She didn’t deserve it. She lives on the Upper West Side of Manhattan so of course she’s a good liberal who believes most of the liberal flapdoodle. But she made a huge mistake. She wrote a book. Not just a book, but a book on how to be a good mother. A book of scientifically established facts about babies, what they need to develop into human beings, and what happens chemically and hormonally to a woman after child birth. It’s about a mother’s love for her child and how she can’t deny it or she’ll go crazy and the baby’s development will be compromised.
The book is Being There: Why Prioritizing Motherhood in the First Three Years is Important, by Jewish Psychoanalyst Erica Komisar.
The book is excellent. Ms. Komisar was welcomed by Christian Radio States, Fox and Friends, and other conservative media. But she couldn’t get on NPR. She was rejected by the liberal media, especially in New York. She made it onto ABC’s Good Morning America but her interviewer said, “I don’t believe in the premise of your book at all. I don’t like your book.”
So what is the premise that so bothered liberals? James Taranto described it this way in the Wall Street Journal:
The premise of Ms. Komisar’s book—backed by research in psychology, neuroscience and epigenetics—is that “mothers are biologically necessary for babies,” and not only for the obvious reasons of pregnancy and birth. “Babies are much more neurologically fragile than we’ve ever understood,” Ms. Komisar says. She cites the view of one neuroscientist, Nim Tottenham of Columbia University, “that babies are born without a central nervous system” and “mothers are the central nervous system to babies,” especially for the first nine months after birth.
What does that mean? “Every time a mother comforts a baby in distress, she’s actually regulating that baby’s emotions from the outside in. After three years, the baby internalizes that ability to regulate their emotions, but not until then.” For that reason, mothers “need to be there as much as possible, both physically and emotionally, for children in the first 1,000 days.”
The regulatory mechanism is oxytocin, a neurotransmitter popularly known as the “love hormone.” Oxytocin, Ms. Komisar explains, “is a buffer against stress.” Mothers produce it when they give birth, breastfeed or otherwise nurture their children. “The more oxytocin the mother produces, the more she produces it in the baby” by communicating via eye contact, touch and gentle talk. The baby’s brain in turn develops oxytocin receptors, which allow for self-regulation at a later age.
Once upon a time that premise would have resonated well with every woman in America. That was before radical feminism declared that a woman cannot be fulfilled without a high paying professional career. The stay-at-home mom is a dead end in today’s feminist world, especially on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.
Ms. Komisar does have a well-paying professional career. Her book seems to have made feminists view her as a traitor to the cause of women in America. Whatever, it won’t be viewed that way by most mothers. She’s well qualified to write such a book.
James Taranto again:
Ms. Komisar’s interest in early childhood development grew out of her three decades’ experience treating families, first as a clinical social worker and later as an analyst. “What I was seeing was an increase in children being diagnosed with ADHD and an increase in aggression in children, particularly in little boys, and an increase in depression in little girls.” More youngsters were also being diagnosed with “social disorders” whose symptoms resembled those of autism—“having difficulty relating to other children, having difficulty with empathy.”
As Ms. Komisar “started to put the pieces together,” she found that “the absence of mothers in children’s lives on a daily basis was what I saw to be one of the triggers for these mental disorders.” She began to devour the scientific literature and found that it reinforced her intuition. Her interest became a preoccupation: “My husband would say I was a one-note Charlie,” she recalls. “I would come home and I would rant and I would say, ‘Oh my God, I’m seeing these things. I’ve got to write a book about it.’ ”