Critics of mommy bloggers say we pat ourselves on the back for performing a basic biological task.
Mother Nature programmed many animals to eat their young, so I believe kudos are in order for each day my children survive without bite marks.
It’s a tough job. The lucky ones limp away with gray hair, maybe an eye twitch, paranoia and addiction to caffeine. Others aren’t so lucky — they don’t even get to limp away.
As a teen, adults warned me about those bad seeds who would try to force drugs into my veins, pour alcohol down my throat, or goad me into wearing nail polish. To my disappointment, I didn’t see a solitary joint, take a single swig of wine, become an accessory in a misdemeanor, or hear naughty tales of wedded bliss until I joined the secret society of mothers.
Push forth life and all will be revealed.
It seems suburban mothers are the new drug addicts of my generation; the drug of choice is little Timmy’s prescription ADD medication. A black market for our children’s drugs has popped up in our neighborhoods, Little League games and churches.
Believe me, I’ve seen it. Who knew Susan next door could get me my fix with a side of chocolate chip cookies?
Drugs like Adderall and Ritalin are stimulants to those who don’t actually live with diagnoses of ADD or ADHD. Dr. Oz (I just aged 10 years by quoting him) says he’s found a 264 percent increase in women aged 22 to 44 who are using a prescription stimulant.
ADHD medications sing a siren song to lure mothers out of their Ivory Homes, promising side effects like heightened energy, intense focus, weight loss and an increased sex drive. It all seems too good to be true … because it is. Adderall is highly addictive, can be destructive to the heart, and may be deadly to abusers.
Teens in school usually did drugs to be cool, escape life or experiment. Mothers are taking drugs to survive the day, keep up with the mounting pressure to make stuff on Pinterest, and appear to be the perfect woman — thin and organized.
The addiction and abuse are ignored because mom is being productive, and she doesn’t fit the stereotype of your “normal” druggie. We thought June Cleaver was the perfect mother; turns out, she was just tripping on Beav’s ADHD medication.
What does it say about motherhood — or should I say mothers born in the ’80s/’90s? Are we weaker? Were those before us drinking the cooking sherry or mainlining whiskey in secret? No, they had grit; we have prescription drugs.
When did my generation get to be so dependent? Brad Lamm, author of “How to Help the One You Love,” writes: “Every generation has an amphetamine crisis, and it’s usually driven by women.”
We are our own worst enemies, constantly competing to be the best woman out there, even if it comes at a high cost.
This column isn’t to discourage mothers from turning to medications when needed, especially for their children. I know that, when placed in the right hands, on the correct tongue, Adderall can change a life, even a family. Millions of adults go through life without realizing they live with ADHD and need these medications to level out life.
This isn’t even an article on the over-prescribing of drugs. I just want to understand why in the last 10 years this country has seen a triple-digit increase on Adderall abuse among mothers.
I don’t turn my nose up at women who swallow Adderall. I understand why they do it, why the idea of addiction is much more appealing than failure. I want so badly to skip over the hard parts, but that button doesn’t exist outside of a Samsung remote.
There isn’t a quick fix that comes without side effects. My advice to those looking down at Timmy’s pills: You can’t pile nonessentials on your shoulders. You have to focus on the small mercies — like the fact that you didn’t eat your children today.
Join Meg Sanders’ blog at www.hersutah.com.