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I think my son was about 2.5 when I brushed his teeth one morning and, upon smelling his breath afterwards, discovered I'd grabbed the tube of miconazole (damn yeasties!) instead of the toothpaste.

I'm going to be a horrible commenter and break the "only your own stories rule" --One of the parenting mags used to have a section like this and often it was the "I fed him apple juice! The horror!" but once it was really good-- this woman's toddler didn't really enjoy the car wash. One day they are driving through and he begins to get upset and she's talking to him & singing & trying to comfort him and it's not working like it normally does so she turns around to check on him and realizes his window is open. There are giant foaming brushes reaching for him, and he's splattered with soap. I'm not re-telling it as well as she did but let me assure you that I laughed for a good hour after reading it.


When my first child was about 6 months old, it was at Christmas time and I thought it would be cozy to have some lit candles around. I lit one and left it on a low shelf and went to grab a glass of juice. While I was way, of course, the baby pulled herself up using the shelf and grabbed for the lit candle. Fortunately, she was only hurt by the wax, not the flame. But boy, did I feel like crap for being so stupid.

Another quick one: around the same time with my first baby, I was alone with her in the car at night. I foolishly left the baby bag was within reach of her carseat and somehow she reached in there and pulled out the baby Tylenol. She sucked on the squeeze bulb in the eyedropper thingie and it broke, spilling liquid Tylenol all over her face, mouth etc. I didn't see it until we arrived at home (her carseat was directly behind the driver seat and it was dark). Seeing the Tylenol all over her mouth sent me into a panic and I called poison control, shaking like a leaf the whole time. They told me she would have to have consumed 3 entire bottles of that stuff for it to be a worry. (Whew!)


There have been a few Bad Mommy moments for me in my 8.5 years of parenting, lol.

I too watched my 4 month old son fling himself off our bed. I just stood there and thought "He's falling off the bed!"

Same baby: Nursing him in a rocking chair late one night and falling asleep. He rolled right off my lap and onto the floor.

Second baby: I put her to bed one night only to have her wake up an hour later screaming. I hadn't put a diaper on her and she was soaking wet.

One for my husband (can I tattle on him?): We used to put a heating pad down on the bassinette before putting the baby down (removing the pad before actually putting the baby in). One night, he didn't remove it. Third baby was laying on a heating pad for hours. I shudder now when I think about it and then laugh when I realize that's how tired we were.


Oh! Karyn: We did a similar thing with the tylenol once. At the docs while getting a 2 month shot for our fourth, they gave me a little trial bottle and I put it in my bag. Later at home our third got a hold of it and drank it all. I called poison control and they said they get at least one call a week about those little trial bottles. Apparantly just throwing it in the bag is pretty common!


Over Thanksgiving 2003, my 2 year old fell off the waterbed she'd been bouncing on with her sister and older cousins. My husband was napping and I was lying on the couch reading all my sister-in-law's People magazines. I didn't see it so I didn't know how she landed or what she hit - except that it wasn't her head. She was sobbing but I thought she was just scared and calmed her down with a bath and some milk. We even left them with the girls GPs and went out for an anniversary dinner that night.

It wasn't until the next day that I realized she wasn't using her arm and would cry in pain when it was raised. After waiting over an hour in the filthy ER of the local hospital without a single person ahead of us being seen, we decided to cut our visit short and drove the 9 hours home to our own hospital where we were in and hour in less than 45 minutes - with a diagnosis and casting of hairline fracture of the humerus.

Oddly enough, I don't feel bad about the bed or leaving the first ER but I can't believe I didn't know she'd broken a freaking LIMB.


i live in constant, CONSTANT fear of CX vaulting off the bed. that kid is quick!

when we left the hospital, we buckled CX into his car seat but then forgot to fasten the seatbelt over it. i was already in tears because i could feel each and every pothole and pebble in the road on the way home, threatening to burst the seams of my incision, and when i realized that the seat belt wasn't fastened, i panicked and went into what could be described as hysterics. looking back, i don't know that we had to fasten the seat belt since the car seat's base was strapped to the back seat, but at the time i was convinced that the three of us were in imminent danger--CX would be thrown from the car in a crash and i would bleed to death because my incision would open up and NC would somehow spontaneously combust.

lately, with CX on the edge of walking, he is climbing over us while we're sitting on the floor with him. on a couple of occasions, he has lurched over my knees to fall forward and bonk his head. i just can't catch him quickly enough. it's tricky to let him try things by himself without hovering over him to make sure he's not going to be injured.

and now i am going to tattle on NC. CX has eczema, and we put a little elidel cream on his cheeks and one elbow each night. one week, we were dealing with our first-ever diaper rash. as we were getting CX ready for bed, NC grabbed the tube of elidel when he was diapering CX instead of the tube of burt's bees ointment. the two tubes are almost identical in size, so it was an easy mistake to make in the low light of bedtime. but poor CX was miserable and cried all night!


When my daughter was about 14 months I was preparing dinner while, for once, she was wandering around the house amusing herself. Suddenly I realized that I had not heard a sound from her for quite some time. I called her name, no response. I ran around the house trying to find her, no luck. Finally I found her down in the basement. She had crawled through the cat door, gone down the stairs by herself, and was happily toddling around our dirty, power tool, glass and loose screw filled basement.


I'm another one who fell asleep in the rocking chair and dropped the nursing baby on the floor. It was my second day home from the hospital, and 10 minutes later the visiting nurse showed up to check the baby's jaundice and I told her what had happened. She looked him over for head injuries but I was sure she was going to report me.

Then there was the time I let one of the kids (probably two or three) play with a plastic bag. Never mind the warning label that said "this is not a toy." Doh!


About 5 yrs ago, when my son was 2.5, I opened up the windows of our apt to let the spring air in. I was in the living room and let my son play in his room. Play he did. He pushed the screen out the window and it landed 2 stories down. I walked in to see him standing on his bed peering out the open window.


Oh, and for Tea -- one of my friends didn't realize her son had broken his LEG until two days after the fact. She's a nurse, and her husband's a doctor, and they still didn't realize that something was really wrong. Luckily for everyone it was only a greenstick fracture.


Another baby-on-the-floor story!

When my first was about two weeks old, he had his days and nights mixed up. One night, when I was just about catatonic from exhaustion, I had finished feeding him on the couch and thought, "If I just scooch down, I can rest my head on the arm of the couch and get some sleep while he just lays here." Ha. I DID fall asleep and when my body relaxed, I let go of him and he rolled right out of my arms onto the floor. I was hysterical. He, of course, having only gone about six inches onto a carpeted floor, didn't cry at all, just looked up at me like, "The hell?"


Ok, I haven't done anything terrible to my own babies yet (but I'm SURE I will), but I was once watching this woman's baby for her while she played a game of ice hockey. He seemed interested in the oyster crackers served with my food, so I started feeding them to him carefully. I kept stuffing them into his mouth slowly but steadily. Apparetnly he was too young to swallow them frequently, more like mushing them around in there. Well, he started CHOKING on them. I flipped him over and patted them out, but I was mortified as people in the restaurant watched me do this to someone else's child. I did confess to the mom and she never asked me to watch him again. Ooops.


I put N. down on the floor at Sports Authority while I was trying on shoes and let him crawl around. Two minutes later, I look over, and he's chewing on one of those little packs of silica that come in the shoe boxes to keep them dry.

And I didn't have my cell phone with me, and the jerks at the store wouldn't let me use the phone, so I finally decided to drive home to call poison control. Fortunately, they reassured me that, while he'd probably be very thirsty, it wouldn't make him sick.

With D, the worst parenting moment was probably when he climbed out of the cart at Costco and fell on his head. And then he wonders why we don't let him ride in the body of the cart anymore?


I hope this helps JoAnna feel just a little better...but I did the exact same thing as she did when my son only a couple months old. I had gone shopping with him at the mall and unhooked the straps of the carrier portion of his carseat. It was winter, so I had a cover over him. So when I latched the carrier back into the base, I forgot to rehook the straps of his carseat. I didn't realize my error until I arrived at my friend's house 15 minutes later...and it was a snowy, slippery drive. I was wracked with guilt afterward, and I'm still not sure if I've told my husband yet a year later.

Another time when he was about 10 months old, he was standing on the couch looking over the back (where his toybox was), and fell head-first to the floor. The scariest part was that his head arched back as he fell...the spinal injury I imagined from it gripped me with fear. I held him and sobbed "I'm sorry" over and over (once I verified that he was moving unassisted first).

I give him all the love I can, but man I feel like the worst mother in the world sometimes.


My daughter was around three months old. I was leaving her with my husband to get a cup of coffee with my best friend who just flew into town, after being gone few months. I gave her a kiss and strapped her into her swing. I must have been so excited that I forgot to put the tray on, and as soon as I turned my back she SCREAMED. I looked back, and there she was, hanging by the strap that was now across her lap, head practically touching the ground. I was so scared. I ended up spending the night in.


Oh, where to begin? I've done the falling asleep in the chair and dropping my month-old baby on the floor routine. Followed by much guilt.

I also forgot to strap him in his car seat once, but it was relatively recent. He was at least 2. I discovered that he wasn't strapped in when he started hitting my arm and when I turned around to see what was going on, discovered him standing in the area between the front seats wearing the biggest smile. Oops.


When my son was a month or so old, he fell asleep nursing, so I brought him up to his room to put him in his crib. I lay him down on the changing table instead (in an exhausted stupor). It didn't register until I was back downstairs for a minute or two - I flew back up those stairs, and he was still there fast asleep.



When my son was in third grade, we lived in a neighborhood that was perfect for a cozy little family drive in the morning: spouse and I would drop our son off at the back "path" to his elementary school, and then spouse would drop me at work, and head off himself. We used the back path at the school because it had lighter motor vehicle traffic and no buses.

Well, one wintry morning, which had started out fairly icy, but was warming and melting, we dropped our baby off. We did notice that the foot-traffic was a bit lighter than usual, but it had been one of those mornings--alarm snafus, pop tarts, lost homework, etc.--and we were running a little late, so we didn't think too much of it.

At about 9:30, a woman I'd never met before called me at my office. THE SCHOOL WAS CLOSED BECAUSE OF THE ICE. And it was empty. The good samaritan, a mom whose child attended the school too, found my 8 year old leading a 6 year old around by the hand, knocking on windows and trying all of the doors. She lived across the street and saw them from her front window. She had to talk very, very fast to get him to go home with her, too--because, of course, she was a stranger. He wasn't even going to let the first grader go with her, and told her he was going to WALK HOME (across about three major roads) and wait on the porch for us to come home. She finally convinced him because he thought her own daughter looked well taken care of.

I was (and still am) MORTIFIED. I had abandoned my child! Since then, at our house, we check the school closing lists every morning, even in the spring, when it's sunny and 70 degrees. And when my son, now ten and big with the crackin' wise, wants to be cute, he says, "Mom, do you remember when you abandoned me? Anything could have happened."

Gods, I'm mortified even now to hit post. The guilt is still a bit agonizing. At the time all I could think of was "Worst. Mom. Ever."


Car seat mishaps must be pretty common. I went with my mother-in-law to the grocery store when my daughter was about 2 months old. I had the harness unclipped in the store so that I could pick her up when we got inside the building. When we got back to the car, I strapped the car seat back into the car, but forgot to refasten the harness. Luckily, it was only about 3 minutes of driving to our next stop. When we got out of the car, we both noticed immediately. I saw the look on my mother-in-law's face, and I was hoping that the ground would just swallow me up right there.

Another time, the baby, now about 3 months, had fallen asleep and I had laid her down on the bed for a minute to run to the bathroom. I then was called into the other room for a minute, and by the time I got back she was just about to fall off the bed (read her head was hanging off already). She didn't actually fall (the fall was only about 6 inches, thank goodness) but my mother-in-law walked in right behind me, and, again, I felt like I was such a bad mom.
I have to say, though, she's still alive and developing normally, so I must be doing something right.


I have a bad habit of leaving sippy cups and drink boxes in the car for far longer than I should. One afternoon, I was loading Ellie into the van while Isabelle waited next to me. Ellie was arching her back in an attempt to escape buckling, and I watched out of the corner of my eye while Isabelle reached in, grabbed a very, very old drink box of milk, and took a big sip, then spit it out all over the grocery store parking lot. And all I could do was laugh, horrible mother that I am.


When Christopher was just learning to pull up we were in my bedroom putting away laundry. He kept trying to pull up on the laundry basket and knocking it over. I got the bright idea to empty the laundry basket and let him play IN it. He was having a great time until, once again, he tried to pull up. I turned around just in time to see him capsize the laundry basket, fall onto his face and then go heels over head and land on his back. He just flopped like a fish. It was terrifying but it happened so fast that I couldn’t stop it. I immediately thought that he had broken his neck and would be paralyzed for life. Thank God all he ended up with was a split lip!


When my daughter was about 7 months old, she was just learning to stand. I took her in the bathroom so I could pee and sat her on the floor. While I was pulling my pants down, she somehow managed to pull herself up to standing by holding on to the bathtub. The next thing I knew, I looked over and she was energetically SUCKING on my RAZOR. She had the entire thing in her mouth. I was convinced her entire toungue was going to be hanging by a thread. I managed to pry her mouth open and get it out without causing major damage. It scared the crap out of me, though.

When she was about a month old, I was carrying her around the house cradled in my arms. I was walking from one room to the other and wasn't paying attention. Somehow I managed to bash her head right into the frame of the door. She seemed ok, but I was pretty traumatized.


Oh I have a REALLY bad one. And it wasn't me but I was the "victim" of it. Back in the early seventies when I was around one year old my mom had me in a carseat (amazing for the time) but somehow didn't strap it in correctly to the car. She was cruising through a busy intersection in LA and I managed to open the car door. The entire carseat, with me in it, fell out onto Sunset Boulevard!! Needless to say, I managed to escape somewhat unscathed, thank God. I shudder to think of what could have happened!


This is especially to make Kimberly feel better. Last year, we dropped our then second grader off at school, during parent-teacher conference week. His conference was that afternoon, and I told him to just wait at the school for us, because his conference was right at 2:45 (when school ends.)

So hubby and I are poking around the home depot, it's about noon, and my cell phone rings. It's the lady in the office, saying that C is sitting on the bench in the office waiting, saying we are supposed to be there to meet him because his conference is right after school. Immediately I look at my hubby in horror as I realize that school got out at 11:30, since it's CONFERENCE week.

When we finally picked him up, he was looking at us like some abandoned puppy. I still feel the guilt. And of course, now he's 8 1/2, and makes jokes about it all the time. Hubby of course says stuff like "we just made a mistake, he's fine, don't worry so much." I however double-check what day it is and what time school gets out every day.


I love reading these--can't wait until i have some badmama stories of my own. (But I hope they aren't too bad.)
Not a bad mama story, more a holy fucking shit story:
When I was little, we lived in Africa.
My mom was carrying me ( i was about two) and we were chased by an angry wildebeast. My mom said she had to jump into our moving car, which my dad had opened the door of.

The car wash story above is INSANE! I don't know whether to laugh or shudder.

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