Mean Mom vs. Nice Dad

I’m a Mean Mom.

PhilBillPaul is a Nice Dad.

Our roles have been clearly defined for many years.

My role as the mean mom has become extraordinarily difficult during these teen years.

Valium difficult.

I won’t go into a play-by-play of all my meanness this weekend. I’ll save it for another post.

Suffice to say, “I am mean and always say no and am always in a bad mood.”

I’m paraphrasing one of the teens’ rant with tears about how mean I am. The only thing she the darling didn’t say is that I’m mean.

Some day I’ll also go into detail about how Nice Dad just wants “everybody to be happy.”

Which is a beautiful sentiment. Really it is.

He was put here on earth to make me look even meaner.

I often fantasize about living in a crappy little apartment (crappy little beach cottage would be even better) and letting Nice Dad and the teens live in funland and squalor.

I’m not saying I would abandon my family–they could most certainly come visit me.

PhilBillPaul could even call and come pick me up for a date.

I would be willing to work them all into my busy schedule.

My therapist didn’t think this was such a keen idea when I ran it by her last week.

But then again, she doesn’t live at my house, now does she?

Just thinking out loud here. (sigh)

I dream of little things like…

  • Clean dish towels with no dried food on them
  • My scissors and tape being in the drawer where I put them
  • A coffee table that doesn’t have sticky I-don’t-know-what-on-it
  • More than 3 squares of toilet paper in the guest bathroom
  • Not tripping on anything when I go up or down the stairs

I’m showing my shallow side. I know this.

I have issues. i know this too.

Just venting because I’m sure I’ll feel better if I just SHARE this with you.

And I wonder if anyone else feels this way?

And the Valium doesn’t seem to be working…


One year ago..

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  1. 1


    Just wanted you to know you are not the only “Mean” mom. This weekend as I was driving my 14 year old daughter to buy her Point shoes for ballet – which by the way cost about $65.00 and she needs a new pair every couple of months! – informed me that “you are a mean mom most of the time!” So -you are not alone and I am glad I am in such good company.

  2. 2
    Diane says:

    I too am a “mean mom” and am reminded of that each and every day by my teens, especially my daughter. It is usually because I won’t buy her something she thinks she needs but really doesn’t or wants to go somewhere and I won’t take her.

    We are fortunate yet unfortunate to live where many of the teens drive nicer cars than either Paul or I and have unlimited funds to do as they please. This is another post in itself BUT I wish some of her friends had “mean” parents so I didn’t look so bad.

  3. 3
    Sherra says:

    Leigh Anne–Please don’t knock yourself off the pedestal I have put you on. You are not mean – you probably just heard the tail end of your daughter saying “I think your friend Sherra is a mean mom most of the time.” 🙂

    Diane–Oh yeah, let’s talk about the cool cars we had vs. what these kids drive now. Ann & I were so HAWT (I heard that is a cool spelling for HOT??!!) in her AMC Pacer. ROFL

    Nancy–You’re right up there with L.A. in the nice category so quit trying to fit in and act like you’re mean. I’m still your friend 🙂

  4. 4
    Nancy C says:

    I’m pretty sure I’m mean too…..but for different reasons. “I just don’t get it”.
    And if LA is a mean mom, then for sure, I am beyond mean. Kids are definitely humbling….maybe that’s not the right word-“mean as well”.

    Tomorrow is a new day my friend-we are all looking forward I think! 🙂

  5. 5
    Brenda says:

    I have been one of the meanest mom’s in the world for a number of years now. I developed this role when my kids were teenagers too. I made sure to introduce myself as the Meanest mom in the world to all their friends. I told my kids it was my job.

    Now that my kids are in their 20s, they still call me that but we have many laughs about it. All of them have expressed that they are really glad I was “mean” for the most part. So hang in there — it does get better.

    Now that I’m a grandmother, I have passed the “mean” torch to my daughter and I’m now going to be the “nicest” grammy around.

  6. 6
    Tammy says:

    I hear your posts and I totally get what everyone is saying. Because home schooling allows us to spend most of our day together, I have many more opportunities to be the “mean mom”. For my girls they think it is mean because I hold them to a much stricter set of rules than the world seems to have. They aren’t allowed to watch movies that haven’t been approved, no clothing that reveals bellies or cracks, no dating, no black nail polish, no being dropped off at random locations to “just hang out” without parental supervision, the list goes on and on. But the way I figure it, if my kids’ don’t get themselves into any serious kind of trouble resulting in the police being called or family services intervening, I am doing my job.

    I am one of the few people I think that love the teen years and find myself always volunteering to help with that age bracket. And it has taught me a lot about what is going on in our world and what kind of things these kids are faced with daily. It is a much different world than the one I grew up in! And, if my being a “mean mom” protects them from falling into a situation that could change or ruin their lives than I will proudly hold the title of mean mom with honor and joy! Hopefully, they will look back on this time when they are wise old women (you know, mid-twenties!) and thank me for my meanness!

    Thanks for sharing Sherra and for putting a real face on the tough world of mothering teenagers! Can’t wait to hear why you are so “mean”!!!

  7. 7
    Sherra says:

    Brenda–Don’t tease me. I know it won’t get better…but it will get different! I do look forward to the nice grandma stage but please, please give me at least a decade before I move to that season!!!

    Tammy–So many advantages of homeschooling that people just don’t get! I remember it well and support a sheltered childhood on every level. 🙂

  8. 8
    Joanne says:

    I haven’t hit the teenage years with my own children but 15 year old nephew has already told me if I continue the way I’m going that my kids are going to hate me! I told him I’m alright with that. I was a wild teenager and it always surprises my nephew when I know he’s lying or tell him what he’s not saying. He thinks I’m psychic. LOL

    I comletely understand about wanting to find things where they belong or have clear stairs. I find myself yelling from my kitchen “WHERE ARE MY SCISSORS!!” My 5 year old daughter is now picking up after “the boys” as she refers to her 7 year old brother and her father. I’ll accept the help as long as it lasts!

  9. 9
    Tina Ruddell says:

    Wait a second, you mean it DOESN’T get better as they get older??? I really had hoped that once we got past these early years (3 at 6 1/2 and 1 at 5) that they would be more self-sufficient and not leave things where they DIDN’T belong and put things back where they DID. Rats.

  10. 10
    Sherra says:

    Joanne–Who knew that SCISSORS could be such a bad mood trigger? I’m telling you it drives me nuts and I try to hide them and they always find them!

    You’re getting some good practice with the nephew. Buckle up for teen years–I have no advice.

    Tina–Did someone tell you that BIG LIE? It was one of my first posts and it’s my duty to tell all moms–especially multiple moms–the truth.

    Meanwhile, as is customary here in Georgia when we *meet* triplet moms, I bow to you. 🙂

  11. 11
    Melinda says:

    Let me just take a bow to the triplet mom as well. I’m SURE she will develop her own defenses very soon!

    Don’t think I’ve ever not been able to find the scissors yet. Of course I always just ask one of the children to please go and get them from where ever it was they left them! I’ll just give myself a pat on the back for that one.

    I must confess I do like being a mean mom. I don’t get the chance near often enough. These two 17 yr old daughters of mine aren’t going anywhere yet. Oh, well, guess it will come soon enough. I just hope it isn’t AFTER they move out. It’s SO difficult to control them once they do that. I know you can cut off the funds but I just shudder to think how I might find them living since I see how they live while they are still at home. One daughter’s not too bad. The other lives in the basement and her dad and I both do a lot of yelling about the state of her room. I think he just might be the mean dad in this case!


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