This Carnival is dedicated to empowering ALL parents who practice and promote and peaceful, loving, attachment parenting philosophy. We have asked other parents to help us show the critics and the naysayers that attachment parenting is beautiful, uplifting, and unbelievably beneficial and NORMAL!
In addition to the Carnival, Joni from Tales of a Kitchen Witch and Jennifer from True Confessions of a Real Mommy are co-hosting a Linky Party. Please stop by either blog to share any of your posts on the topic.
Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants. Post topics are wide and varied, and every one is worth a read.
When I first saw the recent Time Magazine cover featuring a mother nursing her 3 year old son standing on a chair, this was my reaction: “Cool, a mom nursing a 3 year old. Wow, hope he doesn’t fall off the chair. Ouch!” And I went along with my busy life.
However, there has been a huge uproar over the picture, the title “Are You Mom Enough?” and the article. I tried to avoid the hubbub since I have other things to worry about and I’m pretty secure in the parenting style I choose. I identify with Attachment Parenting, choosing to respond to my child’s needs, respect him, practice gentle discipline, nurture a strong attachment in our family, cosleep and breastfeed. But I didn’t set out to meet some extreme goal. It’s what works for us, so we do it.
It seems that this article has only served to fuel the “Mommy Wars,” which of course come in many forms: working moms vs. at-home moms, breast vs. bottle, crib vs. family bed and so on. The discussion has been about whether Attachment Parenting is extreme, or too demanding, or too difficult, or even oppressing. I don’t find it to be any of those things. In fact, I make the choices I do because they’re easier for me. Would I rather get up in the middle of the night to fix a bottle or stay in bed and nurse? Would I rather drag myself back and forth to a crib in a different room or just keep my baby next to me? Do I want to impose strict rules and schedules, or just follow the natural rhythm of my baby? I like to follow the path of least resistance, and for us that seems to be Attachment Parenting. I would even argue that caring for my child is the least oppressing part of my day. I feel much more oppressed when I have to do laundry or dishes. While parenting of any style can be exhausting, it can also be calming, relaxing, comforting and wonderful. Typing this on my laptop while snuggled up next to my sleeping child is pretty darn nice.
When I do look at the coverage of the Time article and moms arguing with each other about their parenting choices, it’s really aggravating. Why are we arguing? Why do we care how other moms choose to parent their children? Are there not many paths we can choose when caring for a child? I think we’re wasting our time squabbling with each other when we could join forces and put all of this energy to good use.
Let’s stop fighting with each other and start fighting alongside each other. I challenge each mom to figure out what really matters to her and to fight for it. Let’s fight for paid maternity leave for moms who want to stay home with their children, and for quality childcare for moms who choose to go back to work. Let’s fight for healthcare so that each mother and child has the best possible chance at health. Let’s fight to get rid of toxins that are making our children and us sick. Let’s fight for healthy food for all children. Let’s fight for real issues that will improve our lives and the lives of our families.
Need some inspiration? Recently, the National Stroller Brigade, organized by Safer Chemicals Healthy Families, brought together over 200 moms in Washington, DC, to fight for common sense limits on unhealthy chemicals. My Green Moms Carnival friends Lori Alper, Diane MacEachern and Micaela Preston were there.
The Moms Clean Air Force was also at the capitol, fighting for limits on carbon pollution. My fellow MCAF blogger Molly Rauch testified and delivered a petition with over 8,000 signatures and comments. I have been writing for Moms Clean Air Force since the beginning, and it was such a thrill to think that I had played a role in helping to get the new Mercury and Air Toxics rule passed. I continue to be incredibly proud of the work that MCAF does.
The next time you see a “Mommy Wars” type argument going on, I challenge you not to engage in the argument and instead do something that really matters to you. If you’re going to fight, make it a worthwhile fight.
Thank you for visiting the I Am Mom! Enough! Carnival hosted by hosted by Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama and Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children.
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants and check out previous posts at the linky party hosted by Joni from Tales of a Kitchen Witch and Jennifer from True Confessions of a Real Mommy:
(This list will be live and updated by afternoon May 28 with all the carnival links.)
- The High Cost of High Expectations JeninCanada at Fat and Not Afraid shares what it’s like to NOT feel ‘mom enough’ and wanting to always do better for herself and family.
- TIME to Be You! — Becky at Old New Legacy encourages everyone to be true to themselves and live their core values.
- There Is No Universal Truth When It Comes To Parenting — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama discusses how parenting looks around the world and why there is no universal parenting philosophy.
- Attachment Parenting Assumptions — ANonyMous at Radical Ramblings argues that attachment parenting is not just for the affluent middle-classes, and that as parents we all need to stop worrying about our differences and start supporting each other.
- Thoughts on Time Magazine, Supporting ALL Mamas, and Advocating for the Motherless — Time Magazine led That Mama Gretchen to think about her calling as a mother and how adoption will play an important role in growing her family.
- Attachment Parenting: the Renewed Face of Feminism — Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children embraces her inner feminist as she examines how the principles of attachment parenting support the equal treatment of all.
- We ALL Are Mom Enough — Amy W. of Amy Willa: Me, Mothering, and Making It All Work thinks that all mothers should walk together through parenthood and explores her feelings in prose.
- I Breastfeed My Toddler for the Nutritional Benefits — Christine at African Babies Don’t Cry shares why ‘extended’ breastfeeding is not extreme and how she is still nursing her toddler for the nutritional benefits.
- I Am Dad Enough! — Attachment parenting does not only have to be about moms; their partners are just as important. In Code Name: Mama’s family, Dionna’s husband, Tom, is papa enough for lots of things.
This post is also linked up to the Seasonal Celebration at the Natural Mothers Network!