It was bad enough that the erstwhile Lorraine forced her daughter into the Dawn of Day cult — and into its leader Shiloh’s bed. But to further cement her spot on our worst list, she turned out to not even be Willow’s real mother!
Best: Taylor Hayes, The Bold and the Beautiful
“You? A model child?” Despite the way that Thomas turned out, his and Steffy’s mom did alright, if not all right, by the kids.
Worst: Diane Jenkins, The Young and the Restless
The scheme queen probably did Kyle a favor by letting him grow up believing that she’d been murdered. But try telling that to her son, whose emotional wounds she selfishly reopened by upending his life with her “resurrection.”
Best: Olivia Quartermaine, General Hospital
Not only did Dante Falconeri’s sensible mom keep him safely away from his made-man father for decades, she shielded son Leo with Julian Jerome from his dad’s criminal activities as best she could, too.
Worst: Kristen DiMera, Days of Our Lives
Far be it from us to point fingers, but if you, on the other hand, wanted to blame Stefano’s daughter for the fact that her daughter Rachel has turned out to be such an abominable bad seed, we might quietly cheer you on from the sidelines.
Best: Bert Bauer, Guiding Light
Her poker face left something to be desired, son Mike might’ve admitted. But, strong of will and stout of heart, the matriarch of Springfield’s troubled Bauer clan was by and large such a ray of hope that she could well have been the inspiration for the soap’s title.
Worst: Dina Mergeron, The Young and the Restless
Oh, we know, we know — she and her kids kissed and made up in the end. But there wouldn’t have been so many hard feelings to soften if Dina hadn’t been a more glamorous than nurturing mom to begin with.
Best: Anna Devane, General Hospital
OK, so maybe Port Charles’ Wonder Woman did let Robin begin her life in a bit of a fog as to her origin story. Anna more than made up for it with the inspirational role model she became for her daughter and granddaughter.
Worst: Rae Woodard, Ryan’s Hope
Karma came back to bite this small-town girl after she made it big. Kim, the impetuous daughter she’d tried to leave in Podunk, tracked her down to challenge the notion that her domineering mother ever knew best.
Best: Marlena Evans, Days of Our Lives
It’s a good thing Sami and Eric’s mom is a shrink; otherwise, she might have long ago gone mad trying to curb her daughter’s tendency to act on impulse and her son’s “here today, gone tomorrow” approach to his priest’s collar.
Worst: Brooke Logan, The Bold and the Beautiful
Since this is daytime we’re talking about, we could give her a pass for shtupping one of her daughters’ husbands. But two? And yet another daughter’s boyfriend? No. Sorry. No Mother’s Day card for you, Brooke.
Best: Nikki Newman, The Young and the Restless
Sure, she once slept with a horseman who’d go on to marry daughter Victoria. Nikki is still the Newman likeliest to try to keep anyone from stampeding at the ranch. And she’s the more fun parent with whom to judge party guests like this chick who is clearly just there for the open bar.
Worst: Vanessa Bennett, All My Children
Mirror, mirror in her hand, who would cut you where you stand? David and Leo’s mad, mad mama, that’s who. There are freaking caves that aren’t as batty as the homicidal maniac who spawned the brothers.
Best: Alice Horton, Days of Our Lives
As sweet as her legendary donuts, the Horton family’s indefatigably patient matriarch wasn’t just a model mom to her own kids but a beloved surrogate one to countless lost souls in Salem.
Worst: Sheila Carter, The Bold and the Beautiful
There’s no good reason why the madwoman’s children want less than zero contact with her. There are, in fact, a bazillion good reasons! Finn’s? She, uh… she shot him “dead” while attempting to murder his wife, Steffy.
Best: Liz Foster, The Young and the Restless
The single mom worked a crap job for years to support her kids. She always had advice at the ready, whether or not it was wanted. And with regard to daughter Jill (Brenda Dickson here)… Well, points for trying, Liz.
Worst: Carly Corinthos, General Hospital
No matter how many of her children got kidnapped, shot at or killed, Sonny’s moll refused to get unmarried from the Mob. Until, that is, the made man developed both a case of amnesia and the hots for another woman.
Best: Hope Brady, Days of Our Lives
All the moms on our “best” list would tell you that they’d do anything for their kids. But Ciara and Shawn’s mother is unique in that not only would the butt-kicking detective do anything for them, she actually could, too.
Worst: Sophia Capwell, Santa Barbara
Son Ted doesn’t appear to be holding it against Mom here, but she lost a lotta points in the parenting pageant after killing his half brother and abandoning him and sisters Eden and Kelly for the better part of their lives.
Best: Maeve Ryan, Ryan’s Hope
When Mary, Frank, Pat and Siobhan were hurting, there was no more sympathetic ear to bend than their soulful mom’s. Unless they were the cause of their own pain, in which case, whoa, could Maeve’s love be tough!
Worst: Vanessa Prentiss, The Young and the Restless
Helicopter parents had nothin’ and Lance and Lucas’ mom, whose threats were rarely as veiled as her scarred face and who wound up plunging to her death in hopes of erasing from her boys’ life Lorie, aka the strumpet no mother wanted in the room, much less in-law.
Best: Portia Robinson, General Hospital
The doctor has raised in Trina an admirable young woman who knows that honesty is always the best policy. Uless there’s a question mark hanging over your daughter’s paternity. Then, erm, let’s call it a gray area.
Worst: Roxy Balsom, One Life to Live
Though the brassy beautician was often played for laughs, there was nothing funny about the screwed-up individuals that her “mothering” made of Natalie and Rex — and it turned out, they weren’t even Roxy’s kids!
Best: Ruth Martin, All My Children
The real testament to what a terrific mom Joe’s better half was isn’t the fine man that she raised Dr. Nice Guy Jake to be but the decent guy into which she ultimately helped turn his adopted brother, Tad the Cad.
Worst: Phyllis Summers, The Young and the Restless
“Diane is unforgivable! She let her child believe she was dead!” Summer and Daniel’s mom screamed for the better part of a year… before turning around and letting her children believe that she had died. D’oh!
Worst: Helena Cassadine, General Hospital
As if it wasn’t bad enough that Mommie Dearest played favorites with her kids — fawning over the vile Stavros — she tried to murder his brother Stefan and ordered the execution of their sister Irena!
Best: Elizabeth Webber, General Hospital
Cameron, Jake and Aiden’s mom would be the last person to say that she’s perfect. And she is as flawed as any of us. Yet she instills in her boys a can-do spirit that we only wish rubbed off more on us.
Worst: Stephanie Forrester, Bold & Beautiful
Looking at this photo, you can almost hear the domineering mama grizzly lie to son Thorne that she loves all her kids equally — even though we all know that Ridge was her favorite. Followed by Felicia, the blonde girl, Angela, Fake Angela and then, finally, Thorne.