Every parent makes a mistake at some point or another – It’s inevitable! The important part is the ways in which parents recover from these often hilarious moments. They’re not always that funny in the moment but they certainly become hard to resist giggling at mere months or years later. Whether as a result of tiredness or simply inattention, parenting goofs happen to the best of us.
From forgetting the diaper on a long car ride all the way to forgetting to fill the piñata with candy and chocolate at a birthday party… parenting goofs happen and they serve to remind us that no one is perfect. No matter the image that any parent may try to project on social media, every parent inadvertently has moments when they’re too tired to get up and see what the toddler is up to in the kitchen, only to eventually pull themselves together and see cereal all over the floor – sometimes with milk poured on top.
The fun part about reading other parents’ stories on the times they goofed is that it can remind parents that their own blunders aren’t all that uncommon. Let’s dive into the 20 times parents goofed so hard there was no turning back.
20 A Common Nail Trimming Blunder
As devastating as it is in the moment, Jessica’s blunder is actually an all too common one. She told us:
“I was trimming my son’s nails and he moved as I clipped down and I nicked his finger. I felt like a bad mom, especially because I had to call my mother-in-law to come watch him because I thought I was going to faint. He wore a Band-Aid for a few days and then was good as new!”
Trimming a little newborn’s nails is a seemingly impossible task but instead, it can help to merely file them down a little bit.
19 She Played In A Different Kind Of Sandbox
Anyone with cats and little kids will instantly be able to relate to Beth’s moment of inattention:
“I have three cats and the litter needs to be cleaned frequently. My daughter had just started crawling all over the place and I had forgotten to put the gate up. While cleaning the litter, which I had pulled out of the closet, my phone rang and I went to answer it in the kitchen. When I came back, my daughter was happily playing in the litter.”
That seriously happens to everyone with cats at least once. Perhaps not full-on playing in the litter but still at least moments away from it.
18 Perfect Timing In The Bath
When children don’t cooperate (which is all the time), sometimes parents need to get creative. However, that tactic backfired on Abby:
"A couple weeks ago my son was refusing to get out the bath so I pulled the plug and went 'quick now, don't want the plug monster coming up!' In a jokey way (to clarify - he loves monsters with a passion! Wasn't trying to scare him!!) At the exact same moment, the water made a massive gurgling sound. My son started to shake, his eyes went wide and he started screaming as he attempted to climb out the bath rather quickly and almost fell head first over the side."
17 Trying To Save Money On Hair Trims
As much as YouTube can teach us anything, sometimes it’s better to just spend the extra money and get professional help. Sharel said:
“We weren’t doing too well financially as my husband had just lost his job. I figured I’d save some money and trim my kids’ hair myself. Everything was alright with my first as he’s a boy and I just trimmed it here and there. With my daughter though, she insisted that she HAD to have bangs. I looked up a tutorial and figured I’d try it out. Let’s just say that we ended going to the hair salon to fix it. She won’t let me come near her hair anymore.”
16 Not-So-Fun Pinata
After weeks of planning, the birthday party finally arrives and all the kids are happily running around. With all the details to remember, mom brain can often rear its head at the most inopportune time. Andrea told us:
“For my son’s sixth birthday party, we invited all his friends and had tons of activities planned. He was super excited and everything was going well… until it came time for the piñata. The kids had lots of fun going at it… until one of them finally got it to open. Smiles and cheers quickly turned to disappointment as everyone realized I had forgotten to add candy to it. Oops!
15 A Tickling Session Gone Wrong
Accidents happen… sometimes at the hands of the parents themselves. There’s nothing to feel too guilty about! Elesha told us about the time that she got a little carried away tickling her son:
“My son is four. When he was one-years-old, me and his dad were tickling him on the floor. He lifted his head and collided with the floor face first during one of his giggle fits. Fortunately, the tooth didn’t fall out but it’s been black ever since. Just waiting until it finally falls out on its own!”
Kids have a way of just flailing around and not paying attention, so it’s definitely always important to watch them carefully.
14 The Importance Of 'Mine'
Jamie told us her biggest parenting goof to date:
“I drank some of his juice and he saw. My husband came running inside because he thought he was hurt. Nope just extremely unhappy.”
Anyone with children will instantly understand why this one is as bad as it is! Starting around the 18-month mark (sometimes even before), toddlers develop the annoying habit of wanting to do everything themselves and claiming everything as their own. While the juice was actually the toddler’s in this case, it’s still understandable why he would get upset over his mom having some… juice is delicious after all!
13 Forgetting The Diaper On A 2-Hour Trip
Forgetting the diaper bag happens to the best of us but Whitney’s parenting definitely went a step further. She told us about the time that she forgot to put a diaper on her daughter on a long car ride:
“My best was when I found out I was pregnant the second time. I had such bad baby brain! I changed my daughter for a long 2-hour drive and didn't realize until we got there that I forgot a diaper. She was 18-months-old. What a mess! My husband still won't let me live it down.”
Eek! Is it better to just get a new car seat at that point?
12 The Wrong Milk
Kids have a way of finding the darnedest things. Eliza revealed the time she didn’t check to double-check the contents of a bottle:
“I didn’t realize that the bottle I handed my toddler was the one my eight-year-old daughter found under the couch and put in the fridge. Baby drank it down in his usual gulping sips then made a face, started screaming and then threw up. After calming my child, giving him water and cleaning the mess, I opened the offending bottle and almost threw up myself! Apparently, it was the bottle that my husband couldn’t find a couple days ago and forgot about! Yuck!
11 The Infamous Cell Phone Drop
Just like the nail trimming incident, the infamous phone drop is also another parenting goof that happens to every parent. Cassie told us:
“Dropped my phone on my 8-week-olds head (not on the soft spot) while I was Googling baby development. He cried... I cried... I panicked that I messed him up and kept checking his soft spot to make sure it wasn’t swelling while I was crying.”
The fact that she was looking up baby development certainly makes this one even funnier. At the end of the day, dropping the phone on the baby is something that happens to every mom (and dad)
10 Left & Right Shoes... It's All The Same!
Michelle told us about the time that she goofed:
“I took my kids out shopping and didn't realize until I got home that I put my eight-month-olds' shoes on the wrong feet.”
Who hasn’t that happened to? At least it’s an easy fix if Mom notices right away that her toddler’s shoes are on the wrong feet. Fortunately for Michelle, her kid was only eight months old at the time and not running around anywhere yet. After it happens once, moms usually develop the habit of doing a boot/shoe check before leaving the house. This is an especially handy thing to do once they start putting shoes on themselves.
9 Forgetting To Buckle
When you’re not yet used to buckling children into the car seat each and every time, it can be easy to forget to do it at first. Anne told us:
“My fiancé did a bad thing once. We were pushing baby around in the stroller with the car seat attached while at the mall and baby wasn’t buckled in and when we went to leave he put baby’s car seat in the car and we drove home and I went to pull him out and he wasn’t even buckled!!! Thank God the mall wasn’t far from the house but I gave him a lot of trouble for it anyways.”
8 The Importance Of Tasting Food
When either one or both parents love spicy food, it can be hard to avoid giving into the baby. Obviously, it’s imperative not to do it but what about when the restaurant misreads the order and prepares the wrong noodles? Julie told us:
“We ordered take-out and served the baby his plate of noodles first without realizing that they have given us spicy noodles when we said ‘not spicy’. My poor baby started crying, threw himself on the ground crying. He was 18 months.”
On the bright side, both mom and dad can now get away with saying the chocolate they’re eating is “spicy.”
7 Sizzlin'... Tears
Speaking of spicy foods, Ginny’s blunder certainly has us sympathizing with her poor baby. She told us:
“I was chopping jalapeños when my daughter was about eight-months-old and then went to wipe her tears. Poor kid!”
Ouch! Anyone who has ever de-seeded and cut up jalapeños will instantly understand the blunder in this one as the child would have gone through a rather painful time. In cases like this, it’s especially important to rinse as much as possible. Surprisingly, Ginny’s daughter didn’t need to go to the hospital but sometimes a trip to the ER can most certainly be warranted in such a situation.
6 A Face Full Of Milk
As messy as babies and children, in general, are on their own, sometimes, it’s actually the parents’ fault! Kristine told us about the time that she was super tired and made a major goof:
“With my first child, I was really tired but it was my turn to wake up for the first round of night-feeding. I prepared the bottle, grabbed my son and started feeding him. Everything was fine at first but when I re-positioned the bottle, the top completely fell off and my son got a face full of milk. Turns out I hadn’t screwed the top on properly.”
5 Not Watching Where She Was Going
Amber simply told us: “I bumped my baby’s head on the fridge when I was turning around.”
Frankly, who hasn’t this happened to? Whether the fridge, the corner of the wall or any other obstacle in the way… the baby’s head just has a way of attracting it! Well, not exactly, but the parents’ exhaustion coupled with not paying attention to the surroundings sure has a way of creating such incidences. On the bright side, the baby was A-okay but it certainly goes without saying that paying attention to the baby’s head is of the uttermost importance at all times.
4 Unsafe Sleeping Habits
Whether co-sleeping or crib sleeping, practicing safe sleeping habits is of uttermost importance. Mina told us about her moment of inattention:
“When my first son was a baby I was always really tired and often fell asleep with him on me. The one night in bed I woke up to him crying on the floor. Luckily it was carpet and the bed wasn’t high but OMG I was devastated lol.”
Although she can laugh about it now because her son didn’t get hurt, it’s nonetheless important to at least place the baby in the middle of the bed without a blanket or pillow.
3 It's All On Video
As much as we, as parents, try to get every moment on camera, sometimes these moments have a way of just happening on their own. Stephanie told us about the time that she caught her son falling right on camera:
“I was giving my 14-month-old a bath and recording him singing ‘Row row your boat’. He stood up, slipped and fell face first in the tub… and I got it all on camera. He’s fine! No scratches but I’m still crying.”
Fortunately, he was all right but getting an anti-slip mat for the bathtub may be a good idea just in case.
2 Honey, You Took The Diaper Bag, Right?
Never mind diapers, there’s another integral baby essential that parents often forget: clothes! Nicole explained:
“Hubby and I have left the house without bringing shoes or a jacket for my son! It was early in the morning so he was still in his sleeper and we didn't notice until we went to get him dressed. My friend had to lend us clothes for him! We've also left the house with no diaper bag.”
When they are itty-bitty babies, shoes aren’t all that important but a jacket certainly would have been, especially if the weather was on the colder side. It’s a good thing the friend was able to help.
1 Forgetting The Diaper
We already covered the story of one mom who forgot to put a diaper on her daughter on a long car ride but there’s another parenting goof involving diapers that also happens all too often. While potty-training, Lexie realized that she made a huge mistake when she left to run errands with her son:
“I forgot to put on a pull-up for my potty training 2-year-old when we went out to do errands. He was in his underwear the entire time. Luckily we didn’t have any accidents.”
Oh no! Fortunately, toddlers in the midst of potty-training can have a way of surprising us.
References: Interviews with moms.