To the editor:
As a daughter, and the mother of five grown children, I appreciate the Lawrence Journal-World's special section May 7 honoring mothers.
However, I was dismayed by the photo on the front of that section. The picture of two hands entwined was, I'm sure, intended to represent a mother holding the hand of her child, and the reader knew which hand was the mother's because it wore a traditional wedding ring on its third finger.
The message seemed to be that all mothers are involved in traditional marriages, but I have no doubt that at least a few of the letters printed in that section were written by the loving, appreciative children of devoted mothers who no longer wear a wedding ring, or who never wore one.
Not all mothers are in traditional marriages, whether by choice or by circumstance. Women experience motherhood in a number of ways: as women who are in traditional straight marriages, as women whose husbands have died, as women who are divorced, as women who choose not to be in any kind of partnership, and as lesbians who (in most states and countries) are not permitted to legally marry their partners, to name a few. Narrowing the criteria for motherhood to include traditional marriage excludes many women who deserve honor and recognition.
I hope the choice of that particular photo had to do with a lack of sensitivity rather than a not-so-subtle message about motherhood.