Failing as a mother is Beverly Goldberg's greatest nightmare, but also her most powerful guilt card for when her children threaten to go against her wishes.
Beverly: Sweetie, you have to eat.
Erica: Food reminds me of Drew. He used to eat food.
Beverly: Baby, if you don't eat, then I have failed as a mother.
Barry: Mom? Are you kidding me right now? Move.
Beverly: I will not move. I will never move. You're my special boy. If you end up being just a head, then I have failed as a mother.
Beverly: Do you know what could happen in four minutes? You could drown, choke, eat poison berries. And if any of that happens, then I have failed as a mother.
Beverly: Well, I'm sick of this, Murray. Adam was right, I have failed as a mother. Literally. Our children are van people.
Beverly: If that's what you really think of me, then I have failed as a mother.
Beverly: I have failed as a mother and as a temporary mother.
Beverly: I cooked you in my lady kitchen. You were my greatest dish, and this is how you treat me?
Adam: I wasn't really thinking about your lady kitchen when I was reading your lousy book.
Beverly: [gasps] Gasp of gasps! I have clearly failed as a mother!
Adam: And as a cookbook author.
Beverly: I just want you to know that what you have done to me is worse than any horse stomp. Because I still have eyes to see how my beautiful boy betrayed me.
Adult Adam: [v.o.] She hated the sandwich, so I tried one more slice of bread.
Adam: But... you did it, girl?
Mrs. Kim: "Not only am I ashamed to have such a cruel, selfish son, but I may never sleep again knowing how I failed as a mother." My God, who writes this?
Beverly: Literally me, no joke. Next comes the body of the letter, in which you present the many hurtful specifics that demonstrate how much you've sacrificed for your baby.
Virginia Kremp: "I haven't slept since you were born and gave my whole life to you. Not once did I focus on myself. I could have been a lawyer!"
Beverly: Again, something I actually wrote to my children.
Beverly: Dad, I stumbled upon something incredible hidden in Erica's room, and I need to tell someone, but I can't because she'll never forgive me. Okay, you twisted my arm, so here it is. I'm Erica's hero. Me, baby, me!
Pops: Well, I'm glad this worked out for you.
Beverly: You know what this means, right? I have succeeded as a mother. Now, I know there were times when I quietly wondered if I had failed as a mother, but now I know the truth. Success!
Erica: Mom's a mess.
Beverly: I have failed as a mother.
Erica: I can't take it, Barry.
Beverly: As a woman.
Erica: Either you tell her-
Beverly: and as a human person.
Erica: -or I will.
Beverly: This is all your fault, Phil Donahue. You gorgeous, white-haired bastard.