This week on Yahoo! Shine, they posted an article that lists the 30 Signs You Are Not a Parent, written by a mom. And although the concept is great, there are many things that I don’t necessarily agree with. Just because we don’t have kids, doesn’t mean we’re not aging, and that our responsibilities aren’t growing daily. So with that, below is Jenny Isenman‘s list followed by my rebuttal in purple.
30 signs you are NOT a parent. By Jenny Isenman
1. People still call you by your actual name. This one is mostly true. Unless you’re the person who’s always nicknamed.
2. You don’t have to look at anyone else’s poop. People without babies often have furbabies and after a week of cleaning a sick kitty’s poop from every carpet in my home I completely disagree with this statement.
3. You don’t sneak vegetables into your recipes like meatloaf, smoothies, brownies — you just eat them. Sometimes we have to trick ourselves. Eating healthy is hard when you’re working…all the time.
4. You don’t go to bed wondering how many times you’ll be woken up before morning. Well maybe we don’t worry about being woken up by other people, but my bladder definitely wakes me up a couple of times throughout every night, therefore waking up Mr. Opposite because he’s the lightest sleeper in the history of sleepers.
5. Your house is clean. Is it? Have you been to my house?
6. You don’t sound like your mother. Yes I do. You don’t need kids to start to sound like your parents.
7. You probably don’t know every sound that every animal makes and there’s no urgency to learn. (PS: a donkey goes bray, did you know that?) This one is bang on. Thank goodness.
8. Eighty percent of your conversations do not involve schoolwork, milestones, or poop. 80% of my conversations do involve milestones and poop. Poop is a great conversation piece.
9. You can walk across your home without the fear of stepping on a Lego. This may be true, but we do have to worry about stepping on our cats tails because they secretly (openly) like to try and trip people.
10. You get to curse freely and loudly so that it feels cathartic. (Words like SUGAR and FUDGE, no matter how loudly you say them, don’t do the trick, but why would you know that?) Some parents do too. Have you heard the potty mouths on some kids these days? Jeesh.
11. You don’t make all your plans around other people’s nap, sleep, school, or sports schedules. Does work, night school and sports count? Because that’s how our plans are made.
12. You don’t have hand sanitizer in every purse, glove-compartment, or junk drawer. Some women do. OCD types mostly.
13. You can go to the bathroom uninterrupted and it doesn’t feel triumphant at all. I don’t know if you had a cat or a dog before you had kids, but if you did then you’d know that bathroom time is ‘pets’ time. Cats reaching their paws under the door until you let them in, dogs scratching at the door until you cave. There’s no such time as alone bathroom time. That said, it does feel triumphant. Going to the bathroom always feels triumphant.
14. If your clothes get a stain on them and you were the culprit. I will always be the culprit.
15. You can stay out past midnight on a weekend without excessive yawning and possibly falling asleep while doing a shot. Can I? Not since I passed 30. A wild night is staying out past 11:00pm, but home before I turn into a pumpkin at midnight.
16. You can still do shots. (Notice the plural.) Once again, can I? Plus, I know lots of moms that let loose and have a night filled with shots. They just also arranged to have the kids watched by grandma and grandpa the next morning too.
17. You don’t have to arrange weeks in advance to go out on a Saturday night. Well, just because you don’t have kids doesn’t mean your schedule isn’t full and willy-nilly. I have to make plans weeks in advance for everything, even after work drinks. On top of that, if you’re trying to make plans to go out on a Saturday night with your mom friends, you also have to take that into consideration and plan in advance. The thing about being a grown-up is that your schedule is totally full all the time. What’s that all about?
18. When you sing happy birthday, you don’t say cha cha cha between every line. Once again, thank goodness. Also once again, I’m not sure I know any moms who do this. Do you?
19. You can watch TV shows when they actually air. My job keeps me at work until all hours. Who has time to watch a show when it actually airs? That’s what Netflix, PVR’s, and Rogers on Demand is for. Well, except for Mad Men. I make sure I can watch that one.
20. You have no clue what this month’s happy meal toy is. I order Happy Meals every other time I go to McDonald’s. I give my toy to cute kids that are near me.
21. Your stuff (i.e. phone, iPad, jewelry, high heels, sunglasses … ) is exactly where you left it. My problem is that I’m so busy all the time that I actually forget where I exactly put it.
22. You read books with lettering smaller than 24pts. I love books. I also know tons of moms in book clubs so I’m not sure this theory is correct.
23. Toys, dolls, and games don’t eerily start talking or beeping at 4 a.m., making you wonder if they’re alive and if you should go turn them off while carrying a wiffle ball bat, light saber, or fake pirate’s sword. This is true.
24. You don’t even have the above items handy. This is not true. Do you know how many childless grown men I know that have light sabers and pirate swords? Actually, you don’t even really want to know.
25. You can sit down through an entire meal. Eating is a wonderful pleasure.
26. Your car is cute, zippy, or sexy … it doesn’t smell like curdled milk … and there aren’t 1,000 loose Cheerios, Goldfish, Polly Pockets, or Bey Blades rolling back and forth when you stop at a light. Even if/when I have kids, I will never have a minivan, and probably won’t get an SUV.
27. The people you go out with will most likely keep their pants on when you’re in public. I used party with a guy who was nicknamed ‘Bottomless Ty’ and why was he called that? Because every time he got drunk he took his pants off and walked around bottomless. Just saying.
28. You don’t even appreciate the fact that you get to listen to YOUR music whenever you please. Try dating a musician. You never get to hear your music ever.
29. You can’t remember the last time you had a chicken nugget. Last week. They were awesome.
30. You don’t know what it’s like to be so head over heels in love and totally obsessed with some little being 24/7 — and not be considered a stalker! Yes I do. It’s wonderful. Being in love with your partner should be all consuming and amazing.
Yes there are differences between being a mom and not being a mom (obviously). And being a parent IS the most important job in the world, however we’re all humans and we all have growing responsibilities and we all have people we love and things that we love and prioritize.