I spent a lot of time as a teenager wondering if my mom was really happy. How could she be, I wondered, working a thankless job as a teacher, married to a man who worked incessantly, and dealing with two kids who were hell? She never stopped moving — she would wake up at 4AM to work out before her day began, and then go through her daily motions. How could anyone be happy with that?
What a concept — approaching self esteem by telling a child their darker selves are loved. Only in our culture is the primitive drive to propagate a species seen as dark and dirty. We MUST change that. Sex is not dirty or disgusting, it’s amazing and should not be relegated to something we do in the dead of night when the house is asleep and the lights are off. Turn on the lights and make love at noon. Sex and pleasure are not desires that should be hidden, but valid feelings that when expressed appropriately, bring immense joy into your life.
I don’t want to raise my daughter thinking that this is what it means to be a lady — that the prevailing pink culture is what defines femininity. I want her to know it’s okay to get muddy, that it’s alright to wear Mutant Ninja Turtle shoes if she wants because these things won’t make her any less a girl.
Allison and her wife both wanted to experience different parts of baby-making and parenthood, so they decided to do partner-assisted in vitro fertilization. Here’s the story of how Alison got pregnant with her wife’s baby
At this point I was feeling pretty good about myself and the conversation. I felt I’d taken a stand for equal rights and promised to defend my daughters’ reproductive rights. I was feeling much like a bona fide father of the year candidate when I was blind sided by the next question. “So, how do they get in there then?” she asked.
When I was a kid, growing up with bright red hair wasn’t easy. It’s tough to remember just how red it was as it fades with age. I mean, it was a really deep dark oxidation red. A burnt umber that would have made Bob Ross sigh in delight and approval. Besides the typical teasing of being the odd looking kid in the neighborhood, there was an inordinate amount of hair touching that occurred back then too.
Life with a weird kid is isolating. You spend a lot of time tamping down that parental anxiety when your kid is freaking out and it seems like all the other kids are sitting nicely and cooperating. You explain over and over that your kid just doesn’t like circle time or story time or most organized activities. I’ve learned over time to respect my son and the way he functions, and there are a lot of activities we simply cannot do because he can’t handle them. I’ve learned that the reason it seems like all the other kids can cope is that the parents with the weird kids are staying home. I’ve felt completely and utterly alone as seemingly everyone else went around with their perfectly normal, average kid.
I don’t know a lot about parenting, since I’ve only been a step-parent for four years and a bio parent for less time than that. What I do know, aside from having ALL my notions about motherhood, children, and life-after-kids utterly demolished, is that my daughter navigates this world better than I do. Thus, I present my case that my toddler — and really, most kids her age — is smarter than me.