I recently stumbled across the A Little Pregnant blog, which should be required reading for any politician thinking about tackling issues related to infertility and assisted reproduction.
This blog got me thinking, because it is a little window into a world I will never personally know. I hope that I have come away from my read through her archives a little more sensitive to the things that cause people who do have personal experience with infertility unnecessary pain.
One of my favorite things about reading "mommyblogs" is that they give me a chance to learn a little bit about communities I am unlikely to get much firsthand knowledge of in real life. For instance, I like to check in on One Tired Ema from time to time. I check in mostly because she's funny, and tells good stories. But I've also learned just a little bit about what life is like for an Orthodox Jewish stay at home mom with relatives in Israel. This is something my offline life is not likely to provide me with many opportunities to learn. I probably do know people who share many of the opinions and experiences Lindsay writes about at Suburban Turmoil, but we're unlikely to have the sort of open and frank discussion of religion she hosted the other day because it would probably make us both uncomfortable.
I have very little in common with the women who write some of the blogs I check in on regularly, but what I have in common with them is completely fundamental. We all love our children, and want what's best for them.
The "mommyblog" scene is not all sweetness and light. There are ugly, judgmental debates about whether you should or shouldn't let your baby cry it out, whether everyone is trying hard enough to breastfeed, or if people are making mothers who can't/don't breastfeed feel unnecessarily bad, etc. If pushed, I'd probably have some opinions on most topics, but if parenting has taught me anything it is some humility and respect for the limits of my opinions. I try to just appreciate the little windows into other types of lives, and remember that my opinion really only applies to what is best for my baby.
Despite the flaws of the momosphere, I have to think that there are other people like me out there, following the common thread of parenthood and reading blogs that are exposing them to different communities, enjoying the stories and learning a little bit about life in someone else's shoes. And that must be a good thing.