My Response to the Breastfeeding Time Magazine Cover

Many are up in arms by the image on the latest Time Magazine cover.  But to me, it’s the words that get under my skin.  That question, “Are you Mom Enough?” is a ridiculous question and speaks so strongly to the different areas of guilt that all mothers struggle with.  I get a little defensive with the pressure to be a perfect mom – especially when tied to breastfeeding.  There is a reason wet nurses have long existed – not all women have the same milk producing super powers.  Through what I personally provided, a generous donor and lots and lots of doctor hounding for milk bank milk, I provided as much breast milk as I could for Owen.  But to many, it wasn’t enough.   I’m really insulted that the fact that I didn’t make an abundance of (or even much at all) milk makes me a lesser mom to some.  So I ask those that judge me;

Are you mom enough to, in less than a year, make doctors assume you are in the medical field because you know your child in their medical language so well?

Are you mom enough to realize that it’s actually much worse when your baby stops crying for blood draws because they are so used to the pain?  (By the way, they bleed more when they cry, so it’s actually a faster blood draw and likely less pokes if they cry).

Are you mom enough to help restrain your fighting child as someone shoves a tube down his nose to the top of his intestines?

Well, actually, you may not think so, but you probably are.  I’m Mom enough to hope you never have to find out.  Please don’t judge me for what I wasn’t able to do and I won’t judge you for what you didn’t have to do.  Every mother to each child is different, but most are doing they best they can and most are pretty damn amazing.

May all the mothers have a happy day that’s free of guilt and unwanted judgments.  Happy Mother’s Day!


© Copyright Tatum, All rights Reserved. Written For: Ain't No Roller Coaster

10 thoughts on “My Response to the Breastfeeding Time Magazine Cover

  1. Favorite sentence in this response – ”I’m mom enough to hope you never find out”. I think there is one thing all mom’s share, guilt. There is always something we feel we could do better. And yet, that wanting to do everything for our child proves just how ”mom enough” we are, no matter how we choose or are able to feed our child. I think it’s such a shame for a magazine to add to the guilt many may feel about a subject like breastfeeding, that is not as natural or easy as so many assume.

  2. Tatum,
    You last two posts made me cry in these early morning hours when I sit here in silence. If there has been ONE thing about your story over the past year that has struck me time and time again, it is how you have been able to stand tall and stay positive through what seems like a day to day battle with Owen. I can’t think of another who has inspired me more as a mother than you!!! When life stresses me out, I often find myself saying, “this is NOTHING compared to what Tatum faces day in and day out”. Thanks for all your inspirations and life lessons you provide for other mothers. You are an amazing mother, woman, and friend.

  3. Tatum,
    Well written/spoken!! I think I mentioned this once before in a response, but I’m going to say it again. You are an amazing Mother, I’m sure, but you are also an amazing writer. Maybe you should consider a new career??
    Belated Happy Mother’s Day to you!!

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