One of the great things about the “Mommyblogger” phenomenon is that the curtain has been pulled back on motherhood for the culture at large. By divulging their challenges, struggles, and guilty secrets, Mommybloggers have broken the fourth wall in many ways. Remember how every parent you knew in the 1990s had a gifted child? Yeah, that doesn’t happen so much these days. It’s not because kids today are less intelligent, it’s that parenthood has become more transparent than ever.
Yet, there are still some ‘little white mom lies’ of parenting that persist. You know what they are. You probably tell them yourself, but you’d never own up to it. You might even go so far as to judge other moms for doing so. But the time has come to bring these lies out into the light, stop being ashamed and just admit that, even though we’re moms, we’re still human after all.
1. The Bake Sale bait and switch.
We know you bought those cookies at the supermarket. We know you arranged them on a ceramic plate and covered them in plastic wrap just so you could sell them at the school bake sale for $3 less than what you paid for them. How about if you skip the cookies and just donate that money to the school directly? No one’s going to care about the cookies in the end. It’s not about the stinking cookies!
2. I just don’t understand, he/she never does this at home!
Um, we’re pretty sure he/she does. Any professional teacher will tell you that, generally, kids almost never have a completely different personality at school than they do at home. Whatever the problem is, it can be addressed and probably resolved a whole lot faster if you skip the “I’m so shocked” routine, already.
3. The Baby Book.
Ok, nobody is judging you or blaming you on this one. We don’t know who is behind the invention of this diabolical tome, but we’re pretty sure it was somebody’s mother-in-law. The last person who should spend countless hours compiling an exhaustive genealogy of you and your husband’s family, and every detail of the first year of your child’s life…is you. If you’ve just had a baby, we can pretty much guarantee that there’s no way you’ll have that kind of time for the next 18 years or so. So yes, it’s totally fine to fill out that baby book after your kid goes away to college.
4. Sorry the house is such a mess, it’s not usually like this.
Oh really? Do you usually not have children? Then let’s just drop the act, shall we? After all, we’re not Martha Stewart either.
5. Your daughter/son was wonderful in the school play/recital/debate club finals.
We know you weren’t paying attention to our kid. How do we know? Because we don’t even know who your kid is. And that’s fine, really. In fact, when your kid is through with his moment in the spotlight, you can totally join the rest of us in the back of the auditorium who are gossiping about those parents who insist that their kid “never does this at home!”
6. The baby weight.
We’ve ALL been there. Well, most of us. We’ve gotten to that point where the baby responsible for our “baby weight” is old enough to read a box of SnackWell’s. At what point does it become just ‘excess weight’? How about if we all agree that we are allowed to call it ‘baby weight’ for as long as the ‘baby’ is in diapers? That seems reasonable, right?
7. The parents of your kid’s friends are your friends.
Think back. Remember how you felt when your parents made you play with their friends’ kids? You did it, sure, but would you have called them your friends? Probably not, right? Well, the reverse is also true. Just because your kids get along with their kids doesn’t mean you have to be besties. Just play nice, find something harmless to talk about (no politics or religion) and try to relax till it’s time to go home.
8. My daughter and I are best friends.
Okay, we know we’re on thin ice here. Is it possible for a mother and daughter to be best friends? Absolutely. But here’s how it works: you only get to say “my daughter and I are best friends” IF you have actually heard your daughter say, in the presence of an impartial third party, “My mom and I are best friends.” And even then, you probably shouldn’t say it; it just makes the rest of us feel bad.
9. I buy the cookies/ice cream/chips for the kids. They MAKE me buy that stuff!
Can you honestly say that you never, ever touch the unhealthy snack foods that you “buy for the kids?” Did they really force you to buy them at knife point? Last we checked, Mom is the grownup of the outfit and is almost always the one who calls the shots. So if there’s junk food in your home, it’s because YOU wanted it there. Why not just admit that you enjoy an occasional sandwich cookie? It doesn’t make you Mommie Dearest!
10. Drive-thru? Oh, about once a year. You know, for an extra special treat.
Uh-huh. Remember when they invented fast food kids’ meals? We were bombarded with TV and print ads promoting the FUN of kid-sized burgers and fries until we begged our parents to buy them for us. When was the last time you saw a TV commercial for a fast food kid’s meal? We’re willing to bet it’s been at least a little while. Let’s face it, if fast food restaurants were truly hurting for family dollars, they’d find a way to blitz us with advertising 24/7. Somebody is buying those kids’ meals. We know, your kids prefer hummus and kale chips, right? Okay, we’ll let you hold on to this one-for now.
Doesn’t that feel better? Let’s put these ‘Mom Lies’ behind us once and for all! Did we forget any? What are some ‘Mom Lies’ you’ve observed? Or believed?