There’s not a mom on this Earth who didn’t hear the story about Madlyn Primoff, the mother who dumped her daughters on the side of the road when she just couldn’t stand another second of their bickering. And among the moms I’ve spoken to – every single one of them laughed, or at least smiled at the thought of it. Of course this mom took it too far by driving off and leaving one of the girls stranded, but aren’t those parenting experts always admonishing us moms for making empty threats? How many times can a parent say, “don’t make me pull over this car?” when the kids know nothing of the sort will happen.
Now here we are watching the media jump all over this mom not just because what she did was horrible but because she doesn’t fit the profile of the kind of mom who would actually give in to maternal rage. She’s an Ivy League grad! She’s a lawyer! She lives in the wealthy New York suburbs! Aren’t women like that supposed to be enlightened, deep breathing, green tea drinking 21st century moms? Well, the short answer is NO. Motherhood is hard because its runs counter to all of that Zen advice. It is constant, it can be monotonous, it is tenacious and despite all of those parenting books it does not come with instructions. In those moments where you feel like you just cannot hear your kids in the backseat, or in the other room, or at the kitchen table, go at each other with full whine on it is incredibly hard not to just lose it.
The trick of course is to not give in and kick your kids to the proverbial or literal curb. By all means pull over the car. But, get yourself out and take a break from your kids. Enough to scare them into calming down but not enough to warrant your arrest for child abandonment. And if that fails thank this mom for doing what she did because now she has given all us moms the ultimate scary story. Don’t fool around in the backseat or mommy could lose it just like Madlyn Primoff. I usually shield my six year old daughters from as much news as possible, but this story I’m going to be sure they read.