An Uncomplicated Life Blog: When You Don’t Identify With PopMom Culture


Thursday, March 21, 2019

When You Don’t Identify With PopMom Culture

Ever see a meme or something trending about motherhood and just think, "man, that's WAY off - I so don't understand that"? This is what it's like when you don't identify with popular mom culture

There's only been a few times in my life where everything aligns at exactly the same time. In this case, I had some internet friends and some real life friends talk about the exact same thing on the exact same day. And then it happened again with a different set of internet friends and a different set of IRL friends! In every instance, it elicited the same response from me: huh?! There are some things that are really trendy or popular to talk about, especially while in a group of other moms. There's quite a few of them that I just don't identify with, and stand there awkwardly, unsure of how to participate in the conversation. This post is all about those things; when you simply don't identify with popmom culture.

The headline is indeed funny... But this meme reflects a larger community of moms who husband-complain NONSTOP

The first thing I can't get behind? The constant husband complaining. Y'all, this one is BAD. Bad in what people say about their husbands, and bad as in this topic dominates mom groups. The complaining is incessant. For my mom friends with infants at home, they constantly complain about how they're the only one that gets up with the baby. That their husband sleeps all night, and then sits on the couch all morning complaining of being tired. I don't understand that - why don't you ask him for help? If he doesn't know what to do, why don't you show him? Why are you sitting around being a miserable, tired mommy martyr?! You didn't make these kids by yourself, why aren't you first asking for the help you need, and if you don't get it, demand the help you need?! 

For my friends with kids who sleep through the night, the moms have found new ways to complain about their spouses. Their husbands don't play with their kids enough, they don't do any cleaning/laundry/housework, and they don't help out with homework. One friend even commented that her husband doesn't notice when his daughter needs help tying her shoe! Shoe laces. It's devolved to the point of a shoe lace being a point of contention with husbands. For the love...

This gem is a 2-4-1! Husband bitching and Target loving. See below for my thoughts on Target

It's so hard when this becomes the topic of conversation because I just don't identify with it. My husband is up with me with the twins EVERY SINGLE TIME (partially because two babies is a two person ordeal!) even though he's the one with the job that pays all our bills. He takes all four boys for a couple hours on the weekend so that I can get some alone time. He changes all the diapers on the weekends. Hell, he'd probably lactate if he could just to lend me a hand! He does travel extensively for work, so when he is home, he pulls more than 50% of the weight so that I can catch a break. He doesn't sit around being "tired" from his workweek. When you're a parent, your workweek never ends. Five pm on a Friday doesn't mean he gets to sit back and crack a beer while I continue to do everything with the kids, and he knows that. Because he's a parent. He helped me make these kids, he helps me raise them. End of story. Yes, I've had to show him how to do certain things. Yes, he asks me questions if he doesn't know. But he still shows up and helps. Daily. 

It's popular culture to complain about how easy your husband has it, how lazy he is or how "bad" he is with your children and therefore how hard your job is, but why? If moms spent a quarter of the time they spent complaining  asking their husband for help and showing him how to be helpful, they'd be a lot happier! It's so prevalent in pop culture that I've left conversation circles and I've unfollowed mom groups just to get away from the toxicity of it. My closest friends, my sister and sister-in-law, we all spend our time talking about how awesome our husbands are with our kids. That's the type of conversation I would love to see become the norm in popmom culture.

Because all parents drink away their kids and their problems... Look at how many shares this got!

The next thing that I struggle with in popmom culture is the amount of wine people talk about consuming. It's like functional-alcoholic-levels of wine that are either talked about or actually being consumed by moms. Now, don't get me wrong! I do enjoy wine. I have no problem with a mom who wants to enjoy a glass or two (or three - get it!) It's more the culture of moms and wine. Like, bad day with the kids? Wine time! 5pm? Wine time! Toddler tantrum? Wine time! Overly tired from doing all the things your husband doesn't help you with? Wine time! I mean, c'mon. How are you even functioning? Do you have any coping skills besides alcohol? Is your life really that bad that it drives you to drink daily?! I just don't understand the constant wine consumption (or the talk of it) in popmom culture.

This one is enough to take away my mom AND blogger card: moms, why are you ALWAYS talking about Target?! Never once have I had a "spare hour" and thought, you know what? I'm just going to go cruise the aisles of Target and buy things I don't need with money I probably don't have. I have never once walked the aisles there "just to see what's there" and to look at crap. Not once. I have my list, I get what's on the list, I usually see one or two more items that should have been on my list but weren't, I check out, I leave. I don't go to the in-store Starbucks to spend $7 on a coffee that has over 500 calories in it. I don't cruise the aisles. Have you noticed Target now plays obnoxious music? They do. It makes me dislike that store even more. It used to be so quiet and peaceful... Now it's full of bright fluorescent lights and bad music.
Memes and posts like this get a big ol eye roll from me at best, and an unfollow at worst. I just don't get Target-mom-culture!

Fortunately, Target shopping doesn't dominate the conversations of my IRL friends. Boutiques and higher end shopping can, if shopping is talked about at all. Typically it's just a quick mention of where someone got something cute, and we move on. Thank God. But online and in the blogosphere? This is a regular topic of convo, everyone voices their love for killing time at the retailer and friggin memes are created about a mom and her love for Target! I secretly think it's all a marketing ploy from the corporate headquarters of the chain. Trust me, I'm from Minneapolis where it's HQ'd and know tons of people who work there. They'd totally do it. Jokes on you! Anyway, I just don't get why this one particular store is constantly, incessantly talked about in popmom culture. It's an obsession I just don't identify with. If I'm being really honest with you, I unlike mom blog pages that talk about or post Target memes. That's how much I don't identify with it.

In some ways, not identifying with these popmom culture items makes me feel like an odd mom out. When it becomes the topic of conversation in various online groups, I usually just keep scrolling. I unfollow if it's a particularly atrocious conversation. And in real life? I stand there, unsure of how to join in. Everyone would hate me if I piped up with how awesome I think my husband is, or how I dread going to Target, or how I've stopped all mid-week wine consumption because it was ruining my sleep. Misery loves company, and that's not being a team player! But I'm here to tell you that if you don't identify will all the aspects of popular mom culture, it's ok! You're still a cool mom in my eyes. And I'm totally here for any of you who want to talk about amazing husbands, the dreadful way Target clothes fit, or taking up a tea habit over alcohol.


  1. You know how I feel about this! Yesss!!
    These are the best screen grabs, too. I'm dying over here.
    It was just the other day John said to me, "Remember when we met Paige, Kirk, and Henry at the brewery and Kirk wouldn't even say hi to us before he saw Henry for a few minutes?"
    I said, "I forgot about that, but yeah!"
    "That's a good dad," John said. :)

  2. I never realized just how bad it was until I left social media and my blog for the last year. I couldn’t balance all that life took AND still have time to sift through the negative, implied negative, or downright irresponsible (shopping and spending money you don’t have to impress people I don’t like (thanks DR!) was never something I could understand. I hope to get back to my blog someday, but I struggle with what to say among the field of what’s already out there! I completely agree with this post! There’s no reason for the shaming and under-the-table insults, and it goes against all that we should be working towards as a society. (Maybe I’ve also got some work to do on the way I express my thoughts! This comment even looks a little confusing to me! LOL)

  3. I never realized this was such an issue..I am not the mom of young never involved in these circles are hearing this stuff. On instagram tho..I deal with other kind of "not so good cultures" from middle aged women...Im so ready to dump social many influencers get so full of's sad

    Thanks for sharing this!

  4. I get the dad complaining. We are still a part of a society that A: Women expect men to understand and just do the things around the house and help with the kids without having to ask, and B: while men have stepped up in a huge way and are so much more involved parents these days there is still a sort of, subculture, if you will, of men and women who still believe that it's primarily the woman's job to do all of the domestic stuff so yeah, women are complaining. But I also understand where you're coming from. Women seem to be wary of asking their husbands for help. Where does that come from? centuries of us having to do it alone I guess.
    Talk about the wine though. I am lucky if I get to have a glass or two on a Friday night after my kids go to their dad's house for the weekend. Have you heard of Dry January? It's a British thing and apparently it really is a thing where parents will commit to the whole month of January not drinking a drop of alcohol because they consume so much of it every other month of the year. I've read blog posts about it that have had me wondering what is going on. It sounds like it's on the border of alcoholism but I don't really know.
    I haven't seen any target memes. I shop at Target all the time. It's one of my favorite stores but I don't go there unless I'm planning to spend money and that's usually on food and the kids. I just prefer it over Walmart. And in my town there aren't a lot of other choices. But I've never seen these memes and not had any conversations about Target. Guess it doesn't consume my life that much lol.
    I do, however, stay out of online conversations so I could be missing a lot of stuff. It does seem to be getting way too toxic these days.

  5. I totally agree with you! Oh my gosh, the husband bashing--I just don't get it. My husband isn't a lazy loser who succumbs like a wuss to a "man cold". Can't relate. And somehow I survive motherhood with five kids without coffee or wine so I hate when other moms assume it's something I need to survive. Can't relate. I am also always SHOCKED by how much people spend at Target. I mean, I like Target, but I rarely have time to peruse the aisles and never have the money to mindlessly buy things! Can't relate.

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  7. I think it is so sad. I don't think people realize that when they continually feed themselves these popular sayings, they are cementing negative thoughts about their husbands, family, and life into their minds. This is a great post.

  8. What I great post. I feel like no one is talking about this!

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  10. Thank you for downloading this directly from my brain! :) I would add the memes from moms talking about how awful their kids are. Yes, they are super challenging sometimes, but as kids that is basically their job--to learn how to be in the world by testing out their limit and emotions. I get frustrated just as much as the next mom but some of the memes feel downright mean.