A few weeks ago I saw the movie Bad Moms. It was pretty funny and had some hilarious scenes that really made me laugh. But one thing that I didn’t like about the movie was their stereotype of what a bad mom is.
The movie paints mothers out to be these perfect women that have to juggle a career, children, a marriage, PTA meetings, housekeeping, cooking meals and maintaining a great body. Basically, it’s bullshit. After a mini meltdown and some problems in her marriage, the lead character decides to become a “Bad Mom.” Now when I think of a bad mom, it’s someone who stops caring about her kids and life in general. But in the movie, a bad mom is defined by doing things like quitting the PTA and making the kids get their own meals while mom goes for an occasional drink after work.
Raise your hand (I have both of mine up) if you’re a “Bad Mom?” I must be, or I am according to that movie. Because I don’t cook every day and I often have a laundry pile so big that you would swear something was living under it. My daughter isn’t in school yet and I’ve decided that once she starts that if I have time to volunteer for the PTA, cool, I will. And if I don’t? I’m not losing sleep over it. I am a single mom who is trying to juggle a career, do part-time studies, raise a child, maintain relationships and still have fun now and then. So what if I don’t bake vegan, sugar and dairy-free cupcakes? That doesn’t make me any less of a mother.
The movie- and not just the movie- but society in general, demands that we all become super moms. That we make our own soap, and cook all organic and have home décor that is Pinterest worthy and be so super involved in our kid’s lives that they can’t fart without us catching wind of it. (like my pun there?) But seriously, where the heck are these women who are actually doing it all even finding the time? I really don’t mean to sound judgemental in that statement. I just really want to know how they find the time. Please teach me your ways because some days I can barely find time to eat food while it’s still hot!
I can’t speak for any other mom, but time is the enemy for me. I never have enough of it. Between raising a child, and working, and doing school work, and cooking, and cleaning, and laundry, and friendships, and shopping and getting sick and then my child getting sick, there just isn’t enough time in a single day to do everything I want. It does not make me a bad mom if at the end of the day I have a glass of wine and watch mindless TV instead of doing meal plans for the week. And if you do find the time for meal planning? Awesome! Good for you! Seriously, I take my hat off to that. But we are both good moms, and there is no need to feel pressure from anyone to change the way you are handling motherhood.
Here’s the thing about kids. They really don’t have super complex needs. They need to be loved, fed, healthy and happy. Anyone who tries to tell you that they need more than that is full of shit. You are not a bad mom because you gave the kids chicken nuggets for supper. You are not a bad mom because your child missed soccer practice. You are not a bad mom if you are working two jobs and are struggling to get by and can’t afford to buy name brand clothing for your kids. You know what a bad mom is? It’s someone who makes her own well-being a priority over that of her child’s on a routine and constant basis. So unless you are using your finances to buy booze and not filling your fridge with food for your kids to eat, you really aren’t a bad mom.
Bad moms are few and far between. There are tons of amazing mothers out there. Mothers who might not be able to go to all of the PTA meetings or be able to bake something for the bake sale. But that doesn’t matter. The good moms are the silent warriors who go on very little sleep, who sacrifice daily for their children and who love their kids so fiercely that their hearts may explode.
So mommies everywhere, read this and say these five words out loud: I am a good mother. Now say it again. And keep saying it. Say it every day. Say it till it becomes your mantra. Because it’s true. You are a good mom. And good moms deserve a break sometimes. Good moms don’t need to feel guilty over trivial things. So seriously, treat yourself! Buy a bottle of wine tonight and don’t feel guilty. I know I won’t!