I started this blog back in November 2005 with the hopes of sharing the "other" side of motherhood. I knew my experiences weren't necessarily new or even unique really, but they were definitely ones that I hadn't seen anyone else discussing in my own sheltered existence in rural Mississippi. But I figured that if I could reach even just one mom who was sitting, dazed and confused in her milk-stained glider like the wind had just been kicked out of her by a 4 week old and make her laugh, all this madness I called "new motherhood" would have been worth more than what was just a rite of passage.
But the lines between this brutally honest, uncensored writing and the "bad mommy" syndrome have been blurred. I suppose a mom who curses on her blog about Crocs, kid leashes, and her in-laws might be considered "bad" based on the societal stereotypes that have been forced down our throats for hundreds of years.
However, if you read carefully, even blogs like "Her Bad Mother," there is not actual bad mothering happening. On the contrary, this writing is our reaction to the mothering standard, our way of kicking the pressure of "being good" in the nuts. It's how we maintain our sanity in an otherwise challenging existence.
But unlike this whole "I'm wasted and watching Dora with my kids" movement, that one could speculate is actually bad, we're not really bad at all.
Not surprisingly, the opportunities that are afforded to the tamer folks - those who politely use asterisks in their curse words or just avoid them altogether - are not as frequent. And yet, because a mom curses on her blog does that mean she can't adequately represent a brand.
Don't moms sometimes lose their shit?
And if so, can her word then not be trusted? Is her approval not worthy of some sort of seal?
Some companies don't seem to think so. Even some traditional companies are attempting to jump on the float, but like Motrin Moms, they do so with little success. But these rumblings are hopeful and as we tell and publish our sometimes harsh stories of motherhood, that we can change the image of what a mother is. Not just to open up opportunities for ourselves, but to pave the way for our daughters and our sons.
I'll be moderating a panel on this very topic tomorrow at Mom 2.0 Summit and I'd love to know your thoughts. Do you think an inaccurate view of mothers is perpetuated? What would tell marketers and companies looking to reach moms?