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Megan Rapinoe And The USWNT Are Now Invited To The House And The Senate

Posted: 01 Jul 2019 08:04 AM PDT

Megan Rapinoe just got two invites that are way better than the White House

If you didn’t know who Megan Rapinoe was before this month, you weren’t alone. But the captain of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team is now a household name, due to both the team’s success in this year’s World Cup (they’re now in the semi-finals and heavily favorited to win the Cup), and because of Rapinoe’s use of that platform for her no-holds-barred, feminist AF activism. She’s described herself in the past as “a walking protest,” and she’s not letting her time in the spotlight go by without taking her fight for social justice straight into the public eye.

Part of that included saying she would decline if President Donald Trump invited her and her teammates to visit the White House. While it’s customary for successful American sports teams to get that invite, several teams have refused to go because of Trump’s racism, sexism, bigotry, etc., etc. Trump responded by putting Rapinoe on blast on Twitter, his usual medium of choice, basically telling her to shut up and win. She is doing that, thank you very much.

But while Rapinoe and her teammates apparently won’t be gracing the White House with their presence, they have a couple way better options on the table. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded to the controversy by extending an invitation for Megan Rapinoe and the entire USWNT to visit her in the House of Representatives and take a tour.

LOL at anyone who thinks choosing between hanging out with Donald Trump, an accused rapist who makes vulgar comments about women and minorities on the regular, or AOC, who is actively fighting her ass off to make the world a better place for women, people of color, and all humans, would even be hard. AOC all the way for us, and it seems like Megan Rapinoe agrees, because she readily accepted the invitation.

And while visiting the House and meeting a rising star Representative like AOC would be pretty freaking rad on its own, another lawmaker stepped in to sweeten the pot. Democratic Presidential Candidate (and debate standout) Kamala Harris joined the conversation, tweeting that while Rapinoe and the USWNT are in Washington, they should stop by the Senate and hang out with her, too. Dreams. All our dreams.

If this all actually happens, it will be a gathering of truly powerful women. The USWNT is one of our country’s most successful sports teams, with three World Cup titles already under their belts, and a fourth very possibly on the way. AOC is the youngest ever female member of Congress and an all-around badass who holds politicians responsible for their words and actions and advocates for policy that will stop climate change. And Harris is one of the strongest, most competent candidates for president in the crowded Democratic field, and gives us hope that after the nightmare that was the 2016 election, maybe this country can finally elect its first woman president.

Megan Rapinoe, just make sure you post lots of photos when you meet these other inspiring women. We’re gonna need them for all our vision boards.

The post Megan Rapinoe And The USWNT Are Now Invited To The House And The Senate appeared first on Scary Mommy.

10 Unique Baby Shower Gifts Of 2019 You Should Know About

Posted: 01 Jul 2019 07:30 AM PDT

baby shower

A baby shower is a chance for friends and family to get together and celebrate the new parents-to-be and, of course, the new baby. We play games, open gifts, and warn them of the many sleepless nights to come.

And for moms of older kids, it gives us a chance to get that adorable baby outfit we've been wanting to buy. (We can get the outfit, without having to actually have another baby. Win, win.)

But baby shower gifts can be cute AND practical. There's a ton of cute stuff that they didn't have when our kids were in diapers.

Here are our top 10 baby shower gifts that we've found this year:

1. 3-in-1 Travel Bag

This is a portable bassinet, changing station, and a diaper bag all in one. So parents can have a safe space to change the baby, wherever they go. It's great for days out with the baby, overnight trips, etc. Now if only we could get a portable nap station for parents…

2. Babaste Bottle Holder

This height-adjustable bottle holder encourages hands-free feeding, which can improve the baby's hand-eye coordination and motor skills. It helps keep bottles secure (so they don't get thrown across the room) and off of the floor, with a pivot range that lets babies hold it from any angle.

3. Hatch Baby Rest Sound Machine

This sound machine is also a night light that parents can control from their phones. Customizable color, brightness, sound, and volume level. And as kids get older, they'll love to customize it themselves. No promises they'll actually sleep, but this will help.

4. Blooming Bath Lotus

This is the perfect way for parents to bathe babies (from 0–6 months old) in any sink. It's a fun alternative to baby baths, and it's easy to clean (just wring out extra water and throw it in the dryer for 10 minutes) and store. And all new parents could use one less thing to worry about.

5. Bathtub Kneeling Cushion Mats

Babies will outgrow the baby bath, but they love spending tons of time in the big tub, and we mean TONS of time. These mats will help save parents' knees and elbows while playing, helping them wash, etc. They also have storage pockets for toiletries and toys for easy drying.

6. Forehead Infrared Thermometer

This non-intrusive, hygienic forehead thermometer uses hospital-grade technology and is designed to take body temperature AND object-surface temperature (i.e., baby formula, bath water, food, etc.). Most importantly, it can take a kid's temperature easily, quickly, and help parents avoid the tantrums associated with standard thermometers.

7. "Tortilla" Swaddle Blanket

Now parents can swaddle their babies in something that actually looks like a tortilla. This set comes with a swaddle blanket and hat (for 0–3 months) and will have your baby looking like an adorable burrito in no time.

8. Baby Shark Bath Set

If the parents-to-be don't know the Baby Shark song yet, they're about to. This 4-piece set comes with a hooded shark towel, bath mitt, and slippers. So you can do do do do do do bath time right.

9. Fisher-Price "Coffee Cup" Teether

This is an adorable rattle and teether in one. Now the baby can match their parents' lattes. Because, as we know, they'll be in the throes of sleep deprivation.

10. Gourmet Coffee Sampler

Not everyone drinks coffee or copes with their lack of sleep through caffeine. But this is how a lot of new parents make it through those first few months. This sampler of four gourmet roasts is the perfect gift for new parents to have on hand in case they have a colicky baby.

You really can't go wrong with any of these items. Cute outfits and tiny shoes are also always encouraged. And maybe throw in a package of diapers, too.

Shopping for babies is so much fun that it almost makes me want another one. ALMOST. (The baby burrito outfit is really cute.)

Babaste Bottle Holder for toddlers and babies is the perfect solution to bottle throwing and makes bottle feeding easy! With its no-spill design, Babaste's bottle holder helps parents multitask while still staying engaged with their babies. Plus, for parents of multiples it's a game changer.

The post 10 Unique Baby Shower Gifts Of 2019 You Should Know About appeared first on Scary Mommy.

How My Daughter’s Death Changed The Way I Look At Cemeteries

Posted: 01 Jul 2019 06:00 AM PDT

Though it can have its heartbreaking moments, visiting the cemetery where my daughter is buried has been my way of taking an active role in my own grief. For a time, I was visiting multiple times a day. Some might say that's unhealthy, but not to me. You see, it was, and is sometimes still, my way to cope.

The cemetery where she is buried is absolutely beautiful. Seated at the tip-top of a huge hill and surrounded by trees is where she lies in a place called “Babyland.” To tell you how much her resting spot is cared for, the groundskeeper's wife (a family friend) hand-cuts the grass around all of the baby graves with scissors in the places where the riding lawnmower did not reach. She is a God-send and too good for this world.

Up until my daughter's death, cemeteries had always creeped me out. But now that my daughter's physical body rests in one, I view them quite differently. Kind of like the groundkeeper's wife. For every headstone shown, and even the marked graves without, there is someone's loved one. Whether their loved one has now joined them in ashes to ashes, dust-to-dust, or not, they were loved. Good person or not, they were loved. Flowers or no flowers on display, they were loved.

But somehow in America, cemeteries have evolved into a taboo destination unless it’s a solemn visit or funeral. Meanwhile, in some cultures, there are holidays to remember and honor deceased loved ones, such as Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). In Denver, some cemeteries double as parks. And up until the beginning of the 20th century, America’s cemeteries weren’t so still and silent either.

In 18th and 19th century America, many children died before they were 10, if they even lived a day at all, and maternal mortality rates were alarmingly high. Infectious diseases such as cholera and yellow fever were sweeping our nation and killing our people. Therefore, cemeteries became a sort of safe haven for the bereaved to openly share their grief with others who understood, while also being surrounded by both living and deceased loved ones. 

In one Grand Rapids 1885 newspaper clipping, one reporter wrote that he was greeted in a cemetery on Thanksgiving day by a bereaved family after the loss of their father and husband not even six months prior. The younger son said to the man, "We are going to keep Thanksgivin' [as my Father] was live and hearty this day last year, and we've brought something to eat and a spirit lamp to boil coffee. You don't mind our making ourselves comfortable, and I think there's enough to find you a bite anyways." 

The author of the article reflected on his time with the family by writing, "I felt thankful, somehow, as I watched that family [making a sort of] sacred picnic out of their grief, ‘leastways, I don't know what else to call the lump [that] rose in my throat." 

This soothing take on grief is due, in part, to the revitalization of cemeteries, which kicked off alongside the rural cemetery movement  — an initiative placing cemeteries outside city limits instead of on church grounds. Keith Eggener, associate professor of American art and architecture at the University of Missouri, tells The Atlantic that old church burial grounds were beginning to be viewed by the public as “inadequate, dangerous, crowded, expensive to maintain and carriers of disease.”

Back then, headstones, if the family could afford them, showed unpleasant images such as skulls and Father Time extinguishing the light on life's candle. Cemeteries were dreary places to visit, offering nothing but a chilling reminder of death. Therefore, they weren't a place that anyone desired to visit, let alone picnic.

Konstantin Pudan/Unsplash

But the rural cemetery movement changed this by beautifying cemetery lands and the headstones of those buried within their walls. The dark and unknown was opened with “winding roads and picturesque vistas,” offering a serene getaway for nearby civilians … much like the cemetery where my daughter is buried.

Public parks weren't around during this point in American lifestyle, but cemeteries' park-like attraction created social gatherings among thousands of individuals on hundreds of acres of land. Holidays, special occasions, or even an after-church Sunday picnic were all common on cemetery grounds.

But with this kind of attention, there also came a downfall for the newly-constructed, adorned and beautiful grave sites. Litter. One newspaper clipping stated, “A remarkable fad sprang up in Denver of going to the cemeteries for the picnics. It became such a nuisance to have thousands strew the grounds with sardine cans, beer bottles and lunch boxes that police interference was contemplated.”

Photo by DDP/Unsplash

But then the reporter noted they appeared “happy under distressing circumstances,” and law enforcement ultimately turned a blind eye because it was “worthy of cultivation.”

In the 20th century, however, the tradition of picnicking in the cemetery became less common as the life expectancy increased and public park space expanded. Although cemeteries in America today remain silent for the most part, some cultures continue to keep the tradition of picnicking at the cemetery alive.

For some, much like me, it might be exactly what gives them a touch of comfort during the many discomforting stages of grief. For others, it might just mean that it's the perfect remote place to walk their dogs. Whatever it may be, there's nothing wrong or "creepy" about finding a sense of peace and solace on cemetery grounds. Just don't forget to respect those who have gone before you and clean up after yourself.

The post How My Daughter’s Death Changed The Way I Look At Cemeteries appeared first on Scary Mommy.

My Kids Get The 5 P.M. Version Of Me

Posted: 01 Jul 2019 06:00 AM PDT

So I did something wild a few nights ago — keeping in mind I am an average working mom of three kids so wild probably isn’t really wild. This wild thing I am referring to is spontaneously taking all three children (ages 7, 6, and 2) to the pool, after work, and it wasn’t even Friday (I told you it was bonkers). I got home, looked at the three of them on the verge of meltdowns, glanced at the disastrous mess in my house, and said, “Grab your bathing suits; we are going to the pool.”

Now, I’ll confess, part of the reason I did this was because I didn't feel like cooking dinner, but I also truly just wanted to have some fun with them. They seemed liked they needed to do something exciting and out of the ordinary too, and I can honestly say, even though we only stayed a couple hours, we had SO MUCH FUN, probably because it was unexpected, and my kids are used to regimented week nights of dinner, homework, activities and bedtime routines.

Singkham/Pexel

While it may not seem like that big of a deal to others, it can be super hard to pick up three small children and go somewhere after a long day of working. I usually need to make dinner, clean up from the day, start laundry, make sure everyone has what they need for the next day, etc. Not to mention who feels like doing anything complicated at 5 p.m. whether you have been working or not? It's the time of day where everyone is just tired, and unwinding, especially me. But here's the thing: my kids really only get quality time with me at 5 p.m. so lately I have been trying to suck it up, chug some coffee, and be a happier person for them after work.

5 p.m. me is the first version of me they really get time with all day. It's really our first opportunity to sit down and hang out, talk, laugh, and do all the things I can't do during the day.

Don't get me wrong, I am not saying my kids don't have a great time all day playing with friends and doing activities, whether it is at camp, with a nanny or at school. That doesn't take away from the fact, however, that most of our one-on-one time starts when I am literally leaving eight plus hours of usually stressful and intense work with clients and colleagues. Before I had kids I would de-stress after work by going to the gym, running, meeting up with friends or just vegging out on the couch, but now that's not an option – I have to start my most important job, being a mom.

Most days during the school year the kids have activities, so we are rushing around trying to get everyone ready for those, but I have learned quality time does not need to be extravagant. Sometimes it is just 30 minutes of jumping on the trampoline, or riding bikes. Sometimes it is taking two kids to the playground while the other is at soccer instead of doing work or laundry.

Of course, I am a huge proponent of the kids being bored, mustering up their own creativity, and figuring out how to entertain themselves, so I am not saying anyone should be over planning and orchestrating "magic" all night long. It's just that I usually go straight from my tasks at work to my tasks at home, and I think my kids got lost in that shuffle. I have started to realize that if I spend even just a tiny amount of one-on-one time with them during this time frame after work, they are happier and the rest of the evening usually goes so much more smoothly.

All that being said, here is the really, really important thing – if I make an effort to carve out quality time with my kids when I get home, even if it's just 30 minutes, then something else absolutely has to give. I can say this with 100% certainty, because we only have so many finite hours in the day. Most moms already have their days planned out to maximize efficiency and there is literally no more time and, trust me, I am not giving up anymore sleep.

Asheesh/Reshot

What gives in my house is a home cooked meal or tidying up the house. This means we eat take-out or sandwiches more often than not, or there are toys strewn about everywhere for days at a time, and I have learned i have to be okay with that.

I get it, we have to make time to do those things too (chores, errands, dinners). But in the grand scheme of things I have learned that I have happier kids when I spend even just 30 minutes after work  having fun with them, and I am a happier mom when I let some of the other stuff go. So chug that coffee (or maybe a glass of wine), order that pizza and pull out a board game – you may find the kids aren't the only ones that are happier.

The post My Kids Get The 5 P.M. Version Of Me appeared first on Scary Mommy.

When You Hate Your Name

Posted: 01 Jul 2019 06:00 AM PDT

Confession: I hate my name. No, I really hate my name.

Truth be told, it’s not a terrible name at all. In fact, I like it for others, it just doesn’t work for me. It doesn’t suit me. No one uses my actual name, and sometimes I wish I could change it. I compromise by using a shortened version of my full name — Eliza. In the past, I’ve also gone by Liz, Lizzie, and E.

There are lots of reasons people might hate their name. Maybe they think it’s too ordinary or too unusual. Maybe it’s too long or too short. Maybe it lends itself to unfortunate nicknames. Or maybe you have a bad association with the name. For me, it’s a little bit of all of this.

My mom picked my name because it’s my grandmother’s middle name. Which is a decent reason, and I loved my grandmother a hell of a lot, but she gave my sister her first name. I’ve always feel pretty left out about that particular parental move. Sorry, Mom.

When I was a kid, my parents never used my name. They called me Lucy, for reasons unknown. In fact, every goddamn relative I had called me Lucy. My father and aunt still call me Lucy. (Lucy: I like this better than my name, so much better that I tried using it in the real world for a while, but it wouldn’t stick). When they used my full name, I knew I was in big trouble. So what did I always associate my name with? Someone angry at me. Someone really fucking angry at me.

My husband calls me Beautiful all the time. He only uses my real name when he’s really pissed off. The same way call him Bear all the time, and only call him Christopher when I’m super angry. So I still associate my name with someone being angry at me.

When I started school, everyone just sort of collectively decided I’d be called Liz, because they were too lazy to say a name with four syllables. But Liz rhymes with whizz (i.e., pee). So guess what I got called, all the way through school? I hated my name. But no one would call me anything else.

I tried to get everyone to call me Lizzie. Which I liked a lot better. Honestly? I still like it a lot. A friend who rode horses with us started calling me that. I actually associated that name with something positive (for once). But everyone seemed compelled to shorten it, so I was back where I started in the beginning. All through middle school. All through high school. Good friends would call me Lizzie, and still do. I don’t mind that one. If I knew no one would ever shorten it, I might actually use it. But everyone shortens it, so I don’t bother.

Abigail Keenan/Unsplash

Four syllables. Parents, be careful before giving your kid a name with more than two syllables, unless you want them to end up with a nickname. If you want them to go by the name you bestow on them, if you don’t want the entire world to shorten it to something else, pick something two syllables or less. One of my sons has a one-syllable name. One has a two-syllable name. The other intentionally has a three-syllable name I don’t actually like very much. Everyone mispronounces it, and I intentionally misspell it half the time, just because I think it looks better and then people pronounce it correctly. I gave him this name I don’t like much because I prefer his two-syllable nickname, August, so much. Something about a four-syllable name is just too damn long to say. Even my three-syllable husband Christopher inevitably becomes Chris to everyone but his mother.

When you hate your name, you eventually get to a tipping point. You can either surrender or take a stand. Me? I chose to take a stand. I got so sick of correcting folks who used my full name or a nickname I didn’t like, I posted about it on Facebook. I went on a long rant about why I hate my name. I laid out all the reasons. I explained everything and asked folks to call me by my preferred name. And it worked.

Well, except for when my husband and I are debating whose turn it is to put the dishes away.

 

We are Scary Mommies, millions of unique women, united by motherhood. We are scary, and we are proud. But Scary Mommies are more than “just” mothers; we are partners (and ex-partners,) daughters, sisters, friends… and we need a space to talk about things other than the kids. So check out our Scary Mommy It’s Personal Facebook page. And if your kids are out of diapers and daycare, our Scary Mommy Tweens & Teens Facebook pageis here to help parents survive the tween and teen years (aka, the scariest of them all.)

The post When You Hate Your Name appeared first on Scary Mommy.

When You’re The House Where All The Kids Hang In The Summer

Posted: 01 Jul 2019 06:00 AM PDT

Growing up, there were a couple of houses where a group of us would always hang out. We would eat all the food, make all the noise, and likely make all the messes too. We sprawled out on couches and living room floors, where we controlled the TV remote too. We were in and out of houses to use the bathroom or get something to drink between sweaty games of basketball or long bike rides. The parents of those houses seemed to genuinely enjoy having us there, because bags of chips and pitchers of Kool-Aid were always waiting for us. Fast forward 30 years and my house is now one of those houses that hosts all the kids.

And I love it.

I love the little street I live on. The neighborhood has slowly turned over from retired folks to young families in the last few years and there are now several kids on the street. To be fair, most of them live in my house (3 kids, ages 8 and 6) or the house two doors down (4 kids, ages 5-12). Between my crew and the neighbor's kids, the pack of them bounces from house to house, and at any given point, I have extra kids in my yard or kitchen.

And honestly, they are usually in search of gum.

Yes, gum.

Daria/Reshot

Any kid who swings by knows we keep a stash of bubble gum in the middle drawer of the kitchen counter. Sometimes they will ask for a piece, but more often than not, a child, usually one who doesn't belong to me, will walk through the house without fanfare and begin digging through a drawer.

"Why do you only have mint gum?" the neighbor's 5-year-old asked me the other day.

I raised my eyebrows at her. "Because you chewed all of the other kind and I haven't been to the store yet."

She sighed and suffered through the spearmint option, and went back outside. Don't worry, she and the others always return and without an invitation or even knocking or ringing the doorbell.

One of my biggest pet peeves of being “that house” is the constant in and out, opening and closing of the door as my kids and their friends enter and leave the house. It's part distraction, part CLOSE THE DOOR BEFORE THE DOG GETS OUT, and part, what do you need now?

Every time I hear the door open, my anxiety rises. Though not enough to wish my house wasn't filled with life and happy kids, just enough to make me a little cranky and unable to focus on a specific task. Because when there are 5-8 kids cycling through your house, someone always needs something: a snack, a shoe tied, a Band-Aid, an ear to listen to the injustices of someone not sharing, or a bucket of water with no questions asked.

When the house is full, I really don't bother doing much more than taking an hour to unload the dishwasher.

For all the hassles and inconveniences, I actually love being the house that hosts all the playdates and drop-ins. I like knowing my kids' friends feel relaxed enough to ask what's for dinner, knowing I will always set a place for them. Granted, kids can be mooches and often expect mac and cheese to show up on a whim, but still.

I also love that my kids' friends feel comfortable in our home to demand sleepovers, knowing they will still get tucked in before falling asleep. I love seeing eight kids jammed into the living room to watch a movie and eat popcorn because, as much as my kids drive me batshit bonkers, I’d rather they be in or near our home than somewhere else.

pernilla11/Reshot

It’s not just so I can keep tabs on them either—though I do get to hear some interesting stuff when no one thinks I am listening. I get to overhear some really funny and sweet conversations. And I get to witness some really intense kid drama too. I mean, is there anything cuter than a 5-year-old throwing their arms up in the air and declaring they are going home because everyone is mean to then turn around and ask if someone wants to ride bikes with her? And while I don't worry too much about my kids' safety when they are hanging somewhere else, I do feel like they are safer when they are around me. I’ll blame it on a Mama Bear reaction with a side of anxiety and unfounded fear from a lack of control.

When my kids and half of the neighborhood are in my care, I know they are playing in a space that doesn't have guns, specifically ones that are not locked up. I know my kids are not around potentially “tricky people”—those people, I tell my kids, who seem nice but are not. I know my kids are not trying to cook, cut, or reach something their bodies are just not capable of yet, but their brains tell them they are. I know accidents can happen anywhere, but I am perfectly happy being able to monitor their environment without hovering.

Really, the only downside of being “that house” where all the kids congregate (other than the constant door opening and closing) is that I need to keep up my snack game. I don't have bags of chips at the ready, but pretzels and Goldfish crackers do the trick. Oh, and I always have cheap popsicles. And gum, of course.

I texted my friend and neighbor the other night to be sure she was okay with her kid staying at our house for dinner. Mom was fine with it but mentioned it would be her second dinner. The kid ate like a champ and then asked for dessert, which just confirmed that these kids are living their best lives, multiple meals and one piece of gum at a time.

And I'm here for it. Literally.

The post When You’re The House Where All The Kids Hang In The Summer appeared first on Scary Mommy.

My Ex And I Are Divorced, But We’re Still A Family

Posted: 30 Jun 2019 06:00 PM PDT

My daughter has been struggling lately with everything: boys, friendships, school work, and going back and forth between my house and her dad’s house. She just turned 14 and is ripe with hormones, backtalk, and feeling really shitty about herself at every second.

I know this because I remember feeling it myself at her age. Throw her parents’ divorce on top of the pile of shit she is shoveling, and it feels like doomsday in our house. I’m not exaggerating.

My ex and I have been apart for over two years, but we are very much a family. This was a choice, and a promise we made when he was getting ready to move out. I knew I didn’t want to parent our kids alone, ever. And because my ex is around, very present, and a fantastic father, I don’t have to.

“Promise me something,” I said, standing in the bathroom watching him brush his teeth over his sink for the last time. “Even if we hate each other, even if there comes a day when we can’t be in the same room, we will still act like a family and come together as their parents for those kids.”

“I promise,” he said.

rawpixel.com/Pexels

So, when she came to me and told me she didn’t want to go to her dad’s as much because she was having problems with his live-in girlfriend and her daughter, I had to get him involved.

I listened to her, let her cry, and then I told her we’d figure it out. This problem could not be solved by me making a decision about the way things should go by only listening to my daughter’s side of the story — as tempting as it was.

Instead of getting heated, I forced myself to pick up the phone and call my ex-husband to get the whole story. He thought it would be best to come over for a meeting so it could be talked out with all of us, because something like this affects the entire family, and everyone should have a voice here. Together, we came up with a solution, one that we were all comfortable with, including my daughter.

A few weeks earlier, I smelled gas outside our house and immediately called me ex . He was there in 20 minutes to figure it out — and not because he is at my beck and call, or because I depend on him too much, or because he still wants to be married to me. He came because his kids live there and he wants us all, including me, to be safe. Those feelings don’t dissolve when you sign divorce papers, even if you pretend they do.

We couldn’t keep our marriage together, but we’ve been able to keep the promise to one another for those three people we gave life to, those kids who never asked to be in a situation where they are being shuffled back and forth and splitting up their holidays.

It hasn’t been an easy promise to keep some days. There are many times where I’ve felt angry with him because I feel like I do all the heavy lifting. I remember the doctor and orthodontist appointments. It is me who checks their schedules and picks them up from school every day. Sometimes I get mad at him because he doesn’t really know what’s going on unless I fill him in and it takes a lot of time and energy to keep us all on the same page. It would be easy to drop the ball and take it all on myself and leave him out of it.

But I’m determined to still be a family no matter what it takes, no matter what it looks like, even if we aren’t married because it has been the one thing that makes all of the mess divorce brings feel semi-okay to all of us.

Agung Pandit Wiguna/Pexels

There is constant communication with us between text and phone calls — we have teenagers who need their parents to be on the same page about everything. And right now, that is what matters the most. In my book, that’s called a family.

There is no, “Well, dad lets me do this.” We do not put up with, “I’ll ask mom since you said no.”

It’s hard. It gets confusing. We don’t always want to come together and talk about the dynamics happening in our separate households.

If he’s had a chunk of time with them, he calls to give me the rundown and tell me about any issues or things that have happened during that time. And I do the same.

But we keep on because it works, it has helped us all tremendously, even during the days I feel like throwing up my arms and giving up because being angry and blaming him would be easier than picking up my phone, calling a family meeting, or telling him I need his help or parenting advice about something.

We loved each other once. That love has flooded onto our children, and they still need us in many of the same ways they did when we were married. We decided not to give up on that slice of our family life when we parted ways.

We don’t do it perfectly, but it’s the best we’ve got, and I’m proud of us for being able to come together and figure out the really tough stuff together. Things look different now, but we are still a family, and that kind of love is still very much alive no matter where our kids are.

The post My Ex And I Are Divorced, But We’re Still A Family appeared first on Scary Mommy.

The Anti-Diet Movement Is Transforming What It Means To Be Healthy

Posted: 30 Jun 2019 06:00 PM PDT

If you’re a woman, you’ve probably done it. Dieted, I mean. According to Live Strong, 50% of American women are on a diet at any given time. 90% of teens diet regularly. 50% of kids have tried a diet at one point. Low-carb, no-carb (which made my hair, and a friend’s hair, fall out, by the way), various corporate programs, Atkins, South Beach, keto … you know them all. Clean eating. But there’s a new trend, and it’s rising. It’s called the anti-diet. And we are so here for it.

Christy Harrison, an anti-diet registered dietitian and certified intuitive eating counselor, host of the podcast Food Psych, and author of the forthcoming book Anti-Diet: Reclaim Your Time, Money, Well-Being, and Happiness Through Intuitive Eating, explains what the whole thing means. She says we need to escape the belief that thinness equals moral and healthy well-being, promotes weight-loss as higher status, demonizes certain foods, and oppresses people who don’t meet the perfect standards all these things impose on them.

Anti-diet, she says, means, “anti–diet culture. It means standing against this oppressive system, in all its sneaky, shape-shifting forms”: from schools telling kids they need to lose weight and move more to your mother-in-law bitching about her need to lose weight.

Anti-diet, she says, does “not mean anti-health.”

According to Vice, the anti-diet movement, while popularized by some recent books, really has its roots in the radical fat-acceptance movement of the 1960s and was “borne out of radical feminism in the Bay Area of California amongst queer, Black, radical fat women.” The movement started with Susie Orbach’s Fat is a Feminist Issue breaking new ground in 1978, but nowadays, the anti-diet books have become a genre of their own, with Bee Wilson’s This is Not a Diet Book: A User’s Guide to Eating Well coming out in 2016. Both of these explicitly tie dieting to a feminist agenda: they “link between psychological needs and food habits.” Most new anti-diet books take their inspiration from there.

But anti-diet books have now become their own genre, says Vice, partly thanks to the body positivity movement and the general cultural movement against the whole wellness movement. Anti-dieting is about more than just eating what you want. In fact, Pixie Turner’s No Need to Diet book deals with issues like othorexia (obsession with eating healthy within a highly prescriptive rules), emotional eating, and health beyond nutrition. A working nutritionist, she says she “sees her book as more than just a collection of healthy dietary tips – it's a radical act,” according to Vice.

And this radical anti-diet approach tells women to eat what they want. Eve Simmons, author of Eat it Anyway, says, “There is literally nothing out there that is just common sense and nutrition … telling people the facts and the science and letting people make their own minds up based on that, rather than this trendy bollocks.”