Author Topic: In the New Yorker...  (Read 2193023 times)

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3430 on: October 08, 2023, 08:36:26 pm »
I haven't been getting the latest issues because of a subscription glitch but I just went online and read it. I think it may be a helpful article for some people. "Mom Rage" has been around probably as long as there have been moms. It is really only in the past couple of generations that moms have been able to have the expectation that they could actually have some leisure or discretionary time. Before modern times, "mom rage" would more typically be related to feelings of having your children taken away from you, or killed or abused, or having to neglect your children in order to be in service for other wealthier families. Or any kind of injustice or twist of fate.

I don't recall experiencing "mom rage" myself, primarily because I almost didn't have the chance to be a mom at all. My first child was born when I was 36 and my second when I was 40. I was just grateful to be able to have the experience. I experienced disappointment with my husband because he dragged us away from our beloved Denver to Detroit so he could take a high-paying job with lots of power, travel, staff, and budget and wouldn't show up after work until late in the evening and then got himself fired for double dipping on his expense account. But my reaction showed up as, what my therapist described as despondency rather than rage.

Being a mom is very complicated and I admire the book author for tackling it. I'm sure it would be helpful to some people. I could comment on almost every paragraph in the article, but I think this is enough for now.
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Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3431 on: October 09, 2023, 08:07:47 am »
Thanks for sharing your thoughts, FRiend!

(I hope your subscription glitch gets taken care of soon. That's a GDB of a situation.  >:( )

(It's been so long I don't remember the exact quotation.  :( )
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3432 on: October 09, 2023, 12:35:16 pm »
(I hope your subscription glitch gets taken care of soon. That's a GDB of a situation.  >:( )

(It's been so long I don't remember the exact quotation.  :( )

I think it's GDBoaUS ...an unsatisfactory situation.

This happens to me every year at this time. They automatically renew my subscription but I still have to pay for it before they send me an issue.

See attached for what I think is a very good description of motherhood.
"chewing gum and duct tape"

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3433 on: October 09, 2023, 01:41:10 pm »
So, Bettermost moms, did you read the article about Mom rage (Sept. 25)? What did you think of it?

Ambivalent. It sounds like the book is a bit overwritten, too quick to trot out words like white supremacist patriarchy, perhaps its points aren't well-enough supported and the fact that her son has conditions she hadn't mentioned earlier -- that would make her experience different from that of other moms -- is a bit problematic. Plus, I remember reading an article in The New York Times in 2000 or 2001 in which the writer announced it had now become OK for moms to complain about motherhood. And I've seen many many books on the subject since then, including the one I was writing.

Mine was more about the demands of "motherhood culture" than the actual performance of "parenting." That's why I think the writer of the article is nevertheless wrong. She's totally dismissive of almost every point the book author makes -- yet I agreed with everything she quoted the author saying (if not always her ways of saying it).

I had two unusually rambunctious sons, including one diagnosed with oppositional defiance disorder, which probably isn't as big a deal as what the author's son had but still makes things harder. But the common expectation that it's mothers' role to do almost everything childcare related, pretty much letting fathers off the hook but not valuing the caregiving work with anything but phony pedestal-placing, scolding them if they don't live up to some imaginary image, and not really letting them complain much despite the New York Times' announcement that it was now OK.

So I actually really relate to the book author. The article writer, on the other hand, I kept thinking must not have any kids -- her response echoed what I've heard from people without kids. But at one point she briefly mentions her own, so I decided she must just have had a really different experience.


Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3434 on: October 09, 2023, 01:52:55 pm »
It is really only in the past couple of generations that moms have been able to have the expectation that they could actually have some leisure or discretionary time.

Dads have way more, though. If you look at the BLS American Time Use Survey stats, mothers spend about 50% more hours than fathers doing unpaid labor, and the reverse is true for dads doing paid work. So they work the same amount, but one of them gets paid. I seem to remember dads having more leisure, too, but I'm not sure what mothers did to balance that out.

Quote
Before modern times, "mom rage" would more typically be related to feelings of having your children taken away from you, or killed or abused, or having to neglect your children in order to be in service for other wealthier families. Or any kind of injustice or twist of fate.

True, but it might be both. Louisa May Alcott lived in relatively modern times, and in Greta Gerwig's adaptation of Little Women, the mother says, "I'm angry every day of my life." Of course, she seemed to have a no-good husband who ditched the family while he went off to do whatever it was he did.

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My first child was born when I was 36 and my second when I was 40.

I was one week short of 37 with my first and 38 1/2 with my second.

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I'm sure it would be helpful to some people. I could comment on almost every paragraph in the article, but I think this is enough for now.

I think the book could be helpful to people, too. I found books like that helpful, such as Rachel Cusk's A Life's Work or Ayelet Waldman's Bad Mother.


Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3435 on: October 09, 2023, 03:57:35 pm »
Louisa May Alcott lived in relatively modern times, and in Greta Gerwig's adaptation of Little Women, the mother says, "I'm angry every day of my life." Of course, she seemed to have a no-good husband who ditched the family while he went off to do whatever it was he did.

As I recall, he was a chaplain on the front lines of the Civil War and the only way he got to come home was because he was wounded. Marmie had to drop everything and go tend to him in the hospital because there were no nurses available. So I can understand why she was angry. And those lectures about the dangers of wearing corsets!

Thanks for telling us about how the NYT announced that it was all right to complain about motherhood. I missed that...too busy parenting to read the NYT! I admire anyone who can write about parenting when they're in the throes of it. I think I had "mommy brain fog" for years!
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Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3436 on: October 09, 2023, 04:07:58 pm »
So I actually really relate to the book author. The article writer, on the other hand, I kept thinking must not have any kids -- her response echoed what I've heard from people without kids. But at one point she briefly mentions her own, so I decided she must just have had a really different experience.

To use a phrase that's overused, in my opinion (to the point I'm sick of it) ... "Thanks for sharing."

No, I do appreciate the input.

Re: oppositional defiant disorder: Everything is a disorder today. No one has alcoholism anymore; they have alcohol use disorder. Smoke too much weed? You're not a pothead, you have cannabis use disorder. New mothers are no longer subject to postpartum depression; now they may suffer from major depressive disorder with peripartum onset. The list goes on--this from the organization that once characterized homosexuality as a ... disorder.

The word woke comes to mind. ...
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3437 on: October 09, 2023, 07:35:39 pm »
What a coincidence--today Claudia Goldin won the Nobel Prize in economics for her work on women in the workplace.
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Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3438 on: October 09, 2023, 09:54:50 pm »
Re: oppositional defiant disorder: Everything is a disorder today. No one has alcoholism anymore; they have alcohol use disorder. Smoke too much weed? You're not a pothead, you have cannabis use disorder. New mothers are no longer subject to postpartum depression; now they may suffer from major depressive disorder with peripartum onset. The list goes on--this from the organization that once characterized homosexuality as a ... disorder.

I never called it that when my son was young. I just thought that was a fancy label for difficult. Not so much woke, but a way to turn it into a disorder that benefits from "therapy." So that much more $ for the psychologists who come up with those classifications in the DSM.

Years later, though, when I've looked into this on more websites and Facebook groups, I've begun to think there's more to it. ODD is said to have some weird little traits like kids speaking gibberish, which my son did a lot (he could speak perfectly fine English, he just liked to slip into gibberish now and then), that it's related to OCD, which my son had a touch of and is elsewhere in the family, which is related to Tourette's, which nobody in the family has to my knowledge but ever so slightly resembles speaking gibberish.


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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #3439 on: October 19, 2023, 01:15:13 pm »
I finally am back to receiving my print issues and I see I missed an article about pockets. One person wrote in about how she strips the pockets off her clothes and replaces them with good deep ones.
"chewing gum and duct tape"