15 Hilarious And Earnest Quotes About Parenthood From Wanda Sykes


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Wanda Sykes knows the highs and lows of raising kids. 

The actress and comedian has a twin boy and girl, Lucas Claude and Olivia Lou, with her wife, Alex. Since becoming a mother in 2009, Sykes has opened up about her parenting experiences in her stand-up comedy, on talk shows and in print interviews. 

In honor of her March 7 birthday, here are 15 parenting quotes from Sykes. 

On Her Advice For New Parents

“Well, don’t be alarmed, but sleep is the most important thing ever. Yeah, no one sleeps for at least the first year with a newborn. And it does get better. They eventually do fall asleep. But to me that was the biggest shock and also the hardest thing to get through was just how tired I was, just the lack of sleep. I guess when you have one kid, between the two of you, you can kind of handle it, but with twins it pretty much had both of us up all the time. I don’t know how single parents do it, I really don’t.”

On Becoming A Parent


“My friends make me feel dumb now. They’re talking about Syria and Egypt, and I’m just, like, ‘Oscar was out of control on “Sesame Street.” He was extra-grouchy today.’” 

On The Challenge Of Having Twins

“I was like oh my God what did we do? At one time I was contemplating taking one back. I was like, can we return one? I mean really, oh my gosh. I was thinking we can’t do this, we’re going to have to take one back.”

On The ‘Crap’ Kids Give As Gifts

“They’re 7, so to me, I’d just rather have a hug and a ‘Happy Mother’s Day!’ But when they’re that age ― and moms know ― you have to be a good actress. That’s when you gotta turn into Meryl Streep. Seriously, because they give you gifts that are just ... [sighs] ... So I just had to go ‘Oh that’s amazing! Oh that’s so beautiful!’ And they were so proud. But now I understand why athletes buy their moms a house when they make it ― because they really should to make up for this crap!

On Parenting Mistakes

“Parenting really is a job. It’s on-the-job training ... You cannot give your kids options, choices. I learned that the hard way, big mistake. I’m on the phone with my mother, really sweet woman. And my daughter walks by, and I say, ‘Olivia, you wanna talk to Grandma?’ And she goes, ‘No thank you.’”

On Rolling With The Punches:

“It is truly a blessing. But I’m going to be tired for the rest of my life. When you’re up at 3 o’clock in the morning, and they pee on you, you just have to smile.” 

On The Prospect Of Having More Kids

“Oh hell no. You don’t let them outnumber you. There’s two of us, there’s two of them. That’s it!”

On The Reality Of Parenthood

“Having kids is like hiring an interior decorator just to [mess] up your house ... ‘Do you have any applesauce or mint jelly? I need to put that in your cushions.’”

On Having White Children

“White kids were not my first choice. It’s all they had left ... Madonna and Angelina Jolie, they got here before you. Sandra Bullock took the last one ... ‘OK, gimme those two. Somebody’s got to take care of the white babies.’ I love my white babies. They’re cool ― for white babies.”

On Parenthood’s Effect On Her Stand-Up

“It’s changed drastically. I would just say that the topics have changed. Before, I would just talk about what’s going on in my life. Here’s a snapshot of what’s happening to me or around the world, and since the kids it’s still the same technique as far as I’m talking about what’s happening, but a lot of it is about the kids and the family, because they just take over everything, you know? I don’t really have the chance to sit down and go through articles and everything, the kids just take over ... If I’m talking about something current, a current issue or something political, it’s because I was able to read it when I was on the plane getting to the gig ... A lot of it happens when I’m on the road because when I’m home, you’re just mom and that’s it. They don’t care; they don’t care about your job. ‘I wanna get in the pool!’”

On Balancing Work And Family

“It’s all about time management. When I have to work and be somewhere, that’s where I am. My wife travels also ― she’s a VP in sales. We have a big calendar; we map everything out and stay on schedule. And we take time to be together.”

On How Motherhood Inspired Her To Come Out

“I just got married, and then it was the Prop 8 thing in California ― and that just made me angry ― and then also, we were planning on having a kid ... You can’t make the kid feel like there is something wrong or there is shame in it. So definitely, that was a motivator to come out.” 

On Crafting With Her Kids

“It’s like recon for me. It’s kind of like getting a look into their little brains ... I’m trying to figure out ‘What do I have here, what’s going on? Is anyone drawing a knife?’”

On Playing A Lesbian Mom On ‘Doc McStuffins’

“I am a fan of ‘Doc McStuffins,’ my kids watch the show. With this episode, they will see a family that looks like our family. We’re two moms, and we have a boy and a girl, and it’s going to be very exciting for them to see our family represented. We’re a family, and families stick together.”

On Watching Late-Night Talk Shows

“With two kids now? I will be in bed. I TiVo everything. I’m serious. I can’t make it past 10 o’clock watching TV.”


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