23 Spot-On Parenting Quotes From Kristen Bell

Happy birthday to this "Bad Moms" star!
Happy birthday, Kristen Bell!
NBC via Getty Images
Happy birthday, Kristen Bell!

Kristen Bell has a lot of thoughts about parenting.

The actress and her husband, Dax Shepard, have two daughters ― Lincoln and Delta. Since becoming a mom, Bell has made headlines for her funny, insightful and too-real quotes about raising kids.

In honor of her birthday, here are some of Kristen Bell’s standout pieces of parenting wisdom.

On dealing with mom shamers:

“I really, really try hard to live by the Eleanor Roosevelt quote that ‘no one can make you feel inferior without your consent’ ... If you’re confident with what you’re doing even if that’s some weird, bizarre parenting technique that you know works for your kid or you feel happy about, do it! Don’t let anyone tell you you shouldn’t be doing that.

On postpartum body image:

“I didn’t lose my baby weight for over a year. And when I look down, even now, at the extra skin on my belly, it’s a reminder that I’ve done something spectacular. It’s a reminder that I’m a superhero. And I’m proud of it.”

On the pressure on moms to be perfect:

“In the age of social media, when you can edit your life in beautiful pictures, it’s important to remind moms that all of us are wearing yogurt and all of our hands smell like urine.”

On breastfeeding in public:

“It’s boobs. It’s another part of your body that has skin. Boobs don’t provide the shock and awe to me that they do for some people. It’s comical that people are against feeding in public. Like, ‘Are you against feeding children?’ It’s not even an issue, or the fact that it is an issue is comical to me. If you’re aroused by that, I think it’s safe to say that’s your problem and not mine. If it makes you uncomfortable, it’s your responsibility to move away, not mine to cover up. I don’t care where I’m breastfeeding. It never crossed my mind. What crossed my mind is ‘Was my child hungry?’”

On the messy chaos of parenting:

“Every day is something comical. Every day when you’re raising kids, you feel like you could cry or crack up and just scream ‘This is ridiculous!’ because there’s so much nonsense, whether it’s what they’re saying to you or the fact that there’s avocado or poop on every surface. When you present an unrealistic idea of perfection to people, it’s not fair.”

On talking to kids about race:

“Kids will notice differences. So we talk to them about it ― like, our best friend is Indian, and we’re always like, ‘Look at this, isn’t this cool? The difference between Monica’s skin and Mommy’s skin? And they’re different colors. Did you know everybody is a different color?’ You talk to them about it, so the idea of ‘the other’ is never left alone in their brain. Differences are also important, cultures are important, and it’s important to acknowledge those because if you ignore them, your kids are seeing them, [and] they’re coming to their own conclusions. The topic needs to be open.”

On having a C-section:

“It was kind of a wonderful experience for me. While they were doing it, I actually thought, ‘What else could we get done down there? Maybe lengthen the shins? I’ve always wanted to be like 5-foot-7.’ Just anything to keep the epidural flowing. These modern hospitals, man! They treat you right.”

On her morning routine:

My current alarm clock is the blood-curdling screams that I wake up to. I bolt down the hallway thinking that someone’s fallen out of their crib or broken their arm or, I don’t know, drowning in the sink, and then they’re just like ‘Good morning, Mommy!’”

On being a working mom

“I don’t let myself feel guilty about not committing to things anymore. How I position it in my head is that I have more of an obligation to my daughters than I do to anybody else.”

On discipline:

“One thing I’ve learned as a mom is it’s really important to monitor when they are able to receive your information. We wait until they calm down and then we talk to them.”

On the joys of parenthood:

“When Lincoln came out, at first I was like, ‘Eh, what do I do with it? I can take it home?’ But when I started breastfeeding, the oxytocin or my hormones or hundreds of thousands of years of evolution kicked in. I didn’t want to let her go. Having kids feels like that first seventh-grade crush that overwhelms every molecule in your body, but it’s permanent. ... Other than the sleep deprivation in the beginning and trying to figure out how not to screw your kid up, the rewards are mountains larger than the battles.”

On how children change your perspective:

“What I love the most is how much kids right-size your problems. You don’t really care as much. They just make everything better. So all the things you used to worry about just sort of disintegrate.”

On her first Christmas with a baby:

I’m going to wrap up a bunch of stuff from the house because she’s still kind of an idiot. I’m going to wrap up like tissue boxes, and she’ll be thrilled. That’s why I’m not really going to buy anything. But I bought us all matching pajamas!”

On co-parenting:

“My husband and I tap out and take mini meditative breaks because we have two toddlers — they’re so f**king loud — and we keep an eye on each other. We’ll go ‘Oh, OK, you can take a break; I’ll take over.’ When you’re in the ring, you gotta tap out with your partner. That’s how we do it.”

On setting boundaries:

“Recently I’ve had an epiphany that if I’m as nice to my daughter as I want to be, she’s not going to respect me. Giving your kids strong boundaries is good for them, because if you just let them do whatever they want, you raise a jerk.”

On her advice for struggling parents:

“Be patient with yourself. Put on your gas mask first, because you’re useless to everyone else if you’re too stressed out. Know when to take a break.”

On telling her kids “It’s OK”:

“I stopped saying, ‘It’s OK,’ to anything in their lives. My older daughter gets embarrassed a lot, and I don’t say, ‘It’s OK. It’s OK.’ I simply sit next to her and I say, ‘Do you feel embarrassed?’ And she’ll say, ‘Yes.’ And I say, ‘I feel embarrassed, too, sometimes. Sometimes I trip and I feel embarrassed or I break a bowl and I feel embarrassed. I used to feel embarrassed a lot more as a kid, but as you become an adult, some of that stuff goes away.’ So, I allow them to have their feelings ― because I think saying, ‘It’s OK,’ all the time doesn’t do anyone any favors. It just makes them subconsciously think that they’re not supposed to be having those feelings.”

On her least favorite part of parenthood:

“Super-early mornings. I’ll gladly take puke on my shirt or any amount of intestinal issues over those early wake-up calls.”

On the loneliness of motherhood:

Being a mom can be so isolating, and hanging out with other moms is very, very healthy.”

On raising respectful children:

We have very strict rules in our family about how we treat people with respect, especially our family members. … We are going to be with each other in the long haul, so it’s important to always be respectful and treat your sister the way you want to be treated.”

On taking advice from fellow parents:

“I am a parent that actually loves to hear advice from other mothers. I don’t care if your filter is judgmental or altruistic — I still want to hear it because it may be valuable to me.”

On how becoming a mom changed how she sees her own mother:

“I never understood my mom until I had kids. When she would look at me like I was the first drop of water she’d seen at the end of a desert trip and go, ‘You will never understand how much I love you,’ I would go, ‘God, get away! Enough!’ Even in my 20s, I just thought, ‘You’re so dramatic and overly sentimental.’ Now I look at my kids that way and think, ‘Wow, this is a cycle.’ Lincoln won’t understand it until she decides to have kids … that’s just the way it’s supposed to be.”

On stopping at two kids:

“I loved being pregnant — but I don’t want to be outnumbered!

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