From “Freaks and Geeks” to “Cougar Town,” actress Busy Philipps has always brought a healthy dose of humor to her roles. But there’s one role that has taught Philipps just how valuable a sense of humor really is: motherhood. Philipps has two daughters, 8-year-old Birdie and 4-year-old Cricket, and she isn’t shy about how essential laughter is to parenting. “No one would survive if you weren’t able to laugh at it,” Philipps says.
Of the many trials of being a parent, one that this philosophy is most essential to is potty training. According to Philipps, this isn’t just important for mothers, but also for their children. “That particular milestone is something you have to have such a good sense of humor about. I have mom friends who have gotten very uptight and concerned, and when that happens the kid feels it and then there’s no chance for either of you to get through it successfully,” says Philipps.
The actress recently wrapped this milestone with Cricket, and partnered with Pull-Ups Training Pants to talk about how the product was such an essential part of their journey. “Every kid is different and Pull-Ups obviously recognizes that, and they have all different types of products to reflect that. It’s amazing how much progress they’ve made in just the short time since I potty-trained Birdie,” Philipps says.
Potty training isn’t the only part of parenting that requires a sense of humor for Philipps. Raising her children in the public eye has brought its own set of challenges for the actress, and she admits that she is not always able to laugh in these situations.
To have to deal with your kid having a total meltdown in public and then turn and see you’re being photographed is a bad feeling.
“I’ve struggled and we’ve had a couple run-ins with paparazzi during temper tantrums and that’s a bummer," she tells Mom.me. "I’m not a perfect parent, my children aren’t perfect children and I don’t know anyone who is—whether they’re in the public eye or not. To have to deal with your kid having a total meltdown in public and then turn and see you’re being photographed is a bad feeling."
She recalls the first time this happened to her: “I felt so shamed. I felt like there was going to be this record of my kid screaming because I didn’t go back and get her an icy at the carnival,” Philipps says. “I felt the gaze of everyone as I was soothing my screaming, fuming child, and I remember thinking, ‘Oh, they must think she’s so spoiled, they must think I’m such a bad mom’.”
Philipps certainly isn’t alone in this feeling. Trying to quell a public temper tantrum is something that every mom has no doubt had to experience. As a mother, especially to young children, you just never know what’s going to happen when you leave the house. Philipps may be a celebrity, but she is no exception to this.
“I literally one time had to curb my daughter—I had to hold her over the curb while she peed into the street when she was about 2 years old. And of course if I had gotten swarmed by the paparazzi at that moment, I’d have to be like, 'Well! What do you want me to do?’ I mean, your kid has to go, there are no bathrooms, what can you do? You just have to laugh and hold them up and hope they don’t pee on your shoes,” Philipps says.
It’s a good philosophy for all moms—whether you’re struggling with potty training, a public outburst, or just trying to get through the day—just hold your head high, and hope nobody pees on your shoes.