Going gray early might be heredity, but I sure know I’ve earned a few extra silver strands since transitioning to motherhood. Taking care of two little human beings is a high pressure role. It can also feel like walking a tightrope with blindfolds and bed of nails beneath your feet when you’re co-parenting with a narcissistic moron. Does it sound like I’m speaking from personal experience?
Too many incidents have pushed me into mama bear mode, or what the aloof parent likes to call crazy. Now, let’s be clear. I’m not talking about those laughable moments when Dad serves cold pizza as a healthy breakfast or forgets to dress the kids in matching socks. I’m referring to everyday neglectful shit that can ultimately put your child at risk. Yesterday, for example, I felt my blood pressure rise and a painful knot at the back of neck as my toddler and 6 year old were set free and told to run across a busy parking lot. Twenty-five hours of labor combined and 6 years flashed before my eyes.
To be fair, there is no manual to being the perfect parent. However, after a few years in and repeatedly trying to offer guidance you begin to realize that the other parent is 1) stupid AF or 2) doesn’t recognize the potential harm because, as T.S. Elliott puts it, “they are absorbed in the endless struggle to think well of themselves”
As a mom, you begin to lose patience and you could care less about the rhyme or reason behind irresponsible or neglectful parenting. When your only concern is to raise your babies in a safe and healthy environment, how can you cope with or get through to a narcissistic co-parent?
When I became a parent I didn’t get a manual with the hospital release forms. I got diapers, a diaper bag and some Similac when I was leaving the hospital. To say I was terrified is putting it mildly. Fast track to now almost nine years, and I will tell you that I am still going through training and “finding myself” as a parent. I get when other parents say it’s THE hardest job, but it’s also the most fulfilling role you will ever have in life. So, how do you know if you are doing a good job? After all, there is no quarterly review on your performance. Here are my five top signs that I use to evaluate myself on a weekly, monthly, quarterly…well every time.
This is my number 1 sign of bad parenting — not taking care of your child’s basic needs, which ranges from your child’s appearance, preparing well balanced meals to simply spending quality time with your child. I have had experiences where one mother told me she has “no time” for play dates, birthday parties or playing with her child in general!
Got in-law problems? Who hasn’t?! In-law tension and conflict is an age old battle that will forge on in families for generations. The dynamics of merging two families together has always been a tricky and touch and go situation. Personally my in-law problems have been a roller coaster ride that I wouldn’t join the line at six flags to ride again! Or would I? This is coming from someone who has never been on a roller coaster! My relationship with my mother-in-law had me reflecting on what type of mother-in-law will I be to my future daughter-in-law. Would I make the same mistakes millions of mother-in-laws have made in the past? My sane-self shouts NOOOO!! I won’t be cause I am more self-aware, smarter, kinder, confident blah,blah,blah.
Well, just in case I lose my sanity and have a mid-life crisis by the time I have a daughter-in-law, here are top five mother-in-law mistakes that I should at least try to avoid making!!
Unsolicited Parenting Advice:
This is one thing that I know have annoyed daughter-in-laws for centuries — the parenting advice that you didn’t ask for. Unsolicited parenting advice from your mother-in-law can and will mostly likely be taken as criticism on how you have decided to raise your children. Solution: keep all parenting advice to yourself unless your daughter-in-law requests your input on a matter.
Why am I surprised that Mother’s Day is the second highest gift giving holiday in the US (right behind Christmas)? I mean, it’s not like we expect some special treatment for growing human beings in our tiny uteruses. Right.
Well, now that we’re only 2 shopping days away from May 10th, I figure it’s a good idea to drop some helpful hints and tips about what we absolutely do not want for Mother’s Day.
While every other website is running slideshows of fabulous gift ideas for mothers of all manner and form, I just want to make it even easier.
The stuff that I’m about to mention, don’t get them. If you’re still clueless about what to get, it’s too late to try and figure it out. Gift cards and dinner reservations will work like a charm.
Here are my top 5 worst Mother’s Day ideas ever:
I decided to scrap my usual relationship/marriage article and talk about another relationship that had me stressing over the past few weeks. I consider my eight year old to be a very intelligent and smart child, however, lately he has lacked the motivation to consistently perform well in school.
One week, he would get be getting all A’s and B’s and then the other week he would just go all the way down to C’s and D’s. As parents we were puzzled by this sort of roller coaster effect with his grades, especially since he was a consistent “A & B” student.
After getting him a professional educational assessment, it came down to the matter of motivation. We had to take a closer look at what we were doing or not doing. With a lot of research and help from a private tutor, my husband and I were able to come up with some effective ways to help and motivate our son:
I recently got a call from one of my younger girlfriends announcing that she was getting married. She was happy that he finally proposed, as they’ve been together for over three years! Personally, I don’t think three years is that long but hey, to each his own.
My younger girlfriend (10 years younger) wanted to specially thank me for all the great advice I gave her throughout her relationship. After finishing up the call, I started thinking about the advice that I gave her. Those tidbits of encouragement and forewarning came purely from my years of experience and counseling sessions.
Looking back at the guidance I gave my girlfriend, I started to wonder what words of wisdom I could have shared with myself before settling down. Here are the top 10 marriage advice I would give to my younger self before getting married: