'The cover image was an outtake': Time's attachment parenting mom slams magazine for its 'confrontational and detached' portrayal of her family
19:54 GMT, 18 September 2012
Jamie Lynne Grumet, who posed on the cover of TIME breastfeeding her three-and-a-half-year-old son has slammed the magazine for its portrayal of her, and attachment parenting.
The mother of two, 26, from Los Angeles, told ABC News: 'My intentions were to help relieve the stigma attached to breast feeding past infancy, but the photo I saw wasn't the one that we were trying to pose for. It made me really, really sad'.
Mrs Grumet explained that the cover image was an 'outtake' from the shoot, which when placed alongside the words 'Are You Mom Enough' looked 'confrontational and detached.'
Blind sided: Jamie Lynne Grumet, 26, who posed on the cover of TIME breastfeeding her three-and-a-half-year-old son has slammed the magazine
'I definitely don't agree
with the cover, and I don't agree with the article,' she said.
To set the record straight, Mrs Grumet
decided to pose on the cover of this month's Pathways to Family Wellness
Magazine, which advocates attachment parenting.
Unlike the standing TIME cover, which showed her breastfeeding son Aram
as he stood on a seat to reach her, the new image shows her seated with
the now four-year-old suckling her breast while husband Brian and adopted son Samuel look on.
'The cover photo wasn't what we were trying to pose for. It made me really, really sad'
Mrs Grumet said the new cover portrayed toddler breast-feeding more realistically, by including her family, and explaining the practice in a way she had expected the TIME article would, she said.
While many blogs and forums have accused the mother of 'milking the moment,' Ms Grumet denies the online accusations.
the ignorance of not understanding full-term breast feeding – and that
it's normal in other cultures, just not here,' she said.
we focused all that attention onto issues that really do matter, like
the children who don't have parents, who don't have food…,' she added.
Unhappy: Mrs Grumet explained that the cover image was an 'outtake' from the shoot, which when placed alongside the words 'Are You Mom Enough' looked 'confrontational and detached'
Mrs Grumet, who was breastfed by her own mother until the age
of six, says that she will not stop breastfeeding her toddler until
he turns five and she has aimed to provide the same type of support to Samuel, who was adopted from Ethiopia in November of 2010.
As an advocate of attachment parenting – a style that includes co-sleeping with a child, constant
skin-on-skin contact, and extended breastfeeding – photographer Lori Dorman who captured the family for Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine, said that she was trying to 'correct the misperception that was created on the TIME cover' which was slammed by critics when it was published in May.
The photographer added: 'Its message was that nursing a
three-year-old was outrageous and inappropriate, when in fact nursing a
three-year-old is a normal, healthy activity in the world today.'
Talking about her collaboration
with Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine, Mrs Grumet said that she was
happy with the way the publication had addressed the theory of
attachment parenting and was disappointed with the reaction TIME's
She wrote on her blog: 'The publication
interviewed me a couple of weeks after the TIME cover and decided to
deconstruct the cover and display breastfeeding past infancy in an
Controversy: The mother set the record straight with a cover on this month's Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine
Staisfied: Mrs Grumet said that she was happy with the way the Pathway's publication had addressed the theory of attachment parenting and was disappointed with the reaction TIME's coverage provoked
'The bizarre attention from TIME was still going strong when we agreed to do this shoot, but this relationship with Pathways was supported with API and we knew we were in good hands.
'The article is wonderful, we really are so thankful that there are non-profit magazines like Pathways trying to educate people about conscious parenting.'
She is completely aware of how
unorthodox the parenting technique, which was originally coined by U.S.
pediatrician Dr William Sears, can be perceived. But she strongly
believes her methods are 'biologically normal.'
are people who tell me they're going to call social services on me or
that it's child molestation', she said. 'I really don't think I can
reason with those people.'
And she believes that the more people see it, the more it will become 'normal in our culture.'
'There seems to be a war going on
between conventional parenting and attachment parenting,' she continued.
'That's what I want to avoid. I want everyone to be encouraging. We're
not opposing teams.
A phrase coined by pediatrician William SearsThe philosophy is based on the principles of attachment theory in developmental psychology It
suggests that a strong emotional bond with caregivers from an early
stage can enhance a child's socio-emotional development and well-beingBreastfeeding into toddlerhood and beyond, co-sleeping, and 'baby wearing' are encouragedDr
Sears' The Baby Book, first published in 1992, promotes eight
principles, including: Feed with Love and Respect, Respond with
Sensitivity, Use Nurturing Touch, Ensure Safe Sleep, Provide Consistent
Loving Care, Practice Positive Discipline
'We all need to be encouraging to each other and I don't think we're doing a very good job at that.'
technique also involves parents co-sleeping with their children and
wearing them in a sling to ensure they remain physically close to the
Despite telling Good Morning America that TIME's final cover photo she saw wasn't in fact the one she 'was trying to pose for, the mother earlier admitted that she 'did understand' that the cover shoot was intended to spark controversy,
'We knew exactly what we were going to get into,' she wrote on her blog.
TIME magazine meanwhile stated it is pleased that the cover 'encouraged serious debate over these important issues that continue to face millions of parents'.
It is not the first time the parenting technique has come under the microscope in recent times.
Blossom actress Mayim Bialik recently
wrote a book called Beyond The Sling about how she breastfeeds her three-year-old son and allows
her six-year-old to sleep on a mattress on the floor with her and her
Dr Bialik, who has a PhD in neuroscience, told Newsok.com: 'When we treat our children
kindly and expect love and give love, we hopefully are raising children that
then expect that and give that to the world around them.'
She kept both of her children close to her person for many
of their first months by placing them in a sling across her body every day.
A $35 sling was used for both Miles, six, and Fred, three, who were
kept laid down rather than upright to ensure the baby kept its natural shape.
The couple have also allowed their children to develop correct
toilet habits as soon as they realise their body’s natural signals.
Dr Bialik said in regards to diaper use: ‘You’re basically
training your child to use their pants as a bathroom and two years later we
have them turn around and do all sorts of complicated manipulations to get them
Alanis Morissette recently revealed that she will continue to breastfeed her son Ever until he tells her he wants to stop.
on Good Morning America, the singer, 37, tackled the debate on
attachment parenting, addressing the effect of the Time magazine cover,
and the stages of 'appropriate' childhood development.