Mommy blogging has been getting kicked around quite a lot these days.
Some people seem to think writing about your kid, family or domestic life for fun or money is some sort of offensive hobby.
Critics in this week's New York Times story say mom bloggers are either raging narcissists, or corporate shills willing to reveal their family's most intimate secrets for free detergent samples.
But what really came first, the kid or the underlying desire to blog?
Most of us could just as easily be doggy bloggers, or wine bloggers, or I-watch-a-lot-of-BBC-America bloggers if there was a market for it. (Note to self: pitch Boston.com on a I-watch-a-lot-of-BBC-America blog!)
So why is it when daddy bloggers come out to play in our sandbox -- and they are popping up everywhere these days -- they are heralded as serious essayists, modern-day J.D. Salingers with a domestic twist?
Now these guys are awfully likable. They are total mensches -- family men, real partners in kid-raising and homemaking. That's so cool, I probably shouldn't make fun of them.
But they make it so easy! Like the other day, when in the adrenaline-fueled afterglow of the arrival of his second son, Josh Tyson of The Kids Are Watching writes an ode to his wife's private parts on the Mother of all Mommy Blogs, Lisa Belkin's The Motherlode.
Josh points out how superior his wife is for refusing an epidural during labor, unlike all the other weakling ladies in the maternity ward that day.
(Poor Josh was probably not aware what a sore spot the drugs vs. natural debate, compounded by the natural vs. C-section quandry, is among women, though by now he surely is.)
But basically, this guy fully admits, his big job was to impregnate his wife and then hold one of her legs during labor nine months later.
Yet he's trying to claim halvsies on the experience, and then calls Nicole's vagina "an oracle."
Really dude? An ... oracle? (Well, that's a lot better than what most guys call them, but it made me laugh really hard.)
So obviously Josh is a good guy, and a good writer (though I am not sure he'll live down the oracle thing anytime soon), and I am going to bookmark his blog on my list of faves.
But if a woman wrote this kind of thing, she'd be pilloried for it, don't you think?
Is there a double-standard about what dads can get away with saying about pregnancy, labor and parenting? Are women criticized too much for what they write and say? Leave a comment, or drop an email at email@example.com
about the author
Erica Noonan is chief of the Globe West bureau. Before joining the Globe in 2000, she worked for the Associated Press in Boston. Raised in Wellesley, she has a master's degree in political communication from Emerson College and a BA in political science from Trinity University in San Antonio. She lives in Natick with two energetic children: Dennis, 6, and Lila, 4.
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