Sunday, May 13, 2012

The Cover of Time: My Take

Alright...  I'll jump in.  The cover of TIME... Are You Mom Enough?


I have no desire to post the cover here and my guess is you've seen it.  Is it offensive and awful?  Is it loving and right?  Is she a better mom than I am?  Is she a bad mom?


Here's my take...  Based on this cover, I don't know what kind of mom she is.  I didn't read the article because I find TIME magazine to be a waste of my time nearly every time I pick it up.  I honestly don't care if moms want to breastfeed their kids until they're 3 or 4 or however old this little boy is.  I have no issue with the model of attachment parenting.  I have no issue with other styles of parenting.  As long as children are well cared for, safe, and loved by their parents, I don't see why it matters what other's preferences are when it comes to this kind of stuff.


I breastfeed.  I have breastfed all of my children anywhere from 12-14 months.  I think if it is something that you can do and want to do, it is a very wonderful, precious thing.  God is creative to make the natural way to feed a baby not only a means of nourishment, but also a sweet time of bonding for mother and baby.  But I also know it isn't always an option, and NO mother should ever be made to feel bad about that no matter what her reasons are.


My children have been around breastfeeding their whole lives.  I feed their baby siblings in front of them.  It isn't a big deal.  They don't think about it.  When friends come over and breastfeed, my kids don't think a thing of it.  It is very much "normal" to them.  Yet, I still don't want them to see the cover of TIME.  


Why?


In my opinion it isn't normal.  And I'm not talking the little boy's age, that honestly just doesn't concern me.  In my opinion, the picture depicts breastfeeding in a sexual way.  Mom is standing in a supermodel pose.  The child is standing on a chair.  This isn't the natural way to breastfeed a child.  Breastfeeding is a time of nourishment, comfort, and connection between mother and child.  This photo doesn't convey that at all.  So as a mother whose children are used to being around breastfeeding, I think this picture would raise questions for them, and quite possibly make my older sons uncomfortable, and rightfully so. I don't think this sparks healthy questions or healthy perceptions of breastfeeding.


The very question "Are You Mom Enough?" is also quite offensive.  Breastfeeding doesn't make you a good mother.  A certain parenting style doesn't make you a good mother.  


I will say the good I have seen come from this is moms from all walks have united against this attempt to reignite the ongoing "Mommy Wars."  And we should unite against this blatant attempt to turn us on each other.  Don't play into their hand.  This whole Mommy Wars thing must stop!  None of us is perfect, but I do believe most of us are doing our best.  


"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing."
1 Thessalonians 5:11 NIV


P.S.
Here are a few amazing blog posts about this topic that I think say some very thought provoking and worthwhile things for us to consider.


Where is the Mommy-War for the Motherless Child?   At Rage Against the Minivan {This is a Mommy War worth fighting in!}


Dear Mothers... At Are all These Kids Yours? {Some encouragement from one of the most inspiring mothers I know!}


Are You Journalist Enough?: How the Media Fails All Parents At The Common Room {She's not afraid to tell it like it is, and she's right!}

3 comments:

  1. I kept trying to think about words to describe how I felt about this magazine cover. You conveyed my sentiments exactly, Emily! Thank you.

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  2. This is exactly what've been thinking. You wrote it just as I think it is sister!! However, I did find it a little bizarre that here in Arizona family stores (wal-mart, Safeway, Kroger, etc...) removed that issue from their shelves. I find it bizarre because although I personally do not agree with the picture in the cover...how can this be more offensive to some than other pictures or titles in other magazines such as People, Star, US..just to name a few. It seems like they are never consistent ;). Love ya my friend!!

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