17 Feb
Mommy Is Off The Clock!

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My husband generally comes home from work after our 2-year old is in bed. By then I am DONE dealing with my son for the day, as I’ve just spent the past 12 hours putting up with his tantrums, his whines, his pickiness, and all the other things 2-year olds do on a daily basis. I love my son, but at the end of the day I just want to be ME again. Yet when my husband gets home all he wants to talk about is the kid.   I’ve tried gently telling my husband that as adorable as it is to listen to him mimic our son’s whiny chants of “Maaaamaaaaa! Maaaaaamaaaaa!” I’m not really in the mood anymore, and that my parenting duties are over once the kid is in bed. But he just doesn’t seem to get it.

How can I save my sanity without making my husband feel like I don’t appreciate his interest in our son?

Signed,

Maaaaamaaaaaa!

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Dear Maaamaaaa,

Boy, does your question bring back nightmares. I mean memories! Ahem. Yes, it brings back such cherished memories. (Of hell on earth.)

Every stage of childrearing can be challenging, but there is something about the toddler years that makes every mother dream of being a gorgeous runway model, strutting the latest fashion in straitjackets on the catwalk. Which, of course, is located in a padded room that the hospital staff cleans for you. And they bring you meals too! That you don’t have to cook! Oh, lovely, lovely dream.

You’re right, though. It is good that your husband obviously loves your son and is so interested in his day, so let’s not discourage that. Yet when he gets home from work you don’t mimic the annoying traits of his coworkers, so there has to be some give and take here.

In today’s high-tech world there are many ways you can share the joys of all-day tantrums. This is why stay-at-home moms need smart phones; you can record all of that crap on video then replay it for your husband when he gets home. You could even do it live with Face Time, if he’s really feeling left out of experiencing 20 tantrums before lunch.   Before long, your husband won’t even ask about the kid and you’ll be like every other wife pretending to be interested in what happened at his office.

But don’t forget old school methods, either. Leave him home with your 2-year-old during the day on the weekend while you get out and away. I used to LIVE for those Saturdays of solitary window shopping and receiving 12 phone calls from my husband with a screaming kid in the background, asking me what to do. (Once my husband realized every frantic phone call on my “off” time meant another 30 minutes I’d stay away, he stopped calling. Okay, maybe he stopped because I went batshit crazy on him in TJ Maxx for calling me.)

Anyway, take a deep breath (of glue) and remember this stage will pass too. Then go get a smart phone with Face Time capabilities.

Signed,

Heather, TMH

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16 Feb
Help! My Daughter Has a Friend Who’s a Weirdo.

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My daughter has a new friend that is ruining her life. The friend, Simone, is a weirdo and I am worried she will be bringing my daughter into weirdo sanctums with her (exaggeration, but possible). Simone is not parented at all, is on the internet all hours of the night, has no restrictions on her computer or iPhone, and even refers to her parents by their first names! I suspect a drop-out and heroin addiction is on the horizon.

Together they are into Japanese anime and music(?!), drawing and oddball hats. Not to mention Simone has poor hygiene, she’s dumb and has the personality of a box of hair. Really, the kid isn’t smart (truth), my daughter is nearing brilliance (truth), I don’t understand the appeal.

What can I do to sabotage the relationship without letting my daughter know and what can I do t o keep myself from screaming, “Stop being a weirdo and put on your pearls and that fucking Lilly Pulitzer coat!”

Signed,

Don’t Let My Daughter Turn into a Simone

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Dear Don’t Let My Daughter Turn into a Simone,

First of all, I really wish I had Simone’s parents growing up. That would have been killer, living with the ‘rents Bob and Sue, playing games on my iPhone all night. Except, of course, there was no iPhone. Or computer. Or internet. Damn, I don’t even think the word processor had been invented. Crap, I’m old. Thankfully, this isn’t about me.

I would like to address the most troubling of your comments – regarding Lilly Pulitzer. Because no one should put Lilly Pulitzer on a pedestal.   All that pink and kelly green is just over the top. I’d rather dress like a box of hair.

Here is my best advice:   Act like Simone. Embrace Simone. Celebrate all things that are Simone. Because there is one thing I know for sure – if your daughter is a teenager, she currently thinks you’re very uncool (which I’m sure you’re totally not). So anything you adore will be tarnished immediately in her eyes. Start illustrating your own Japanese cartoons, put on your raspberry beret and stop showering so frequently. The bonding with Simone must begin right now to save your daughter’s soul. Just don’t then sell her soul to Lilly Pulitzer. Okay?

If your daughter is as smart as you say, she will not drop out of school or become a heroin addict. Even if Simone deems it the most righteous plan for the two of them. This Simone thing will be a phase, and a year from now, you will only have the markings from your daughter’s eyebrow ring to remember her by.

Good luck to you,

Kelcey, TMH

P.S. Totally kidding about the eyebrow ring. Those are so 2008.

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15 Feb
Bebe, Bebe, Bebe….No!

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

Should a grown woman shop at Bebe? You know, that skanky store in the mall? My friend buys all of her “going out” clothes there, and she looks like a desperate 40-year-old slut. What do you think?

Signed,

Act Your Age

___________________________

Dear Act Your Age,

True story: I once got completely stuck in a black tube skirt in a Bebe dressing room. Of course, this was when I was 25, so I had no pride and occasionally shopped there for “party wear,” but it was humiliating nonetheless. I still remember the look on the salesgirl’s disgusted face when she had to grab onto my ankles and yank on me like a pig stuck in a gunny sack. Seriously, I thought I’d be wearing that $59 piece of Lycra shit for the rest of my life. Or at least until the fire department showed up with a crowbar.

Ah, memories!

Anyway, where your friend wants to shop is completely up to her unless you’re A) her mother or B) paying her Visa bill. But for whatever reason, buying clothes designed by those genius Kardashians makes her feel good, so you have no right to tell her that she looks like a trampy Vegas barfly.

If you’re embarrassed to be around her when she’s all dolled up in a red bandage dress and f*ck me pumps, well, that maybe says more about you than her. So my advice is to just suck it up and deal with it because what someone wears is the least of your problems.

Unless you’re dating Jon Gosselin. That Ed Hardy crap is super nasty.

Best,

Wendi, TMH

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14 Feb
I’m Not Your Aunt, Kid

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My friend told her daughter to call me “Aunt Grace” which I think is ridiculous because I’m not her aunt, although my name is Grace. I explained that I’d like to be called by my first name but my friend insists that that’s disrespectful. Shouldn’t that be up to me?

Signed,

Grace

___________________________________________

Dear Grace,

I had this exact same conversation with  my friend Sue when my daughter was born. Or maybe when my daughter was old enough to talk, who the hell knows, those first years are a total blur.  See, like your friend, I thought that adding “Aunt” to a person’s name would be a sign of respect, and yet, I was too timid to try calling my boss Aunt Bob.  I thought I’d see how my daughter fared with my friend and model my behavior accordingly.  But my friend Sue would have none of it.  Apparently, she was some sort of a relationship purist and didn’t want to be called an aunt unless she was the actual aunt.  She asked to be called just Sue.

I’ll be honest–I did consider it odd at first.  Like your friend, I thought that children calling adults by their first names, without a title, was disrespectful.  But then I realized that foisting titles on people that they didn’t like was rude.

So talk to your friend.  Explain that it takes more than a title to convey respect and that you don’t consider being called an aunt one of its hallmarks.  Ask her if there is a title that the two of you can agree on – Miss Grace? Dis Grace? Her Royal Highness Grace?  Not Really Aunt Grace?

Remember that although I was able to see the light and drop the “aunt”, your friend may insist on the title.  And as a parent, it is her right to rear her child in the way that she sees fit.  In which case, you’ll have no choice but to bite your tongue.  And befriend me instead.

Best of luck,

Marinka, TMH

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11 Feb
Skkkkratch That Itch!

It’s Guest Post Friday! Hooray! Today we welcome a personal friend of mine, Heather aka Hokgardner! You may have seen her lovely pinks socks somewhere around the Internets, but she can always be found over on her wonderful blog that’s all about her four gorgeous children, her knitting and her awesome running. Heather is a truly delightful person, so let’s all show her some love today as she tackles a most unpleasant subject. Thanks, Heather! –Wendi

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

Last week, my son had a sleep over at his classmate “John’s” house. When I went to pick him up the next morning, John’s head and his two brothers’ heads were shaved. John said his mom did that “because of the little bugs,” but when I asked her about it, she just mumbled and changed the subject.

Two days later, my son was sent home from school with lice. I’m pissed off because not only does everyone in the class think he was the originator, but John’s mom could have prevented my son from getting it by canceling the sleepover. Should I call her up and bitch? Would that do any good?

Signed,

Lice Is So Not Nice

_____________________________

Dear Lice is So Not Nice,

Nothing strikes fear into the heart of a mother faster than the word “lice.” My head started itching in sympathy as I read your question, and I’ll probably be scratching compulsively all day.

Unfortunately, I am a veteran in the war against lice. Thanks to our school district’s new policy of not sending kids with lice home, our school has had wave after wave of infestation. My kids just finished their second round of lice since the school year began. I’ve been up to my elbows in laundry and lice shampoo for months.

First off, don’t worry about people thinking your son was the originator. They are certain to think that some other child brought the little bloodsuckers to school and give you a pass on it. And any parent who has had to deal with lice will look at you with sympathy; they know what you’re up against.

Second, it won’t do any good to bitch the other mom out. She is probably already mortified enough that her kids had lice. And when she hears that your son had lice, most likely as a result of spending the night at her house, she’ll be hoping the earth will swallow her up the next time she sees you.

Finally, some tips on getting rid of lice. The first time my kids got lice, I went the all-natural, chemical-free route: olive oil, vinegar rinses, cetaphil treatments. When the lice re-emerged six weeks later, I went for the chemicals big time. I suggest going straight to the lice shampoo and skipping the all-natural route. It’ll save time. You also need to be dedicated to spending every evening combing your kid’s hair with the special lice comb for at least 10 days. Don’t even bother with the cheap plastic comb that comes with the shampoo; get a good metal toothed one.  A good preventive measure is shampoo with tea tree oil in it. Lice can’t stand the stuff.

Good luck. Someday you’ll be able to look back at this and laugh without compulsively scratching your head.

And now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go wash my hair.

Sincerely,

Heather, Guest TMH

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