The comments section makes interesting reading. Including one that says, by way of criticism: “Their activities seem to have little to do with motherhood, and yet still they feel it necessary to use ‘mummy’.”
To me that’s not criticism. Just because I am a female parent – therefore mummy – doesn’t mean I stop doing, and writing about, things that have little to do with motherhood.
Cybermummy did provide a few views about motherhood that gave me pause for thought.
Sarah Brown, wife of former PM Gordon, talked about her work with the White Ribbon Alliance for Save Motherhood. She said: “When you save a mother, you save a community.”
Then I met a blogger over coffee and buns. She told me she had wanted to be a mother but dreaded how it would make her feel. She believed mothers just disappear in society. They have no fun, nothing intelligent to say and are subsumed. She confessed that blogging brought her closer to mums she felt akin to “the others I meet at nursery, I just don’t have anything to say to”.
Then Dr Ellie Lee, an academic from the University of Kent who studies parenting culture among other things talked about “the rise of intensive parenting”. She said – although I will verify this, and quite probably write about it, later – that more and more time is spent “parenting” these days, and theories and schools of thought jostle for space, time and money. How we “parent” (when did that become a verb) is a cultural choice. I wonder if we could choose to stop parenting at all and just love our kids.
Moving on and needing some Kleenex. Sian To, Rosie Scribble and Liz Scarff from Save the Children. Talked affectingly about their trips to developing countries Cameroon and Bangladesh to visit mothers and families there. Again and again they said: “These women were mums just like us.”