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4 Ominous Signs of the Mom-Jeans-Wearing Spouse

Mom Jeans

A friend just shared a blog post with me that called out my favorite jeans as being ... da-da-da-duh ... Mom Jeans.

I immediately ran to my full-length mirror, turned around (because it's the rear view that makes them Mom Jeans, ya know) and launched my protest.

"No! These aren't even high-waisted! They're dark rinse! They're bootcut! They have wide pockets on the butt!"

In other words, they're exactly the same style of jeans I've been wearing --  daily -- for over a decade. This, my friends, is exactly how you wake up one day to find that you're wearing Mom Jeans.

You see, those high-waisted Mom Jeans from my teens and twenties are suddenly back on trend in a tongue-in-cheek way.

My teenage nieces buy jeans like those. They smirk when I say things like, "A waist that high will make my butt look droopy!"

Perhaps I'll patent a bumper sticker that reads: "Frump Happens." Because at some point between being voted "Most Fashionable" in junior high and finally giving away my last nursing bra last year, frump seems to have happened to me.

I think for most of us it starts with the maternity clothes. Only a Kardashian can justify spending a ton of money on clothes that will get worn for only a few months. The rest of us begin to get comfortable with the idea that there will just be periods of our lives when no one expects us to be stylish.

Then comes post-pregnancy, when we're excited to wear real clothes again but quickly learn that the only clothes in our closets that fit belong to our husbands.

So we purchase a transitional wardrobe, a collection of items that will (fingers crossed!) shrink with us. I'm looking at you, Yoga Pants. You too, Tunics and Leggings.

We learn that, indeed, spandex can be worn outside of the gym, and that it is insanely comfortable.

Then, exhausted from all the new life demands and more interested in staying up-to-date on showering than on trends, we lose track of what's happening. We find ourselves reading magazines with articles about sleep schedules, not articles about fashion.  

We discover a tremendous, never before experienced, need for dark colored, patterned tops that open wide enough in the front to accommodate a baby's head --  and buying those is about as far as our fashion planning goes.

We keep the shopping trips as short as possible by buying the jeans we remember Stacy and Clinton once saying were the most universally flattering (dark rinse, wide leg, big flat pockets on the rear),  but we forget that Stacy and Clinton said that during the Bush Administration.

So, my Must-Have parents, if you're not sure if your style needs updating, I can help. Do you have any of the 4 Signs of the Mom Jeans Wearing Spouse?

  1. You are brand loyal. Remember the final episode of "Friends?" Were you wearing the same style of jeans when you watched it that you're wearing now? And if, by chance, you were wearing that exact pair of jeans when you watched it, you're not in Mom Jeans territory, Friend. You're in homeless territory.
  2. 'These kids today' scoffage. Do you look at people in their teens and twenties and think their clothes look stupid? Yep. They're thinking the same thing about you.
  3. You wore that style already. When you see clothes in store windows at the mall, do you think, "Ugh. That was ugly back in '92 when that blond chick in Roxette wore it." If you answered yes, you should know that 2003 just called. It wants the poncho back. If your first thought was, 'I haven't been to a mall in years!' then you really don't need this questionnaire. You need new clothes, stat!

But does any of this even matter? I mean, who has the time, energy or desire to worry about trends and fashion now with all the bigger, more important, more urgent things we all have to deal with each day?

Ha! Tricked you!

4. You think there is something more important than Mom Jeans. If you found yourself nodding the most with that last question, there's about a 100 percent chance you're currently wearing Mom Jeans. Apathy to fashion is pretty much a dead giveaway. It's OK. It happens to the best of us. Acknowledgment is the first step.

  • Now, friends, it's time to take back our closets. This will be easy if you have teenaged daughters. Ask them. They're probably dying to tell you. If you don't, just ask the baby sitter to get to your house a half hour early next time --  so she can tell you what to wear.

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Rebekah Sanderlin Family and Spouse

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Rebekah Sanderlin is an Army wife, a mother of three and a professional writer. Her work has been published numerous places, including The Washington Post, The New York Times, National Public Radio, CNN, and in Self and Maxim magazines. She currently serves on the advisory boards of the Military Family Advisory Network and Blue Star Families.

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