Healthy Living
Opinion

I’m a Mean Mom

mother, being a mother, rules
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I have just seven months of experience being a mom, and I realize just how little expertise that gives me on the subject. I have yet to help my baby through potty training, school troubles, puberty—heck, she doesn’t even have teeth yet! But as time goes on and I prepare for what’s to come, I’ve been thinking. I’m pretty sure I’m going to be a mean mom.

What it Means to be a Mean Mom

There’s no need to call child services, just hear me out. To me, being a mean mom means showing my daughter tough love. It means being gentle, but stern. It means being smart. It means being firm and fair. It means teaching my daughter the difference between right and wrong.  It means doing everything in my power to prepare my daughter for the reality of life ahead of her.

I’m lucky my own mom is such a great example of motherhood. I’m thankful now for everything she taught me over the years, even though at the moment I thought she was the meanest mom in the universe. And that’s the kind of mom I want to be.

The Kind of Mean Mom I Plan to Be

Here’s the start to my growing list of how I plan to raise my daughter:

  • I plan to make my daughter clean up her toys as soon as she’s done with the game.
  • As soon as she’s old enough, I will give her chores to help out around the house.
  • I will teach her to cook and have her make meals for the family from time to time.
  • I will send her outside instead of watching TV.
  • I will teach her not to ask for things in the store, and I won’t buy her everything she thinks she wants.
  • I will say no to her. Probably a lot.
  • I won’t let her eat outside the dining table.
  • I will enforce an early bedtime.
  • I will make the family rules very clear to her, and punish her anytime she breaks them.
  • I won’t give her what she wants when she cries.
  • I won’t let her whine to get her way.
  • I’ll take her to practice (piano, dance, soccer, whatever she chooses) even if she doesn’t want to go every time.
  • I won’t let her eat a whole bowl of candy.
  • I’ll make her wear a helmet even if she hates it.
  • I will pull the car over if her seat belt isn’t buckled.
  • I’ll make her say good night, even if she’s angry.

The Risks of Being a Mean Mom

Now, that being said, I am fully aware that my list will likely change over time. It’s one thing to say what type of mom I’ll be and quite another to actually become her. But that’s okay. As my daughter grows up and I start to get a better grasp on what being a mother is really like, I’ll learn from my mistakes and make changes for the better.

And I realize that this list may not make me the fun mom or the cool mom. My daughter will probably get mad at me once or twice, or a whole bunch of times. I might not make the decision she thinks is right or the one that she wants all the time. But I will love her more than the world, and tell her that every day. I will care for her and be there for her no matter what happens. I will do my best to teach her how to live life in the best way possible. And if that makes me a mean mom, then that’s the kind of mom I want to be.

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Emilyn Gil

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