though she isn’t a good mom b/c she lost her temper with her kids! did you not ever lose your temper with your children or are you the mother that lets your kids get away with murder b/c you don’t want to emotionally scar them for yelling at them and making them behave!!! give me a break….kids need discipline that is what is wrong with kids today they don’t have any…they are not made to mind and have little disregard for adults and rules….I support this woman and her temper 100%…..so she lost her temper big damn deal!!!! I bet she is a great mom just like so many other great moms who have lost their temper TODAY!!!!!

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        • cbeloin says

          This sounds terrifying to me. Why is yelling not allowed in your house? It’s an honest ‘end of my limit’ emotion. What do you when you reach your limit? Repression is much worse than letting it out. Our children should know that we need to control ourselves as much as possible but if you are at the end of the rope why would you not yell? People are emotional & hormonal – it is natural. Of course you don’t want to yell at your boss or start crying in the middle of English class but they need to know that we have limits like they do & repression is awful. I applaud her loosing it (on occasion) as a reminder that we may be moms but we are still human & how dare you walk all over the rules of our home. Also, they are children who watch us as role models so you NEED to loose it so you can apologize & be a role model because that is what real people do – admit when they are wrong or have gone to far. Please, don’t raise your children as machinery, they are people who need honesty not tools.

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    • Amanda says

      Hallelujah someone finally said how most of the time parenting sucks ass! I have 5 boys and they drive me bat shit crazy but they are and always will be the greatest thing about my life. Good luck to all the mamas out there Cuz you’re going to need it!

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        • Heather says

          I absolutely would be in hospital with more than my 2 boys. God be with you Amanda is right! I love that everyone is being honest… cuz come on… so many blogs out there make me feel utterly incompetent as a mother of 2 for loosing my temper.

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        • lorraine says

          i wanna say to the lady i would give anything to have all boys….girls are picky moody bossy snotty demanding laszy i have one boy 2 girls and am so greatful i found this site i felt so alone and like a bitch for so long u can only ask nicely for so long before u lose ur mind a spaz sometimes i even pout have a fit lay on the floor and scream to show them thats how they r and how stupid it looks….
          i love my children and wouldnt give them up for anything i just wish they would listen the first time the dont even listen when i spaz my oldes girl even laughs at me then gets mad runs to her room and slams her door lol it did feel good to remover her door tho lol

          anyway i am thankful to u ladys and knowing im not crazy and tont need to go to a mental hospital cuz the thought is there…

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          • jewelsoftime says

            Lorraine, Sounds like Naomi is the one being judgmental. Hang in there! I raised three girls who are now 39, 34, and 21. Had their share of ups and downs but they all turned out great and are my best friends. It does get better.

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          • ltracey says

            My Mother is a Saint!!! She raised 12 girls and 3 boys !!! YES 15 children !! I don’t ever remember her “losing it” but she did have a mean wooden spoon!!!

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          • Dawn says

            I have a 13 and 10 year old and let me tell you how much i love the hormones LOL NOT!! I think if we can just get through the teenage years and see what amazing girls we have produced will be well worth the fights and losing of our shit to get us though. My girls are much better than I was at their ages sooo… I think I must of did something kind of right anyways. Thank you for letting me know that i am not alone and my kids are generally normal hahahaha. Waiting patiently for adult years.

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          • Jamie says

            Wow Lorraine! I totally agree with everything in the post. Motherhood is hard and you feel like you’re losing your mind but that is pretty harsh to single out your girls & call them names.

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          • Sam says

            I have 3 girls..18mnths..3yrs…and 4yrs.. and bless his heart a 9yr old son.. I also have a piece of shit husband of 13yrs that I go to bed every night prayin gets hit by a fuckin truck and drug down the road miles b4 dyin.. hum sorry abt that.. in a nutshell im a single mom of 4.. so I know all abt snappin.. me and my kids battle abt how mean I am at times.. I have to remind them the reason I am yelling in the 1st place is cuz they didn’t listen.. you know I would have never made a single outburst to my mom.. or called her out of her name.. at least not to her face that is.. or guess what..smack.. right in the mouth..im not sayin beat them but maybe if we did a lil more like my mom did me growin up.. thennn maybe we might get a lil more respect.. JUST SAYIN>>LOL

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        • TiffanyC630 says

          Wow I can relate to you….. while I don’t have 5 boys I do have 3 boys. Boy do they drive me up the wall. I feel like if their was a girl thrown in there it would maybe just maybe balance out all the farting, peeing on toilet seats, burping contest, wrestling matches, etc….Probably not but it is wishful thinking lol. Anyway awesome Job on this article. It’s about time we had an article written about parenthood with no filters. If any mother finds this offensive Please tell me your secret to a pleasant parenting.

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          • Selena says

            unfortunately, sometimes the girl just joins in the burping, farting, etc ;) WE have a blended family of 7. 4 boys, 3 girls. The boys whine and cry, the girls burp and fart… the girls cry and get frumpy, the boys get attitudey… its all a matter of same shit, different kid ;) My boys are wonderful, my girls are fantastic. And sometimes I just want a massage, a nap, and a vacation, for 1 ;)

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          • Jamie says

            Yes Selena! I don’t understand this singling out of girls as being less desirable to raise than boys. No wonder it’s harder for women to make their way in this world. The discrimination is starting at home. Each child is an individual. What is with this classification….boys are easy, girls are bitches….for real??????

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          • Sam says

            And you are so right they dnt appreciate the things we do.. they only expect more.. its like im a maid instead of a mother .. I really thought it was suppose to be sunshine and rainbows.. no one tells you the truth abt it.. especially those damn magazines.. do you know its been roughly 4 yrs since ive had a shower by myself or got to go to the bathroom by myself.. unless I run and lock the door then good god who can concentrate for the screamin to get in and beatin on the door.. my husband has abused me for abt as many yrs(13)as we have been married.. so my kids (mainly son) tried tht one.. rude awakenin for his lil ass.. ive been tryin to divorce him for abt 5 yrs now.. maybe a lil longger.. hes always comin and goin and when he is around he will say things like you need to make your kids mind(MY KIDS).. really wtf.. I mean he was there too.. But point bein you know what.. its okay for us mothers to have episodes too.. why shouldn’t we.. and I agree.. yeah girls are lil bitches..i dnt think girls were bein “singled” out.. hell a woman has it made in the world.. its called the power of pussy.. true story..lmao.. especially in groups lil girls are almost unbearable.. house full of boys aint got shit on my girls.. my 4 yr old girl is tougher than any boy you’ve ever seem in your life and tinsy for her age.. and causes more fights in our house than you can image.. fuck the books.. scream and cuss if you need cuz ive found the whole bein calm and nice .. well sometime just don’t help JACK SHIT!!

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        • Cherilynn says

          I only have 2 also, Angie and I too would be committed if I had another – boy or girl!

          Don’t beat yourself up too much, please. It is completely understandable to lose your mind once in a while

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        • Wendy says

          I have 2, raised 11 more boys at various times. Other peoples kids. Why? Because they couldn’t fucking handle it. Parenting sucks, a lot. But someone has to be the glue. Good for my you for not holding back how you feel. I have been there and will again, I’m sure. Being a mom is the most thankless job a person can have. Keep your chin up. Enjoy the hell out of them. Secretly have a calendar that keeps track of each kids Senior graduation and college start dates. Do what you have to so you can get through each day.

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        • Niko says

          Angie, I was going to say the same thing! I have 2 boys and I don’t know how I haven’t been institutionalized yet…I love them more than anything but at the same time they make me absolutely insane! I don’t know how anyone can deal with more than 2…God Bless! Lately, I feel like all I do is yell at them because all they do is fight! It’s total chaos! But hey, who said it was gonna be easy lol

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          • Jamie says

            I’d rather have 5 boys than 2 girls. Mary mother of hormones!!! I. Can’t. Deal. With. Their. Drama!

            2 boys and 1 girl here and even then, I’m conceding that my rapid hair loss is to avoid the gray coming in so quickly. I don’t have to pull my hair out….the shit falls out on it’s own from my head trying not to self combust. Hang in there, Ladies!

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          • Shelia says

            I have three girls and one boy, girls ages (almost 13, 9 and almost 1) and my boy age (almost 15). I agree the hormones of my girls are enough to make me pull my hair out (YES I have literally pulled my own hair out). LOVE my kids to death and would do anything for them, but OMG! I can’t even go to the bathroom without someone being right at the door trying to get in needing something (or just to do it for the sake of it I think). My son and I have already had it out a few times because of his male hormones if you know what I mean. LOVE LOVE LOVE them but drive me MAD!!! Sleep, shower, and a warm meal these are thing foreign to me…as I am sure they are to most moms out there, lol!!! To all moms our there no matter the number of children you have you are in my thoughts and prayers!!!

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        • Pamela says

          I have three boys as well and just barely make it through a day it seems. How in the world do you make it through a day with 5 boys. Amazing is all I got to say about it. I feel the same way and have had a fair share of melt downs already as well. I think they are bound to happen. It is how we handle them after that counts. There is no such thing as perfect parenting. Those that write blogs making it out that there is are just trying to feel better about not being perfect.

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      • Shawn says

        Amen and pass the tequila. I gave birth to 3 boys, fostered 4 more. The fact that the last one is 16 and has survived this long is a testament to the fact that the others drove me over the bend and I just don’t have the energy, emotional or physical, to take him out. Don’t get me wrong, I’d do it all again, every freaking step, I just don’t know why…. I am completely convinced that I passed crazy 2 decades ago and I am coming around the bend for a second trip.

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    • Laurie says

      Yup. Been there, done that. I threw my son’s books on the floor and screamed at him because I didn’t think he was putting enough effort into his homework. Yelled that I was paying for him to go to private school and he would put in some effort or I would pull him out. Then I walked away and both of us were crying. About 5 yrs later after yelling at him I apologized and he told me, “That’s okay mom, when you yell I just tune you out, you don’t need to apologize.” He was about 12. I have rarely yelled since. He will graduate from UCLA next year and then on to law school. And he still loves his mom. So don’t worry. It’s perfectly normal. We all feel such pressure to be perfect and we’re not, we’re human. I told my son once recently that despite telling him as a kid that I had to take a class in being a mom and I had a “Mom Degree” I really just made it up as I went along and hopefully stayed a step ahead of him but that he taught me more about being a parent than he realized. Despite it all, it is the best job I have ever had in my life and I would do it all over again if given the chance. I was a single parent and my parents were both gone so I was alone. It was hard and sometimes I thought I was doing it all wrong but he turned out alright so all is good.

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      • Valerie says

        Laurie, I think any mom being honest has been here. My two are 13 and 18. The 18 year old is beginning to get it. The 13 year old I just want to choke sometimes! What ever I do is never enough! What ever I buy him is not enough. He always wants more and can say things in a way that is just condescending and dripping sarcasm! He sounds like those snotty teens on TV! Thank you Lisa for writing this! You are not alone!

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        • Ferrari Mom says

          Valerie, I have been where u are at! I am a mom of 5. I went through that for a little while with my oldest and finally decided enough is enough. Now I buy Walmart clothes, shoes, ect. I tell my kids if they want something other than what I am choosing/able to buy then they had better save up half the money on their own and I will match the other half. My 13 year old just purchased a brand new cell phone with $$ she saved from babysitting neighborhood kids and my 12 year old mowed lawns all summer to buy a kindle. Instead of the snotty entitled attitude they are seeing how hard it really is and showing WAY more respect and gratitude. Give it a try and you will be shocked at how well it works. :)

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      • steph says

        Oh my goodness! You have just described my entire week. I told (ok, screamed) my son Friday that I am not “paying” for him to fail out of sixth grade. One week in and he failed his summer reading test and did not turn in a paper we worked on together for 2 hours (and it was torture to just keep my cool the). He absolutely loves his school but I’m not breaking my back to send him there. He just turns to me and shrugs his shoulders – which makes me even more upset.
        I felt so bad all day I went to see him at lunch (I work at the school) and he looked at me like I had a third eye.

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    • robin says

      Omg I am there with you! Tell me, have you driven to the school and pulled your kids out of class to see if there are ok because heaven forbid you ruin their whole day because of your screaming at them only to look you in the eye and say “ya mom, I’m fine. Why you here?” ugh…

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      • Diane says

        hahaha, i thought this was only me. I’ve totally lost my schmidt on the drive to school and then got home and felt guilty as hell, imagining the SORROW my son must be trying to suppress while in class, only to have him call me (in response to my guilt-driven message to the office for him to call) and have him cheerfully say ‘what’s up?’ and be all “yeah, okay, whatever” about my apology.

        and then I almost get totally pissed off again because I totally shrieked horrid things at you, WHY AREN’T YOU TRAUMATIZED?!?!

        ::sigh::

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      • Lindy says

        Yes! I have done this! I’m sure that once my kid knows the meaning of bipolar he will say “Oh, THAT is why my mom screamed and ranted like a crazy person in the car and then pulled me out of class to hug me and tell me she loves me.” There is nothing like proving to your kids that you are a stark-raving lunatic.

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    • jennifer D says

      I understand what you’re going through 100%. I am a single mother of 5 children, 5 yr 7 yr, 18yr, 21yr, 23yr. not one of them helps me around the house yes they do have chores and I gotta sit there and pull teeth to get them to do those but whenever I need help with anything they’re always too busy doing this doing that the little ones complain like crazy. my two little ones of fighting all the time hitting, yelling and throwing stuff it’s insane. Motherhood is exhausting.

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      • Kathleen says

        Ladies, now you know why God gave you the job instead of the man. You are designed for the job, even the times you lose it. My kids would probably be dead if their Dad had raised them.

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        • Maria says

          I wish I could say this was true, but it is the exact opposite in our family. My husband is generally the more patient one. Although the tables are starting to turn now that our daughter’s becoming a teenager and he doesn’t understand why she spends so much time in the bathroom looking at herself in the mirror. I don’t believe as a mother I have been “given a job”. In other cultures, men and women share this more equally in the US. In Scandinavia, for example, where I live, it is very common for women and men to share in child-rearing and men take time off work when the kids are young to stay at home when women go back to work. As a result, you hear both men and women complaining about having days like this. I think it is a parenting issue, not a motherhood issue, but the way it is described in this article is something that most of us who have parented can recognize.

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        • Emily says

          My husband is a kind, patient, loving man. He’s helping me raise what I hope to be two kind, patient loving men. He can do this as well as I can. Sure, they’d grow up eating boxed mac n cheese and canned vegetables, but so did he, and he loved to tell about it.

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        • cippi says

          Your post (and this blog in general) seems to be discriminating against fathers. This doesn’t just happen to women. I am a divorced father of two girls. They try my patience every day but the joys far outweigh the grief. And my ex and I speak about issues and I can promise you that she struggles with lack of patience more than I do. This should be a “parenthood” blog post, not just a motherhood one. I am sure there are many men who go through similar experiences.

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          • Dawn says

            That is seriously a lame comment. This is a friggan blog.. it CAN be all of those things. Who are you to tell someone else what to write about? Sounds like daddy needs a nap.

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          • Amber says

            Perhaps you should look for a scarydaddy website if you’re not interested in articles geared towards moms. Its a blog, they can write about whatever they want to!

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          • Jamie says

            I think she was talking about her own experience. I didn’t feel there was anything derogatory against men. You spoke negatively about your girls mother. She was telling her own story. if you don’t like it then don’t read it. Simple as that.

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          • Jamie says

            By the way…..did you happen to read the two comments above yours? Sounded like they were singing the praises of their men. I agree with Dawn……LAME COMMENT

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          • reader says

            I believe that parents, male, female, or else, are able to learn how to raise children.
            However, you may have failed to notice that in most cases, the most unrewarding chores are taken care of, most of the time, by the mothers. That in most families, the primary caregiver is the mother. That a father is getting much more praise than a mother for doing what is simply parenting, but is not painted as work for mothers because it’s described as natural to the latter. That most often the man is seen as “helping” while the woman is seen as the one in charge, not only of the children but of the huge load of mundane chores that come with them. That there is an opposition between the social image of a SAHD, seen as a free and enlightened mind, open to innovation and brave, and that of a SAHM.
            The whole society is discriminating against mothers.

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          • Paula Byrne says

            I don’t think the aim was to discriminate against fathers, I believe she was given an account of her morning as a Mother . I have not doubt your thoughts and experience would be welcome as a father , stay at home or working.

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    • heartbroken mom says

      Heartbroken because I have tried everything parenting classes, books, seminars, therapy nothing has worked…endless talking to the kids, rewarding them for good behavior, date nights, rule charts,family meetings to hear the kids side doesn’t matter….I have had my share of breakdowns and I’m not going to feel bad about it! My daughter is 18 and my son is 16 and thank god I have no more kids.I want to get something straight I Love them so much but I couldn’t do it again…from the moment I brought my beautiful daughter home from the hospital , she has been the biggest challenge in my life from crying all night as a baby for no reason…to temper tantrums to food sensitivity having to go to occupational therapy…toilet training her telling me no panties with her finger pointed at me…to her tearing her clothes off and ripping the cute ribbons I had so lovingly placed in her hair…to the pooping at the side of my house …to the numerous school meeting k-12 grade switching school due to boyfriends that wouldn’t go away , which that also applies to my son his girlfriend that I didn’t allow at 14 yrs of age sending him sexy inappropriate pics (no cell phones for both my kids) daughter gave me a 500 dollar phone bill even after all the rules were discuss ed ….but they hated me for months and they couldn’t understand why I took their phones away. My son is easier but also has yelled …broken things because I would regulate his time on video games, I had explained in many ways (lovingly, firmly, and in not so nice ways) that he was getting migraines because he was not following the time limits I had set, so finally I sold it on ebay…once again I was hated …I had a dream of what parenting was going to be like , and I thought I was prepared…I was a pediatric nurse for 5 yrs when I had my oldest and I had read books, and I figured with all the experience I had a working with teens and small children I would be fine Well it was a rude awakening ….oh boy no one prepared me for this job….wow but on a positive not it could be worse my kids could be dead or on drugs, or in jail, and I really feel for those parents that have had to go through that but I really love my kids and I hope I will one day have an awesome relationship with them…but I don’t judge mom’s who have lost it …because I know how much I love my kids and I am the first to admit I have lost it many times…so to all the moms that aren’t perfect and have tried everything and have found themselves crying in a corner after yelling and saying things you wouldn’t say to your enemy you are not alone….I think meltdowns are part of parenting♡

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    • Lara says

      Oh so relieved I’m not the only one who “loses it.” It can make you feel like such a failure and so incapable and even downright crazy. It can wash away all the good days in just one brief moment. Parenting is so challenging and difficult – full of great moments and memories, but full of days you wish you could forget or do over.

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    • Nik says

      I’ve got 3 boys, 2 with autism Its bad enough in everyday life to have to cope with the stares of strangers when my boys act up or when I ‘lose it’ a bit. Then I get to go to support groups and meet people like Angie and feel really crap about myself.

      Everybody walks a different road, everybody has different resources, internally and externally, different levels of support and guess what;

      You. Don’t. Get. To. Judge.

      You’d come across as a far nicer person, if you offered support to a struggling mum having a bad day than casting judgement. And you’d actually help a mum’s breaking point go just a little higher.

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      • Kristine says

        Well said Nik. It saddens me to read all of the attacking. Every child & situation are different and everyone reacts differently to each situation. Yes, I am a SAHM with 4 young children & have lost it (a lot) with my children. That doesn’t make it right or wrong, it makes me human. You need to do what you feel is best for you and your family. And I love Nik’s last thought about offering support to help increase a “mum’s” breaking point. It sure has helped me in certain situations.

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      • says

        Perfect response Nik. Though I am sad to read that people stare at you or your kids. I’ve met so many wonderful kids who have autism…. I think people who stare at autistic persons are just not blessed to have really spent time with them. It’s so amazing the different things they excel at. Don’t let anyone’s stares make you feel some type of way. To hell with them. People stare at my kids when they talk loudly, or are arguing, or doing just…kid stuff. I commend you for being a great mom and being able to hold it together like you do. Those people staring aren’t going home with you. They can’t do what you do. Let them stare! Let them talk!!! They can’t take your birthday! ;] You’re so fortunate to have the love of three amazing children. Don’t let ANYONE mar that for you in the least.

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      • kim says

        Nik,
        I’m sure you know by now that there are some really mean people in this world. I hope you feel great about yourself most of the time. Autism sucks and thankfully, you seem to be able to handle it. No matter who our children are, giving them a life surrounded with love and support makes them better able to handle the world. And, I do not believe any parent who denies occasional, regretful behavior. Whether it is yelling, cursing, be impatient, too strict, too lenient, whatever…we all could behave better than we do, sometimes. However, I do not think disciplining your children in public counts as bad behavior. Different kids need different tactics and strangers have no idea where you’ve been or what you’re dealing with. Keep being mom to those kids and get a break when you can. You’re a hero.

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    • ashley says

      My son is only 2 and i already feel this way sometimes. I can’t even imagine what it’s going to be like when he starts school and gets even more defiant than he already is.

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      • Melissa says

        Awww…reading your comment broke my heart, for you I mean, you sound like one incredible mother who just gives, gives and gives some more!! When your children grow into awesome adults (they will), they will look back at everything u did for them and when they themselves have kids it’s pay back baby!!! hahahah

        I have an almost 3 yr old boy who already talks like he’s 15 I swear. I’m not sure where he learns some of the things he says because we do not speak like that in our house, truly, we do not. He has said under his breath, “I’m going to slap u in the face” to which I reply “excuse me, what did u say?” …and then he said “nothing mommy!” is the sweetest voice. I’m scared for him to grow up any more!!

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    • Dana Esau says

      Kids are more resilient than that. A parent losing it once in awhile will not cause the children to pick abusive boy/girlfriends, or scream at others all the time because it happened at home once or twice, Yelling doesn’t work; I’ve done it and seen for myself how ineffective it is. Being firm and steady with discipline is the ideal setting, but moms are human. They get tired and frazzled and do the wrong thing. But this mom said she is BY HERSELF most of the time. Maybe Dad is gone by necessity for work, but the fact is that he is still gone and Mom is alone and outnumbered.

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    • Lisa says

      OMG!! Thank you for not making me feel like a crazy, psychotic bitch! I feel like this about 99% of the time with my daughter and my husband. And you hit the nail right on the head–it’s not like you’re asking for an award for being super mommy or asking for a maid! All you’re asking for is to be acknowledged when you speak and a little cooperation! Is that so much to ask? I think not!

      And sometimes the “punishment” for their not listening is more of a punishment for you than it is for them! She won’t stop flipping the channels. What’s the punishment? Take away TV? Do that, and you’re the one who is going to be miserable! ;-)

      Thanks for the affirmation!

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    • Kim says

      Thank you for being the brave one to post this. I have said this for years that we truly love our kids, wanted our kids and could not imagine our life without them. But there are days when we wonder why and just don’t like them. (same thing is true for the husbands). I had the melt down day this morning getting ready for what is suppose to be a fun vacation???? Alone with my 16 year old and his friend – husband has to work. Does not seem like fun to me right now. So…I postponed it for one day and sent my son and his friend away for some quiet time.

      Again, thank you for posting and letting us all vent.

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      • Leigh Anne Gavinelli says

        Both of my girls are now in college. One thing that helped me is to take a long walk with my child(ren) after school. When they first get off the bus and I asked “how was your day? or what did you do today? I’d get “nothing”. So after a snack we went for the walk, about half way through, I’d get a lot more info/conversation and exercise just helps w/relaxation for everyone. Also sunlight helps “moods”. I’m not particularly religious, but believe faith is so important for kids. Having a “visual” image of goodness is important. I’ve read that when asked to draw an image of God, most kids across the planet draw a similar image. An “old man with a white beard”. Google it. I encourage (and still do) praying and reading Proverbs (the common sense part of the bible). Our public education can’t include these things – you can’t use the word Christmas, Easter, etc. which is not only reverse discrimination, but a loss of language, moral guidance, and a huge loss of optimism for children. Religion done right is just the idea of love and loving each other. With that lost the opposite is learned and kids will test us until we get it right. It can’t hurt to have some faith, but its depressing not to have any faith or optimism. Kids have to see that in their parents so they can relax. Also, its a great excuse to not watch TV shows that are condescending, sexually based, etc, as they aren’t good for a child’s mental health. Mom’s need “religion” more than they realize. Just my thoughts..”Older Mommy”

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        • Paula Parmelee says

          Thanks for your post. I understand as I have raised 6 children. There are many moments I wish I could take back and undo. I do agree with Leigh Anne’s
          comments about instilling faith and morals into our children. One important way to do this is to model the behavior you want them to exhibit to you. My suggestion is to remove the causes of the stress. Much like Leigh Anne who took her children for a walk after school. Do something different than the status quo. Turn off the T.V. In the mornings and any other time it starts causing friction. When you start feeling yourself ready to blow or loose it, take a break from that and change your behavior, count to 10 before you reply to obnoxiousness or rudeness from your children. Have your children write sentences addressing their misconduct. Let them know with calmness your expectations for behavior and when they don’t meet that expectation follow through with a consequence and each and every time they break the rule they get the consequence and then add on additional consequences until they know you mean it and you are in control and are not going to lose it again, because you are the mom and what you say is the final word. Then get your husband on board ( actually first thing is to discuss all of this with him) and hold a family meeting. Gather everyone together when you can talk about what needs to be done to make the family operate more smoothly. Have an agenda of what you need to discuss and give each family member a chance to speak about what they need from other family members. Do this on a regular, set aside a specific time and day, basis. As a result you can plan family time when every member can inform others of upcoming events, i.e. School functions, requests for visits with friends and you will become a better functioning family and accountable to each other and also children need that sense of belonging and consistency in their lives. I really hope this helps. Let me know what you think.

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          • mary says

            Paula:
            The “idea” of the family meetings and getting the husband “on board” are extremely excellent “ideas.” I wish everyone “did” that concerning the family.

            Also, having each family member express their “views and ideas” is great too!

            Thank you for sharing your thoughts and views on this most important subject/topic !!!!

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        • Parker says

          I think quite the opposite. Religion is a private matter, and unless you want to introduce every religion into their education then religion has no place in a public classroom. There are just not enough hours in the day as there are 1000s of them. Discrimination has zero to do with this very important law. However, I am not opposed to offering class or injecting a lesson into their education which teaches the history of religion and how it has influenced the world in almost every aspect of human existence noting both negative and positive outcomes. I actually think it is an important part of our education and that we shouldn’t just ignore it because we are uncomfortable with its history and/or exposing our children to all of these religions because we are scared they might choose to have a different set of beliefs based on this education whether switching religions or ditching it altogether. It is important that children make that decision for themselves because although it is family matter, it is so personal and should not be pushed onto anyone without giving them all of the facts first. This religious conflict we have in the U.S. is just getting so old. We have a Constitution which says very clearly the intention of the writers was to completely separate church and state so that we could be a truly free country. It is in black and white and has absolutely zero grey area. It is one of the most important foundations we have, and people are misinformed from birth about this by the majority of the US Christian families are giving their children false information about our history. We were not founded upon any religion whatsoever. I think it is terrible to tell them otherwise. I felt hoodwinked when I started to ask my own questions about religion, its history, its history in relation to the foundation of the U.S., and I felt quite angry at my parents for just down right lying to me and in turn causing me to look down on others who were not the same religion. Anyway, I can appreciate a personal relationship with whatever God someone wants to identify with, but I will never be ok with recognizing any single religion in our schools as it would inevitably lead to misinformation, favoritism among the religion based on the majority of the school’s religious outlook. All the while isolating the other children. It cannot happen. My dad, my grandfather, and my great grandfather were all ministers and tried to overturn that law which I found out later in life. I was mortified, and I feel bad daily for those people who are pushed into a corner because they are not the dominant religion or because they picked the “wrong” version of whatever religion, etc. Kids have enough to worry about.

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    • Wade Mislevich says

      Being a work on the road father is no picnic however, this article absolutely hits the MOM issue perfectly!! As a Father and a husband of 3 boys, I am sooo thankful to my wife who had all too many of these days and I am ashamed to say too many days helped along by her 4th boy to raise, ME. You Mothers out there are AWESOME, just remember you only human also, so dont beat yourself up for a bad day or bad moment!! Your all special!!

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    • Catherine E. Campbell says

      My children are now grown but yep I think we have all been there at one time or other and many of more. I remember having melt downs driving girls to the different schools before heading out to work and I also was on many of the school activities and CPTA as well in the earlier years when I worked evenings and Sat. then after a full day of mom hood and baby on my hip. When in car I was having an argument with one of my daughters in the car and also had a Cpl of their fiends who have known me since they were like 4 and both had never seen me go ballistic like that and one got out a little early, lol, and later said I have never seen her that mad and the other girl who I drove to her door has been around our place since she was barely out of diapers says to her “Oh yeah, she gets pretty worked up when she gets going but she is a good head” lol. There were so many times I wondered if they had a clue how much I do for them as well as working an outside job when others resting after a full day of kids. Well now I am Grandma and guess what they think I am greatest human being going and often say they hope they can be as good a mom as I w as to them and btw the two who are moms are amazing at it and my grandkids are living proof of that and yes they have their times too and my middle one is a grade school teacher and thought of as one of the best teacher going by the kids and so loved so in essence having a melt down normal and one needs to air one thoughts out and do not worry it all comes to them eventually.

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    • Laura Jill Goodacre says

      I’m so glad that you decided to write about this, this morning. You’re right – Motherhood is completely misrepresented to society. Nothing in life is all sunshine and roses 100% of the time – including (gasp) bringing up children. We (society) need to be honest about these kind of challenges. Motherhood has turned into a competitive sport with everyone trying to outperform everyone else. It was good to read about someone else who is finding this gig hard.

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    • liz says

      Most parents do the same thing. Only they ďont have the courage to write about it. Or tell there friends. You are very good people and parents to be so honest . I have 4 children and 6 grand kids . And I am quite honest . This definitely show you the love and love makes the world go round

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    • Joe daddy says

      Society has made every parent fill like we owe our children everything in life. We r deem bad parents if yell or even touch are kids, but iI feel that we are molding are kids for the future, so I ask myself and all of you. Look at them is that what you really them to be like when there are adults. Whinny little brats or confident respectful people. Taking back our parenthood. It’s not wrong to blow.

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    • KB says

      Yes, yes, yes, thank you! I lost my shit on my 7 year old yesterday on the way home from school because he thought it would be a good idea to cut a huge chunk of hair off the front of his head 2 days before picture day. After I’d shelled out $12 for a haircut so he’d look nice for them. Needless to say, I’ll be waiting for Spring pictures.

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    • brandy says

      I swear I felt like I was reading an exact scenario that took place in my home! Mothers give so much of ourselves…..a lil appreciation sometimes besides mothers day would be heartwarming! I am now a mother of two teenage girls…..and guess what….the plot thickens! But I know in the end….it will all be worth it! Thanks for sharing!

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    • Michelle says

      AMEN! Motherhood is a love/hate relationship that pulls us in all emotional directions! We love our children and would do anything for them, but we all have our days and anyone that says that motherhood is all cupcakes and rainbows is NOT telling you the full story!

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    • Stephanie Post says

      You are stalking me aren’t you? Literally were you a fly on my wall about a week and a half ago? Because you just quoted EVERYTHING (except where you added the comment about your own mom) that I literally just ranted… okay screamed at my own kids (7yr old twins, and a 16 yr old) and husband.
      Now my DH does help me around the house sometimes, don’t get me wrong… he will do laundry, he will help make dinner too. But what I am trying to drive home to my family is that it’s not about the big things… it’s the little things. I would MUCH RATHER have my family pick up that scrap of paper laying on the floor that they keep just stepping over, than the husband put a load of laundry in the washer. If they see that the entertainment center has a layer of dust on it, take the 5 mins to just dust it for me. It’s these silly little things that are what is pushing me into being strapped into a straight jacket. Because those little things… those are the things that ADD UP throughout the day. Those little things are the stressors! What gots me even more nuts is when I triend to vent about it to some older and wiser mother thinking that maybe I could get some support and guidance, I wound up being treated like I am the ONE with the ISSUES, and that I shouldn’t be complaining because I AM a “stay at home mom”. Just because I am a stay at home mom doesn’t mean I should be disrespected so… Ummm… what’s your point? Because I can tell you one thing… if YOU went to work and YOUR COWORKERS treated you like what A LOT of mothers deal with daily in their own homes today… YOU can bet your ASS that you would complain about YOUR PAYING JOB and would probably freaking quit!! And they also don’t realize that while many from their generation were okay with Dad being at work all day long and then going and playing with the boys afterwards… a lot of THIS generation of women are NOT okay with that… because a Dad needs to be home to have a relationship with their kids and their wife!

      What it comes down to is a little word that packs a WHOLE LOT of meaning and can even CHANGE A PERSONS LIFE! The word is “RESPECT”. You wouldn’t treat your boss, coworkers, teachers, friends, and your friends parents that way, or leave your mess behind for any of them to clean up right? You also would bend over and pick up that piece of trash off the ground too. So why do you respect those people enough to not treat them, their home, and the hardwork they put in for the day that way, but you won’t do it for your mother, wife, or the woman that birthed those little spawns of satan that you helped make? And you know that most husbands (now that they are older) definitely would not treat their mothers that way either, and many will bend over backwards to make their mom’s happy now. So what gives? Whats the excuse? It’s the great mother mystery I swear. Because the mom can outright tell the family, “You gripe about me being crabby all the time, and screaming too much, here it the solution to make it stop. If you and the kids would just do (insert needs here) for me, I wouldn’t be the screaming mother and wife I am now! I would be less stressed, less tired, I would have more time to do this or that for you, I would have the energy and desire to be intimate more often.” They just don’t get that it’s hard to want to do anything with someone when you just pulled out their nasty crusty dirty socks from between the couch cushions!

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      • Rachel says

        It’s the “for me” thing that I have a problem with! If somebody dusted the entertainment center, it’s not “for me.” It’s for the household! I get almost as mad at people acting like they did a chore “for me” as I do about just having to do it all. IT’S NOT FOR ME PEOPLE! IT’S FOR THIS HOUSEHOLD! It’s for YOU. It’s for your DAD! It’s for ALL OF US!

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    • Terra says

      I’ve raised 4 children. My oldest is 36 and my youngest is 13. Yes, I will always be mothering, but by the time my son reaches independence, I will have been ACTIVELY raising kids for 41 years of my life! You are absolutely not alone in your pain. I’ve been going through this for years. I finally divorced my “5th child” and realized that he and his lack of respect for me as a woman, let alone a mother, imbedded a deep channel into my older girl’s brains. It is true, Children learn what they live. One blaring comment you made in your rant was about your own mother. Perhaps you should re-evaluate how you feel about her as a woman. Perhaps you have some pre-conceived notion that because she “expected” you to make her happy, that she was not a good mother, then look at how you are parenting. There is NOTHING wrong with a mother expecting respect and effort on the part of her husband and children to make her happy. That is called “loving yourself”! If you give love and care, in a healthy family environment it should and will be returned. If not, there is another factor you need to look at, and get to the root, NOW. … before they grow up blaming you, as you do your mom!

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    • gnrsarah says

      First, I hear you. I’ve been there. And I’m happy I’m in good company! However, I just figured out (last night, actually!) how to set the parental controls on my TV. Definitely figure that out. I set it so that everything rated TV14 and above requires a PIN. I have a nine-year-old, and she’s getting into more grown-up television, so i thought it was time. Also, both of my kids’ doors came with locks, and it was never an issue with my daughter, but my son LOVES to lock the door. So we removed them. It’s a few dollars at Home Depot to buy new doorknobs without locks–totally worth the investment. Don’t let those kids get the better of you! You’re bigger, stronger, and smarter–and you hold the keys. Start now, or adolescence is going to be a real bitch.

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    • Jennifer says

      I lost it the other day battling with my five year old over her shoes. Needless to say, that during my freak out, a pair of Sketcher’s Twinkle Toes were pitched out of the car window and into the woods. I’m not proud, but it happened. There are some days it feels like a losing battle. I love my kids more than anything and would walk to the ends of the earth for them, but sometimes a morning without a battle, a bedtime without a fight, and a simple thank you can go a long way. Any mother who doesn’t agree with you in some way isn’t doing their job right.

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      • Samantha M says

        Oh my goodness I did this the other day at the mall. I told her not to wear those pink patent leather shoes because they would hurt her feet. She ignored me and then whined and bitched on the floor at the mall about her feet. So I picked her up and I left the shoes on the trash bin and went home. She cried about them all the way home. And I didn’t care….

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      • M says

        Jennifer – your post about throwing out the shoes – I’m so sorry to laugh but I did laugh right out loud. Thank you for this. I thought I was the only one. I once pitched an mp3 player out the car window because I couldn’t handle one more millisecond of whining about it.

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    • Kaitlyn says

      Happens to me all the time! I can tell you’re a great mom or you wouldn’t care what they watched on TV! I think we as mother’s need to “freak out” every once in awhile.. so the little buggers know not to push us too far. :):)

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    • Michelle T says

      So nice to hear I’m not the only one. I have said it before, who else would we put up with this behavior from? Who would push us and push us and push us until we feel little better than animals? I understand now why parents hit their kids for so long and in the vacuum of that being gone, lots of us are really struggling. There has to be an answer, but what? I try the peaceful parenting model and my five year old likes to spit at me while I’m counting to ten and using my peaceful voice.

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    • Laura says

      The word I use is relentless. It’s not hard, physically or intellectually like you said, except that it is in lots of ways that are different from building a bridge or running a marathon, but it’s just relentless. Amen, sister, amen to everything you said.

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      • Melissa says

        Thank you for writing this article/post. I feel like this so often–you have made me feel so “not alone” in feeling like the “bad parent” for having these exact same feelings. Very brave in saying how it is–parenting isn’t all sunshine, roses, and fulfillment–it is sometimes the big FXXX You–you are exactly right. We just need to learn how to handle it better–if you figure that one out, please blog. Thanks so much again–

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      • Melissa says

        Joe, the point is it wasn’t about the show–it was just the final straw. We do so much and feel like little things should be a given from our kids. They aren’t and it is frustrating. The important thiing about this is that feeling this way is not abnormal–we just have to work on our reactions. It can absolutely knock you down as a parent–at least that is what it does to me. I overreact, feel guilty, swear to myself it won’t happen again–however, my plan isn’t always my kids’ plan–and so the circle goes. It’s all just part of the game.

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      • Shawn says

        Yes kids test the boundaries and yes it is healthy for them to do so, but kids also need the security of knowing what boundaries are there for and that those boundaries will be enforced. She was right in sending her daughter to her room, there are many things out there that younger children should not be exposed to, things that can emotionally traumatize them, desensitize them from other’s needs or values. Just because it is alright for one child does not make it alright for all. Maybe we should just let them run out into the roads without teaching them to look both ways, so what if they get hit by a car, they’ll learn then won’t they? Get a grip, kids need rules and boundaries as well as they need to learn consequences before worst comes to worst. Lucky child you were.

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    • Lcags14 says

      unconditional love is what it’s all about…but I DO require “thank you” from my daughter – if we don’t teach them to recognize and express gratefulness, who will?

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    • Cheryl says

      THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU a million times over, I love my kids, there is nothing in this world that can compare. HOLY HELL in a Prada handbag, I feel the same way, and it is beyond amazing to know I am not the only one out there. James, you cannot fathom what we moms do it is as pure and simple as that. None of us mom ( I am sure) want robots, we want our children to be just that kids, learn from your mistakes. Say Thank You and your welcome and yes explore BUT when a majority of moms are SAHM and we handle not just kids, but an entire household. Then and ONLY THEN will you, James ever even get a glimpse into what a Mom does for her family, household, children and more. Notice not what we do for ourselves.

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    • John Bielby says

      having been there and done that I have one thing I want you all to remember….at some point in your life Grandchildren will be your reward for NOT killing your kids, You will get to sugar them up, buy noisy toys. send them back and then get the pleasure of seeing your offspring twist in the wind just like you did.

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      • says

        Haha. My kids’ grandparents aren’t allowed to do that. It’s hard enough to raise kids in this day and age without my children having one set of rules here and one set of rules at the grandparents’ houses. (This would probably be different if they saw them occasionally, but they live a few minutes away and see our kids a few times a month). Because the last thing I need when my kid is asking for something I have already said ‘no’ to a dozen times is her tacking on a “But Grandma and Grandpa let me.”

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    • kris says

      Actually rules are good when you have more than one child. Not all kids are the same. And since it’s her house she can have her own rules what is allowed in that house.

      Maybe her kids the younger ones can’t handle what the bigger kid was watching? Just because they can doesn’t mean they should.

      I dont let my son have the remote or controller, because he has bought stuff before. I dont have the money to figure that out.

      And some people are better with stress than others.
      Some people just can’t anymore because they have been.

      Also Just because you didn’t “turn out bad” and “do drugs” doesn’t = what others will turn out. Also the fact you want to tell someone that she failed her daughter makes you a pretty aweful person in my mind, so maybe you didn’t get rasied as well as you thought?

      I was raised with rules. And spanking and I also turned out pretty good. Each person is different and each person needs different ways of handling.

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      • Tara says

        Absolutely agree with you, her reply sounded pretty judgmental to me but I think you responded better than I could!

        The only thing, I think rules are good for all children – regardless how many children. In the adult world there will be rules everywhere – on the road, at work, when socializing – why would home be different? A parent’s job is to prepare them for that world. And anyone who says they don’t have rules is not being honest. Brush your teeth before you go to school, take a shower before bed, clean up your place after dinner, etc. One can call them “guidelines”, but they’re rules plain and simple.

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        • Parker says

          the problem is society sets such high, unrealistic, or just plain dumb standards on how children should be raised. I feel a lot of the rules I hear about here, there and wherever are sometimes only created for selfish reasons by the parent. They want to appear to be doing everything “right” or come across as a “great” mom for her monitoring or sheltering skills. Some like the attention, and some do it to fit-in with the other “supermoms” which both can be labeled as selfish. You have to do what works for your family no matter how it might look to the outside world. It is none of their business and like I said before, causes unnecessary strain and conflict in the home when some of those things just don’t matter or have no just cause for being implemented in the first place (just a bunch of anecdotal or false reports of there success). If you strip down a lot of the things that cause problems in the family, especially with young teens, is that they are being prevented from being who they are, doing what makes them happy (obviously while still maintaining self control, self respect and respect of others), being given rules without any explanation as to why and/or being reprimanded for inquiring about the why and expecting honest answers not canned responses learned by the parent from outside influences, etc. They should be implemented if an when there is a need such as if a change in behavior with negative outcomes ensues, and the only thing that my have changed was their current interests, people they hang with, media outlets, video games, etc. If they show no signs of really harming themselves or the affecting their futures in a negative way, or conflicting with the outside world in a way that causes real issues, then what is the point of some of the crazy rules I hear from certain people (a lot of which have no reasoning whatsoever except societal or familial pressures or wanting to appear to know exactly what is best for them at all times when in fact sometimes they actually can determine some of those things themselves or need to learn on their own why certain rules are in place). You have to fail sometimes to learn, an a constant shelter isn’t going to help that in the long run. We want to protect our children, and also prevent chaos in the home because there is more than one personality that resides in the home and we all have live together, and we want to shelter them from the ugliness of the world, but it is getting out of hand in my opinion and we are sending our children out into the world with no protection or self preservation tools bc we shelter them so much, or we implement rules that in the long run just make no difference really and damage/ruin our relationships with them and send them into the world feeling jaded or untrusting none of which are good outcomes. We end up doing the opposite even though at the time they may have been well-intentioned. We have to pick our battles, and I guarantee people will see a change in their children and their relationships with them. I am not perfect, nor do I have all the answers, but I have seen this too many times and it can damage these kids long term or negatively impact their perception of reality, We have to be parents, but we also have to gain/earn their trust so they will understand why we do and say some of things we do and say without harboring resentment, isolating, or causing unnecessary disconnects and pain in the family. That women who sold her son’s x-box, I mean wow, he will never forget it, and while you might mend over time, he will always remember it and it will also stir a negative emotion inside of him whether she knows it or not. Unless that kid was really deserving of that, and it would take a lot for me to do that to my child, then I would consider that a perfect example of what not to do. I feel so bad for him. My parenting style is very different than what I have witnessed, but it seems to be working for us. My children are well-behaved, inquisitive, curious, knowledge-seeking, fun little people who I am always proud to show off to the world without any fear of tantrums or disrespect to adults, and yes, they both watch t.v, (and have their own), play video games, surf the net, etc., but they also love to read, love to learn and explore this unknown world they live in, and are not showing any signs that my decision to parent this way is harming them in anyway. They are my best friends in the world, and they still respect that I am also their mother. None of this is to say we don’t have our moments because we absolutely do, but I feel a connection with them I never felt with my parents. That is trust, openness, loyalty, respect, friendship, I could go on and on, and I am so grateful for it. They are even allowed to say one swear word a year on their birthday (it was sort of an inside joke at first, but now it is tradition), and they sometimes opt out or give their swear away to one of us which is really funny (you have to be there). Point being, they make the right decisions a lot of the time all on their own, and I feel if more people would allow their child this sort of learning freedom (again within reason) they will surprise you because they always know more than we think. I realize every child is different, every home/family is different, and so different strokes for different folks is very true. My grandfather said something that has stuck with me and that is to look at trust like a grading system. He starts me out with an A or 100, and it is up to me to keep it, but as soon as the trust is broken or the behavior inappropriate or bad, I lose that A and getting back is much harder than keeping it an A from the beginning. I try to approach my kids that way as much as possible. Anyway, that’s just my humble opinion…

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    • kristin says

      Thank you. Yes this is normal and today was a hard day for me.you’re not alone it crazy! Thank u for showing me that too even tho I still feel half crazy from the day.

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    • Kimberley Popken says

      Thank you for keeping it real. We all have those moments. I appreciate your transparency and willingness to show the ‘not so perfect’ aspects of parenting.

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    • Tania says

      I’m doing this alone after losing my husband two years ago. I hate the way I sound sometimes. I feel so alone. I have our four year old daughter who’s at the testing stage. Sometimes I’m feel desperate!! We hadn’t lived here that long when he died so I have no real friends and no family for support. Thank you for making me feel normal, well and all the replies they helped also. This is the hardest thing in the world!

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    • cynthia says

      I hear you and I can totally relate! Lately I feel like this isn’t the life that I signed up for, at all. My three kids are always demanding, from the second I wake up and they fight, scream and bicker all day. What do I do? Laundry, dishes, and constantly clean up after EVERYONE. Life really six as a stay at home mom, I’m completely poor, haven’t been out or seen or even spoken with a girlfriend in over a year. I think my husband likes the fact that I’m isolated from the outside world. I had a breakdown this morning so I took some pills and spent the day in bed. No one consoles me, not even hubby.

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      • carol says

        cynthia
        I’m right there with you
        last few days haven’t wanted to get out of bed
        I’m overwhelmed and extremely unhappy
        I feel so alone in this world
        I have 3 girls who are wearing me down day by day ad a husband that I cant talk to

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    • Lisa says

      I feel the same way on a daily basis! And all of my friends who are “perfect” moms don’t understand why I struggle so much with motherhood. I LOVE my children, but it is HARD work every day. Thank you for sharing, I don’t feel so alone anymore.

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    • Naomi says

      I know exactly how you feel. I have 6 kids, 4 girls and 2 boys. I love them to death but they drive me crazy. Everyday my 4yr old has a meltdown that consists of her screaming for at least an hour and she does it 3 to 4 times a day. My 2yr old has picked up on this behavior and tries to do it now. I’m also dealing with 2 teenagers (a girl and a boy) and their hormones. My house is always in chaos!

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    • Sarah says

      I love the raw, gritty, HONEST tone of this article. It reminded me of myself at times. Bravo Lisa for exposing what we all feel at times. And of course you drove the lunch back to school. Based on what you feel, the love you have for your kids, in spite of them giving you more “sparkle” (not gray hair, sparkle), we do our job as Mom. The end justify’s the means! Love it…want to read more. Have a beautiful Friday!

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    • Charli says

      I am almost (almost) ashamed to say that I laughed so hard at this that I nearly cried.

      My parents, all three of them (mother, father and stepmother) were physically, emotionally, and mentally abusive and generally neglectful. I was hit, shoved, thrown down stairs, left alone with no food (for three days or more) while under the age of five, and in my teen years pretty much singlehandedly raised both of my younger siblings to keep them from the same fate. Does that mean that all kids should be abused or they won’t turn out like I did? Just because I managed to be a hard-working, dedicated, educated, and caring individual in that environment doesn’t mean that my parents did a good job. It only means that somehow I managed to minimize the damage they could have done.

      So what, OP doesn’t want her 8 year old to watch a show that is clearly not appropriate for her 2 year old? That is completely within her right as a parent, and she is protecting her younger children. If she only had the 8 year old, perhaps she would feel differently about her daughter being able to choose what she watches. Or maybe not, a lot of the teen / pre-teen shows these days are much more mature than they were when I was 10, and even the ones I used to watch are too mature for some children.

      I have one daughter, a little under the age of two. I’m learning as I go, and there are things that I do that make me miserable because I don’t know if it’s the right thing. There are days I lose it because “I swear if you throw one more tantrum” or “Just go sit in your freaking time out chair because I can’t handle you right now” and those days are normal and to be expected. We are humans, we’re not robots, we can’t turn off frustration 100% of the time. And if you’re parenting you can expect to be frustrated at least about 75% of the time. ;)

      I want my daughter to grow up and make her own decisions, when it is appropriate. At the age of 8, when she has clearly been given rules and refuses to abide by them, is not an appropriate time to make her own decisions, and if she is going to make her own decisions, she’s going to learn to live with the consequences. If that means me chasing her into her room screaming at her because it’s the 7 millionth time she’s done the same thing and I’ve had it, then so be it. I just hope that if the time comes, I can be as honest as OP is about it.

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    • Molly says

      I flipped off both my kids this morning, with both hands, as they were leaving for school with my husband. I also take my child’s door off if they slam it. God forbid they should lock that shit. They may never get their door back.

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    • Jamie says

      Oh yeah, been there done that like 1000s times. The only difference is the hubby is around but basically the worst offender out of all 6 of them (five kids and him). It’s almost to the point sometimes that screaming is the only way anyone in my house get’s mom means “NOW”, not tomorrow or next week. Sigh, being the only responsible party with a full time job, full time school, five kids and a house literally falling apart around me (toilet broke, washer broke, lawnmower broke, vacuum broke, floor in the bathroom is too uneven to put a new toilet in, and the electrician who is re-wiring the house (because that broke too), saw a couple roaches (ewwwww, thanks neighbors who just tented their house next to us… guess where their critters went), and reported it to our landlord who is now expecting a couple $1000 invoice from us from an exterminator, like yesterday. Meanwhile the kids are still eating all over the damn house, so is hubby, no one is listening, and mom is on the verge of a mental collapse. Just same ol same ol over here… motherhood rocks! Or maybe sometimes, I’d just rather eat rocks.

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    • Michele Grzywacz says

      And this is exactly how mother’s do their job….over and over and over, the same thing day after day. It is only the mothers that think it is too hard, or too taxing or takes too much of their time that give up instructing, directing, teaching, repeating punishing, hugging that fail. Your child only becomes a responsible adult if you are a role model and demand that he/she follow the rules when their natural instinct is to run amok like wild animals. I see so many children whose parents have given up, or worse, make a rule and immediately let the child break it with no consequences. Those children are the misbehaved, obnoxious unlucky ones, Yours are the lucky ones!

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    • Jolie says

      Thank you for posting this. This has also happened to me and I have had these same thoughts. I actually teared up reading this, as it is good to know I’m not alone.

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    • Ree2 says

      Yes, yes thank you for saying what I’m sure every mother has felt!!! We are people to and deserve to be treated as such especially from our family. I’m sure my kids will never forget my “losing it moments”. Moms Rock

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    • alyssa says

      glad i wasnt the only one this morning .. how many times can you say “please put your shoes on” nicely and calm … i walk into the living room after brushing my teeth and still sitting on the floor w book in his hand with NO shoes on !!
      I understand exactly where you are coming from. Being a single mother.. it can be extremely testy .. i use the “mommy is going to take a time out” usually … !!!!

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    • Amber says

      Thank you for saying out loud what we as moms go thru. Being a mom is hard. We lose our shit once in a while. No one admits it though. But it’s the truth and if you don’t lose your shit once or twice- well then I guess I am a bad mom in your eyes!

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    • says

      Disclaimer: I only have one kid, and I have 50/50 split custody, so I’m kind of a cheater in the sense that I only have my little barnacle half of the time, so I get a break. It’s a tough break, because I miss her when she’s gone, but it’s still a break. I do, however get to deal with the shittiness of co-parenting my kid with another family (who, thankfully are pretty good parents) so maybe that evens the score.

      Thank you for this post.

      I freak the fuck out on a regular basis. Here’s what my (extensive) therapy has taught me. As long as it’s not abusive, losing control in front of your kids is good for them, not the opposite, as long as they see you regain control. It teaches them that it’s human to get frustrated, and watching you simmer down teaches them them the skills they need to control their own emotions. Our kids learn by emulating us; if you’re never exposed to conflict and it’s resolution, as a child, what the fuck do you do when your outside of the “perfect” parent’s bubble? You got nothing but unicorns and rainbows in your social toolkit and life will punch you in the face, hard, and then steal your unicorn and shit on your rainbow.

      Freaking out once in a while doesn’t make you a bad parent. It makes you a human being. And teaching your kids that it’s okay to be a human being seems like a pretty good idea to me.

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      • Sez Me says

        Bahaha, I love this part:

        ‘You got nothing but unicorns and rainbows in your social toolkit and life will punch you in the face, hard, and then steal your unicorn and shit on your rainbow’

        So true. So true it hurts. Along with the rest of your comments about how people learn to manage their emotions, I might add! ;-)

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    • says

      I find Motherhood to be Life Fullfilung!!
      Yet I quickly learned it can make u loose your mind in a second… Maybe that is why I kept it at ONE!!
      My daughter is Truly the Best Human Being I have ever met!!! Plus Lucky me She is even My Best Friend!!!… Still with all this said I don’t think that a day goes by with me telling her in a chanting way
      “I am loosing my Patience!!”…
      In conclusion I admire and Respect All Moms out There!!, especially the Ones that have more than One!!

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  2. Sonia says

    You don’t have to be all picture perfect like the stepdads wives . I have twin girls approaching a year and whole I may be a novice , I finds self struggling to hold it together and not lose my mind through the tantrums and meal times

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    • Alexandra says

      Sonia, I have 18 month old twin girls and work full-time. Please know you are not alone and will not lose your mind.If loving them were enough everyone would be a mom. Twins is tough and I am sure you would agree – as hard is it is and jeez, it is tough but they are so worth it, Hang in there!!!!!

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    • Sonia says

      I did mean stepford wives, damn auto correct. I meant to say that getting my act together despite being new to this whole motherhood things is a tremendous task. I wish I could pretend sleep all through half my day and not have to deal with the shit… Literally …

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    • Lisa Morguess says

      I have twin girls, too! The Annabelle in that piece I wrote is one half of my twins, who will be nine next month. They are by far more of a handful than any of my other kids.

      Sigh.

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    • Gillian says

      I’m a full time step-parent, my kid doesn’t get to come every other weekend, he’s there EVERY SINGLE DAY. And i can still sympathize with this blog. Sometimes I lose my mind on him. I have been his mother longer than his bio-mom, and he drives me crazy sometimes. He’s 11, and doesn’t see me as authority even after 6 years and his dad working out of town. We’re slowly becoming buddies though, and he’s grateful that I’m there. But I’ve been known to lose my shit. Step-parenting is a whole new ballgame, but there’s a lot of similiarities to bio-parents. We aren’t perfect either, but our children know we love them.

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      • Mary says

        I LOVE everything you just said! I’m a stepmother to 3 girls ages 6, 13, and 15. And I have one from before I was married (she’s 7) and one with my husband (he’s 8 months). Your post just made me feel like I’m not alone! Step parenting is just as hard if not harder than raising your biological kids. But you love them all the same. SERIOUSLY thank you for posting this! LOVE IT!

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        • Tammy says

          Thank you both for your post.I have been with my husband since 2000 we did not get married until 2003 for he was bring two kids in & I already had three. The ages of our children was 2, 5, & 7. And we had full custody of all five. It was hard a lot of time but also very rewarding. Now they are all young adults. Just hang in there it does get better. But I think we all lost it at one point or another I know I did especially early teens. Now I miss the bed time stories & the make believe holidays. so enjoy your time when they are young. For they grow up to fast & you are not alone.

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      • Holly says

        Ahhh, I can relate….I have three step-sons (one lives with us) and 2 daughters….life was a circus when the boys were all young…it is SO much easier now that they are older but still hard….

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      • Vicki says

        I’m a stepmom also. That is entirely a different ball game. I raised my stepdaughter with my girls. There are so many boundaries and it’s not easy. Rules do not apply in each household. My husband and I were huge on education, but her mother, let’s just say was not. We would enforce the rules and she would run to her mom. It was bad. She was out of control so many times. We even had to get the authorities involved. But, I never gave up on her. I refused to do what her mother did. Now she’s 23 and her and I have the best relationship ever. It was tough but worth it

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      • Sandrina says

        Oh I know exactly how you feel I have 3 of my own and my husband has 2 who both live with us 17 yr old girl and a 20 yr old boy. My step daughter just started living with us about a year ago she has been the most challenging due to the fact nom let her do what ever she dam well pleased my stepson has always been with us he is my son I don’t think of him as a step kid because he’s always been with us. Bio mom is currently incarrserated and we have always been on good terms but she has been in and out most of there lives, and it makes parenting my stepdaughter so hard. My husband is no help they might as well be mine. I try and try but it just feels as if they don’t appreciate shit .

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      • Tamara says

        I’m a step-parent to 3 (& I have 2 of my own)… his come every other weekend (mine are with us full time). But yes, the step-mother role is a hard one… we aren’t their mother, but we are a parent figure and our house has rules…. it’s hard… walking that fine line…. and I’m still learning to navigate. It’s hard on us because we care… even when we feel like we are the only ones who (as I say) “give a shit”. Good luck :)

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    • Nichole says

      I am both a full time mom to my kiddos, have done the single mom thing, and I have a step-son who is here every other weekend. Add to it a child with special needs. Each type of parenting has it’s own set of challenges, and each deserves to be respected. My hats off to parents of all kinds, biological, step-parents, adoptive parents, single parents, co-parents, good old fashioned married parents, and special needs parents. Hang in there each of you, we all have our challenging moments, as do our children, and each of us just need to know there are folks out there who get it.

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    • Molly says

      I’ve been a part-time step-parent as well as a full-time mum and I can confirm the step-parent part is the hardest. Especially when the step-child’s mother does everything she can to destabilise the poor kid before he comes to us. (“Don’t listen to her she’s not your mother”, “That little bastard’s not your real sister” (she’s his half sister) etc)

      Parenthood is hard at the best of times, but as full time carer of your own child it’s possible to work through difficult issues without time limits, you’re able to be consistent and provide support and reassurance. As a step-parent you’re constantly on shakey ground, especially if the bio-mum is a sociopath. You’ve got just as much responsibility for this little person’s mental and physical wellbeing as you would for your own child but none of the security or power to do the right thing by them.

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    • Heather says

      Marie
      I am a stepmom to three – one is 27 and lives on his own, one is a 17 year old girl, and one is an 11 your old boy. I have a son (19) and a daughter (21).
      I have been with my husband for 7 years, so have been in the 11 year old’s life since he was 4. Unfortuantely his father (my wonderful husband ~ and he really is) and his biological mother let him get away with whatever. I have been the one to instigate rules in the house, set chores out (no, you are NOT going to be on the computer/TV/Xbox alls day!) (and set a limit on that ~ 2 hours). It was just easier to let him do whatever he wanted and avoid the confrontation.
      I had done that with my own son to a degree, and learned from it!! So when I have to be strict with the 11 year old, remind him again of the rules in our home (he is week on week off with his mom and us) it is often a struggle.
      I find myself sometimes saying ‘fuck it’ and just letting things go (going overtime on TV time for example, or acting like it is the worst thing EVER to have to do a chore!), just because I know I will truly lose it if I don’t. I am not perfect, and I have yelled. But sometimes that is what is needed to get kids to listen and act.
      Best of luck to everyone – we are amazing, doing the best we can.
      I can honestly say that by being stronger/stricter/expecting more from my own two (I was a single mom from my son being 10 and my daughter being 12), the teenage years were wonderful, and they are both now responsible, caring young adults.
      It is so worth it.

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      • Kristina says

        Wow!! I am in the same boat as you are Heather. I was a single mother and raised two children basically by myself and was fairly strict with them. They too are respectful accomplishing adutls. I am now remarried had another child who is now 4 and with the marriage came a stepson who is now 9. I am continuing my strick parenting with my own son and trying to with my stepson but end up being called too strict. We shard 50/50 custody with his mother and it has been more than a challenge with my stepson. I have so much bitterness towards his mother for raising a disrespectful brat. The worst part is that my husband wants so much for his son to like our home that he forgoes all the rules. Making my life miserable!! What rules apply to our son do not apply to my stepson. I know that its only a matter of time before my son will see the way they are treated differently. I really do love my husband but dont know how much longer that I can take this. I have begged to use the same rules on both of the children but it never seems to happen. I am told that I am too strict with my stepson. I constantly remind him to flush the toilet, pick up his dirty clothes, through away his trash and put his plate in the sink. Basic things that every 9 year old should know. Well despite my continuous nagging (that is what my husband calls it, I call it mothering) he does not do any of it without being told or throughing a fit. I am at a loss. Dont know what else I could do. I guess that i could just let them raise themselves and let them go wild and do whatever the hell they want to. Maybe then my husband would be happy. I am one very sad mother and stepmother.

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        • Maria G says

          I’m at the other end of the spectrum as far as co-parenting. My older 2 go to their fathers house on the weekend. And let me tell you, my daughter comes home thinking she rules the roost. She gets to do whatever she wants at dads house. My son on the other hand comes home the same way he left, humble. They don’t biologically have the same father but he claims our son as his own. During the school year I had to choose to drive them to a school that was 10 miles from my home just to insure that their father and I didn’t end up back in court for custody. He’s very manipulative. And I didn’t have the money for an attorney. Thats going to change this year. I will not be pushed around anymore! Sorry for the rant thats the first time I have told anybody that.

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      • Chris says

        I’m dating a mom who is just like your husband when it comes to discipline and the ability to say “no” (and mean it). Her kids are terrors too. No marriage in my future.

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    • Ronda says

      I can related to the co-parenting, the step-parenting, and the full time parenting. My sons go to their dad’s house, eh, maybe thrice a week in the evenings, and maybe a day during the weekends, depending upon his availability. The rules are different at his house, and I’m constantly having to undo the bad habits he not only allows, but actually reinforces (i.e., daily ice cream, donuts for breakfast, staying up past midnight, doing school work while watching t.v.). Daily, they live with me, but it only takes one day with him for me to hear, “but dad let’s me do it.” and “Dad never makes us do that.” Ugh. And then there are the stepsons. They used to visit every summer. Now one lives with us full time. The summer visits were a nightmare for me. Despite the “things will be different this time” promises we made in June, by mid-July, chaos managed to work it’s way back into our household. From little things like re-learning how to wash a dish when you’ve used it, to big things like not spending all day every on the internet and yes, I absolutely will monitor the websites you view, it was like raising a teenager from a toddler in two and a half months every. single. time. Now that one lives with us, we are working to undo the damage that’s been done (i.e., “mom says there’s no need to read a book if there’s a movie about it” *cringe*), and the other one won’t visit anymore because, apparently, our rules are too strict (like the “no setting fires in the garage” rule, for instance). Anyhow, yes, motherhood, co-motherhood, step-motherhood… they are all thankless. Worth it? Absolutely. But a bit like beating one’s head against a brick wall.

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    • Jen says

      As a step-parent I think you CAN love your step child as much as your own. I know I do. Difference is, I have left her mother know that this is MY house and MY rules will be followed here and my step daughter knows it. She loves me to death. I take her shopping, she runs to hug me as soon as I walk in the door, we do family things together all the time and she clings to me a lot of times instead of dad even though she loves her dad to death. She does know my rules and she is much better behaved here than at home. Her mom also tries to be a friend instead of a parent and my step daughter actually prefers to be HERE where the rules are. She told my husband she won’t step out of line because she’s afraid to here. Lol. That’s a good thing. She’ll never get into big trouble as long as she’s at my house. As for my boys….I have blown up on them like this mom has and we are implementing new punishments. For instance…not listening gets met with having to sit for 1/2 and hour and increased by 1/2 an hour each time after. Needless to say we don’t go past the first 1/2 hour…..it’s enough to kill them. Lol. The rule is that basically if they cannot listen then they are not safe and if they can’t listen so they can be safe then they need to sit. (I may want to mention that my boys both have ADHD and we are trying to improve their focus and this is helping. I don’t believe that JUST medication helps like some people seem to. I HATE medications so tweeking behaviors is my other and better option.) If my boys are disrespectful to my husband in any way they are punished (early bedtime, not allowed to go out, no bedtime movie for some examples depending on the severity of the actions). They love him to death but still try to push buttons and need reminded from time to time. (and he is their dad to be honest…their biological dad chooses to do his own thing and not be part of their lives. His own personal desires are more important and come first. He’s only seen them for a total of 7 hours this past year.) I guess what I’m trying to say to begin with as far as the stepchildren is that if your husband is behind you and is willing to make sure the ex understands that it’s your house your rules things will be a lot better. Of course, I’m very outspoken so I left my husband’s ex know this on my own…she simply needed put in her place(and she now thanks me for being so good to her daughter and invites me to little parties at her house…it’s comical). Remember, that child may be her child biologically, but she is now part of your life to for the rest of your life and has to respect you too. Once mom realizes you have the best of intention and are treating her child well she’ll back off (for the most part…there are always still those times when she’ll have a bad day and decide to be difficult). It’s not fair for your life to be in shambles because mom is causing resistance and it’s no good for your relationship with your step child if you don’t set those boundaries and make sure she respects you and knows your rules. In fact, it’s not good for your relationship with you and your husband either.

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    • Mike says

      Sonia….being a single Dad and trying to balance parenthood and a personal relationship is no Swiss picnic either. Eventually my girlfriend has felt ostracized by the kids since their Mom usually doesn’t have nice things to say about her to them. So matters are often less than “picture perfect.” But we trudge on, and do the best we can for them knowing that it will all work out in the end. Good luck with your crew and stay strong.

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    • Stephanie Post says

      I have twins as well…As much as I imagine running away… I never would. Some people call twins “Double Trouble” NO IT’S “Double Blessings!” You will get a routine down and the parenting down to Sonia… it takes time. Especially since you are also a first time mom, I can just imagine your stress! I have two older children as well, one almost 21yrs and the other 16yrs, I have often said, that my heart goes out to first time moms with multiplies because just having one baby as a first timer is stressful… every cry, every little fever sends you into a panic, sanitize everything to protect your baby, a first time position is hard, make it a double and yowzers! Having twins when you have already have children and you don’t panic about every little thing and realize that mommy spit cleans the face better than a wipe, and rubbing a little dirt in that scraped knee does make it feel better and it helps build up your childs immune system.(lol j/k) ;) You also learn that you just don’t care that your kids demanded to dress as Captain America and Woody to go run errands with you at Target, and when you head out the door with your kids, you grab your Superman cape and put a tiara on too. Because YOU are A mom… and YOU kick ass!

      Just Breathe…

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  3. ThePioneerMom says

    Holy Hell! Yes! Respect and gratitude are my big ones. It wouldn’t be so hard to be a mother if they had one ounce of appreciation in their bodies or said ‘thank you’ without me turning into the manners police. You are most definitely NOT alone! Venting can be a healthy thing (just not in front of the kids – and I am VERY guilty of doing this myself). It’s so f-ing hard! Hang in there, momma!! XOXO

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    • Christine says

      You are 1000% correct! It’s not the ‘thank you’ that I am waiting for – just the obedience and doing what I ask without questioning or arguing. We beat ourselves up so much when that last nerve has been obliterated and after we’ve given and given and then given some more and still can’t have done what we’ve asked. It is completely exhausting. Thank you for this today. It strengthens my resolve to continue, knowing that I’m not a bad mom – just human like everyone else!! Soldier on fellow moms!

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  4. The Milk Meg says

    Thank you for sharing what we have all felt! We all have been there and we all would like to yell a big fat fuck you back at motherhood at times. So often mums appear to have it all together when the reality is that it’s damn hard!

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  5. Annie says

    Fuck that! What are you meant to have fine wrong exactly?! Sometimes kids need to know that you are a person too. Not just a robot who makes everything happen and remembers every minute detail of the whole families diary. Well fine for posting this. I often lose it at my kids, but I try to go back and repair the relationship later. That doesn’t mean making them feel like everything they did/said was ok but getting them to understand that I’m a person also. I love your bravery! Thank you for a most helpful post. Annie, UK

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    • says

      Annie – yes, I totally agree that our kids need to know that we’re human – that we have feelings and that we get hurt, annoyed, and just downright exhausted at times. But I think you touched on exactly what I was going to write (@lisa, maybe you already did this…) … we need to go back afterwards and repair the relationship… because as much as we’re not robots, we’re not dictators or overlords either. When we have these breakdowns it isn’t in an effort to scare them straight – it is an outcry of our soul to be heard. I always find it difficult but oh-so-necessary to go back as soon as possible and say “Honey, Mom’s really sorry for (insert behavior here). I was wrong to act that way. I know that isn’t an acceptable way to deal with my emotions and I am trying to do a better job as your mom. Please understand that I was upset because you (insert their behavior here) and that is really frustrating to me – can you help me out and try to not do that anymore? And I’ll try to communicate better. I love you – will you forgive me?” – it sounds very “Dr. Laura” but kids need to be talked to respectfully, especially when you are the one that was in the wrong.

      **High five for similar thoughts**

      -Bethany-

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          • Angie says

            Yelling at my kids for misbehaving is one thing. If I “yell” (Kids call it yelling, i say im speaking in a loud tone of voice) i will not apoligize. Loseing my shit and going crazy…. you bet your butt I will apologize. My kids do need to know that I can make mistakes.

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        • Gen says

          Yep, the kid does owe you the apology because his/her behavior was out of line. That’s why I’ve scrapped the phrase “Oh, that’s ok” in favor of “I forgive you” because their outburst is NOT ok. But how is that child going to learn how to apologize for their behavior in the first place? We apologize to our kids when we, ourselves, get out of line in our behavior because that’s precisely what we want them to do. How awesome would it be to have your child come up to you after a stormy tantrum and time-out and say “*sigh* Mom, I’m sorry for yelling at you.” – It may never happen because that takes a huge amount of maturity, but I do get an “I forgive you” when the occasion comes up, and I feel it’s a start.

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    • Lauren says

      I totally agree with you, Annie! Children DO need to see their moms as PEOPLE and not just servants etc. And while I do not think children should be made responsible for our happiness, they (esp. the older kids) do need to be aware that their behavior has an impact on other people. That it is not okay to repeatedly act selfishly.

      Bethany, I agree that when we say things out of anger and frustration that we need to go back and explain and maybe even apologize. Kids always need to know that they are loved and respected AND that that love and respect is a two way street!

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      • MommySS85 says

        Oh yes, my two have this strange nothing that they will get what they want by saying ‘get me this’ or ‘go do that’…I stop in what I’m doing, give them a blank stare, and say, “what?? I’m sorry, I don’t think I heard you–I only hear “may-I-please-do-this” and “can-you-get-me-that,” so TRY AGAIN! Lol

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    • Melinda Rito says

      What a wonderful feeling it is to know I’m not the only one who has days like this. Oh, how repetitive this job is. I have this same (and many others) argument with my kids on a near daily basis!! Also, I’ve pretty much gone on strike. I don’t kill myself cleaning up after my kids anymore. What is the darn point?!? Thank you for posting this.

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    • Amy G says

      Thank you for this. I know as a mom of 2 young boys I have often felt this way. And I think we all know that motherhood is not all sunshine & lollipops the media and society tries to make it out to be. I’m a single mom but have a lot of family help and still at times feel overwhelmed and don’t have a moment to myself and when the disrespect comes with it sometimes it makes us all want to throw in the towel. And I only have 2 kids. I couldn’t imagine 7!! God bless you!

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    • Hollie says

      Thank you, thank you, thank you! I lost my shit tonight at dinner when my 5yo son told me “how many times have I told you I don’t like cut up carrots” I stood at the counter and went zero to sixty in .5 seconds. And it wasn’t because I had just finished doing the other smalls homework, and my homework, and packing lunches and making dinner (cut up carrots and all) it wasn’t even because the Hubby text to say he’d be home late (again). It was most certainly because at that moment motherhood felt like a big ol’ F you. This article made me feel so much less alone.

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    • Jeff Friesen says

      Losing it every now and again, as long as it doesn’t cross the line into abuse, is a good and healthy thing for kids. It shows then in a safe way that there is a line, they can cross it, and there are downsides. Better with a loving mom than some dude on the street after they grow into coddled assholes. Keep up the good work.

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    • tina says

      I kinda have to laugh and by that i dont mean at you i mean in general because i went threw the same thing this morning. 7am and.my 2 were.hitting bitting kicking yelling screaming and you cant ever get 5 minutes of peace. Good luck darlin we all need it.

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    • Amber says

      Love and Logic. That’s all I gotta say. I was that screaming horrible angry mom for a long while. Literally every thing I asked was argued over and ignored. It soon escalated to nasty words to me. I raise one child and was NEVER talked to or treated like that and I couldn’t understand how this one could be such a problem. Of course I didn’t come into her life till she was 3 1/2 and there were major complications with her situation to begin with. There were many factors that resulted in little miss turning into the uncontrollable selfish witch. For two years I fought with her. I finally admitted I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t even stand the thought of being in the same room as this child.

      Then I let go of the control and turned to Love and Logic. It’s very simple. Hand the problem back to them. Natural consequences are the key. It’s been three months and I haven’t felt the need to yell. It’s been 6 months since I’ve used spanking as a form of punishment. It all about choices and consequences.

      It has NOT been easy. I tried before, when I started losing with with my sons behavior. It worked great with him. But I have the mother/child bond from birth and he didn’t go thru what little miss has gone thru. I had another problem with the situation. It wasn’t till that problem was removed that I was able to become the mom I am today. I’ve got to say it’s an amazing change. I still get annoyed and frustrated with her but no longer do I get out of control.

      I can’t say I love little miss yet. But the damage that has been done is slowly repairing and our bond is growing little bit every day. I can’t begin to express how important it is to use Love and Logic. If you are interested look it up. It help BOTH the parents and the children. There’s nothing to buy, most places offer classes and they usually free. I loved them, they led me to a peace of mind I don’t think I could have found otherwise.

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    • Abigail says

      You know, I’ve had moments like this too. Disciplining and reprimanding a child is easier when things are black and white, at least IMO. Yes means yes, no means no. You try to bend those rules, you lose privileges. Children today aren’t taught to appreciate simplicity because we love them sometimes the wrong way. I’m glad you posted this, it starts when they are really little, pushing those boundaries, and when you’re tired, we give in at times. Hang in there and cut yourself a break. People aren’t perfect and your fuse is only so much. Here’s a tip: TV is not an entitlement, its a privilege. If she can’t obey the rules, remove the privilege totally. Get that cable box, yank it out of the TV, and remove it. I pushed that boundary with my dad when I was that age, he cut the cord to the TV. Once they realize mom isn’t playing, rules will be followed ;-) good luck!

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    • Tamara says

      I feel as if I wrote this. The chasing, the screaming, breaking down and having an emotional histerical cry in front of your kids. Afterward I really felt alone and like a horrible mother. Who does this? Have they really pushed me that far over the edge? Thank you to you and everyone else commenting about their “Fuck you to motherhood” moments, I don’t feel as crazy as I did 5 minutes ago.

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    • Renee says

      You are Completely understood.
      Motherhood isN’t all smiles and warm fuzzies, and we don’t need to pretend like it is either.
      #Honesty – it’s good for Us, and often times it’s just what someone else going through the Same thing needs too!

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    • Rochelle says

      Honey, no criticism here. Your saying exactly what 99℅ of mothers feel but dont voice. I’m very happy I came across this article because just like you, I feel alone with these emotions too and its nice to see and not only hear that it’s a normal mom thing. Thank you for this.

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    • Heather says

      Oh …yeah….my boys are 23, 21 and 17 and I have felt that way much of the time. It has been less as they have gotten older…but the 17 year old is still pretty much an ungrateful puke. :-) lol Motherhood is not for the faint of heart.

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    • MommySS85 says

      I agree! When I lose my temper in front of our 7 & 5 year old, I don’t cuss, but things come out like “you know better, it’s no longer an accident, it’s laziness!” and “if I have to tell either of you to eat your food, sit down, or lower your voice for the 10th time ib the last 15 minutes, Mommy’s going to flip out!!” I always feel like a terrible mother afterwards, but I’m learning not to beat myself up too much…I hug them, kiss them, tell them I Love You, and apologize for losing my temper, but in the same breath tell them “Mommy’s not perfect, and we will all get a temper every now and then. Don’t hit anyone when you’re angry, and don’t make any holes in the wall, and go on.”

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    • says

      Im not going to judge you because I think that we have all been there. I have 4 kids now all teenagers and they are so disrespectful. I remember if I would have done that to my mom and dad I would have been punished. I wish we could go back to those days because no one talked back or they got smacked. Keep your head up it only gets worse sorry but true.

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  6. Nicole says

    You are definitely not alone. I could’ve written your post and I only have two. I honestly don’t know how you do it. Seven!? Really?! Cuddles to you!

    Trying to Stay Sane Too!

    BTW…I too have written about this – check it out -http://nicolewolf.com/mommy-dearest/

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  7. Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

    Not only are you not alone, but your honesty here is going to make thousands of women feel a lot less like shit today.

    I had a really rough afternoon with my second-grader yesterday, who brought home math homework that he hadn’t completed in school because he wasn’t paying attention to the lesson. So we worked on the homework. Lot’s of “I can’t” ensued. I tried to stay cool. I really did. I FAILED, EPICALLY, SPECTACULARLY. I thought, “This would make a great blog post. But… no. Too embarrassing. Everyone will think I’m crazy.” And I went to bed thinking that I am a horrible mother. That I don’t even deserve to be a mother. That I’m going to mess my kid up by screaming at him, and he’s going to grow up to hate me.

    Thank you for making me feel a little less crazy.

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      • Jami says

        Ever notice that “homework” is a combination of two 4 letter words?! I have two boys, 7th and 4th grade and I dread homework more than they do I think. I didn’t spend as much time on my own school work as I do helping them & going over it with them. ugh…

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    • Ashley @ It's Fitting says

      God, I feel ya. There are times when I’m like… uhhh, that may have been a BIT over the top that I’m screaming at my kid over homework. Or clearing the table. Or breathing at me too loudly. I was reading the book Love and Logic and I was pretty much the example of what NOT to do. Eff.

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    • Mary says

      You are not crazy love! And like you said she posted something that we all want to say but don’t have the balls! You going to bed and feeling like that is what makes you a GOOD mom. I do the same exact thing anytime I lose my shit with my kids. (Btw. I have a 2nd grader that does the exact thing while doing homework! Deep breaths sometimes don’t even come close to helping! Youre not alone AT ALL!) We are only human.

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    • Shannon says

      “Not only are you not alone, but your honesty here is going to make thousands of women feel a lot less like shit today.”

      ^This! Today sucked. Have hopes for tomorrow, but not super optimistic at this point. I will keep trying.

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      • Amy says

        Yes! And this did help me more than you can imagine just knowing I’m not the only one that thinks this way. Before we had our first (and likely only, given our age), I had these ridiculous standards and ideas about how I would behave. I would NEVER freak out and lose it like my mom- panic attacks and all. I would talk softly and calmly and keep myself together for his sake no matter what happened. Then he turned three. Oh God, I’m losing my mind.

        Anyway, every day (evenings are the worst for us) is more draining than the last and I wonder how it will get better. But reading this makes me feel better knowing it’s not just me and I’m not horrible for thinking it’s a curse at times to be a mom.

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    • LauraPlus3 says

      I have 3 tween/preteen daughters and they give me a run for my money almost EVERY morning! Most days I drop them off and cry all the way to work. Cry because I feel like a piece of shit mom, cry because I hate my husband for leaving me to do this alone most of the time, Cry because you want everyday to go smoothly and it seems like it never does. I swear most days my youngest pisses me off on purpose.

      I know they are kids and OMG we do love them! But am I the only one that sometimes the sound of their voice just makes me cringe?! AND don’t get me started on the whining!

      I salute every one of you ladies! Thank you for helping me feel less shitty and showing me I am not alone!

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      • josilver says

        Have you heard of third child syndrome, something like that, it’s a thing where your third child is the most testing, or feels the most testing. It’s because they follow the clever one, the pretty one, or the funny one, or whatever the label, so they get to be the ‘pain in the butt’ one! Since I heard about this, I’ve felt a whole lot better, and a lot more patient with my third child. It may be a load of hearsay, but I like it!

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  8. Allyson Bossie says

    Ugh, but am I the only one who feels epic guilt later? I so want to be nothing like my mother was. She is mentally ill so in her defense, I am unsure if she can help her various personalities-some of which are down right evil. But when I say things in a melt down from sheer exhaustion, I feel so bad that they might feel as awful as I did, and still do when I dream about my life growing up. Shit haunts you for life, you know? Even with tons of therapy, you can’t stop the dreams..

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    • Lisa Morguess says

      Of course I feel guilty later. I feel guilty almost all the time. That’s probably a big reason why I wrote about losing my shit – why I write about motherhood at all. The guilt, the guilt.

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      • Andrea says

        Guilt is so much of motherhood. I know you know you are not alone and I thank you for sharing so I can realize I am not alone too. So much of what you wrote feels like it came from my thoughts that I have daily. Hope your day improved from that point.

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    • Missy Homemaker says

      I’d be more worried if a parent went off like this and didn’t feel any guilt. I go off on my kids, and when I’ve cooled down, I apologize for handling things the way I did and let them know what it is I expect them to do differently. That apology goes a long way.

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      • Mary says

        Guilt is what makes us good mothers even if we lose are shit! If guilt wasn’t apart of the after affect we wouldnt be good mothers. I always talk to mine after as well and apologize that mommy had a melt down and explain why I had the meltdown. I absolutely LOVE this blog. I needed this in my life!

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    • Katie says

      It’s hard to parent a certain way if you were not raised in a loving safe environment. I’m pretty sure my mom had a personality disorder when raising us. My father had anger issues due to his past…so it’s difficult to know how to parent the right way if you never had positive examples yourself. Books, parenting classes, other women in your life can be good tools for improving.

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      • sarah says

        I agree with you 100%,I had a single mom and the father addicted to everything possible. I feel i raise my kids the way I wish I was raised. I have 6 from 19yrs – 2yrs. I agree and the whole t.v. thing as well. I have my explosions (#1 is respect) after I sit down I discus with them about why I felt the way I did, and that I dislike there action not them. We can hug it out and cry it out together. Lmao wish they came with instructions♡

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    • Laura Henry says

      This was my life as a child all the time, on the opposite end, and it was horrifying. I hated being at home because my mom would never let me be. I was in all AP classes in high school and many extra curricular activities. I got, on average, 4-5 hours of sleep every night trying to keep up. I was grateful to have had those experiences, but I simply did not have the energy to comply with my stay-at-home mom’s many demands. On top of that, she complained to me about every aspect of her life, including my dad and their sex life. There were a lot of nice things that she did for me, but NEVER EVER did she not complain about it during and afterward. She manipulated me, lied to me, read my personal diary and emails, and accused me, my sister, and my dad or terrible things that we didn’t do. She seemed incapable of apologizing to anyone, and often accused other people of the things she did. Then she wondered why we didn’t treat her with the utmost love and respect.

      I think every parent deserves forgiveness if they overreact when they are emotionally at the end of their rope. Parenting is the toughest job in the world. Just make sure you do not make a habit of always reacting this way to your kids when they do something you don’t like. Please do your best to be the kind of person you would like to see your kids become. Of course you are not and will never be perfect and neither will your kids. But please understand that as much as you want them to love and respect you as a real person, they want you to love, accept, and respect them as their own individual person. It is a two-way street. As an adult you are experienced enough to be able to understand this. Treat your child as you wish them to treat you, and they will learn… eventually. Remember that they depend on you as their biggest teacher. When you feel emotionally drained or if you have just blown up at them, talk with them respectfully once you have calmed down, explaining how you felt and why, and also being respectful of how they felt and why. Come up with a solution together. Keep your relationships with your friends and family strong so that you have the support you need. Do these things if you value your relationship with your child. Don’t let it dissintigrate as mine did with my mom.

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      • sarah says

        I’m so sorry to hear this, i have a senior in high school and she is the oldest. I would hate to think that she felt this way. It sounds like your mom need some one. I am not defending her by any means, but let me just say this. As a house wife we give up so much, we make our children everything. Literally our everything. We forget you need a mom more than we need a friend sometimes. I have a deal with my daughter, that she can’t walk away while I’m talking and i will give her the same respect. It helps ….sometimes. I appreciate your perspective and you have definitely reached me!
        Thank you for that♡

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      • DSchulz says

        Kudos to you Laura for posting a reasonable response! I strongly identify with the main post because we as adults slip up in our efforts no matter how loving we are. There is a sense of trying to always be the perfect example in everything and then BAM it all cracks at once.

        I also identify with your story about your mother, and agree with those who however caustically tried to point out that if your kids lack respect or are ungrateful there is actually something you CAN do about it. I worked out a deal with my 5 year old that there were certain cue’s I would use when something was not ignorable, and I make sure to not direct her every choice, free moment and action for the rest of the time. We also have a fun thing we say sometimes that my sister in law turned me on to… when you are asked to do something for someone, every once in a while, when you are in a particularly cheerful or helpful mood we respond with “I would be delighted to!”.

        Sometimes though you just don’t need a laundry list of things to try, you just need to let off some steam and get confirmation that you are not alone.

        In a way this post and the comments below it satisfies all of these things.

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      • DONM says

        Laura H – Such a great comment. I was feeling as you, when I read the post and all the comments supporting “losing your shit” with your kids. I was reminded of being on the other side – my mom losing her shit with me. And how horrifying, damaging, and chaotic it was.

        Now I’m a mom. And I realized I had a bad role model for motherhood. I’ve lost my shit and felt AWFUL about it. I knew it was wrong. I knew it wasn’t helpful. And I definitely knew I DID NOT want to become like my own mother. But I didn’t know a better way.

        So I sought help. I read numerous books – books about my own upbringing and healing myself, books about how to be a better parent, books about how to talk to your kids. and books about mindfulness. I got therapy to be healthier. And it worked. I refuse to scream at my kids. I will not hit them or threaten them. There are better ways. Using fear, unpredictable outbursts, violence or threats of it, and screaming DOES NOT WORK. I was screamed at, cursed at, hit/spanked, threatened… And I struggled with self confidence and trusting others. My mom actually said lots of the same things I see here – about all I did was take while she gave and how selfish/demanding I was, how much she sacrificed and how ungrateful I was. It all hurt. The pain and damage was so deep – it took years of therapy and lots of work to heal and repair it all.

        If you find yourself losing it a lot, if you find yourself angry and resenting your children often, if you find yourself unhappy much of the time. Get help. It’s fine to have a bad day and we all aren’t perfect. But if you feel guilty, you probably could learn from the experience and work on being a mom who is happy more than sad/angry, who rarely “loses it,” who isn’t resentful most the time, who knows she’s doing her best for herself and her kids.

        I’m not judging – just felt the need to share my experience, as a reformed mom who used to lose it because she was overwhelmed and didn’t know any better to a happier mom who has learned to be more patient, tolerant, calm, and loving (with herself and her kids).

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        • E.G. says

          Why is “losing your shit” as a parent so terrible? Of course, if this type of chaotic parenting is a regular, every day thing then that is definitely not going to get you very far. But if an isolated blow up is enough to have your kids take notice and instills just a bit of fear in them, then I support that. In the end, it is definitely not about having your kids fear you but much more about having them respect your rules.

          I respected my parents growing up, but much of that respect was rooted in the fact that I knew if i screwed up, there would be consequences. So, in turn, that fear of having a favorite toy taken away, being grounded or, in some instances, receiving a good old-fashioned yelling or spanking kept me from acting out too much.

          There is nothing to feel ashamed about regarding a rare aggressive reaction after you’ve been pushed too far. The true shame should be felt if this is how you react to your children every day, since that will do way more harm than good.

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  9. Laurie says

    “It’s because it’s so fucking emotionally taxing.” Yes, yes, yes. I’ve said before that being a mom is such a HUGE emotional mind fuck. And I only have 1 child!! Thanks for keeping it real this morning.

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      • Laurie says

        Really? Small world! More than likely (if you had your place listed on lbar) I clicked longingly through the pictures of your place. We’ve been wanting to move to that area of town for a while. One day! :)

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    • Kerstin says

      For the record, in many ways having 1 is MORE emotionally taxing! When I had my first I had to be his mom AND his entertainment. I always say having 1 was harder in a lot of ways than having 4!

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      • Liz says

        OMG, yes! We have an only that wasn’t meant to be an only and I am sick of him hitting me, teasing me and all that crap he should be doing to someone else! I feel bad telling him Mom just can’t play right now, again and again, we live in the country…it’s exhausting. No one ever told me how much onlies think of themselves as the other adult in the house not the kid.

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