A Quick Rant on the Commercialization of Mommyhood*

I'm just going to put this out there: one of my biggest parenthood fears is being that Mom that has to arm herself with a mountain of stuff just to successfully navigate running some errands with her child.

All this was brought upon by a trip to the grocery store and seeing a Mom with her toddler. Mom was pushing her cart and toddler was sitting in one of those puffy shopping cart covers. You know, one of these:

image via BabiesRUs
The idea of this just irks me in so many ways.
1- I have read studies that indicate raising your child in a germ-free bubble only increases the likelihood that the child will have asthma and/or allergies in the future. Now, I'm no scientist, but it makes sense that if you eradicate every possible germ your child will never build a tolerance to such things.
2- The damn thing seems completely pointless. The purpose of the cover is to keep the baby from touching things like shopping carts and restaurant high chairs. But this is negated by the fact that you, as a parent, touch these things to put the cover on it and then turn around and touch your baby! Unless you walk around Purell-ing yourself each time you touch your baby, you are going to transfer germs to him or her. This takes me back to point #1.
3- In putting the cover on the shopping cart (or in solo shopping expeditions, sans cover) you, the adult parent, touch the shopping cart, the self-checkout screen and countless other surfaces in your daily life, yet you don't get sick. And why is that? BECAUSE YOU WERE ALLOWED TO TOUCH GERMS AS A CHILD! And now you have a functioning immune system. Next time you see your mother, tell her "Thank you for letting me eat dirt when I was a kid."

As much as I stand behind those points, the real basis of this rant came from what I saw in the parking lot. On my way out I saw the same Mom and toddler getting into their car. Mom had lifted the child, removed the cover then sat the child back into the *gasp* unsanitized shopping cart, possibly to put the cover into her car. I'm standing there, screaming inside my head, "What's the friggin' point?"

Of course, I can't step into this woman's shoes and really know why she does anything, but the whole exercise seemed a bit stupid to me. That is all.

*This is only my opinion and I certainly can't speak for moms and moms-to-be everywhere. If you disagree with me and ohmygod, can't live without your shopping cart cover please don't be offended. Ha! Who am I kidding? I just made fun of you, to your face! Try to only be moderately offended.


  1. hehhe. i never used these with my kids (now 5 and 2) and they seem to be fine ;)

  2. This made me laugh so much! I don't understand all the gadgets that are now required for kids. My parents used to put me in a laundry basket and take me places in it and I turned out just fine.

  3. I couldn't agree more. My mom got me one of those and it sat in my closet after 1 unsuccessful attempt to use it at the grocery store. 1st, I had to carry it along with the other crap babies require, not to mention my pleasantly plump baby. 2nd, I had to not drop baby when putting the very complicated thing in the cart. 3rd, I had to figured out how to still use the germy strap to strap him in. 4th, he found spots that weren't covered and licked those. 5th, I had to get him back out. 6th, I had to figure out how to roll the thing back up. 7th, I had to put that along with the other crap in the car. I am with you on the germ thing too. My son licked the bottom of his shoe at 2 years old. You can't stop them from getting into germs and it isn't the best thing for their immune systems. Sickness is good for us periodically especially as children.

  4. What if she just considers it a fashion statement? What is there is no concern for the germs at all because she used those little wipes at the front of the grocery store to sanitize?