being a mom

Don’t Tell Any Mom She ‘Looks Tired’

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Perhaps the snarky route is the only way to go. As one suggested I say, “Thanks, I spent a little extra time putting the bags under my eyes this morning. I’m glad to hear I captured the effect I was going for! Do you think the bloodshot eyes are too much or can I get away with it?”

Even worse is hearing this line thrown at me, on a day, when I’m actually NOT tired. What’s the comeback ? Should it be, “That’s weird. I finally got 8 hours of solid sleep?”

What I usually say is, “Thanks,” sarcastically and then go home and fume for twelve hours because I didn’t have a good comeback. I just want to rewind the scene somehow, and actually say, “Well, I may look tired, but you…” See? I have no comeback.

You could argue that people are, well, stupid for pointing out how tired you look. Kidding. What I mean is you could argue that these people are well meaning. I don’t buy it. If they really were well meaning, why don’t they say something like, “You look really tired. Is everything okay?” Or, “You look exhausted. Is there anything I can do?” Nope! It’s always just, “You look exhausted.”

Of course, I could easily say, “I’ve got kids,” as one person suggested and leave it at that. But I’m not that person. I want everyone who speaks to stop saying that sentence, unless you know, for a fact, I’ve been up all night. It hurts. You can’t help that you look tired. And it makes you wonder what you looked like before you had kids.

No one told me, “You look exhausted,” before I had kids. My friend who says I should tell people to “fuck off,” is aligned with another friend who says that I should say, “Yup I am. Thanks Captain Obvious!” Even my fiancé said I should say to people, “Thanks, stupid.” Another person, who too has been through this, says I should say, “You have crappy teeth. But I’m going to get a good night’s sleep tonight. Sorry that sleep won’t fix how you look!” (Man, I just realized how, um, feisty my friends are!)

Should “exhausted” mothers’ remain nice, saying, “Thanks! Have a good day,” as we walk away, muttering, “What a bitch!” under our breath? News Flash! In real life, mothers’ are not photo-shopped.

Ten years, people, ten fucking years of hearing how tired I look, and I still don’t have a good comeback. One day I might just snap and the next person who tells me I look “tired,” I may, indeed, tell them to, “Fuck off!”

(Image:  lightwavemedia /shutterstock)

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