Sunday, November 16, 2008

Babywearing Momma

I am a babywearing momma. Ever since Mekhi was a newborn I have carried him. I own several carriers including: a pouch, a Bjorn, a Mobywrap and a Baby Hawk Mei Tai carrier. Each one has served me well and as you can see in the picture I still carry Mekhi. Last night on Twitter I was alerted by Jessica to a new ad on The ad implies that moms wear babies to be "cool." and babywearing causes pain. In my experience babywearing does not hurt or require the use of pain killers. Mommas have carried babies for centuries on their backs- working and traveling great distances. I have even exercised with Mekhi on my back! My immediate reaction to the ad was that it is a poorly researched marketing campaign that is not supportive of babywearing. Clearly I am not the only one that feels this way.

Last night the ad launched a firestorm on Twitter, in less than an hour it was the no.2 discussed topic in the platform. Take a look at this video of last night's tweets compiled by Katja. Twitter is still running wild about the ad and my post is one of many in the blogosphere regarding this topic.

Ironically, November 14 - 18 is International Babywearing Week. I can only imagine what is going to happen as more mommas get wind of the ad campaign.

So, what can you do?

1.Visit and view the ad.
2.Send an email if the ad offends you too.
3.Write a blogpost and alert your readers.
4.Ask them to take the above steps too.

It is my hope that Motrin issues an apology and retracts the ad. It saddens me that a company that I trust made such a poor decision with this ad. You can read more responses about this by clicking the links below.

Ladybug Landing
New Old Moms Club
Shake The Salt
School Teacher by Day, Superhero by Night
The Crunchy Domestic Goddess
Adventures in Babywearing
Deadlines and Diapers
The MacMommy
Crazy Adventures in Parenting
Small Dots
It's All About The Hat
Mom Most Traveled
Keep It Classy

ETA: This evening Kathy Widmer VP of Marketing - Pain, Pediatrics, GI, Specialty McNeil Consumer Healthcare sent an email apology to Katja (the PR maven responsible for the great Motrin Moms video) and Liz of Mom-101 (who happens to be an ad exec). The Motrin site is now down to retract the ad. But here it is if you are interested in seeing what all the fuss is about.

If you have ever doubted the power of Mommy Bloggers, please be doubtful no more. I personally am happy with the outcome of this "movement." A true example of advocacy at its best.

Kudos to all the Moms that spoke out.

Edited Monday to add: now has an apology up regarding the ad. Never doubt yourself, Mommies are powerful!


virtualredhead said...

Wow, talk about an advertising FAIL. I'm not sure that an apology is necessary, but Motrin should definitely reexamine how they gather info on what will appeal to their target market.

This reminds me of those terrible Brooke Shields VW ads that seem to mock the very women they're trying to sell to. So bizarre.

Shynea @ Penny Pinching Diva said...

I am a soon to be baby wearer myself, and I can't wait until I do. I have heard nothing but good things about the Mei Tai carriers. Matter of fact, that is on my Christmas list this year. LOL I wish I had it in time to participate in this campaign. Even though I don't have one, I will blog about it. You are right. For centuries women have carried their babies on their back. Especially if they had to work outside farming. There is no medial backing behind their ad. If anything, I think that all of the different kinds of slings that they have out now would do wonders on your back. It has to be so much more comfortable to have your child fit snugly inside a carrier rather then slung on the side of your hip. (Uneven weight balance.)

Take care and thank you for this post.

Katja of said...

It is unbelievable that this came out on the babywearing week!
I did a video of moms' comments on Twitter about this ad:

Erin said...

Great blog! It is unbelievable that Motrin would run such an ad, especially during this week.
I love your photo.. it reminds me that I need to take a more recent babywearing photo.

T.Allen-Mercado said...

Thanks for sharing this. I am beyond the baby-wearing stage, but as an advocate for attachment parenting this disturbs me greatly. I will certainly view the campaign and address the folks at Motrin.

I also have to agree with Virtularedhead on the Brooke Shields/VW ads. Really, what is that about?!

Luxe Tips said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Luxe Tips said...

I deleted my earlier post because of typos! oops! Well I really do believe that Motrin did not do the appropriate research when executing this ad campaign. Wraps are so convenient and a life saver for Moms! I carry luxe baby in her Ultimate Baby Wrap all the time. It is very comfortable. I have never felt the need to take Motrin because of back or shoulder pain from wearing a wrap. Actually it does not hurt at all. What type of wrap are you wearing in the picture?

Keep It Classy, Jen said...

Great post! Glad to see all of us banding together...whether it was poor research or pure ignorance it was not well received!

Cindi ~ Moomettesgram said...

You both look so happy in your picture ~ definitely not a picture of someone in pain! Thanks for sharing!

My thoughts on the Motrin ad ~ Advertising Gone Wrong ~ Twitter Moms Sound Off about Motrin

Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting said...

I think the saddest part about the whole thing is that they decided to release it the week of celebrating babywearing yet didn't research the REASON women wear their babies before making their campaign. Whomever did their 'research' needs a pink slip in a bad bad way.

Thanks for linking to my post! :)

Vodka Mom said...

excellent post, and kudos to you for being proactive!!! I salute you!

Ms. Bar B: said...

Just when I thought the two of you couldn't get any cuter =).

I agree. I am all for babywearing. I most certainly wore a lot of Miss J, and it had NOTHING to do with being cool, but everything to do with convenience and wanting to have my little one close to me.

Wear on momma, wear on!!

Lisa @ Serah's said...

I can't believe that Motrin would say that. The only way I can see it hurting your back is if you have a weak back or back pain caused from injury to begin with which means you need to work out your back muscles or not be carrying anything at all. I don't have kids but I've carried my friends children with no back problems.

Meera said...

Great post! I wore all of my babies (sometimes both twins at once) and never had a problem with pain. As long as everything is adjusted right, baby wearing feels great. They are so desperate with this ad. I bet the so-called creative geniuses behind it never wore their babies, if they even had any to begin with.

Jyl @ MommyGossip said...

Love your pic. I, too, wrote a post. Both me and my hubby wore one and loved it. Never even thought I needed a "Motrin." Wow!

Isn't the uniting of moms everywhere amazing? I am loving watching us band together and take a stand. It'll be interesting to see how Motrin responds.

Lorie said...

How great that you are standing up for something that you are passionate about! And how great that you carry your baby around like that!

fly tie said...

what madness.

while i don't doubt that baby wearing is becoming fashionable (that's just the way things tend to go in our society), it certainly doesn't mean that it's *just* done to be in fashion. and based on everything i've read on the subject, not only is baby wearing *not* hard on the body, it's quite sensible.

adorable picture.

Adventures In Babywearing said...

That is such a pretty mei tai!! I've of course blogged about all the babywearing news today!


Gina said...

I had to blog about it too. Motrin, WTF?

Greedy Corporate bigwig: How can we raise our sales?

Slimy Immoral Underling: Maybe if we can undermine the confidence of new moms. It worked for the formula companies and when the capitalist healthcare market decided to oppose midwifery.

GCB: Great idea! But who can we target?

SIU: Baby wearing. Women have done it since the beginning of time, but I am sure we can attack it from some angle-we can definitely go passive-aggressive...

Candice said...

I've got you linked from my post!
I'm editing now with an update on Motrin's response.

Candice said...

Whoops, I guess you don't know where my blog is if I don't tell you!

Gina said...

Heh heh, nice to meet you, too. And I may be a bit crunchy now, but it took me eight years to get that way LOL

Mmmm...Tastes Good said...

Morning! Happy Monday. You were above me on SITS roll call so I'm swinging by to check out your blog. Off to read.... :)

Cindy said...

Although a day later I posted a link to yours-talk about advertising suicide!

Denene@MyBrownBaby said...

How offensive to suggest that moms wear their babies to be cool... Like Meera, I do wonder if the people who created that campaign ever had children... for shame.

Okay, how cute do you and Mekhi look in this picture?!

Go mommy bloggers! Changing the world one post (and twitter!) at a time...

ali said...

First of all, the photo of you and Mekhi? Adorable! Secondly, that Motrin commercial? Ouch. Yeah. Bad move.

mommypie said...

Wow, I'm really sorry I missed this last night. I carried my daughter in a sling every day for a LONG time. She came to work with me until she was 18 months and spent a great amount of time in that sling. I attribute that bonding experience, in large part, to her well-adjusted, easy-going nature today, and wouldn't change a thing.

Speaking for mysself, I never experienced any PAIN wearing her. Women have been wearing their babies since the dawn of time -- how ridiculous is Motrin? Please.

Julie@Cool Mom Guide said...

They haven't seen my hubby wearing baby. SO (not) fashionable!

Petula said...

I read about this on someone else's blog and believe the ad is a bit outrageous. I'm glad babywearing moms are taking a stand. I wore all of my children, except one, and never found it to be painful where I needed to take something for it.

lilialately said...

I know I'm a bit behind the curve on this...been in the burbs again, but I was so outraged, I had to stay up and write a post even though I promised my husband, just one more blog to catch up on then I'll come to bed...

CailinMarie said...

Wow! I have been out of the loop! Shame on them - Motrin - and hugs and kisses to all the girls who are wearing their babies and supporting others that do so. It is SO GOOD for you and for your baby. I have worn five, for different amounts of time, and I think it is such a gift to be able to do so. Go girl power!

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