Tribal Wives of the Blogosphere

Sometimes I enjoy being a shit disturber; I really, really do.

A couple weeks back, Vix wrote a post about this show called Tribal Wives (never heard of it myself). Gist of it is an urban woman is taken to live in another more hand-to-mouth culture. She learns lessons and grows and learns to appreciate what she ....snooze.

So, Vix turned it around and made a tongue-in-cheek Tribal Wives rules of survival for Britain.

Heather read it and decided to make it a meme. She wrote the Tribal Wives in Rural Finland post and tagged myself, Very Bored in Catalunya, Gooner Jamie, and Cate. Missy M and London City Mum got in on the action too.

They all did awesome funny posts. I definitely recommend you read them. Because after what I post you're probably not going to want to read me any more. You see, I'm perfectly aware that most mommy blog readers are mommy bloggers themselves. Not that I really like being called a mommy blogger, but with "Readily A Parent" as my title, hey, might as well go for it.

Sometimes my friends who don't write and/or read blogs ask what exactly a Mommy Blogger is. So this post is for them. If you yourself are a Mommy Blogger and easily offended, well, just pretend you didn't see this. And for God's sake don't unsubscribe from my blog. I actually care about my stats. I'll send you a big jar of Nutella as an apology gift.

In order to survive as a Mommy Blogger you must:

1. Have Kids
But not just any kids. You must have the most magically wonderful, photogenic, perfect angels who sit and do crafts and can be homeschooled with ease. Your children will all have the names starting with the same letter or look so insanely alike that one wonders if you've learned how to clone in your kitchen.
OR You should have two or three kids that are general nuisances, annoying and brat like and make your life a living hell so you can complain about it all the time on your blog, like I did here.
BONUS POINTS: If your child has special needs or is ill and/or you concieved after infertility. Super bonus points if you have all of the above.

2. Have a Brand
This is almost more important than having kids. After all, what's the point of blogging if no one's going to recognise you? I think we all know the dirty D word for the most recognised mommy blog brand. But, come on, there's more. Ways to create your brand recognition include: have a cutesy logo like Heather, or run a carnival like Tara, or call yourself something outrageous like a Bad Mother or Redneck Mommy (this seems a predominantly Canadian thing to do)

And the reason why you must have a brand? Because you must

3. Be Willing to Write About Idiotic "Mom-Related" Crap.
There's the Nutella nutties, or the chocolate weetabix whoring,  or formula sell-outs. Then there's all the crap sponsored posts about makeup and insurance and all kinds of other things that we moms are supposed to be interested in.

And if you do write about crap, you must

4. Be Willing to Work For Free
Or for a free sample or something to give-away. Yup, because name-dropping about your connection to Huggies will build your blog for you. Everyone knows Mommy Bloggers are in it for the sense of community and the money they might make is secondary. Surely none of us sat down and thought "I might make a little money if I start blogging."

You must also:

5. Hardly Ever Mention the Child's Father
They don't exist and all this hard work is done by us, the mommies. The one exception to this is the Daddy bloggers who are obviously married to emasculating bitches that make them do everything around the house and take care of the kids because they happen to make the greater salary. Of course, some Dads are in the military which therfore builds your blog credentials because your family is sacrificing for its country. If you do mention the child's father, he is either the DWLM (Dickwad who left me) or he's DH (I've no idea: dreary hole-licker?).

6. Know Twitter, Facebook, Digg, Reddit ....
It's not enough to write your blog, you must also write posts to every social media site known to man while simultaneously commenting on 100 other posts each day so that you gain traffic back to your blog. If you begin to feel like a flag-lady rather than a writer, that's fine. Just hold that "slow" sign high, lady.

7. But Not Care About Your Blog Stats
It's best if you pretend you don't even know what they are when someone asks (though if you're proud of them, make sure you have sitemeter installed so curious people can look it up). You should laugh about it when you make it higher on technorati or your Twitter Influence score goes up. Pretend innocence and lack of knowledge whenever it seems you might be becoming popular and blame it on your natural abilities - you know, like in high school. If your stats are low then blame it on the cabals and cliques, just like it was the popular girl's fault that you couldn't get a date in junior high. Overall, though, never, ever admit that you might be blogging to be popular or make money. You're only doing it because you love writing and the sense of community it gives you. Otherwise you're not a mom, you're a brand. And we wouldn't want that.

8. Be Juicy
There's only so far post-natal depression, a disabled child, or a penchant for talking about your sex life will get you. You must be prepared to engage in some juicy gossip, especially about other bloggers or if you're really lucky, a celebrity. Be prepared to know about all the relationships and infighting in the entire mommy blogosphere and have an opinion on it all. (Notice I didn't link to anyone on this one, that's because I'm actually not into gossiping about others).

9. Stir Up Controversy To Be A Hero
Like if a waitress at a zoo asked you to stop breastfeeding, the only response it obviously to tweet, blog, and facebook it saying you can't believe it happened to you - before giving the offending company a chance to respond. Or stir up a hashtag drama over a silly ad that moms can get easily worked up about a la Motrin Moms.

10. Never, Ever Offend the Other Mommy's
You might find yourself at the bottom of a playground pile-up.

Ooops. Please, don't jam your elbow into me too hard; my cesearean scar is still sore and my breasts are tender from nursing.

I'm such a mom. Sigh. Guess that means I'm a mommy blogger too.


  1. Haaaaa!!! You nailed it, Dara. I think I fit the bill on every one, except I'm really suckish at technical stuff and I esp. do like to post about my husband, particularly his adorble toe thumb, who is also a superhero and has saved many lives. Do I get extra points on #9 for that one? Love this post. xoxoxo

  2. ha ha ha, I love this and I love you! Brilliant and so spot on. i think you may well get extra points for #9 but have them taken away from you again for #10


  3. I have just found you and I love you already. That is all.

  4. I am massively offended by this post. However, rather than make a cogent argument, I thought I might make up a hashtag and post something passive aggressive about you on Twitter in order that I don't compromise my brand as only blogging for the sense of sisterhood.

  5. Fabulous post, I'm sure I'll be popping back a few times to read your comments. When I'm not feeding nutella to the cat and polishing my brand.

  6. I really am going to have to work harder at this - already this week I've discovered I'm not posh enough to reach Not Posh level and now I can only claim to achieve one of these criteria - I think you're all picking on me.

  7. I think I've just found out why I am not doing so well. I might whinge a little more.

    Fab post!

  8. I was doing so well, and then sort of lost points. I think I was a "Mummy blogger" but now it looks like I am a free roaming out of a tribe blogger.

    Thank goodness for that.

  9. I am so offended Dara. I thought we were BFFs for EVA! Don't know why I ever bovvered sharing with you all that blogging statistics and comunity stuff. What a waste of effort. I was only trying to help you. I'm speechless. I really am. How can you? Why? Why?

  10. Hey, I'm one of those husbands - whats all this bad mouthing my wife about?

    She feeds the kids, cleans the house, washes our clothes and still manages to write 200 words to please you lot!

    Some people are never satisfied....

  11. I didn't realise you knew my wife, you captured her perfectly.

  12. oh ermm jeez, ive tried so hard not to be these things but my twitter feed is full of this even though my blog isnt (yet)

    dont take it personally i think 'mummy bloggers' are a great bunch of ladies but I'm determined I'm not a 'mummy blogger' just a mum who blogs.....

    I might as well just accept the tag and have the sense of belonging to a community!

  13. *giggles* This is hilarious! I would say something witty and all, but I'm not really awake... the whole mummy-blogger-gets-no-sleep thing. ;)

  14. I am a blog brand mummy bitch whore - watch this space - show me the money! Love this - I do think it was a bit drastic to kneecap your child to get a disability vote! ;)

  15. I love this post. So true! I've not been in the game long but already these things are definitely apparent.

    You've summed it up rather nicely xx


  16. I'd probably whinge furiously about this post on Twitter but I'm too busy forcing my children to review oven cleaner x

  17. I just want to belong! First I was Welsh, then I moved to England, then I moved back to Wales and I was English. I just get over that and "find me" then I have a kid. So then I was a mummy blogger, then I wasn't because I now find out I don't follow all the rules properly. Somebody please tell me what I need to do to conform?
    Yours The Moiderer (not a brand is it?) (#wishing-someone-would-put-the-rules-in-the-book-for-me-to-follow)

  18. Right to the bone, priceless and hilarious.

  19. I actually find this strange that people find it funny. Maybe it's cos I don't do any of these things but I fail to find something quite so mean-spirited funny. Sorry, perhaps I have had a sense of humour bypass today but this just seems like sniping and bad grace.

  20. You know as a daddy, I think someone needs to start a campaign about breast feeding 'cos I get very offended when waitresses tell me to stop doing it in public. I mean, it's not like I don't pay them or anything...


    P.S. A bit of sniping and bad grace never hurt anybody.

  21. Christ. Now I don't even know where I stand. There's me thinking I was a big shot Mommy Blogger and then you come along and put us in our place.

    GEEZE! Well excuse me while I wade through boxes of free shit in my porch specially delivered for Quincy, Queeny, Quinton, Quintessa and er, Bob. (#IAmFail)

    *giggles behind hand*

    For The Dotterel:

  23. Hilarious. Can it be read out at the next Cybermummy?

  24. Great post - I sense a venting behind the scenes here! Now am on twitter with a notepad trying to decipher the hashtag caps lock code but I can't do it?! Was being dumb on the list if so I must get extra points for that. Now feel I am lacking in free stuff and children with matching names - oh hang on, my OHs boys names both start with H...... *hangs head in associated shame*

  25. Scathing, satirical and wonderful. I saw you'd written this on Twitter this morning but had to teach a class and was desperate to read it.

    Anyone who takes the huff over this is taking themselves way too seriously. This is hilarious.

    Go Brand Readily!!

  26. Brilliant! Genius! And, oops I just blogged about P.N.D. - just a blip! 3.10am here in NZ & I can't sleep, so that must make me a real member of the tribal wives blogosphere?! Thanks for a laugh :)

  27. As I new Mommy Blogger, I'm taking everything you say on board. I'm due in October so don't yet know how cute / irritating my child will be. While I wait to find out, will my own disability (a spare rib that scuppered my chances of ever becoming a prima ballerina) get me any bonus blogging points? Or do I need to take more extreme measures? Leave my husband under the pretence that he in fact left me because he could no longer stand my inability to differentiate between Nutella and ridiculously expensive face creams and was sick of the chocolate-smeared pillow cases that adorned our former marital bed? Just a thought.

  28. I take offence that you are putting all us mommy bloggers in the same basket. Yes I have a large family of eight kids Tammy, Tyrone, Tit, Typeface, Tilly, Tommy, Todger and Tosspot but we are a large loving Christian family but do have a sense of humour. In these tough economic times I don't see what is so wrong about flogging haemmorhoid cream on my blog to make ends meet. I have been suffering from post natal depression for fourteen years now so please don't make light of this.

    Tabitha (Mommy to Eight Tiny Ts)

  29. Hi

    My first time here, just popping by via MisssyM's twitter, so I guess number 6 really is true. As well as quite a few of the others.

  30. LMAO, classic post! I predict you will do very well!

    You just missed one I think - have you noticed just how many Mummy bloggers want to become published authors too?

    Mich x

  31. I am still laughing at EmmaK's comment

    *wipes tears from eyes*

    Sorry, what were you saying?

    LCM x

  32. hehehe, and how come that everyone who is offended is called anonymous?
    Come on, let's have some fun and not take ourselves so seriously!

  33. I'm supposed to be offended, but you linked, so fuck you too and good job on the link bait.

    That's what you wanted, right?

  34. Wow. Okay. So I won't lie. I do track my stats. Today I got ten times as many visits as a normal post day. And I'm not sure if you noticed, but JESSICA GOTTLEIB COMMENTED ON MY BLOG!
    It's sad that *this* is the post that's attracted all the attention. I've written some really intelligent stuff too you know. But I intend to respond to all your comments. Yes, even the asinine ones. However, not now. Dreary hole-licker and I have a date with our tiny TV and a rented movie.

  35. I think I've definately done all of them - have bad kids, have random name (am not a porn star people!!)
    Love it , love it, love it

  36. This is very funny. I qualify on point one - just found out one of my kiddies is autistic, but I fall flat on the rest. Guess I don't qualify as a mommy blogger then. Btw should I know who Jessica Gottleib is???

  37. @Naomi(Organic): The Superhero Toe Thumb just gets you extra points all around. Does he *know* you blog about his toe thumb, though?

    @Shari: Thanks! Nice to see you here.

    @Heather: I thought I'd get extra for number 8, actually. This whole post is your fault, you know.

    @Cate: And vice-versa too.

    @Anonymous: I've already created the hashtag for you: it's #ouTrageousB*TCH and it's my brand!

    @Bored: You're not supposed to polish your brand, you're supposed to polish the cat with Nutella and brand your pussy. Or... hmmm... that's not right either!

    @MrsW: This was indeed a conspiracy to make you feel like a git. Sorry, but you're the one that pointed it out. See number 8.

  38. @My Dotty Man: It means you've got really big muscles and we all think you're a dear. Now fetch me a cup of tea, bring the paper, and give me a footrub when you've done bathing the baby.

    @Nat: Yes, whining always helps. Have you got an ill child or a bad marraige you can share?

    @Mummy: No! Don't leave the tribe. Here, we can gossip about each other on Twitter and that'll get you back in the fold.

    @Vix: No no, you have it all wrong. I did this for us! Please don't destroy our sense of community!

    @Anonymous: Hmmmm....who's your wife then? 200 words isn't much. Tell her to make it 500 and I'll add her to my new blogroll.

  39. @Jamie: Yes she emailed me after the post I wrote singing your praises as a blogger. She may be under the mistaken impression that we're having an online affair. Sorry about that.

    @Dawn: Might as well - it's all about the community after all.

    @Marilyn: That's it, now write a good sad post about your lack of sleep so you can get some more followers.

    @MilitaryMom: I didn't kneecap him, I swear. I just sort of stuck my foot out as he was running by, accidentally on purpose.

    @Beck: Thanks and thanks for dropping by.

  40. @dulwich: That's it. Good job! If they like the oven cleaner I know a PR rep for a pooper scooper company. You could combine it with a potty training post!

    @The_Moiderer: It's all here. Just follow these rules and you'll be a top mommy blogger in no time. And you'll have that ultimately important sense of community!

    @Missbehaving: Thank you. I aim to please.

    @Anonymous: Yeah, so, well, here's the thing. I tried really hard to make it not mean-spirited sounding by using hyperbole to increase the humour. However, to each their own. You can leave your real name, though, you know. I promise not to tweet or blog gossipy bits about you.

    @Steve: So true. The breastfeeding thing, I mean. Come on, equal rights and all. You should be just as entitled. And them darn waitresses need to be put in their place - with bad grace.

  41. @Jay: Yes, your children are such angels. They'll probably adore those freebies and play with them ever so nicely. Do you still need the name tags to tell them apart?

    @Nickie: Thanks for helping out The Dot. As for your blog, it just needs a little more whining and you'll be fine.

    @DeerBaby: Ha! That would be awesome.

    @MrsHall: Yeah,so the caps lock thing? That's because I don't actually make any money from my blog and have a cheapshit laptop with a wonky keyboard. As for behind the scenes venting, you should know, I'm an in your face venter, really. Hate gossiping but love bitchiness.

  42. @MommyGeek: Thanks! Nice to see you here.

    @Missy: Can't believe you prioritised teaching over reading my blog. Really? The lessons you have learnt here today far exceed any you could give in the classroom *snigger, cough*

    @Sarah: The PND post is okay, just follow it up with something snipey. You can b*tch about me if you want. It's a brand thing. I'll understand.

    @Contented?: Based on that comment, I think you're going to do just fine as a blogger and a parent! Giving you some bloggy love now cause I love your blog.

    @Emma/Tabitha: Wow you must be the awesomest mommy blogger ever! Do you ever get the nipple and the hemmorhoid cream mixed up? Will the hemmorhoid cream tighten your nipples or the nipple cream soften your hemmorhoids? Just wondering. That could be a good take on your next review in order to create a little controversy and all.

  43. @Digz: And would you believe that only a few short months ago I swore I would never use Twitter?

    @Michelle: What?! I didn't know about that!

    @LCM: Yes, well, Emma's even funnier on her own blog.

    @Cartside: I know. Some people take themselves too seriously, I think. Like if they left their name with a negative comment I would launch a vendetta or something. Um, so, I have something to do....

    @Jessica: Is that really you!
    It's actually the first time link bait has ever worked for me.

    @Readily: Oh, wait, that's me. Yeah, so, the movie was pretty good. Harry Brown. Violence and mayhem on a Wednesday night.

    @BNM: Darn, I've been reading your blog all this time waiting for the porn!

    @Tilly: Sorry. Only Autistic? I've got a friend who's kid is autistic and ADHD. My own son is LD, ADHD and probably ODD. You're going to have to try harder. (seriously, though, I'm really sorry to hear that. Check out www.supportforspecialneeds.com if you haven't already - they've got some awesome parents on there who have been through it all)

  44. hahahaha #6 cracked me up! Great post! =)

  45. @Tilly no, you really shouldn't give a crap who I am. Here's hoping you are able to get every service available for your autistic child. My understanding is that early intervention is incredibly helpful. (I also don't think that Austic Kids are necessarily broken and need "fixing")

    And yes, really your link bait worked.

  46. @Activity Mom: Thanks. It's lovely to be able to make fun of bloggers and flagpeople all at once. Am I the only one that mutters "yes, we know you're slow" whenever I drive by one?

  47. @Jessica,
    Seriously? Twice in one post? Are you trying to give me a heart attack?
    It's okay if Tilly doesn't know who you are. She's a Brit and we all know how "up themselves" they are.
    And I agree with you about children with autism, especially Aspergers, not being "broken." People are not things to be fixed.

  48. Well then, let's just call ourselves a pair of undeniably funny bitches, eh?

    Seriously, though, this post was fuuuuunny. Not to mention brave. The Children of the Korn are totally going to be after you, if you know what I mean ;)

  49. I'll just keep my head down and hope no-one notices me. Or that I get bonus points...

  50. I'm sitting here trying to come up with a witty response, you know, to keep my brand alive and well, but I can't. Guess I will just hit the wine, write a righteous response and send the trolls in your direction.


    I hope you're wearing your flak jacket though. Jessica seems unhappy. :-)

  51. Are you kidding? I'm a devoted reader at this point. It's funny, and it's right.

  52. Hey Pinkie, send them trolls over - I got a bunny rabbit can take them on! Seriously, I'm not against doing a bit of #8 or #9 in order to up those stats I don't care about.

    As for Jessica, as you can see in the comment below yours, she's "a devoted reader." Wonder if I can put that on my business cards?

  53. That is so offensive! I'm going to have to follow you to keep an eye out for other such offensive posts. Do I still get a jar of nutella?

  54. So that's where I'm going wrong! Thanks for tips! Gots to get me a brand. Or lose a husband.

  55. I am not a mummy - but you are all so great it almost makes me wish I was one. Almost. I'm an auntie, that doesn't count does it? No, I thought not.

  56. I'm flattered! I think this is the first time I've ever beaten Jenny on any sort of list. The only way I win is when she gets moved to another category. :P

    I'm sad to say that I don't think I ever see the trackbacks from all of your backlinks to me. If you weren't joking about that, I guess they don't come through. Hmmm....

    Oh well, once we move in together you can just tell me in person when you've linked to me. ;)


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