Criticism of the ARD documentary: "Oh Baby. Something from Mama" - moms who are so privileged that it hurts

Dear mothers and fathers, this text might make you think: Phew, she's jealous.

Criticism of the ARD documentary: "Oh Baby. Something from Mama" - moms who are so privileged that it hurts

Dear mothers and fathers, this text might make you think: Phew, she's jealous. But maybe you will also be fascinated by a self-satisfied, privileged bubble of Berlin celebrity mothers and fathers who revolve around themselves and who are accompanied in the NDR documentary "Oh Baby! Sowas von Mama". I admit: I was sick on the sofa and maybe that's why I was a bit keen to experiment with the selection of my entertainment program. But well, once turned on, I couldn't turn away from what was shown to me.

So privileged that it hurts was my first thought about the newly released season of the documentary series in the ARD media library, produced by NDR. The series has been advertised to me for a long time, but so far I've successfully avoided it. If it had stayed.

It starts with self-made scenes by Evelyn Weigert, mother of two, influencer and moderator of the format. Keck asks her if any mother manages to brush her teeth in the morning before daycare or she tells how she actually wanted to leave the house without pants. That should probably suggest to us: She is one of us. She is also a stressed mother. OK, I got the message. Although I regularly brush my teeth in the morning before leaving the house.

In one of the next scenes we are in a Berlin apartment. Probably Prenzlauer Berg. Art hangs on the walls, old carpets lie on the floor. Two mothers talking on the sofa. So far not so unusual. The fact that it is the presenter Evelyn and her friend Jule Lobo makes it interesting. It's definitely not the topic of conversation: the childbed and a pile of diapers that has accumulated on the balcony. I would imagine that for a single mom who's at the end of the month and doesn't know how to stock the fridge, a few diapers on the balcony shouldn't be a reason to turn up her nose. For Evelyn and Jule they are definitely worth mentioning.

While the mums are chatting on the sofa, Sascha Lobo, renowned author and journalist and Jules Mann, and Alex, Evelyn's husband, go into the children's room to talk about breastfeeding - and I had to turn away for a moment, otherwise I would have switched it off . Yes, fathers also have a part in breastfeeding, and yes, I think it's good when they talk about it with their partner or other people. But two fathers who talk in the children's room with holy seriousness about the hormones and the guilty conscience of their wives about not breastfeeding and are filmed by a camera at the same time seem out of place and just completely off the mark.

In "Oh, Baby! Sowas von Mama" it says on the ARD website, presenter Evelyn Weigert gives a ruthlessly honest insight into the different experiences and perspectives of mothers and fathers. The program is intended to encourage courage, without pointing fingers and above all with a lot of humor. What is concealed in the description of the program: Here very privileged mothers and fathers only encourage other mothers and fathers who are also very privileged. The majority of parents fall by the wayside when they often look smugly at their own existence in trendy Berlin districts, when they visit the influencer girlfriend’s chic furnished apartment or when they take a look behind the scenes at one of Evelyn’s photo shoots.

Namely the parents who do not have a high income, who cannot take a break from their everyday life because it is either not financially possible or because they lack the support. Who are single parents, who care for children or other relatives or who have mental or physical problems. I could go on and on with this list, because in short, a large group of parents will be joining "Oh Baby!" feel pretty unseen. And that's what bothers me.

Actually, I could have imagined it. Finally, I follow a large part of the actors of the documentary on Instagram. Evelyn Weigert, moderator and influencer, podcaster and author Jule Lobo or fashion influencer Jessie Weiß. All mothers and all at home in the trendy districts of Berlin. All well-off, pretty and as authentic as possible in their role as mothers. At least that's what they present to us on social media.

Admittedly, something about the Instagram profiles of these women fascinates me. I can often only marvel at the self-image with which they lament about their lives. And I'm really not a troll who writes screaming: "WHY are you having children if this is all too much for you?!" But I am also a mother and I know other mothers and fathers. And their living conditions look different: Less money, and above all less than Evelyn in "Oh Baby!" repeatedly propagated Me-Time. It is certainly important. I agree with Evelyn. But what if you can't treat yourself to this me-time. That leaves "Oh Baby!" unfortunately unanswered.

Now you could say: well, then unfollow the channels. Sure, I can do it. No problem. Nevertheless, the whole thing takes place in the ARD media center and thus in the GEZ-financed area. And what arouses my displeasure is that this documentary aims to encourage parents and at the same time takes a completely transfigured look at what the reality is for many fathers and mothers in Germany.

At home with Evelyn and Alex in the Berlin apartment, the alleged chaos of the family of four is to be presented in fairly contrived everyday situations. A visit to Evelyn's parents in Bavaria is pending. Hectic packing bags. Yes, since the children were born, people only travel with bags. This is certainly useful. Especially if you have an elevator in the house that takes you to the in-house underground car park, where the station wagon is parked, which only needs to be loaded with the bags and off you go. Any mother or father who has ever gone on vacation with bag and baggage and the children on public transport will probably react quite uncomprehendingly to the stress that the two are experiencing. Because the luxury of having your own car parked in the underground car park is actually quite pleasant.

What reconciles me a bit with the format are Evelyn's parents. They sit calmly in their Bavarian living room and support what their daughter is up to. And Evelyn's mother also says something that cannot be dismissed out of hand. If Evelyn has a twist, then she has to go through with it. It doesn't matter if the child has a fever or if she misses her family. Of course, this is the case for all working parents. But there's no such thing as child sick leave in showbiz.

But hey, although episode one briefly opened up a new perspective and thus awakened a glimmer of hope in me, episode two continues undeterred and unreflective: This is about the so-called "working moms". If the episode had been made into a drinking game using the term "working moms," I would have been so drunk afterwards. After the term "working moms" was shouted at me for what felt like the 30th time, I asked myself: What's the point of working moms all this time? As if working was a superpower. Unfortunately, no. For many mothers and fathers, working is a necessity that cannot be emotionally examined from front to back because there is neither time nor strength for it.

Our "Working Moms" Evelyn Weigert, influencer Jessi Weiß and moderator Nina Moghaddam meet for a coffee gossip in Jessi's really perfectly furnished apartment, in which of course there is no indication that three small children live here. I don't know, but I can well imagine that the cleaning staff helped a little before the shoot. Basically no problem at all: If you can afford to ask for help, you should be happy to do so. But nevertheless, a picture is drawn here again, which simply does not correspond to reality.

So the women talk about being a mother, and as if the series didn't open up enough clichés here, Alex, Evelyn's husband, is going where at the same time as Johann, Jessi's husband? Well, to the pub, of course. Women coffee gossip, men men's cover. Then everything is clear.

It also becomes difficult when Evelyn starts talking about her body in an interview. There are photos of her really very normal beautiful body before pregnancy. Just the way she talks about weight and body shape makes it clear: being thin and losing weight after pregnancy is ideal. Just like Evelyn, who has slimmed down again. And because ARD promised us in the description that "Oh Baby!" will not give a raised index finger, Evelyn pushes another casual: "Relax" to herself. What sounds funny isn't. Such scenes and statements increase the pressure. Because Evelyn tells it in a public format and not only on her Instagram gang, which follows her anyway and can be unfollowed at any time.

And so it goes with "Oh Baby!" cliché after cliché, and the unreflected view of a really small group of mothers and fathers, which unfairly generalizes for all parents, flickers at me. When in episode three everything revolves around the subject of sex, I switch off. seen enough After only two episodes, I ask myself the question: Dear NDR and dear ARD, is that really the picture you want to present of parents in all their facets? And we're not even talking about the fact that all diversity falls by the wayside in this documentary series. A same sex couple? None! A couple with a migration background? Probably not found among Berlin's celebrity parents. That too has reasons. But that would be another article.