January Jones Is A Parenting Role Model

Why voluntary (and really all) single motherhood is the last feminist frontier.
Publish date:
April 29, 2011
motherhood, family drama, January Jones

Although JJ plays a beautiful but tortured Stepford Wife on “Mad Men,” in real life, she's well on her way to becoming a feminist icon.

When I found out she was pregnant and “really looking forward to this new chapter in her life as a single mom,” as her rep put it, I let out a little “I think I love her” in my head. There goes another stunning celebrity, like Padma Lakshmi the year before her, saying “eff it” to the conventional husband-and-wife scenario and just forging ahead with the baby business on her own.

Now, of course, I don’t know the circumstances of 33-year-old January’s single mother-ness. There’s a lot of speculation that the father is Jason Sudeikis, whom she broke up with in, well, January. Maybe she had visions of settling down with him and things didn’t quite work out that way. But for her (and her rep) to embrace this version of S&M (Single and a Mother) does not go unnoticed or unappreciated by this gal.

A few years ago, as I approached my thirties, I loved boys but hated dating and knew only one thing for sure: I wanted a kid someday and wasn’t going to go on 10,361 bad dates to get there. I wondered how us women had come so far since the 70s, accomplishing so much on our own, but when it came to going solo on the parenting front, suddenly they were traditionalists.

"It's just not how things are done,"my friends told me. They wanted to wait for the right man. I realized that what I was encountering, ladies and gentlemen, was the possibly last frontier of feminism.

Of course, kids are expensive. Really expensive. And if you’re raising them in New York or L.A., they actually cost a small fortune. But assuming a woman is financially stable, as so many women -- especially those who don’t have time or patience to date a lot -- are, then why not proceed with the village (of grandparents and friends and guncles) Hillary Clinton told us it takes to raise a child?

Proceed and seek happiness, I say. Make that baby your biological clock insists you eventually have -- if you want one -- and maybe the right man will come along. Or maybe he won’t -- but isn’t that the risk we always take anyway?