Monday, January 17, 2011

Why I Suck As A Mom

One of my downfalls as a mom is I do not think before I speak sometimes. I often shoot straight from the hip then have to go back and apologize for hurt feelings later. You know how parents are supposed to be supportive, kind, encouraging? Well that's not me. I am encouraging but I often do not think before I speak. I sometimes forget that I am dealing with little people. 
A couple examples that come to mind is a week or so ago when I wasn't feeling too hot my kids thought they'd surprise me by rearranging my living and dining rooms. Well a proper mom would have come home and raved about all the hard work and the beauty of the new decor whether she liked it or not. Me? I enter....they say "surprise!" I stare in horror. They say "do you like it mom?" I say truthfully "no, not really. I liked it the way I had it". Their faces fall and their hearts are broken. The damage is done. I still somehow cannot help myself but to say "I do not like the couch here because.....and the table should be turned this way....etc etc." Only when I finish and they are unusually quiet do I realize that I have hurt their feelings. And that the better approach would have been to say excitedly "I Love it! Thank You!" 
Another example is report card time. Marlon returned home with less than desirable grades. We were discussing his D's and his take was, and I quote "a D is passing." I hate when my kids say that! I have told them if they try their best and get a D then a D is fine but if they skimp by and end with a D then that is not okay. I knew that he had not worked his hardest and I was trying to explain my problem with the D. I did try the "you are so much smarter than a D, and you can do it approach!" first but that was getting me nowhere He kept saying "well a D is passing." I got irritated and told him "no a D is for Dumb, Dummy, Deadbeat, Didn't do shit all quarter!" and a few other D examples I could think of.  Yes, I know that is completely  inappropriate. But I was so aggravated and disappointed. (another D word)  I have a really hard time saying things that I really don't believe. I just always prefer to be straight up but I know with kids you gotta pretend sometimes. I just really struggle with that.
My latest failure was this Christmas. Mason who is 9 and makes about $10 a month in allowance because he's kinda lazy,(see I did it again) went Christmas shopping with dad and returned home so excited he could barely contain himself. On Christmas morning he could barely open his stuff because he simply could not wait for me to open my gift from him. When it was my turn to open it I really put on, (we were filming) how much I loved it. It was a watch. A watch that was of the brightest teal color with gold trim and teal diamonds. 
Yes, it's beautiful but rather bright and large huh?
The watch is huge, does not latch on, is more of a bracelet style and I, not being a big fan of accessories, thought it was so not me. No problem I'll put on that I love it, wear it around him a time or two and then all will be harmonious. Mason wanted me to wear it Christmas day. Problem is I am a silver kinda girl. Most of my rings are platinum or silver and very modest. My Christmas outfit was grey with silver trim so a gold and teal watch would've stuck out like a sore wrist. I explained to Mason that it didn't go with my outfit and I would wear it some other time. The RA watched this conversation in horror. He then pulled me aside and said "Really? You are not gonna wear his watch today?" I explained to him the fashion side of it and he felt the "mother side" should outweigh the fashion side. I knew he was right but I just did not want this gawdy huge watch sticking out on my arm all day. So I didn't wear it. Later that night Mason came and asked me if I liked the watch. I said "Oh, I love it!" "Why won't you wear it then?" He asked skeptically. "Oh, I will when I have something to go with it." "Whatever" he replied. He  put his head down and walked away. I knew I had hurt him. So I immediately put it on and made a point for him to notice. He was not impressed. When I pointed out how much I loved my new watch. He said "it doesn't matter now everyone's gone and no one will see it but me and you." I felt horrible. Horrible. What the hell is wrong with you? I said to myself. Where is your motherly empathy? It bothered me for days.
So today I am wearing the watch. It is huge, heavy, and since it is a bracelet style its slides all over my arm Uncomfortable! He saw me with it on and smiled the biggest smile I've seen in a  while but truthfully I could not wait to get to work to take it off. I am a bad mom. The worse kind. I really have to work on being more sensitive to my kids feelings. I really had no big resolutions for the new year but I think I will make this my goal. I truly know better. I just can't stop myself sometimes. What is your biggest downfall as a parent? Please, come on make me feel better.


  1. This is what stood out to me Roc.
    You said, "I truly know better. I just can't stop myself sometimes."
    That may be something to remember when your children do something that disappoints you.

    If parenting was easy my friend more of us would have done it. No parent gets out of this without regrets, doubts and guilt.
    Don't beat yourself up.

  2. Since I don't have kids (that I know of) I am of course, the perfect parent and know everything there is to know about parenting. If you need any advice, just ask.

    Or maybe you shouldn't. ;)

  3. I think it's a great resolution to have and work towards. At least you are aware of what you do, and that you want to change it. That's a start! Your kiddos will appreciate it as well.

  4. Just wait for when they buy you t-shirts that have a suggestive saying on it but they thought was cute because of the picture that went with it. You wear it with pride,and smile. And when you catch someone looking at it, you smile, and tell them with pride that your child bought it for you with their own money. You'll be surprize how many others know just what you are saying...

  5. After "I Love it! Thank You!" would have come 'Now put it back!'. For me anyway.

  6. Yes, parents should be thoughtful before they speak, but as a general rule, people from all walks of life should consider this.

  7. Ragging on your kids for bad grades is not a bad thing if you know the grades are due to lack of effort.

  8. Thanks Peg

    Jay- maybe you should open up a parenting column.

    Candice- I am a work in progress

    Mamma- Only another mother truly gets it.

    Mike- No! I could never do that.

    Sundar- That is very true. Good point.

    ASM- And that is exactly what pisses me off. It is definitely a lack of effort.

  9. OH good grief. You know, you aren't that bad of parent. Your kids presumably know that they are safe, taken care of, and that sometimes, their great ideas really weren't that awesome after all. I hurt my kids feelings accidentally all the time. Come home, and there's a 'tea party' when really, all I want to do is put my feet up, and chill, not play and pretend to interact with dolls. (I've gotten around this, sometimes I just grin and bear it, it's like sex, sometimes you don't feel like it, but once you get into it, you get the groove, and other times, I just say 'Listen, give mommy 20 minutes, and then I'll come play'. Sometimes they run away and forget, sometimes I get my 10 minutes. And as far as the grades? need a kick in the ass.