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  • Writer's pictureJaime Wuillermin

Tech Mom vs. Traditional Mom


Courtesy Photo Columnist Jaime Wuillermin with her Pop Pop Bob Lelli and Mom Mom Aline Lelli in 1981.

Moms, how did we survive before social media? I now have four children. My daughter, who is going to be 26 this year, was my pre-social media baby. When she was young, we were living in Las Vegas, far from where I grew up in Vineland, N.J. There were so many reasons that a quick jump on a cell phone with a group of moms or friends with similar situations would have been so helpful. I was a young mom and working full time. I made the decision to stay home with her for three years and that time together made for a wonderful bonding experience. However, there were so many occasions that I felt lost and had to figure things out on my own. Was I doing the mom thing the right way? Of course, family, and close friends at the time had helpful advice. But those days are incomparable to the never-ending answers that a quick “Hey Google or Hey Alexa” offers today. I did not have a computer until my daughter was two or three years old. That still was not capable of doing much besides aiding in typing and storing information.


Local recreational clubs and church groups were a brief relief from the solitude being so far away from family. I remember my first experience with connecting through the internet was a blogging community where others created blogs about all sorts of interests including being a mom. It was insightful and fulfilling in a way to make these connections with other moms. I still have many friends from that time in my life including a mom in Ireland that has two children quite grown now like my daughter is today. I find that I look back and wish I had the capability of connecting with others going through similar situations. However, there was more one on one time that was quiet and focused. I was in tune with my daughter and able to enjoy her in a way that is somewhat missed in this next phase of my life.


Upon moving to Hammonton years later and starting over I made sure to quickly connect to the community. With cell phones and social media starting to really take off, connecting with other mom’s as well as old friends really added a sort of comfort I had been missing. No longer getting lost with GPS and connecting with others anywhere was quickly proving to be more than I could have imagined. As our new family started here in Hammonton and I was immersing into the Hammonton mom community there were so many moms able to connect and groups formed. Everyone seems to have similar needs when it comes to connecting for support and encouraging socialization in our pre-school little ones. Part of me wanted to jump in and join every event and every group and connect with as many other moms as I could.


I wanted to soak up the friendship and bonding that comes from going through similar situations. There were times that I looked at my calendar and there was somewhere to go almost daily to connect - play dates with the babies or mom’s night out with new friends. Reflecting on the time I had with my daughter alone and one on one without the daily meet ups, I am grateful for the world we are in now. We are able to help each other and create an environment in our community that connects us to others. I know that technology seems scary. At times it’s a bit too much when it comes to screen times for our children, but as my Pop Pop Bob often said “everything in moderation.”


It is good as parents to disconnect and take days or weekends at a time. It allows us to just enjoy time without devices, quality time reconnecting with our children who are surrounded by devices daily in school and at home. My three boys now twelve, ten and almost eight are in as many sports as we can manage. They are taught hunting and farming often away from devices as much as possible. I am not opposed to the wonderful world of social media that helps us connect to our community in a way that 25 years ago I never dreamed would be possible. Gone are the days of missing sporting events as most of the new team aps on our phones allow us to upload live videos and go live in the moment, so friends and relatives can watch as if they were there.


I am certainly glad to have been part of the generation that grew up without cell phones and social media and even video games for many years. Today my kids do not understand how I left the house in the morning and came home before the streetlights turned on. Part of me will always remember and cherish the times we had before such technology. But I will look forward to seeing how technology and social media allows us to improve and grow in the years moving forward.


Jaime Wuillermin is the copy editor and office manager for The Hammonton Gazette. She can be reached at jwuillermin@hammontongazette.com.

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