Mother confesses her top 11 parenting fails

By Pam Magwaza
28 July 2017

If you're a normal mommy, these might be totally repeatable.

"Raising little people is really hard!"

Blogger mom Kelly Pretorius has a few confessions to make about her parenting habits and if you're a normal mommy, they might be totally relatable.

Here are her candid confessions:

 "If you're an avid reader of mommy blogs, like me, you might find yourself coming across articles that will leave you really down in the dumps. You might leave that page feeling like the worst mother in the world because you don't fulfill all the super mom qualities that are expected of you.

Posts like this have really made me sad, mad, bad and all other negative words that rhyme because all these unrealistic expectations were just that...unreal and unnecessary.

So, I thought I would have a mom ‘confession time’. Here are 11 of my worst ones. Judge if you would like:

 1. I can’t cook.

There, I said it. This is probably the one that I am most judged for.

What mom can’t cook? All of us are supposed to be able to put a healthy, balanced home cooked meal on the table every night – it’s part of the “mom job”. The truth is I can't and the worst part? I don’t want to either.

The mess freaks me out and I just don’t even enjoy trying, especially when we get home at 5:30/6pm at night. I have perfected my fish finger oven timing though – 8 minutes on 220 degrees, turn over and put back in the oven for 6 minutes. This is served with a quarter of an avo, a mielie and some tomato. Alternatively, when my hubby doesn’t cook, they get microwave meals from Woolies (very healthy ones, veg and all - I promise).

2. I don't share my sweets.

I have, more than once (more than twice if I am honest), hidden in my bathroom and scoffed a bag of speckled eggs, a bar of chocolate, half a jar of Nutella, so quickly, I didn’t actually even taste it.


3. I can be stingy.

I have told my daughter she won’t like the nougat I was eating as it was made with mayonnaise just because I didn’t want to share. She now refuses to even try nougat, convinced we are trying to trick her into eating mayonnaise… Oops. 


4. I forget "important" things.

I forget to return reply slips to school, a lot. I lose my kids message bag. I forget to check for letters. I forget to pay for school photos. 


5. I fed my kids unhealthy treats for breakfast

I gave my kids a Coco-Pops bar and Milo for breakfast this morning.

I know. It is really bad but I was so late for work, my alarm didn’t go off and Barry is in Durban.

I had to paint my son’s face like a clown for school, feed the dogs, pack bags (try to remember to check for letters) and get them and myself ready in an hour. I just couldn’t manage.

 To make it even worse, I then tried to convince Casey not to tell her teacher. What is wrong with me? (I contemplated typing something healthier instead of Milo there, but that would have been a lie.) PHOTO: Supplied PHOTO: Supplied


6. RSVP? What's that again?

I forget to RSVP for kids parties.

I have the invite, I put it on my fridge, or on my well-intended pin board in the hall. I even buy the present, but then it gets lost behind shopping lists, the kids' drawings, and star charts and eventually slips my mind. When I finally remember, it’s too late to reply and I am so embarrassed that I leave it even longer! Other moms seem to remember to do it. Moms reply to my kids’ invitations. How is it that I can’t remember such a little thing, how hard is it? 

When I finally remember, it’s too late to reply and I am so embarrassed that I leave it even longer. Other moms seem to remember to do it. Moms reply to my kids’ invitations. How is it that I can’t remember such a little thing, how hard is it? 


7. I don't enjoy shopping with the kids.

I enjoy going grocery shopping alone. I walk slowly and down every isle, especially the cleaning isle. That’s weird I know…


8. I shout at my kids.

I shouted at my kids so loudly the neighbors heard me once. (They only told me once… it may have been more.) 


9. I'm not always in a cuddling mood.

A couple of times, when my son Luke has asked me to lie with him at night, I hoped he would fall asleep really quickly because I had stuff to do.


10. I forget bed time Bible readings

I promised Casey I would read her Bible with her two days in a row and forgot both times, then when she reminded me at bed time I told her it was too late, and promised to do it the next day.

And the last one:

11. I guilt trip myself, a lot.

I go to bed every single night upset with myself about something I said/didn’t say/ did/didn’t do/forgot to do. I lie in bed feeling a bit nauseous with guilt. Thoughts run through my mind like: “Why can’t I be more like the other moms?”, “Why did I wish my little boy to sleep so quickly? I am supposed to cherish every second with them, and bedtime is the best time to bond!”, “Why did I lose my patience so easily tonight? Come on Kelly!” I eventually fall asleep promising myself I will try harder; be a better mom, a better wife; tomorrow. I somehow always manage to disappoint myself – Every. Single. Day.

I love my kids more than life itself; and sometimes I just look at them in awe, full of gratitude. They are the best thing that has ever happened to me and our lives would be totally empty without them but damn, raising little people is hard!

PHOTO: Supplied PHOTO: Supplied

Admitting these things isn't to try to compete in who can be the worst mom. Failing is a normal part of being a parent, I think anyway. Whether you work full-time, half-time or are a Stay-at-home mom – it doesn’t get any easier.

One mom may make her own granola for her kids for breakfast, limit their TV time and feed them strictly gluten-free lunches; while another gives her kids Weetabix for breakfast, lets them watch as much TV as they want and feeds them ham and cheese sandwiches with a banana for lunch. The point is, both moms are trying their best to be the best they can be and I think we can all be a little less judgmental and a little more supportive of each other.

 At the end of the day, I may feel like a total loser mom, but my kids are happy, healthy and think I am the best mom in the world - so maybe, just maybe I am a bit too hard on myself - and maybe you are too!"

Follow Kelly on her personal blog

This story was submitted to YOU and has been minimally edited. Do you have a story to tell? Send an email to Pam.Magwaza@you.co.za.

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