why the mother hate?


There’s a great article up on salon.com by Lynn Harris (an old college friend): Everybody Hates Mommy. Lynn’s POV is that there’s an increasing intolerance– OK, hate– towards mothers, and mothering, and all the “space” we are supposedly taking up that belongs to other people. Oy, Lynn, I am with you, though for me, it’s more about the eye-rolling. I attended a book launch party last week, hosted by a parenting website, and this guy turns to me at the bar and says, “So, what’re you? A mommy blogger?” Mere italics cannot really get across the dripping-with-revulsion vibe he gave this particular term. I said, “Um, yes, actually, and I’m very good at it.”

I mean, are you kidding me? This was for a parenting book, hosted by a parenting website. Parenting websites would have nothing to print if they dismissed all “mommy bloggers” out of hand. If you don’t like mom blogs, don’t read them, but seriously, don’t give me attitude in a room that was crawling with mothers who write. Why did this guy think that was OK?

Read Lynn’s article. I hear the hate baiters are out in full force on the comments section, so I’m skipping that part… I can’t enjoy them anymore ever since the crazy hose was turned on me full blast back in April. (I mean I read YOUR comments, of course, but usually, no one is telling me that my children– then 6, 4, and 1– should put me in a home.)

How about you? Do you think there is increasing disdain and impatience for mothers? Is it merely a backlash to our increasing volume on the internet, or is there more going on?

(photo taken from salon.com article)

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Roxane B. Salonen November 23, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Amy, it's sad. I admit I haven't read the article yet, but I promise I will, and then perhaps I'll be back for more. For now, I'm in a rush doing the "mom thing." I know — totally unimportant, right? We are only raising up the next generations. If not for mothers, this world would be in sad shape. Wait a minute, it wouldn't exist. Hmmm…I think we deserve a little honor. My gut feeling: backlash from the years of us promoting we could have it all. We can't have it all, and those who thought we could are realizing it and having a severe reaction. I think it's fabulous you're making a name for yourself by extolling the very hard work of mothering. Another issue: in our society, we are valued by what we make (income). Thus, we are at the bottom of the heap. It's okay. It will all come out right in the end.

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Katie A. November 23, 2009 at 9:46 pm

I feel for you…although not a mother yet, just being a normal person in society and seeing how people treat mothers is enough of a scare for me. I'm off to read the article, and hope that it doesn't scare me off even more! 🙂

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Christy C. November 24, 2009 at 12:43 am

I don't think the disdain is for "good attentive, aware mothers", it's for the ones who make children and then refuse to raise them well. I am in awe whenever I see a mother in public with well behaved children. My hat goes off to those ladies. Almost any woman can bear a child, it takes someone special to be a good Mom.

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Annie Duncan November 24, 2009 at 5:10 pm

whatever you do, don't read the comments. I did, and now I'm all pissed off. I think the problem is that there are moms out there like this, and there are bad moms. And because those moms exist, people assume that all moms are like that, which couldn't be further from the truth. I am so tired of people grouping all mothers together like we are all the same. Why does anybody give a shit about what I am doing? Mind your own damn business.

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Our Wee Family November 25, 2009 at 8:06 pm

Anytime people are really passionate about a topic and forget to put a filter on their comments, discussions can quickly lead to hurtful statements and accusations. Even when you're pouring your heart out and feeling vulnerable, others find something nasty to say. It's true in the mom blogosphere, as well as other "worlds" – can anyone say youth athletics? Instead of trying to lift up one another, we many times try to pull each other down to make up for our own faults.

I just read your article and loved it. I hope your daughter does read it someday. I hope she realizes how real, open, honest and loving you were when you wrote it. I hope she realizes that when she someday stands on the verge of motherhood that it's OK to be nervous, scared, overjoyed and a little mixed-up, all at the same time. I hope she can embrace motherhood with the same passion and honesty that you obviously do.

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Inner Toddler November 25, 2009 at 8:06 pm

yes and yes and yes and that guy at the bar needs a smack down. I think a lot of the backlash comes from the moms themselves (ourselves). Too much insecurity out there. I'm going to read the article now. thanks for the tip.

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