Is Facebook's #motherhoodchallenge just fueling the Mommy Wars?
Have you been tagged in the Facebook #motherhoodchallenge yet?
I haven't. But it's now officially the latest viral challenge to hit Facebook, and apparently it's kind of polarizing. Why? Because this time, moms are asked to post five photos that make them "proud to be a mom," and then turn around and nominate other women they think are great moms to participate.
To be honest, I haven't really given much thought to the fact that I haven't been nominated yet. In fact, I haven't even given the posts clogging up my newsfeed more than a cursory glance. After all, isn't every image we post on Facebook one that makes us proud? Isn't coming out and saying so simply an exercise in redundancy?
Others, however, are not so blase about the whole thing. Take Suzanne Jannese, who vented about the challenge over on Babble. "Firstly, what if you haven't been tagged?" she asked. "What if Linda and all the gang from preschool pickup have tagged just about every mom in the class and not you — how does that make you feel? Or your old girlfriends who've tagged each other but somehow forgot you. Does that mean you're not a 'great' Mom?"
"Or, let's say you were tagged," she continued. "Do you post the pictures—any excuse to show off your amazing spawn, after all? Or do you ignore it completely, declaring it 'just another example of moms being set apart as a special breed who feel superior to other women.'"
I'll take "Who cares?" for 500, Alex.
Look, if forced to choose, I'd probably take the latter route. But more out of laziness than anything else. Do I think the challenge is pointless? Yes. Polarizing? I'm not so sure. Am I ready to get all up in arms about it? No. Because once we start judging others for participating or whining about the fact that we haven't been invited to the party, we become just another part of the Mommy Wars problem.
You want to take part in the challenge? Great. You think it sucks? Good for you. You tagged five of my besties but left me off the list? So be it. I'm still the same type of mom I was five minutes ago.
I didn't post a picture of my brother on National Sibling Day, and last time I checked, he's still my brother. So I think the real question here is: Why do we continue to care so much about what others are doing? And even worse, why are we looking to Facebook for validation? Why can't we just scroll past these posts and continue on with our day?
For me at least, that's the real #motherhoodchallenge.