For years, Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi has been getting criticized six ways to Sunday for her outrageous ways on Jersey Shore: drama, drinking, fights, men. Viewers and tabloids wondered if she’d ever tame her bad-girl ways.
Then Snooki discovered she was pregnant, and that prompted her to clean up her act, pronto. She got engaged to boyfriend Jionni LaValle, switched from wine to milk and traded her late nights for relaxing early evenings.
And guess what?
…People are still getting on her case.
Her Twitter account has snarky messages from followers about her shoes and hair extensions. Some even say she’s losing her diva edge. One particularly venomous blog post attacked her for “exploiting” her baby by designing a line of children’s slippers, and wondered whether the child would be born addicted. “Children [sic] Services should be there to catch the baby as soon as Snooki pops it out,” said the writer.
This kind of cyberbullying among moms isn’t limited to Snooki – lots of other famous mothers are subjected to sarcasm, nastiness and hate from people who assume they know better – and forget that these women have feelings, problems of their own and children who may wonder why anyone would say anything bad about Mommy.
Sadly, the problem isn’t even limited to celebrity mothers. Regular moms like you and me get it all the time. If you doubt it, just put up a blog post about why you don’t want to breastfeed or why you let your kids walk alone to the store two blocks away. You’ll be inundated with angry comments faster than you can say “Dora the Explorer.” I once wrote a humor piece about why children shouldn’t watch such classic holiday shows as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. From the vitriolic response I got, you’d have thought I had plugged Santa with a .38 special. (Some readers said that the article wasn’t even funny. Now that hurt.)
That’s why I applaud today’s Momcrunch column about The Mom Pledge, a movement launched by a mother who wants to end cyberbullying between moms. The Internet, she says, should be a forum for healthy, respectful dialogue by women who support each other and understand that every mother has to make the choices that work for her.
I also stand with my fellow Famecrawler bloggers like Joanna Mazewski and Monica Bielanko, who understand that writing about celebrity parents doesn’t have to mean disrespecting them. We can show concern without harsh criticism, humor without condescension and even offer support and admiration.
So take a minute to join The Mom Pledge and do your part to make the cyberworld a safer, happier and more supportive place to be.
You can start by looking at these well-known women and remembering that they’re mothers (or would-be moms), too. Underneath the glamor and designer fashions, they have the same worries and hopes for their children as we do.
And next time you’re tempted to hate on Snooki’s shoes, the Duggars‘ large family or Jessica Simpson‘s weight, ask yourself, “Is this something I’d want someone to say about me?”
[Photos: via PacificCoastNews, Twitter]
Read more of Shana’s writing at Momsperiments.
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