Everyone loves Lorelai Gilmore. She’s intelligent, beautiful and a great mom. Her character inspired a lot of solo moms and dads out there and showed them to pursue a dream.
It’s hard to criticize such a well-loved mother figure, right? But like anyone else, Lorelai Gilmore also has her flaws. Don’t we all?
After so many years to binge-watch the show on a semi-regular basis, it’s kind of hard not to notice that Lorelai isn’t the perfect mom we all wanted when we were teens. Not to worry, we still love her.
Many current moms were probably in their teens or in college when Gilmore Girls became a powerhouse phenomenon. It was one of the first popular series written by a woman and starring two adorable women.
It was hard to focus on any possible mistakes the Lorelai made when Stars Hollow seemed so perfect. Perhaps the way we used to have to watch the show also gave us selective memory. When you have to pay attention to a weekly schedule and can’t rewind an episode, you just focus on the quick banter, coffee jokes, and movie nights.
Here are a few things Lorelai Gilmore did that good moms wouldn’t do.
20. POP-TARTS AS A SNACK
Pop Tarts are often a necessary pantry staple in many homes. With busy schedules and other obligations, it’s sometimes a breakfast option for many children who are too picky to eat something else.
However, the snack has recently come under fire for having so much sugar. Fans have noticed exactly how much Pop Tarts Lorelai and Rory have eaten though.
In fact, one fan even did an entire food diary for the show before A Year in the Life was released. It’s safe to say that although some parents have Pop-Tarts around, they’re not going to let their kids have that many of them!
19. LETTING RORY DRINK THAT MUCH COFFEE
Most parents have a hard time handling a hyper child or a surly teenager. That means caffeine intake will be closely monitored until children are determined to be able to handle a cup of coffee.
We know Lorelai practically vacuums coffee throughout the show. This quality made her relatable to most adults, who probably can’t see without at least a cup of coffee in their sleep-deprived bodies.
Rory was still in high school when the show began and Lorelai lets her drink copious amounts of joe. Most parents probably place a limit on their teens’ coffee consumption. Not everyone can afford to go to Luke’s Diner that often anyway!
18. …AND EAT THAT MUCH TAKE-OUT
Take-out is yet another necessary convenience in a parent’s repertoire. There are some days when cooking is just too much to handle for many adults.
Though it doesn’t have the best reputation, it definitely tasted good. But again, most good moms do their best to discourage their children from eating too much take-out or fast food.
Of course, we often see Lorelai and Rory have a ton of pizza, sample as many take-out places as possible, and of course, visit Luke’s Diner.
We can console ourselves by remembering that this is a TV show and some of the meal choices are for comic effect. But still…
17. ELABORATE BIRTHDAY PARTIES
We can understand that Lorelai had such an awesome 16th birthday party. You only go through this rite of passage once.
Lorelai is known for elaborate birthday parties that seem cool on the outside but set a very high bar for other parents.
On the one hand, Rory was a rather exceptional child and quite mature for her age. But many children would probably become spoiled rotten if they expected a fabulous B-day bash every year.
Again, this is a TV show and the prop department took care of most things. In real life, can someone do this once a year? Probably not.
16. HAVE THIS MANY MESSY RELATIONSHIPS
Even though Rory was quite mature for her age, she also made bad decisions like a regular human. Her relationships got messy from to time.
There were times when Rory made mistakes because she needed more space but failed to communicate her needs or wants. This meant staying with someone else for a bit longer. And on top of this, she sometimes made bad decisions with exes!
Yes, parents have to let their children thrive and make their own mistakes. It’s just that maybe some advice from Lorelai would have helped Rory avoid certain pitfalls from time to time. A word from mom wouldn’t have hurt!
15. THE SILENT TREATMENT
Best friends don’t ever argue, right? We all know they do, but moms and daughters sort of have a bond that can’t be undone as easily as that of a regular friend.
When things were great between Lorelai and Rory, they were awesome. The thing is, they also sometimes gave each other the silent treatment when things went wrong.
Remember when Rory stole a boat and sought refuge at Emily’s house? Or the time when Sookie had a better relationship with Rory thanks to the silent treatment?
It’s clear that both of them have communication issues. As the mom, Lorelai should’ve taken more initiative.
14. DATE RORY’S TEACHER
Max Medina was sweet, smart, and kind. Everyone loved him, and Lorelai got a chance to do so as well!
If things had gone well, then maybe we wouldn’t be so harsh about this. Unfortunately, Lorelai put Rory in an awkward position by dating one of Chilton’s favorite teachers.
Things got even worse when she broke up with Max and then got back together with him.
Then, Lorelai and Max got engaged but the wedding didn’t happen. Now that was even more awkward for Rory, who had to see her mother’s ex at school until graduation. It makes for good TV, but that’s just not good!
13. DEPEND ON RORY
Many parents see Lorelai as a good parent who treats Rory like an adult. Not everyone agrees with this approach, including experts on childhood development.
Though Rory was a teenager, she often came to Lorelai’s rescue despite the fact that Lorelai had Sookie and other adults in her life.
It’s normal for children to drop things if something really bad is going on with their parents, but some fans quickly noticed that there were times when Rory was more like Lorelai’s mom.
Whether it’s because Lorelai was a teen mom, or because of how close they were, but this was kind of unhealthy.
12. TALK ABOUT PERSONAL MOMENTS
Christopher Hayden, Rory’s father, was also a privileged WASP. He seemed nice enough, but his and Lorelai’s attempts at a relationship never went well and added a lot of drama to both of their lives.
But things get strange when Lorelai discuss far too many details about Christopher with Rory. Children are smart and they can pick up when things with their parents are off.
It’s best for parents to keep a few things to themselves when it comes to some details about their lives. That’s something Lorelai didn’t always do for Rory. She was a teenager who knew too much about her mom!
11. COMPLAIN ABOUT HER PARENTS
Lorelai was a mom, but she still kept her inner wild child. Sure, her parents didn’t always understand her, but they wanted to provide for her and help Rory, as well.
It was rare for Lorelai to have something positive to say about her parents. Most of the time, she complained about their fancy ways. Maybe it would’ve been good for Lorelai to keep some complaints to herself or to do so with other adults.
Rory was actually quite close to her grandparents, so hearing Lorelai’s constant complaints must have been distressing for her. Plus, she benefitted from their assistance too!
10. INVENT BINGE-WATCHING
Thanks to Netflix, we can all binge-watch like the Gilmore Girls! A family movie night is often an opportunity to become closer, but it’s not always the best thing to do.
After all, there are places to hike, things to do, and a binge-watch session at the Gilmore’s involves a ton of junk food.
Now, parents today probably have to argue with their kids about binge-watching sessions, but they try to make sure things are balanced. It’s good for kids to have hobbies outside of junk food and binge-watching.
But this is Lorelai after all. A good movie night is always tempting.
9. ENCOURAGE RORY TO BE MEAN
Lorelai often made witty comments and jokes. We love her for that, but there were times when she took things too far.
It’s hard to keep up with as many obscure references to books, films, and movies. There were times when we’re sure Lorelai didn’t live up to her own standards of what is considered to be good and acceptable.
Fans didn’t notice this too much when the series first ran, but there were times when Lorelai even encouraged Rory to look down on other people.
We mostly loved Lorelai and still do. There were just times when she encouraged Rory to be mean.
8. BE TOO CLOSE TO RORY
Rory felt she could tell Lorelai just about everything. This seems super-cool on the surface, but children have to learn to set boundaries. This is what sets them up for success with their future children, right?
But Lorelai learned so much about Rory that one time she even invited Dean over, just to help Rory spend time with her crush. Now that was weird!
It’s important for kids to learn how to ask for what they want and learn that they may get rejected along the way. Mom can’t always be there to help get a date. (Then again, it kinda worked.)
7. LET HER RELATIONSHIP WITH EMILY GET IN THE WAY OF FIXING HER HOUSE
Compared to her parents, Lorelai lives in a relatively humble home. In Season 2 of the show, it turns out there was a termite infestation that had to be taken care of.
Rory was close to her grandparents, so she told them about the problem during dinner. Emily immediately offered to help Lorelai fix her home. That sounds so sweet and most adult kids would really appreciate the extra help from their rich parents.
Is Lorelai grateful? No! Instead, she gets angry at Rory for mentioning the problem and tries to find alternative solutions. It’s one of the few times we see Lorelai raise her voice at Rory this much.
6. HAVING WEIRD RULES ABOUT MEN SHE DATES—THEN BREAKING THEM
Dating as a solo parent is hard. It’s understandable that Lorelai is protective or Rory and has a few set boundaries for men she dates. But then, Lorelai ends up breaking said rules.
For example, Lorelai wanted Rory to keep some distance from Max for a bit. I mean, dating your kid’s teacher is awkward, right?
But then, she asked Rory to open the door for her date—who turned out to be Max! Lorelai wanted to finish getting ready, but this meant she had to be more flexible about random rules.
At the very least, having consistent rules would’ve been good, right?
5. REFUSING HELP FROM ANYONE IN GENERAL
Lorelai was fiercely independent, but this often came at a cost to her and Rory. Back to the termite invasion, we should mention that not only did Emily offer to help her, but so did Luke.
Both of them offered interest-free options too! We get that she wanted to figure things out, but Lorelai wasn’t without options. We often saw her refuse help for various things: Rory’s tuition to Chilton and Yale, issues with her home, and also with the Dragonfly Inn.
This just made her life harder and made it more difficult to focus on being a mom, too.
4. WANTING RORY TO GO TO HARVARD
As parenting goes, aspiring for a child to get into Harvard isn’t bad. Rory truly was capable of achieving that goal—and she did! But she wanted Rory to get into Harvard because her parents went to Yale.
Not only did Rory have an amazing education at Chilton, but being the descendant of alumni also helped her get into Yale. In the end, Rory got into three Ivy League universities: Harvard, Princeton, and Yale.
Rory was a lucky child, and in the end, she chose what she wanted even if Lorelai wasn’t 100% happy. It’s just too bad that Rory didn’t feel her mother’s support.
3. REFUSE TO SPEND TIME WITH EMILY
Emily and Richard Gilmore were definitely elites, but they really did care for Lorelai and Rory. We’re sure that it was sometimes difficult for Lorelai to accept Emily’s criticism, but we can give Lorelai’s parents some credit.
They truly saw potential in Lorelai and wanted her to have the best. When she wouldn’t accept this, they wanted to provide this for their granddaughter.
Instead of trying to meet them halfway, Lorelai mostly spent time with her parents out of obligation. We see that during Friday night dinners.
Though it often seemed like Emily was trying to bribe Lorelai into spending time with her, she just wanted to get to know her daughter a bit better.
2. BE RUDE TO HER FATHER—AT HIS FUNERAL
Richard Gilmore was kind and compassionate. When he passed away, the Gilmore girls were left with a void.
There were many things Lorelai could’ve done to cherish his memory. By all means, much of their lack of communication was actually because of Lorelai.
She chose to leave after getting pregnant with Rory, and that’s where many of their problems stem from. She may have been a teenager when she became a mom, but we all have to grow up eventually.
Instead, she turned her speech into an angry diatribe about how her father wasn’t there for her. There’s proof this isn’t true.
1. BE MORE IMMATURE THAN RORY
A lot has been written about Lorelai and Rory’s dynamic. It makes for great TV, but many fans point out that Rory was often the adult in the relationship.
We often see Rory run to her mother’s rescue if she catches feelings for someone, has to complain about something, or needs to get back down to earth.
From silent treatments to frequent squabbles with her parents, Lorelai didn’t always exhibit the most adult behavior.
All parents can be accused of this, but they often try to be more of a parent to their children instead of trying to be their friend. Most moms at least try to be the mature one.