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Parenting Moments the Books Don’t Prepare You For

Parenting Moments the Books Don't Cover

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Parenting Moments the Books Don't Cover

I’ve been parenting for a long time. Nineteen years to be (sorta) exact. I have encountered many, many situations and I have read many, many parenting books. A few situations, such as fevers and nightmares and teething, have been covered in parenting books. The rest? Not so much. For instance, in all of the parenting books I’ve read, I have never ever read the answer to the following true scenarios from my life.

Parenting answers you won't find in parenting books

What do you do when your child begs you to keep the dead (that’s right dead) animal he found and is truly upset when you say no?. Because, after all, “it isn’t bleeding or anything“.

Or how about when your child removes a wart and choses to keep it in a drawer in the kitchen? Because, really, where is the appropriate place to keep a wart once it has fallen off of your body? Not once have I seen that particular issue covered in a parenting manual.

What are you supposed to say when you find out that your son has placed a dead goldfish in his wallet? Nope, not one magazine I have read addressed that one for me.

boy with thinking putty in his eyelashes

Gum in hair? That one is easy. Everyone knows you use peanut butter to get gum out of hair! The real question is, how do you get Thinking Putty of your child’s eyelashes?

Or what do you say to your adorable five-year old son when he shows off his Schleich bull collection to you and happily explains to you he has rated how much he loves each one. He slowly lines them up showing you how he has chosen his favorites…according to the size of their, ah, Prairie Oysters, largest to smallest. No parenting book ever prepared me for that moment.


Every day is an adventure for sure, and more often than not, a scary one! How about you? What is your “favorite” parenting moment?


  1. Judy Small

    Oh Renee! This post is a classic for sure! My dead mole story goes like this: I was in kindergarten or 1st grade and found a dead mole in the morning prior to going to school. I put it in a brown lunch bag and took it to school for show & tell. I remember my teacher was NOT impressed and she told me to get rid of it right away. I was broken hearted. I remember crying because I loved that mole! It was so soft!

  2. Melpub

    Wait! I do know one book that sort of covers this stuff–and which, unfortunately, I found too late: How to Talk so Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk. One of the tips I so wished I’d had when mine were kindergarten-age and younger was: when the kid’s in an all-out screaming tantrum, kneel down with a paper and crayon and say, “Could you draw what’s making you angry?” Friends with young children were happy to have that one, but I think the book covers ways to discuss dead-mole situations. We just had a guinea pig funeral, complete with an Ave Maria and a Doxology . . . meanwhile, getting silly putty, etc. out of eyelashes is tough, but if it’s in a favorite sweater, hand sanitizer (regular old Purell) works! Really!

  3. Peg in Seattle

    Gum in eyelashes? Dead goldfish, moles and warts in kitchen drawers? Renee, your kids are rank amateurs. Try getting correction fluid out of the eyelashes of a four year old.(His teen-age sister had it in her room) It involves a trip to the emergency room. And, because of this same child, I know something NO parent ever wants to know. That cello’s cost more than new furnaces. I’ll leave it to your imagination to figure out how I found this out. (fortunately, our homeowners paid for the cello, but unfortunately, not the furnace).

  4. Melpub

    P.S. Once my son waved his hand–which unfortunately was gripping a pen–so wildly that the pen flew out his hand and landed in his sister’s eye (the white, thank God) which bled . . . when we got to the doc, both kids were laughing and I was having chest pains. She’s fine.

  5. Carolyn

    Those are hilarious…. What about when the 5 year old boy wants to try to save the gopher from the cat… So he sends his 3 year old sister in to pick it up. Massive bleeding ensued, along with screaming after the thing bit a hole in her finger. I Didn’t know who to call to check on the danger of gopher bites, but after a call to ER and poisionous control I was told that gophers are considered clean rodents. I still have never found a parenting book that gives you that info!

  6. corinne

    When I was taking my 4 yr old to get stitches out because he thought jumping wet from hot tub to furniture (20 stitches). Anyways we get half way to Dr and he tells “Gum Nose”. Yes he had gum up his nose and who know if left there it will rot!

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