About this Blog

Momfidence! cheers on commonsense parenting and sighs at the rest. How to worry less, wing it more. A.k.a. parenting by the seat of my mid-rise mom jeans.

About Paula Spencer

I'm the author of Momfidence! An Oreo Never Killed Anybody and Other Secrets of Happier Parenting, and a mom of four in Chapel Hill, North Carolina (where you can't even buy Oreos at the two wholesome groceries nearest to my home).

Some Kindred Blogs

"Bad" Is Not a Contest, It's a Badge of Insecurity

May 14, 2009

You've probably noticed that "bad" mothering is all the rage. There's a national contest underway, it seems, for the crown of most horrible mother out there. When I was interviewed on Amy Tiemann's Mojo Mom podcast recently, she brought up how it was hard to get publicity for a mom-oriented book with positive, helpful messages because bookers are wild for renegade mommies, these days. (True Mom Confessions and Bad Mothers being two actual titles among the recent Mother's Day offerings out there.) I know...Momfidence the book was born amidst racy memoirs by ex-rock-groupie mamas and drinkin' mamas.

I don't know about you but I get depressed reading other mothers' deriliction and onedownmanship. It too easily goes beyond catharsis and treads into boring tastelessness.  Do people really give toddlers benadryl so they'll sleep on airplanes? Push over their fledgling walkers for the thrill of it? Tell their kids the pot they're smoking is "incense, like in church"?


I don't want to know. Neither will your kids.

Mostly this trendlet is sad because I thought we've moved past the simplicity of a calculus that says if you're not a Good Mother (sainthood variety), you must be a Bad Mother. (Are you really a Bad Mother if you hide the finger paints because you can't stand the mess, as one mom says? I never bought them in the first place, for that very reason! For that we have preschool!)

Raising kids is boring, messy, complicated, frustrating,et. al. But hello?! That's what you signed up for. Complain to your daddy-o or your best friend, but don't think you have to out-admit anybody. Don't waste your time reading about how comparatively bad you are or aren't.

One thing raising kids definitely isn't, is a contest.

Denise says...

There seems to be competition in every level these days, personally it takes all the "fun" - all sides of parenting - out of being a mummy. What these awful mummies forget - the ones that push their walkers over just for the fun of it etc.- it what goes around comes around. Their kids will treat them back they way the mummies treat them now.

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