Established in 2017, Modern Mom Probs is a parenting humor and lifestyle Instagram account developed by Tara Clark. She presents realistic issues facing modern parents in a humorous, heart-warming light. Tara creates content for the parenting powerhouse website Scary Mommy and was featured in (201) Magazine as an Influencer to Watch. Tara is a frequent guest on podcasts discussing modern parenting. These podcasts include Marriage and Martinis, Fun in a Mom Bun, Mother Her, and Breaking Down Parenting – The Parent Normal Podcast. She is the author of the book Modern Mom Probs: A Survival Guide for 21 Century Mothers. 

Interview by Erin Jeffery

Tara Clark is my new best friend.

I mean, we’ve only talked once. Over zoom. While I was being interrupted by phone calls and random pets. But it was great.  

I had the chance to interview Tara as a Featured Mama for Yoyomama while she promotes her new book Modern Mom Probs: A Survival Guide for 21st Century Mothers. She describes this book as the analog version of her highly successful Instagram account @modernmomprobs and website, and the perfect guide for historians (or Back to the Future’s Marty McFly in the Delorean) to look back and see what being a mom in the 21st century is like. 

As someone who does not fit comfortably into the ‘traditional mom’ mold, Tara speaks to me. 

Tara Clark is the very funny and authentic voice of a generation of modern mothers. She is fallible, honest, and is stumbling through motherhood without a game plan and a willingness to change.

She also thinks my hair is awesome – because besties.

She got her start in social media while working at Nickelodeon, where she over saw the social media accounts for Nick Jr. and Nick@Nite. Tara holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Villanova University and an MBA from Metropolitan College of New York in Media Management.

As mothers of a certain age (ie: perimenopausal/Gen X and Millennial), we had the opportunity to discuss what that does to us and how that informs our parenting. From discovering casual racism in some Disney movies, to why the Back to the Future series is excellent, to where our brains have gone (if someone finds them please let us know.), we talked about it all.  

Most interesting to me was our conversation about being mothers of boys. Mothers who have navigated the 80’s and the not so veiled sexism and bigotry. Parenting is, at its very core, an experience filled with quicksand and how we get out of it with everyone intact is a miracle.  The suitcase that young men are given is a lot to unpack. It is filled with privilege, and it is incredibly heavy and toxic. She mentioned the principles of I CARE at her son’s school and how she too is guided by them. Teachings are done through the lenses of Integrity Caring Attitude Respect and Empathy. When Tara hits a conversation that could be too heavy for her son to carry, she is guided by these principles as they navigate things together. 

We also talked about how I almost lit the house on fire because I put our electric kettle on our stove.

Once we were done discussing brain drain, fires and other things, I asked Tara a few questions that we’ve asked all our Featured Mamas. 

Describe your child in a single sentence.

A spirited boy who identifies as a gamer who loves his long shaggy hair. 

How have you changed as a person since becoming a mom?

Tara recognizes she’s changed the longer she’s been a mom. Societal pressure became less important and the transition from Helicopter parent to Elsa occurred as she Let It Go. 

What has been the hardest thing about being a mom?

Coming to terms with the fact that your child is not going to be the person you envisioned them to be and respecting them for that. They’re their own individual and they like what they like. We can provide guidance, but in the end, it’s all them. 

What advice can you give our mama readers?

Give yourself grace because all of those societal pressures don’t matter in the scheme of things. She really wishes she would have put less pressure on herself to be perfect.

Do you have a favourite family recipe?

Speaking of pressure, despite her best efforts, her child is a selective eater who loves grilled chicken and broccoli (which frankly is wizardly plain and simple). While different dinners sometimes occur, a good slow cooker chicken soup is a win for everyone in the house. 

How has your pandemic motherhood journey been? How has it affected how you parent?

Tara and her husband elected to keep their son at home for virtual schooling. He’s been at home with them the entire time and it’s been lovely. They’ve had family time and they know that they can all look back on it and reflect on how lucky they were to be able to spend that time together. It’s been a good experience on the back of a horrible situation.

I could have chatted with Tara for hours.  But I didn’t. Because I didn’t want to cause another house fire.  So, we booked another time!

Join Tara and I on an Instagram live at this Thursday, June 24th at 1:00pm PST. We will talk about her new book, emerging from a pandemic as a parent and, most importantly being my new best friend. 

About Erin Jeffery

Erin is a relapsed actor and stand-up comedian, professional jazz hands for the arts and New Westminster, B.C., lover of cheese, player of Football and she is rarely still.

 She has been lucky enough to perform all around the Lower Mainland in film, television and stage over the past two decades. 

She is the mother of one incredibly active and charming eleven-year-old and the wife of an amazingly patient and talented husband. Erin has been a Yoyomama contributor since her son was born.