When Mommy Bloggers Fail, and Babble is just Bad

As a woman who happens to be a mother and also a blogger, I rarely refer to myself as a mom blogger and suggest if you want to stay on my good side you never refer to me as a Mom blogger either. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against so called mom bloggers, there are some good ones out there. Back in late 2004 when I found myself pregnant right before my son’s 13th birthday, it was sites like mothering, and many of the mom blogs that helped refreshed my memory on what pregnancy and babyhood would be like. Since when you find yourself pregnant when your only other child is entering his teen years, the reality is you need to relearn all that baby stuff over and boy did I have a lot to learn!

Pregnancy and motherhood was pretty simple back when I did it the first time in 1991-92, thankfully I did not have the internet telling what to do or not to do. All I had were a few books and second hand stories from other women who had survived the process. That said, knowledge is key and in 2004-05 it was the internet along with a persistent midwife that made me give breastfeeding a shot. As I have shared on this blog before, with my eldest there was no discussion of how he would be fed, he got Enfamil and survived but by 2004 I knew I had to make a decision. In the end I went from being a reluctant breast feeder to nursing my daughter three and a half years! Considering that as a whole Black women have lower rates than other races when it comes to breastfeeding I admit I take pride in that decision. I still smile when my now 6 year old looks back fondly on how wonderfully sweet my bickie milk was but at the same time am very firm when she asks is there anymore left. Sorry love, that train left the station.

While I won’t ever call myself a lactivist or any other type of activist on parenting issues instead saving my activism for the economic ignorance and disparities that exist in this country it does not mean I don’t get pissed off when it comes to certain issues. I must admit that the state of online parenting advice and so called mommy blogs disappoints me greatly. Now that the monetization of parenthood has started it seems that gone is the great advice of only a few short years ago. Instead we share our stories in hopes of earning the most page views since high page views and many followers on places like Twitter and Facebook often mean cold hard cash, which of course means we go for controversy. I realized that today as I ran across this piece on my twitter feed.

Sites like Babble seem designed to create controversy and are only one reason that I feel maybe it is time for mommy blogs to die. I know some of my readers will read this and seethe and that’s okay. But it seems almost irresponsible to promote ass-backwards views under the guise of sharing which is what that piece does, I am also tired of reading pieces written by women in most instances who have been parenting a hot minute trying to suggest they are authorities on parenting. Look, I have a kid in college and I will be the first to tell you I know jack shit, my six year old made sure of that. I am not saying you must have fully grown kids in order to try to give parenting advice but someone sharing their “should” on an issue when they really are not fully versed in a topic makes no sense. If you have been parenting a grand total of less than 5 years are you really an expert? Hell, you don’t even know yet if the choices you made while your snowflake was a baby really are going to have an impact on the kid, let the kid grow up before you start telling us how we should parent!

In the Babble piece we have the writer suggesting it’s easy to throw a towel over the kid so no one sees a boob while nursing…oh Mama! Wait until you hit that 12-13 month stage where they just pop off and want to show your boob to the world. Believe me, my daughter went through a phase where I knew if she needed to eat outside discretion was not going to happen. So that meant there were times my breasts were on display and ya know what? So what? Breasts are to feed babies and if anyone has an issue that’s their issue, not mine. I have an issue with an organization that markets itself as a place for a new generation playing into these same tired shaming thoughts when it comes to nursing. I just do.

So in the future I will make sure the next time a Babble link comes across my path to avoid it which is a shame since there are a couple of bloggers I enjoy that do write for them but as a whole, sorry Babble you are not a new generation of parents. Just more of the same old shit dressed up.

20 thoughts on “When Mommy Bloggers Fail, and Babble is just Bad

  1. The Babble post you refer to was incredibly misguided. I only hope that the author become a bit more flexible in her views after 6 months, a year, or more of breastfeeding.

  2. I was pregnant AND online in 1993. I miscarried my first child and then gave birth (with an online support network at my ready) in 1994. I have no other children – so I’ve not been part of the mommy blogging phenomena. Yikes. I think it would drive me crazy.

    Lately I’ve been wanting to share what it was like being online so early going through those kind of life changes.

    I guess that makes me a mommy blogger wannabe.

    I think it’s an important perspective. Just like you’ve shared.

    And towels over nature’s bountiful perfection? WTF??

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thanks for this post.

    “Breasts are to feed babies and if anyone has an issue that’s their issue, not mine. I have an issue with an organization that markets itself as a place for a new generation playing into these same tired shaming thoughts when it comes to nursing. I just do.”

    Well-said. Mommy/lady/baby-hate makes good money I guess.

  4. Well said! I am often annoyed when new parents or those with no children attempt to judge or try to give parenting advice. I also get infuriated by the stigma and taboo associated with women breastfeeding in public. Why do people get so offended? Get over it!

    Great post. 🙂

  5. Well said! I also found your blog through TFB … good stuff! I will be back for more.

    That babble article was a joke, and most of the commenters thought so too (a refreshing change from most comments I read). I always thought of mommy bloggers as women who post primarily about their kids and their lives and parenting blogs as the ones I read for advice.

  6. I never breastfed my daughter, but Babble (oh, Babble) is a hardcore offender of all things bullshit. If I was a new mom, I would lose my mind. First of all, Babble lacks diversity in all aspects. Secondly, they’re purposely controversial in a dangerous kind of way, thirdly: they’re like the Cosmo of Parenting.

    Like I said, I never breastfed, so I have absolutely no frame of reference except for the fact that I have a pair. I can see why breastfeeding moms are passionate and I would never, ever tell them to shaddup already. Posts like this say more about the person writing (and those choosing to publish) than the target of the attack. The last thing a BF mom should be worrying about is someone else.

    Just send tit shots over there. Lots of them.

  7. I came to you through TFB as well, and I’m so glad I did! All I have to say is AMEN, AMEN AMEN! I have a 2 1/2 year old and a 3-month old, and had never read Babble until I was pregnant w/ #2. I was horrified w/ the content over there! I’ll keep to the mommy bloggers whose advice I trust (like Ask Moxie) and avoid the rest.

    Well said!

  8. When I started reading the post you linked to, I was wondering why you had a problem with it. That is, until she started sounding more like a formula rep than a Breastfeeding mother. Her comments are exactly what new Breastfeeding moms don’t need to hear. As if women don’t have enough to worry about, now we have other women undermining our right to feed our babies! Show them boobies, as if you can see anything with those big baby noggins blocking them anyway, if people don’t like it I have a nursing cover they can put over their heads!

  9. Fabulous response to that post. With an 11 year old and a 7 month old, I can call myself an expert…in raising MY kids. And nobody else’s. Period.

  10. Thanks all for your kind words. Funny thing was I banged out this post while making dinner but was just super irritated by reading it. Breastfeeding moms face enough challenges without being slammed by one of our own.

  11. I don’t take any stand on breastfeeding. Do it or don’t–your choice and no one can say a word about it. I AM with you on your comment about Babble and its choice of bloggers. In one case, a mom with three children under 4 is, IMO, hardly in a position to give ANYONE advice. It’s way too soon to know if anything she advises will work for you–or even if it will end up working for HER. And as for the constant barrage of giveaways, advertisements and “reviews”, it seems like a version of “Mommy QVC”.

  12. Thank you for this great post! I have bookmarked your page 🙂 My daughter had latch issues for the first few weeks and even now I have to check her because sometimes she just latches to the wrong place, lol. Anyway, a cover just wasn’t going to work! She is 4.5 months old now and I pulls up the shirt, pull down the nursing tank and show less skin than I did on my first date with my husband!! I also can only tell people what has worked, so far, with me. I hope it helps them too, but in the end each mom and experience is different. You are right – I am in no way a parenting expert. I can only pray that the choices I am making now for my daughter are the right ones. And if they aren’t she will still probably turn out fine!

    I love your ‘voice’ and appreciate you speaking up. You go mama! 🙂

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