The Wall Street Journal published an article this week about “a new model of at-home fatherhood,” spawned by the rise of stay-at-home dads and inclusiveness of fathers in the day-to-day parenting. While the WSJ wasn’t quite arguing that parenting is all duded up and bro-ed out, it did argue that stay-at-home dads have put a “distinctly masculine stamp on child rearing and home life.”
Yes, there is research to back up the claim that the relatively small amount of stay-at-home dads — who comprise only 3.6 percent of all SAH parents — do rear children differently than the larger sample of stay-at-home mothers (an elite 18 percent of male-female couples). SAHDs allow their children to take more safety risks and also plan more spontaneous trips.
But I just don’t see how those traits are being ascribed as “masculine.” Surely there are mothers who don’t hover over their child’s every move? Surely there are mothers who are spontaneous? The WSJ interviewed fathers who do things like take their kids to the park and on errands to Home Depot (where a toddler “studied different kinds of hammers”) … because moms don’t take their kids to the park and run errands, I guess? Keep reading »
Yesterday was the 40th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade. I spent the day reading, writing, and thinking about abortion. I’m clearly not quite done.
I’ve never had an abortion, but that doesn’t mean that I — like many women — haven’t been in a position where I ended up considering having one. I certainly thought about abortion when I was 17 and completely freaking out after my first time having sex, both an unexpected and unwanted event. In the painfully long two weeks that I had to wait until I was finally able to take a pregnancy test, I considered all of my options, among them abortion. While I thankfully didn’t need to make any sort of choice in the end (except to head to a doctor for a full battery of STD testing), just knowing that abortion existed provided me with some sense of comfort in all of the swirling chaos that comes with being a teenager suffering heartbreak and confusion. Keep reading »
A mini-explosion occurred on the Internet this week when Bishop Larry Trotter, pastor of a Chicago mega-church, posted a picture of himself in the bathtub with his four-year-old granddaughter. Trotter sat in the tub smiling beside the little girl, whose face has been blurred out; both are covered in bubbles, so it’s impossible to tell whether he or she is naked (or wearing swimwear, or otherwise clothed).
Quite understandably, people got very concerned. Keep reading »
“I didn’t really fully comprehend the level of guilt involved [with being a mom]. I like to pride myself on not being a person who really functions at a level of guilt, and yet, man, I never knew I could feel so guilty when I work 16 hours and I really don’t get to spend enough time with my son. It’s awful.”
–”Nashville” star Connie Britton tells People magazine about the newfound capacity for guilt she’s discovered as a mom to her adorable 2-year-old son Yoby, whom she calls “the most incredible kid.” Despite the struggles, Britton says, “I wouldn’t have it any other way,” and in fact she would love to add to her family: “I would love more kids. Why not? Bring it on.” God, can you imagine having Tami Taylor for your mom? Luckiest kids ever. Connie, just FYI, I’m totally available for adoption. [People]
Dara-Lynn Weiss, the woman who became infamous for writing in Vogue about putting her daughter on a diet, wants it both ways: she repeats over and over in her new memoir The Heavy: A Mother, A Daughter, A Diet, how much she loves every inch of her daughter, including her pesky belly, but then painstakingly details the lengths she went to in order to shrink it. That dichotomy surely wasn’t lost on her daughter, and there’s no telling how that will affect her in later years. Weiss’s attitude is that she had to take extreme measures to combat the extreme problem of childhood obesity, but it’s the very extremity that concerned me. I felt anxious reading it as Weiss panicked and seemed completely consumed by this project when her four foot four, 93-pound daughter was pronounced obese by her pediatrician. Keep reading »
“I understand the desire to make a child feel beautiful at any weight. I truly advocate for size acceptance. The culture of body image upsets me and has tortured me personally. I do think we should be able to be different sizes but I draw the line at when it starts affecting her health.”
– Dara-Lynn Weiss, who was ostracized after she published an article in Vogue all about putting her seven-year-old daughter Bea on a diet. Weiss has a new book out, titled The Heavy, which expands upon that article. Here, she attempts to explain why she put her child on a diet. Elsewhere in the NYMag.com interview, Weiss notes that she was afraid of giving her daughter a complex because of her own discomfort with food. But she also painstakingly explains that the Vogue photos were misleading, because they don’t show Bea’s midsection, and how fat she really is. UGH.
If nothing else, this interview — which focuses heavily on Weiss’s own body issues — sheds light on the vicious cycle of body image problems that mothers pass down to children. Will you give The Heavy a read? [NYMag.com]
I’m not sure if you all heard about it or not, but Kim Kardashian is pregnant. I’ll wait a moment for the shock to sink in.
We can now look forward to six more months of paparazzi falling all over themselves for the newest baby bump shots, interviews with Kim and Kanye’s potential nannies, photoshoots of their nurseries, and “in depth” articles that pontificate on everything from what Kris Jenner will go by (something tells me she doesn’t dig “Granny”) to whether Kanye will cut the cord, to dissecting which potential weight loss programs Kim will utilize/shill to get back into her “pre-baby bod.”
And I can tell you already, I’m over it. Keep reading »
Motherhood is one hot topic. From magazine covers that pushed people’s buttons to daily headlines on both news and gossip sites, moms were praised, targeted, and questioned.
While most headlines were pure click bait, some were actually attached to insightful, thought-provoking pieces. As we head into 2013, let’s take a look back at the good, the meh, and the ugly when it came to motherhood in mainstream headlines from 2012: Keep reading »
“It’s embarrassing to go through any rebellious stage in front of people that you love and respect, and yet I’m glad I did. I’m glad I lived such a full life before I settled down into a family, because I got to enjoy it and get it out of my system.”
–Drew Barrymore tells Allure magazine that she doesn’t regret her very public wild child phase (which included a trip to rehab at age 13 and a legendary bra-less moment on the “Late Show With David Letterman”), because it prepared her to be a calmer and more present mother to her daughter, Olive, who was born this September. “I’m finally a part of a family,” she adds, “and it’s a miracle.” Awww!
I’m curious to hear from some other moms and moms-to-be about the point in your lives you had kids (or when you ideally want to have kids), and if you agree with Drew. I’ve always thought that it’s good to pack your pre-kid years full of as many crazy adventures as possible, but I’ve seen many of the younger moms in my life–the ones who might have “missed out” on that rebellious stage–become really amazing mothers. Thoughts? [Allure]
“It’s unthinkable.” That’s what headlines are proclaiming and friends are telling me about the absolutely devastating massacre in Newton, Connecticut.
For me, it’s the complete opposite. I can’t stop thinking about it. Since the first moment the internet started buzzing with slips of information, my mind latched on and couldn’t let go. Days later and it still hasn’t. I’m not sure it ever will.
Why? Keep reading »