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Controversial Time cover sparks debate about "attachment parenting"

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The new Time Magazine cover causing quite a stir about the image and the parenting approach it profiles (Time image)

The new Time Magazine cover is sparking plenty of heat about both the image and the parenting style it espouses.

The picture shows a beautiful young woman with her 3-year- old son suckling her exposed breast and the Internet is abuzz about what's being construed by some some as overly racy and sexual, especially for a traditional publication.

"You put a lady with her boob hanging out on Time Magazine and a kid attached to it, I think it's a very provocative picture," opined Ross and Burbank co-host Luke Burbank.

"Really? This was a big story on the Internet? The Internet where there's almost nothing that's too obscene to be displayed or videotaped or tweeted what's obscene about this? C'mon," responded co-host Dave Ross.

The picture is part of the magazine's feature on "attachment parenting," an increasingly popular approach that promotes a closer bond between parents and kids with methods such as breastfeeding longer, sleeping with children and keeping them physically attached to a parent with a sling.

Putting the picture aside, Luke and Dave are both critical of the approach.

"If I wrote a child rearing book, it would be called "My Child, My Enemy," says Luke.

"And the basic principle would be I'm really into my wife or girlfriend, the mother of my children. The kids, they're the ones on the outside."

Luke says he would call it the "anti-attachment" movement. The father of a high-school aged daughter, he argues couples that overly devote themselves to their kids end up suffering as a result.

"This is what happens in every other relationship, the mom falls in love with the kids, the parents stop having sex, the dad ends up on Craigslist, it's a disaster...Everything that made that relationship good is out the window," says Luke.

"I like this. This is the first 19th Century thought he's had," agrees Dave.

Meanwhile, Dori Monson says he's just irritated that the breastfeeding issue has turned "militant."

"I think there are some people, this mom on the front of Time magazine is probably one of them, who it doesn't matter what laws are passed protecting breastfeeding moms, they're going to want to just go farther and farther to shove it in everyone's face just to try to make some social statement," Dori says. "What does it accomplish?"

For one thing, Dori is sure, it's going to sell a lot of magazines.

Dori's listeners had similar reactions to the cover. Lisa in Seattle says, via D-mail, that the reason the photo is so creepy is because the mom has an issue with letting the child go. Adam in Tacoma says, "Just because you can, doesn't mean you should."

By Josh Kerns, My Northwest.com

Josh Kerns, MyNorthwest.com
Josh Kerns is an award winning reporter/anchor and host of KIRO Radio's Seattle Sounds (Sunday afternoons 5-6p) and a digital content producer for MyNorthwest.com.
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