When I joined the parents club a few years ago, I was blindsided by some truths about parenting that no one told me about. You can’t really comprehend them until you’ve actually been there, but no one warned me about them either. Don’t get me wrong, motherhood is one the greatest things that has happened to me, but it also happens to be one of the most difficult and probably the longest challenge of my life.
Whether you are a first-time parent, or just a parent looking to identify with some other parenting truths, check out my post below. Often times, we only learn about the beautiful side of being a parent because people only share the positive things on social media, but I’m here to tell you about some ugly truths about parenting that no one talks about. Check out my list of hard cold parenting facts that not even your own parents warn you about.
1. The parents club is more like the hypocrites club
They always say, don’t judge a book by its cover, but let me tell you this – parents judge other parents more than ever. I try not to do it, but deep down, I know I make comments about other people’s parenting skills sometimes. When my daughter comes home and tells me about so-and-so did this and that in class, I secretly wonder what his/ her parents are like at home, and what they teach their kid.
2. You will have less patience for children
Before I had children, I would be able to sit with a child for hours and play or do things with them. After having children, I realize that these little human beings are capable of doing things that I simply can’t understand. For example, why on earth would they wipe those yucky hand on every surface at home? Why? Or why on earth would they draw everywhere in the house? I find that I have very little patience nowadays to deal with my own kids, let alone other children. Perhaps I am simply exhausted from having to spend 24/7 with my own toddlers, so whenever I have any free time, I would hide from kids.
3. Lying to your own children is OK
When I was pregnant, I vowed to be always truthful to my future kids so they can learn things the correct way. Well, I just broke my own promise, again and again… When my toddler asked me for ice-cream the other day, I just blatantly told her we ran out of ice-cream at home and have to wait till the next grocery trip. She reacts to this answer better than a “No sweetie, you can’t have ice-cream” answer. There are some lies that would make me feel guilty, but some I would just brush off immediately and move on. Let’s be real – lies are part of parenthood.
4. You will sleep again, but it’s never the same
I used to sleep 8 hours a day. But since my kids were born, I now thrive on 5 to 6 hours a day. I can see this happening for the rest of my life, unless my kids miraculously sleeps through every single night without any cries, or that they become self-sufficient when they wake up at 5am. Nowadays, even if I manage to get to bed at a decent time, it’s always never a deep kind of sleep. Even if my daughter’s monitor accidentally unplugs, I can sense suspicion in that deep silence. I read somewhere that a mother’s brain is wired differently. Becoming a parent is not only life-altering, but also brain-altering. We are hardwired to respond to our babies and kids no matter the circumstances.
5. Sick leave does not come with the job
Even if the whole family is sick (and that includes you), you are not allowed to rest. Pop those painkillers and Tylenol because you will have kids asking you for milk or food or to play even if you are laying on the floor because you can’t move due to the flu.
6. Yoga pants, sweat pants and sweatshirts will become a necessary part of your wardrobe
Throw out the lacy and sexy undergarments or clothes. Anything with elastic waistband will become an integral part of your wardrobe. Leggings will become so comfortable and you will start to wonder why you even bother with other clothes. Mothers are constantly on the go, and comfort becomes our number one priority.
7. Some days you will hate being a parent
I’ve had a fair share of these days when my kids are simply out of control. You will feel like being a mother is not as fulfilling as you had imagined it to be. Well, it just comes with the job.
8. You will parent the way your parents did
Growing up, I told myself that I would do a better job than my parents. I try to make a conscientious effort to not make the same mistakes my parents did, but I slowly progressed to the kind of things that my parents did or said, like catching myself saying, “Little Missy, finish your food or I’ll take away TV time”. Gasp, I have become my mother.
9. Nothing embarrasses you anymore
I used to judge moms who breastfeed in public, or parents whose kids having a massive meltdown in the store. Well, I’m one of those parents now. My kids can cry all they want, but they are never getting that expensive toy in the store, and I will just carry on with my shopping.
10. You will learn to appreciate the times when you can poop and shower in peace
Taking a 10-minute, uninterrupted shower is a luxury these days. I keep the door unlocked just in case my kids need to come in during emergencies, but they overuse this privilege way too much. My youngest especially love walking in and out of the bathroom when I’m taking a shower. Or when those days when I need to use the potty, my toddlers would be banging on the bathroom door or need something immediately at that moment. Say goodbye to your privacy.
11. The backseat of your
luxury car will become very gross
For the longest time, I held back on feeding my kids in the car, but you will soon come to realize that it’s a necessity. No matter the distance, I prepare snacks for all the car rides we take. Well-fed kids means happy kids, but that also means that there will be spilled juice, milk or crushed Cheerios on the floor of the car. Even with older kids, there will be smelly sports gear or greasy wrappers from that cheese burger that they just had.
12. You will become a human trash can
Children are picky eaters. Unless it involves candies, sweet things or their favorite food, there will always be leftover food. If you’re like me and you do not like to waste food, be prepared to be their human trash can. I do draw a line there though – I do not eat their food if my kids are sick. I just can’t take that risk.
13. Life changes more than you expect
I used to have dreams of reaching the height of my career when I’m in my thirties, but not only it didn’t happen, I chose to take a back seat at work. Some things just have to be put on the back burner. However, that is not to say that I do not enjoy parenthood. Even though parenting is tough, it is also one of the most fulfilling experience in life. There are days when I want to hide from my kids, but I love my kids all the same. They say that kids grow up fast, and it will. So enjoy it while it lasts. Very soon, your little baby will leave for college and the empty nest syndrome will be real.
What are some of the parenting truths that you would like share with others? Leave a comment below and share with the rest of us!