Avital Norman Nathman

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Mommie Dearest: On Parents Who Publicly Shame Their Kids

When it comes to parenting, one of the more difficult aspects to figure out can be discipline. There doesn’t seem to be one set method that works for every child, yet everyone has an opinion on what supposedly works best. For parents, it feels like a lot is riding on our disciplinary method, as it’…

Avital Norman Nathman / August 18, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Parents Need To Get Real About Sex Ed

Once upon a time, I was a high school social studies teacher. One of my favorite classes to teach was a college lecture-style current events course. I co-taught it with a handful of my colleagues and we gathered every morning in the school’s auditorium with the entire senior class. Since it was so convenient, administratio…

Avital Norman Nathman / August 12, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Bravo Is Serving Up Some “Extreme Parenting”

There’s a new reality show coming to Bravo this Thursday: “Extreme Guide to Parenting” will be an hour-long show that follows the lives of a variety of families, all living on the “extreme” edge of parenting. Several stereotypical parenting philosophies will be represented, from the helicoptering couple to the overly attached attachment parents, authoritative parent…

Avital Norman Nathman / August 5, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Florida Hospital Tried To Force C-Section On A Mom

A Florida mother gave birth to her fourth baby this past Friday amidst a hell of a controversy. Jennifer Goodall, who has had three previous C-sections, had been hoping to attempt a vaginal birth with her fourth delivery. However, her providers at Bayfront Health Port Charlotte were not on board with her wishes and went…

Avital Norman Nathman / July 31, 2014

Real Talk: On Debra Harrell’s Arrest, Motherhood & Race

In last week’s Mommie Dearest column, I wrote about Debra Harrell, a South Carolina mother who was arrested for “abandoning” her nine-year-old daughter at a park while she worked at a nearby McDonald’s. (Just yesterday we learned that Harrell has been let go from her job.) I had mentioned in my post that Harrell i…

Avital Norman Nathman / July 23, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Mother Arrested For Leaving 9-Year-Old At The Park While She Went To Work

Another day, another mother arrested for trying to have it all. And by “have it all,” I mean struggling to figure out child care with little support while maintaining a minimum wage food-service industry job.

A 46-year-old Black mother from South Carolina was jailed for letting her nine-year old daughter play at the…

Avital Norman Nathman / July 16, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Are We Now In The Age Of DIY Abortions?

I was a freshman in college when I found myself Googling “can Vitamin C induce your period?” There had been some condom-less sex and, surprise surprise, worries over a late period. I wasn’t about to head to my university’s health care office, which offered a Band-Aid and some Tylenol for pretty much every malady. I…

Avital Norman Nathman / July 10, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Motherhood Is Not For Everyone And At Least Cameron Diaz Realizes It

Motherhood — it’s not for everyone. Yet we live in a society that pushes it as the one path of femininity and womanhood above all. For women who choose not to head down that road, they’re usually subjected to all sorts of invasive questioning, unsolicited advice, and are generally made to feel as if they’re…

Avital Norman Nathman / July 3, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Can 7-Year-Olds Be Assholes? You Bet — But That Doesn’t Mean Brandi Glanville Should Say It

Can seven-year olds be assholes? You bet.

Do parents sometimes talk about how their kids can be total assholes with their friends? Most likely.

Should parents — especially those with a decent-size platform — talk publicly about how their kids are huge assholes? Of course not.

But that’s exactly

Avital Norman Nathman / June 23, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Meet The #FreeTheNipple Activist Who Wants Areolas To Be Free

In 2011, actress and filmmaker Lina Esco went with a handful of friends to Occupy Wall Street, curious to see the response to a group of topless women.

“Within minutes there were hundreds of people taking pictures, and they didn’t know what to do with these boobs,” Esco told The Frisky. “After 10…

Avital Norman Nathman / June 16, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Mom Breastfeeds At College Graduation, Heads Explode

Sigh. Here we go again.

People are currently in an uproar over a photo of a mother breastfeeding her daughter taken while at her college graduation. 25-year-old Karlesha Thurman posted the photo to the Black Women Do Breastfeed Facebook page, which reposted it for her, and it quickly went viral. Many people were…

Avital Norman Nathman / June 12, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Tales Of An American Mom Traveling Abroad

I’ve been out of the country for the past two weeks, spending almost the entirety of that time in Israel. Along the way, I’ve learned some interesting things about taking an extended global trip while parenting.

Contrary to what you might think, there are some pretty sweet perks to traveling with a child.

Avital Norman Nathman / June 6, 2014

Mommie Dearest: How Moms Talk About Their Bodies Matters

We’re on the cusp of “bikini season,” if magazines in the grocery shore checkout line are to be believed. I’m sure you’re familiar with the wide variety of products — ones that remove hair, ones that firm up jiggly thighs, ones that promise to burn stomach fat — which supposedly get a body ready for…

Avital Norman Nathman / May 30, 2014

The Soapbox: Why Macklemore’s Costume Matters

Last Friday, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis performed a surprise music concert at the Experience Music Project Museum in Seattle. Awesome, right? Only, because it was a surprise, Macklemore wanted to go a bit incognito and donned a costume. But the costume was anything but awesome. To me, and many others, the costume looked like a negative

Avital Norman Nathman / May 20, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Gwyneth Paltrow & GOOP Wade Into The “Mommy Wars”

With the way the media shoves the “mommy wars” down our throats, I’m amazed that there isn’t already a reality show based on that concept out there. (Reality TV producers, this is NOT an invitation to prove me wrong). You could have a handful of women battling it out for their child’s love! Or society’…

Avital Norman Nathman / May 14, 2014

Mommie Dearest: Let’s Talk About The Placenta

It always amuses me when something concerning pregnancy, birth, or parenting pops up as a “trend.” Odds are, that “trend” has been in practice for ages, but most likely in non-urban, non-privileged, non-U.S. areas. Take, for example, the notion of using midwives to deliver babies over OB-GYNs. Only when it hit Brooklyn and the New York

Avital Norman Nathman / May 7, 2014

Mommie Dearest: An Interview With Dana Ben-Ari, The Filmmaker Behind “Breastmilk”

Breastfeeding: it’s one of those heated topics of motherhood where everyone has an opinion and they’re not afraid to share it. For me, nursing was just something that was a part of having a baby. I was breastfed, I grew up among women who breastfed, and it was assumed that I would as well whe…

Avital Norman Nathman / May 2, 2014

Mommie Dearest: My Son’s Long Hair Gets Him Mistaken For A Girl

My seven-year-old son has hair that many people would kill …  or at least pay an arm and a leg at the salon for: honey blonde with natural ombre highlights, ringlets that cascade down, skimming right above his shoulders. [I have seen photos of Avital’s son and his hair is indeed glorious. — Amelia]

Avital Norman Nathman / April 23, 2014

Frisky Q&A: Melanie Notkin, Author Of The Otherhood, On Women Who Want Children But Don’t Have Them Yet

The Otherhood: a growing population of educated, professional women in their 30s and 40s who have yet to find love or start a family. In fact, statistics show that almost 50 percent of American women are childless — yet our society still isn’t quite sure how to treat these women, placing all sorts of assumptio…

Avital Norman Nathman / April 16, 2014

Mommie Dearest: What Happened To Child’s Play?

Show of hands: who else remembers roaming neighborhood streets unsupervised until dusk during your elementary school years?

I have crystal clear memories of being allowed to bike the three short blocks to my friend’s house (sans helmet!) after school for playdates —and not of the hyper-scheduled variety. We’d usually hang out in her…

Avital Norman Nathman / April 7, 2014