Mommy Wars Day 18,250+

Diego Rivera, Motherhood – 1928

If you read much these days you know we are deep in year FOREVER (plus or minus a few decades) of the Mommy Wars. As the war continues on, new innocents join the battle fields (the whole pregnancy glow is a great recruitment technique, IMO) and bold new voices emerge to draw and defend the latest line between good and bad, savvy and simple, evolved and remedial. And, if you spend much time with me, you  likely know that I have a theory. It goes something like this:

The Mommy Wars begin as early as that first glance at a positive pregnancy test. That first glimpse into the reality of one’s own maternity causes an immediate whiplash that forces the mom-to-be to quickly examine her workplace. And when one’s mind wanders to the big, bad question of “what now” — the answer and the trap lies firmly in the lap of the workplace.

The once passionate, loyal and coveted employee is suddenly forced make rapid-fire decisions about who she will be, and as such- which side of the Mommy Wars she will play for.  All this because here in the proserpus United States of America we neiter have an active legistlative mandate nor private sector support for keeping our best and brightest women in the workplace.

And so women chose. But only because here in the United States we have chosen to ignore the truth about women and work. Women have babies. Women need to noursih and care for these babies. Here in the United States, our national culture in which we urge (read as pressure) one thing and legistale another, there is no winning.We have chosen to be the only industrialized nation not to mandate paid leave for mothers of newborns.

Here is an infographic from Huffington Post sure to turn your stomach.

So when Jessica Grose writes and publishes in New York Magazine she is ulitmatey attacked  (we are at war people!) for her views of how women are turning to other cultures for cues as to how to take-on the daily challenges of motherhood, even childbirth and pregnancy,  I have to blow my ref’s whistle (wars have referees and whistles, no?). Not because the techniques are shocking and extreme. That is another issue for another day. I demand we stop and pay attention. These cultures are ones in which women are mothers, that is what they do. These are not cultures where the juggle, balance and ultimate failure to do two incredibly difficult things well at once is the accepted standard. These mothers are proudly working in the home, supported by their villages and revered in their community as mothers. And if they are working outside of the home, it is with the proper support of their community and an understanding of the value of both roles. These are places where there is space made for being a mother. These are cultures where this is the job at hand – and it is honored as such. There is so much positive to take away,  appreciate and consider. But let’s be honest with each other — we are not set up to succeed here at home. And until we are — trying on another culture’s techniques while living in DC or Brooklyn  is much like playing dress-up in a closet full of beautiful Saris. It sure looks good…