Monday, November 15, 2010

a response to "Mother Madness"...

Mother Madness by Erica Jong on was printed  in the Wall Street Journal on November 6, 2010, following is my response/thoughts on it.

Okay, i disliked this article. I can’t help but wonder if deep inside she feels some guilt for her own daughter being raised by the nanny and the houseman. Her daughter believes she felt “children were the death of a dream; they were the death of one's ambition”. I wonder if she feels guilt for once feeling that way Or if she still does and the nastiness she appears to feel towards attachments parenting stems from that feeling.

     First of all I feel she is wrong about there being an “orgy of motherphilia for at least the last two decades”. Sure in the last decade it seems like there have been many stars having children, but perhaps that’s just because it is the last decade I have been most aware of. People have children, even stars. To discredit these women’s desire to be mothers by saying they “want their own little replicas”, I find quite rude. So if a woman becomes a successful actress or musician she is supposed to lose all desire to have children? And if they do have children it is out of a desire to have a human accessory not because of the same desire that “ordinary” women have children for?

     I also do not understand why a mother cannot practice attachment parenting while having other people involved in her child’s life. I understand not everyone have friends or loved ones close by, that is not their fault. I practice attachment parenting (minus cloth diapering, but really how much does what’s on their butt have to do with how they are being raised?) but Sam’s grandmothers, grandfather, aunt and a slew of non-blood family members are involved in his life. I attachment parent within my village raising my child, and you can too! ;)

     I find it quite sad that she feels the “expectations” of attachment parenting victimize women. It saddens me that anyone would think any aspect of motherhood is victimizing; I find motherhood to be invigorating.  But I also feel this to be nothing new, there has long been a stigma on stay-at-home moms. I will never understand why people do not realize not everyone feels the way they do. Just because you would rather work and feel being home raising your children is entrapment doesn’t mean all women feel that way.

     The opinion that women who chose to raise their children following the ideals of attachment parenting are doing so for the intent of molding perfect children is foolish. I can only speak for myself but I am not raising my son the way I am in hopes of it making him perfect. Even though I do believe it benefits him to raise him as I do, I am also doing it for me. I do what I do not because I am thinking “this will make him a perfect person” but because I am thinking “this is what feels right”.   She also seems to assume that because I practice attachment parenting with my infant, I will smother my child as he grows resulting in his ability to solve problems himself being impaired. I find this to be insulting and ridiculous. Baby wearing, breastfeeding and co sleeping do not evolve to total dependence on the mother as an adult.

      I think the only correct thing she says in this article is that “We need someone to say: Do the best you can. There are no rules.”  She needs to remember this while writing so harshly on the way others chose to parent. 

1 comment:

  1. As much as I am all for AP I do think some of the nastiest closed minded woman I have EVER encountered are those hard core attachment parents, and pro lactivists. Yes I regret the feeding choices I made however having them SCREAM that I have ruined my child's life because I used formula is rather off putting to say the least I'm NOT saying she has encountered this but if so it can be VERY infuriating... and this article is sad but so are ones that insinuate a mother choosing to return to work are any less of a mom for leaving their kids in another's care there is far to much guilt/regret on both sides of the fence and sadly this is what happens...