Mommies Who Drink: Sex, Drugs, and Other Distant Memories of an Ordinary Mom

ISBN: 0446578738
ISBN 13: 9780446578738
By: Brett Paesel

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About this book

For young single women, every night is Ladies' Night. For Brett Paesel and her friends, Friday happy hour is all they get--if they can wrangle a babysitter. Like most mommies, they support each other through pregnancies, sleep deprivation, and the need to talk about it all. Instead of meeting at the playground, they convene at the local watering hole while sipping Black and Tans and flirting with the cute bartender. With a poignant voice and a fresh style that makes this memoir read like the best women's fiction, Paesel navigates mommyhood in all its forms--the ecstatic, the terrifying, the tedious, the hilarious, the transcendental, and the sticky. Paesel's laugh-out-loud perspective will appeal to all women who are braving the new world of motherhood, where the secret question on their minds at playgroup is "When is it too early in the day to start drinking?"

Reader's Thoughts


Author is a bit self indulgent, and I found myself more annoyed with her angst than feeling empathy for her. NOT the laugh out loud book it was advertized to be, but entertaining if you are on an 8 hour flight to Germany.


Loved this book!! So much fun! I wish I could have a happy hour with Brett!! All you mommies out there should get - and even if you're not a mommy - you'd enjoy it too!!

Cassandra McCall

I know, surprise, surprise - I would read a book entitled Mommies Who Drink. I got this from my soon-to-be sister-in-law, and I liked it very much. Even though I am still breastfeeding and can't actually drink (to drunkenness), it was good. At times a bit boring - but it did have the following line in it which I find worth the entire book "An overeater herself, she encourages complicity." And for some reason, the chapter about mothers dying just totally got me, and I started crying. Hello hormones.

Cmayorga Mayorga

Okay so the title might scare some mothers away, but not me! I actually purchased this as a book on cd for a Houston to Dallas trip. Brett Paesel had me cracking up on the road at times. Even though the title and even the first two chapters seemed a bit over the top, it really was a pretty good book (for moms who drink...not drunks!!) If you are not a parent it probably will not be as funny. If you are a perfect parent you probably will not like this book. Note: If you do get the book on cd please do not listen to it with kids in the car as she swears quite a bit in this book.


I picked this up off my friend Michele's bookshelf - hmmmm, what are you trying to tell me, Michele? Compelling concept and perfect reading for the weekend my husband and little one travel to the grandparents...


SOOO laugh outloud funny !!! You have to be ok with some "bad" language (cursing).Brett is a very funny lady. Wish she'd write another book...perhaps about raising the boys as the are growing.


Liked most of the book, but I didn't love Brett as a person. Her friends seem to be characters, not real, and all a little too perfectly pigeonholed. Brett made most of her own issues. . .and made too much of them at times.The best part of the book was the chapter where one character's mom dies. .. well written, very poignant, and hit home.


Anyone who can take the horror and fear and confusion about parenthood and make it funny and real gets an automatic five stars. Paesel improved upon even that by including the crazy near-imaginary world of LA and Hollywood. Her book makes me long for girlfriends to meet up with regularly, to drink and talk and forget for a little while that I am an increasingly older woman with a child, no longer cutesy or adorable. Funny and heartful, I wish I had found this sooner. The biggest question for me after my child was born was "Who am I?" and Paesel relates to the question in ways that don't make me feel foolish or uninspired.


I was so disappointed to read this book. With such a catchy title and some great ideas, it just didn't play out well. Very disjointed and poorly written.


Hilarious and real,The cover, which has design references to the classic children's book, Goodnight Moon is very delightful. This is not a memoir about tragic drunken parenting, it's more of a realistic adaptation of the fear of losing your personal identity after motherhood. Being a parent, however, is not essential, for everyone will appreciate how funny, so very funny, Mommies Who Drink is.


I found this memoir truly entertaining. Paesel’s raw honesty in regard to a very sensitive subject is refreshing. Not all mothers will “get” Paesel. Those mothers who are boxed in by social and familial constraints will find it difficult to allow themselves to admit that sometimes their children make them feel something other than bliss. The author cares little about what is socially acceptable to admit. Though you may not be able to identify with the specifics of Paesel’s situations or parental plight you would certainly be able to identify with the emotions and thoughts behind them.


Recommended by my firend Wendy, I was in tears (from laughter) by page 2. It is a great book start to finish. The author's life and mine are very diferent but I could imagine that to which I could not relate.


I once told a friend, "I don't get an orgasm from cleaning my house." In fact, much of domestic life bores the !X&$@ out of me. Once a year, I get my Martha on, and do insanely involved Christmas crafts, and that is pretty much good enough to carry me another 12 months. And so it is not unlikely that I would pick up Mommies Who Drink, described as a polemic against modern mothering. The book is at times wry, touching, and spot-on (i.e., the fact that some of us are more apt to go to school meetings where wine is served). There's a little Beth Lisick, a little David Sedaris, and just a touch of Erma Bombeck. It's very LA-centric, which makes it a pleasing romp through auditions, voiceovers, etc. Some of the book reads like a sit-com, and while the writing is good, that can get stale. But just when it seems that it might veer toward the vapid (most of the dialogue takes place at Friday happy hour, and it seems very episodic, with half the chapters titled "Friday"), Paesel gets serious, and intimate, in a way that rescues the work immediately. I wish some of Paesel's tales were my own (one mom gains social capital at her son's preschool when he reports he saw "mommy sitting on daddy's head" that morning, which is a great way to start the day). I know some of her insecurities are. The book might have been funnier 5-10 years ago when I was trying desperately hard to take all this mothering stuff VERY seriously, and finding my own soul withering in the process. Now, somewhat removed, it's less side-splitting, but still relevant. It's a chance to look at what's important; taking myself seriously and holding myself to a near-impossible standard, or eating ice cream in front of the television and not feeling bad about it? Paesel would vote the latter makes, on occasion, for the far better parent.


A good read, but not quite what I had expected. There were some laugh out loud moments as I read some great insights into parenting and other people's parenting styles. Overall, entertaining.


One of those that makes you wonder who she slept with to get this book published. The only reason I gave it two stars were for the couple of times I laughed out loud. Other than that she is an over privileged actress who is trying to sell books by her name.

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