You’re One or the Other

Parenting decisions according to Sunday night TV are either villain or saintly.
Parenting decisions according to Sunday night TV are either villain or saintly.

It’s no secret I love to fold my washing on a Sunday night and curse the infotainment dressed up as current affairs on Channels 7 and 9. Over the years this ritual has shown me that if you are mother, your parenting is up for scrutiny. If you are a father you tend to be a saint.

It is very rare that any parenting story they do actually addresses decisions that two people make together.

You see when they profile the parenting decisions that go against any norms it is the mother who is featured and she is of course – a bad mother. However when they look at how a father parents, it is usually against adversity and makes him close to saintly.

This week Sunday Night revived that old controversial chestnut – homebirth. And of course there were mothers who made ‘bad’ decisions. However if you look beyond the hype you see that what Channel 7 did was a classic case of deception.

Annie Bourgault who was featured in the story sent a letter to Sunday Night and withdrew her consent to be part of it. Her letter, published on the One Billion Rising Australia Facebook page on July 14, reveals the lengths the network will go to get the story they want. And it was not what she claims were agreed.

Annie claims they agreed to a story that was broader than what was shown. However to portray this story in the context they agreed these women would no longer be the ‘villains’ and that would not be on.

Personally what upsets me about this is that women in the media are treating other women so appallingly. It reminds me of an article I wrote once about women adopting male behaviour in the workplace rather than forging ahead with their own.

Is this an example of such?

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