How to Keep Your Mom Fails From Messing Up Your Kid

Absolutely nobody is perfect, which means that there’s no such thing as a perfect parent either. Of course there are those totally snobby, holier-than-thou types that think they’re perfect, but don’t worry, they’ll get their rude awakening someday when their kids grow up and realize there’s life outside of Uptight Land.

As for the rest of us … well, sometimes we totally drop the ball on the motherhood thing. We yell, we forget things, we cuss, we cut corners, and at the end of the day we drop five dollars into the therapy jar and hope it’s a wash.


One of the worst things you can do when you mess up as a parent is to refuse to acknowledge the failure. Your little one is hurt or let down somehow by something you wouldn’t or couldn’t or didn’t or did do, and acting like nothing happened isn’t going to make everything magically better.

Here are 10 common parenting mistakes we make and how to recover from them.

Mom Fail: You scream at your kid to "Shut Up!"
The Recovery
: After the sick feeling in your stomach subsides, hug your child, and apologize. Don’t say you only yelled because they were bothering you. They’re kids, they’re going to bug you. It’s in their job description. Don’t expect them to read your moods enough to know when you’ve reached the boiling point.

Mom Fail: You say the F-word in front of your child.
The Recovery
: Tell them you’re sorry you used your grown-up words in front of them. Tell them kids aren’t allowed to say them until they’ve grown up, moved out, and are paying their own bills.

Mom Fail: You're late to pick up your kid at school. She's the last one sitting there, looking sad.
The Recovery
: Apologize. Promise to let her stay up a little later to make up for it. Regret it at bedtime. Regret it more in the morning when she won’t get out of bed. Set a reminder on your phone so you’re not late again.

Mom Fail: You forgot to get a gift for the birthday party you forgot about -- that starts in 45 minutes.
The Recovery
: Text the parent of the birthday child to ask if they’d prefer an Amazon or iTunes gift card.

Mom Fail: You realize that “one more show” has turned into five hours of straight screen time. They throw tantrums when you turn it off. You lose your mind at them losing their minds.
The Recovery
: Go to the craft store the next day and load up on art supplies so they can “entertain themselves.”

Mom Fail: Glue, glitter, and paint cover your dining room table, your precious darlings, and the front of your pants. You’re exhausted because kids are not good at entertaining themselves with art.
The Recovery
: Wine. The only recovery for this is wine. Send the kids outside or stick them in the bath.

Mom Fail: Your kids find their beautiful artwork in the trash.
The Recovery
: Ask how in the world that got in there, take it out, admire it, put it lovingly on a high shelf for a month until they forget about it, then throw it out.

Mom Fail: Your kid overhears you talking about how annoying you think her bratty best friend is.
The Recovery
: You were talking about a different little girl of the same name you once knew, and you’re so glad that her friend isn’t like that.

Mom Fail: You let them watch a borderline scary movie and it ends up terrifying them.
The Recovery
: Let them sleep with you for the night. Just make sure it’s only for the night unless you want to do the family bed thing.

Mom Fail: Your kid ends up in bed with you every night., even when she starts off in her own room.
The Recovery
: Hope it doesn’t last until she goes to college. Be thankful she doesn’t snore.


What parenting fails are you guilty of?


Image via Jeremy Page/Flickr

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