All hail my family bed. No matter what that so called feminist Erica Jong says.
Last November, just when our first was about to turn 1 and had been ousted from our communal slumber, she wrote a condescending albeit witty piece about those darned attachment parents. The internets went kaboom and so began yet another reason for the mommy-wars. EJ made some very good points. Lost in her added bashing and superficial wanking.
This seems to be her particular style. As seen with her more recent daughter-slagging, (hers) article. Just when she’s about to make a good point, kerplunk. Out goes the baby with the bath-water. I mean, being attached to your baby/child?! How over-the-top! Not to mention self-sacrificing.
Oh, but wait.
Isn’t that what mother-hood is all about?
Of course there are extremes. Following any one theory has never worked well for me, because, well, duh…everyone is different. You cant just apply a bullet pointed list of methods to every parent and child in the human race and expect them to work. Robots we aren’t. Trying to live up to such ideals only paves the guilt laden highway, bumper to bumper with stress and mash-ups. Not to mention how annoying and obnoxious you become to the rest of society.
So. Although I get where EJ is coming from, she goes over-board.
We do what feels good, feels right. Based on instinct. What works for us organically, naturally. Sometimes by trial and error, sometimes out of rude ole’ realism. No matter how much we may want it to work out the opposite way.
Being pigeon-holed because some attachment styles, (such as co-sleeping) work(ed) for us? Yawn. My knickers aren’t in a knot over it. So goes the world. We judge, we stereo-type, we bash, we all think our way is better than the next. That is not to say I won’t add my two cents to the uproar. I loves me a good party.
However. Don’t go telling me I’m a sexless, over-worked fadster because hold my baby close in a wrap, cloth diaper and make home-made baby food. It’s not comely to talk about my lady-garden and her juicy fruit that way. Her and I? We’re thick as thieves. Keeping the central fire burning with my man is quite possible amidst the ruckus.
What helps? My toddler goes to daycare part-time. Sometimes he ends up in disposable dipes and eats french-fries. I don’t breast-feed Abigail exclusively – I pump and let daddy nourish Lil’ Abner up on occasion. We only co-slept with Wyndham till he was a year, because that’s what worked best for all of us. Most likely we will do the same with Abby. It sure is vunderbar at the moment. Dream-nursing, hello my friend.
EJ is the most contradictory feminist I know. It’s in how in the same breath; she can advocate on behalf of free sex, open marriages, the importance sexual passion (agreed!) to then surmise that attachment mothers don’t have the time for any of that or don’t want/desire it. How is it feminist to say how women should tread through motherhood, our constantly evolving lives?
Maybe it’s just the circle’s I run in, but I have yet to meet the throngs of women EJ finds to be sexless because they love motherhood and are monogamous.
Not all mothers are monogamous or are in a relationship. But they still have sex and are great mothers. Some aren’t.
Some mothers are in a monogamous relationship, co-sleep with their kids and LOVE to get it on. In other places than the bed. Sometimes in the bed when the baby/kid(s) aren’t there. Not that complicated. Some don’t. (I guess? Although, dang. That’s got to suck).
Many mothers, immediately after childbirth and in the post-partum months – have no desire to have sex. Completely normal and does not make them a prude. Thankfully, (hopefully) that desire comes back.
Sometimes, we’re too bloody busy to even think about the joys of sex all the time, never mind act on those back-burner thoughts. Also? When we make love, it’s in vast, wonderful ways. The actual deed? All the better for the yearning.
So many scenarios. Such a big blogosphere I’ll not hog. Point is, yes, as EJ stated, ‘generalizing about cultural trends is tricky.’
Especially regarding mothers, their fire and passion, their sex lives. Added feminism and parenting techniques. A rather a egotistical under-taking in fact.
Heck. Here I am, barely 4 weeks after giving birth and I’m going on about the whack world of sex. Must mean I’m hankering for it. Ladies, mamas, oh go on. We’re some of the randiest humanoids around. Aren’t we?
Looking for a good chuckle? Check out these nifty ideas on how to pamper yourself postpartum on Baby’s First Year!