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    We all know that hindsight is 20/20, and you pretty much need to learn every life lesson for yourself. But what if you could go back and tell your pre-parenthood self what you'd learned ... what would you say? Here are 25 pieces of advice my friends would pass on ... 

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    There is a constant battle in my house over bath time. "But we're not due for one," my children like to argue. "We're not dirty!!!" Now, much as I love freshly bathed children, sometimes I'm just not up for the fight. Sometimes, I just don't give a shit. Sometimes, I just tell myself one of the following...

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    The other day, I went to get a pen from my bag and instead pulled out 1) a lollipop from the bank from a month ago, 2) three rainbow loom bracelets, 3) my son's broken glasses, 4) a rogue soccer sock, and 5) three broken crayons.  

    I'm such a mother, I thought, rolling my eyes at myself.

    I asked my Facebook friends when the last time they had that thought was, and I could relate to every single answer. Here, 20 ways you know you're a mother.

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    It's time for another installment of "You're not the only flawed parent out there." Could you use the reminder, too?

    Below are 10 recent Scary Mommy Confessions for those of you who may be having trouble keeping up with all of the seemingly perfect parents out there. Because, really? We've all got something to confess ...

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    A good friend of mine is expecting her first child any day. For her baby shower last month, the attendees were asked to jot down a few pieces of advice to pass on to the mom-to-be. Most women came up with great reminders of things to do -- take pictures, keep a baby book, take vacations, etc. -- but when I got home, it dawned on me that the most important things I've learned about parenthood have been the don'ts. Don'ts like these ...

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    Mother's Day. That special day every May, when you show the moms in your life just how special they are to you. If you're scouring the Internet looking for the perfect gift, you've landed in the wrong place; the perfect Mother's Day gift is as individual to each mom as a fingerprint, and what makes my mom happy might make yours start looking through Craigslist for back alley hitmen. Fear not! There are, however, some things husbands and partners should not get their wife under any circumstances ... 

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    Baby showers are one of those things that you either love like rainbows and fluffy kittens or hate with an intensity that cannot be measured. Regardless of how you feel about them, you've probably been invited to at least one, and you also probably had a few minutes of brain meltdown as you pondered the gift you should bring. Unless it's a gag gift party or you just really want to piss off the new mom, there are a few things that you should never gift at a baby shower. Things like these:

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    Congratulations, new dad!

    Are you excited to finally have the woman you married back, now that she's no longer consumed with carrying your offspring? Sorry to be the one to break it to you, but that woman is gone. Forever.

    Since you might have some trouble navigating these uncharted waters, here are some tips for surviving this new stranger called the person you chose to spend the rest of your life with ...

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    You vowed to love him unconditionally. To cherish him. To respect and honor him. To care for and protect him, and to comfort and encourage him. And hopefully you do, as he does you.

    But it's a good thing you didn't vow to tell him every thought that goes through your head. Because, based on these confessions, if you had, you'd probably be divorced now ...

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About This Column
Jill Smokler

Being a parent can be scary and so we offer Jill Smokler, better known as Scary Mommy, to bring some levity to the ridiculous (but sometimes serious) situations we often find ourselves in.

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