It happens every year – around Mother’s Day, we have to wade through a parade of sickly sweet sentiment reminding us of the fact that all women who have given birth are saints.
Saints who like cupcake paraphernalia, slippers, high tea and Andrea Bocelli CDs, according to Marketing HQ Australia.
It’s always a little sickening.
But this year, one marketing company in the US has stepped up the sentiment even further, with their Hardest Job in the World ad.
If you’ve not seen it, you clearly don’t have an internet connection, social media presence, or watch commercial TV in the morning. Well done you.
In a nutshell, a company puts an ad out for a job, interviews applicants and describes working conditions which sound inhumane: no breaks, no days off, standing up most of the time, increase in workloads during holiday periods, blah blah.
Guess what, guys? They are describing a Mother. I know: clever.
Come on, now. Surely women aren’t silly enough to fall for this blatant attempt to tug at the heart strings and get them to buy, buy, buy?
It’s as transparent as the TV ads where a size 6, 20-year-old mum of three in a sparkling white house feels all warm and fulfilled inside because finally, she’s found the right surface cleaner, saving her kids from a childhood of manky surfaces and Evil Germs. That’s the way to empowerment, ladies!
Except – women did fall for it. All over social media, women shared the video, with captions such as “OMG sooo true lol”; many admitted they had shed a tear. Yet more tagged their friends so that they could bond over how they had thought no-one, NO-ONE, understood what it was like and now FINALLY this nice marketing corporation was telling it like it is.
Oh, they understand. They understand that to get the mum market onside is to get the big bucks. (The ad was for greeting cards, by the way.)
But what about the dads? Are they not co-parents, generally? Or are they, as marketing-world would have us believe, bumbling fools who just break things and do dodgy DIY jobs? I don’t know any of those men. I know committed hardworking dads in around the same numbers as I know committed, hardworking mums. I also know rubbish dads, and rubbish mums.
Also – it’s not a job. Being a wife isn’t a job. Being a sister isn’t a job, or a daughter, or a friend – or a parent.
And guys, if you haven’t slept or sat down since your pre-schooler was born, you need to get yourself to a GP, because that’s not common-garden parenting.
If I was a rocket scientist, surgeon, activist, world leader, doctor, or a member of any of the many professions which seek to make life better (I’m not, I’m a Web Wrangler, – I know, boo hiss. But I’m a mum too, so I must be a saint, right? Oh, the conundrum!) I’d be a bit grumpy about this ad. Because let’s be honest, your average mum at the park would be a little kurfuffled if asked to perform brain surgery, while a brain surgeon could probably wrangle a kid for a few years until they left home.
Just stop it with the patronising nonsense, please, ad companies. And stop advertising bloody Yummy Mummy cupcakes and day spas. They are rubbish and most mums would prefer vodka and a few hours of peace and quiet.