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The Politicization of Motherhood (Part Two)

by
Forerunner, "WorldWatch," January-April 2018

The political assault on motherhood and the nuclear family continues.

In Part One, we discussed the growing political divide over the traditional role that a mom plays in the rearing of her children. Erica Kommisar, a psychoanalyst and self-professed liberal, is convinced, despite her political leanings, that stay-at-home mothering is critical to the development of emotionally healthy children, especially for the first three years of life.

This idea runs contrary to most liberal thinking that mothers should focus on returning to work as soon after childbirth as is possible, while, if need be, leaving their newborn to be raised at a daycare center.

While many mainstream news outlets have actively ignored Kommisar and her book, others have openly tried to invalidate her research and controversial conclusions by accusing her of inflicting guilt upon working mothers. One such rebuttal was headlined “New Moms Have Plenty to Deal With at Work. Don’t Add More Guilt,” written by Lauren Smith Brody:

I was stunned to read author and therapist Erica Kommisar extolling the virtues of mommy guilt in a recent Wall Street Journal interview. Her new book, Being There, urges mothers to stay home with their children for their first three years of life; my new book, The Fifth Trimester, gives new mothers the tools and agency to go back to work with a small baby, even if they must do so before they are physically and emotionally ready to be there, as 75 percent of the women I surveyed reported had been the case. (Emphasis ours throughout.)

It is noteworthy that Brody is shaming Kommisar for the guilt she imposes upon new mothers while she shamelessly promotes her own book by admitting that 75 percent of the new mothers she interviewed are returning to work “before they are physically and emotionally ready to do so.” Reading further exposes a more dubious agenda:

I discovered in my research that when a mother feels guilty for working, she’s feeling anxious about a supposed “choice” she made in the context of societal norms—to work, to leave her baby, to invest in her career’s future and strive to make more money in spite of the gender pay gap.

Instead of offering an objective rebuttal to Kommisar’s research and conclusions, Brody, and most of the progressive left, seem far more concerned about addressing the gender pay gap in America, while striving to eliminate any guilt that an absentee mother quite naturally feels.

It is not our purpose to demonize daycare, which, in and of itself, is not evil. It is but one facet of this world, operating without a knowledge of God. Many fine people devote their working lives to helping children, and there is no good reason to doubt their sincerity or their utility to society. Financial circumstances force many well-intentioned mothers into the workplace despite their better desires.

However, society suffers when infected with the political agendas of the feminist left. This godless strategy seeks to destroy the traditional institution of marriage, and it degrades motherhood by teaching that a woman’s worth is solely determined by only one of the many hats she may choose to wear—that is, her job outside the home and her family. The following quotes expose the evil nature of this toxic way of thinking:

» Feminist blogger Amy Glass writes, “You will never have the time, energy, freedom or mobility to be exceptional if you have a husband and kids.”

» Sheila Cronin, a feminist and leader of the National Organization of Women, claims: “Since marriage constitutes slavery for women, it is clear that the women’s movement must concentrate on attacking this institution. Freedom for women cannot be won without the abolition of marriage.”

Raising children is a team effort. Ideally, mothers do not do it alone, which is one reason why marriage is such an important institution in God’s Plan for humanity. If one or the other parent is not there to raise and nurture a child, then the extended family should help, including grandparents, aunts, and uncles, if possible. As children grow older, others come into play, such as neighbors, teachers, coaches, ministers, employers, and so on. However, research shows the mother lays the all-important foundation for emotionally healthy children.

Finally, while she may choose to wear other hats—as a wife, daughter, church member, employee, or employer—her role as a mother is critical to the future of the family, the community, the church, and the nation.




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The Politicalization of Motherhood

Start of this series

The Politicization of Motherhood (Part One)