Wednesday, November 10, 2010
The BFF Mom
The Beast often regales me with tales about the “Nice Moms”...the moms who let their kids do all sorts of things…like stay up late on school nights, eat junk food, hang out at the mall, fully fund their child’s every whim. I fall far short on the “Nice “ meter and I am, of course, suspicious of moms who are too high up on that niceness scale. On the opposite spectrum from my low placement…the most dangerous in my opinion… are the BFF moms—the Best Friends Forever moms. They turn motherhood into another popularity contest and there is really no winner.
There are a lot of BFF moms. It is easiest to spot them with their teen daughters buying clothes at The Mall. The mom is wearing an almost identical outfit to her daughter…looking like the sadly unpopular girl from high school who believes if she gets the right cloths, agrees with everything that popular girl says or demands—that she will win her love.
I was in The Mall with The Beast last winter buying, what I hope is, her first and last pair of new UGGS—it was there that we witness a teen daughter—dressed, in all intents and purposes, in pajamas…her beautiful, slim hip bones showing between her short, tight t-shirt and the elastic on her flannel pajama bottoms. I looked at the girl and thought—What would your mother say if she saw you out and about with that perfectly beautiful stomach exposed to the world?! But then I saw her—a tired woman, also sporting UGGS picking up the discarded shoes from her daughter’s shopping spree….she was encouraging the girl to make one more purchase of UGG boots because” they are so cute.”
I stared at the woman in amazement and daughter stared at the woman in disgusted…tossing get another box on their pile to buy. Neither of them looked happy. The BFF mom desperate to seek approval from her daughter, the daughter annoyed by her mom’s attempt to buy friendship.
The Beast is my favorite person. She is so like me and so like The Husband—what is not to love? Yet there are fights and challenges and constant pushing of boundaries. Sometimes with the delicacy of a well trained diplomat I am able to craft an agreement between the two us. But sometimes…sometimes I just have to be the mean, mean mommy. And to quote Ms. Leather-Pants—“I’m not your friend, I ‘m your mom. You don’t have to like me.” And believe me—there are times when she really doesn’t like me. But it is not the end of the world—she can’t drop me as a mother.
The role of BFF is best left to someone else. Too much pressure...not enough power.