11 Moms Reveal the Ways They Wish Their Husbands Wouldn't Spoil the Kids

11 Moms Reveal the Ways They Wish Their Husbands Wouldn't Spoil the Kids

These kids get plenty from their indulgent dads, much to Mom’s dismay.


By Judy Koutsky

My husband travels so much for his job, he’s away from the kids for a good chunk of time. But when he is around, he wants to make up for it by creating special memories. So, the few times he takes the boys to school, he stops at their favorite doughnut place for a special treat. Harmless enough, right? The challenge is that the other 99 percent of the time when I take the boys, we eat a healthy bowl of cereal at home, and then, head to school (hopefully getting there by the time the bell rings). And yet, each morning the kids beg, whine, and plead for me to take them to their favorite doughnut place. It doesn’t matter if the last time they went there was three months ago. I hear, “But daddy always takes us there!” In their eyes, I become the strict (read: not fun) parent, and Daddy is the one who provides yummy, sugary treats before school (which I’m sure the teachers love). When I bring up to my husband how the doughnut run is disruptive, he thinks I’m overreacting. Sound familiar?

Here, 11 other moms share the things their husbands do with the kids that they wished, quite frankly, they wouldn’t.

1. “As divorced parents, we try really hard not to play good cop, bad cop when it comes to the kids, but of course we both love our kids so much, it’s tough. When my husband gets the kids every Wednesday, he takes them for pizza, which is their favorite. I feel like it’s a reward for the transition to Dad’s time.” -- Emily, mom of three

2. “My husband volunteers to be the coach for my kids’ sports teams. It doesn’t make a difference what sport – T-ball, soccer, lacrosse – he’s the first to sign up. The challenge is that means I’m left to cart the other four kids around while he’s coaching the one team. We both work all week, and I’d love weekends to be somewhat relaxing … Maybe I get a morning off, and he gets a morning off. But because he’s always coaching, I’m stuck dragging the other kids to their activities.” -- Marisa, mom of five

3. “Growing up, my parents really limited our TV time, and I do the same. One show a night is all I allow. However, if I’m at work late or away on a business trip, it’s unlimited TV. My husband doesn’t see the harm and sometimes the kids are watching hours and hours of screen time.” -- Lisa, mom of three

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4. “We are trying to sleep-train my two young kids. Each night, they come into our room and try to snuggle in with us. My husband and I agreed that we’ll walk the kids back into their rooms, no matter how many times they do it. The challenge? I’m always the one walking them back to their room. When I nudge him to do it, he’ll suggest that they sleep in our bed ‘just this one time,’ which of course is every time.” -- Frances, mom of two

5. “Tablets and other electronics are a reward in our house. The kids can only get them when they’ve cleaned their room, eat all their veggies, and not hit or tease their siblings. My husband, however, uses the electronics as a babysitter. So if he’s working from home, or making a call from the car, he pulls out the screens. That means the kids want them all the time and forget that it’s a reward, not a right.” -- Monica, mom of three

6. “Traveling on a plane is a nightmare with my kids. The kids know it and use that time to push the envelope and manipulate us. They’ll act even worse than normal, knowing we’ll give in because we don’t want to have a scene in public. Guess which parent buys them tons of snacks and treats before we board, basically rewarding them for their bad behavior.” -- Jennifer, mom of two

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7. “My husband has a sweet tooth and has candy and other treats stashed around the house. I’m always trying to lose weight and eat healthy, so I load the fridge with fruits and veggies. When it’s snack time, guess which parent the kids prefer to give them a snack.” -- Renee, mom of three kids

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8. “Drop-off at school is tough. My kids have a hard time separating. The teacher has told both of us it’s best to drop off, give a quick hug, and then head out. That’s what I do, and I assumed what my husband did. Then, the teacher emailed me that my husband lingers and lingers, and its tough not only on my kids, but on the other kids in the class who want their parents there. The teacher asked me to have a talk with him. I feel like I have three kids.” -- Marsha, mom of two

9. “My husband travels a lot for work. Every time he comes back, he brings the kids a gift. While it’s nice in theory, our house is small and now full of junk – key chains from Austin, stuffed animals from Baton Rouge, a baseball hat from Des Moines – and I asked him to limit the presents. And yet they still keep coming.” -- Rose, mom of four

10. “My 6-year-old doesn’t want to do any activities on the weekend. We signed him up for baseball, and he has a tantrum before each game. I ignore it and take him. When it’s my husband’s term to chauffer, he promises him ice cream afterwards if he behaves. Now, he demands ice cream when I take him.” -- Nancy, mom of one

11. “I tried to implement a no-eating policy in our minivan, because it was starting to smell funky, and there were petrified candy bars and cereal under the seats. I thought everyone was on board, then I found out that the policy is only enforced when Mom is driving. When Dad’s at the wheel, he tells the kids they can eat if they’re really careful. Yeah, like that works for 2- and 4-year-olds.” -- Theresa, mom of two


Judy Koutsky is the former Editorial Director of KIWI magazine, a green parenting publication. She was also Executive Editor of Parenting.com, AOL Parent and BabyTalk.com. Follow her on Twitter @JudyKoutsky.

Image ©iStock.com/nkbimages


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