Monday, May 14, 2012

"mom enough?"

Recently, TIME Magazine ran an article about attachment parenting, timed it right at Mother's Day and put the image of a 26 year old mother breastfeeding her 3-year old son on the cover.  Now, don't get me wrong, like most moms, I have an opinion on the idea of breast feeding a 3-year old person.  But that is a blog for another day.  My thoughts for today are more focused on the title so boldly featured on the cover of the magazine.."ARE YOU MOM ENOUGH?"

I am a mom; a working, married, busy mom of two amazing children.  Regardless of my parenting style - I believe I AM mom enough

The title of the article is, in my opinion as a mom and woman, fairly offensive, hurtful and downright disrespectful to the role of the mother in modern day America.  I do not believe that breastfeeding until a child is 3 makes someone more of a mom than me.  I also do not believe that letting your child sleep in your bed with you makes you more of a mom than me.  Staying home with your children does not make you more of a mom than me either. 

Being a good mom is about finding what works for you and doing it.  I do not think that any parenting style is "more mom" than another.  We have to remember as moms that we are all in this together.  WE are members of an exclusive, amazingly personal club.  We have the distinct honor, pleasure and responsibility of raising small citizens of our world.  Regardless of how they get there, we expect and hope that they will grow up to be responsible members of society.  We are the ones who are molding them into the future of the planet through modeling, provding guidance and teaching them how to treat others.  Being "mom enough" is performing these duties selflessly, with honor and to the best of our ability.  It is not about creating a divide between moms by categorizing one parenting style as "more mom" than another. 

Sadly, as much as it pains moe to admit this - my marketing mind is impressed with this article and cover.  The idea of showcasing a breast feeding, thin, attractive, 26 year old woman with her 3-year old son on the cover of TIME Magazine is truly brilliant.  By timing this article with Mother's Day, featuring a young, attractive woman and her toddler engaged in breast feeding on the cover and adding a devisive title they have managed to renew the public's interest in print media.  From a business standpoint, I believe the creative people and marketing staff at TIME should be given some sort of bonus.  The debate that this article and cover have sparked should lead to increased circulation and I'm guessing a spike in subscription sales.  And as it pains me to admit - it is always the edgy product (article, idea, thought, etc.) that will get the most notice and in turn, provide the fuel to fan the intellectual fire you see here today. 

Ultimately, regardless of what this article insinuates about moms, I believe we are all "mom enough." We give life, raise small people and ultimately (if all goes well) help them navigate away from us into the adult world.  We play the part of teachers, doctors, critics, fans, chauffeurs, janitors and chefs to please our little ones.  We provide them with food and clothing, teach them skills that will help them transform into meaningful members of society and give them unconditional love.  Being "mom enough" is bigger than breast-feeding or co-sleeping.  Being "mom enough" is about love, respect and family. 

I am "mom enough"...are you?