The clothes puller

Yesterday afternoon I was at swimming. It was 4.30pm on a Monday afternoon. Harper was bored and tired. It was humid and hot in there. And it was swimming, did I mention SWIMMING? So it was extra annoying. Needless to say, my patience was a little, shall we say, thin. Wafer thin. Wafer thin wafer.

I tried to sit, but Harper sat on me. I stood and she pulled on me. Leaned on me. I snapped. In public. Nothing too dramatic, just your standard “Can you please let go of me and STOP PULLING ON MY CLOTHES!” Quite loudly. And I didn’t care less who heard me. And then I did what normal people do, I took a photo of her pulling on my clothes, uploaded it onto Instagram and asked everyone else if it drives them crazy or if I’m the only one. The next 12 minutes were spent chuckling into my phone and before I knew it, the lesson was done. Win!

It seems I’m not alone. It seems I’m not the only one who has uttered the words “Can you just STOP TOUCHING ME?” Oh yes, I’ve said that to MY OWN CHILDREN. Patting drives others crazy. Others have trouble with being shown stuff RIGHT IN YOUR FACE LIKE RIGHT THERE. There’s the climbing under dresses, up shirts, tapping. You name it – someone else has been really annoyed by the puzact same thing with their own kid. Promise!

When we were flying back from NY Mrs Woog almost completely lost her shit over a woman across the aisle from us who had a pen, you know the ones with the retractable press bit at the end? Those. After she had filled in her customs card she pressed that pen in. And out. And in. Andoutandinandoutandinandout. And Mrs Woog just about couldn’t take it. And I just about loved watching the tension between the woman. The pen. And Mrs Woog’s patience – great drama!

So. What drives you (as I made the voice over lady say on Media Watch last week) cray cray CRAZY? It doesn’t have to be about children, but dear GOD they give you plenty to work with.

I cannot stand the clothes pulling.
I cannot stand the coughing.
I cannot stand loud breathing and don’t get me started on a nose whistle/breathe scenario.
I cannot stand my husband’s love of small change. That he leaves fucking EVERYWHERE.
I cannot stand baskets of clean washing left unfolded.
I have trouble dealing with toilet rolls on so that the paper comes under. It’s over.

I could go on, but someone would just tell me that I’m ungrateful. So I’ll leave it at that. Tell me. Go on. It’s like therapy.


  1. Loud chewing! The constant muuuuuum.

  2. Noisy chewing and people who slurp ( drinks or food), drives me bONKERS!

  3. Kids, adults , it matters not… Chew with your mouth closed and be prepared for the ‘evil eye’ if you slurp!

  4. I have to admit, that I am with mrs woog on this one! The pen thing drives me nuts, but the winner is people chewing with their mouth open! I struggle to go to the movies now, because I always get the chip eater behind me!

  5. you need a change container, then you take it all to the bank and they tell you it’s $372 and you buy yourself a gift.

    I don’t like mess squalor filth laziness disloyalty back stabbing or bush turkeys

    Leaving a wet sponge in the sink without squeezing it out to dry is pretty horrible too

  6. “Stop pulling my clothes!, Stop jumping on the couch!, watch my coffee! watch my coffee! hot coffee here! (Ditto with the wine when I’m not pregnant), stop sniffing! Get a tissue! Oh don’t wipe it on your arm!!!”. I’m a bit of a cranky pants at the moment. The small change I could live with Beth and you would have a field day with my baskets of clean unfolded washing πŸ™‚ Mel x

  7. My sister has a major thing about toilet rolls going over not under. She will turn the roll around in other people’s bathrooms and public toilets if the paper is under and is even planning to write a blog devoted to the subject! I told her no-one would be interested but I think she needs it for therapy to work through her issues.
    I am with you on the touching/leaning/climbing by my kids – I like my own space too much.
    Nose picking is my pet hate. I teach kindergarten and I spend a good part of my day reminding the kids not to do it. Makes my skin crawl.

  8. SNIFFING!!!!!

  9. I am with you all the way on the clothes pulling and touching thing. I particularly hate bony little elbows in your ribs/stomach/general body area when they’re sat next to you and want to get up. Hilarious post. x

  10. I cannot stand extra and unnecessary body noises like sniffing, chewing, heavy breathing and loud sneezes. I cannot stand rude people and children and adults that don’t say please and thank you


  12. See, I am toilet roll under, not over. Over just looks strange to me. Gives me the heebie jeebies.

    My husband not using the google search box on firefox annoys the crap out of me. He always has to go to the advance search tab in bookmarks. GAH!!! And the fact he won’t wash the dishes. There could be PILES YOU CAN’T JUMP OVER in the kitchen, but no. He waits for me to do it. He’ll dry up but somehow his brain isn’t wired to WASH. Killing me slowly….

    K xx

  13. I hate it when people, especially my own kids keep sniffing when they clearly need to blow their nose. My husband leaves the wet sponge in the sink every time but I bite my tongue because he’s done the dishes. The clothes pulling irritates me, as well as the lifting up of my dress when I’m wearing one. At the moment my kids are constantly saying Watch this mum! Watch this! Watch this! I’ve lost it a few times over that. Ditto the the small change, plus my husband leaves little bits of paper around everywhere that are notes he’s written. I keep telling him that’s what his iPhone is for! Or invest in a tiny notepad to put in your pocket so it all stays together!

  14. Totally with you on the toilet paper. Apparently studies have shown that you use less when it goes over. An environmentally friendly point rests my case! My fiancΓ© not puting my car keys back in my bag dyer he uses them. I need to know they are in my handbag. The wardrobe doors must be shut when u get into bed or I get the heebie jeebies

  15. Things that annoy me Part I: The fact my kids eat SO much, just don’t STOP eating.ever. When I was pregnant no one warned me that the birth of your baby marks the start of a lifelong catering assignment. Neighbours parking in our shared ACCESS driveway is currently driving me nuts. I’m close to becoming of the crazy neighbours you see on media shows – I honestly see how that happens now. Sniffing. “I’m hungry”. The car being left in reverse, so I drive into the house – yes – happened.

  16. My husband is a loud eater and never closes his mouth. I didnt notice it at first but my dad pointed it out one day. Now I notice it ALL THE TIME. We have spoken about it but its a habit he just cant seem to change. Lucky I love him but it still drives me NUTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I have twins so the clothes pulling thing is always happening x 2. I cant wear long skirts anymore otherwise that could be dangerous.

  17. My almost 3 yr old is obsessed with my boobs, he was weaned at 2 years 4 months and I assumed he would get over it but NO he actually talks to them and whenever he comes near me he has to have a squeeze, like takes one between both hands and squeezes. YUP! Drives me BONKERS! Not to mention the digging for them at 6am every morning when he crawls into my bed… those little hard fists digging, me slapping his hand away like a pesky little fly, he usually responds with a fist to the face. Nice way to be woken up. I AM NOT A MORNING PERSON!
    Also hubby complains about the mess the boys make, says they have no respect for the house/space but will just then step over toys, pencils, clothes, lego etc that is strewn around… Gah!

    • Me too!!
      I weaned my 2nd at 2 yo and still @ 4 he is obsessed!
      His hand and my boobs are like magnets.He will only fall asleep holding one and I am slapping his hand away all night ( stupid me co-sleeps).

      When will it end,sweet lord?

    • Omg Nicky this made me laugh…my 3yr girl is the same. But she eventually got over the boob squeezing / touching.. Does do it occasionally as she still has the love for them. She was also breastfed past 2 yrs. She now loves to smell under my arms!! drives me crazy! had to switch to organic deodorant. First it was the boob touching, now it’s the underarm touching and smelling. She tells me I smell like flowers. Even when I wear no deodorant.

  18. I’m with you on the piles of small change and the toilet paper going over Beth- drives me bonkers!!!!
    We have a change jar and if my other half leaves his pile sin the wrong place the piles go in the jar- then its my change too πŸ˜‰

  19. Rocco keeps walking up to me saying, MUM. And won’t continue until I say, “Yes?”

    Drives me the Mediawatch cray cray crazy. So I said to him, mate, don’t keep saying mum. Just ask me.

    Now ….. he comes up to me and says,


    And won’t continue, until I say yes.

    And that’s when I carved my brain out with a spoon.

  20. no kiddies for us, but boy, there are definitely things that drive me bonkers! I love, love, love my husband but when he whistles, I want to scream and throw a tantrum, it drives me mad! Toilet paper under is the stupidest idea ever, and when people say “yous”, I have to exercise all my self control not to bluntly alert them to the fact that you is already a plural, yous DOES NOT EXIST!! rant, over.
    πŸ˜‰ xx

  21. Not hanging towels up.
    Putting beer bottles on the bench RIGHT ABOVE THE RECYCLING BIN!!!
    Check out people who can’t pack groceries correctly ( sausages & toothpaste cannot go in the same bag!)
    Noises my kids make just to be annoying, to me & each other .
    When my dog sits next to me then proceeds to lick or scratch himself.

  22. clicking

  23. Clare I also teach prep and once heard a teacher say “Boogers are not food!” cracked me up πŸ˜›

  24. We discussed yesterday how I can not abide by the pulling on clothes OR the patting OR the rubbing. Dear GOD the rubbing.

    But at the moment, the worst? The “thing” that makes me batshit crazy? Chef.Eating.Crunchy.Foods. It’s not that he eats with his mouth open (he doesn’t) it’s that his head must be some sort of cavernous echo chamber. I swear to GOD the volume of him eating a chip or a bowl of nutrigrain is almost grounds for divorce. I know you know I’m not joking.

  25. People scratching their leg through their jeans with jagged nails! JUST CUT YOUR FRICKING NAILS SO THEY DON’T GET CAUGHT ON EVERY FIBRE AND MAKE THAT TERRIBLE SOUND!!
    Sorry bout that :/

  26. Sniffers make me homicidal. I worked in universities for ten years and I remember getting cultural diversity training about how people from some cultures sniff because blowing one’s nose in front of others is considered bad manners. Drives me mad. Especially when people sit next to me on public transport and do it. Use a fecking hanky! Only thing close is people who spit phlegm. Sorry i mean MEN who spit phlegm. Never seen a woman do it. People who stand at the traffic lights and don’t push the walk button -they annoy me too. Feckers

  27. Hi there, just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. I have recently found it and am now following you. Hopefully you will follow me also. Hugs, Chris

  28. When the kids say “mum”, I reply “I hate that word”. Then they crack up hysterically and say it even more”…..I also hate my space being invaded…..

  29. I cannot stand when they tell me they need a dragon head mask for first lesson as we eat breakfast at eight o’clock.
    Children not hanging towels up. Husband putting once used towels in the washing for ME to wash.
    Empty toilet roll or roll with two sheets left on it. CHANGE it! Same goes for empty milk cartons and water bottles in the fridge. THROW OUT AND FILL UP!!!
    Boys standing in front of the fridge with it open gazing at a blank spot in the back of it.
    Husbands taking in laundry and scrunching it all tightly into the basket so it needs mega ironing or sometimes to be rewashed.
    I must stop now or I will take up all your comment space…

  30. I get the holding of the knees while I am trying to cook dinner…drives me moderately crazy but can usually be resolved by giving Toddler C a wooden spoon and a pot.

    And I love loose change…I pick it up and then it is mine…I take it to the cafe and get myself a “free” coffee!

    The thing that gets me is taking out the rubbish but not replacing the bag!
    Instant bad mood…it gets me every time!
    And I can’t complain because at least Daddy R notices the bin is full and takes the rubbish out.
    But for the LOVE OF GOD he had better start replacing the bag otherwise I am going to put said bag over his head!

  31. Children , mine of course, stepping on my feet. Esp when I’ve just painted my toes.

  32. I’m quite sort and people like to lean on me!!!!

    • Oh, I get this as well! It drives me bonkers! And they laugh while they’re doing it like it’s a big joke πŸ™

  33. I work in a prep class and kids coming up and poking my arm, leg, belly or for the taller ones my boobs to get my attention, does my head in. I have been so close to seriously losing it with them so many times. I HATE POKERS!
    Sue N

  34. All time hands down winner for me would be the jumping up and down while you’re trying to help them put their ever loving socks and shoes on and then wham…top of head meets your chin and you bite your tongue and man are they lucky to survive that one…

  35. I don’t have children, I have an office full of men who cannot wash a teaspoon for the love of god.

    Sniffers, don’t even get me started. In one uni exam I called the supervisor over to get her to give my tissues to the guy behind me who was driving me insane with his sniffing.

    Finally, how, how for the love of god, can I get my partner to put the toilet lid down?

  36. What’s just made me crazy is the fact that while reading your post I’ve tried to secretly eat a Flake so that my 4 year old doesn’t see me and all I have managed to do is litter my lap with bloody flake bits everywhere. Stupid chocolate bar…

  37. My son always wants to touch my face in the brief 2 seconds between going to the toilet and washing his hands – makes me mental!

  38. My kids breathing on my face/yelling in my ear/or trying to do anything when I do up their car seats.

  39. These Comments make me laugh.

    I am glad that I am not the only one who finds wet sponges left in sinks Revolting.

    • FF, my husband did this tonight… before I even read this post! (spooky). And worse, he even left scraps of food on the wet sponge which he had wiped off the bench. DIS-GUST-ING! I told him he needs to rinse the sponge out, wring it and leave it to dry in the dish rack. I felt mean telling him what to do after he did the dishes, but surely its JUST COMMON SENSE???!!!

  40. Getting the kids ready for school has had my blood boiling on occasion. Now I don’t give a flying fart if they get there on time things have improves somewhat……
    T xx

  41. Licking. My children seem to like licking me at the moment. Arms, legs, face, chest.

  42. Mum, mum, mum!
    Definitely a toilet roll on the outside person…have been known to change it in other people’s houses.
    When I was teaching…children who pat me to gain attention..I tell them I’m not a dog and threaten to bark next time..and I do!
    Clothes not hung the correct way on the line and in the wrong section…sometimes I can control myself not to say anything but I usually have to fix them when the offender is not looking…usually my husband.
    Hate sniffers and spitters..yuk!
    Annie M

  43. ZOMG. clothes pulling. KILL ME NOW.

    loathe. with. a. passion.

    I also hate to varying degrees….

    chewing/blowing/talking in my ear by anyone at any time
    unpacking the dishwasher BUT NOT REPACKING IT
    arms/legs/other body parts on me in bed other than in the designated sexy times
    knocking my computer table, hanging off my computer table… as my youngest is doing right now
    people who mumble

    I’m sure there are more….

  44. Love this post and your instagram photo yesterday – totally resonates with me:
    – The farking coins!!!!! Kills me
    – Leaving cupboard doors open
    – A light toucher – makes my skin crawl
    – Knuckle cracking will make me lose my shit

  45. Humming…….I am an anti-hummer…….it freaking near does my head in

  46. Throat clearers. My husband is one. That’s a tough one huh?
    And yes I hate the toilet roll on the wrong way, AND the lazy people who don’t change it when it’s finished.
    I hate it when no one puts their clothes the right way before they go in the wash and I have to stand there unfolding 6 people’s clothes!!
    I hate it when as soon as I go upstairs, or pick up the phone the girls suddenly need me…
    Okay that’s done. Feel better now.

  47. The people who sniffle and the sound they make when they suck the snot down the back of their throat. gag

    Oh and my 4.5 year olds random questions in traffic. Today’s pearler “mum why is a duck a duck”. Does my head in I tell you!!

  48. Can’t stand reading over my shoulder, or leaning on me invading space when I am really tired/cranky/sleep deprived/hormonal so you know majority of the time

  49. Oh Beth, I am totally with you on the toilet roll paper on top (and in fact was thinking about this today and wondering if anybody else insisted on the toilet paper being on the top… it appears they do!), and the nose whistling… DEAR GOD, the nose whistling. My husband is the WORST for this. Drives me bonkers. And loud eating. Gross!!!! I have to leave the room if there is a loud eater. I can’t stand it. Seriously. I just walk away because I know I will crack it. Haven’t had much experience with the clothes pulling yet with my 21 month old, but I’m sure its coming. Another thing I can’t stand – people who watch the tv really loudly at night time. I’m constantly in a tug of war with my husband over the volume of the tv. He always has it up way too loud. People who talk loudly on the bus either to their friend or on the phone. Seriously, you know we can all hear you right??? Uggh. I could go on but don’t want to bore you! C xo

  50. My husband whistling. And snoring. And farting. And leaving his stuff everywhere.
    My 15 year old son cracking every bone in his body when he stretches. And never opening a window in his room so it STINKS in there. And having to ask him EVERY GODDAMN DAY to do his chores when he has had the same chores for 7 years now. And telling him not to take food/dishes into his bedroom but finding a pile of dishes/wrappers in there whenever I dare to venture past the (always closed) door.
    My 6 year old daughter YELLING rather than talking. And her needing me to watch every damn thing she does. And her inability to ever stop talking. And her leaving a trail of destruction from one end of the house to the other.
    My Dad having his TV up so damn loud that I can hear it inside the main house (he lives in a granny flat in the back yard). And his refusal to believe I ever do anything constructive on the computer. And his OH SO F*CKING SLOW driving these days.
    The guinea pigs shitting in their water bowl.

    Cranky McCrankerson they call me…

  51. I’m so glad I’m not the only one with the “toilet roll thing” – I often change it so it is “over” wherever I go!!

  52. Squealing, shrieking and whining set my teeth on edge. And OMFG how do they always lose 1 shoe?? And always on the days we were running early until the shoe hunt/frustration fest began and then we end up late.

  53. Not pushing chairs back in after we’ve left the table. Open-mouthed chewing. Not replacing the toilet paper EVER and leaving the empty roll on the holder or just anywhere in the bathroom really but not the bin – oh no! Hearing my name repeated 5 million times a day. “mummy, MUMMY?” or “baby? BABY?!”

  54. Empty ice trays back in the freezer, people who clip their nails on the train/ office desk! Eeew

  55. This is off topic, but I have been meaning to ask for a while – can you do a tea towels post. I can’t bear them. How DO you get rid of that manky smell? Yuck. Oh, and my small girl’s whine-y voice kills me. I am constantly saying, “find a different way to say it!”

  56. OMG the clothes pulling drives me nuts. Just yesterday chatting to my neighbours in their back yard with a wine in my hand my daughter wants my attention. She tuggs and tuggs and my skirt comes right down to my ankles. My gracious neighbours pretended not to notice. You should have seen the look I shot at her….grrrrr!

  57. The toilet roll down – definitely.
    The clothes pulling – absolutely.

    But the one that will one day be the end of me is the wet sponge.

    I think it’s an English thing. My husband is a huge culprit. And since I had my inlaws staying with us for 6 weeks and discovered that they too participate actively in “soggy sponge”, I have my suspicions. Perhaps it is hereditary? Is there any hope for my own children? I pray that some part of my DNA (control freakish as it might be) has enough effect that their homes will be devoid of cold, soggy, dirty sponges.

    A few other things that absolutely drive me batty:
    * Wet towels dropped on MY side of the bed (almost grounds for divorce I reckon)
    * For the love of all things dental, please put the lid down on the top of the toothpaste once you’re done. It’s already attached – it shouldn’t be too much of a strain to go that little bit extra. The dry, manky bits of toothpaste that form around the top are gross.
    * Beer bottle tops. Please don’t leave them strategically all over the house where I will (inevitably) step on them. Sharp side up naturally. Find the bin. Put them in it.

    And last but not least – (and this one is truly disgusting – introduced to me by my FIL) – when brushing your teeth, do the next person using the sink a favour and rinse your spit-out. I promise you that they don’t need to see the remnants of your breakfast/toothpaste on the side of the sink.

    There. I’m done.

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