The Good Mother Myth: redefining motherhood to fit reality

Her kids have always slept through the night, and even if they don't, she still manages to look like she has had eight hours of uninterrupted sleep. There is always a well-balanced, home-cooked meal on her dinner table. She either happily stays at home or holds down a fulfilling job while still finding time to join the PTA, run the school's book sale, and makes it to every single soccer game. She is usually white, middle to upper class, heterosexual, and neither too young nor too old. But above all… she's a myth. And it's this myth that divides women and pits mothers against each other while fueling the flames of the manufactured "mommy wars."


Let's talk about what you're reading right now + my favorite recent grown-up reads

Depending on where you live it's likely your kids are either already back in school or headed back soon — possibly leaving you with a bit of free time that would usually be spent organizing the house or shepherding everyone from one evening summer event to another. I know we tried having an Offbeat Families Book Club last year to varied degrees of success, so we don't have to go that route — but I'd love to know what you guys are reading nowadays!


Here's a list of all the stuff pregnancy books probably won't tell you

Recently several newly pregnant friends have asked me if I had any advice for them, which has given me occasion to think over all the things that have kept my partner and me going throughout my pregnancy and our first nine months of parenting. While pregnant, I read as many pregnancy and parenting books as I could get my hands on, and learned a lot, both about what I wanted to do and what I didn't want to do.


Where can I find kids' books that feature children with disabilities?

My two-and-a-half-year-old was born prematurely and currently has a few different disabilities and setbacks that we're working with. I'm always on the lookout for children's books that prominently and positively feature children with disabilities. Unfortunately, it seems like I can ONLY find them at hospitals — and we can't take those home with us.


On refusing to let your kids take over your life

I want my daughter to see that I am happy with my life now. I want her to understand on a fundamental level that she deserves happiness, too. And, I want her to be able to handle life's obstacles as a confident and capable individual… Preferably one who doesn't grow up to live in my basement.