Please Stop Apologizing For Not Being Perfect

by Amy Nielson
Originally Published: 
A mother holding a baby on her chest while the baby is jawning

Dear fellow moms out there,

I’m tired of hearing your excuses. And I’m sick of making them myself.

Why do we feel like we have to account for our every imperfection to our neighbors and friends? Why are we attempting to justify things we can’t always change or things we don’t even want to?

I don’t need you to explain to me that your daughter dressed herself this morning. I already figured that out, and guess what? She’s rocking that purple-striped, red polkadot, pink-hearted combo she put on backwards. Her hairstyle isn’t going to make a viral YouTube tutorial, but she doesn’t care, and neither do I. You got a comb through it. Congratulations!

Your house isn’t clean? How shocking! You have kids. Your house won’t be clean again for 18 years. It’s cool. Don’t tell me it’s just because you’ve been busy lately, or you’ve had guests. Don’t tell me it’s usually cleaner than this. I really don’t want to hear that, because mine isn’t clean either. It’s been taken over by a destructive force of miniature humans, and it’s all I can do to try and keep a clear pathway to the door.

You don’t fit back into your pre-baby jeans? You’re kidding me! Shame on you (as I hide a donut behind my back). As it turns out, most people don’t. Either they are trying and haven’t made it yet, there is a medical reason it’s not going to happen, or they really don’t give a crap and aren’t trying at all. Whatever the case may be, a girl’s waist size is her own business. Instead of blaming your lack of weight loss progress on a busy schedule or a failing diet fad, just ask me to go for a walk with you. We probably both need it, and it will get the kids outside.

Your bake sale cupcakes don’t look anything like the Pinterest picture? It’s probably not just the recipe’s fault, and that’s OK. After three tries I gave up and bought mine at the store. My kids are thrilled, because the ugly ones at home are free game. Even baking geniuses have epic fails, so I guess it’s OK if we do too. Don’t apologize for your non-perfection! It’s irritating.

Your toddler son just made a naked run for it through the neighborhood? At least he remembered his socks. Let’s be honest. We’ve all been there. Instead of bowing your head in red shame while mumbling reasons he was able to escape the blockade at your door, let’s just laugh about it. These kids could find a way out of Alcatraz. I’m not judging you.

You don’t have to make an early and embarrassed departure from our playdate because your 2-year-old hasn’t mastered all forms of social etiquette. Mine smacked someone last time. We’re working on it right along with you.

You don’t have to justify why you chose to put your child on medication, or gave up homeschooling this year. You’re the mom! Do what you think is best. That’s your job. Don’t be sorry for doing it.

In short, next time you feel like apologizing to me for your bad hair day, your messy car, your unmowed lawn or shoeless child — don’t. Stop it. I don’t want to hear it. The only thing you need to apologize to me for is trying to convince me you’re someone you are not. Don’t even bother, because I know better, and oddly enough, I like you just the way you are.

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