As this week's edition of Time magazine seems to have produced the cover seen round the world I'm assuming you've seen it. But if not, I've posted it here because I can't get enough. No one can get enough, and commentary is rampant.
There is a lot to think about here. And my basic take is a very non-sensational: I don't really care.
That is, I don't really care about extended breastfeeding or attachment parenting or any of it, as long as parents are taking good care of our children. As long as we all are taking good care of all children.
My husband and I have never sat down and discussed a parenting philosophy, per se. I don't know if this is a good or a bad thing, or if it is common or rare. For us, it has worked. We both liked the way we were raised by our own parents, and I think we've come to a natural understanding, based on our backgrounds, about how we will raise our daughter and son.
Of course we discuss specifics. When my three-and-a-half-year-old was lying prostrate on the floor the other morning before school, her voice lost in the midst of hiccups and sobs as she described, wiping the tears away, the situation at hand - namely, that the dog was looking at her banana, my husband said, "I mean, are we doing something wrong in raising her?"
It's funny, sure, but moments like this lead us to solid conversations about parental issues. Like how to handle whining and tantrums. We do what feels right and effective for our family. In breastfeeding my children, I've done the same: what's felt right for me and them.
I think the cover of Time is provocative, definitely, and although it's got people talking (yelling, too) and I think conversation-starters are always important, I'm not sure I think it's provocative in a good way. The woman on the cover, Jamie Lynne Grumet, who is breastfeeding her three-year-old son, is very pretty. And the story inside is about Dr. Bill Sears and his philosophies on attachment parenting. And, um, Dr. Sears doesn't look like that.
But I'm going to stop with my own thoughts. Because the wonderful Lisa Belkin has written an essay for The Huffington Post titled "No. I Am Not Mom Enough," in response to the Time cover and story. It's a very brief, elegant assessment of the Time cover and the response to it, it's better than anything I could say about all the feelings involved and I couldn't agree with her more.
You can read Belkin's piece here.
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