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What Does The Word “Mommy Blogger” Mean To You?

Mommy bloggers! 

We get a bum rap, a lot of the time.

It’s kind of a damned if you do and damned if you don’t. When we’re authentic, we’re accused of being negative and when we’re upbeat and positive, we’re fake. And this often comes from our very own readers. Believe me, I’ve seen the thinly veiled snark and remarks online to know this for a fact. As a mommy blogger, first and foremost, I’m also very aware that we’re not taken seriously as bloggers and writers. This was never more clear to me than when I was fielding a comment from someone a couple of weeks ago, said in jest, but with a strong undercurrent of truth, that I should pretty much shut my mouth, not voice my opinion and perhaps I should just stick with writing about the colour of baby poo. Big diss.

And this is not isolated incident or a local issue either.

Yesterday a post was shared on the South African Mom Blogs FB page that got our community talking. An overseas mom blogger who wrote a scathing and frankly mean, spiteful, ugly, bitter <insert relevant adjective here> about Mommy bloggers and why we’re all, frankly, just crap. Apparently we can’t write for sh*t. We use too many exclamation marks!!!! We lie about our stats??? And we’re just basically a dishonest bunch of bleggers only out for free samples, we’re basically the pond scum of the blogging community. I won’t share the link to that particular post, I think she’s had enough air time.

And this does not come only from bloggers, it comes from blog readers and even digital marketers who are supposed to work with the Mommy blogging community.  (I’ve seen this first hand).

South African Mom Blogs wrote about it today and Cindy from 3 Kids, 2 Dogs & 1 Old House wrote about it yesterday too. They’re worth reading and thinking about.

But my question is, or rather, what I’m trying to get straight in my own head, is why our community is seen this way? Why are we poked fun at? Why are we not taken seriously? Why we’re seen as only good enough for sharing cutesy pictures of our baby with a little blurb about the colour of their poo?

I mean, I’m not a cutesy person. Far from it. My story is hardly cutesy either. It’s ugly and harsh and emotional and dark but it’s also filled with hope and triumph and I hardly think of myself as a cutesy writer. I’m opinionated and strong willed, as most bloggers are, and unafraid to share my opinion, so don’t tell me to shut up and write about baby poo. Because I won’t! I don’t!

But what is it about Mom bloggers that garners this reaction from people? Why are we not taken seriously? Why are we seen as dishonest bleggers? I read some of the comments on the FB thread yesterday and saw that even some within our own community see us this way.

Why is it this way?

I honestly don’t know.

I’d honestly like to know?

And how do we change that perception?

After all, Mom bloggers are strong, multi-dimensional women, brave enough to put themselves out there and share their thoughts, opinions and experiences with others, while often facing harsh and at times, unfair criticisms. So what makes anyone think we’re only worthy of writing about the colour of baby poo?

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12 Comments

  • Reply Laura

    I think it is beause up until recently we haven’t taken ourselves seriously. We have always felt less than – so we have been treated like that

    May 19, 2016 at 12:49 pm
    • Reply Sharon

      Have we though? Because I feel like I’ve always taken this seriously? But like all of us, when someone ask me what I blog about, I feel ashamed to say that I’m a mommy blogger. I’m happy to say I’m a parenting or lifestyle blogger but perhaps its as Cathy said… the connotation to the word “mommy”?

      May 19, 2016 at 1:54 pm
  • Reply Cath

    I wonder, why do you limit yourself to the term ‘mommy blogger’? Your blog is much more than that. C’mon, I found it while researching banting. I certainly don’t see you as a ‘mommy blogger.’ Yours is a blog about your life.

    Personally, I hate the term ‘mommy blogger’. I don’t know what it was originally intended to mean, but the connotations of mommy blogger are certainly no longer positive. And changing nuances in the meanings of words are so important. As you mentioned in your post, while your kids are the primary thing you write about, it is certainly not the only thing you write about. I don’t have kids, and yet I keep coming back to your blog – I’m not really interested in reading a daily ‘poo’ post, or whatever people seem to think you should write about. I enjoy the varied content and getting some idea as to what the reality of having kids will be like.

    I didn’t read the original post that you and Cindy referenced, but when I hear the term mommy blogger, I immediately want to roll my eyes.
    Who, besides your kids even calls you mommy – it’s such a cutesy, juvenile term. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I cannot recall anyone ever introducing themselves as a mommy and be expected to be taken seriously. Mom/mum – yes, mother – quite formal, but also yes. Mommy – no.

    As a generalisation, American bloggers have also done the term a dis-service. Full of saccharine and judgement, with an unlimited pass to play the mom card (the whole ‘your life will never be as tough as mine – I’m a mom’) – no thanks.

    Anyways, my point is, the term seems to have become negative and limiting – Not being a blogger myself, I don’t really understand the influencers/ money aspect of it, but why pigeon-hole yourself when you write about your life – and like everyone’s, it changes and grows and goes through periods where there are different focuses, but ultimately it is your life. Your kids obviously form a large part of your day-to-day, but they are not the only part of your world, so why be a one-dimensional blogger and only write about them?

    May 19, 2016 at 1:27 pm
    • Reply Sharon

      I also hate the term “mommy” for the same reason’s as you mentioned, no one calls me Mommy except Ava & Hannah and the term is far too cutesy when coming from an adult mouth. I prefer parenting blogger or lifestyle blogger which seems to encompass so much more than a singular topic.
      Having said that, there should be no shame in being a mommy blogger, there are some phenomenal ones out there and it’s time that we get taken as seriously as the rest.

      May 19, 2016 at 1:52 pm
      • Reply Cath

        I have no doubt that that there are some who proudly call themselves mommy bloggers and have amazing blogs. People are very quick to make generalisations, for every facet of your life. Sometimes they’re complimentary ones, other times not so much. Some days you have the energy to correct them, other days it’s easier to just ignore it. (at least that’s been my experience)Of course being on social media makes it that much more prominent, and you’ll never be able to make everyone happy, so write what you love and have the readers who will appreciate it.

        May 19, 2016 at 2:52 pm
  • Reply Cassey Toi

    I figure it’s a perception that is there, because like everything else in society the true worth and how great something is can’t be seen until some man says it is so. Sigh. The patriarchy runs deep.

    May 19, 2016 at 4:50 pm
  • Reply Cass

    Great post !!!! (Oops exclamation marks)

    I read that link yesterday and I felt appalled at her angst and how she boxed others due to her personal experience . So she then summed up everybody else as the same, because she was guilty of it.

    I know as bloggers we have opinions , but purposely attacking your blogging tribe makes no sense to me!

    Also I’m not sure why others would box us mommy bloggers and not take us seriously . Our work / our content should speak for itself. I suppose we must just focus on what we love doing through our blogs and let our voice speak for itself X

    May 19, 2016 at 7:39 pm
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