Running on Empty & a Reading Assignment

NaBloPoMo has exhausted my all my blogging ideas. I have a few drafts in the tank, but nothing I feel driven and passionate about writing about. And today, being Friday, I am pretty much just done. So.

I am thinking I might write my thoughts on this article this weekend.

But right now I can’t gather my thoughts. Other then general agreement with the premise of the article. But I am going to go there. I would love to hear what you think too. Why don’t you take a read through when you have a minute. You know, if you wanna. I will be here.

And go.


10 responses to “Running on Empty & a Reading Assignment

  1. Ironic Mom November 26, 2010 at 2:08 pm

    I agree with you on two fronts: (1) like you, I too am running on empty (I blame parent-teacher interviews); (2) the article is very interesting. I even commented over at, though I fear I didn’t make any sense!

    • amoment2think November 27, 2010 at 1:34 pm

      I loved your comment over there. Do you mind copying and bringing it over here too! Such a good point about knowledge at our fingertips…ect.!

      • Ironic Mom November 27, 2010 at 6:52 pm

        Sure. Here’s the comment I left at Slate:

        My own (likely flawed) theory about modern day parenting is that we are a generation used to being experts. In terms of the middle class, we are the first generation to parent with knowledge at our fingertips, to possibly live far from our families, and to birth after we’ve “made it” professionally. I sometimes think we apply our research skills from the professional world to parenting. Obviously, this may not be the approach.

        I blogged about this tendency a few months ago at

      • amoment2think November 27, 2010 at 7:43 pm

        I totally agree with your theory! I think we are used to be experts in terms not only knowledge at our finger tips, but also many of us had started a successful career before we became parents. We were used to being “good” at our lives. And so we try to apply the same studiousness to parenthood, thinking we can get it “right”… Reality is that getting a 3.6 GPA does not take the same skills as raising a child. Parenting is an art.

  2. SlackerInc November 26, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    I think it must now be acknowledged that this backlash against _________ parenting* is now the trendiest parenting fad of them all. The premises of her article are just so wrong on so many levels, the straw men she sets up so facile, I don’t even know where to begin.

    I will note that I have always been a contrarian about the “no drinking whatsoever during pregnancy” idea. But if the latest research finds that a little alcohol in pregnancy is not harmful and in fact may be benign, or that a little dirt is also a good thing, means (to me) people should change their practises to keep them in line with the best information out there, not that they should just blow off all research and development and lazily engage in what they rationalise as “benign neglect”.

    Furthermore, I’d note that the kids she is talking about who grew up in the ’70s and ’80s are GenX, my generation as it happens. Those are also the most conservative generation (at least here in the U.S.) and are thus largely to blame for the rise of people like Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck. Whereas the millennials, raised by what are derisively referred to as “helicopter parents”, are by contrast the most progressive cohort of voters. Coincidence? Perhaps. But I’m not so sure…

    • amoment2think November 27, 2010 at 1:31 pm


      There is a fairly established tendency that younger people tend to me more left wing in their believes and older people tend to be more conservative. There are also particular economic and political factors that can influence various generations to have a tendency to have various believes. I would also like to point out, that in their youth, Generation X is credited for being even more social progressive then the Baby Boomers. I don’t think you can blame Sarah Palin on parenting styles of the 70’s and 80’s. 🙂

      I should also say that I do not believe in ‘evidence based parenting’. Parenting is an Art, not a science. And for every study saying one thing, there are others saying the opposite. Not to mention that fact that different children require different parenting approaches. I am cool with you not calling it ‘helicopter parenting’, but you and I both use ‘evidence’ to influence our parenting methods, it just happens to be different evidence.

      • SlackerInc November 27, 2010 at 10:04 pm

        Kathleen, what you say in your second paragraph about every generation being liberal when they are young is a widely held belief, but–at least here in the U.S.–is just flat out wrong.

        One of the most profound misconceptions in American politics is that young people always have, and always will vote for Democrats. In 1984 Ronald Reagan won the young vote by more than 20 points. In 1988, George H.W. Bush beat Michael Dukakis by a comfortable margin. In 2000, the youth vote matched up with the rest of the electorate and voted evenly for both candidates.

        The youth vote in ’04, OTOH, was strongly Democratic, and has continued to be so since.

        Your second paragraph leaves me scratching my head. Both my wife and I have noticed that you consistently tend to make comments that seem to be trying to have things both ways, which is a bit maddening. Do you believe in evidence-based parenting or not? The first sentence of that second paragraph would seem to clearly indicate that you do not; but by the end of the paragraph you have muddied the waters.

        Anyway, I guess I’ll serve up two responses, one for each of your positions.

        (1) “I should also say that I do not believe in ‘evidence based parenting’. Parenting is an Art, not a science.”

        If you substitute “medicine” for “parenting”, this is the exact argument many old-school physicians make. Problem is, it has been proven beyond dispute that you get better patient outcomes using a “cookie cutter” approach that has been developed using peer-reviewed analyses of massive amounts of data rather than relying on the judgement or “intuition” of an individual physician.

        (2) “[Y]ou and I both use ‘evidence’ to influence our parenting methods, it just happens to be different evidence.”

        Different how? Can you be more specific? I’m going to guess you don’t reject the evidence that finds using rear-facing car seats is safer for infants in a crash. What about the “Back to Sleep” campaign, which appears to have saved many lives? Do you think it’s okay for parents to continue to use baby bottles with BPA in them? In short, what evidence do you reject (that I would not), and why?

      • amoment2think November 27, 2010 at 10:31 pm

        Guilty as charged. I tend to be somewhat flexible with my comments because I don’t believe in black and white. It’s all shades of grey and I often find myself seeing value and agreeing, at least partially, with multiple perspectives. Let’s just say the more I learn the more I am comfortable with ambiguity. Also, this blog is all about discussion, reflection and contemplation to me, not about having a decisive outcome to a debate. So yeah, that probably drives some readers mad. Sorry about that.

  3. SlackerInc November 26, 2010 at 11:53 pm

    I forgot to add my “footnote” (is that what you call an explanation at the bottom connected to an asterisk?) which should read as follows:

    * I put “_________ parenting” because I don’t think we have a neutral term for it that everyone can agree on. Those who denigrate it call it “helicopter parenting” or (as in this article) “trying to engineer perfect parenting”, etc.; but what would its advocates term it? “Mindful parenting”? Ooh, wait: how about “evidence-based parenting”? I could go with that.

  4. Perpetua November 27, 2010 at 6:02 am

    We’re almost there! The end of Nablopomo is in sight!

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