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Fri Oct 24 20:07:20 SAST 2014

My boobs are off limits

Jackie May | 21 May, 2012 00:07
Jackie May. File photo.
Image by: Times LIVE / Times Media Group

It's been a while since I paid attention to Time magazine, but last week it was impossible to ignore.

I suspect the editor of this US magazine has had to up his game on issues of general interest since media doyenne Tina Brown took over as editor-in-chief at Newsweek.

A recent front page story of the latter publication featured a feminist response to EL James' "mummy porn", Fifty Shades of Grey.

Then, 10 days ago, Time published a series about attachment parenting. This kind of parenting "espouses baby-wearing and co-sleeping, among other things", according to Time. "Attachment parents are very attached - in terms of proximity, among other things - to their kids."

The cover depicted a mother, Jamie Lynne Grumet, "looking every bit the supermodel in superskinny jeans, ballet flats and a strappy tank top with the neckline tugged down to make way for . her nearly four-year-old son", read the caption. You may have read about the ensuing breast-feeding debate.

My youngest child is four, and it's been very long since I breast-fed. Often there is behaviour in my home which might have a causal link to her abrupt weaning. Who knows? Certain issues are best left suppressed, and dealt with by my children when they're old enough to afford therapy.

But it wasn't these stories I was concerned with, it was the one on Time.com on Thursday that got me ready to pay for therapy . I was both mortified and fascinated by the story headlined: "Why cellphones are bad for parenting" .

I am guilty of sitting at the table checking Twitter while my children eat dinner, or being on my phone while my daughter struggles with homework. The other day, I was told that I am always on my phone. In other words, I never pay attention.

Writer Dominique Browning warns "parents have to break the phone habit before it is too late . I am talking about giving more thought to missed opportunities for communicating with a child. For simply being with her. Quietly."

Then there's something else to worry about: "smartphone face" - that chin sag due to long periods spent looking down at your phone. The prospects of angry kids and decaying looks have got me planning far more time with my kids.

But they aren't getting anywhere near my breasts.

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