My Review of The Kids Will Be Fine by Daisy Waugh

thekidswillbefinecoverThe Kids Will Be Fine: Guilt-Free Motherhood for Thoroughly Modern Women by Daisy Waugh

I just received this book and started reading it. It has already won me over by liberal use of terms like “bullshit” and “piss,” the assertion–one that I have always agreed with–that in this modern age there is no reason in the world to deny painkillers to women in labor, and the section, “Don’t Call Me Mom,” which lights exactly on my number-one pet peeve as a mother. And I quote:

“There are only three people [one, in my case] in the world who can call me Mom, and they know who they are. To anyone else: call me ugly, for all I care. Call me anything at all. Just don’t call me Mom. I am not your mom. If I were, you’d have better manners.”

Yes, yes, dear God, yes. I’m so glad I’m not the only one who feels this way (this article convinced my husband to stop calling me “Mom”).

This book is chock full of common sense and cuts straight through the (dare I say it?) bullshit of modern parenting. Refreshing. And quite often funny too.

I agree with Ms. Waugh’s assertion that kids should just be left alone to do their kid things. Not every minute of every day has to be productive and educational. Sometimes when I hear my mother’s voice coming out of my mouth, laying down some pointless rule so I can feel parental, I do stop and think: “Why is this necessary? Can’t I just let him enjoy life? For most of his life, he’s going to be an adult with a job and responsibilities and chores and putting up with bullshit and feeling guilty for taking a few minutes out to lie in the grass or look at the stars or play video games. Life is short; let him be a kid!” And I shut myself up.

So I feel entirely simpatico with Ms. Waugh, and more power to her. I hope more moms get the message.

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