Like Magazine

Confessions of a Good But Often Crappy Mother

February 23, 2015
Stepford Wife

It’s difficult to pinpoint the moment I turned into a stereotypical mother and wife. As a teenager I sneered at my own mothers willingness to cook, clean, take my crap and drop cliches into every conversation.

I promised myself I’d be different; I’d travel the U.S. in a campervan and paint every room in my house black, but twenty years, a husband and three kids later I’ve become a Stepford Wife – albeit an incredibly bad one.

Things I swore I wouldn’t do when I became a wife and mother:

20150308_145007Lose my temper.

I’ve always been an easy going people-pleaser so this one would be easy to keep, right? Wrong! My kids have made me so incandescent with rage that I have literally foamed at the mouth. I have screamed till I’ve had to take a pill for the self-induced sore throat/ burst vein in my neck and gone tit for tat in a bout of “no, you shut-up”. There have been occasions where I’ve even tried crying and pleading with them as if they had any capacity for empathy or sympathy. These little people are demanding and have skills ranging from the irritating.. nose/ ass picking to the outrageous.. Ever had a dirty protest on your computer keyboard when potty training? Or had to pick a child’s shoe from your lasagne? It takes a lot of counting to ten (thousand) to survive a day and I find stepping into another room and whispering the foulest words I can think of helps (gee-bag can be particularly cathartic). Alcohol soothes, actually the promise of a glass of wine at the end of a day does as much for me as an actual one, and the next day is not as painful.


I can be a desperate bitch sometimes . Do a lot of women resent their husbands? I love mine, I fancy him, I respect him but sometimes I’d like to kick him hard in the ass like Bishop Brennan. How come he gets to shower alone, have a leisurely lunch and then kiss the kids goodbye and toddle off to work without a smear of snot on his top? How come he can open his underwear drawer at all times and find it’s magically restocked? I asked him this question the other night and he said “O Christ just leave my underwear to one side and I’ll figure out the machine and do them myself just to shut you up?” I hadn’t realised I’d thrown this nugget in his face many times before. I actually started to hysterically laugh and then realised I was crying… a strange experience.

Feed my kids junk.

I started well with my first, only feeding him Organix rice cakes and carrot stix from Boots. I’m not sure how he got a taste for real junk but I would have to bin all the organic stuff while he cried for Snax and Milky Bars. When my second son came along 3 years later, my determination had waned somewhat and he was born a sugar junkie, possibly due to my obsession with Double Deckers and full-fat Coke when pregnant. A year later, son number 3 arrived and I was just short of handing him a Chupa Chup in the delivery ward. It’s like most womens’ weight mantra… “I’m trying to be good” They do like fruit but time after time healthy dinners end up binned in preference of nuggets or sausages. I can’t judge as I won world’s pickiest eater from the years 1976 to 1996 inclusively. I’m so envious of all those mothers on Facebook displaying their fun afternoons baking with the kids. The thought fills me with horror. On a good day my house looks as if it’s been turned over by the gestapo but to add flour and broken eggs to that? No thanks! Plus I’ll just end up eating them.. syns, syns, syns!

Let myself go/live in leggings.

I did manage to maintain a semblance of togetherness until number 2 came along but it’s now about choices. Do I shower or should I try to get the kids to school on time? Do I use my precious couple of few hours free time at night to pluck, primp and groom or do I lie semi conscious on the couch, half watching Parks and Recreation and half playing online scrabble with my mam? Do I live in leggings? Absolutely, all the bloody time because everything else accentuates my muffin top.

Allow technology.

Hands up who else uses YouTube as a babysitter? Frankly, I’m baffled as to how our parents kept us amused. I did envision sitting by my kids bedside reading a chapter a night from the classics but I’ll leave that to Stampy Long Nose or Ballistic Squid while I hoover, unload the dishwasher and get schoolbags ready.

MummascribblesOh yeah and in case you were wondering, my walls are magnolia.

Originally published in Like Magazine.


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  • Reply Susan Biddulph March 11, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    Youtube is the third parent in my house and if im honest the only parent they will obey….am linking my daughter (first time Mam) up to this blog – she needs to know the truth!

    • Reply Aisling March 11, 2015 at 6:53 pm

      It’s too soon for her to know the truth Susan. Let it sink in slowly. I’ve had to ban youtube as I found some fabulous obscenities written on a piece of paper in Conall’s schoolbag.

      • Reply Carolyn March 11, 2015 at 7:36 pm

        My goodness, I can’t imagine where (or who) he might have picked those up from!

  • Reply Lisa Phelan March 11, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    Hahaha thank god for you tube!

  • Reply Linda March 11, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    Thank god for this blog, I feel a better parent seen as we are on the same page or maybe we are both rubbish!!! Ah well we will find out in about 15 years whence all comes out when the kids are in counselling

  • Reply Aisling March 11, 2015 at 7:08 pm

    I won’t care cos I’ll be living on an island somewhere or else in a padded cell depending.

  • Reply Linda March 11, 2015 at 7:18 pm

    Probably the latter

  • Reply Emma cassidy March 11, 2015 at 9:28 pm

    Brilliant confessions of mom sounds like Me at minute !!

    • Reply Aisling March 11, 2015 at 9:33 pm

      It’s tough going from one to two Emma and they’re both so young x

  • Reply Edel March 11, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    Leggings, sausages, nuggets, rage, iPads…. All aplenty here too 🙂

    • Reply Aisling March 11, 2015 at 9:54 pm

      I glanced quickly at your comment and thought it said just pads at the end. I was going to tell you that that issue will be dealt with down the road ha

  • Reply Marianne Dienes March 11, 2015 at 10:52 pm

    Thanks Aisling! This was the perfect accompaniment to my sneaky 5 minute latte while I am doing the ‘grocery shopping’ and grandma watches bubs. Glad to hear parenting in the northern hemisphere is identical to here down under. And made me smile rather than grit my teeth as restocked my hubby’s underwear drawer yesterday… Keep writing for my mental health and to keep my husband in clean jocks.

    • Reply Aisling March 11, 2015 at 10:58 pm

      As long as you don’t have to do the sniff test

  • Reply Theresa Byrne March 12, 2015 at 9:06 am

    When mine were small it was Barney and Bob the builder over and over again. They had the DS games that kept them busy. Technology is great. Funny at times when you see your teenage daughter taking selfies of stupid faces etc and yet when you want to take a family photo she’s suddenly camera shy.

  • Reply suzanne March 12, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    Great blog – very funny but true !!! – makes me feel like a better mammy (or just better that I’m not worse than anyone else )

    • Reply Aisling March 12, 2015 at 1:25 pm

      That’s my goal Suzanne!

  • Reply Lizzie Woodman November 10, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    Ha, yes I agree with all of these! Now mine are getting a bit older I do less of the shouting, but the years between 2-4 were peppered with moments of such rage everyday… #TwinklyTuesday

    • Reply Aisling November 12, 2015 at 7:52 pm

      So there is an end to the rage yay!

  • Reply Martin - At Home With The Boys November 10, 2015 at 1:05 pm

    How our outlook on things change, as we get older? Having kids has a lot to answer for and until we have them, we have no idea!

    Being the work from home Dad, I can relate to all the points made above, including the Sock Fairy (but not the leggings!). I’m sorry, but it made me laugh. I’m so glad it’s not just me.

    Thanks for sharing #TwinklyTuesday.

    • Reply Aisling November 12, 2015 at 7:53 pm

      Thanks so much for reading…try the leggings, you’ll never look back

  • Reply Jeni Dibley-Rouse November 10, 2015 at 1:31 pm

    Love this post, good to know others are in the same boat, especially the junk food, I use to be all healthy healthy but worked out basically my child will do anything for chocolate, so thats how it pans out for us too. #twinklytuesday

    • Reply Aisling November 12, 2015 at 7:55 pm

      Whatever gets you through the day is my new motto x

  • Reply Carla S November 10, 2015 at 1:48 pm

    I think you sound just like myself and a lot of parents in the world! I swore I would be different to my own parents but in the grand scheme of things I’m so similar in the end!

    • Reply Aisling November 12, 2015 at 7:56 pm

      it’s scary how much we change but once you keep your sense of humour, you’ll survive x

  • Reply Tracey Abrahams November 11, 2015 at 5:57 am

    I did all of the above as well when my boys were younger, BUT I also painted the kitchen purple and I have a whole load of tattoos so I dont think I would make a suitable Stepford Wife either :-/

    • Reply Aisling November 12, 2015 at 7:59 pm

      I am redecorating.. and it’s a bit wilder than magnolia (grey lol)… Also I have a tattoo and my hair changes colour weekly so stepford wife thing wouldn’t work here either, nor would I want it to x

  • Reply Caro | The Twinkle Diaries November 12, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    HA! I always look forward to your posts — yes to all of these. *Almost*.

    I’ve painted a lot of my walls in charcoal grey which is nearly black 😉 I’m running with that one!! 😉 And I don’t like leggings (fat leg syndrome 😉 ). Thanks so much for linking up with us on #TwinklyTuesday

    • Reply Aisling November 12, 2015 at 8:25 pm

      I’m hideous in leggings…but the comfort and jeans make me FEEL fat xxx

  • Reply Sugar&Rhubarb November 12, 2015 at 9:55 pm

    I’m still wearing the pants that are three times too big, that were bought whilst 9 months pregnant. When did this happen!?!?!

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