Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Girl with Tape over Mouth

Apparently, mommy + blogging now = hate.

That's funny, because for me, mommy+blogging always meant "be at home for your child while doing something you love."

How silly of me to be out of the know.

Unless you're a blogger or heavy into the social networking thing, you may not know about the recent New York Times article that cast a negative light on mommy bloggers and stirred up a whole bunch of...well, you know.

So imagine my surprise when yesterday I found myself smack dab in the middle of all the mommy blogger hating, which was as much of a surprise as being in a Detroit Free Press article called World of sex, lies and mommy blogs.

When I spoke to Georgea Kovanis (the author of the article) a few weeks ago for an interview, I had no idea the slant of the article (she hadn't figured it out yet, she said).

After speaking with Kovanis at length about blogging and the need for women to lift each other up, I was shocked to be included in an article that perpetuated such negativity about mommy blogging. I felt that was only a very small part of what I was trying to convey about blogging, being a mom and being a woman.

And then the comments began.

There was an onslaught--mostly negative (go figure)--of comments about how "we" (especially those of us interviewed in the article) needed to (in no particular order):
  • Get a real job.
  • Lose weight.
  • Enjoy parenting.
  • Pay more attention to our kids.
  • Get a life.

And then it started to get really nasty. So I did what any self-preserving blogger would do: I stopped reading.

Look, everyone is entitled to their opinion (and mostly I don't care about them), but people, you just made my whole point about women not really supporting each other.

Each time I write a blog post, do I need to run through my qualifications--being college-educated, a director at a hospital at 25, a college instructor and academically published--and then list the number of hours I spend face time with my child before being worthy of blogging?

Did you know that, for many moms, blogs are their business (or an avenue to drive clients to their business)? Or, that many moms make major sacrifices and use blogging as a business so that they can be home with their children, as I covered in my recent Understanding the WAHM Evolution post. Or, that many WAHM and mom bloggers do spend most of their day with their kids and do the majority of their writing during nap times, school time, or at night, after everyone has gone to bed (and in lieu of any sort of social life)?

More importantly? Why do you even care?

And, why do we have to rip each other apart just to feel better about ourselves?

Thankfully, the awesome Melissa Ford had enough sense to realize that a well-rounded piece needed to follow negative campaigns. She promptly interviewed several of us and posted here and here.

It all boils down to this:

Mommy blogging is way more positive than negative. Yes, there are those who leave nasty comments and make a big stink to tell us we're not good moms whenever we post that we have a bad day and wish little Johnny would visit grandma until...college age. However, there are amazing moms blogging their every day lives...some to make money, some just to share their journey.

Many of us mom bloggers say things that others may not. If it gets a laugh, great. If it helps others realize they're not alone, even better.

What's wrong with that?

As I said to Melissa Ford yesterday:

I would like to live in a mommy world where we could discuss things reasonably and see other points of view instead of reverting to high school and going straight for the proverbial jugular. But I guess that only exists in the world of marshmallows, unicorns and rainbows. It sounds nice, though. I'd like to visit there sometime.


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