We are, obviously, very protective over our mothers. And why shouldn’t we be? Not only did they give us life, but they know the exact moments when we need a hug, or a good laugh. Sure, all moms are different – but when they get lumped together as one in print, we have the right to be a little defensive. Unfortunately, The New York Times indirectly slammed your mom’s intellect when they printed a comic strip illustrating how Bitcoin compares to traditional dollars and cents, which was titled “How to Explain Bitcoin to Your Mom.”
I’m going to be honest with you: I grew up with computers, and I’m still a bit fuzzy with Bitcoin. Why are Moms the target for this? Is it because the stereotypical “mom” of today is naive, and confused by technology? Isn’t that thought a little ageist?
I’m sure a few of you may be thinking, “Karen – lighten up! It’s just a title!” But honestly, I’m just fearing that in our future, it’ll be more and more common to lump women who give birth in with people who shut their brain off entirely at a certain age. The quest to secure a generational gap has been apparent for awhile – in fact, think of all of the slogans that start with “Not Your Mom’s Way Of…” Is there necessarily something wrong with the way your mother handles a certain aspect of life that is so appalling? Shouldn’t our mothers serve as our heroes and role models, and shouldn’t they help us enrich our lives, instead of it being “us” versus “them”?
Some people aren’t interested in technological advances, and it has nothing to do with their age or their decision to have children. Women today are capable of so much – and most of them are able to navigate through an iPhone with ease. Many mothers are actually on top of technology, as a method of making sure they’re fully aware of what their child is doing. And if they’re not, we shouldn’t treat their individual lack of understanding as a big joke. Also – why aren’t dads targeted? I guess in our world, we see dads as being universally in-tune with Bitcoin, social networking and the Internet in general.
‘No amount of knowledge acquisition can prevent your mother from falling into this stereotype,” said Amanda Hess on Slate. “The only thing worse than a mom who doesn’t get it is one who tries: Mothers who attempt to stay abreast of youth culture are caricatured as pathetic harpies, a la Mean Girls’ “cool mom,” who embarrasses herself by attempting to adopt the parlance and wardrobe of her teenage daughter and friends.’
Sure, we all go through a stage when we’re younger when parents just don’t understand. We assume that they’re so out of date with our generation, when in reality, they’re only trying to look out for our well being. It’s simply a stage of growing up. Eventually, we look back and recognize the fact that we never actually outsmarted our parents – and they were never the enemy. We might even feel bad for showing them disrespect – and they’ll understand, since that stage is just one of the few murky sides of parenting that they’ve been clued into since we were born. Yet articles and ads that still target the teenager we once were can be seen as condescending. And one day, you too might feel slighted by the fact that Moms are largely viewed as being “not with the times”, and utterly clueless. Aging, having children, and growing up shouldn’t ever be milestones that prevent you from learning about the world today.
Next time you see something geared towards a mother not “doing it right”, pause and realize how these portrayals can be more insulting than humorous. Then give your Mom a call and make sure she knows that you appreciate her – whether or not she’s unemployed, or the CEO of her own company; If she is active on Twitter, or prefers real mail over e-mail. Because like everyone else in the world, every mom is slightly different – and should be fully appreciated for their individuality.