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Where have all the mothers gone?

and aunts and sisters and cousins and grandma's...

First off, let me admit that I have an addiction-and it's to Mommy Crack, AKA A Baby Story. It's a problem, I know, but it's one of the few ways I "bond" with being a woman. It affirms for me the sense that all around the world, other women are doing what I did for the first time a little over 3 years ago. It reminds me that I do belong to "Club Mom". And somedays I like that.

This morning, in an effort to stymie the Curious George obsession (timeshifting and a smart three year old do NOT a happy mom make) I put "Bringing Home Baby" on as I clean, since she likes to watch the babies, and reads after she gets bored.

I've always liked the idea of a show really showing how "bad" it can get the first little while home. But it saddens me that we need it-that we no longer have other women in our lives to help us, to prepare us for that female only rite of passage-labour and delivery. We don't have women to pass along breastfeeding knowledge, or how to soothe a baby, or the best way to burp. We have books, babycenter and TLC. Part of me is always screaming, "What have I lost, what have WE lost?"

I was so supremely lost when I had Vivian. But I read and read until I felt comfortable, because that's what I do. I study situations, I make logical decisions based on the knowledge given me. It's usually a good way to work.

But I didn't have anyone to show me how to LOVE her, how to BE her mother. I had no role models, no women around me to really emulate. I had me, and the four walls of my house. It was terrible.

And of course the shows on TLC are most certainly NOT representative of every woman. I never see me there, I rarely see single women, don't recall any lesbian couples delivering. Just usually a nice middle to upper class couple delivering their perfect baby. No real problems (unless you consider most episodes ending in C-Sections a problem). Sometimes I wanted a mother with PPD who couldn't get the baby to latch to come on. Or on BHB, a mother going nuts because her inlaws decide they MUST go visit relatives 2 hours away 2 weeks after giving birth, while in the throes of PPD. Or showing at any time a new mom, scared, isolated and alone. Showing reality, or the reality that I have experienced, would be welcome.

I wish that somehow would could begin to replicate the "village raising a child" that once was. And in some small part, the internet has been that for me. I've made some friends, and received oodles of support over the past year that has really helped me feel less alone. But I wish that village was here with me, instead of on the TV or internet. Sometimes, you just want someone to make you a cup of tea.

So to my village, here's my cup raised, a steaming hot cup of Earl Grey, thanking you. I realized this morning that my village exists, even if it's not here with me.

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Well here, here. Mine's a cup of Sumatra, extra bold.

I remember seeing one, ONE episode like that. It was on one of the baby shows, I can't remeber which, and she was just sitting there in her bra, frustrated and trying to get the baby to latch. I felt for her. When I had PPD with my first, no one understood, my mom even told me to "snap out of it" and that I should be happy I had a healthy baby-I had nothing to be sad about. I think our society needs to "snap out of it" and get to showing the other side of what new motherhood is like. It's may not be pretty, but it's real.

There's a real lack of honesty in the popular portrayal of mothers. I think as Generation X has become parents, things have gotten better but there's still a long way to go.

I don't think there are episodes showing the worst because no one in that situation is going to let in the cameras! I know I sure wouldn't have.

I often find myself yelling, "Where is my village, damn it?!" LOL

I couldn't agree more. I'd be climbing the walls some days if it weren't for the net.

I have all kinds of theories about the "village" and its demise but not now. I'm going to take a nap instead.

The only mother I had around me with my first was my mother-in-law. She literally screamed at me at a family party in front of everyone about my son's diaper rash. So yeah, me too. The internet became my village.

May I join your village? I am but an hour away from you and a huge fan of sarcasm.

huh. And here I thought I was the only one feeling so alone.

I feel better all over again knowing that y'all feel the same way sometimes. :)

And lala-I added you to my feeds-I take forever and a day to update my links-where are you? Lucky you, not in Moncton I presume (I'm not from here-I'm one of those horrid people from Ontario) :) But you can join my village..

If you leave soon, you could be here in time for tea after I drop The Maniac off at nursery school tomorrow. :)

I was the first in my circle of friends (most of them now MIA) to have a child. It was a really, rough lonely adjustment. I was lucky that an expeirnced mom from a bulliten board lived in the same general area, and we became friends. (Lots in common, would have hit it off under other circumstances.) Talking with her saved me in those early months. She invited me to join her on Saturday once a month, and just listened to me when I had to bitch about how difficult everything was.

I've made it a point to reach out to new moms, because I know how crappy , confusing and isolating it can be.

And yeah....I'm also really grateful for the internet, annoying and fucked up as it can be at times.

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