More than one Psycho Mom

Writing last week about DD as “Psycho Mom” reminded me of a memory from when I was a young, excitable mother with small children.

We lived in an old house in a small town.  One of the houses behind us had recently been sold and I had seen the mother out in the backyard with her children for the first time earlier that day.

When Hubby got home from work, I earnestly told him that I was worried about what kind of people had moved into our neighborhood because I had heard the mother out in the yard screaming at her children!

Hubby was still too young to have learned the benefit of keeping a poker face, no matter what your wife says.  So he looked at me incredulously and then started laughing.  Then, just to drive home his point, he said, “So you don’t think you ever scream at your children?”

You might think that I would have been offended, but it hit me like a ton of bricks that he was right!  Gosh, did I sound like that woman sometimes?  I guess I did.  That was a real “ah ha” moment in my life.  I won’t say I never screamed at my children again, but I certainly was more aware that I was doing it and, I think, saved it for the most “heinous” of their “crimes”.

One thing did make me feel better.  The next time we were at Hubby’s parent’s house, I told his mom this story and how bad it make me feel to realize that I sometimes screamed at my children.  And then that lovely, sweet lady said something that really made me feel better.  She said, “Oh, I screamed at my kids sometimes when they were little too.  Don’t feel too bad about that.”  I was shocked to imagine her doing something like that and, in truth, maybe she didn’t do it but just said she did to make me feel better.  But, whichever was the case, it did help.

I had the best mother-in-law in the world, who may have told  her very excitable daughter-in-law a little white lie in order to make her feel better, but may have actually yelled at her children too!

So, if DD yells at her children, maybe she can blame the genetic predisposition she got from both sides of our family.

6 Responses to More than one Psycho Mom

  1. Hilary says:

    I know very few mothers who I’ve not heard yell at their kids at one time or another. Thankfully, I know very few who yell over everything. Most of us fall somewhere in the middle. Kids CAN be annoying! ;)

  2. Amy Ostrowski says:

    I heard the dinner bell. I think we all scream at one time or another. I think it is part of our job. We just need to keep it in check. :)

  3. Janet Ettensohn says:

    Sometimes I felt I sounded worse than the child I was trying to shush! That was my wake up call to mellow out.

  4. Linda says:

    I love your Hubby’s reaction to what you told him about the mother next door. It reminds me of the time you told me that your sister was very opinionated. :)

  5. Sandra says:

    Hillary — Yes, the little angels can be annoying at times. It’s good I’m through that child-rearing phase of my life — it didn’t play to my strengths. :)

    Amy — Yes, I think I’ve made it around the block! :) I really admire moms who don’t seem to ever lose their temper, but I think they may be a minority. :)

    Janet — I can’t picture you losing your cool with your kids. I guess that just proves that children can occasionally bring out the worst in all of us! :)

    Linda — That really was funny when you said that. Did the wounds heal? :)

  6. Vicki says:

    My oldest daughter was our only child for 7.5 years–then her brother arrived, and three years later, another daughter. I thought I was the perfect mother till the last two arrived. They tested my patience like nothing you’ve ever seen! I know I yelled at them in front of the neighbors! Believe me, Sandra, the youngest girl was so sneaky and would climb chairs to undo door latches and hid in the bushes. Our sweet retired neighbors would point to where she was hiding! Some days I thought I would not survive the stress!

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