Mail Fail of the Day: the blame game

Thursday, 13 January 2011

"Why do mothers get the blame for everything?" asks Tanith Carey in today's Daily Mail. She laments the fact that men, celebrities and society as a whole heap blame on mothers for everything that goes wrong - whether that's for being a 'selfish' working mother and not getting the kids to bed on time to not being emotionally involved enough and causing all sorts of 'issues' for their children when they reach adulthood. She laments the fact that mothers put so much pressure on themselves to be 'perfect'.

She has a fair point, but i wonder why the Mail needs to ask such a question. After all, it's one of the biggest culprits when it comes to the culture of maternal blame we see so often in the media. Usually, it has to be said, the blame comes in the form of that old Mail favourite, the dubious 'study', but why bother reporting them? Looking back through the archives (I know, I know) it becomes obvious that there's not just a trend for blaming mothers for society's ills - but working mothers in particular. Not that we should be surprised, but it's kind of relentless:

- 'Working mothers are to blame if their children misbehave' says a leading psychologist
- Working mums beware: Why children of stay-at-home mothers have healthier lifestyles
- Working mothers 'put children at risk with low-quality childcare' says UN report
- How society 'suffers while mothers are out working'
- Working mothers risk damaging their child's prospects
- Children of working mothers lag behind
- Children of working mothers are telly tubbies: Obesity concerns for latchkey kids
- Mothers' smoking is to blame for up to 90% of cot deaths
- Glass ceiling? We've only ourselves to blame
- How hysterical mothers have driven men out of teaching
- I've made my daughter hate her body: They call it 'thin-heritance' - how mothers pass on their dieting obsessions
- Mothers' birth choices linked to rise in childhood diabetes
- It's liberal mothers who are the real dopes
- Children of part-time mothers 'less obese than those of stay-at-home mums'
- Mothers are raising a generation of wimps
- 'The modern disease of pushy mothers', by Kirsty Young
- 'Emma Thompson's right. And it's children who pay for the 'having it all' lie, says FAY WELDON
- 'Superwoman is a myth' say modern women because 'family life suffers with working mums'

Yet another instance where the newspaper could really do with taking a long hard look at itself as the cause of certain problems. It's no wonder mothers are anxious that they're 'to blame' for everything.

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