Tuesday, September 2, 2008

... So What Would You Do?

As most everyone in the US surely knows by now, Sarah Palin has a chance to become our country's first woman Vice President. She's a mom of 5, she has a special needs baby, she's a Christian, she's educated, she's successful - pretty much what lots of women strive to be. Yet she still does and will continue get flack for being a woman. Is she strong enough to run the country should the need arise? Is she experienced/educated/smart enough?

Regardless of what she really is or is not, her teenage daughter appears to be pregnant. Imagine you were just chosen as the Republican vice-presidential candidate, but your teenage daughter had just told you a few weeks ago that she's pregnant. What would you do? I mean, aside from being mad at her - how would you handle the situation? Would you be graceful or would you fall apart?

I tend to see situations like this as worse than they really are. If this were my child, and I was pushing abstinence-only sex education in schools, I think I'd feel like my career is over. However, as merely an observer of Palin and her family's life, I don't think it's as bad as it might seem to some. I'm sure as adults we can understand that sometimes our kids don't listen to us. Sometimes kids make bad choices. Sometimes we can tell our kids again and again, only to have them do it anyway. By the way, Palin herself was pregnant before she married the "first dude."

Also, many people are upset that Sarah Palin has an infant son with Down Sydrome. According to an article I read, she had the baby while governor of Alaska, found out early in the pregnancy that the baby would have Down Sydrome, gave birth, and returned to work 3 days later. This news has caused lots of mixed feelings among mothers, it seems. First of all, there are some people who feel that fetuses diagnosed with Down Sydrome should not be. There are also many mothers upset that Sarah Palin went back to work only 3 days after giving birth. In fact, Palin herself said that when she was 8 months pregnant, she woke up one day and felt contractions. She went to the doctor, was told to stay at home for bedrest. She had a speech to give that day as governor, and so she went to the speech anyway, despite what her doctor suggested she do. Some articles say she noticed that her water had broken and was trickling during the speech...

There are lots of mommy issues involved here, but really, what would you do? Why can't people accept that she wants to work and have a politcal career, and just expect her husband (the First Dude) to take care of the kids? Why can't she head back to work aftter 3 days if she feels able? After all, it looks like her maternity leave wasn't even scheduled for another month. I really don't see why mothers have to look down on other mothers who choose to work. On the other hand, I also don't understand why mothers who choose to work have to look down on those who do not.

The truth is, it's no one's business how she went into labor, when she went back to work, or who watches her kids during the day. As long as her kids are healthy and happy and safe, why can't we leave her alone?

Motherhood. It makes you nosey.


Anonymous said...

Totally and completely agree! Kids make mistakes, you can tell them repeatedly no no no, don't do this and well sometimes they gotta learn the hard way. Her daughters situation should not reflect on her abilities as a leader in anyway. Chrissie

Anonymous said...

Sometimes a kid messes up. But then again, so do adults...

Sarah D said...

Her daughter's situation should not reflect on her mother, but her mother should not have put her daughter under the harsh spotlight of what she had to have been aware would be harsh media scrutiny.

As a mother, your children come first. Give birth to a special needs child and then go to a meeting three days later??? Very questionable.

I would have admired her much, much more if she would have told McCain Thanks, but no thanks. I have an infant son and a daughter that needs me much more than you do right now. If she would have just told him, you see Mr. McCain, I am an American, but first I am a Mother, I would have applauded.

Women want to have it all, but if that comes at the price of putting your children in harms way is it worth it?

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