Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Why non-Mormons can't stop reading Mormon housewife blogs.

my sister sent me the link to this article and i was fascinated. go read it. i think you will be fascinated, too.

i enjoyed the article regardless of the authors somewhat condescending tone. what i found fascinating and surprising is that women out there peek into the world of the stay-at-home mormon mom and feel "uplifted".

"To read Mormon lifestyle blogs is to peer into a strange and fascinating world where the most fraught issues of modern living -- marriage and child rearing -- appear completely unproblematic. This seems practically subversive to someone like me, weaned on an endless media parade of fretful stories about "work-life balance" and soaring divorce rates and the perils of marrying too young/too old/too whatever."

there are hundreds of comments attached to this article, and lots of discussions about it elsewhere, with many people claiming that these mormon mommy bloggers are obviously painting a picture of perfection that doesn't actually exist, or that our church tells us to write these things, however untrue, so as to convert others. that in reality, it's all a facade to the miserable, boring and unfulfilled life of the stay-at-home mom. there are MANY comments stating that these mormon mommy-bloggers don't actually exist and it's all an advertising campaign for the church. WHA?!

and this is where i wish i could stand on a mountain top and yell to all the overworked and under appreciated women of the world who are told that there is nothing worthwhile to be gained from being a mother, a homemaker and a wife. if only they knew what joy could be found.

i don't have to know "Naomi and Stacie and Stephanie and Liz" personally to know that they find absolute joy everyday in their marriage and their children. i know this because i may not personally know the authors of those very popular mormon mommy blogs but i personally know the authors of a hundred others. women who may bake cupcakes or take endless, gorgeous photos of their children, who adore their husbands and whose husbands adore them, who might craft or sew or cook and clean and who give their babies a thousand kisses a day and find joy in every second of it.

i asked my friend jen to come speak about motherhood to a group of teenage girls at our church a few months back. she put it perfectly when she said that the world will tell you that motherhood is not glamorous, but the world couldn't be more wrong." she finds it glamorous to have tea parties with two little girls every day, and her list of the glamorous aspects of motherhood went on and on.

of course, life is not perfect. in all honestly, sometimes i read those picture-perfect blogs and think..."give me a break! life is not all cupcakes and bright, red lipstick and taking adorable photos of every date night you and your husband have ever been on!" we all know that life is hard for everyone. but i never once doubt the true happiness that i see in the smiles of all those mormon mommy {or not mommy} bloggers out there.

{photo from here}

and what i wish i could tell, face to face, to every women out there who deep-down feels a yearning to be a mother and wife but who is told around every corner that that is not a worthwhile pursuit...is that i have never known such pure happiness and joy as i have now that i am the wife to a wonderful guy and the mom to a precious baby girl.

is it always easy? no way. is life always a picture of perfection? absolutely not. but is it joyful and worth while? to that question i can give a resounding yes!

now if we could only just all figure out a way for us to make a living off of posting photos everyday of ourselves with cupcakes and bangs.


Meg said...

I love this post. I agree that I wish there was a way to tell every woman out there what happiness is avialable to them. It is cool though to know that wether readers fully believe the picture that is painted in these mormon mommmy blogs that they are at least mostly positive.

Katie A. said...

Look, I am commenting! I had to when I read this. It is true that there is a joy in raising children and loving your husband that you can't find anywhere else.

Katie A. said...

Look, I am commenting! I had to when I read this. It is true that there is a joy in raising children and loving your husband that you can't find anywhere else.

Nichole said...

Annie, I love this post. I love reading things like this on your blog because they're raw, honest and blunt. They are refreshing. Thanks for being real and keep it up. I love you.

Marcus and Amy said...

Well said!!! I just read this same article today too and I started to read the comments, but stopped after page 4 cause it was just getting a little out of hand and very mean spirited.

That was my favorite comment though...we are all on an advertising campaign for the church.....

Maybe if you look real hard you can see our horns and tails in all those profesional pictures!!!

Sarah said...

I will reread this post on a bad day. I am serious. Thanks for sharing.

Dustin and Whit said...

this was the perfect thing for me to read when I woke up this morning at 4:30am and couldn't go back to sleep, I found the article really interesting, thanks for sharing!

Caitlin said...

really interesting. thanks for sharing. i do hope that people feel uplifted, and women can feel empowered. loved your thoughts... thanks :)

Miranda said...

I loved this article, too! I got it by email a couple times from family and thought how funny, and true it is that mormon blogs tend to be somewhat addicting. And that there are so many of them/us?! Right? I do love your final twist, though, that it would be even better if we were all making money for it:) But for the time being, what a cool way to record, interact, share and channel all of our lives successes (and occasional inevitable failures;)

Oh, and hello again! Blogs are also great for keeping in touch, no?

xo Miranda

kl said...

I will have to go read that article..I often think that we don't realize how worth while being a good mommy is until our kids are old and grown!! A lot of mom's keep good perspective and show the great moments in their lives with their families on their blogs. Anyway..