Friday, October 15, 2010

A Bad Fit

My sister-in-law, who is wonderful in every way, recommended a book after an emotional discussion about the joys/hardships of choosing to stay home and be a mother full time.  I took the book home excited to continue the spirit of our discussion. 

Oh, it was not to be...

The book is called It Takes a Mother to Raise a Village by Colleen Down.  I made it about half way through before deciding it wasn't worth finishing since I kept poking my eye in frustration. 

The book begins with her explanation of the title.  Right off the bat I could tell by her almost venomous interpretation of the original quote, "It takes a village to raise a child" that we would not be seeing eye to eye.  I felt she missed the true message of the quote which illustrated the need for a community while raising children.  Down bring up the point that it does not take a village, rather a mother back in the home making decisions and following motherly instincts rather than depending on "professionals" on parenting.  She has polarized the issue which I feel is counterproductive.

She then takes on the Little Red Hen story twisting it a bit to fit her point that nobody wants to help us raise our children unless it fits their political agenda.  And the political oh, I don't know, anger,... frustration,... continues on.  Is motherhood sometimes a hard and lonely job?  Absolutely.  Does it feel like you do everything?  Yes.  I felt at times this book was therapy for this mother of seven.

Down's voice throughout the book attempted humor that fell flat for me.  It  is somewhat harsh towards herself and other women.  While I'm sure some would find it funny I found her incredibly insensitive and at times simply annoying.  Again, just a bad fit.

She continues to give lots and lots of advice on why mother knows best, how to raise boys, and why women get depressed.  Hot topics for sure, but unless you love her personality and perception don't bother. 

I did, however, get something out of this book.  And, funny enough, she had learned this from someone else.  Everyday women should do the "five finger rule." 
"...We need to do something spiritual, something creative, something educational, something social and something physical."  
 I like this.  It is simple, important and easy to remember.  I just ignored her insight into each "finger" as it was nothing new. 

Again, for some this book may be the best read ever!  For me, it was not a good fit.

I did start the book, I am a Mother by Jane Clayson Johnson and already it is like breathing new air! 

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