I guess it's only 2011 at the top of
Publish date:
August 26, 2011
career, bullshit, patriarchy, bad mothers

We're still asking this question?

Note: I am a newish Chrome user, and I'm going to change my homepage to something less craptacular.

But people are for real wringing their hands over "selfish" mothers who work? In this economy? With the drug shortages and the hurricane right there on the same page?

We have a lot of kids to actually worry about. In the U.S., 31 million kids live in poverty.

If you click through, which I did only half-assedly (because I am a horrible, selfish mom who brought admin work home from the office so that I could keep my job and our health care access and avoid foreclosure, and I need to go work on it), you get a webisode of Soleil Moon Frye discussing an article which criticizes "moms who work for non-financial reasons."

I guess by articulating my surprise that someone, anyone is still beating the strawman of "moms who work for non-financial reasons," I am compounding the problem. And for all I know, Soleil Moon Frye throws it down to silence the issue forever in her video, which I am probably not going to actually watch.

But in its crappy framing of the issue, MSN regurgitates the same histrionic "What about the children?" bullshit I've been hearing about middle-class "working moms" with pantsuits and briefcases and no maternal instinct since I was little.

All my life I've heard the group "working mothers" conflated with some chimerical woman who is adequately paid-for but insists on taking up space in public just because she wants to, which completely erases the reality that people work to live, and some of those people are mothers. (It also erases the reality that anyone can work for whatever reason she or he chooses.)

And I'll be 39 this week. In other words, this is not a real thing, and it is not news.

There's even a poll straight out of a Ladies' Home Journal from the doctor's office waiting room in 1984.

Did we time-warp back to the Reagan years or something? Fortunately, 100% of respondents had chosen the middle answer when I viewed the results.