She wasn’t being serious, people.
Meghan Oeser, an Oak Forest, Ill., mom of six, typed out a profanity-laced missive to her beloved husband, Kevin, before heading to a 48-hour getaway with her girlfriends. It contained helpful pointers, such as, “Dinner will suck” and “Breakfast will be such a (expletive) show that you'll forget to eat and begin to experience the caffeine shakes.”
She posted it on Facebook, where it quickly went viral, racking up more than 150,000 likes and another 100,000-plus shares in a matter of days.
The Note became A Thing. Us Weekly wrote about it. Parents magazine wrote about it.
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And, on cue, the hate mail started rolling in.
“Tons of nasty comments,” Oeser, 37, told me. “ ‘What kind of father doesn’t know his own kids?' “Why is she even having kids?' ‘What kind of father needs a letter?' “
Now, I ask you. Does this read like an actual set of instructions?
“Quinn, Harper and Bailey will go down seamlessly. Just wait. As they lie in their beds, they'll then realize that their tiny mouths are on (expletive) fire, and they'll act as if they’ve just walked 800 (expletive) miles through the Sahara. They will come down, one by one, every (expletive) 5 minutes, for water. Don’t let ANYONE use Quinn’s pink Elsa cup. If she sees this, she will lose her holy (expletive).”
“If you cannot find a nightgown for Penny, keep (expletive) looking. She'll ask for her Minnie Mouse nightgown, but once you put it on, she'll scream in agony because the sleeves are CLEARLY ripping her (expletive) arms off. Just find her Elsa one. Chances are, it’s dirty as (expletive), but so what – so is she. I can’t remember the last time I put soap to that one.”
Remember “Go the (Expletive) to Sleep,” the Adam Mansbach book that shot to the top of Amazon before it was even published? This is the Facebook version.
“The whole thing started as me telling him how to turn on the diffuser,” Oeser said. “Then I thought, ‘I might as well tell him about the sippy cups.’ Then I started drinking wine, and it started getting funny.”
Had she decided to leave her husband, an electrician, an actual, earnest, detailed to-do list?
“He would never follow it,” she said. “He would be like, ‘You want me to find specific pajamas? She'll sleep in a T-shirt.’ I give in to them. He doesn’t.”
Many, many people made time to tell the Oesers that their children are ill-behaved heathens. (Helpful information that every parent likes to hear from strangers.)
“When we’re out in public, we’re like the von Trapps,” Oeser said. “They’re really freaking good. At home? They’re wretched to me.”
Which she readily, hilariously admits.
As for Kevin, he penned a rebuttal to Meghan, which includes a list of things strangers have told him to do in the last few days.
“Take a parenting class. Walk into oncoming traffic. Go back in time and not be born. Beat my kids.”
“So many people said we need to start beating them,” Oeser told me.
Despite the blowback, Oeser is glad she posted the note, and the attention inspired her to start a blog, where she plans to recount her adventures raising kids ages 3, 5, 7, 9, 12 and 15.
The first few installments involve essential oils, back-to-school celebrating and a fair amount of swearing. If you prefer your parenting picture-perfect, I suggest you visit elsewhere.