It never ceases to amaze me how many people whine about being stereotyped – and then those same people seem to go out of their way to enforce those stereotypes.
I’ll give you an example of a stereotype: Work-at-home mothers are frazzled women with six kids at their feet. They wear baby spitup, the washing machine runs all day, the dishes are piling up, and they have a million things on the go at once. No one appreciates them, they bitch and whine, and they feel they aren’t taken seriously in the business world.
Before I have my comment section filled up with nasty remarks about how I hate women and my email bombarded with insulted letters telling me that I have no idea what I’m talking about, let me reassure you that I fully understand the hardships of both being a mother and working from home. I respect work-at-home mothers.
I cannot say, in all honesty, that I know what it’s like to be a work-at-home mother, though. But I’m a dad, and that’s close.
Many blogs run by women, managed by women and read by women seem to have an unspoken “all men beware” mantra. They’re full of posts and comments that leave me the distinct impression that these women wield their feminism like a
spiked mace sword.
Woe to the man that steps foot in those online communities of female bloggers with children.
On the few occasions that I’ve risked my balls to post a comment on a mommy blog, I noticed my comments were skipped over as if they (I?) didn’t even exist. Sometimes my comments get a sharp, snappy, “piss off” kind of remark in reply. Sometimes I’m absolutely bashed, and I have a hard time figuring out why.
I don’t understand that. Yes, I understand catering to a female/mother audience and forming a blog community. I understand forming an online personality. I understand discussing the difficulties of working while raising children and maintaining a household.
I don’t understand making male readers and participants feel unwelcome. I know plenty of mothers who blog and who come off as… well, bloggers who are mothers. They don’t perpetuate the stereotype of a frazzle Mom trying to work in a household of chaos. They don’t try to shave the balls of all males who dare to visit the blog. They don’t discount opinions from men. Everyone is equal. They blog, they work, and they raise their children.
There are plenty of blogs run by women whom I respect and admire. Laura Spencer’s Writing Thoughts is one. Catalyst Blogger has also recently caught my attention. Naomi Dunford’s blog is a blog I like, too. I know Naomi has a child. The other two women may or may not. Does it matter?
Those blogs don’t make me feel like an outsider because I’m male. I’m not afraid to comment. I know my comments are read. I feel like if I toddle over to visit the blog, my balls won’t be lopped off and tossed to the wolves.
Whether you are a mother, a father, a single person, or whomever you choose to be, be open. All individuals have something valuable to offer. Each person is unique, regardless of who they are – or which gender they might be.