Today a fellow blogger (thank you A(nother) Lawyer Writes) alerted me to an interesting interview in a Sunday paper. The interview was with Brooke Magnanti, otherwise known as the former high-class prostitute Belle du Jour. She was asked why she didn’t blog as much any more and her reply was that most blogs are now written by right wing nutters and yummy mummies. I don’t think I’m the former (although what a few more years in St Albans might do to me I don’t know), but am I the latter? It has prompted a certain amount of self-analysis. I’ve made a conscious effort not to turn my blog into a missive from suburbia by a middle class mother but I have still been called a yummy mummy. It’s a label I feel both dismayed and secretly pleased by. No one likes to be labelled, particularly as something that isn’t always granted positive attributes. On the other hand, how positively lovely if I were one! You can see my dilemma.
So am I a yummy mummy? I don’t drive a Chelsea tractor (but I do drive a Mercedes), I don’t do much baking (but when I do my preference is for pretty cupcakes), and I don’t live in a Cath Kidston floral-coated world (but the catalogue appears on my doormat most weeks). Oh, and I live in St Albans. I rest my case, I hear some of you say.
Here are a few definitions of ‘yummy mummy’ from urbandictionary.com and my accompanying comments:
“A young, sexually attractive mother. There is an important age distinction between a yummy mummy and a MILF. Yummy mummys are younger than 30, while MILFs are older than 30.”
(As a 34-year-old this one is slightly insulting – not only does it effectively define me as old but ‘yummy mummy’ starts to read ‘desperate housewife’. Interesting subject becomes object. Hmph. Clearly written by a man.)
“An attractive, healthy, and very sexy mother! Usually a young woman or sometimes a really gorgeous and hot middle aged mother. Yummy mummies usually wear trendy clothes, have great hairstyles and always look fabulous.”
(I like this one. I like the first line A LOT. The exclamation mark almost turns it into a term of endearment! Unfortunately it then goes on to spoil the good work by suggesting a woman can be defined by her hairstyle and clothes and nowt else. Not an original slant and unsurprising, but still mildly irritating.)
“Glamorous girls who shop and lunch their way through pregnancy, proudly displaying their little bumps like the latest designer handbag. They generally see pregnancy as an opportunity to buy a whole new wardrobe with a team of personal shoppers on hand.”
(Pretty derogatory this one. Think Paris Hilton and swap the doggie for a buggy. Think vacuous waste of space.)
“A mother who is interested in looking after herself as well as her family while taking pride in her appearance. She doesn’t have to be gorgeous just a little interested in being mildly fabulous!”
(Hello! A mention of ‘family’. So the yummy mummy does think/exist outside her little bubble of floral prints and Boden.)
“A yummy mummy is a mum who takes care of her wellbeing. She takes regular time out for herself and fills her life with people who inspire, motivate and support her. A yummy mummy does not judge other mothers, but shows kindness, compassion and cares for others.”
(This one starts off well but then tells a blatant falsehood – “a yummy mummy does not judge other mothers”. For me the unpleasant side of yummy mummy isn’t about the individual, it’s about the clique and like any good sorority the clique judges those who don’t conform.)
Let’s be honest, I aspire to be a yummy mummy. Aspire means I still have some way to go. So in the meantime I’ll feel a warm inner glow in my Hunters if the label is applied but I’ll outwardly choke on my cappuccino.