Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Confessions from a not-so-perfect mother....

Okay, I've said it....I'm completely imperfect. Whew....it's such a relief to finally have it out there in black and white for the world to see. See, the thing is....I've been called "Supermom" many times. Oh, but it's not for anything spectacular that I've done....it's simply because of the number of kids I have. I go through the whole "two sets of twins" speech with perfect strangers and often times the conversation ends with "You ARE Supermom".

Um, no....not quite. I've missed the mark....missed it by several million miles, as a matter of fact. Of course I feel flattered that THEY see me as "Supermom" but then I'll go look at myself in the mirror and wonder what they're seeing that I can't see for myself. I'm no June Cleaver, trust me when I tell you that. I have my shortcomings and I have no qualms about sharing them. It feels good to purge every now and then.

So here's some of my confessions (for this week anyway):

1) I yell at my kids. Yeah, I'm a yeller. But I'll give myself SOME credit....I don't start off yelling at them. I yell after I have to repeat myself 5 or 6 times, as they continue to stare off into space. This is when I came up with the "freezing cold hands" technique that I mentioned in my Supernanny post.

2) I'm horrible at taking time-outs for myself. I read all the time in the parenting magazines that I subscribe to that when you're angry at your children, you need to step away from the situation before you lose control. Well, I fail miserably at that all the time. I know I should take a time-out....I know I should just shut my mouth and keep my thoughts to myself....but sometimes I can't help it. I lose control....my head spins around at least 10 times, my hair stands up on end, steam is spraying out of my ears. Wait...I think I have a picture of what I looked like last week when I was yelling....

3) Sometimes I can just be downright immature....you know, sinking to their level. If they ignore me repeatedly, it's likely that I'll pout and say, "Well, fine....next time you want something from me, I'll just ignore you and see how you like it". To add some more dramatic flare to the situation, I will stomp my feet loudly as I walk away from them.

4) I probably expect more from my kids than what's reasonable. Like, I expect when I say, "clean up your mess" that they will just spring into action....one will grab the huge Dyson vacuum that's about 50 pounds heavier than they are from the closet, one will start scrubbing the kitchen floor on their hands and knees, one will run around the house picking up all the toys while the last one gently waves a fan over my face and feeds me grapes.

5) I can be a drill sargeant when it comes to them eating their fruits and veggies. I have no problem with them eating chicken nuggets everyday for lunch, so long as they eat the apple slices and baby carrots on their plates. They try to outsmart me all the time, as if I'm really that stupid. Last week, Landon put his plate on the kitchen floor behind his chair and said, "All done". As if I couldn't see the plate on the floor behind him??! I may be super tired and I may be a little woozy from lack of food.....but, child, I'm NOT stupid.

6) I try to make them feel guilty. My mother used to do it to me so, the way I see it, it's just a vicious cycle that will never stop. I can't help myself...it's hereditary. Sometimes just whining to them, "Please....pppllleeeaaasseee....go get Mommy some iced tea from the fridge. I've been on my feet all day long doing things for you...can't you just do this one tiny thing for ME....after all, I did give you life". I just have to throw that last line in there..."after all, I did give you life" and that completely seals the deal. They are putty in my hands.

7) When my kids have tantrums, I do not give in. I'll even go so far as to egg them on a little, with "Oh come on now...it's not a full-blown tantrum until you throw your whole body on the ground"....."Nope, still not a tantrum unless you're kicking your legs and banging your fists on the ground"...."What?! No tears??...please....everyone knows it's not an official tantrum until there are TEARS"...."Surely, you can cry harder than that....I mean, if you're gonna embarrass yourself by throwing a tantrum, at least go the extra mile with a good hard cry". I'm not sure which is funnier....the reaction I get from my kiddos or the people who stop and stare at me in horror as I'm taunting my beloved children. I never said I wasn't evil.

Well, that's all I can think of right now....I'm sure there will be more confessions next week. It's inevitable.

So who's on board with me? Wanna share YOUR confession??? And if you feel you're completely faultless, feel free to still leave a comment proudly announcing your perfection (but don't hold me responsible if you start getting hate mail from the non-believers).

41 comments:

Michelle Hoad said...

I don't think any of those things make you a bad mommy. You are there for you kids, physically and emotionally, and that makes you a good mom. We all have things we need to work on and it is important for our kids to see our faults and realize that we aren't perfect and we don't expect them to be either. Unless you are me, cause I'm perfect. Ha, I can't even type it without laughing at myself.

Jenjen © GottaLoveMom said...

Sounds like me, too - those don't make you a bad mommy - just an overworked mom sometimes....

Have a great week!

kel said...

We could be twins. Seriously. I do all that stuff and more.

LauraC said...

Hilarious! I think we all have our confessions!

Nikki B. said...

is that stuff not "normal"....cuz, uh...i may, or may not have had done some of that stuff before and/or everyday!!!!

i egg them on too, when they are frustrated. my oldest is uber-competitive and when he doesn't get it perfect he starts his griping, "i HATE this. this sucks. i never do good."

to which i respond, "well, cry then...that'll make you do better. i bet if you cry, you can throw the ball farther. don'tcha think? i've heard that crying about it will usually make you better at something...go ahead."

god, that's so mean!!!

Mrs. M said...

I know my children (or at least the one that can talk) think I'm totally heartless sometimes. I ignore them into submission-and sometimes I ignore them very loudly. Like when Monkey tells me he's going to run away and I say "Okay, son-you do that. Mommy and the girls are going to watch NiHao Ki-Lan and eat PB&J...can Baby Bug have your legos? Of course she can-you're running away. Bye son. Love you. Write home."

We all do something that our kids will look back on and think how horrible we were....I just try to outweigh that by creating more good memories than bad. Some days that works. Some days not.

Oh well-I'm not Supermom either.

Kristina P. said...

You sound pretty normal to me!

Sharlene said...

Oh honey we are two peas in a pod. I yell. I guilt ( I am the queen of the fake cry). I criticize their tantrums (come on! if you are gonna fake cry at least be good at it!), I am immature (geez they let anyone have kids don't they?), and what the heck is a time out for mommy? Last night Mari put all of her food on Ben's plate and then started clapping for herself because he was all done. Hello! I am right here. Why do they think we are stupid? I think you are super mom. You are keeping two sets of twins alive. I think keeping one set alive is a feat. So if you aren't supermom than I cna't be super mom and damnit I'm supermom!

The High Family said...

I am a 'yeller' too! My own mother is queen of yelling so like you said, hereditary...we were doomed to be yellers. I hate that I lose control on a daily basis BUT sometimes a good 'ol scream is the only way to get my 3 year old's attention. Sad, I know.

Thank you for posting your confessions...I think you are an awesome mommy! We all have our bad days and no one is perfect. You do deserve more sympathy because you have 4x's the craziness in your household!

Love ya Helene aka SuperMOM! :)

MamaHen Em said...

Let's see, I do numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. Also, I'll add to the list:
I have been known to tell my daughter that she looks like a homeless child and I'm about to shave her head if she doesn't comb her hair right now.

I taught my son a new word (that he asked daddy about later) when in a moment of extreme frustration I told him he was being a little sh*t. And I don't swear, ever.

I'm going with the theory that as long as they know I'm not perfect and will make mistakes, they might not need as much therapy later in life. Right?

Mrs Cooper said...

I am so totally with you on number 4. When my mom told me to do something I did spring into action and do. Now my kids move to the beat of their own drum. I even took the cell phone away and it didn't even seem to matter. What gives? You still are SuperMom in my book. Any mom is.

2SetsOfTwins4Me said...

Oh wow, you just described me 100 percent. LOL

Zeemaid said...

I love the egging them on in the tantrum situation.

My old favourite standby is that lip is so big you're gonna trip on it.. The first time I said that to my daughter, she was completely floored.. huhwhat?

Thank goodness there's a nother yeller out there.. :)

Karen said...

Congratulations! You sound like a normal mom!

And the way you handle tantrums? From all my nannying experience, I came to learn that that was the best way to handle a tantrum. Takes the wind out of their sails when the tantrum doesn't freak you out.

AFlowerWithoutAName said...

This has got to be one of the first blogs I've actually read that's honest. All the others say they are, and sound so perfect and what not. At least it sounds that way. I'm glad you're human. I'm not really sure what the others are. I do egg the kids on sometimes, make them feel guilty. I did stop yelling though, mine are 15 and 19 and they started yelling back, so I had to stop that. But I do all the things you do. I don't feel so bad now. Keep up the good work.

3 Bay B Chicks said...

My image of you is shattered, my friend. You're not perfect? WHAT?!?! I will have to re-evaluate my own life, since everything I do as a parent is based on your teachings learned from this blog.

I have to tell you that I am thrilled to finally be back on your site. For about a week, I have been trying to a leave comment, but horrible Internet Explorer would shut down on me. However, brilliance struck this morning and I downloaded Firefox. I am now here without any problems.

All is right with the universe again.

-Francesca

Tracy said...

I still think you're a SuperMom. :)

The Mother said...

LOVE the photo.

My kids are always convinced that I am evil. I consider it a compliment. Especially since I work SO hard on it.

Morgan said...

Not giving into the tantrums is part of being a good mom!

I'm guilty of lecturing over and over. I'm sure they get tired of it, but they're pretty good sports about it.

ComfyMom~Stacey said...

I whine back at my kids when they whine at me.

"mmmoooooommmmm.. I waaannntt a driiiiink!'

"IIiii'mmm Buuuuuuusssyyy Saaaaammm."

"stop that mommy!"

"I will if you will."

"noooooooo."

and on it goes

RamblingMother said...

I am a yeller and I hate it. I only have one so I can't imagine having 4, I think I wouldn't have a voice. Trying desparately to change.

Yaya said...

You should try to make it a point to have time for yourself more often. You deserve it!

newlyweds said...

How funny!! I have my confessions as well, I do all of those things!!! Especially the teasing, eek!

Elizabeth Channel said...

I think #7 is actually psychologically healthy for both parties. I do that too, and I've seen many a tantrum end in laughter over this tactic.

Great post idea!

MommyAmy said...

Love it!

My kids watch WAY too much TV... they'll be 2 in 3 weeks... don't think they really NEED it considering they're easily entertained by kitchen utensils. But I turn the TV on anyway, just so I can leave the room and drink some coffee and post on my blog. Yup, guilty as charged! BAD MOMMY!!!

Your final admission reminded me of a friend of mine who has 4 daughters (within 3 years, all adopted with behavioral/emotional issues). She told me a tale of her girls and how they were going through this awful crying stage, where EVERYTHING warranted a good cry. So she told them, "Fine, you wanna cry? I'll set the timer for 5 minutes and you can cry as much as you want, but once it dings you have to stop. But you HAVE to keep crying for FIVE whole minutes!" So she'd set the timer, they'd cry. After about 2 minutes they'd start pulling themselves together and she'd say, "No no no! You have to keep it up! You have three minutes left!" And so they'd keep crying until their tears turned into laughter because it was so ridiculous! LOL She claims they don't nearly have the crying jags that they used to have around her house.

BlogBaby said...

Are you my mother? No seriously are you?

BlogBaby

BlogBaby said...

I say embrace your inner (and outer) bad Mommy. She's more interesting than those Mrs Molly Perfectpants types anyway.

BlogBaby's BabyMama

Kathy B! said...

Every mommy has a bad mommy streak... just a matter of whether we're willing to admit it or not!

You're rockin' it, Helene. This time is going to fly by and it will be sooo much easier. Trust me on this one....

Stacey said...

I thought that's exactly how moms are. LOL I mean, that's how my mom was when I was a kid...my dad, too, now that I think about it. LOL.

Nobody's perfect, as hard as we might all try. If you've got happy, healthy, well-adjusted kids, you're doing something right, right? ;o)

Mrsbear said...

I have a friend who is constantly marveling, "I don't know how you do it with four kids?" Do what, I always wonder. Usually she means, leave the house, or function on a regular basis vs. curling in to the fetal position and crying myself to sleep. I lose it plenty of times though. Plenty. I shout some, I freak out, I cry when nobody's looking. Then I suck it up and move on. I wonder about those "perfect" seeming moms, I'm pretty sure they've got a sinister secret...or possibly they're robots. ;) Keep it real!

Jen said...

First of all you are fabulous! I am totally mommy crushing on you. I hope that is not weird. ;)

And now would you get out of my head b/c I do all these things too. I yell, I egg them on, I do it all.

And people tell me all the time that I am supermom too. I am SO far from it people, so far.

You are like my kindred mom spirit. I so wish that we lived closer so that we could take a mom time out together.

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

I am so beyond all that... except for #'s 1-7. Those, I am guilty of.
You are a good mommy, see how self reflective you are?

DysFUNctional Mom said...

You are SO my kinda girl!

Deb said...

The whole point of mommyhood is to give your kids lots of ammunition for later. I'm going to make a darn good Jerry Springer episode someday, how about you? :)

P.S. I'm a yeller, too. My husband isn't. It can get pretty confusing around here for our poor kids!

Missy said...

Ooops, you named some of my faults - I am a yeller. I never thought I would be a yeller but I am! UGH! and I definitely need to take Mommy time-outs!

Creative Junkie said...

The other day I was getting into it with my 15 year old. Her attitude just sucks sometimes. Anyway, we were yelling at each other and she turned and stomped away and I was so pissed, that I flipped her the bird.

Unbeknownst to me, my 8 year old was standing right next to me at the time.

I'm pretty much disqualified for the Mother of the Year award every year by January 2.

Tabbatha Rose said...

Im not crazy about the supermom title when ppl find out that I take care of my twin granddaughters along with the boys. Im not supermom Im just responsible, its something that needs to be done and a parents responsibility to do it.

Paula @ Organizing Tips For Moms said...

I can releate! I have to confess that I do all of these things and more. And, I really dislike it when other moms think I must keep a perfect house while being a supermom, just because I am a professional organizer. I'm human!!

twinmama said...

Great list. I was nodding my head through all of those.

My confession? I make fun of my kids. Of course it is kind hearted, but I will tease them especially if they are grumpy or misbehaving. It has backfired because they will get very mad if they catch on that I am laughing at them, but many times they end up laughing with me. Sometimes I just can't take the whining and grumpiness and have to make light of it before I pull my hair out!

Jen Majors (The Avon Lady) said...

I love #7!!! Girl sometimes you just gotta have a little fun w/ life, i mean how else are you supposed to deal with a tantrum?! lol :)

heather@it'stwinsanity said...

Wow. You sound just like ME! You can sign my name to all 7 of those because those are my issues too. Especially the yelling. I hate it but I do it all too often!

I figure that if the children are alive when my husband gets home at the end of the day, I've done my job.

----Roseanne Barr



 
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