Category Archive

Families

Our sister site Offbeat Mama launched in 2009, became Offbeat Families in 2012, and was merged into Offbeat Home & Life in 2015. This archive contains all the posts ever published on those sites! We believe that while children change your life forever, being around kids doesn’t necessitate abandoning your identity. We believe in supporting and inspiring parents and caregivers who are moving beyond mainstream visions of parenting. We welcome anyone who’s interested in families, whether you’re pre-parental, in the process of becoming a parent, or choosing to live childfree.

I took my daughter to therapy with me

I took my daughter to therapy with me

I try to speak openly about my battle with depression, and it is the time of year where I tend to be at my worst. This season is no different, and the last few weeks have been a struggle to accomplish my day-to-day tasks. Still, even with my attempts to be open and unashamed of my mental health, it was hard to bring my daughter to therapy with me. I never had the intention of bringing her. However, I had my usual therapy session scheduled on one of her approximately 148 snow days this year. My first thought was to cancel the session, but I realized the only reason I was going to do this was some ambiguous sense of discomfort…

How underwater maternity photos helped me enjoy my pregnant body

Why underwater maternity photos? Because any time I have my picture taken my brain is all, “Have my arms always been this… weird!? Why are my hands so flappy? Is THIS what my smile feels like? HOW DO LEGS WORK!???” Amplify those body issues by, well, two when you’re pregnant and it can feel even MORE awkward. But under the water, all of that changes! And the result is all this mermaid awesomeness…

My child sexually was harassed on the school bus & the reality set in

My child was sexually harassed on the school bus & the reality set in

Yesterday should have been a normal day. It started off that way. But instead it became a first for my eldest daughter. My daughter asked a boy to stop using profanities, and instead, he used them more and more, especially directed at her. And then he threatened her, repeatedly.

When the bus did stop, she ran as fast as she could and into my arms. Her whole body shook with fear and anger. That was the day our daughter became the victim of sexually violent language. She is ten years old. The boy was twelve. She was riding the school bus home from fifth grade.

How do I survive current politics at family gatherings?

How do I survive current politics at family gatherings?

I’m headed to my partner’s family’s house for Thanksgiving. My partner and I do not agree with his family on political issues and I have a feeling that there will be discussions about the Midterms and other issues. I’m not sure how to handle them, if I don’t just hide away in the bathroom and ride it out. Any advice for surviving the holidays with a family on the other side of the big political divide?

Could-be-babies: my missed miscarriage of twins

Could-be-babies: my missed miscarriage of twins

I’ve been up all night deleting my lists of baby names, deleting my secret baby registry, unfollowing the Twins groups I joined on Facebook, throwing away the books and the ultrasound photos that I’d been proudly displaying on our fridge. I’ve been up all night unbecoming a mother. I had a glass of wine and sushi and it wasn’t as good as I needed it to be. Women don’t talk about miscarriage, even though it happens to a lot of us. A LOT.

Prayer for the grandmother I long ago scorned

I read today that all of a woman’s eggs develop in her body when she herself is still in utero. At four months, the female fetus develops its ovaries and all of the eggs that lie therein. Which means that the seeds for every single one of us, every single human being, are planted in our mothers while our mothers are still within our grandmothers. In a sense, we were all born of our grandmothers.

When kids books go bad: how Mr. Men and Little Miss teach kids to hate themselves

When kids books go bad: how Mr. Men and Little Miss teach kids to hate themselves

There are a lot of books that I enjoyed as a child that dismay me as an adult. I try not to be a loud feminist killjoy too often, but occasionally I come out of hiding from my lair, like when I read this outdated series of books that somehow ended up in my house and has been taken up by my son with great enthusiasm…

Help! What's the best way to store dirty cloth diapers?

Help! What’s the best way to store dirty cloth diapers?

We are 32 weeks pregnant with our first child and planning on cloth diapering. I’m looking for a little bit of guidance on how to store the dirty diapers until wash time. I looked on the internet but still felt confused after reading about dry pails v. wet pails while other people recommend getting a bidet sprayer to attach to the toilet. I would love to hear what other people do in the time between a diaper getting dirty and laundry time.