Modern parents spend far more time with their children than parents did in the 1960s. Yes, a mother reading work emails at the playground has briefly stopped interacting with her child. But Kamenetz — a mother of two — says if she couldn’t do that, she’d need to be at the office.
We know it’s crucial to stimulate and speak to young children, and our generation of parents complies to a possibly unprecedented — and exhausting — degree. Kamenetz notes that we need occasional breaks from this. She bemoans “an ideological stance that judges mothers for not being fully available to their children at all times and that scapegoats working-class families in particular.”