What does Matilda's mother do all day in Matilda?

Matilda's mother, Mrs. Wormwood, spends most of her time playing bingo or watching mindless soaps on TV. She may not be a villain in the same league as Miss Trunchbull, but she's still a villain. Truth be told, she couldn't care less about her children. A selfish woman, she has no time for her family and neglects their needs.

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Mrs. Wormwood is a selfish, superficial woman, the kind not cut out to be a mother. Everything in her life is all about her. She's the center of her own universe and has no time for anyone else. That includes her children, whom she disgracefully neglects. Instead of doing normal, motherly things like playing with them, cooking for them, or reading them bedtime stories, Mrs. Wormwood would rather be playing bingo or sitting around watching TV.

She's so preoccupied with her own needs and interests that she's blissfully unaware of the existence of a genius under her own roof, namely Matilda. Even if Mrs. Wormwood did notice Matilda's extraordinary intelligence, she wouldn't think any more highly of her. As she tells her daughter "Looks is more important than books". For Mrs. Wormwood, a girl should be preoccupied with making herself attractive for a future husband instead of reading, as Matilda likes to do.

On the whole, Mrs. Wormwood isn't as bad a parent as her husband. Whereas her loathsome husband is actively unpleasant towards his children, Mrs. Wormwood is more neglectful, demonstrating a complete lack of concern for their welfare. But that's bad enough. Mrs. Wormwood leaves a lot to be desired in the mother department.

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