Things I feel guilty about as a parent:

by Wendy Copley on April 11, 2008

One thing I never knew before I became a mom was that I would feel guilty all the time. I know this is unreasonable. My logical brain tells me that I am a good mom — that my son is awesome and my next son will be too. But man does that emotional part of my brain keep me in line when I get too cocky.

Here are a handful of things I feel guilty about as a parent — some rightfully so, some irrational:

  • working
  • working at home
  • working at home in the evenings
  • engaging in my hobbies
  • letting my son watch DVD’s
  • letting my son play video games
  • letting my son see me play video games
  • letting my son see me play video games where a house gets robbed and introducing a new fear of burgalars
  • giving my son sugary foods to eat
  • giving him pizza and french fries too often
  • giving my son Cheerios and dried cranberries for dinner some times
  • waiting too long to start my son in preschool
  • taking my son out of day care
  • leaving my son in day care too long
  • forgetting to send cards to day care with Wyatt on Valentines Day
  • not sending my son to a preschool that his friend attends
  • not intuitively knowing everything that every other parent I meet already knows
  • yelling
  • losing patience with a three-year-old
  • swearing in front of my son
  • that one time I told Wyatt to “brush his f***ing teeth” and threw his toothbrush in the sink really hard (I still feel really guilty about this one almost a year later. I have a feeling I’ll take this one to my grave.)
  • letting Wyatt skip baths
  • not singing to the new baby in utero as often as I sang to Wyatt
  • just beginning to document my current pregnancy
  • eating fish while I’m pregnant
  • eating goat and bleu cheese while I’m pregnant
  • not sleeping as much during this pregnancy
  • feeling stressed out during this pregnancy
  • sometimes forgetting that I’m pregnant

What about you all? Anyone want to join in on the guilt-fest? Leave a comment if you feel up for it.

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  • emily sparkle

    just from this morning…

    – forgetting to change his diaper the moment we got out of bed
    – getting annoyed because he’s feeling picky about food and eating
    – losing my cool when he hurls a bunch of cantelope mush on me, the chair, the rug
    – not being able to recognize his NEW signals for sleep until he’s at the crabtastick stage
    – having too many plastic toys in his life
    – making him cry when i have to wash/pick the boogers/sticky stuff off his face
    – making him frustrated to the point where he waves his arms and scratches my face

    oh… i could go on and on…

    you’re a great mom, wemby,

  • emily sparkle

    just from this morning…

    – forgetting to change his diaper the moment we got out of bed
    – getting annoyed because he’s feeling picky about food and eating
    – losing my cool when he hurls a bunch of cantelope mush on me, the chair, the rug
    – not being able to recognize his NEW signals for sleep until he’s at the crabtastick stage
    – having too many plastic toys in his life
    – making him cry when i have to wash/pick the boogers/sticky stuff off his face
    – making him frustrated to the point where he waves his arms and scratches my face

    oh… i could go on and on…

    you’re a great mom, wemby,

  • So are you, Em!

  • So are you, Em!

  • Your Dad

    How about leaving your newborn sweetie, sleeping in her crib, while you and her brother go up to the Dairy Queen for an ice cream? And getting caught in the act? Don’t worry readers, it turned out all right.

  • Your Dad

    How about leaving your newborn sweetie, sleeping in her crib, while you and her brother go up to the Dairy Queen for an ice cream? And getting caught in the act? Don’t worry readers, it turned out all right.

  • Aunt Linda

    Oh man, I don’t even want to know what’s wrong with goat and blue cheese. Now I’ve got something new to feel guilty about! If I started listing everything I feel guilty about I would never finish. Welcome to the club Wendy!

  • Aunt Linda

    Oh man, I don’t even want to know what’s wrong with goat and blue cheese. Now I’ve got something new to feel guilty about! If I started listing everything I feel guilty about I would never finish. Welcome to the club Wendy!

  • OK – after reading your entry re. the lunchbox, NOTHING should make you feel bad! Yet, I think guilt is part of what we have to live with to be good moms. That’s what gives us those extra few seconds of patience and sanity to coolly say “please put that down. now.” when we find the toddler about to brush his nonexistent hair with the toilet brush we forgot to put away. at least he didn’t brush his teeth with it. 🙂 love your blog, btw.

  • OK – after reading your entry re. the lunchbox, NOTHING should make you feel bad! Yet, I think guilt is part of what we have to live with to be good moms. That’s what gives us those extra few seconds of patience and sanity to coolly say “please put that down. now.” when we find the toddler about to brush his nonexistent hair with the toilet brush we forgot to put away. at least he didn’t brush his teeth with it. 🙂 love your blog, btw.

  • Oh, that totally made me laugh and relate. I’m not even a mom yet (32 weeks pregnant with my first child) and already I can see, and have dipped my toe into the GIANT SEA OF GUILT that seems to pervade the world of mothers. It’s crazy. I feel guilty for:
    taking baths that may be too hot for the fetus,
    not writing down every wonderful and cherished moment of my pregnancy because I’m too busy doing my own thing,
    just finally staring to do prenatal yoga THIS MORNING,
    over-idealizing how I’m going to raise him.
    And of course, the two glasses of red wine I drank before I knew I was pregnant.
    Of course, this is all before I’ve even gotten him out of my body.
    I can see how this list is going to get a LOT longer.

  • Oh, that totally made me laugh and relate. I’m not even a mom yet (32 weeks pregnant with my first child) and already I can see, and have dipped my toe into the GIANT SEA OF GUILT that seems to pervade the world of mothers. It’s crazy. I feel guilty for:
    taking baths that may be too hot for the fetus,
    not writing down every wonderful and cherished moment of my pregnancy because I’m too busy doing my own thing,
    just finally staring to do prenatal yoga THIS MORNING,
    over-idealizing how I’m going to raise him.
    And of course, the two glasses of red wine I drank before I knew I was pregnant.
    Of course, this is all before I’ve even gotten him out of my body.
    I can see how this list is going to get a LOT longer.

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