I Confess To... My Top 10 Mumfessions - The M Word

I Confess To… My Top 10 Mumfessions

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Any regular visitors to Our Lady’s Children’s hospital in Crumlin may have noticed this. There is a picture hanging on the wall of a child crying. On either side of him, there are two sets of hands, holding mobile phones.

This bugs the shit out of me and one day, I swear I’m going to complain about it. It’s an obvious attempt to shame parents for using their phones instead of interacting with their children.

My daughter is, unfortunately a regular in-patient. When she’s there, I’m there, that’s our deal. And when I’m there, my husband, who’s usually at work, is at home with the other four kids. They all have questions. And I worry about them.

My family also want regular updates. I need to be on my phone sometimes. Sometimes, my daughter requires treatment that takes six hours in a small room that we can’t leave. It’s sad and scary…Netflix, Snapchat and Facebook lighten the mood. I need it. What I don’t need is that stupid judgemental picture staring at me every time I walk down the corridor.

Mammy shaming. It’s everywhere. We’re all victims, and I’m sick of it. I have enough kinda well-adjusted, happy kids that I feel confident making a list of ‘shameful’ acts that I’m calling bullshit on. These things not only aren’t shameful, but sometimes, are hard-core necessary to make it through the day.


Having a lie-on

We don’t have to be Mary Poppins every single morning. Let the kiddies get up, make a bowl of cornflakes and watch other kids on YouTube play with toys you’re never going to buy them. Like, how much damage can they possibly do?! (Full disclosure: one time my kids decided to add maple syrup to the cornflakes and made such a sticky mess, it was just easier to move house, BUT in fairness, I was well rested to deal with it!

Letting your baby live in a onesie:
Babygros for the first 12 months is perfectly acceptable! Sure, the little outfits are adorable and win major likes and love hearts, but babies have no use for pockets, buckles, real buttons or tulle. Ever tried to wrestle a teething child into dungarees?! It’s like they grow extra limbs! Screw that, stick another onesie on and get on with your life.

Shut-up food:
This can come in the form of biscuits, sweets, crisps, sticks of butter, tubes of bonjella… I don’t care. Sometimes we need a few minutes and sometimes this is the only thing that works God Damn it! You can steam some kale after you’ve had an uninterrupted conversation with a fully grown adult.

I am not above offering Sims expansion packs in exchange for clean bedrooms without complaining for six hours first, and neither should you be.

White Lies:
‘Smyths is closed”
‘I dont know where the batteries off that really noisey toy are gone’
‘Me and Daddy are going upstairs to make the bed’
‘I have a headache’ (That one works on Daddy too, sometimes!)

Interim baths:
Head to toe with baby wipes now and then never hurt anyone! Gives them that ‘New Baby’ smell all over again! Note: this one doesn’t work on teenagers, they will have to take a real bath and they will definitely leave the wet towel on the floor.

The odd glass of wine when it’s still bright out:
This may even make your answers to questions like ‘who’d win in a fight between Batman and and a hippopotamus’ more creative. Do it for the kids!

Letting them stay up late so they sleep in late:
Lol, if only that worked. Why do we keep trying that one?!

Things they’re not supposed to play with:
My two boys stayed quiet for a whole 30 minutes one time playing with some easy-to-smash light bulbs they found. It was magical.

Putting yourself first sometimes:
At any given time, at least one of my five children will always need something. Be it shoes, a new coat, credit for their phones or a new pack of sensory toys because the old ones somehow got flushed down the toilet. This leaves very little left over for what mammy needs but I don’t care what anyone says, I’m GETTING my Holos Night Cream AND the eye serum. I might have to handmake the flashcards this month but at least I’ll look refreshed and amazing while doing it!

This list is not comprehensive. You do you, let others do them. And I bet all our children think we are wonderful just the way we are! Screw the shame game.


Christine Greene-O'Brien Gleeson
Christine Greene-O'Brien Gleeson
I'm a mother of 5, my son's autism is the least of my worries!