Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The election campaign with the inevitable question

So it's 2010 and the persistent, burning question asked of our recently promoted Prime Minister's is about her ability to really know what families need, her being barren and all. The recent ABC Q&A episode had audience members firing off a number of tragic attacks but it saddens me that this is the one that continues to get airtime. Bugger the environment, education and health - the biggest issue remains her childless status.

It was a delight to read an eloquent rebuttal by a Sydney psychotherapist in The Drum.

Apart from wondering if there are perhaps more pressing questions to ask, I was struck by how insulting, hurtful and unimaginative this question is. Not necessarily to Ms Gillard who seems to be accustomed to it, but to every man and woman who, for one reason or another, has found themselves living their lives without children.


I'd encourage you to read Siobhan Hannan's eloquent article Childlessness, a parent's best friend.

Another gem from Hannan.

Apart from wondering if there are perhaps more pressing questions to ask, I was struck by how insulting, hurtful and unimaginative this question is. Not necessarily to Ms Gillard who seems to be accustomed to it, but to every man and woman who, for one reason or another, has found themselves living their lives without children. target=-blank>the value of childfree adults in the lives of children
.

...and let's all move on from the inevitable question.

4 comments:

Meg said...

Hiya,

Sorry to be a demanding reader, but would you mind redoing your links so they link to the exact articles?

I would LOVE to read both of them.

Thank you!

I hope you are well. xx

Another Outspoken Female said...

Hi Meg - welcome back. Hope all's well with you.

Thanks for pointing out the broken link. Should be all fixed now.

Only one article. As progressive as The Drum is (for a government funded media) it's the only childless/free article I've come across on the site.

An afterthought: am currently reading Elizabeth Gilbert's newish book "Commitment" and she does a great bit about why she has chosen to not have children. I think Hannan may have recycled some of Gilbert's sentiments in the Drum article.

Meg said...

Thank you for that. I really enjoyed Hannan's article (and her byline).

Are you enjoying Commitment?

Another Outspoken Female said...

Commitment is way better than I expected. I enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love and think Liz Gilbert's TED talk was amazing. But when I heard the latest book about marriage, well, I kind of cringed. Marriage? What The? I should have trusted her skills as a story teller and researcher. Am 3/4 through (and will finish soon as its from the library as is 9/10ths of the books I read).

So thus far it gets thumbs up.

But would I get married? Not a chance!