Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Rambling from being sick- the internet can really make your head spin

I've had a bad cold- made worse by being pregnant, so for the past few days I've sat around on the couch reading lots and lots of parenting articles, blogs, and news items here on the interweb. Its like being pregnant again has put me at square one all over again like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day- reading again what happens each week of my pregnancy on the same website I read 3 years ago, wondering again about vaccines and all the new studies one way or the other, routine hospital procedures, and wondering what I want to wear when I give birth!- apparently you don't have to wear that hospital gown! you can wear something cuter- and I've spent waaay too much time surfing around looking for that perfect little black dress- that allows for skin to skin contact immediately after birth, intermittent fetal monitoring, and perhaps the perfect opening in the back for an epidural.* (Suggestions welcome I can't seem to find just what I want yet...)

But I guess I'm struck by how the same debates, the same things that confused and outraged me when Akiva was an infant, or made me laugh- are all so much completely the same, played out among just slightly younger people over and over again, similar news items, but now I've had days and days to be bombarded since I don't feel like really doing anything but sitting here in the couch.

There was a recent news article about a woman kicked out of a courtroom for breast feeding her sick baby who had an ear infection. Now I understand that breast feeding is a very loaded topic- people feel very strongly about it. Women who can't or who choose not to breast feed feel that they are made to feel like bad moms by women who are pro-breast feeders, and women who choose to breast feed are made to feel like they are doing the equivalent of taking a dump in front of everyone when they breast feed in public- (I was shocked how many replies to the story I read on Huffington Post included people equating this woman's breast feeding to someone pooping). So what is a new mom to do about this- that no matter what you do about feeling your baby, some one is probably going to try to make you feel bad.

I would love it if women could pop a bottle into their babe's mouths without those raised eye brows from the other moms at the playground- and pop a boob into a babe's mouth without someone else's raised eyebrows, what a nicer world this would be. People need to remember- you don't know why a woman is choosing to formula feed her baby, and so all that tsk-tsking you're doing inside is really based on nothing. And I have a burning question for those who are uncomfortable with a woman nursing a baby under a wrap in public. I'm asking this in all sincerity- what exactly is it about seeing a baby under a wrap close to its mother which is upsetting? Is it the idea the baby is eating? I would love some one to describe what goes within them when they see a woman with a baby who is nursing and it upsets them.

Now I also read another blog about parents judging other parents. Even though I've just laid out a plea to stop the judging, the internet has whirled me around and made me change my mind. When I hear about a child being abused, I judge and judge harshly. Like in this whole Judge John Adams video incident. When people see something happening to a child that they feel is wrong, its very hard not to look at the parent and judge. I judge this Judge, and I'm not sorry. In fact, I also judge those who don't judge this Judge, judging from support of hitting children that I have read in response to blogs about not hitting children. Being judgemental? Just now judged as just.

The internet is a wild place, full of people who in the cloak of cyber anonymity can be honest, and this honesty has been jarring to me sometimes. What do you guys think? Are you judgers? Do you follow lots of news about parenting? Do you know where I can get a great little number to wear when I give birth? Enlighten me, I'm a little all over the place after all this web surfing.

*my own opinion is that I would love to avoid an epidural, but since this birth will be a VBAC, I need to be prepared for things not going according to plan.


  1. I follow parenting websites much less now than when my son was a baby. (He is now four and a half.) The most discussions I get into now are for vaccines and evidence-based medicine.

    I do find my self judging quite a bit. That judge incident took me beyond judging, though. I found myself wanting to reach into the screen and dish a bit of that back on him. It was disturbing to me.

  2. Annie I miss your blogging.....hope the pregnancy is going well. Keep writing! XO

  3. Annie,
    I sat next to you at the after party for the premiere of "Our Town." I wanted to tell you that I did not recognize you from your "Mad Men" role (since you are so much prettier in person), and to compliment you on the fantastic part you played in my favorite series. You were very believable as the good friend and neighbor to January Jones. Of course, I am now anxious to view an episode of "Covert Affairs," which my friend from St. Louis watches regularly.

    I read some of your blog regarding child abuse and agree with you regarding taking a stand and "judging" someone who mistreats a child. I dedicated my career as a social worker to developing and implementing child abuse prevention programs. As a mandated reporter, I am legally obligated to report any incident of abuse that I witness or any child's disclosure of abuse. Over the course of my career, I have reported numerous incidents, making a difference in childrens' lives. If you ever need some advice regarding how to teach your children how to prevent abuse, please contact me. I am so pleased to have met you and hope to hear from you or run into you sometime in the future. I want to wish you the best of luck with your second child. My two children have given me so much happiness and love. It is not easy being a parent, but it is worth it!


  4. I just stumbled upon your blog, but I had to remark about a conversation I had with a friend's husband. I thought he was kind of a jerk, and didn't know why she was married to him...but what can I say? She and I both had small babies, and we were out somewhere at some restaurant I think. Anyway, her baby got hungry and she picked up and went out to her car (in August in the heat) to nurse him. I asked her husband why, since she had a cover, she didn't nurse her baby where she was instead of out in her car, where she STILL used her cover.

    He said "I don't like her to in public." When I asked why, since she had a cover and was covered, he said "because she's basically naked under there."

    I couldn't believe how stupid that sounded. I responded "well, I'm naked under my clothes, what's your point?"

    So really, I think it's just the idea of a woman undoing her shirt and pulling her breast out, EVEN IF THEY CAN'T SEE IT, that makes them upset.

    And when it comes to child abuse....yes, judgments like that are fair and need to be made. How a baby is fed isn't actually harming the child, so there's no reason to get judgmental, but when a child IS being harmed, it's a totally different story.