Time Magazine & “Psychotic Nut Job” Mothers

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"Psychotic nut jobs." That's the term used in a recent Time magazine Healthland piece about mothers who kill their newborns.

Time, have we not already been over the issue of mental health stigma and poor reporting with you?

Good grief. I'm appalled.

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About Katherine Stone

is the founder & editor of Postpartum Progress. She was named one of the ten most influential mom bloggers of 2011, a WebMD Health Hero and one of the top 25 parent bloggers using social media for social good. She also writes the Fierce Blog, and a parenting column for Disney's Babble.com.

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Comments

  1. Sadly, I think even the respected magazines have become more and more sensational in their headlines and reporting, in an effort to stay relevant.
    What makes them relevant is balance, perspective, thoroughness, and insight.
    I’m sorry that Time has taken this path.

  2. Katherine Stone/Post says:

    Thanks for your comment. I'm sure you're right. I guess I must be naive in that I still expect certain major media outlets, like Time, to use more care in writing about mental illness and to act role models on this. I realize that infanticide is a very tough subject, but that kind of language was so unneeded.
    What upsets me is that infanticide is so often an unnecessary tragedy. New mothers who are ill or desperate, or the people around them, need to feel safe in reaching out for medical help immediately so such things can be prevented where possible. I doubt calling such women "psychotic nut jobs" helps them feel the kind of safety needed to make that call.

  3. How are moms supposed to feel safe and supported when magazines such as Time, is coming up with these kind of headlines! No wonder why moms are afraid, worried and hesitate to reach out for the help they deserve and need!! Almost completely speechless!

  4. Here's the part that really gets me (I mean, besides "not necessarily [but maybe!] the psychotic nut jobs we think they are"): in one paragraph about the women profiled we have "None displayed obvious symptoms of mental illness", followed in the very next paragraph with "Almost half the women were depressed." So is Time saying that depression is not a mental illness (because too many people have depression, but people with real mental illness are those psychotic nut jobs over there… like me), or that killing one's baby isn't an obvious sign of said depression? Either way, I am, to put it politely, not impressed with this example of journalism.

  5. Katherine Stone/Post says:

    ^ Ditto.
    – K

  6. I used to think Time was reputable. Now? They are becoming just as bad as the tabloids.

  7. The language choice on the whole seems offensive, misleading and inappropriate. I hope Time gets their act together.

  8. Completely agree!

  9. Well said