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Hot Mess Mom » Dear Diary, Family, Featured, Ramblings, Ways I know I'm failing as a parent » Why being a bad “parent” makes me a good “mom”

Why being a bad “parent” makes me a good “mom”


Admittedly, I’m never going to be in the running for Parent of the Year.  Never, ever, EVER going to happen.  Ever.  {ever}

Sometimes my house is a mess.  Sometimes I forget to pay the bills and services get disconnected. Sometimes my kids come home from school to a messy house without power.  Or cable.  Or without power AND cable.

Sometimes, when my kids beg to sleep in or play hooky, I let them.

Sometimes I feed them bushels of fruits and veggies.

Sometimes I feed them processed foods.

Sometimes I even feed them GMO’s.

Sometimes I don’t register them for sports in time and they don’t get on the “right” team.

Sometimes I don’t register them for sports at all because the game/ practice schedules are conflicting with our vacation plans.

Sometimes I wake up early and make them a nice, healthy, well-balanced breakfast.

Sometimes I tell them to make their own frozen breakfast sandwich in the microwave- powered on HIGH for extra radiation exposure.

Sometimes I yell at them.  Sometimes I laugh at them.  I always laugh with them.

I do a lot of bad-parenting things.  As my boys get older and become closer and closer to being “real people”, I am learning that most of my bad-parenting moments and decisions are the exact things that make me a good MOM.  Not a mother, not a friend.. just a mom.

“Tell us more, HMM..  exactly how “bad” can you be before you’re “good?”

Well.. I’m going with “pretty bad”.

I have always cursed in front of my children.  Never “AT” my kids.. but around them.  So much power is given to words, especially the bad ones.  By using those words in daily conversation, we have taken the power away.  My friends used to laugh so hard when my kids were little.  You could drop an F*bomb around my kids and nary a head would turn.  However, use the words “stupid” or “shut up” or “Idiot” and three little heads would turn, glare, and advise “that’s a bad word!” or “that’s a MEAN word”.

In our home, we don’t curse out of anger.  We don’t name call.  We do, however, inquire “What the fuck?” about a dozen times a day.  We eat pizza that is “so damned good”.  We drop things or spill things or break things and mutter “Son of a bitch” or “Well, shit”.   Sometimes, if we have a big disaster, we might even say “Well, that’s a huge fucking mess”.

In our home, we laugh.  We laugh at all sorts of things, but we laugh the hardest at all things inappropriate.    Which leads me to, what is admittedly, my WORST parenting trait:  our movie choices.

I’m not proud of this.. I’m really not.  Never in a million years did I think I would allow my children to watch the movies that have snuck into our viewing queue.  But they have.  And I do.

While I don’t allow violence or gratuitous sex for their viewing pleasure, I do allow an unacceptable amount of language and innuendo.   So, basically, I allow Will Ferrell. And also Melissa McCarthy. And maybe a little Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, and Vince Vaughn.  But that’s it.  Okay, maybe Paul Rudd.  And occasionally Seth Rogan.  And honestly, I watch some of these movies with my kids and cringe the entire time… but to see them laugh together… laugh so hard… share laughter that is a mixture of shock, humor and embarrassment… share that laughter with their brothers…share that laughter with me….  it’s cringe worthy… and it’s worth it.

I love that my boys quote funny movies.  I love that they are snarky.  I love that when my shoulders hurt from packing boxes, one of them will innocently say “Hey Mom, you know what’s good for shoulder pain?”


They think it’s hilarious when I’m running around and they ask me where I’m going and I reply with “I’m going to put my nutsack on your drum set”


I about pee’d myself when I heard one of them yell during a neighborhood game of Dodgeball “If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball”.


It’s the highest compliment to me that all three of my children occasionally (okay, more than occasionally) refer to me as “Mullins”.



A good parent would never allow a child under the age of 17 to watch a rated R movie. A good parent would make sure that his/her children had perfect school attendance, ate 432 servings of vegetables a day, got regular exercise and never had more than 30 minutes of screen time.   A good parent would ALWAYS know exactly where their children were and what they were doing.

A good parent doesn’t forget to pay the bills, doesn’t run out of bandaids, and doesn’t order pizza 3 nights in a row.

A good parent makes breakfast, lunch and dinner for their family.

A good parent would make sure that all academic and athletic obligations were met and expectations achieved before taking a break or an unapproved trip.

I am not a good parent.

My kids miss a lot of Fridays.  And some Mondays.  They only get 2-3 servings of vegetables a day.  They do get a lot of exercise because they are banned from being “inside” unless it’s dark or raining.  I have a general idea where they are (“in the neighborhood”) and what they are doing (“being kids”) but more often than not, I do the “front yard yell” when it’s time to come home.

My kids roll their eyes at me when I forget to pay the bills.  They use a wet paper towel to wipe off a bloody knee.   They know exactly how much money to tip the pizza delivery man.

My kids have a choice every morning.  I will either make their breakfast or pack their lunch.  They are responsible for the other.  And after dinner, my poor kids have to clean up after themselves, and still later, they have to come back and unload the dishwasher.  As a team.

I barter with my kids at the beginning  of every extracurricular season.  I show them the calendar, we discuss the potential mini-vacations and weekends away that occur during the upcoming season.  Then, we decide as a group if we register for {insert activity here} or if we travel.  Sometimes I win {travel, obviously}, sometimes they do.  A good parent would not need to consult children about the family calendar.

I am not a good parent.

A good parent wouldn’t play cards with their kids for fear it would wake a slumbering gambling addict.  A good parent wouldn’t drink alcohol  in front of their kids for fear it would promote alcoholism.  A good parent wouldn’t let the kids stay up past bedtime just to watch the next person get hurt on Wipe-Out or watch one more clip on America’s Funniest Videos.  A good parent would never let a middle-schooler miss not one, but TWO days of school and tests to spend a long weekend in New York City celebrating their 13th birthday.  And a good parent would definitely not share every detail of their family life with complete strangers on the internet.  A good parent would have better sense than that.

I am not a good parent.

But I’ll be damned if I’m not a good mom.


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Filed under: Dear Diary, Family, Featured, Ramblings, Ways I know I'm failing as a parent



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123 Responses to "Why being a bad “parent” makes me a good “mom”"

  1. Julie W says:

    Welp, by that yardstick, I SUCK at being a parent, but I rock the shit out of being a mom! Anyone thinks of whining about being bored? Do XYZ chore or get the fuck outta my house and PLAY. Yes, they have chores. Yes, I sit on my ass and WATCH while they do those chores. Why else did I have kids if not for slave labor and entertainment?

    My husband is a firefighter and former military man, and I’m a medic. We have dirty potty mouths. The kids obviously pick up on that. It happens. Although, when my 7-year old screamed ‘What the FUCK G?!’ at his baby brother yesterday during drop-off at school, I confess to going a bit ape-shit. It’s one thing to drop a bomb at home, among sympathizers and fellow bomb-droppers, but child please, PLEASE, don’t drop a bomb in the kiss-n-ride line at the elementary school!

    1. Jessie says:

      I can so relate to you. My kids told me i needed to pay them for chores. I told them when they live here and mess it up they aint getting shit but a clean house and good cooked meal and they needed to be thankful for what they got. lol

    2. Melissa says:

      You are freaking awesome !! I thought I was the only bad parent in this world !!!!

  2. Amanda says:

    Love it! Our boys watch those movies too, no judgement here! You’re a great mom!

  3. Shannin says:

    Yesssss…..I am not a good mom either. And I’m perfectly happy with how my kids are turning out. Having a tattoo artist and a religious nut along with an ADD teenager makes for a wonderful life. F’ the ones who just don’t get it.

  4. Elizabeth says:

    I love your blog and facebook page! This is probably the best thing I have ever read in my life! I hope when my boy is older im as great a mom as I think you are!

  5. Lori says:

    I have to tell you, I smiled the entire time I read this. And I wiped a little tear from my eye at the end. Thank you for being a “great” mom!!

  6. Kayla says:

    I’ve been a long time reader. Bad parent has NEVER come to my mind. Hot mess parent? Yes. But NEVER bad. You remind me much of my own mom. Do things your way and keep kicking ass while doing it

  7. Jessie says:

    Oh my gosh. I laughed so damn hard at this. But if you are a bad mom i’m a horrible mother. I let them watch alot of things but mostly it’s monitored.. Except for the one day i walk in to the computer room and i see my kids laughing their asses off by watching you tube vids of ” Yo Mamma” Jokes. I put a stop to it and then next thing i know we are at my mothers house and they start cracking jokes. But when my 4 year old told his grand father that his mamma was so hairy when she gave birth he had carpet burn. (FacePalm) I know i was being a bad mom. I love your post and site.

  8. Sylvia Harritt says:

    You are AMAZING!!!! I’ve been a mom forever. I’m 37, my oldest is almost 20. I’ve NEVER fit in with the “other” moms. Too often they walk into a room, look right at me and find someone else to speak with. Meh. Whatever. I am NOT a good parent, BUT I am a GREAT mom. It shows in the notes my middle son writes me when I’m sick and he signs it best regards. It shows in the courage my oldest son has when he had to testify before the DA, that his father attacked him. It shows in the tenderness of my youngest son who chooses to take a jewelry making class instead of sports training as opposed to his older brothers. It also shows in my daughter who’s a sophomore in college and kicking butt in her evert day life. Thank you for your encouragement. Thank you for showing me that it’s ok to not be perfect. Your inspiring!!!

    1. The Urban Wowman says:

      Wow Sylvia your post is very touching.

  9. D'Anna says:

    Excellent! Keep up the good work!

  10. darla bell says:

    Every damn thing you said is fine. We raise our kids as moms. I don’t need to be mother. Laughtet is a sighn your children are happy. A house that’s to clean means you are losing that homey comfort. My kids are all grown up, and I’m helping raise the youngest grandaughter. I stopped even getting up with my kids in jr. High. Hence the fighting stopped and they learned to be responsible. You keep on keeping on girlie. Tactiv. 😉

  11. Amy says:

    This post is amazing!! my son is still small so im still in the beginning stages of raising him but honestly i feel like alot of what you said..will be me. i might be uptight sometimes when he does things but he is only 2 and i worry about everything he does haha. but at the same time i know when he gets older he is going to be a rowdy boy and i cant be so uptight about it. thank you for this. this is amazing. i love seeing your posts on fb and i will continue to read your posts on here!

  12. Amy says:

    I love that you are a Mom just like me- we keep it real and have fun with our kids but we also hold them accountable for chores and such. I look forward to your blog posts and hope to hear all your fun and real stories from now on! Thanks again!

  13. Leslie says:

    First, I hate crying so thanks. (that’s a compliment btw). This really hit home for me, since this is pretty much how it is in my house. I spend too much time worrying about whether I am a bad parent or not, and what other parents will think of me. Well fuck it, I guess I am a bad parent, but I’m a great Mom and always plan to be! I have always said I’m raising human beings, not robots. Thank you for this!

  14. Shannon says:

    Love this! I’m not as “bad” as you are but I’m a bad parent too! Thanks so much for sharing & making me feel more normal.

  15. Carley says:

    LOL!!! I can not wait till my children are old enough to watch funny movies with, they are only 4 and 10 months now. I love that they call you Mullins!! This was a great read. Thank you for making me and probably most of your readers feel normal! It is impossible to live up to the expectations some have of what a “mom” actually should be doing.

  16. Moira McKeever says:

    You’re not a GOOD mom, you’re a GREAT mom!

    I’ve raised 3 children – 24, 21 and 18…and we live much like you do. In a nutshell – we never sweat the small stuff. Yes, my power has been turned off, as has my water…we lived! …we turned the power out night into a fun family outing/dinner since I wasn’t able to cook – (damn it!) 😉

    We are giving our kids the gift of learning about real life. That perfection isn’t necessary, that mistakes are made and we move on, that above all we are loved. Happiness is more important than perfect attendance. A hooky day is something even I look forward to…why shouldn’t they?
    Because I am real with them, they don’t ever have to lie to me. In fact, I have lost count how many times their friends have confided in me, things they didn’t feel comfortable telling their own parents. Things these parents SHOULD have known, felt, experienced. First loves, first broken hearts, first missed period (false alarm) :).

    Keep doing what you’re doing — Thank GOD for Mom’s like us — or this world would be filled with more out of touch, narcissistic, one-uppers than we already have! PFFFFFFT! 😛

  17. Kathleen says:

    Oh my dear Gods, I am laughing SO hard. This is our house – messy, crazy and just damn fun. We’re four crazy guys (hubby, housemate, two sons) and “Da Mom” over here. We have our bad moments, but man, they are outweighed by the good. We have all the insanity you mentioned too! We talk to our boys straight, even hauling out Mom’s anatomy book from college when we have to. Good grief, laughing at this felt so damn good.

  18. Renee says:

    My inner voice often reprimands me for my parenting style or as some would say my lack there of. I am a full time working mother with 3 children, there is a 9 year gap between my oldest and my middle child. I often find myself too tired to the perfect pinterest crafty, SAHM, home schooling, PTA attending, perfectly dressed, mother that social media has now shoved down our throats. I often wake up 30 minutes after the alarm and fire drill them out of the house, those mornings they get a cold pop tart and whatever drink has a cap. After driving 35 minutes with snowbirds and spring break traffic I want to stab someone and most certainly do not feel like cooking, cereal anyone? It is refreshing to read your FB posts and this blog and know that being a hot mess is perfectly acceptable and that I am not alone.

  19. Claire says:

    I’m a horrible parent, too! Glad to know I’m in such good company! We swear, but don’t tolerate “shut up” or “you’re stupid”. I’ve been known to serve microwave popcorn & break-apart chocolate chip cookies (hey it’s HOME COOKED!!) for dinner. That has won me the “you’re the best mom ever!!” prize. Both of my kids have highly developed senses of humor, partially from good genes and partially from our cinematic choices on movie nights. They also know that not everyone they encounter in life is going to like them, that they’re not going to get a medal just for showing up, & that hard work goes a long way towards getting them where they want to go in life.

  20. T. Moore says:

    Im guilty of 99.9999999% of the exact same stuff. The “my life is a picture perfect fairy tale on social media” people need to be bitch slapped with a brick! I love your page and get a good laugh from it everyday!! Keep it up because it’s refreshing to read about a woman, mother, and wife being honest about the reality of our REAL daily lives!! 🙂 no sugar coating shit, it is what is and I for one LOVE IT!!

  21. Theresa says:

    I think you are a wonderful MOM!! Any memories that include hard belly laughter with your children is a total parenting WIN… We believe in making memories in this house, they go with you forever, don’t break, don’t go out of style, don’t get lost (well until we’ve all lost our minds!!).

    Continue doing it your way, your kids have an awesome life and their silly antics and crass comebacks are the things “real” families are made of!!
    You are all blessed to be the family you have chosen to be….

  22. Becca says:

    I guess I’m not a “good parent” either but I’m one hell of a great mom!! Thanks for sharing your life with us. I knew I was on the right track when my 13 offered to Carry our back pack all day at Disney and my girls only spent 30$ of their 100 bucks cash we allowed them to spend. And I’m a sailor mouthed hot mess of a momma! I think parenting is more about being real and teaching your kids to be good people to be kind and work as a team with in a family instead of hVing a stick up your ass bout being “perfect”

  23. Loved this! Proud to know you! Let’s get the kids together for a play date soon so we can ban them to the yard, drink before 5, and be good moms together! 😉

  24. Kros says:

    I, for many years, have carried much guilt not being able to effectively micromanage EVERY detail of my children’s lives. Then I realized where I fell short (or at least in my mind at the time) things happened just as they should have. I started to question just how are my kids going to grow with me trying to make everything perfect for them? My conclusion: imperfect is perfect!
    Love your page! Love the blog! And… your imperfect perfections are awesome in my opinion!

  25. Barbi says:

    I do not have words for how much i love this

  26. Peggy says:

    Sounds just right to me!! I’ve raised twin girls who now are 20…they don’t strive to be perfect…just to be themselves…which ironically is perfect to me. My one regret is not giving up on the perfect parent idea sooner…but twin 2 year olds shows you how quickly.

  27. Heather says:

    How awesome (and funny) this was to read. I truly needed to hear it in a time I am being told different you remind me I’m a great MOM. I may not be that perfect parent, but I am a great mom. That’s all that really matters. Thank you so much. 🙂

  28. Danielle says:

    I love this! I, too, am a bad parent, but a pretty damn good mom! I love what you said about bad words having power, and the use of them in normal daily language removes that power. We do that in my house too, and she’s old and smart enough to know when it is not appropriate. Mean words are, however, totally unacceptable! I feel the same way about those movies, and a number of tv shows. By the time they hit middle school (and sometimes sooner), they know these things anyway – why make it taboo, and give it power! Most of them are ridiculously funny, and laughter is good. As for making them make their own breakfast or lunch – they NEED to know how to do things for themselves! If a parent does everything for a kid all the time, how will that kid ever learn to take care of themselves? Isn’t it our job to prepare these small people to be adults?? I think that being open with your kids – so that they see the good and the bad – helps them to realize that it’s okay to be an imperfect being….and that’s an important lesson! Thank you for this!

  29. Abigail says:

    I can’t begin to tell you what a relief it is to read your FB post, and blog! I think as MOMs we get pretty intimidated and self conscious about our skills; I always fear the big secret that I suck will be exposed. Through your blog, and other “Mom blogs” I can regained some perspective on what is expected and what is realistic. I work full time, and would rather spend the 2-4 hours at night playing and talking to my 2yr old and 5yr old. I’d rather get to know them, and for them to get to know me. I hope every family is crazy, otherwise how boring would that be if it wasn’t!

  30. Brenna Dugan says:

    I have to say this is ‘insperational’…I am a relatively new mother, a 13 month old and a 1 month old. I can only hope that I am able to parent the same way. I already feel that I am part way there and at the end of the day it doesn’t matter how your child became and amazing person and a productive member of society all that matters is that they had a great time getting there and so did you. These are memories that they will have forever!

    1. Laura says:

      Well said, from a mommy of a 6 month old!

  31. Laura says:

    Sometimes parents spend so much time protecting their kids from the real world that they don’t learn how to live in it. R rated movies and cussing are in our culture, they are not going away. Kids need to learn to make their own decisions and to adapt to the world around them. There is nothing wrong with the way you parent. Your kids know that you love them unconditionally and that is the most important thing you can teach them.

  32. Annmarie says:

    Great posts!!! And those are all the reasons why your boys will always have a close relationship with you…..voluntarily!!

  33. Laura says:

    While none of us are perfect I would rather be like you than overachiever parents. Life is too short and it seems you have instilled this in your children. You are making memories as a family and that is the most important! Your children will grow up to be well adjusted young men that value LIFE. They will not freak out when something bad happens, but improvise. That is a trait too many children lack these days. I enjoy reading about your adventures and find it refreshing that you are Hot Mess Mom! Keep doing what you are doing! Cheers!

  34. Cecy says:

    I’m 40 and have 4 kids two are grown 18 & 21 our first set we did everything wrong due to being young parents but my kids turned out just fine. Our second set we call our do-over 6 & 4 and guess what still doing shit wrong due to being older, wiser and just damn tired! But my husband and I are great parents our kids know there is no one in this world who loves them more than we do. Yeah we screw up all the time as parents and will continue to do so because these kids don’t come with manuals and if they did we’d find a way to screw it up. Keep doing what you do I love reading about your messy life it reminds me of me!

    1. Leslie says:

      Hello Cecy. Your comment made me think about something that, I think, as parents we forget. We are also human beings. I said in my comment that I’m raising human beings, not robots. It just so happens we are human too and we WILL screw up A LOT! That’s the nature of things. We can’t grow said humans if we’re acting like robots ourselves!

  35. Lisa says:

    You are an awesome mom!!!!!!!

  36. Jenn Park says:

    Are we long lost sisters?! You’re so awesome. I appreciate your honesty.

  37. Nat says:

    I always thought I was a bad mother too…as a single mom who allowed her little one watch every horror movie that ever came out. We would get so excited when a new one was coming out. First, just let me say, I explained that all the blood and gore that we saw was made of either chocolate and/or jelly and that none of it was real. There really is no man with knives for fingers and no one was going to come in to his dreams at night and kill him.

    It became so much fun for us to find the silliness in the movies but still get all bundled up together and gasp when the bad guy popped around a corner and slaughtered all the dumb campers…lol

    I remember picking him up one day from his daycare and one of the teachers coming out to ask me what I was allowing my child to watch! I guess he had been explaining one of our movies in detail to some of the other kids…. I could have crawled under a desk.

    Today he is off living on his own and still he calls me when he finds a good horror movie and I watch it and the we can review all the gory details….together.

    I miss those old days but I love our chats today even more…we will always have that bond.

  38. Rachel says:

    Love this! I’m a 30 yr. old stay at home mom of 3( 7,3,1). My husband works 12 hour shifts and sometimes I go a little crazy. Your posts keep me laughing(along with the crumb diaries!). This couldn’t have been written any better, awesome job! 🙂

  39. Tina says:

    Hilarious! But, so true. My “guilt” of being a bad patent but, a good MOM has been lifted. When my children were young, I strived to be the best parent I could be. I find myself stressed, frequently aggravated and not enjoying my children nearly as much as I knew I should. In the midst of a school project that involved paper-mache, my 3 boys (then 9, 10 and 12 erupted into an all out paper-mache WAR because someone got goop on someone else. My perfect plastic covered table, clean floors and tidy children were an immediate disaster! As I tried to control the situation, I erupted into crying laughter as they have each other goop wedgies, hair spikes and chased each other doing “5-star” prints on each other’s bodies. Never had I laughed so hard at or with my children before that day! It was the beginning of many! We’ve had numerous food fights, chased each other throwing rolls of toilet paper and any number of things I can’t remember, always ending in stomach clenching laughter. Most other parents think I’ve lost my mind, most teenagers think our house is the best place to be and me? I love every minute! In our home, my children speak their minds freely, are honest to a fault and are most of all, happy, well adjusted young men. Their behavior in public is definitely not of the heathen type. Yep, things have been shut off because there’s too much life, not enough of me. I fully subscribe to Phyllis Diller’s opinion of “cleaning your house before your children stop growing is like shoveling the wall before it stops snowing.” Occasionally, my kids remind me that grocery shopping and cooking are still a “thing”. At the end of the day, everything gets turned back on, there’s always something to eat even if, gasp, it’s not microwaveable, though they miss too much school, they pass in the end, the dishes will be there when we get back from whatever we’re doing, wrinkles can be sprayed out of non-folded laundry and above all else, my house is a home. I’ll take being a damn good MOM over a great parent anytime! Thank you, HMM, for helping me see that my “failures” are also my successes!

  40. Kendra says:

    As I read all of the perfect mom post from facebook, I’m thrilled to read this. Thank goodness I’m a great mom and not a perfect parent. Those people who portray their perfect patenting skills on fb tire me out and drive me crazy! I believe that my kid is only young once and should enjoy life. Yes he needs discipline and education, but the things I hope he remembers are the things I can’t buy… Mom things. Thank you HMM for sharing what a terrible parent you are, but what being a great mom is all about! Keep the fun coming.

  41. Tina says:

    Ugh! So many typo’s. Damn posting from my phone! 🙂

  42. Chastity says:

    I LOVE IT!!!!!

  43. Tanya says:

    Hallelujah ! The worlds need more moms like you. I don’t consider myself a good parent either. My kids have heard ever curse word there is. They don’t swear and just laugh at me. When my 8th grade step son called a girl in his class a whore he saw heard the wrath of God come out of my mouth. Pretty sure he peed his pants. He realized that day that there are worse words than fuck and if I find out you have used them to someone’s face or with your buddies as a joke there will be hell to pay.
    We watch inappropriate movies. Sometimes I think this was bad… Worse than I remembered but we teach our kids from it. My daughter learned about rape when she was 7. Probably not the ideal age but now she knows and at 10 there she isn’t afraid to ask questions. And that world is full of sick and twisted people. Be careful but also be kind.
    And to all the perfect parents out there, please stop self proclaiming your wonderful actions on Facebook the bumper of your car and everywhere else! No one gives a shit they are just being nice when they really want to tell you to shut up already !

  44. Heather says:

    Thank you for making my day! I thought I was a terrible mom and that I was the only one that does the things you mentioned. I sometimes wish my son would remember his school work as well as well as he does funny phrases in movies, I woke him for school the other day, he pretended to be dreaming looked at me and said “the clown has no penis”….sure you heard that one. It was better wake me up than coffee. I too am a bad parent but thanks for showing me I’m a kick-ass mom!

  45. Nikiah says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only “bad parent” that lets her children watch R rated movies. My son is 9 a LOVES Adam Sandler and grown ups and grown ups 2 is a regular in my house. I cuss a LOT, I yell, I clean almost daily but there are days I play video games and things instead. They are only kids once and that’s plenty for me!

  46. Valerie says:

    Omg. I fucking loved this. I think half the moms in the world are guilty of most the thing you said were “bad” here but are just to damned “good” to admit it. Keep being a bad parent and an awesome mom!

  47. Sonya says:

    You Rock!!

    Thank you for putting into words what so many of us feel. I would rather be a great Mom and have the relationship I do with my kids – mess and all, than to be a perfect parent. It looks good from the outside but there’s nothing behind it.

  48. Tammy says:

    I parent just like you and I tell nah-sayers to kiss my ass. They are my kids and life is short!! We WILL have fun no matter what! Good for you. Good for me. Good for our kids!!!

  49. kim says:


  50. Patty Lou Greshuk says:

    You are my kind of MOM!

    I have always strived for the same kind of life with my girls as you have with your boys, only I don’t articulate it as well as you! They turned out not to bad. They lived, went on to higher education, and are still the light in my eyes!

    Kudos to you, your children and Seven! What wonderful men you will have, and lucky is the girl to become part if your family someday!!!!

  51. dar says:

    Ay I was a bad parent too. I did all the things you do, and now have two amazing women I raised. They are both responsible, caring women. Now I’m a bad granma !yay !

  52. Kat Grayson says:

    I’m a new mom. My son is just about 6 months old and I am so glad I read this today. Your blog epitomizes the way I was raised. My parents spoke to me like I was an adult and raised me in a walk-it-off, banished-to-the-outdoors,but-be-home-before-the-street-lights-come-in household. I plan on doing the same. I have never felt so judged in my entire life, until I became a parent. Your blog defiantly makes me feel like I’m not the only one who’s not cool with raising a whiny ass kid that can’t function in society. Thank you!

  53. Stephanie says:

    Love it.

  54. Sue Best says:

    Best article about parenting I’ve ever read 🙂

  55. Renee says:

    LOVE every word of it! Your doing great so keep up the awesome work! :-):-)

  56. Sandy Graham says:

    We never know how our kids will turn out until they grow up, therefore there’s no way of telling whether or not we are “good” parents while we are parenting. My parenting was a lot like yours, and my kids turned out great. Killer sense of humor (usually at my expense 🙂 a sometimes moderate and sometimes immoderate intake of alcohol (and they laugh at me when I get drunk), and potty mouths that I am extremely proud of. My kids are two of my best friends, and I attribute that to not being a tight ass when they were kids, and not being over-involved while they were learning to be adults. Not only do I love your parenting tales, I love your unapologetic “fuck you” to the sancti-moms who tell you you’re doing it wrong. Live long and prosper, HMM. I’ll be watching to see your boys grow up into amazing men.

  57. Kelly says:

    We seriously could be twins!

  58. Amy says:

    You just about described me to a T! I love it!

  59. Ruffslitch says:

    Oh, Laws, Ah’m laughin’! When son-san was two-ish and riding in the shopping cart at-where else? -Wal-mart, a lady dropped a gallon of milk which splattered everywhere. My wee innocent piped up with his baby lisp and said “Oh, thit!”

  60. T says:

    I love your Facebook page and blog. You are a great mom and an inspiration to many parents. Keep up the great work.

  61. Amy H says:

    I would have to say that I’m a horrible parent then, but an awesome mom!

  62. Gail says:

    I just love love love your page!!! blogs, fb updates etc–You see I was a HMM and now I consider myself a Hot Mess Grandma!!! Kids turned out fine and grandkids even more fun!!

  63. Tiffany says:

    You ARE a damned good mom, im a little envious.

  64. Seriously, are you sure we weren’t separated at birth?… Once again you rock 😉

  65. Adriane says:

    Yay!I’m a bad parent! My rules are don’t be a butthead or a bully, use your brain/common sense, don’t cuss in front of Mimi. Game on!

  66. Marty Bird says:

    You make me laugh – thank you!

  67. Leticia says:

    Your blog has made me aware that I am NOT alone in being a “bad parent” 🙂 Two years ago I became a single working mother of my 2 teenagers and working 60 to 70 hours a week. Often times my kids have had to get the lunch for those kids have huge lunch money deficits because I’ve either forgotten or there was no money.I have especially felt guilty 4 a lot of forgetting. It is so nice to know that other people share your luck but also the same sensibility on how we raise our kids. I too can make a sailor blush with my language but I have always been who I have been and my kids were raised around it because I believed if you made a big deal out of it they would want to do it even more. I believe because of our relaxed atmosphere we’re closer as a family my daughter shares a lot of things with me that other girls would not share with their own parents. We laugh a lot, we share a lot, & I have always been upfront and honest with my children. Even though I am a teacher, around my neighborhood some people look upon on me as white trash because my son doesn’t always go out to play. In cold weather he’s 13 and I can’t make him wear a coat. My daughter first had sex with her boyfriend at 15 and she is almost 17 and they’re still together. She has great communication with your boyfriend and his parents and I would like to believe that is because I’ve always insisted on hashing things out until its resolved. Sometimes my kids are in need of new clothes or underwear and socks and it has to wait. But you know what? We are all extremely happy smart asses. We joke and we play and we laugh. I knew we were destined 2 all go to hell in a handbasket after picking up my son at 2 years old from the babysitter and finding him in timeout. My son had told his babysitter’s husband “fuck you”.

  68. Sloane says:

    I was a single working mom. I would come home at night and play and read with my daughter WAY past what was considered an acceptable bedtime. WHO GIVES A FUCK? She’s 26 now, lives in NYC and the one thing that she misses the most, is our late night talks, sitting on the bed watching a bad, bad movie. Thank God, I wasn’t a good parent, either!!

  69. kv says:

    sounds to me like a happy,healthy home. like mine was!

  70. Laurie says:

    You make this cop MOM feel great with every big you post! Hubby is retired PD too so our home has always been a bit different. Our family saying is “different isn’t synonymous with bad!” Keep being a MOM everyone! The world needs more moms!!!!

  71. Heather Holter says:

    I agree with all of what you said except missing school. I need them at school,and I don’t want to help with the makeup work. Homework sucks enough as it is! LOL

  72. Cyndia says:

    Holy shit that was good.
    I laughed my ass off.
    You keep doing what works for you.
    I don’t remember getting the rule book on
    Good parenting and my monkeys turned out just fine.

  73. Tinalea Hamilton says:

    LOVE this post! 🙂

  74. Dyani says:

    Love it! As a single parent to 5 kids ages 2-18yrs I fully admit we are a highly dysfunctional ‘normal’ family! My amazing and happy kids love to inform me what a mean Mom I am and attempt to convince any willing listener how I’m so abusive and mean. Unfortunately for them they smile the entire time of telling. My favorite is my then 10yr old drama daughter who very convincingly performed a sob story to her dad (over the phone) and I about how mean I am and all the emotional scars I was creating by grounding her for a week and taking away her cell phone. She was so good in her act I almost felt bad. But did inform her that her dad was so concerned about how bad it was for her at our home he still hadn’t called or asked about the ‘horrible’ treatment she was receiving. It took until dinner time before I was “MOM” to her again 🙂
    Then again I love the “good” parents who stress over CPS being called on me when they hear how frankly the kids and I talk. My 2yr old is a CPS placement and he is Thriving in our ‘abusive’ dysfunctional home!

  75. Heidi says:

    Well you and I are both dam great mom’s….

  76. Jamie Cogan says:

    You are not a good parent, you are an AWESOME PARENT. Our kids will grow up to real, fun, and not have a permanent stick up their asses. My kids hear cuss words, watch rated R movies, and eat way too much shit. But they are good and caring human beings with great senses of humor. Win. Thank you for validating the rest of us “bad parents”!

  77. erica says:

    You far outshine me. I would rather stick a fork in my eye than attend a pta meeting. We don’t “do” the sensitive “omg johnny you fell” stuff..we do the “f-methat was it again”version. My kids are more free range and helicoptered and am ok with that. Teaches them how to be their own person, self responsibility and character. I figure if we all survive and i don’t end up with a fire starter or socipath we are doing ok (all clear so They are told they are loved every day…they just aren’t coddled to the point they don’t trust themselves or their choices.

    1. Patty says:

      Abso-fucking-lutely agree with you!

  78. Michelle says:

    – ha, I have four sons and you just validated our lives exactly!

  79. Patty says:

    Ditto to ALL of that!!! Love your posts!!!

  80. Jessica says:

    This made my day! I do a majority of that as well, my family is always
    Ragging on me about how I raise my kids, everybody has an opinion though
    Right? I have a 3 month old son and his first week of life he watched porn with his
    Uncle (flipping through other channels may I add) I thought it was hilarious, no
    Harm done right? He was just a week old, but I’m still not hearing the end of it from
    A few people…. I love your confidence!

  81. Lisa Eliason says:

    You ROCK, nuff’ said!!

  82. Deanna says:

    You are my idol. That is all.

  83. Rita Walden says:

    Ur my idol. Makes me feel good to think Ima a good MOM too. Terrible parent, but indeed a good mom. Proof is mine have grown and all r not dysfunctional as some would have imagined when they were lil. Love the fact u tell it like it really Is in life, things most people would not admit to. My oldest son scolds me for being the same now in front of his children as I was when he was young growing up, I look at him and laugh and say why change now yall turned out just fine and great Parents :). Love it and glad I came visited ur page. Ima enjoy ur posts on FB even more. Cheers!

  84. Pria says:

    I lobe your style because I’m also sometimes like that.Semi-bad semi good 🙂 A combination of both makes you the best:)

  85. Kelly says:

    Single mom of three boys- 20, 13 and 7. I’ve always cursed around them but they NEVER drop a curse word…said it’s outta respect. But Cracked up when the little one said Shit and freaked out. We watch real life movies as well. Bills may or may not get paid. Meals can go from homemade to frozen to make whatever you want even if it’s a bowl of ice cream! I love seeing your posts and so many others who are like me. We love REAL lives!!!! Love it!!!!!

  86. Ila Kasper says:

    That time my son was dangling from the a 2nd story window while I plunged the downstairs toilet… Or used my curtains to climb the wall… Or went bungee jumping from the mini blinds all make me feel like a crappy parent… But as a mom… I’m damn good! Motherhood isn’t perfect! ( special needs and autism add an interesting dynamic) but it works! Imperfectly perfect parenting… Done in the real world. Thanks for telling it how you see it! I’m off to clean the “snow” off my 5 year olds floor. It can snow inside my house even if it’s 80 degrees outside!

  87. Kim says:

    I just love you so much for writing this piece of parenting GOLD, Sista! Don’t you go changin’!

  88. Amethyst says:

    Reading this gives me hope. I sometimes question myself as a mother. Now I know, I am a damn good mom. Thank you! Keep on rocking!

  89. Rachel says:

    I’m not even a parent, but in my opinion a well raised child is a happy and productive child. So what if mistakes are made.

  90. Sydney says:

    How do you refrain from swearing at your kids?? I’m almost twenty years old, and my mother has sworn AT and AROUND me for the entirety of my existence.

  91. Jacki says:

    Being a parent this day in age is probably the hardest job I will ever have had.
    Tonight I am thankful that I’m not the “only” bad parent out there:)
    Cheers to “bad” moms!’ Lol

  92. Ferine says:

    One of the best moms! That’s you. =)

  93. Quia says:

    This is one of your best posts! I love it, you rock!

  94. Mayrelis says:

    I must say that i have loved you and your facebook page since I started following you. But reading this blog has made me love you even more. You have just made me feel sooo much better about myself as a mother. I soooo relate to you and your family. I have been judged so much in the past for my “parenting” that in many occations I was questioned if im doing a good job at all with my children. But I have three happy kids that thru all of our struggles, stand by my side and have an amazing relationship and communication with me. Thank you for all you do. You are great!

  95. Sue says:

    You are todays modern day hero! Thanks for letting us “Bad Moms” become “Good Moms”! I hate good moms. they frustrate me to my wits end! I will not keep up to the “Jonses”.. I will raise my kids the way I want to raise them! I have 4 kids.. from 27 down to 8 years old. All of them are happy, fed, clothed, educated and little assholes when they want to be. We swear in this house, we yell in this house and we even slam doors occasionally, but in the end we love each other and that’s all that matters! They’re not fricking robots! They don’t adhere to strict schedules and deadlines. They skip outta school to go on roadtrips with their dad, or just hang out at home and have jammy days with me. They are MY kids… and there’s no way in hell I will raise them in a way that jeopardizes their personalities just to satisfy the on-lookers! I may not be a “good” mom, but I am a great mom!

    1. Jenni Wiggins says:

      Amen to that! I’m so excited about finding this site! I feel sooooo much better knowing that I am not alone in this world. I have fellow mothers, moms, mamas (it’s a southern thing), to relate to and who understand that being perfect isn’t required to have great kids. I am far from perfect and frankly, these perfect mom’s make me want to freaking puke! I will stick with my kindred spirits who RAISE their children, they don’t follow the latest parenting trend is at the time. I GIVE MY KIDS SUGAR AND CAFFEINE! I love this site and all of the moms and mamas out there just like me! I am, no doubt a “hit mess mom”!!

  96. HEATHER LYNN says:

    I’m new to your page and I’m hooked. As a 42 yr old Mom of 4 kids, ages 20 g, 16b, 12b, and 11g, I’m far removed age-wise from the other mothers in my 2 younger kids’ classes,have no aspirations to advance in Supermom ranks,and pretty much have little patience with carefully tactful conversation. I watch their politically correct, micro managing, happy-fuzzy cooing, affirmation-cramming(“You are a special, unique, WONDERFUL person!”) selves and am thankful my kids know reality. I have watched as a child visitor proceeded to bully my oldest, hoard her toys and thrash my house, just to be rewarded with a drippingly sweet voiced and thoroughly ignored (by her child) PTA poster child say, “Isaac,” (or whatever the hell she named her heathen), “look at me. Was that right that you took her toy? Can you say you’re sorry?” Well, fuk yeah, he can (but didn’t) he’s 7! and he can also pick up the shit he threw around my house,stay the HELL away from my dog, not touch my cat even ONE MORE FUCKING TIME, or I’ll let her tear you up, and then get the hell out, and take his indulging, ego protecting, uber Mommy with him.
    Breakfast at my house is sometimes cheese sticks, sometimes ice cream, sometimes a wild kingdom style foray into the black holes of the cabinets. Horror movies are my 12 yr old son’s weakness, as well as my 11 yr old girl’s, but for polar opposite reasons. He gets to occasionally dominate the TV and the zombies on it, and my girl can watch, get nightmares, and be teased the next day by us, or find a different activity to do til it’s over. Potato chips CAN be dinner…just squint and tilt your head to the left….
    “What the fuck!?” and, “Oh for fuck’s sake!” is on par with “what time is it?” and, “you got yer jacket?” And the golden “SO HELP ME GOD…!!,” should be honored.
    I don’t attend every field trip, after school activity, parent teacher assembly, and refuse to drag my kids to torture neighbors with never ending fundraisers, selling cookie dough. I cut BOX tops if I remember to, usually find them after they’ve expired, don’t check backpacks, and rarely help with homework. After school recreation involves being thrown outside, and figuring out something to do, or I’ll FIND them something. They agree at that point that my ideas suck, and I should just read a book or something. I don’t walk my daughter the 2 minute walk to school…it’s 2 freakin minutes for fuck’s sake!, but if it’s raining, the ride is on me sweets, and we’ll hit the market first for some Mentos.
    I AM ALLOWED AND HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE LEFT THE HELL ALONE, DAMMIT! And they graciously let Mom have her grown-up time out, because they like life so far, and I it’s in these moments they have seen me weak. They have seen me cry. Hurt. Be fallible. Be human. I fail sometimes, and it’s okay they see that. They know they aren’t, in the eyes of the world, “special, unique, wonderful.” They’re not even always that wonderful to me at times, when feral catfights break out, hairbrushes, DVD’s, hardback books and remotes go flying. But they know we can always pile together in a warm, awkward, smelly pre-teen body odor infused embrace, and they know they are loved, from the top of their combative heads, to the tips of their Dr. Scholl’s Odor Eater-filled Keds. I have been the Mom to camp in the tree house in the backyard for a solid week with them. Taken them camping for real and helped me cuss out the tarps I put up. Watched me turn my truck around and give my last can of Peace ice tea to a hitchhiker, cuz it was hella hot outside! And helped me, when we were pushing homeless potential ourselves, make over a dozen sack lunches about every other week or so for the houseless and hardened along Seattle’s 2nd/3rd Street’s, “Blade,” because it’s important to remember there’s always someone worse off, and we can all be just a few steps from their realities in the blink of an eye.
    And I refuse to raise (or allow!) my gorgeous (hell yeah they are! But I make sure to tell them how ugly they are often), loving, loyal little curtain climbers to hit adulthood with the huge, egotistical mental attitudes of ITS-ALL-THE-FUCK-ABOUT-ME ENTITLEMENT ISSUES that I see too often in children these days.
    I am a pathetic excuse for a mother. But I’m an awesome listener, a good problem solver, a pretty damn good cook if someone else does the dishes, can maintain each character’s English accent in all the Harry Potter books, a caring friend to others, a hard worker, a spot-on bullshit detector, yet a compassionate sucker for a pained pout, an animal lover, a talented miniaturist maker, a begrudgingly patient cross-stitching teacher, and a Daughter to another fallible, human, past-hurt woman who taught me that being real was a reward and freedom in itself. Because of her, finally, after 40, I’M A KICK ASS MOM! (Never touted being a fast learner.) 😉

  97. Sam says:

    Wow. This was a very refreshing read!!! I have three boys myself and have been a single mom for most of their lives. I have tried to be the perfectly organized, home-cooked meal, laundry always done, always on schedule mom. Yeah…between 3 boys and my own ADHD that does NOT work lol. I try not to yell (the little one is pretty sensitive) but I do have the mouth of a sailor (I try to keep it fairly tame, but it does slip out)! But I think my very honest, down-to-earth way of dealing with them has turned out well. I think it speaks volumes that my 12 year old son has no problem telling me all about the stuff they learn in sex-ed or making jokes about wet dreams. My mom was one of the good parent types so we didn’t talk about ANY of that stuff! It was private and embarrassing and shameful. Not in my way 🙂

  98. Deva says:

    I love, love, love this post! We have a ridiculous amount in common. And Sylvia, I am always that Mom too. Thank you HMM for making me realize that I’m not screwing this up so badly after all.

  99. Jenni Wiggins says:

    I have recently discovered your site and I have been laughing, crying, dancing, and singing your praises ever since. I so very thankful to know that I am not the only “bad parent” in the world! I am a damp good mama (it’s a southern thing), and I too am proud of the parenting that takes place in my home. I have 2 boys, ages 6 and 9. Both are about to have birthdays and there is a better than average chance that one of the two won’t have a party because of poor planning on my part. I toonly forget to pay bills, sign my kids up for whatever sport they want to play in time and let the them watch movies that aren’t necessarily the most appropriate for them. I figured out quickly that kids don’t come wit instructions and it’s okay not to be perfect! My kids are happy, healthy, loving, smart and bad parenting is to blame. I’m so happy that I found your site and I plan to follow you on your journey just for my own sanity. It is reassuring to know that I am not alone in this world! Thank you for sharing!

  100. Jenni Wiggins says:

    Please forgive the typos and grammatical errors. I am using a stupid smart phone that likes to automatically correct everything!

  101. akidrockmom says:

    After 13 years of marriage to a police officer, I suddenly find myself alone, a single working mother of 2 boys 6 & 8…Can I just say THANK YOU? After all those years of crazy rules and looking perfect (far from it) to everyone outside..I am finally FREE to leave the dishes and the laundry and go to the beach or wherever else the hell I wanna go. I feel like a prisoner who has just been set free and the LAST thing I wanna do is fricken clean something!! Among other things… it is a hard enough job of trying to raise these boys into men alone, but I’ll be dammed if I am going to be chained to other peoples idea of what a perfect parent is….as I am surrounded by horrid type a mothers.
    So..THANK YOU for letting Mom’s like us know..we do not walk alone, that we are not perfect, our laundry may pile up or the dishes, or the weeds..and yes we have had ice cream for dinner and I will not feel ashamed!
    Not to mention, I swear I am the oldest mom (46) for a first grader in the school this year…they can all suck it cause I am a HOT MESS me..come over, we can drunk fold laundry lol
    Don’t dink outta that coffee mug, it’s NOT water..I don’t care what it looks like.
    I’m getting the tee shirt…can’t wait to wear it for school drop off and pick up’s!! heh heh

  102. Nikki says:

    I live reading everything you write and can totally relate to it. As I was reading this blog, I saw a whole lot of myself in your writing. Thanks for that because it makes me feel like a real person ( no joke, thank you).

  103. Alia says:

    You just described me and my three boys to a T!!

    We love “The Heat”. Hearing my 7 year run around saying, “Ah you, or ah you not….a nock?” is my favorite thing ever.

    And when school informs me he said the f-word on the playground again, I pretend to be all parent-y in front of them. Then, I just remind him that those are “at-home” words. Quit using them at school!

  104. Vicki says:

    I absolutely LOVE this blog! It sounds as if you have done a great job with your kids and they are very well adjusted young men!

  105. Love you. Love this. I really needed to read this today. 🙁

  106. Stephanie says:

    Love this…it is my parenting style described perfectly!

  107. michelle says:

    Amen Sista!!
    i am australian and i love how universal this seems to be . i get a constant flow of “i cant beleive your child has to (Cook/Clean/walk to school) . we are supposed to be raising well adjusted independent adults and knowing that this word is spreading is awesome..

  108. Melody says:

    Thank you a MILLION times for this!!! I so needed it today!
    Apparently I am an awesome Mom too!!!

  109. AMEN I love reading your blog. Your rants your truths & obviously your antics. If your a bad mom… wow I am absolutely horrible. Apparently I’ve been also doing it wrong for YEARS. Who wants to be a mother. I love being a mom. So . Thank you sistah for making me feel normal. Would love to havesome Titos Cocktails with you one day. YOU MAKE ME DAY!

  110. aarin says:

    This by far is the best thing I have ever read! We have 5 total ages 14,9,8,8 & 3. You described my household almost to a tee. I love that I can share inappropriate jokes with my 14 year old son. Thanks for this.

  111. Donna Bolton says:

    This made me cry because I too am a great mom and terrible parent. I came from a very strict family with little love shown and I did not want that for my son. We watch the pageant part of Bad Grandpa on a daily basis and laugh and hug and swear and enjoy every minute together. He rarely will eat a veggie but he’ll eat fruit and sometimes I let him drink Sprite in the morning but I think I am creating a person who will look for the enjoyment that life has to offer and learn to deal with consequences as they come and that’s all you can do. Otherwise you’re raising little robots who will learn to work for other people and live for their approval. Bullshit. My kid will have staff. You’re great and your sons are great. Keep on keeping on HMM. You rock!

  112. Amy Wills says:

    All the coddling that the psychiatrists of this day and age have encouraged has created a bunch of entitled, lazy, assholes. A comedian said “since we’ve taken “loosing” away in sports and failure in schools and replaced it with giving everyone a medal and passing weve created a generation of entitled overconfident idiots”. I couldn’t agree more. When i was growing up my team won or lost based on how hard we played and how much we practiced. I failed classes if i didn’t do the work. I was expected to do chores as part of a responsibilty to my family NOT to earn money. I didn’t get rewards for doing what is expected of me (behaving in school for instance). I am a responsible adult now. I am also not a good parent. I have raised one child and she joined the Air Force and is doing amazing things! I have two more that I’m still working on and i think they have a shot at being fucking awesome also! So keep being a bad parent because it’s worked for generations before us and it will keep working!

  113. Jessica Honecker says:

    I did the exqct same things with my son. He turned out to be a respectful quality human being. He is 22 and a father, planned of course. His girlfriend is great and I would do the same thing again.

  114. Kimabwil says:

    I just love you. That is all.

  115. Nickelle says:

    I thought I was the only one… I cried because I am a terrible parent but I try to be a great mom. My kids are snarky and make smart ass comments and quote movies and say ‘dese nuts and “that’s what she said” at totally inappropriate times. They are awesome – just like their mom.

    1. Michelle says:

      What amazing feed back! And stories everyone has shared. I agree!!! I have been trying so hard to be perfect magazine mom. Perfect shiny floors and tidy beds. And I just can’t! I think what kids remember is the time spent together, the laughter. Cuddly movie nights and knowing how much you love them. Show them your interested in their life and their passions support them encourage them. I realize this as I am older and the kind of mom my mother was. She always shot down my passions. If I said I wanted to be a fashion designer she told me it’s competitive and that’s if I get into college. And that I would change my mind we will see she said. My grandmother bought me a sewing machine. Build up their curiosities don’t ever let them doubt their own potential.

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