It’s official. Everyone is a Jewish mother. Well, insofar as every mother has an inflated sense of the absolute kvell-worthy perfection of their children.
In a recent Christian Science Monitor story about why we want to eat our babies (more on that in a minute), they refer to a study that found that mothers rank their babies poop as less disgusting than other’s number two. How’s that for unconditional love?
This preference for their poop is linked to the ways in which mother’s initial connection to their babies is largely through our noses. A new German study has found that the smells of newborns elicit “activation in the women’s’ brains’ reward circuits.” This is the same circuit that feels pleasure when we eat truffle fries or smoke a cigarette — the addictive one. Not all smells trigger this circuit, explained one of the study’s authors, “only those associated with reward, such as food or satisfying a desire, cause this activation.”
They found far more activity in these reward circuits in mothers vs. non-mothers and determined that the sensation moms get when sniffing their baby feels a lot sniffing a favorite food. And this, my friends, is why we say things like, “Oy, look at those pulkes, I just want to eat them up.”
Here’s what I want to know: when did parenting become entitlement to impose young children on people around you in places which were, not long ago, understood to be adult spaces?
A mom recently posted on a local listserv, called Park Slope Parents, that she’s offended by a neighborhood pub with a sign on its door that bans children after 5 p.m.
“So, does anyone know if this practice is legal? Obviously kids can’t order a pint, but what about a burger?” she posted.
She goes on to explain that regardless of the ban’s legality, she doesn’t plan on going back, and adds, in what seems to be a huffy tone, “There are many other places where my business would be welcome.” Hesitant though I am to step into something that might get me flamed on this listerv, to which thousands of people subscribe, I just had to respond.