Friday, May 11, 2012

A tired American - an angry rant


Ok, so this is risky, and I’m likely to attract plenty of debate but here I go.

First, why am I writing about this?  Because I took an oath to be a healer.  To me this means tolerance, justice, acceptance in order to achieve a greater good, in order to promote a healthy society.  So, I am just a little irritated today as I look at my country which appears to be at odds with itself.  My anger started while listening to NPR on the drive to work this morning and hearing about all of the discussion resulting from the TIME magazine cover of a model-like mom breastfeeding her three year old standing on a chair.  Criticisms flying everywhere about extended breastfeeding and self-important moms. There is the typical sexualization of breastfeeding with lots of reference to the attractiveness of the mom on the cover, and the usual “if they can ask for it” type comments.  (side note: newborns ask for it too - its called crying!!)  So funny, that anyone who decides to formula feed their infant gets nearly stoned for not going the “breast is best” route.  Then we flip it around and hate on the moms who keep breastfeeding.  I realize I’m using the proverbial “we.”  If this doesn’t apply to “you,” then feel free to ignore.  But for all the rest of us: Lets STOP THIS!  Mothers are always criticizing mothers - breastfeed or not breastfeed, work or stay at home, work a lot or a little, nanny or daycare or grandma, etc, etc.  Even Fizzy’s post last week, illustrated how quickly we jump to judgement.  As clinicians we do know the literature and the evidence, but the first step in being able to do no harm is gaining the TRUST and RESPECT of our patients, and in order to do this there needs to be more tolerance and listening.

Anyway, I’m just all revved up.  I live in the Amendment 1 state.  Justice, tolerance.  I won’t say anymore than that.  Our political system is full of polar opposites, butting heads and refusing to compromise.  We’re arguing over reproductive rights of women... AGAIN!  WHAT IS GOING ON!!!

Can’t we all just get along?

8 comments:

  1. I'm starting to think that all this Mommy Wars crap is designed to keep us tearing each other to bits and keep us distracted while, all around us, our rights are dismantled and our access to basic services is cut off. Not to mention the way it keeps WOMAN=MOTHER in the center of every discussion and MOTHER=COMPLETELY INDIVIDUALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS TO OUR CHILDREN WITHOUT ANY HELP FROM ANYONE. It's a load of horse manure, and it's about to kill us.

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  2. Totally agree. This is a non issue. Wanna breast feed till preschool? Go for it. Don't want to? Fine. We really dont need to be so involved in other peoples choices.

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  3. Mommy wars = Concoction by the media drummed up to get people to read the articles they write. How to win? Be confident in your parenting choices. Don't equate every choice you make as a mom with morality. And try to understand others.

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  4. Completely agree, of course. These are such personal choices.

    I have to admit, it was a little satisfying when my "breastfeeding mentor", who judged me and mocked me on her blog for supplementing with formula when my baby was small, started to realize what it felt like to be judged when her child was three and still nursing.

    Also, are we still allowed to judge a woman who's willing to allow her three year old to pose on the cover of a major magazine with his mouth on his mother's nipple? Because I'm having a lot of trouble not doing that ;)

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  5. LOL -I agree with Fizzy. The only thing I could think of when I saw that cover was, man when that kid is in high school he is gonna be pissssseeeed (that and probably teased to death).

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  6. Well said, Old MD girl! I am tired of the mommy wars. It's time to move on...

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  7. Can you guys imagine how much we could get done if we directed all this vitriol at those who (male politicians, for starters) who, as the above poster said, want to slowly dismantle our rights and take away basic services? Let's stop criticizing each other's choices and start reminding each other about what happens when women don't have choices.

    We are so powerful and productive and intelligent and GOOD at communicating.

    And when we get fired up and put our minds to something (I mean, look at what we do on a daily basis for Christ's sake) we are a force to be reckoned with, but that power is directed at entirely the wrong place right now, and it's to our individual and collective detriment.

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  8. "It's called crying..." That point simply made my day. Personal choice should indeed be respected. Comments were very well put - and yes, I hope the young boy isn't affected by the TIME cover in the future.

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