So What Ever Happened With…? — Abby Off the Record

So What Ever Happened With…?

by Abby on September 2, 2011

QuestionsHave you ever met anyone who goes on and on about, say, their child’s sleep problems, potty training challenges, or their babysitter woes? And then all of a sudden the kid’s miraculously sleeping through the night, wearing underwear, and has the best sitter in the entire world, but the mom’s mysteriously tight-lipped and just says casually, “Oh, yeah. It all worked out. I guess we just got lucky!” It’s infuriating, isn’t it?

How about some follow-up, people?! If I’ve listened to you rant and rave for months about getting your kid to nap, the least you can do is let me know what finally worked! Connect the dots for me, PLEASE! I have a theory – several, actually — about why people don’t broadcast it to the world when they solve a particular parenting problem.

1. They have no clue. That’s right, they truly don’t know. They probably read every book and tried every trick and home remedy and random piece of advice from strangers. So when something finally worked, they haven’t the foggiest what it was.

2. They really did get lucky. This is especially true for sitters. We searched high and low and put the word out to everyone we knew when we were looking for a daytime sitter. I had some meetings, some false starts, some dead-ends, then finally, I spoke to the right person at the right time and we found a wonderful sitter who’s reliable, affordable, and convenient. We just got lucky. (And NO, you can’t have her number! Well, maybe. If you’re nice.)

3. They don’t want to jinx it. You know those celebrities on every talk show and in every magazine who proclaim to the world what a fabulous marriage they have? (I’m talking to YOU, Heidi Klum.) Nine times out of 10, those people end up divorced within a couple of years. (Sorry, J.Lo.) It’s the same with moms. I guess we’re afraid that if we brag too much about how our first child potty-trained himself in a day, the next kid will be in Pull-Ups till he grows facial hair.

4. They’re embarrassed. Maybe they get their child to sleep by dancing in their underwear and singing the Barney theme song. (Not that I’ve ever done this.) Maybe they got their child to poop in the potty by promising him he could eat candy for breakfast every day. Maybe their sitter is an ex-stripper who never graduated high school. (Ahem, Charlie Sheen.) Or maybe they’re just ashamed they let their guard down and revealed they’re not the perfect supermom they like to think they are.

So if I’ve ever inadvertently NOT given you closure on any of my parenting challenges, feel free to bring it to my attention. In most cases, what probably worked was time. Not crying at the gym daycare, not spitting up around the clock, sleeping (more or less) through the night, eating a vegetable – with my kids, all of these things happened over time. I know, I know. You were looking for a quick fix, weren’t you? Listen: if I knew all the secrets, I wouldn’t have to wonder how other people do it!

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Lou Mello September 2, 2011 at 6:31 am

Now this is funny and so true, we usually don’t know what finally clicked. Love the little side shots at Heidi. J.Lo and Charlie Sheen; that is fab writing.

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neena September 2, 2011 at 7:22 am

Oh, this drives me crazy! I have a friend that does this all the time – just give us the closure already!

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Kathleen Basi September 2, 2011 at 7:59 am

I think it’s #3. That, and perhaps they meant to mention it, after they were sure it wasn’t a fluke, and then forgot. LOL.

As for sleeping through the night, I continue to maintain that is a myth. Still hasn’t happened in our house. Well, the 6-y-o sleeps like a log and the 4-y-o is generally fine unless there’s a fire truck or fireworks or thunder or (you get the idea), but outside of that…still waiting.

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Kim September 2, 2011 at 10:03 am

This made me laugh! I think #1 is probably me; I don’t have the foggiest idea why something eventually works out. But honestly, I am still waiting for it to work out in terms of the sleep and potty training and end of sassy mouth days. I will keep this post in mind and try to remember to write on my blog about the day when it finally does all work out :) This brought a smile to my face this morning, as I have often wondered the same thing!

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Shannon @ AnchorMommy September 8, 2011 at 12:06 am

Yes! Thank you for calling out those “non-closure” moms. Speak up, ladies! Share that hard-earned knowledge! ;-)

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It's Not Like a Cat September 12, 2011 at 9:14 pm

I try not to give tips because yeah, it jinxes it. Also I have no clue how anything happens for us. Also as soon as I say it is even GOING well, the baby starts being awake from midnight until 3 a.m. (yes, night after night–kill me now, and may I tell you it is hell on a marriage and the preschooler’s not enjoying it much, either), or the preschooler wets the bed 3 out of 4 nights, or I start smelling like beer and wearing the same clothes every day (KIDDING!!!!–at least about the beer part).

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