To the lady who called me a bitch.

Today normal service is suspended on the blog while I write about someone writing about me – is this how the world ends? Probably. I already hate myself for posting this.

I don’t normally write reviews so it feels a bit bizarre to say that I have been reviewed.

If you can call it ‘being reviewed’ which, let’s face it, sounds much nicer than ‘being called a bitch on the internet by a total stranger who thinks I throw alcoholic drinks into my children’s faces’.

I understand that my attitude to parenting is not shared by everyone, the world would be a much worse place if they did, but I have to admit I was a bit disturbed to discover I was the  main feature of a blog post titled ‘You’re Kind of a Bitch of a Mom Blogger’ which I read whilst stuck at home with two sick children. Fun times!

The classic response would be to say ‘Hey lady you called me a bitch that kind of makes you a bitch too!’ but I don’t know anything about this lady – she might going through a tough time, maybe she’d been up all night with two sick children or perhaps she was just really, really struggling to find interesting things to write about in her blog.

But the main reason I’m not going to call her a bitch is because I just don’t think it’s a nice thing to do.  Either in real life or on the internet which is also part of real life.

A list of people I think it is OK to call bitches:

1. Someone who pretends to be your friend then sleeps with your husband (this has never happened to me but I think I would feel happy calling this person a bitch).

2. Friends. In a ‘Yo bitches wassup?’ kinda way.

3. Someone dressed up as a lady dog for fancy dress party.

er that’s it.

So Jessica found a post I’d written on Scary Mommy, an American parenting website, and decided that I am a bad mother who needs to see a therapist. Which is a bit mean but also a great set up for a sitcom where we end up living next door to each other and become BFF’s.

The bit that really wound Jessica up was a joke I made about throwing drinks in my children’s faces being a waste of good wine.

my stomach sinks and there’s ringing in my ears. Who thinks this? Who does this?

No one Jess. No one does this.

It’s a joke.

OK maybe not a joke that stands up to this much analysis online but it’s definitely kind of a joke, as you might put it.

Also that ringing in your ears are you sure you haven’t just got tinnitus Jess?

She goes on to say IN BIG LETTERS BECAUSE THIS NEXT BIT IS IMPORTANT:

If you feel like throwing things at your children or if you feel like the image of someone throwing drinks in the faces of children (anybody really) is funny please see a therapist.

Let me make this clear: I have never thrown drinks in my children’s faces.

I realise this makes me both kind of a bitch AND also a liar so let’s not get started on the images I find funny that are also wildly inappropriate.

Having established that she needs more material for her post doesn’t like what I say Jessica starts reading my blog where she is further incensed by my post ‘Is my son a dick?‘ In it I conclude that sometimes babies cry for no good reason. Jessica likes this not one bit and explains why her husband doesn’t either:

You should know though that Mr. G is particularly sensitive to name calling and during these last 20 years has smoothed out more than a few of my rough edges. He’s gifted me empathy in new ways and reminded me of the power of our words.

He’s gifted you empathy has he? Have you kept the receipt Jess? Because I think your empathy may be a touch on the faulty side, given that the dictionary definition is the ability to identify with and understand somebody else’s feelings or difficulties.

Are you sure it was empathy he gifted you and not just a nice scarf?

After spelling my name wrong (which I admit I have a bit of a problem with) Jessica asks her friend Heather to wade in with her thoughts on the subject because why attack someone on your own when you could get your friends to join in too?

Nice touch Jess!

Heather, says something lovely and long winded about how name calling is wrong which makes me wonder if Heather actually saw the title of the blog post her friend was writing where she calls me a bitch?

Finally Jessica goes on to say:

If I had a friend who was writing about her son being a dick I’d end the friendship. Maybe not sever, but certainly I’d never have her alone with my children and I’d lose respect for her.

This is where my fantasy about the two of us becoming BFF’s falls apart. Because if I had a friend who was writing about her son being a dick I’d pop round  with biscuits (that’s cookies to you Jess) and a shoulder to cry on.

I wouldn’t write a reply online suggesting she’s a bad mother who shouldn’t be left alone with children because although I’m totally kind of a bitch I’m also all about supporting my sisters.

I realise I’m being a little bit mean to Jessica and I’m sorry.  I accept that we choose to parent and express ourselves online in different ways.

I probably should be annoyed that she’s called me a bad mother but  honestly – I know I’m not – so who gives a shit what anyone else thinks?

There is one thing Jessica wrote that I did find offensive,  it’s in her last line:

Your one year old baby isn’t a dick but you’re kind of a bitch. Stop it.

Jessica I’ll take being called a bitch and a bad mother but I’m afraid I’m not going to Stop it.

I love that blogging  is giving mothers a voice even if it is not a voice I agree with.

So Jessica you carry on doing your thang and I’ll continue with mine and who knows maybe one day we’ll become best friends?

As Voltaire said ‘ I do not agree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it’.

I don’t think he ever called anyone a bitch though.

 

 

 

75 thoughts on “To the lady who called me a bitch.

  1. hahahaha Sorry I just had to laugh (at her!) I just read her post and clearly she doesn’t get your humour! Also, I think she’s sitting on a very high horse writing about your parenting skills like that…everyone parents differently. It’s a good thing she’s in the minority though, just look at all those comments (and likes) she’s getting going against her.

  2. Just because we give birth doesn’t mean we lose our self of self, or sense of humour…well, not all of us, not the people who aren’t trying to be Ms.Perfect Pernickety Po Face Perfect Parent Pants anyway. I love your blog even though my boy is 28 now, I wish I’d been reading stuff like this when he was little. You write about being a parent, not a self help blog about rearing children, I think you’re funny, hilarious even, and I’m pretty sure that behind the scenes, you’re doing a great job, I love that you swear as I do, but I bet you don’t do that in front of your children. Be a mum at home, and the person who is not only a mum, right here. Some people won’t ‘get’ you, perhaps it’s the Atlantic divide : )

  3. This made me laugh out loud. Perhaps it’s the difference between British and American humo(u)r. Americans can be so literal! This woman, Jess, really thinks you’re doing this stuff! As an English woman living in America, I know that isn’t true. You’re a writer, you have IMAGINATION, you make stuff up, particularly to amuse your readers.

    I’d rather have you as a BFF than Jess. I like to have friends I can laugh with.

    Keep up the exemplary work. All best, Virginia

    • Hi! I know this is an old post, but I wanted to say that I just read your Scary Mommy article (I’m American, and I live by Scary Mommy). I just wanted to send a shout-out of support. That article linked me here, and i’ve read some of your other posts, which really enjoy. Some of us yanks can be touchy with a “holier-than-thou” attitude, and it’s annoying as hell. I don’t like those types either. I thought your article was hilarious, and on-point. I need as much mom-reality as I can get. Contrary to Jess’s delusional world, my life is not a Clorox bleach commercial where I lovingly mess my 2yr old’s hair when he pees on the floor, and gleefully grab a paper towel Thanks! 🙂

  4. I don’t understand how there can be Americans out there who still don’t understand irony or the British sense of humour – Jessica should be held down Clockwork Orange style and forced to watch back to back episodes of Green Wing and Uncle. I’m sure you’re not too worried but just so you know – the sisterhood is still here. X

  5. Purely on the evidence of having enjoyed your blog for twelve months (and having laughed out loud frequently insodoing), I would suggest:
    a) Your children are blessed
    b) Your husband’s won the fucking lottery!

    I’m unconvinced that Americans always understand the nuances of our humour, so, y’know, fuck ’em.

  6. The only thing I object to in your post is that it made me click through to Jessica’s blog.

    Keep up the fantastic work of being a normal mum and writing about it in a fun and funny way that I aspire to (but I’m too busy throwing Sauvignon Blanc in my kid’s face to get round to).

  7. Hahahahaha I bloomin love your take on being a mum!Jessica obviously doesn’t get your humor. If Jess refuses your bff gesture you’ll have a ton of other mums, me included that will be, our dick like children can grow old together and we can laugh at the fact we survived motherhood without being committed to insane asylums. Bugger off Jess no one asked for your opinion!

  8. Well, see, now I’m annoyed because she shares her name with my daughter. Do you see what you’ve done Big Jessica? You’ve got several mums mildly irritated.

  9. Yo bitch! Your blog is well-written, funny and, reassures me that I’m not the only one making this parenthood shit up as I go along. Please accept an online fist bump of solidarity with my best wishes.

  10. Great post, though I don’t think you should have included a link to that woman’s post. I am not sure if she just wanted to be mean to get more readers or is she one of those people who enjoy being offended. Anyway, I love your blog and you always make me laugh. And I’m American, so some of us do have a good sense of humour. x

  11. Out of all the things to get incensed about – and devote energy towards writing about – she chose you and your blog?? Forget female genital mutilation. Forget forced marriages. Forget child poverty – no, that’s small stuff. But making a joke about one’s own parenting? Criminal.

  12. You are ace. This response is perfect and genuinely made me laugh very loudly (I hope she does have a reciept for that empathy).

    Having recently been on the receiving end of some nastiness on Twitter, I really can empathise with you on this one.

    Think your humour may have been lost in translation.

    Tomato
    Tomato

  13. I think the only thing Jess has succeeded in doing is getting a load of pissed Brits writing comments at the bottom of her blog. Silly woman. Thanks for the laughs, I would just advice not throwing wine in the kids faces, stick to water and save the wine for yourself.

  14. I know that it wasn’t the intention of your post but this really made me smile.
    When someone can humbly take being called a bitch and then knock out a piece of writing of that calibre…. well…. iimaginary hats off to you.
    I think Jess is a bit of a bitch though…. In fact….. her post smacks of trolling!

  15. Can’t remember how I found your blog, unless it was googling “is my son a dick”, but when I did I threw away my copy of Gina Ford as I knew I had found all the parenting and indeed life advice I would ever need, especially when you confirmed what I already knew which is that everything can be cooked at 200c.

    Definitely don’t Stop it. That would be a tragedy.

  16. Very well said- and in your fantastically self-deprecating style that makes your blog so much fun to read. Keep up the good work.

  17. Your blog is a recent discovery for me and it is fantastic – your last post about ‘disco shit’ made me nearly (see, Jessica, I said nearly) spit hot coffee all over my kids as I was laughing so much. Keep up the good work x

  18. I’ve been thinking about this. And I think she obviously wants to be you. Then again anyone who says ‘my reach is spectacular’ (yes she does this) might just be a little bonkers. Your blog is brilliant and funny and she is, erm, not. Let’s just be grateful she hasn’t read ‘Should I start cooking Crystal Meth.’ Imagine… Great response x

  19. Is there a history of Americans not understanding dry humor or sarcasm? Because I am from the US and find your blog very funny (I mean, who hasn’t thought their 1 year old kid was an asshole for waking up every 2 hours at night?).

    I’m not going to be offended by other commenters who think that Americans have no ability to decipher humor, however, because I firmly believe a person can only be offended by what he/she LETS offend himself/herself. This applies to the blogger who called you a bitch – if she didn’t like what you said then she should’ve given it no weight and moved on. Instead she posted a mommy-wars attack…which is smart from a page view perspective (mom-on-mom bashing is so hot right now) but was a total dick move from a human perspective.

    Anyway, love your blog and keep up the great writing…some of us Americans like to laugh every once in a while 😉

  20. And that, Jess, is how one deals with something one does not agree with on the Internet.

    Keep up the good work Eeh Bah Mum, you have clearly shown who is the better writer, and indeed, the bigger person.

  21. You’re not a bitch at all! You’re a sane voice of reason, a breath of fresh air for anyone who DOESNT think babies are all sunshine and happiness. They can be that too, but parts of kids suck. And for most normal people, knowing that other people think that too, and it’s ok is what keeps postpartum depression at bay.

  22. Poor you! Bravely posted, most excellent, well written reply. Oh golly. I was walking around Santa Monica, USA with my sister pushing her three month old baby in a pram. Women would rush up all gushy and gooey and compliment her DOG.Even ask if they could give it a doggy treat. Nuff said.

  23. Your blog makes me laugh. And now Jessica has made me laugh. But for entirely different reasons. Gawd bless the American sense of humour (read: lack of any sense of humour). You just keep doing what you’re doing, your writing can help me on a bad day with my two girls, I’m not quite sure who Jessica is helping.

  24. I’m due ny first child in a couple of weeks. I find your blog hilarious maybe I should already be seeking therapy!

  25. Elegantly done! I’m sure I have written many things that would horrify a few people, but most seem to understand that this is comedy! The blogs are supposed to be funny! Just because we write something, doesn’t mean it has or will actually happen. Otherwise all though fiction writers would be screwed…

  26. Screw her. She clearly has no idea what shes talking about. im 29 and about to give birth to my second boy in 16 weeks, i work 40 hours a week in 12 hour shifts and have not only my 3 year old son to take care of but my other halfs family (who drive me insane). Om constantly told by other mums how much i damage my children by working, my mother in law rips my parenting and child to pieces and there are days where i just want to scream. Your blog keeps me sane, you make me realise i dont have to be perfect, i just have to survive and thats good enough. So eeh bah mum keep up the good work, dont hang on the written words of a boring hippy dippy shrew of a yank who has the sense of humour of a mouldy turnip (sorry turnip thats harsh) and yes i lowered myself to name calling…im not ashamed lol
    we love you eeh bah mum

  27. Well I think your blog is hilarious. If you ran parenting classes I’d definitely come (perhaps we could practise throwing wine at each other).
    I called my daughter a little git yesterday, does that make me a godawful mother now as well? High Five!

  28. Oh bless her and her blinkered set of principles. Got to love someone that takes themselves so seriously.

    I AM off to subscribe to her blog though…..

    You’re not a bitch. Children can be arseholes.

  29. Very eloquently said Eeh Bah. We need people like you to voice out loud those thoughts we internalise because we think they’re wrong/naughty/criminal/challenging to others. I bet Jessica finds her kids annoying sometimes.

  30. A complete stranger said to me in the playground ‘I think my son might be an asshole’
    Did I think she was a bitch for saying this? Nope, I thought ‘That has best friend written all over it’….
    You blog is fantastic, you writing style is fantastic and with the risk of sounding like a stalker…well, you are fantastic.
    People will always attack other people…always. People will always make us feel like we are parenting badly, there will always be Mothers who manage to not wear cheerios in their hair on the school run….these are not our people. These are cornflake box people. Well done them-they win.
    x

  31. I have a major problem now. I really want to read Jessica’s blog but I don’t want to give her the page view- oh what to do! You are fab and not a bitch. Is suspect Jessica is dull and probably not very clever. If my husband ever tried to give me the gift of empathy i would give him a punch – i’m not being ironic!

  32. I love your blog, I started following you after the ‘is my son a dick’ post as you had the balls to write what I was thinking about my kids, my precious, beautiful, loveable little arseholes!
    I wish I could be perfect like Jessica showing empathy whilst my children throw actual shit at each other (in a nappy I may add) punch me in the face and scream that their sandwich is cheese which they asked for but they changed their mind in the 5 minutes making it to ham.
    I am not perfect that is why I don’t follow her blog I’d much rather read your sense of humour (which is obviously a joke) if she can’t distinguish between fact and humour perhaps she needs therapy?
    She is very sad if she can’t find humour in life and has to get attention by attacking other people (wait isn’t that a bully) ah well whatever she is she is of no consequence to you 🙂

  33. I love your blog and your humour, we are all parents we all have those thoughts and anyone that says otherwise comes across as pretty self righteous. You keep doing what you are doing!

  34. i dont normally comment on blogs that are so negative, but i had to. she talks so much about your pageviews, but controvosy breeds interest and im sure she is getting lots of traffic from the post she wrote. I agree that I dont think you should have linked to it, why benefit her?
    She talks about how your kids will read back when they are old enough, but what is she teaching hers? that being mean is OK? that difference of opinion is wrong and should be slighted?

    • I think it is important to post the link. If we are going to form an opinion about the piece she wrote, we really need to read it first. Sure it directs traffic, but the page is full of people having a go at her. She certainly won’t be basking in the glory of more traffic if 90% of it is people calling her out.

  35. I’m really sorry that this lady called you a bitch, you’re really not! She might not appreciate your humour, but that really wasn’t necessary. And writing an entire post about it?! Your blog is hilarious, I’ve shared it with so many of my mum friends. We all love our kids dearly, but I think most of us can admit that there are times when they drive us mental! I’m glad you can laugh about this, share and move on. I hope that the American lady will be able to as well (I somehow doubt it). The only solution is to do a joint blog in about 30 years and see whose kids have the biggest therapy bill.

  36. I’m glad she’s a perfect mother – at least there’s one out there.

    The rest of us will have to soldier on imperfectly but trying to make light of our trials and tribulations, sharing these to help our fellow imperfect mother’s as we go!

  37. Oh dear. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. I’m off to throw glasses of wine over myself to stop myself clicking to read Jessica’s post about you – don’t worry Jess, I won’t get the wine near my darling kiddo – as Kirsty so rightly pointed out, it’s such a waste…

  38. Can’t be bothered to read Jessicas blog post – I can imagine it. I am one of those hippiemums who cosleep, long term breastfeed and respond to my childs every need. I’ve noticed that in that “community” there seems to be a serious lack of sense of humour. I feel sorry for those mums who can’t see the funny side of parenting. Parenting is extremely hard and we need to laugh other wise we’ll cry! And that is why I love this blog. I normally hate blogs – in fact I read blogs every day as part of my job and yours is the only one I’ve chosen to follow. So thank you for not stopping!

  39. Please don’t ever misuse your excellent blog again to react to unqualified internet blabber, there’s simply too much of it out there. So someone dumb and rude blogged about you, so what! I want to laugh about bagels possessed by evil and cry reading about embarassing secrets we all share. Much love to you and your family.

  40. Oh…my…word. That has to be the most UN empathetic post I have ever read (hers, not yours obvs!) If there was ever a time that I could only read one blog it would be yours, a little because I have stick man skills envy but mostly because you make me laugh, in a snorting my drink out through my nose kind of way.
    She completely misses the point and the humour in your writing. I suspect she may end up alienating person after person with her spiteful, uncalled for comments, while you my lovely will continue to make us laugh, wince and cry in understanding solidarity – you rock xx

  41. Brilliant, very funny and smart response to what must have been at least slightly upsetting. There’s definitely been something lost in translation but don’t put it down to the old Brit vs Yank humour thing, because I know many cool Americans who do understand irony! Maybe she was having a bad day, either way, dust your shoulders off and keep on moving. As Dr Seuss put it, those who mind don’t matter, those who matter don’t mind.

  42. oh dear. Lost in translation much?!
    I don’t know anything about this Jessica woman but I know about you and while you may not have a million followers (which obviously instantly qualifies you as a fantastic person and mother) but you are awesome at one you do. I adore your blog and style of writing and I can’t stop giggling that someone took throwing a drink LITERALLY…!!!!!!!!
    I heard you speak at BlogFest and the one thing that massively struck me is how much you bloody love your kids – the way you spoke about them was so lovely and we all have moments where our perfect parent halo slips but I’d happily let you look after my kids – Id even supply the wine!!
    Muchos love! And keep doing what you’re doing. And well done for the calm tone
    (Still vany believe they took the drink literally pahahhaha!!!!) Xxxx

  43. Superb. Both your blogging (which is the only blog I subscribe to) and your response to what must have been a very hurtful thing to read, especially after an all-nighter with two sick kiddies. I don’t know whether or not it’s a cultural difference in sense of humour but from me in SA, neither Brit nor American, I laugh out loud at your posts and totally “get” it. I thought the harmless and imaginative quip about throwing drinks hilarious. You go girl!

  44. 1) Jessica sounds like a proper weirdo and I wouldn’t leave my kids alone with her.
    2) It’s a shame her husband didn’t “gift” her a sense of humour.

    Love your blogs they make my day. xx

  45. I found your blog through Scary Mommy and have read the whole thing since. You are hilarious! I’m not sure I have ever laughed more at a blog. I am very worried about Jessica’s sense of humor. And, as you can tell by my spelling of “humor”, I am American – but my son watches a lot of Peppa Pig. Maybe that helps?

  46. Shocked and appalled Jessica Gottlieb calls her dog Junior “USELESS” !! (her About Me page)

    She ALSO says ….

    “Our cat Sparky … more useful than Junior but I LOVE HER LESS” !!! Jessica – do you REALLY think yr pets aren’t HURT by this ?!? (my caps)

  47. Just madness, her obvs not you. What a brilliant response, you shine lady, keep doing what you are doing, making us relate, laugh and frankly, want to be youxx

  48. Yo bitches wassup?

    Thank You to everyone who left lovely comments on here and not so lovely (but also not horrible) comments on Jessica’s original post.

    Waking up to discover I’d been called a bitch was bizarre but then the next day I was woken by a 2 year old shouting ‘I want cheese’ whilst smacking me in the face with a block of Parmesan.

    Isn’t life a wonderful thing….

  49. Oh dear, I think someone was maybe has some issues? I think we should maybe pity the poor girl! So sad doe her, should we start a collection maybe? can we buy her a sense or humour or maybe some understanding of sarcasm ?

  50. Ugh, I’d like to say I can’t believe somebody would do that… but it’s the internet. It’s hard to be surprised by the stupidity that can be found online. One of the things I love about the parent blog community is that there’s so much honesty. Life isn’t perfect. Sometimes parents get frustrated by their children. Sometimes children can be dicks. Being able to read about other people having difficulties makes me realise I’m not alone in my day to day struggles – and that it’s okay to laugh about those things too. It’s a nice sense of perspective and if all the other bloggers were writing about how perfect their lives were, it would make us all feel very much alone. So keep doing what you’re doing. Thanks for a great blog. 🙂

  51. This is a brilliant, clever and kind reply lady, well done! You’ve put it so well, without losing it and descending into bitchiness. Please don’t ever Stop It. Let the haters hate. Dicks. xxxxx

  52. Jess is the one who needs therapy (especially after all that empathy she has to put up with from hubby…) You rock! (Advice: buy soft cheese)

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