Some parents have become mad at their new baby gerber

Monday, June 6, 2022
author picture Hugo Bertrand
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Gerber Photo Search Winner: Kelsey O'Hagan

A nurse told Kelsey O'Hagan about the Gerber Photo Search, an online contest where you can enter a photograph of your baby. O'Hagan, a stay-at-home mom from Methuen, Mass., that she was one of the winners. She submitted a photo of her son, Everett, in April.

Kelsey O'Hagan heard of Gerber Photo Search first from a nurse during a visit to her son Everett, now 12 months old. O'Hagan is a stay-at home mother of 30 years from Methuen in Massachusetts. She replied, "Oh my god, you must submit him; He's so adorable, he's got such good personalities, and you could win $25,000," she said. She submitted a picture and video of Everett as part of her application to become the company's spokesbaby. He was not going to win. I didn't doubt him but it just felt impossible. Subscribe to The Morning Newsletter from The New York Times She was right. Gerber's 12th Annual Gerber Photo Search was announced on May 4. Its winner was Isa Slish (8 months old), a beautiful beauty with bright blue eyes and long eyelashes. She also has a charming smile. Today's Today Show featured Isa who, as a result of congenital leg difference (congenital limb differences), was born with neither a femur nor a fibula. Melissa said she would save the money for the daughter's surgery. Isa won over 225,000 submissions since Gerber's April 4th announcement. Perhaps it was the rapid announcement, which is atypical for contests that take two to five month. Or the fact many eligible children from this year were born into a COVID-19 world. However, this announcement generated more than just a few grumbles on the internet. It happens all the time, but this year's response to social media channels such as Instagram was much more sharp than normal. A Contest That’s Come a Long Way, Baby Although the original Gerber Baby, an Ann Turner Cook charcoal drawing, died Friday, at 95, it has a lot of cachet. However, the Gerber Photo Search was launched in 2010. Shannon Frieser from Gerber said that the contest allowed us to find out more about families and babies from different backgrounds and their hopes and dreams. The number of entries to the contest has varied over the years, with 110,000 entering 2017 and 544,000 entering 2019. These entries reflect the experience of many children across the country. There have been a number of winners, such as an adopted child, with Down syndrome, and a miraculous baby, born to a mom who was unsure about her fertility. The prize money has ranged from $25,000 to $50,000, and the two most recent winners have also been named the Chief Growing Officer, a job that appears to require showing off Gerber foods on social media. The Not-So-Cute Backlash On Instagram, the comments on this year’s winner had an edge. The most insensitive comments were deleted, but two arguments, in particular, remained: How was the contest decided so quickly, and why don’t toddlers ever win? And with that pushback, the comments section devolved into meta discussions of pointed criticism and defensive justifications. There was frustration, however. O'Hagan stated that they chose the winner and it's cute. However, I think it would have been cool if, on their stories, they also posted the runner up or top three babies. In response to her comment on Gerber's Instagram, she recalled that her son had never been given a chance. Gerber already had the winner selected before the contest started. She replied quickly, claiming that Gerber had used an agency to organize the contest. Gerber responded: Gerber doesn't use any agency to choose the Photo Search Winner. Gerber employees make up our panel of judges. Brittney, a 23-year-old stay-at-home mother of two from Sikeston, Missouri, shared the frustration. This year I was just pretty disappointed, she said. And I noticed a lot of other moms were as well. It’s not that the baby that they have picked is a problem. She’s a gorgeous little girl. It gets a little fishy every year, she added, because I know Gerber had to at least collect hundreds of thousands of pictures and videos, and it did not take them long to pick a winner. She requested to be identified by only her given name out of concern for her children’s privacy. Gerber stated in writing to The New York Times that each year the Gerber spokesbaby will be chosen by an independent panel of Gerber employees, who make sure all submissions have been thoroughly reviewed. We received more than 225,000 submissions for this year's contest. This year we expanded our jury of judges to review all entries and identify the children whose expressiveness, personality and/or shining personality stood out. We are committed to giving each submission the chance it deserves. We did not fail to smile a single time. Kevin Wagner (a father of a young girl from Fond du Lac in Wisconsin) entered the contest to see if people thought he looked like Gerber's baby. His 2-year-old daughter. This is what drove us to try to get our shot. He was also disappointed. Wagner who is a mover, stated that babies have an advantage. He said that this allows them to test baby food. When it gets up to 4, they haven't chosen a 2-year old, 3-year-old. He said that it was a contest for cute babies, and not sad stories. Mercy Townsend was two years old when she won the contest. However, each of the winners since then has been younger than that. Gerber stated that all babies are equally considered in Gerber Photo Search. We hope to have another toddler spokesperson in the future. A Difficult Time to Parent Every parent who entered the Gerber Photo Search has been affected by the COVID-19 epidemic. Brittney gave birth to her child wearing a mask, The frustrations of parenting in a pandemic continue. There is a crisis in child care, women are leaving the workforce and children younger than 5 cannot get vaccines. Now, Brittney and other mothers are spending hours driving to various stores to search for formula. This is a slow-motion crisis that began with a February recall and has aggravated pandemic-related supply chain issues. She said that she felt like the Gerber search was when many parents became desperate for money. It was hard to find formula, diapers, and wipes when people hoarded toilet paper, and the older generations were still hoarding baby wipes. This is a very dangerous situation and angry mothers are the ones who make it worse. Parents have been more affected by the pandemic than anyone else. They've been affected hard. There was a lot of emotional outpouring online, which made clear that even though there is a small chance of winning the contest, it can be a great opportunity for pandemic parents who are frustrated to tell a bit about their lives. These parents have suffered and worked hard, but they are eager to be recognized for what they did. O'Hagan's baby boy was born June. Instead of her taking him home when she went home, O'Hagan had to keep him in the neonatal nurse for additional testing and monitoring. When she went to see O'Hagan, she asked if there were any possibilities of her being able to stay with him in a bed. She said that the nurse had not given up on her request, due to new pandemic protocols. She said it was difficult to be a parent and Everett is doing much better. It's not something we do a lot of. Only a few people will be there that we are familiar with. This is a new way of living. It's full of emotions. (c) 2022 The New York Times Company