Apparently even French mothers have trouble answering the question “gay or European?” A new smartphone app offers French mothers a questionnaire to help figure out if their sons like sticking their French bread in a warm, buttery croissant … or not. The $2.69 app asks 20 questions which inquire whether their bébé mimics gay stereotypes like enjoying show tunes, dressing well, and eschewing sports. Somewhat more controversially, some questions assume it’s the parents’ “fault” a child is gay, like asking if he had an absent father or the mother was authoritarian growing up. If the questionnaire assesses mama‘s crisply dressed, show-tune loving frog is gay, it tells her to “accept it.” But if he’s just a little, uh, European, the questionnaire reads, “You have nothing to worry about, your son is not gay. So you have a very good chance of being a grandmother with all the joys that brings.” How sensitive. [RFI.fr via The Awl] Keep reading »
Recently, I wrote a blog post about teaching our girls to be feminists. But I also think boys should be taught what it is to be a feminist. A couple of years ago, I recall a conversation I had with my 13-year-old nephew who is quite intelligent and a bit beyond his years. He was saying that he and his friends had had a discussion about who had it easier, men or women. They decided that women did for various reasons. A huge conversation ensued, as you can imagine, with my nephew, his mother, his grandmother and grandfather, and me. I think decidedly, by the end of the talk, we might have changed his mind! But it was a great moment to have an intelligent discussion about gender and what it means to be male or female in today’s world.
There seems to be a lot more research being done lately about boys and gender stereotyping. Undoubtedly, we need boys who will grow up understanding and appreciating what it means to be female in our society as well as the world-at-large because they will benefit from that awareness and so will everyone else. There are plenty of adult men out there who support women’s rights and work equally as hard to continue to make sure that girls and minorities are at the forefront of the discourse about equal rights. The question is, are we raising boys who are sensitive to inequity, critical thinkers, and culturally aware? Keep reading »
“I’m scared of screwing up my kids. I thought that once we were out of the baby stage, parenting would be a breeze. But it’s an even bigger challenge now that Liam and Stella are older. They understand things. You just feel at every turn like, whoa, am I making the right decisions … There are days when I struggle with wanting to be a full-time, stay-at-home mom, and feeling guilty about that because I work. There’s this one mom at school who’ll be like, ‘Oh, we’re having this playdate or whatever, can you come?’ Recently, when I said I couldn’t, she said, ‘Oh, you never go to anything.’ That hit me really hard … I used to be obsessed with what other moms would do, but listening to your maternal instincts is always the right decision.”
—Tori Spelling talks to Parenting magazine about her thoughts and fears on being a parent now that her kids are three and four-years-old. Side note: Michelle Williams looks an awful lot like Marilyn Monroe on the October cover of Vogue. But in this photo, where Tori and her family pose in their Halloween costumes, let’s just say that she’s not a Marilyn. [People] Keep reading »
“I like being in the city. I like the diversity that my children are exposed to every day. I love the way their brains work. [My son] Joe turns to me the other day and says ‘One day I will have a girlfriend or a boyfriend, darling. Which would you prefer?’ And I said ‘My love, that would be entirely up to you, and it doesn’t make any difference to me.’ But that he knows! It’s a real privilege. Talk about the best education.”
— Kate Winslet tells V magazine she wouldn’t care at all if her son was gay. What an awesome mama. Also, I love how her son calls her “darling”! [PopSugar] Keep reading »
One of the things that freaks me out the most about having kids someday is letting them choose their gender roles on their own. I am going to make a conscious and concerted effort to let my kids know they are loved and accepted however they choose to express themselves. But I’m also realistic and I know the outside world fits little kids much more neatly into “boy” and “girl” boxes. Just this weekend, I was at a toy store and rolled my eyes to the top of my head at puzzles targeted for girls’ and boys’: the girls’ puzzles were pink and had makeup shapes, while the boys’ puzzles were blue and had truck shapes. God, could it be any more stereotypical? If I’m acting that way now, childless and single, how am I going to be when I have an actual kid whom I am responsible for?
Probably a lot like the blogger at Feminist Breeder (aka Gina Crosley-Corcoran, formerly of the ’90s band Veruca Salt) who is committed to “gender-neutral parenting,” but was given a free vanity from her dad’s girlfriend. Now she’s agonizing about putting this super-uber-girly-feminine piece of furniture in her little daughter’s bedroom. Keep reading »
Michael Lohan ain’t got nothing on Kimberly Garrity in the bad parenting department. The many grave and terrifying abuses inflicted upon her children include a sending a birthday card without money inside, failing to send care packages to her son at college, and calling her daughter at midnight on Homecoming to tell her to come home. She even forced one of her kids to wear a seat belt.
Clearly you can understand why her two children, Steven, 23, and Kathryn, 20, sued Garrity for $50,000 citing “bad mothering.” Keep reading »
“I didn’t know she had that many tattoos! We don’t talk but we email, so I didn’t know about the new ones she’d gotten. When she first got that Jeff Buckley thing I was, like, she knows I went on a date with him, right? And I saw the Quentin Crisp, I was incredibly impressed. I was like ‘Awww, that’s my daughter!’ … Well, yeah she’s beautiful. What else did you expect! She’s my kid!”
—Courtney Love may be pretty much estranged from 18-year-old daughter Frances Bean Cobain but she’s still got a mother’s concern about her daughter’s ink. Frances recently posed for some absolutely breathtaking photos by the high-art photographer Hedi Slimane. Who would have thought that of all the famous teens to do photoshoots, the child of Courtney Love’s would be the most tasteful? [NY Observer] Keep reading »