Michelle Obama 'Single Mom' Slip Up Sparks Criticism on Social Media

Friday, 05 Apr 2013 02:18 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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Michelle Obama referred to herself as "a busy single mother" during an interview Thursday while discussing the challenge of getting her family to eat right amid the daily grind.

"Believe me, as a busy single mother — or, I shouldn't say single, as a busy mother. Sometimes, you know, when you've got a husband who is president, it can feel a little single. But he's there," the first lady during an interview with Burlington, Vt., CBS affiliate WCAX.

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The first lady's flub drew conflicting reactions online. Some saw her gaffe as offensive to real single mothers.

"This is an insult to actual single mothers," one person commented on an E! Online story about the gaffe. "My mother was a true single mother after my father abandoned us when I was two. She didn't have a White House full of staff to look after her kid… That is a wonderful kind of mother — not one who is a fame monger by calling herself a single mother to garner attention on TV."

"Michelle Obama is completely out of touch," someone posted on Politico. "Yes she is busy... going on expensive vacations. She has no idea what it is like being a single mother — working, cooking, cleaning, driving your kids to school, doing laundry, and grocery shopping, all by yourself while trying to raise good mannered, intelligent, productive members of society. She has a staff of people doing almost all of these things."

Others sympathized with Obama.

"I'm sure with an ambitious and busy husband, it often felt like she was a single mother," another commenter wrote.

Obama recovered and continued talking about healthy eating options for families.

"But as a busy working mom, and before coming to the White House, I was in that position," she said. "Working, driving kids to practice, not having enough time to shop or cook — not having the energy, you know, the resources weren't the issue but time and energy is key."

Obama made the rounds this week to promote her "Let's Move" campaign, a movement aimed at fighting childhood obesity by giving kids access to healthier, more affordable foods, and helping them be more active.

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