One of the more challenging aspects to being a parent is keeping a handle on all the various things to which your child is exposed. For instance, the many studies pointing to a connection between early exposure to violent media and aggression certainly causes me to think twice about the television shows my almost-six-year old watches. And while I possibly think too much about the potential for him to turn into a pizza-eating, nunchuk-wielding vigilante as an adult due to too much “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” it’s for good reason. Children are highly impressionable sponges, soaking up as much of the world around them, and most parents want to ensure that their children are only soaking up the good stuff.
It makes sense. We’re raising the next generation and all, and we’d like them to be decent, conscientious people who aren’t car-thieving murderers who played too much “Grand Theft Auto” when they were younger. However, for as much as we’d like to have some semblance of control over what they’re exposed to, we’re not with our children every single second of the day. We can’t dictate what they’ll pick up from friends, extra-curricular activities, or school. At some point, we need to trust that we’ve instilled in them the ability to make good and reasonable choices for themselves, despite their seemingly undying love for Ninja Turtles (No, seriously. My son is obsessed. I do sort of fear he may take to the sewers one day). Keep reading »
I have known since I was a wee child that someday, there would be a woman in my life that I would hate more than any person on the planet. She will be the epitome of all things evil; a seething skin-bag of meddlesome, ignorant lady-pus, hardly worthy to walk among us and yet, walk among us she will. Unabashed, her goal in life will be to make me miserable. She will shame me and mock me and re-fold my towels in the most offensive possible way, all in the name of “helping.” She will make passive aggressive comments about my weight and my pot roast. She will kiss my husband on the mouth in front of me.
She will be my mother-in-law. Keep reading »
At some point in the life of many little girls and some little boys there comes the cold, hard realization that you cannot be a princess when you grow up. Think about it: do you really want to spend the rest of your life like Kate Middleton abusing brown eye liner? I thought not. A new clip from “Sesame Street” breaks it to those booger-eaters with the help of Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Keep reading »
Bad news for those who believe homosexual parents can negatively affect their children: a study of 17-year-olds who were raised by lesbian mothers found that they did well in school, with grades ranging from A- to B+, and were overall happier with their lives.
Keep reading »
Originally appeared on Role/Reboot. Republished here with permission.
Last week, two young children, Leo and Lulu Krim, were allegedly stabbed to death by their nanny in their home in Manhattan. The children’s mother discovered the bodies as Yoselyn Ortega, the nanny, began to hack at her own throat. Although the nanny survived, she is hospitalized and unable to speak.
The reports to date are that the Krim family was kind to the nanny — there were no bad feelings on either side of the relationship. A friend of the Krim family recommended Ms. Ortega, and she’d been their employee for approximately two years.
Parents are searching for an explanation that makes the incident understandable believing that if they can understand why it occurred, they can take precautions to avoid a similar catastrophe. These deaths happened at the hands of a nanny, but children may be harmed in daycare, in school, at Boy Scouts or … the list is long. Too long. Keep reading »
Last week we watched an interesting social experiment on the TV show “What Would You Do?” where actors playing a mom and kids went to a Halloween costume store looking for non-gender-conforming costumes. A little boy begged to be a princess and a little girl begged to be Spiderman, while nosy shoppers (mostly) discouraged the kids and their mom from those costumes. So I was delighted to see an actual real-life mom write a piece for the New York Times this weekend about the time her three-year-old son wanted to be a princess. And interestingly, her concern wasn’t that he wanted to be girly — it was that all the princess junk out there didn’t take into account her son is black.
Doreen Oliver writes that her older son is autistic and struggles to communicate. So if her younger son wants to express himself in any way, even by dressing up like a princess on Halloween, she and her husband will support him. And, she adds, “[I]f it turns out Bug is gay, we’d embrace his identity.” The problem wasn’t that Bug wanted to be a princess, though — it was that “his idea of a princess had blond hair and peach-colored skin” and sure enough all the princess costumes had blonde wigs and pictures of “smiling white women.” Keep reading »