Hello Illinois. How are you today?

Well had you told me I was on the FRONT PAGE...
I can’t believe the STRONG reactions I’m getting to the letter I wrote to Michelle Obama.

Maybe it’s because everyone is on vacation. Maybe it’s because you all have a mother. Maybe it’s because we all want the chance to change the world. I don’t know.

Mullato.org is protesting me (although, Dude…not even ONE email yet, nice protest Sparky) and I’m even being accused of being (gasp) a REPUBLICAN trying to discourage Senator Obama from running. Those of you who actually know me just spit your drink on your keyboard.

After all of this craziness, I’ve only come to one conclusion: Motherhood is hard fucking work.

You can’t even write about some of the decisions a mother makes without stirring up a shitstorm. Smack my ass and call me Caitlin Flanagan, because now people are debating “changing the world or protecting the family.”


But that really is what all of this is about. It’s about being a mother. Do you go with showing your children just how big of an impact you can make on the world? Do you take the safer route? It’s about choices. And the millions of choices that go with motherhood. Breast or bottle. Work or home. Cloth or disposable? It. Never. Ends.

My letter to Michelle Obama was nothing more than my sympathy and empathy for having to make yet another motherhood decision. And as we all know, what is best for one family is not, necessarily best for the next.

I still breastfeed my 21-month old. That is a choice that I get shit for. But it works for my family. Sure, it’s not an oval office issue or anything, but it’s an issue none the less. And it seems we women get shit for any decision we make on any motherhood issue.

As a mother, and a mother with a rather LOUD speaking platform, I will happily get the back of ANY MOM for their decisions. It’s time for the world to SHUT THE FUCK UP and remember it’s the mothers who sacrifice, suffer, and agonize over those decisions.

I just spent 10 minutes wondering if I should let my son have another juice box. 10 freaking minutes. And that was over a juice box. And don’t even get me started on the runny nose he currently has and which, if any, medication I will give him for it tonight.

The talking heads and pundits can make fun of me all they want, but how soon they forget photos like this, and this, and this. It’s easy to dismiss a “self-described Mom” when she’s showing support for a fellow mother, but it’s not so easy to dismiss all the mothers, wives, and children I see in those photos.

So mount your protests and do your best spin on my very honest letter. Just keep reading. Because the Mom voice will stay loud, and we’re making the decisions that rock the world-whether you like it or not.


  1. I think you should protest those that think you are a Republican’t. Oh and the Dad’s have your back. Or at least this one does.

  2. Queen of Spain says:

    Thanks Lance.

    I knew the Dads would be there.

    And yeah, I feel the need to protest something. I nominate you as my campaignperson.

  3. Okay, first of all not all Republicans are bad. I’m a Republican, but I am smart about my battles.

    The day YOU become a Republican is the day we can ice skate in hell. Just saying.

    Second, I think it’s amazing that you wrote that letter. It’s not something you wrote to offend or upset your readers. The people who took it out of context are jumping to conclusions because they are afraid to admit the truth you put forth.

    As a conservative Republican, I knew exactly what you meant. Just weeks ago, I wrote a post at BlogHer about my liking of Obama….and you know that was based on my own research because YES! we do need a change in government and politics.

    I think we need to start a letter campaign to these papers praising your efforts Erin. Fuck those people out there who are not intelligent enough to see that BIG, GIANT freaking elephant in the room. They need thicker glasses.

  4. A1 above the fold? Oh, you have my inner journalist in such a fit of jealousy you can’t imagine!!!


  5. Hey,
    I am not a mom but your blog keeps me interested enough to check in daily. I thought your letter was great. You didn’t say anything that I, the un-mother, hadn’t thought of as well. Bravo for writing it. Its makes me sad that people can’t read it for what it is.
    I was watching a 60 Minutes type show about Obama and they interviewed one of his supporters who was an african american woman about 100 years old. Her words were, “i don’t know if he’ll be voted into presidency and if he is i don’t know how long he will live.” I remember exactly because i was shocked – and realized that sadly she was probably right.
    My point is that more than anything I think people like to argue and this was something else to be offended over. Lots of people have thought of this and you were just ballsy enough to write about it but more than that, give people the opportunity to respond.

  6. This Dad… this Illinois Dad, has your back as well Queen…

    People, especially when speaking of politics… are idiots…

  7. Queen of Spain says:

    KEMP! Yes! I totally forgot you lived in that “mid”west place! Thanks.

    …and yes, I realize I did not even address the protest by Dave over at Mullato.org. Mainly because I don’t even know where to begin. And because it’s TOTALLY not the fight I was expecting after writing this letter. But after a nice phone chat with Kelly (aka http://mochamomma.com) I feel much more sane.

    Well, as sane as I can feel.

  8. Teri O’IsSheFuckingKidding isn’t even someone of any worth. I wouldn’t even worry about her. She talks out of both sides of her mouth and spews such drivel it amazes me that she thinks anyone takes her seriously. She has, what…? 6 responses? But her bio says that she’s on par with Rush Limbaugh? Wow.

    The reason I tend to shy away from politics is because of issue mudding. We start to talk about one thing and then a million others begin to come into the conversation until it’s so clouded that you forget what the original intent was. They end up talking about military sacrifices and how (they believe) that Democrats can’t understand it. Let me, as an English major, make this perfectly clear for them: THE ENTIRE LETTER ERIN WROTE WAS ABOUT SACRIFICE.

    I’ll bet they didn’t do well on term papers in school. Bet they missed the theme a lot.

    Why didn’t you tell me you were a “self-described mom”? YOU? Self-described? Well, don’t that beat all?

    Keep the faith, honey. Assuming, of course, that as a self-described Democrat you have any.

  9. i can see how, if you are looking at the world through The Bushes, your letter could be misunderstood – even how it could sound threatening. eerily so, actually. thankfully the CST understands you, and so do we.

    btw: the huffpost is my husband’s home page.

  10. Having grown up in a wildly political family where people not only ran for offices, they HELD offices (did I mention my grandmother was the republican party chairperson for the STATE was the least of these) and well……here is what I know.
    People don’t ever have a fucking clue what they are talking about. When politics erupt, I swear to you, people lose their minds. Everyone is a damn pundit and expert, and every store requires spin.
    It’s why I REFUSE to discuss politics or political matters with anyone.

    It’s not that I’m not interested or have opinions, it’s just that I don’t wish to ENGAGE the masses. Because ask Caesar, the masses will turn on you, baby.

    (and no, I’m not a Republican.)

  11. “i can see how, if you are looking at the world through The Bushes,”

    Gunky, I know I don’t know you and I’m trying not to be offenseive, but it’s comments like that, that start these types of political feuds. How do you know how the Bush family sees the world? How do you know how the Clinton family sees the world? How do you know how the Obama family sees the world.

    Erin is talking about a sacrifice that must be made. It’s not about political party. After all Democrat, Republican, Liberal, Conservative — these are just labels that society uses to identify and own it’s citizens.

    Erin said in a comment to me that Obama may the one man who can bring this country together and I want to believe that…I think we all need to take responsibility for our remarks, not everyone who is a Republican is wrong or bad or negative.

  12. “Teri O’IsSheFuckingKidding” (heh) reminds me of Dr. Laura a little. And makes me throw up in my mouth a little. Jesus, people. Grow the fuck up, no?

    Erin, I thought your letter rocked and so would anyone else who was mature and intelligent enough to take it at face value. My huz liked it too, and we both have your virtual back.

    Must we always look for hidden meanings to reinforce our own agendas? Drives me up the freaking wall…

  13. I seriously doubt the decision hasn’t been made yet. They may be “testing the waters” and so on, but I don’t think that would be happening if he didn’t already have the go-ahead from his wife. But, until you get a reply from Michelle, it’s all a guessing game. Who knows. Maybe she’ll give her reply to you on Oprah.

  14. Queen of Spain says:

    OPRAH! Does Oprah have my back too? Because if Oprah has my back, I fear NO ONE!!!!


  15. Erin,

    Here’s another Dad who has your back. I completely understand what you were trying to say, and I’m amazed that people are so desperate to vent their political opinions that they can’t see beyond your actual message.

    I think anyone who tries to change the world in a meaningful way needs to be aware of the risk they take by doing so. You never know when you’re going to anger some idiot who doesn’t agree with you. (And this isn’t a conservative/liberal thing. We’ve had attempts on the lives of politicians from all parts of the political spectrum. Because it only takes one idiot with a gun.

    I think your message was the right one, and I’ve totally got your back.

  16. It must have been a REALLY slow week, journalism-wise, if all those people had to dig so deeply into every word of that post of yours in order to find something to offend their own pre-conceived personal agendas, in order to have something to post about (that no on is apparently even reading, since you have more response HERE than the critical posts combined).

    Howzat for a run-on sentence?

    Oh, and I did learn something, aside from the fact that I never want a platform with as high a profile as HuffPo: I learned about the “one-drop rule.” It took me a while to figure it out from the context (because the guy kept using it as a verb, i.e. so-and-so “one-dropped” so-and-so, which I was trying to make into some sort of metaphorical drop-kick), and draw some vague memory from antebellum history, but identify it I did, finally–I think by recalling material from the Chesnutt book, “The Wife of His Youth.” But I am 40 years old and have NEVER heard that term in contemporary usage before, or any form of it. Never. And I have spent my entire life in Arkansas, excepting the first five years or so…which were in Mississippi.

  17. keep on getting on the backs of republicans, keep on always pissing people off, and keep on being cool towards us mammas we need all the support we can get. Oh and congrats on getting so much publicity-that’s great!

  18. Erin – you rock. I cannot add anything that was not already discussed (and discussed well) above. I loved your article on the H. Post. I wish you were a soccer mom (I’m on the “team roster” of a political blog call The Soccer Mom Vote and you’d be perfect on it).

  19. Oh, was that what that was all about, Belinda? I wondered. Good God, please tell me that we (as a society) are not back to that crap again.

  20. What bothered me most about Ms. O’Brien’s post was this sentence: “Another classic example of trying to create a victim status for political gain”

    Is she saying that you are calling Mrs. Obama a victim? And that you are doing it for political gain? She (O’Brien) seems to have forgotten that the Sun-Times was quoting you, and not someone from the Obama Campaign, if there even is one. EVERYONE seems to have forgotten that the post you wrote was based on your OPINIONS and FEELINGS, and not on your desire to actually sway an entire political party (it wasn’t, was it? LOL)

    And “self-described”? As if you are not actually a Mom, you just call yourself one for effect. Well, Ms. O’Brien, this ACTUAL MICHIGAN MOM supports Erin one hundred percent, and the only Republican in my family is my sister, but we don’t talk about her.

  21. Hey I’m with you. I just can’t believe the big issue that is being made out of your letter! Republican.

  22. I realize you probably meant good and were trying to show your political support for Obama, but I saw your “letter� to Mrs. Obama as pontificating and condescending like she needed to be reminded she should be looking out for her children and to be wary of the sacrifices made when one is in politics. Did you really need to use the word “assassination� or put fear in her heart about possible deaths in her family? I think she knows what to expect, as she lives and sees what it is like to be Mrs. Barak Obama every day.

  23. Hello! Good Site! Thanks you! mewkoyaawb

  24. Andrea Payne says:

    I couldn’t argee with you more. I saw her on Oprah twice before he officially announced his candidacy. I was put off instantly by Michelle’s demeanor, the way that she emasculated her husband repeatedly during the interview and constantly interjected how she runs the household. That made me think… well, if you are making it clear on national television that YOU run the household daily then we know who will wear the pants if he ever makes it to the White House.

    Even in her campaign speeches on his behalf, she has time and time again began nearly all of her statements with “I” and it makes me wonder at times, who is really running… you or your husband? I want to like Barack… really I do, but I there are some issues that I don’t think he is very forceful/decided enough on… (like Osama Bin Ladin, even if he is not found to be hiding in Pakistan). But his dear betrothed, a.k.a. Mouth All Mighty is going to be his downfall I’m afraid.

  25. I breast fed my daughter till she was 14 months. Nowadays that is severly looked down on. She is 9 now. Best thing I could have ever done. Breast feed until you feel it is time to stop. So many benefits, plus you lose so many calories. I dropped all of my weight gained during pregancy. I didn’t even look like I gave birth. Do what you like.


  1. […] the firestorm erupted over my original article I responded on my personal blog, “But that really is what all of this is about. It’s about being a mother. Do you go with […]

Speak Your Mind