The “mommy wars” are waged over what are actually quite important societal and personal issues, which merit ongoing discussion and debate.
Take breastfeeding, for example, the A-bomb of the “mommy wars.” Whether to breastfeed, where, and for how long are not merely personal issues. Breastfeeding has implications for children’s health, women’s health, tax policy, city laws, and workplace policy, not to mention fundamental rights and freedoms.
Consider also Pinterest, a new front in the “mommy wars.” Pinterest is the latest form of social media, where users can create virtual pinboards on topics ranging from kids’ birthday party ideas to recipes to home décor inspirations. Pinterest links people through shared tastes, but it can also raise inner doubts about maternal adequacy.
The debate isn’t simply about “screen time” that’s diverted from hands-on parenting, or how distracted mothers should be with their kids. Decisions about whether to use Pinterest, or any social media for that matter, for how long, and for what purposes determine how mothers – and all of us – use our most precious resources: time and money. Spending time on Pinterest in particular also shapes our desires and wants and can influence the expectations of our children.
If the mommy wars are avoided, then so is discussion of these public issues.