Posted by: Deborah Drezon Carroll | February 23, 2010

It’s all mom’s fault, isn’t it?

If, like me, you’ve ever joked with your kids and said, “Just add that to the list of things you’ll tell your therapist someday,” this post has your name on it. Do we all assume that everyone will end up in therapy these days? I mean, doesn’t everyone? Do we also assume that everyone in therapy will blame their issues on their mother? I would. Why not? If we blame Mom, we don’t have to take any responsibility. Is that wrong?

I blame myself and every mother on the planet for this. When the kids are little, don’t we try to take away their pain? Hurt finger? Let Mommy kiss it and make it better. Did you forget your lunch? Let me run over to school on my way to work. If your mother always runs to your rescue when you are young, wouldn’t that lead you to believe that if she’s always the solution, maybe she’s actually the problem? And, if you believe that, yep, you’re doomed to end up on the shrink’s couch.

Don’t even start me on the mistakes we actually do make which are destined to screw up our kids. Have you ever gotten caught up in something and been the last parent to pick the kid up from somewhere? Bam, that kid is headed to therapy with abandonment issues. Lose your temper and overreact to something? Bam, that kid is on the couch with fear of getting too close to people. Do you tell your child he or she can be or do anything they want? Bam! They grow up and find out that some things actually are impossible and then they can’t handle failure.Therapy ahoy.

I’m not sure exactly what I did which will send my “amazing” daughters running for help but I’m sure they’ll let me know eventually. Probably when they’re sending me the bill.

So, you can see, no matter what you do, your kid is headed to a therapist someday. My feeling is that if they’re going anyway, you may as well give them something good to take with them. When you’re weird, be really weird so they’ll have something juicy to share. If you make a mistake, make a doozy, so, again, they won’t bore the therapist. But, if you’d like to try to avoid sending your kid into therapy, sure read the article at this link. It’s worth a try, anyway, because if you’re like a lot of parents, you’ll end up paying for your kid’s therapy so reading this may help you save money.

Alexis Writes:

First of all there is nothing wrong with therapy. It is a healthy exercise that allows you to process how and why you feel the way you feel and then it gives you the power to change. So I don’t think it should be seen as a negative. I went to therapy and it really helped me. I don’t think people should be embarassed that they have gone either. It takes a brave person to admit they don’t like how they are and that they want to be proactive to be happy.

And yes when I went to therapy I talked about my mother. But there are so many good things my mother does even if there were some things I felt were contributing to my problem. But I realized through therapy that everything was in my power and whatever I wanted I had to make  happen for myself. You have to take the good with the bad in order to get where you’re going.

If I had to guess what will drive my sisters to therapy it’s probably the mention of online dating. Which anyone who is reading this consistently should know that, yes, my mother broke her new years resolution and mentioned online dating very recently to someone. I do want to point out I said she would make it to Martin Luther King Day. I’m sure my mother has scarred Tamra by “accidentally” sending her emails from So, I want to sympathize with the mothers because it’s not all your fault but when you’re telling us you’ll stop mentioning online dating and then causally mention J-date 3 or 4 times in a conversation, it hurts your case.

PS Yes, my mother did pay for my therapy.

Ned writes:

Your mother said she only mentioned online dating once but I did have to pry the truth out of her.

Tamra writes:

Honestly, it’s a little insulting how much the topic of online dating is coming up. I’m pretty sure you people need to get a life. Us single people are having actual fun, you should try it.

I don’t need therapy.  I can complain to anyone  I  want to for free.

Shira writes:

Copy and pasted from an email sent to me from mom last Sunday:

“thoughts? do you have friends who you could ask about introducing you to interesting guys? j-date? wandering through town trolling for men? joining a gym? taking a kickboxing class?”

This was the result of me having ONE bad weekend. Any excuse to bring up online dating, right, Mom?



  1. I just sent the link to the article to one of my daughters… she is exactly that mom. The day before the Valentine’s Day parties, she was in a panic because she forgot to buy Valentine gifts for the kids’ 6 teachers! Did she get that from me? I truly hope not!
    When I do something that my daughters do not like, I tell them that they will miss me when I’m gone, that they’ll be sitting around and say, “Ahh, remember when Mom used to…”

  2. I, too, am often pointing out how much they’ll miss me when I’m gone. Sometimes, though, I worry if they’re not thinking (when I’m particularly annoying) that I’m making that time sound pretty good.

  3. I’m glad my parents never bugged me about dating and I was 43 before I got married.

    Stopping by from SITS.

  4. Yeah, I’m kind of working on better control. It’s a process. Your parents were likely much more evolved than I!

  5. Haha!!! There is no telling what my daughter will blame on me!
    Happy SITS Day!!

    • Well, if she’s like most, she’ll find something. What fun are your problems if you can’t blame them on your mom? Thanks for checking us out.

  6. I’m with you – make it interesting so they’ll have something fun to tell the therapist about. Last week, I found a whole collection of shoes in the livingroom. I put them in a basket and told the boys they could go barefoot for a few days, or else they could sing “I’m a Little Teapot” complete with arm movements to ransom them back. Didn’t do a lot of good in the long run, but it was good for a laugh!

    • You are one funny mom! Good for you. And, man, you are so creative, too. Love that “punishment.”

  7. Stopping by from SITS! I love the family dialogue on this blog.

  8. Thanks. We’re sure having fun writing it.

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