What are the most influential parenting blogs
Until a few years ago, the doctor of English worked full-time for a Swiss publisher, set up a parents' website for it and traveled a lot. She was a mother too, yes, but the children were mainly taken care of by her husband, who was just starting out on his own, and an au pair girl. Then came the separation, the man moved out. The bigger shock for them followed two years later, in 2011: The publishing house closed its department.
Suddenly she was unemployed and a single parent, overqualified and inflexible, 45 years old and her youngest child just two. "You hit the job market like a bomb," she says. Even after 160 applications, she did not find a new permanent position. In order not to have to apply for Hartz IV, she started her own business and has been working from home ever since. Instead of flying through Europe with colleagues, she now sat all day in her living room, which was also a playroom, dining room and study. "Without the Internet, the ceiling would have fallen on my head," says Finke. During this time she starts blogging.
On this Monday afternoon, too, she is sitting in her social flat between the bright red fitted kitchen and yucca palm trees, waiting for her children. The fact that mom is there when they come home from school is especially important to the eleven-year-old son and eight-year-old daughter. There is a short “Hello” and “Can I have the Kindle?” But that's all they want from her, and the 17-year-old goes straight into her room and closes the door.
What Finke would never do: #Advertising
So Finke has time to quickly go through the papers for the parliamentary group meeting, which begins at 6 p.m. She also checks her blog on her laptop and warms up pasta so that the children don't just eat chocolate while she's on the go. Then quickly order the school lunch for the youngest on the Internet, and when the eight-year-old doesn't know what potato pancakes are, the Google image search helps.
In this everyday life she lacks people with whom she is on the same wavelength. The contacts on the net replace her, the recognition of readers means a lot to her, the blog is growing. "Mama works" is now one of the most influential parenting blogs in Germany and has more than 100,000 visits a month. That would be enough to earn money with it, most of the big parent blogs do that. There is #advertising in the headline, and the authors recommend cloth diapers, satchels or a washing machine in the text.
Christine Finke would never do that. She doesn't want to have to worry about what advertisers like. Her favorite topics are upbringing, work-life balance and the special situation of single parents. She wants to be a mouthpiece for them, and at the latest since she published the book "Alone, Alone, Alone", she has been.
It is her great pride when she reaches influential people such as Family Minister Schwesig, her predecessor Kristina Schröder and "Heute-Journal" presenter Claus Kleber with her content. Just last week, the blogger was allowed to discuss the "Maybritt Illner" program with Labor Minister Andrea Nahles and CDU politician Jens Spahn. "That gives me the feeling: I am socially relevant." She says it in these very words.
I blog, so am I? I tweet for someone to see me? On the way to the parliamentary group meeting, Christine Finke stops in the drizzle on the Rhine bridge to take a photo. "Konstanz, now", she writes, a little later the tweet has 31 hearts. In addition, she accidentally discovers the dictation function of her smartphone, because no, the 50-year-old is not a digital native. She only uses the mobile internet for Twitter, she does everything else at home on her laptop.
Most single mothers are left to caring for their children. If they work, it is mostly in low-paying part-time jobs. These women rarely make a career, and there is no time for social engagement. And that in turn means that usually not a single single parent sits at the table when important decisions are made - although single-parent families now make up almost a fifth of all families with underage children. City Councilor Finke therefore advocates a single parent quota for politics and business.
Misogynists insult them again and again
A shitstorm suspicious idea. Radical paternal rights activists have long since chosen the blogger as one of their favorite victims. In defamatory texts and videos they argue about Finke's fuckability, which is why this criminal complaint was filed for serious insult. Her blog was hacked on the very day the author of the controversial text had to go to the police. She had to set everything up again, change all passwords and filed another criminal complaint. Is there a connection? "I have no idea," says the author, but the two events are close together in time. In packs, she currently has misogynists on the blog, whose declared aim is to silence @mama_works. They will never succeed, says Christine Finke. Hate attacks have often driven women with a feminist stance from the Internet. But with her they chose the wrong person, she believes. "Where there is a lot of headwind, you can sail better," says the blogger from Lake Constance. Wind also creates waves. And that's what she knows about.
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