Parenting for Dummies: What Not to Do

Bad parents proudly cop to their worst-of moments in books
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 13, 2009 8:59 AM CDT
Parenting for Dummies: What Not to Do
One writer to's "Bad Parent" page confessed to letting her toddler watch up to six hour of TV a day..   (Shutter Stock)

Move over, arguments about organic baby food. A new set of books celebrates a less perfect kind of parenting—stories from moms and dads who mess up, and don't mind copping to it, the Wall Street Journal reports. Parents who let their toddlers watch too much TV or have read their daughter's diaries are behind titles like True Mom Confessions, and publishers say the bad parent tell-all genre is drawing in plenty of readers—and submissions.

Critics say the confessions—the website TMC is spun from saw more than 500,000 in 2 years—normalize slack parenting, but the self-professed "bad parents" counter that they are trying to calm the anxiety of self-critical parents. "If we all simply refused to engage and said, 'What we're doing is good enough,' I think we'd all be a lot happier," said the author of Bad Mother: A Chronicle of Maternal Crimes, Minor Calamities and Occasional Moments of Grace. (More parenting stories.)

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