Parenting Taboos – Brave Parents Share Uncomfortable Truths

Rufus Griscom and Alisa Volkman are married and the parents of three boys. They co-founded Babble, a parenting site, and have spent nearly a decade growing the site to attract more than 4 million viewers a month. In the following video they discuss several parenting taboos they experienced in the early years as young parents:

  • You can’t say you didn’t love your baby in the first minute (for them, love was not constant from the get-go, rather it grew over time).
  • You can’t talk about how lonely having a baby can be (58 percent of mothers report feelings of loneliness, 67 percent of those are most lonely when their kids are 0 to 5 years old, less than 50 percent of new parents live near family members).
  • You can’t talk about your miscarriage (despite 15 to 20 percent of pregnancies resulting in miscarriage, shame often accompanies the experience – 74 percent of women felt the miscarriage was partly their fault. There is also no ceremony or community support for the loss – like a funeral).
  • You can’t say your “average happiness” has declined since having a child.

griscom volkman chart of happiness

The studies vs. their own personal moment-to-moment experiences:

griscom volkman marital happiness

Watch their talk below:

To me, a lot of what they discussed touched on the idea of happiness vs. meaning. Emily Esfahani Smith wrote an insightful piece about this a little while ago in The Atlantic. I highly recommend reading her article after watching Rufus and Alisa’s talk.

– Nikita