Monday, May 14, 2012

Am I Mom Enough?

Anyone living under a rock and not know what my title refers to? ;) I would like to thank Time magazine for lighting another huge fire to the "mommy wars." I've read quite a bit of interesting information this week as people spout off AP (attachment parenting) inaccuracies. I've also watched a few extreme APers go off to prove they're "right" in inappropriate ways. *sigh*

I really wish that it didn't cost $4.99 just to get the Time magazine issue to read the story inside. Most people have yet to see more than the cover and many probably won't ever read the story. There have been a lot of assumptions from the cover too. Well, I spent the $4.99 and downloaded it to my iPad so I could know what was behind Time's interesting cover picture choice.

The majority of the article is about Dr Sears, his family, and their lives. Not breastfeeding 3 year olds. Not in depth interviews with families who practice AP (other than the Sears' family). Nothing is mentioned about being mom enough. The cover was there purely to attract attention, which it did. By the way, I have zero issue with breastfeeding being on the cover I just wish they had chosen a picture that shows the bond breastfeeding gives (which you can find here).

Other than information about Dr Sears, the article mentions the book Continuum Concept as being the roots of AP. It goes briefly into Dr. Sears' The Baby Book which introduced AP to most of America. It goes on to state that some moms feel "traumatized" for not being able to do everything by the book. Honestly I own the book, have read it, and don't see how it comes across to others as an all or nothing resource (there's even a chapter for working moms believe it or not!). The article does state that Sears tells people to do the best your can and stick with your instincts, NOT do everything perfectly or your child will suffer. AP is about instinctual parenting, not following a rule book. I feel there is a tone in the article assuming an "all or nothing" stance with AP which many in the AP community probably won't enjoy.

And for those who don't know anything about AP, trust me one of the "attachment tools" for AP is not extended breastfeeding into elementary school. It's simply breastfeeding. And please don't forget that the WHO (World Health Organization) recommends breastfeeding up to 2 years of age and beyond. This is not crazy AP moms going nuts.

In the end I don't really feel that the cover and the actual story had much to do with each other other than the mom practices AP. But that doesn't catch anyones attention and sell magazines does it?

(Sears posted his response on FaceBook:

1 comment:

Ginny said...

I hated the cover but only because it started another mommy war like you said. Number 1 we all love our children and we want to do what's best for them. I also hated the title. I think the "are you mom enough?" is so condescending!
I couldn't breastfeed Nyla past 4 months, I just dried up. And with Naomi it was 1 month so we switched to formula. This isn't what I intended and I hated having to give them formula but my body couldn't do it. So what's that mean for me I'm not a good enough mom? It sent doubt into my mind which is the last thing I need as a young and busy mother of two precious girls. But I'm sure I'm not the only one that had the doubt after seeing the title, picture and maybe reading the article.
I'm all for breastfeeding as long as the mother and baby want. Like you, the picture was ridiculous and it didn't look like a special bond like it really is.
I hate that it's starting a war. It's all just crazy and overboard and I hate they felt they had to do it to get some attention. The last thing we need to be battling about is how we raise our kids. We love them. That's all that matters.