Good Parent

cross-posted @ Straight From the Bottle


I can unflinchingly write about my deepest secrets. I can be self-deprecating, write about turmoil and pain and the raw truth, no problem. I can easily write about feeling like a bad person and a shitty mother, and I admit, at times I do feel that way.

It is clear that people want what is raw and honest and the truth. People want to read about people who struggle and are in pain. The idiosyncratic parent. The fucked-up hero. The unlikely star.

Parents want to read about one another’s failures. They want to say “me too” to the secrets and lies of strangers because misery loves company and people who feel alone want to know that there is no such thing.

Because there is no such thing…

As being alone.

But just as there is no such thing as being alone, there is such thing as being a confident parent. Unfortunately, and for whatever reason, no one feels comfortable saying so.

Including me.

And that’s crazy. And insane. And sad.

So here is the truth. Here is what I have hidden away for the past two years:

I’m a good mother. I trust my instincts and I am proud of who I am as a parent. I do not regret a single decision I have made thus far. I love that I’m not afraid to get dirty in the mud and dance around the house like a fool and I love that I can make Archer laugh with a single face. I love that I am unafraid and optimistic and patient. I love that I take Archer gallivanting around town to explore unlikely playgrounds. I think I'm positive and real and a good role model for my son and I think I'm doing a damn good job with this parenting thing.

There.

I said it.

Isn’t that great?

Now why the hell were those words so hard for me to type? How come it was hard for me to admit that?

Is being happy unforgivable?

Must we hide the fact that we love being mothers or fathers, women and men? That we love being with our children? That we think we are doing a damn good job?

I have to believe that many of you are like me—that you are afraid to admit to the world that you are amazing. That no matter how hard it gets, you are proud of who you are as people and parents.

Because I’m so tired of all of us thinking it’s necessary to wax poetic every week about how much we suck at being mothers and how hard it is and how afraid we are that we are fucking up our young. Day after day. Blog post after blog post. Memoir after memoir.

I am so frustrated by the fact that I cannot be a confident parent. That by saying I love myself and my abilities as a mother, I am somehow being arrogant, cocky. Vain? That we so easily say kind and loving things about our children and are unable to say anything kind and loving about ourselves. Don't we deserve that? Haven't we earned that right?

Please, say yes.


We are parenting during the age of self-help and books dictating what we are supposed to do in every situation. We have been manipulated into thinking we’re bad parents, ditching our instincts and googling even the simplest questions instead of listening to our hearts.

Admitting we are shitty parents isn’t progressive. Cynicism is one thing but hopelessness is a bummer.

Claiming to be bad parents is the new “I’m fat” for even the thinnest of women.

I’m bored with the cynicism and the sarcasm and I’m tired of feeling bad about feeling good about myself and my ability as a mother.

Fulfillment and confidence and joy should not be stifled or hidden or kept secret. No one should feel embarrassed to admit they think they’re awesome: a good parent. Because for all of the folks who think it’s cool to be “bad” it’s so much cooler to be “good.” And even cooler? Is admitting it.

Being ashamed to write about how kick-ass you are is the reason for the mommy wars. We are weak in each other’s eyes and therefore prey to criticism and judgment.

We talk all the time about the importance in empowering each other, but in order to do so, we must first empower ourselves.

....


Your turn: Tell me what makes you an amazing parent. On your blogs or in the comments or on the wall of a public bathroom stall (if you do choose to drag a sharpie across a bathroom stall, do me a favor and take a photograph?)

Include the links to your posts in the comments. I’ll be linking to your posts/ highlighting your excerpts on my blog. Thank you in advance!


....


GGC

80 comments:

foodiemama | 11:27 PM

confidence is beautiful...i love being a parent and i love the parent that i am. i am proud of myself for my natural instincts and the thought that i put into my sons life.
it is hard and it does really suck to hear the all to common"i'm a bad parent"...i am far too guilty in it even though i know i kick f'ing ass. maybe it was how we were all raised or some weird deisre to be so perfect..who knows. i've been slowly coming into my own as a mother..a good mother for 2 1/2 yrs now and it feels awesome!

Blog Antagonist | 4:40 AM

AMEN. Well said and you're so right about that being the reason for the Mommy Wars. I suppose that's one reason I never really engaged in all the competimommy garbage. I certainly have my moments of doubt, but in general, I'm pretty comfortable with my abilities as a parent. Great post.

krista | 4:50 AM

I love you Rebecca!

I stopped reading quite a lot of the blogs I was reading before for this very reason.

I do have guilt, I do think I am a bad parent, I do self-deprecate in my mind- and sometimes on my blog- But I find that behaviour just strengthens the habituation of behaving like what I consider to be a "bad parent".

It's like, by shining the spotlight on it, or by feeding myself with a diet of other people who are shining the spotlight on it, it only amplifies for me.

I used to have the kind of strong confidence you speak of when Aidan was little. I felt like the best mom. I knew I was making great decisions, parenting in a way I deemed "good"

Somehow though, when I had my second things came apart for me, and it became SO MUCH HARDER to be the mom I wanted to be, the mom I was.

And I fell into the self-deprecating trap. So I am climbing out of that now. Slowly but surely.

And I will write a post about what makes me an amazing parent. So THANK YOU for empowering me to empower myself!

metro mama | 5:15 AM

I love this. This has been bothering me about the blogosphere for a long time. It kind of makes me crazy that when when I write something angsty I get all kinds of feedback. When, I'm happy, much less.

We need to celebrate the good and share our success.

Megan | 5:43 AM

Right on, Sister! I'm a damn good mama.

And you know what? We're not only good Mothers, but good people. We love our babies and do our best to help them grow into amazing adults.

There are so many great Mothers! Why do so many feel so bad?

Keep up the great writing. We really feel the same about so many things, and it's great to feel like I have another gal out there a little like me! Thanks.

Elizabeth | 6:09 AM

Thank you for this, Rebecca. Thank you for giving me "permission" to admit that I am, in fact, an amazing parent in my own way. Here's the link to the post I wrote:

http://table4five.net/2007/05/02/in-my-own-way-i-am-an-amazing-parent/

Femme Fontanelle | 6:33 AM

Thanks for a great read (again!).

I agree entirely that it can be hard to say "I'm good at this", but like you, I have the confidence of knowing that whether it is said out loud or not; as a mother, I rock, I really rock!

Kelly | 6:38 AM

Great post! Here's my response. And you're right...it's harder that it looks.

http://kellyology.blogspot.com/2007/05/i-am-bomb.html

Fairly Odd Mother | 6:43 AM

I promise I'll get on topic later but I need to know: Are those your eyes??? Good god, they are unbelievably green! Anyway, that is totally unrelated but I had to say it. OK, continue to talk amongst yourselves. . .I'll ponder the deeper meaning of your post shortly.

Rebecca | 6:53 AM

A-fuckin-men! Loved loved loved the post - it was longgggg overdue!!

Things that make me a great mom to my son:
I wrestle when the mood strikes us
I make cupcakes just cause
I play hooky sometimes just so we can spend the day at the water park (in the summer)
I share my bed (and tissue with lotion) when he is even the tiniest bit sick
I wake him up with his favorite back scratcher every morning (my nails! lol)

There are days where I second guess myself or question my ability to do this job and not screw it all up, but those days are far outnumbered by the days where I don't even think twice about things - I just go with my gut and enjoy life with my little love muffin (i.e. son)!

Deanna (domestic chicky) | 7:25 AM

Great post Rebecca...YOU are a great mom...I am a great mom...I love that I can turn a wailing banshee into a giggling puddle in no time flat. I love that I can make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich look like it was made at the Cordon Bleu. I love that I can make even a trip to the grocery store seem like an adventure. I love that I have given my boys have an amazing sense of curiosity and humor. I love them more with every minute they become people...and I love you too Rebecca for helping me remember that...

xo
Dee

binkytown | 7:31 AM

I want to do this, I really do. But as I was driving to work this morning I was thinking about how I really want to be someone else just for one day. Not forever, just long enough to feel something other than what it feels like to go head to head with my terrible- two over Every.Single.Thing.All.Day.Long.

The reality is that my blog is the only place to put that. As much as it's difficult to boast about my good parenting skills on line, it's much harder to tell people I'm surrounded by all day that I don't know very well that some days I feel like being a mother is like serving out a prison sentance. Albeit a prison sentance with better food and a more comfortable bed..

In the Trenches of Mommyhood | 7:32 AM

Amen. I AM a good mother, dammit. I'm proud that I can juggle motherhood, a part-time job, running a household, including being a maid, chef, ass-wiper,and snot-sucker, and manage to be intrigued with and inspired by three little boys on a daily basis. This is my life and I'm PROUD of it.
http://sarahviz.blogspot.com
In the Trenches of Mommyhood

ali | 9:03 AM

i definitely feel like i'm a good mother...but it's much easier to look at all the ways that i could be a better mother.

shel | 9:03 AM

thank you for posting this! in my time as a nanny, i have seen this lack of confidence play out often.

no one says it's a 100% easy gig. it takes work. but if you are good at that work and take pride in what you do, then let it be known!

Her Bad Mother | 9:11 AM

Well, for me, calling myself a BAD mother is just one way of struggling to be self-reflective about being a GOOD mother. I know that I'm a good mother, but you're right that I probably don't celebrate that enough. Probably because there's not as much fodder in GOOD mothering.

The Bad Mother on my shoulder is my muse. Is that wrong?

(Gonna write about this one, fo sho)

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 9:18 AM

HBM-- I always thought Bad meant good, like "rad" "her rad mother"... I was actually playing on the "Bad Parent" column on babble. Is it so hard to have a Good Parent column? Sigh...

To all who posted already? Wow. I can't wait to dig in. You're all awesome.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 9:20 AM

Oh and eyes are mine, FOD. Word.

BOSSY | 9:32 AM

Bossy can't say - first she is waiting to read the eventual Psychiatric Report.

(but knowing you have great instincts is really empowering)

jennster | 10:38 AM

i have found that too- that people like to be able to relate to the struggles.. it's almost what makes you more likeable. i don't really have that many struggles, you know? *knocks on wood*
i'm happy and cheerful and i think i rock. and there's nothing wrong with that, and it's not truly my issue if no one else can relate to that. know what i mean?

Anonymous | 11:19 AM

you are hot. and you know i agree like crazy. xobmc

toyfoto | 11:36 AM

Great post. .. and I even manged to bang out a few words by way of response. Thanks for making us think.

Emma | 12:50 PM

I am a good mother. Yes, I am a good mother! :)

Thanks for a thought-provoking and positive post. I will let you know when me and the kids have scribbled on the public bathroom wall. Hehe.

Anonymous | 1:10 PM

the reason we can't admit that we are good (at anything) is because others are just waiting to point the finger and say "YOU SUCK!" but when we say we suck first then others say "NO you don't! YOU"RE GREAT!" I think we are all afraid of being torn down that we just tear ourselves down first.

That being said, i am a bad cook, i am unorganized but i have an infinite amount of patience. i let my kids make messes- and i teach them to clean them up. i don't yell when they spill things or drop things because i understand that accidents happen. i let them help me cook even if it takes an hour to make a ten minute meal. yeah, i'm pretty great :) ~jjlibra

Jennifer | 1:16 PM

You could not have said it better! Amazing post.

Andrea | 1:53 PM

Very insightful! This may have been said before but I didn't read through every comment. I honestly think parents are finding they have a voice when it comes to the down and dirty of parenting, that it's no longer taboo to admit when we're pulling out our hair and need a break or cannot take one more spoonful of food thrown at our heads or public tantrum. We aren't all pretending to be June Cleaver anymore and the actual admitting of our faux pas is liberating.

But I believe there is a backswing to this kind of thinking now, that yes we're free to admit that we had to put the baby in the crib and walk away from the crying for a minute to gather our composure but if we're in the company of others who are just as freely admitting their parenting flaws, it does sound boastful to say, "Well, we had a good day today and I got Junior to eat all his peas!" Even if it's a big deal that things went well, people suddenly don't feel okay admitting that they may have a handle on this parenting thing.

For this five seconds anyway, until Junior changes and we have to start from scratch figuring them out all over again.

But I think the fear of sounding like a Sanctimommy keeps us from announcing when we have good moments in parenting and helps us proclaim our bad moments more loudly and more often. It's not that we lack confidence in our parenting all the time. We just lack the confidence in our acquaintanceships and relationships with others to know how we're going to be perceived by them, and if it's the risk of being boastful instead of confident, then we take the easy road and just stay quiet.

Anonymous | 2:39 PM

I loved, loved, LOVED this post. It really made me think about why I am always ranting on my blog about how terrible a mother I am and how I surely don't deserve these kiddos of mine! I also really enjoyed reading everyones comments, Andrea I totally agree with everything you said. I think the pendulum has swung in that we are no longer trying to pretend that we are the BESTEST mom in the world. We are confident enough to admit our failings, admit our "bad mommy moments" and secure enough in ourselves to recognize that we aren't perfect..and that it's OKAY not to be perfect. However, the fallout from this momentum of self reflection, striving to be a great parent and digging deep within to question our actions, our behaviors and our parenting style has led us to be afraid of happily and confidently recognizing when we ARE doing it right. We are afraid of sounding obnoxious, arrogant and quite honestly, perhaps unrealistic to others? Whenever I start thinking to myself: "hey, i'm doing a good job here, i'm a good mom!", I immeditaley shoot myself down going: "oh yeah? well if you're such a good mom, why did you yell at them yesterday, or why didn't you let them make a big mess of playdoh right before dinner just because you didn't want to have to deal with the mess, and why did you skip a couple pages in their nighttime books to get them to bed earlier because you were tired etc..." and on and on... It seems the minute I start to feel confident, I reflect on the many ways I have somehow "failed" them. It IS pathetic and stupid and yet I fall into that trap all the time. Interestingly, when I was just a mom to my little boy, I was 100% confident, as a new mother!? Weird. I felt good about my parenting, my choices, my advocating for my child, being there for him, being patient, you name it. I was proud of myself. When #2 came around, I really questioned myself and my abilities. I doubted myself more than ever and felt as though most days it'd be a miracle if I didn't somehow harm my children by yelling at them or losing it from exhaustion and frustration. Things definitely changed after #2 came around. Only now am I starting to feel good about my parenting again (they are 2 and 4) and finding that self confidence that I'm doing pretty good dammit. There is definitely a wide range of middle ground between being in complete denial about your poor parenting skills and being so self depricating that you can't feel the tiniest good about your parenting. Thanks to your post I am recognizing my tendency to feel rotten about my parenting rather than feel proud about how well I've managed thus far. I really needed that. Thank you Rebecca for a healthy dose of reality and perspective that was MUCH needed in my life. You rock sista friend. I love ya!!!

Anonymous | 2:39 PM

OOPS, forgot to sign that last one, it's your pal Pascale! :)

Shannon | 2:46 PM

Recently, my sister and I had a conversation about how our mom had never told me she thought I was a good mother. My sister asked why it was so important to me that someone else tell me what I already know? Then a few days later my mom told me in conversation that she thought I was the BEST mom, but that she shouldn't have to tell me that because I should know it. I realized that I SHOULD know it. I should see it in the way Caleb looks at me like I am a hero. I should see it when I have an incredibly challenging day with him, but manage to keep my cool, and we both come out better behaved and more loving at the day's end. I should see it in the joy and the giggles when I am playing swords with him for the 1,254,783 time in one day. . . let me tell you faking a dramatic fall to the ground at 27 weeks pregnant is no small task! I should know it when he gets hurt and no one else can console him. I have been paying attention recently and I do know it. I try not to dwell on the little mistakes, because honestly the good parenting moment outnumber the bad ones 100 fold.

the weirdgirl | 3:27 PM

THANK YOU for this post! This has been bugging me for a while. I will post about this, though be warned, I might divulge into some ranting. I have to second Metro Mama's comment. It sometimes feels like the "happy" parents get the short end of the stick.

Mom101 | 5:37 PM

This is brilliant. The "I'm fat" analogy - spot on.

I've never really said I'm a bad parent. Only that I don't know what I'm doing, which is entirely true. But I think through a combination of instincts, common sense and maybe even luck, I'm raising a great kid. If that's not evidence that I'm doing something right, then I don't know what is.

I love this post Rebecca. Really really astute.

Bev | 6:05 PM

Wow! An amazing accurate post! Really hits the nail on the head, doesn't it!

Just wanted to let you know, I Blogtipped your site on my Bev's Bits blog today! Check it out!

Bev

Maternal Mirth | 6:40 PM

I know you have spare time to do this like I have spare cash in my checking account, but here's my very own personal mommy-love-fest. Ironically, I wrote this on this past Saturday ... looks like we were on the same page, sista. That or looking at the same webpages ...

http://maternalmirth.blogspot.com/2007/04/ups-downs-parenthood.html

reluctant housewife | 7:16 PM

This is an awesome post. I'm in total agreement.

I know I'm being lazy when I write about the bad parts of parenting. You know, complaining is pretty darn easy.

Anonymous | 7:32 PM

Super post for sure. I know, the way you do, that I am good mother--no, make that a great mother. I knew it when my children were born 26 months apart. I knew it when my son almost died at 6 months. I knew it when he lived. I knew it when my children were the ones who had empathy for others. And I know it now. I know it now when my daughter is helping those afflicted with spinal disease. I know it now when my son shows compassion for those who struggle on the streets. My children have grown into adults that I am so proud of and I think, no I know that that has something to do with the kind of mother I am. You know it now with your son, and you will know it too when he grows into the kind of adult that makes the world a better place. Celebrate what you are as a mother. I am a teacher and I know that there are far too few children who are blessed with great mothers.

Emery Jo | 8:14 PM

YES!! Rebecca, this is crazy. Because before I read this post, I had just finished writing my last post called 'Bravery'.

It's about how I am a good mother because I honor my son (and myself) with my words.

AMAZING!

mo-wo | 10:10 PM

yes yes yes. I love the I'm fat analogy. So true. I believe I already posted on this in a fashion:

http://motherwoman.blogspot.com/2006/08/post-partum-happiness.html

the weirdgirl | 2:03 AM

My post on this subject. Thanks for opening up the floor so some of us can vent. (For me it's been coming a long time. I've got to stop holding back.)

http://weirdgirl.typepad.com/home/2007/05/a_rant_for_happ.html

JessicaY | 6:21 AM

I am an amazing mother because I recognize my own faults and try to better myself every day. I know in my heart my children don't want for anything they really need. Not always having the best clothes, toys, vacations, a big house..those are not the things they will remember about their childhood. They will remember having a mother who loved them, who told them so ten times a day. They will remember the hugs and kisses and tickles and hours and hours of building towers of Legos on the floor. As much as I doubt myself and my parenting abilities at times, I never, ever doubt that I love them more than anything on this Earth.

My name is Kate B. | 8:39 AM

Word up. Like always, you hit it right on.

I have read your words for a long time but have rarely, if ever, written a reply. Now that I am a blogger, I understand how necessary it is to get that feedback.

So here is my response:

http://katebhandmade.blogspot.com/2007/05/good-mom.html

April | 10:08 AM

This is my first time reading your blog and this topic hit home today. I'm feeling a lot of guilt for some reason today, but after reading this, I am reminded that I am doing a great job damn it! I love how I parent and I'm a great mom. Thank you so much for reminding me of that. We all need it from time to time.

My blog:
http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=35738401&blogID=260531734&MyToken=0c917cc0-1c2d-4836-871d-80732a4242ea

Bev | 10:14 AM

Okay, I did it! I wrote my own post about being a good parent! I can't get the link to work in the Create A Link.... so here it is:
http://bevsbits.blogspot.com/2007/05/im-good-parent.html

Have an awesome day!

Bev

Karen | 11:55 AM

Thanks for sharing this. I also am a good mom, and I wrote about it on my blog today. http://needsnewbatteries.blogspot.com/2007/05/local-mom-holding-it-together-just-fine.html

Chef's Widow | 12:34 PM

You should always be inspired by the greatness of your motherhood. EVen when I think I am being a bad mother, I know deep down that I'm not. I 'm just crazy. I have a toddler.

Love the blog. Inspires me on a daily basis. Your words ring true with so many women, so many mommies. Cheers.


And here is my post...
Sweet Mamacita!

Molly | 12:56 PM

http://nohipsters.blogspot.com/2007/05/oh-my-goodness.html

My post. This is my big blog comin' out party--my first link to it in the outside world. :)

Erin | 1:59 PM

What a great post. In some ways, the comments are reading like the portrayals of AA-type meetings on TV.

Hi. I'm Erin. And I'm a good mom.

http://the-looney-bin.blogspot.com/2007/05/good-mom.html

Thanks for having the courage to be the first one to say this! :)

Housewife | 8:47 PM

Bah!!!!

A sharpie... gonna buy a sharpie... and a new camera too!!!!!

You dared me and I'm gonna graffiti this town!

momomax | 10:19 PM

you know, you rock.
I posted something about this after I read the babble version. it's now late late late, and I want to thank you for being a think instigator.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 11:47 PM

April, just wanted to let you know I couldn't read/link your blog because I couldn't see your myspace profile! ACK!

Queen Heather | 3:56 AM

Thank you for such a wonderful, inspiring post. This has been so great to read in so many ways for me!

http://queenofshake-shake.blogspot.com/

toyfoto | 5:10 AM

An excerpt from mine:

"... I know I am a good mother. I feel a kind of confidence – especially in my early days of motherhood – I had not known previously. 'I COULD do this,' I told myself. I was patient. I was resourceful. I was as fearless as I’d ever been. I could admit to NOT knowing and still feel my way to a place of understanding."

http://ittybit.blogspot.com/2007/05/not-so-alone-after-all.html

The Mommy | 8:42 AM

Thanks for the inspiration to toot my own horn and bask in my good mommy glory. #2 will be here in about 3 weeks and it's nice to take the time to reassure myself that I know what I'm doing.

http://raisingtheboy.blogspot.com/2007/05/oh-yeah-im-good.html

Kyran | 9:05 AM

The blog-o-bahn is strewn with wrecks and rubberneckers. And then something empowering and affirming like this comes along and lifts up a whole bunch of people with it.

My thumb's stuck out for a ride: here's a piece from earlier this year, Riding the Short Bus to Redemption

Lovely post, Rebecca.

Coma Girl | 9:06 AM

I am new to all of this and I loved your post. Here is my take on it:

http://gdcorwin.blogspot.com/2007/05/you-dont-have-to-be-called-mom-to-be.html

Thank you for letting us praise ourselves.

Juggle Jane | 11:00 AM

Thanks for a great post - as always.

Depositing my 2 cents:
http://welcometothejuggle.blogspot.com/2007/05/i-rule.html

L.A. Daddy | 4:17 PM

I make her laugh.

I make her smile.

I make her think.

I make her happy.

That's my job and I'm stickin' with it...

Heather | 8:56 PM

Thanks for this post. It's wonderful. You are so right. I'm an expert mama and I blogged about it today. Thanks for the encouragement!

Here's my post:
http://intedomine.blogspot.com/2007/05/good-mama-real-mama-expert-mama.html

AuburnGalAlways | 10:04 AM

Yes, you said it well. I think it's more fun to make fun of ourselves than to be so full of sunshine and unicorn and fuzzy kitten love over our parenting skills. After reading Jennifer's post along this theme - at Playgroupsarenoplaceforchildren.blogspot.com, I have written my own post about what a wonderful mom I am.

http://augalinfp.blogspot.com/2007/05/not-mom-of-year.html

Shawn | 10:51 AM

Great post! Love this idea. I have a post up at www.letterstomydaughters.com. Thanks for the inspiration to feel good about ourselves.

Major Bedhead | 7:51 PM

Thanks so much for putting this idea out there. I know I get too caught up in what I'm doing wrong that I never take time to acknowledge what I'm doing right, and doing well.

Here's my contribution:
http://thebookishone.blogspot.com/2007/05/maybe-im-not-so-bad.html

lala | 8:15 PM

Thanks for the great reminder!
I am a great mother because I truly love being a mom. I am many many more things besides a mom, but this title is the one I am most proud of.

Lawyer Mama | 10:49 AM

Here's one for you. I loved this post! I don't necessarily agree that we shouldn't write about the bad stuff (I don't think you're saying that anyway), but I definitely need to make an effort to write more about the good.

http://lawyermama.blogspot.com/2007/05/good-bad-and-mommy-blogging.html

PunditMom | 11:17 AM

You inspire me, as always!

http://punditmom1.blogspot.com/2007/05/it-depends-on-definition-of-good.html#links

GHD | 12:30 PM

Thank you for such a great post. You really hit the nail on the head with this one, Girl.

Here is my response. Sorry, it took me so long. This was harder than it seems :-)

http://quietlyshoutinginside.blogspot.com/2007/05/mommy-youre-best.html

Keri | 7:34 PM

Jumping on the bandwagon of good parents:

http://jimikiwi.blogspot.com/

=)

Heather | 7:48 PM

I had to mull this over for a while. I wrote the post in my head several times. Then what I actually wrote was nothing like what I was writing in my head...but anyway here is the link to mine:
http://coolzebras.blogspot.com/2007/05/best-mommy.html

Christina | 4:43 AM

Thanks for a great, thought-provoking post. It spawned a post of my own as well:

http://amommystory.blogspot.com/2007/05/its-ok-to-be-good-parent.html

Karen Rani | 12:13 PM

Here is mine Rebecca:

http://www.troll-baby.com/2007/05/09/africa-update-now-with-tits/

I hated breastfeeding.

I hope I've empowered a new mom out there with this post, because I know I'm not alone.

Amanda | 1:39 PM

I just wrote on this yesterday. Who knew that doing the right thing could hurt so much? Or that all the obnoxious platititudes about what you'll realize on the other side as you become a parent would have some truth in them. I'll be damned if I know how I am doing in the big picture, I am just trying to make the right decisions each day. Thanks for opening this conversation.
Here's the link:
http://lifewithbriar.blogspot.com/2007/05/tantrums-and-daydreams.html

Kira | 7:53 PM

Hmm. Wow, I can tell this post is going to resonate with me for a while.
For me, when I bemoan my parenting, it's usually because I truly feel that I've failed my kids in some way. That, right there, is probably the most painful thing in my world. I HAVE failed them at times.
But the truth is, yes, I am quite good at this job I've devoted myself to for nearly 12 years. My boys are strong and kind and normal...ish. I adore them. And for much of their childhood so far it was just me on duty.
I think when I'm doing a good job I tend to enjoy them. When I fall short, I berate myself.
It never occurred to me that it might not be helpful to tear myself down like that.

Jen Magnuson | 11:11 AM

Oh my God, amen! In my experience, I fit in so much better with other moms when I denigrate myself, joke about what a "loser mom" I can be, and of course, point out the various disgusting parts of my body. I'd like to say that I am a great mom, because I nursed all four of my kids even though I got severe, hospitalization-requiring mastitis each time, and with my third, he bit so hard into my nipple that I still bear a crescent shaped scar, nearly five years later. I also don't hang the kids out of the car window like windsocks when they're all bickering.

http://lottakids.blogspot.com/2007/05/real-moms-nurse-while-blogging.html

Maternal Mirth | 1:35 PM

Since I am a stepmom as well, I thought it needed equal consideration :)

http://maternalmirth.blogspot.com/2007/05/stepmom.html

melody | 12:57 AM

My post is up

http://slurpinglife.typepad.com/slurping_life/2007/05/please_dont_let.html

Mrs. Chicky | 5:25 AM

I did one too.

http://chickychickybaby.blogspot.com/2007/05/motherhood-means-sometimes-having-to.html

Seattle Mamacita | 10:00 PM

I too have been turned off by the momoirs in this vain I guess that is why we gravitate to the blogs we choose to respond to. I'm inspired by your challenge...I'm a teacher and thereby always thoughtful maybe too much so about my parenting but like you I think I'm raising an amazing kid...check out a future post in this direction..
www.mamamianosabia.blogspot.com

xmas | 12:28 AM

You're totally right...Outside of my closest friends, I don't think I ever really do praise myself much. I am very open to talking about my hardships with my son, but I guess I've been trained by this culture of ours to feel like if say something good about myself or myself as a mother, then I am bragging. But also, the biggest reason I don't go around saying I'm a good parent if because I fear that other mothers will think by doing that, I am passing judgment on them and the way they do things.

Here's a link to my 'good mom' post. Thanks for giving me something to ponder.

http://xmas711.blogspot.com/2007/05/good-mother.html

Mama Luxe | 2:12 PM

What a great "movement" to start...here's my post:

http://mamasaga.blogspot.com/2007/05/good-mama-great-mama.html

Cynicism is all well and good when we're grad students or hipsters or what have you...and self-deprecation makes for funny blogging and good bonding...but sometimes I think we need to be earnest and joyful, especially as parents, too!

"Mean Mom" | 2:15 PM

Good post! You can become confident by first ACTING/BEHAVING confident! Pretty soon, it'll become a habit. I'm a great parent. I love being a mother. I can't wait to be a grandmother! I enjoy parenting. Even if I am a "mean" mom!

Trust your self. You sound like an awesome parent!

Julie
http://askmeanmom.blogspot.com

Deepti | 7:56 PM

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Hannah | 11:27 AM

I feel like a bad mum today because I am on the internet whilst my son is playing downstairs - a common occurrence. I found your blog by Googling "I am not a good mother".

To be honest, some days I feel I am a great mother, other days I feel I am lousy. I understand what you say about it somehow being more acceptable to say "I am a rubbish mummy". After all, no one likes a smug sanctimummy, do they? You know, the kind who started breastfeeding before the placenta was out and continued until the kid was in college. The kind who cooks everything from scratch and who is constantly interested in their child's development. I love my son - he is my life. However, I am not necessarily interested in every aspect of his development and I would rather watch TV than teach him about the universe. Tomorrow, however, I might feel differently!