Feminist author Jill Filipovic suggested on Twitter this week that stay-at-home moms set a bad example for their children because their decision “not to work” sends the message that they are not ambitious.
After sparking fury with her comments, she followed up with an apology for her “tone.”
What are the details?
The Daily Wire reported that “Filipovic was reacting to a post from Slate concerning a man who was upset that his wife wanted to be a stay-at-home mother,” and that “Slate’s advice was to be more understanding with his wife.”
“This is good advice, but man I feel for this letter-writer, because it’s exactly how I would feel if my spouse decided they wanted to be a stay-at-home parent,” Filipovic wrote in the launch of her lengthy thread. “Also… is it really ONLY her decision whether to quit working when she’s then going to be entirely dependent on him?”
“I realize this is like the third rail of the Mommy Wars, but yeah, lots of super-ambitious people marry other super-ambitious people because they’re attracted to ambition,” she continued. “I would have a really, really hard time being married to a spouse who chose not to work.”
Filipovic did not stop there, adding, “And now I am really going to get myself yelled at, but I also think the issue of example-setting for a kid is a totally fair one. What example are you setting when dad works for pay and mom does the care work at home? Lots of reasons not to want to set that example for a child.”
And now I am really going to get myself yelled at, but I also think the issue of example-setting for a kid is a tot… https://t.co/pyBt7FadCW
— Jill Filipovic (@Jill Filipovic)1615393797.0
That comment was met with fierce backlash. A wave of stay-at-home mothers pushed back against Filipovic’s assertions, along with people who expressed how grateful they were to be raised by stay-at-home moms. Husbands had choice words for the feminist, too.
Attorney Matthew Kolken told Filipovic, “My late wife was a stay at home mom. She lived for and ultimately died loving our children. It was her full time job. I can write so much more on this subject, but suffice it to say that belittling her decision to prioritize our children over ‘work’ f***ing pisses me off.”
One person called Filipov’s comments “unnecessarily condescending and dismissive,” and another argued, “I mean, if she genuinely wants to stay at home and raise her kid, I guess she’s setting the example that feminism should be about choice and that caregiving takes intelligence, hard work, and yes, ambition?”
On Thursday, Filipov tweeted, “Just want to take a sec to very sincerely apologize for the tone of this thread, which came across as far more flippant and judgmental than I intended. I maintain that it’s good and important to defend all the good that comes from mothers working. But my phrasing was beyond bad.”
She explained herself further before adding, “I could have approached this with more nuance and generosity, and for failing to do that, I am sorry.”