Parenting Mistakes Are Only Funny When No One Gets Hurt

car babyI recently heard a crazy story on my local radio station told by a dad about how the brakes failed on his stroller and it went careening down a steep San Francisco hill with his daughter in it.
My first reaction: “You schmuck!” My second reaction: “Let’s face it. Every one of us has had some not-so-great parenting moments, and if we admit it, we can have empathy for other parents in tight spots (and help out when we can!).

Comedian Louis CK tells a very funny, very NSFW story about suddenly realizing his baby's stroller is next to the tailpipe of the car, and musing that he would not be able to tell his wife if he lost their baby that way.

Okay, might be unforgivable ... but here are some of my worst mom moments. I'll let you be the judge.

Here are some from me and mine. Have you got us beat?


I was in full “let’s get going!” mode, and chased my husband and stepkids out of the apartment. “Let’s go! We’re gonna be late! Shoes on! Keep moving!” I barked, and finally everyone was out of the apartment and the door was closed. I looked at my husband. He looked at me. We both realized neither of us was holding the baby. I unlocked the apartment door to find her sitting in her high chair, feet straight out in front of her, quietly munching the last of one of the kids’ pieces of toast. Oops.
Wait, I’ve got a better one: I was driving to the grocery store just the other day, and peeked into the rear-view mirror to see Abby grinning back at me. This was unusual because she was turned around and peeking at me over the top of her car seat because I had not buckled her in.
Of course, that’s one step better than my friend, who arrived at her kid’s pick-up and realized she had forgotten his car seat. The school was very strict about pick-up times, so she had to either pay something like a $50 overage charge or drive home commando. Draw your own conclusions about what she chose.
Then there’s my dad. In a total Everybody Loves Raymond-type moment, he got overly involved in his gardening project and didn’t notice that 2-year-old me had wandered off, into the park next to our house. The best part of this story is that just as my mom realized I was gone, someone knocked on the door and said, “Here’s your dog, I found her in the park.” And my mom shrieked, “You brought back the dog, and not the toddler?!”

Of course, she did later leave me and my younger sister playing in the car while she was at the laundromat, and Em popped the emergency brake. I was frantically trying to wiggle out of her car seat, horrified that some EMT worker would think I was a weirdo for sitting in there at the ripe old age of 8, when a hippie ran alongside the car, opened the door, and slammed his bare foot onto the brake (I still remember seeing it!) before we hit the open road.
Another friend of mine was left at an Italian restaurant by – get this – her mom, her dad, and her grandma when she was just 10 days old. She says they came back and got her when they got hungry again.
I guess it’s only funny if it turned out fine. What’s your best-forgotten parenting moment?

Image via Blueberry Muffin/flickr

Read More >