Hey ladies, don’t leave it too late! On First Response and manufactured fertility panic
That piece I just linked to about shaming women into having their babies when they’re, I don’t know, aged 20-24 or something? It’s all about this: Get Britain Fertile. I wish I was kidding. Get Britain Fertile looks like it’s all sponsored by First Response (just in case you thought there wasn’t going to be a corporate angle) and it launches on the 3rd June. One of the ambassadors of the campaign (Kate Garraway) says: “I know careers and finances seem important but you only have a small fertility window. Get prepared first and make informed choices early”. Well said, Kate. She’s forgotten to mention, of course, that there will be no one to help you out with said finances when you can’t afford to feed the child you had to have in that fertility window. But that’s all under the carpet for now. (And, besides, it only applies to them, you know, them there lower class women who don’t count.) Let’s not even start on the pseudo-science upon which this campaign is based. There is no fertility panic. There is no population panic!
What there is, it seems, is a renewed attempt to get women back into the home to free up the workplace for men. Cameron et al have been pushing this for a while (see also the raft of austerity measures which have affected the employment of women to a much larger extent than men). This must be the next step.
Here’s another response (glosswatch):
According to the Daily Mail, my children should never have been born. To be fair, this is true for 99.9% of the human race but it’s always interesting to identify the various and overlapping reasons why this should be so. In this particular instance it’s because they are descended from women who had children in their forties – i.e. old ladies who left it too late.
Both my partner and I have mothers who were born to women over forty. This is because Lancashire in the 1940s was a seething hotbed of middle-class feminist extremism, where women were too busy smashing through glass ceilings to think of reproducing in timely manner. Or it might be, in my case, because my grandma came from an Irish Catholic background, didn’t believe in practising any form of contraception and had a load of other children before my mother, most of whom survived to adulthood. This is something from which I clearly benefited, having thereby got to exist, but it’s not without its drawbacks. Women such as my grandma clearly didn’t know the risks of late motherhood, such a being pregnant while not being at your maximum blooming potential. The few black and white photos we have don’t show it but let’s be honest, she probably looked well past it by the time she was having my mum – a bit like Kate Garraway in this photo. [Rest.]